Blow Drying Secrets from the Pros
Moms and hair stylists make blow drying hair look easy. Even the YouTube videos with blow drying tips look effortless. Yet, when you pick up your hairdryer, it feels like you're either aiming the hot air at your head and hoping for the best, or spending so much time with a brush and dryer that your arms feel like they're going to fall off. Well, fear not. Kidzworld consulted one of our favorite hair experts, Suzie Bond*, for quick and easy blow-drying tips.
A diffuser adds volume Courtesy of Conair
A good dryer is lightweight and has multiple heat settings and speeds Courtesy of Conair
An ionic round brush reduces static and helps make hair shinier Courtesy of Conair
Step 1: Clean Hair
"Great styling starts with clean slippery hair," Suzie tells us. "Make sure to condition long ends and don't rinse it all off. That way you have some protection for heat tools". Towel dry your hair by gently squeezing the moisture from your hair. Don't rub or scrub the hair with a towel -- that will create knots.
Step 2: Detangle
"Detangle your hair with a wide tooth comb," Suzie advises. Most people start at the hair root by their scalp and tug down with a comb to get the knots out, and this works fine if you have no knots. Most people have at least a few snags in their hair, especially when it's wet. To detangle, pick up a section of hair and, starting at the ends, comb down. If you hit a snag, pull the hairs apart gently rather than tugging with a comb. Pulling the hairs apart, as though you're detangling necklaces in your jewelry box, will help them separate without breaking the ends. Once the ends are detangled, work your way up with the comb through each section, then comb hair all the way through to make sure you didn't miss any snags. Squeeze your hair gently in the towel again to get out the extra moisture.
Step 3: Add Product (or not)
"Product" is what stylists call the goop, sprays, mousse, gel and mud you can add to hair to texturize and set your styles. Don't use any product the first time you dry your hair to see what type of product, if any, you may need.
"To build volume on fine hair, apply a thickening product, like Texture Expert's Densite, at the root area. Make sure you hold all sprays about 3 inches from the hair or it will get concentrated in one area at the scalp," says Suzie. Follow all directions on the products you use, especially where they tell you how much to use. For example, if it says "use a dime-size amount", but the dime-size amount doesn't cover your whole head, add a little water into your hand before applying it so you can distribute it more evenly throughout your hair. When choosing what product you use, look for products made especially for heat-styling if you plan on blow-drying your hair all the time. Many products are made to activate when you use heat for styling.
Step 4: Blow Dry
For extra volume
Here's Suzie's expert advice on adding volume while drying: "Use a vent brush or Denman to brush the wet hair up off scalp and then tip your head upside down." Aim the dryer at your scalp and dry hair on medium heat with a diffuser attachment. Pile hair, a few sections at a time, onto the cup of the diffuser and let the air gently dry it as it sits there. "Once hair is dry at the scalp and in the middle, flip back up and switch to a round brush. Your hair should wrap 1.5 times around the brush. If it goes around more, you could get hair caught in the brush. For added protection from humidity, give a thorough spray with L'Oreal Professionnel's Infinium 2. Tip upside down and shake hair during application to keep hair moveable!"
For a sleek, straight look
Using a round brush, take 1-inch-wide sections of hair and roll it up 1.5 times around the brush. More will get it caught. Aim dryer fitted with a concentrator nozzle at your hair by the scalp and move it up and down the hair that's exposed while pulling the hair straight with your brush. Be sure not to aim the dryer at your scalp, or you could burn your sensitive skin! Keep the dryer moving to avoid burning your hair as well. When the top part of the section is dry, turn the brush one time and unroll it slightly. Pulling the brush down enough to keep the hair straight, dry the second part of the section. Dry the hair around the brush next before removing the brush. Finish with a light finishing spray if your hair tends to frizz up later in the day. Hold the spray 6-inches away from your head as you spray and shield your eyes to avoid getting hairspray in your eyes.
*Suzie Bond is a salon owner, stylist and L'Oreal Professionnel Artist at PERFECT 5th in Mooresville, NC
Have Your Say
How often do you blow dry your hair? Do you find it easy or frustrating? What's your favorite hair care product? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!