For those of you who love wearing your hair straight, whether you achieve the look through a relaxer, a hot comb, or weaves, the summer heat could become your biggest foe. All of a sudden, you find yourself pulling out your blow dryer, hot comb, and flat-iron more than usual. The slightest exposure to humidity and moisture in the air can turn your straight hair to curly, creating a look you weren’t going for. While you have gotten used to applying the heat, you must consider the ultimate damage you are incurring on your locks. Constant heat application is extremely damaging to your hair, and we are here to tell you how.

What is heat damage?

Heat damage occurs when you apply too much heat on your hair, damaging your hair cuticles. This could permanently alter the chemical structure of your hair, making what should be curly locks appear straight.

Have you ever experienced it?

Take, for example, a woman who wears weaves as a protective hair style, but leaves the front of her hair out, constantly blending her left out hair with the straight textured weaved hair. Chances are she is using heat to blend her hair with her extensions. Over time she will experience a difference in structure between her left out hair and her tucked away hair. This heat damage will result in split ends, dry hair, and ultimately hair loss. Now, imagine if all of the hair on your head experienced the same damaging effects because you chose to flat-iron your hair several times a week.

Stop the heat!

The best way to prevent damage as a result of excessive heat use is to stop using heat on your hair. Flat irons and blow dryers can be extremely detrimental to your hair, especially if used on high temperatures or too frequently. Twist-outs, braid outs, and roller sets are great styles that create texture and versatility without the heat.

If you must use heat, do so sparingly; we suggest less than two or three times a month. Use high-quality, coated, and durable flat-irons. Also use heat protectors, which form heat-absorbing polymers around the hair, before using any heated styling appliance.

If you want healthy, beautiful, growing hair, the excessive heat use has to stop. Start showing your hair some love!

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  • Heat damage is devastating! I find that women who start their healthy hair journeys usually have the most trouble putting down heat tools. It’s definitely a transition to go from wearing your hair straight to embracing textured styles but it is so beneficial to your hair. Incorporating air drying into your regimen can result in more length retention and thicker, healthier hair.

  • Yulez

    Just went through my second big chop after 8 years of being natural.

  • Peace and Afro Grease

    I have been flat ironing my hair every 2-3 weeks, instead of my usual 2-3 months. Eep. But I always use heat protectant, adjustable heat settings and my flat iron is 100% solid ceramic (not coated), so I don’t see the heat damage…yet. I need to stop. My straight styles don’t last past two days at this point. Stupid SF winds.

  • Last year, I decided to straighten my hair for a job interview. I had been natural for about 2 years and just wanted a sleek look. My hair was so damaged by the heat that two weeks later I had no other choice but to do a big chop. My hair was completely burned, smelled like burnt and not matter how many times I wash it, it could not go back to its natural state. Heat damage is real and what is sad is that I got my hair done at a beauty salon by a hair dresser that should I known better.

    Today, my hair has grown back and I plan on never put heat unless I am dealing with someone that knows what she/he is doing.