Should you use your straightener on dry or damp hair?
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Should you use your straightener on dry or damp hair?


It’s a very relevant question, especially in the morning, between shampooing, drying, straightening (and everything else) when time is counted down to the minute to get ready!

We have always heard that straightening irons are used on dry hair but for some time new products, with elaborate technologies, have appeared and are changing the situation!

While all straighteners can be used on dry hair, only some can be used on wet hair. So, rather have a team with dry or damp hair? We review the two methods. 

Can you use a straightener on dry hair?

Clearly yes, and this is even what is most recommended.

The majority of straighteners sold on the market are used on dry hair. Ideally, you should let your hair air dry and then straighten it so it won’t be exposed to heat for too long.

In real life, sometimes you need to go a little faster and blow dry! To limit breakage, set the electric dryer to a temperature that is not too high and finish with cold air.

It takes a little longer but it’s more respectful of the hair which, ultimately, will be less fragile. Obviously, if you’re really in a hurry, you can dry at a higher speed, but keep in mind that it shouldn’t be a habit.

In any case, do not forget to scrupulously apply a thermo-protective spray to the entire hair before starting the straightening stage.

This treatment will create a barrier on the surface of the hair fiber to protect it and also includes cosmetic benefits, so the hair will be shinier. 

The good gesture: the product is sprayed about fifteen centimeters then it is distributed on the whole with the help of a comb. You can then attack the smoothing strand by strand by sliding the iron gently.

The result is generally impeccable after a single pass!

Can you use a straightener on damp hair?

Yes, it is possible, but not with just any straightener! New generation straighteners have appeared and allow this.

On the one hand, there are the wet and dry; it is a specific new technology that allows the hair to be dried and straightened at the same time.

In practice, the straightener detects the humidity level of the hair and adapts the temperature of the plates accordingly. 

There is also the process of the steam straightener which is based on moist heat.

Here, the iron is equipped with a water tank and releases steam (much like an iron). Using a steam straightener on damp hair helps prevent dehydration of the hair fiber, a real risk with a conventional iron. 

Several brands now offer this type of device, such as Remington, GHD, or even L’Oréal Professionnel with the Steampod.

But above all, let’s be very clear about the definition of wet hair!

This is hair that has been towel-dried beforehand to remove most of the moisture.

In no case, we use a straightener, whatever it is, with soaked hair!

Two reasons for this: one, we are still talking about an electrical device, and two, it would be the best way to burn your hair and damage it permanently! In short, two consequent dangers!

If everyone agrees that these technologies save valuable time, their effectiveness is a little more disputed and some believe that the result is less convincing than when proceeding on dry hair.  

As with all heating devices, we remember that it is preferable to space out their use a little because, in the long run, they can damage the hair fiber. 

Image Credit: Image by diana.grytsku on Freepik

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