How to Fix Heat Damaged Hair – MDhairmixtress: Dermatology Expert

Heat damaged hair can happen when your hair is exposed to high temperatures.  The high temperatures cause the disulfide bonds in the hair to break, which unbinds curls and coils and leaves the hair straight.   Thankfully, there are things you can do to help fix heat damaged hair.


Usually, using heat to straighten the hair will not permanently break the bonds in the hair.  Typically, heat only temporarily breaks hydrogen bonds in the hair.  These types of bonds reform when the hair is exposed to water or sweat, and the hair then returns to its naturally curly state.  By contrast, when disulfide bonds are broken, this is typically permanent.


Risks for Heat Damaged Hair

Fine or porous hair may be more susceptible to heat damage.  Using flat irons or curling irons that are too hot can also put your hair at risk for heat damage.  If you fail to use a heat protectant, you’re also more likely experience heat damaged hair. 


Areas of hair that are heat damaged tend to be more fragile.  They are more likely to appear limp, dull, tangle and can also experience more breakage.  Heat damaged hair may also be more likely to break than to shed.



Preventing Heat Damage

  • Avoid excessive heat, try not to go above 350°.
  • Don’t apply heat more than once per week.
  • Try air drying your hair in twists or bantu knots to stretch it before blow drying
  • Always use heat protectant.
  • Keep your blow dryer 5 inches or more from the surface of your hair.
  • Do a final cool water rinse of your hair to help seal the cuticle before drying.
  • Set your wet hair on large magnetic rollers and sit under a hooded dryer (instead of blow drying and straightening).


Fix Heat Damaged Hair

You can always cut heat damaged hair off.  But you don’t have to!  While it’s true that you can’t make bring back all of your curls, there are  things that you can do to boost the moisture and strength of your hair and help fix heat damaged hair.


1. Protein Treatments

Protein treatments fill in the weak areas of the hair shaft, so that the hair is less likely to break.  Aphogee protein treatment is popular and affordable, and many people swear by the strength it imparts to their hair.


2. Trim Split Ends

Split ends travel and will continue to weaken your hair.  Don’t leave them to cause more damage.


3. Use Moisturizing Products

Use deep conditioners and leave in conditioner rich in natural oils and butters to help impart your hair with added elasticity and moisture.  Conditioners with avocado oil, argan oil and shea butter can improve the luster and health of the hair.


4. Avoid Drying Products

Be cautious with drying sulfate shampoos and beware of hair products that contain potentially harmful ingredients such as mineral oil and petrolatum. These products can coat your hair and exacerbate your breakage.  If you prefer to use a shampoo with sulfates, consider alternating co-wash shampoos with your sulfate shampoo.

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