Kiss those summer beach waves goodbye—straight hair is having a major moment this fall. But before you fry your ends with a flat iron, know that there’s a better way to get sleek strands with less damage. Here are some quick tips to save you time, energy and split ends.
The Blow Dyer — Your New BFF
With the right products and tools, you won’t need to flat iron after you blow dry–which means you’ll cut the amount of time you expose strands to heat.
Prep damp hair with a product like Bumble and Bumble Straight Blow Dry ($28, bumbleandbumble.com), which has a gel-like consistency that helps loosen your hair’s natural curves. (A similar product we love: Fekkai Coiff Controle Ironless Straightening Balm ($25, Beauty.com).)
Add an anti-frizz serum, such as Yes To Carrots Anti-Frizz Serum ($7.99, Yestocarrots.com), if your texture is coarse or prone to flyaways. This 99 percent natural cream uses avocado and mango butter to naturally soften and tame strands. And be thorough: “Frizz can be reduced by making sure the hair is completely dry before leaving the house,” says Harmonie Redman, a stylist at NYC’s Butterfly Studio Salon.
If you’re going for a pin-straight look, use a flat brush to blow out hair. Want a little movement and volume? Opt for a round brush. The bigger the brush, the bouncier the blowout.
Finish off with hairspray, like TIGI Catwalk Sleek Mystique Look-Lock Hairspray ($21, Drugstore.com), which has a blend of honeysuckle and lychee to resist humidity and keep locks sleek.
Enjoy Straight Strands For Days
Now that you’ve got those straight locks, focus on making them last—after all, fewer blowouts means less damage in the long run. Swap your daily moisture-stripping wash for dry shampoo, like Oscar Blandi Pronto Dry Shampoo Spray ($21, Beauty.com).
To prevent frizz and static during sleep hours, switch to a silk pillowcase. Silk prevents split ends, doesn’t tangle hair like cotton (cotton actually tugs at individual strands, causing breakage), and even helps reduce the production of sebum, decreasing the chance of greasy hair.
And most importantly, hands off. “Avoid touching your hair frequently, as that can create friction,” Redman explains.
If You Must…Still can’t resist the flat iron? At least protect your hair. “Look for a treatment-based product, such as Kérastase Fibre Architecte ($42, Kerastase-usa.com), to apply to dry hair when using hot irons to insure optimal hair health. This not only protects your hair from the heat but also promises healthier hair over time, as the heat actually helps the nourishing ingredients penetrate deep into the cuticle layer of your hair.”
Will you forego the straightener for healthier, happier strands?
Some of the most common problems people face with their hair in the winter is dry ends/split ends, cold-induced frizz, dry scalp, static, limp hair, dull-colored hair, and the ever dreaded hat hair, according to DJ Quintero, Stylist at Serge Normant in New York City. Think all hair handles winter damage equally-think again. Those with thin/fine hair or color-treated hair are more prone to breakage in the winter.
The best thing you can do to keep hair silky and shinny is to moisturize with hydrating shampoos and conditioners. “Remember your hair is an extension of your scalp. Keep your scalp moisturized,” says Quintero. Want to really give your hair star treatment?- Quintero recommends rich hair treatments like Kerastase Masque Nutri-Thermique, $60. Great for all hair-types but especially those with dry and sensitive hair, this masque contains nourishing agents to prevent dehydration.
Using an anti-frizz volumizer is key to keeping winter’s harsh ways at bay. The Rene Furterer Myrrhea Anti-Frizz Silkening Fluid, $30, protects against heat damage while adding volume. Other smart tips from Quintero: use a little oil especially on the ends which are notorious for breaking. Also, don’t over use hairsprays with lots of alcohol; strands will be left greasy and flat.
No matter what your hair problem is this winter, Quintero’s got you covered, as he shares his best styling products and tools to kick any bad hair day.