Turns Out, You’re Not Supposed To Let Your Hair Air-Dry
How did we not know this sooner?!
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Every person with long hair knows the struggle – you build up the motivation to hop into the shower and wash your gruaige, you spend up to half an hour in there rigorously massaging your scalp, standing around, allowing your conditioner to saturate your ends for as long as possible, eventually, you hop out, sleek but exhausted, and you remember the mammoth task that awaits you ahead – the drying.
For most of us, opting out of the drying portion of a hair routine seems like a no-brainer. You’ve nowhere to go, the house is nice and warm, and that new Netflix documentary is calling your name – you’ll let your hair air dry, you decide, sure it’s good for it, isn’t it?!
Well, actually, that’s where we’re wrong. Yes, I too was under the illusion that letting your hair dry naturally was like a heat holiday for your hair, but as it turns out, and I’m really sorry to report this, it’s not.
As it turns out, air-drying your hair can actually do it more damage than good, and the idea that it’s beneficial to your locks is actually a myth. Chatting with Peter Mark’s Ciaran Purcell, we got the suss on why exactly we should be reaching for that hair dryer.
“When hair is left to dry naturally the cuticle becomes more porous and absorbs more moisture from the air which can make hair frizzy and unruly,” Ciaran begins explaining.
Ciaran explains that your hair is at its weakest when wet, meaning that if breakage was to happen, it will do so when it’s wet. So, it’s always best to avoid having your hair wet for an extended period of time, and tying it up or styling it when wet is an absolute no-go too.
“Hair is more fragile when wet or damp and we would always recommend to avoid tying wet hair up with a hair tie (or bobbins, pins, go go’s etc.) as this can lead to breakage and create dents in the hair.”
What’s more than this, Ciaran says that many hair products, particularly heat-protectants are heat activated, meaning that without applying some heat from a hairdryer onto the hair, they simply won’t work.
“All heat protectors are heat activated and really need heat to deposit the ingredients into the hair which will strengthen, soften and add shine.”
If you’re someone who suffers from oily roots, Ciaran also says that blow-drying your hair has benefits other than keeping your hair strong.
“Using a hairdryer on hair that tends to get oily at the root will give root lift and protect the root from lying flat on the scalp, the flatter the hair lies the more the hair can absorb oil and will need to be shampooed more frequently.”
So, armed with knowledge, I want to know, what’s the best way to get your hair from wet to dry, without compromising your hair’s health? Ciaran recommends always protecting your hair with a heat protectant and/or oil and combing it through with a tangle-teasing brush. Then working from the roots to the ends, go in with a good-quality hairdryer on a low/medium setting.
If you really want to up your hair-care game, then why not invest in some silk accessories too, using a silk pillow to sleep on at night can protect your locks from damage, while a silk scrunchie will ensure your locks stay silky soft whether you’re wearing them up or down.
Your ultimate hair-care kit:
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