Hate protection has been a hot topic through the hair Care World, no pun intended. The reason for this is because of the range of straightening irons and curling tongs and blow dryers that has come onto the market in recent years has just blown up. Hair that has been done in a salon with the right tools always feels fresh, volumized, soft and smooth. It could also possess a much higher level of shine with fewer frizz issues compared to if you just step out of the shower after you’ve done your own hair. It’s only later though, do the effects of heat on the hair materialize.
Hair can become rough, fragile and hard to manage when it’s been heat treated for far too long. Unfortunately, the benefits actually outweigh the negatives for many people, but the issues don’t appear until later on and that’s where the problem lies. Direct heat is an essential styling tool for her, and many people use it on their hair every single day. In reality, curling and straightening, drying and dying hair all involve some kind of heat and it’s not good for us. Hair was not designed to be forced into shape and submission, and yet we do it everyday with now even realizing that the maintenance we are doing to our hair is damaging it. Your favorite layered hair styles are not always possible without straighteners or curling irons, but even though heat is our hair’s worst enemy we need to consider continuing to use it if we want to feel good about ourselves.
The most important thing is to mitigate the issues that come with damaged hair, and we’ve got some signs that are obvious and not so obvious that your hair is damaged and you need to slow down on how much heat you are using.
- You are shedding your hair in an excessive manner. It’s super important to remember that shedding is an actual process. So a few times throughout the year, the average person loses around 50 to 100 hairs per day. However, if you feel like you are shedding your hair in clumps more than usual, the chances are high that you are dealing with heat induced issues. The easiest way to check if you are shedding more hair than before is to check the drain after you have a shower. A clump should never be more than an inch in diameter and if you notice, you should figure out where the problems are.
- You notice more split ends. Everybody deals with split ends at some point or another. On average, all hair begins to split around two months after a haircut. The splits should never be noticeable throughout your whole head, but only on the last inch of the length of hair. If you do notice it sooner or they never completely go away, you might have heat damage that you are dealing with. This is especially evident if the hair is splitting further up the hair shaft.
- Your hair is not holding its curls. Some people with curly hair choose to use heat on a regular basis to keep them holding. The problem is that if you use heat on a regular basis you might find a very unfortunate reverse effect. The curls can and do become quite lazy and they may even disappear altogether. You will then have hair that’s left dull and lifeless and semi straight around your head, so you can tell that once they were curls in your hair but they are not going to be as defined or are pretty. If your hair is not holding its curls, give your hair a break for a few months of using heat, then you could start reintroducing good hair curling products and the right curly girl method.
- Your hair is no longer holding moisture. If your hair is overly porous, it doesn’t absorb the products, the colour or the equipment you are using. This leads to faded colour and it makes your hair look brittle and damaged. Porosity refers to how well your hair can hold and absorb moisture and it also refers in her terms to the colour it can hold. If the flexible outer layer of hair, called the cuticle, is damaged, your hair will not hold as much anymore and it will lose its luster.
- Your hair no longer has a shine to it. While your hair may look fantastic coming out of the hairdressers, excessive heat is going to strip it of its natural shine. High temperatures damage the lipids in your hair that keeps the hair flexible and shiny. Consider how much you actually expose your hair to heat, and then consider how dull your hair looks now compared to a year ago. A drawing may take longer, but it’s a good way to dry your hair while you are trying to gain that luster and shine right back.
- You feel dry. Trying this is one of the most obvious signs of hair that has been damaged by heat. Besides looking dull and dry, the hair feels dry and that never feels good because it’s like straw. Over time, your hair won’t be able to retain the moisture and that can make it feel coarser. With deep conditions and the right products, you can make sure that your hair feels good again but you also need to step back from using the heat because thermally damaged hair does not fully regain its moisture.
- It’s no longer easy to manage. You might have once spent 5 minutes every morning styling your hair, but this is turning into a tedious half an hour. Your hair is now damaged by the heat that you have regularly used for a long time, which makes it hard to style, takes longer to dry, and can very quickly become very frizzy and messy. If you end up wearing a ponytail, consider styling methods that don’t include heat to give your head the brake that it needs. You can then restore its moisture and shine and make it far more manageable in the long run.