Hair is often referred to as “crowning glory” because it enhances appearance and self-esteem. It’s a symbol of beauty, youth, and vitality. It’s also a way for an individual to express their style and creativity.
Additionally, hair is essential in everyone’s emotional, cultural, and social lives, providing protection, sensory input, and personal expression. It’s a vital aspect within the fashion and beauty industry, as stylists and colorists work to create unique and trendy hairdos. Meanwhile, ordinary people do different hairstyles and follow hair care practices deeply rooted in tradition and symbolism.
Physically, hair protects your scalp, regulates your body temperature, and serves as a barrier against elements. It also provides a sense of touch through hair follicles, playing a critical role in your body’s sensory system.
However, hair can be prone to damage due to various factors such as chemical treatments, pollution, poor nutrition, excessive heat styling, and other daily habits like blow drying.
5 Damaging Effects of Blow Drying on Hair and Scalp
Although blow drying is helpful, it can damage the hair and the scalp if done improperly. Here are five damaging effects of blow drying that you should know.
- Dryness and breakage
The heat from the blow dryer can dry out your hair, leading to breakage and split ends. When wet, hair cuticles are raised, making them more vulnerable to damage. The heat from blow drying can also cause the water to evaporate from your tresses quickly and lose its natural moisture, leading to dryness.
Constant exposure to high heat can cause heat damage, making your hair appear dull and lifeless. The high temperature can take away or alter your hair’s natural qualities, such as protein, making it brittle and prone to breakage.
To minimize hair damage, use heat protectants before drying and set your blow dryer to the lowest heat level possible. A diffuser attachment on the dryer can also distribute the temperature more evenly, preventing concentrated heat in one area. However, avoid using this method on your hair too often, and let it dry naturally when possible.
- Dry scalp
Your scalp can become dry due to the heat of blow drying, leading to itching, flaking, and other signs of dryness. The high temperature from the dryer causes the water to evaporate from your head quickly, causing it to lose its natural moisture. When it’s dry, it can be more prone to dandruff and other scalp conditions.
Moreover, constantly blow-drying your hair in high heat can damage your hair follicles, resulting in hair loss. It can also irritate and inflame your scalp, resulting in redness, itching, and flaking.
You can use a moisturizing shampoo, conditioner, and other scalp treatments to keep your scalp hydrated and healthy.
Nobody wants to have frizzy hair. However, with daily styling like blow drying, it’s unavoidable. When your hair is dry, the cuticles can be raised, creating a rough texture that can lead to frizz. The heat from the blow dryer can also change your tresses’ natural curl pattern. Additionally, your locks can puff up when you try to blow dry your locks when it’s still damp.
Use anti-frizz products like a leave-in conditioner or hair oil to keep your hair moisturized and less prone to frizz and greasiness. You should also avoid excessive styling products, such as hair gels, mousses, and sprays. Ensure that your hair is completely dry before blow drying, and keep the dryer moving to avoid concentrating heat on one area of your head.
Your hair is more susceptible to tangling and knotting when wet due to raised cuticles, making it more fragile. The heat and airflow from the dryer can cause your locks to knot, especially without using a brush or comb to detangle them while blow drying. If you have curly or coily hair, this process can cause your curls to become more defined, which may not be what you’re going for.
Detangle your hair with a wide-toothed comb before blow drying to avoid this problem. For curly or coily hair, apply a leave-in conditioner or hair oil to detangle and moisturize your locks. Additionally, avoid rubbing your hair with a towel after blow drying. Instead, use a microfiber towel to remove excess water gently.
- Color fading
People with color-treated hair want to prolong the shade of their locks for as long as possible. If you’re one of them, it’s crucial to avoid blow drying as often as possible, as it can potentially fade the shade of your tresses faster.
The heat from the dryer causes your locks’ cuticles to open up, allowing color molecules to escape. If you use a high-temperature setting when blow drying, your hair color will fade faster.
To prevent this problem, use a color-safe shampoo, conditioner, and hair mask to help lock in color and keep your hair hydrated. You can also visit and consult your stylist for other color-safe hair care products. Moreover, remember that color-treated hair is more fragile and sensitive than natural hair. So, proper care is crucial in keeping it vibrant and healthy.
Damaged Hair is Repairable
Damaged hair is inevitable, especially as you constantly expose yourself to various environmental factors, such as the sun, wind, and pollution, and everyday activities like combing, brushing, styling, and blow drying.
However, no matter how inevitable, damaged hair is still repairable. In some cases, you might not even need to blow dry at all. Learning about the effects of blow drying, like the ones listed above, is a good first step to protecting your hair in the long run. Knowing your hair type and ideal style can also help determine whether blow drying is good for you.
Additionally, using the right products and treatments can help bring your hair back to its lucid and healthy condition. Staying away from the dryer once in a while and letting your locks naturally dry is another excellent way to fix your tresses. Occasionally avoiding heat styling can give your locks a chance to repair and strengthen themselves.
Taking care of your crowning glory can increase your confidence and self-esteem and give a good first impression wherever you go.