Styling your hair with hot tools can help you get those fantastic curls or salon-straight hair. However, with regular exposure to high heat, you might damage the strands leaving you with plenty of split ends and frizz. The best way to avoid this is by using the best heat protectant for your strands to save them from overexposure to high temperatures.
What is a Heat Protectant?
Heat protectants are the products that provide a barrier between your hair and the high temperatures of styling tools, whether you are using a blow dryer, curling iron, or a hair straightening tool. They can even make your hair feel soft and smooth as they seal your cuticle so your strands won’t be vulnerable to blasts of hot air or high temperatures from curling irons or hair straighteners.
They come in various forms from sprays, to leave-ins, to creams. There are some that can be applied after a shower or need to be rinsed after. You can even come across products that combine styling cream, heat protection, and conditioner. It is best that you look for a protectant that will work specifically for your hair type since the wrong one may lead to weighing heavily on your mane.
How Does It Work?
High-grade heat protectants contain specific ingredients such as humectants which are known to fight off frizz and split ends, amino acids that deliver nutrients needed to strengthen hair, and plant extracts, and natural oils that are known to seal the cuticle of your hair to reduce breakage. When applied to your hair, they will create this protective barrier that will reduce the damage to your mane significantly especially when you will be using styling tools on them. They need to be applied prior to using any heat-generating equipment.
There are certain hairstyles that will require the use of a protectant such as straightening your mane, aiming for that slick back style, and even beachy waves too just to name a few. Any time that you use a styling tool you should apply a heat protector first to minimize any damages that may be caused by high temperatures.
How to Choose a Heat Protectant for Hair
If you want to protect your hair from heat damage, you should definitely look for a heat protectant product to include in your list of hair products to get. However, there are dozens of heat protectants available in the market that it can be tough to find the right one for you. The best way to narrow down your options is by considering the following factors:
- Offers Maximum Protection from Heat.
Since you are looking for a heat protector, you should choose one that will be able to offer you the highest level of protection against heat. One particular ingredient that should be listed is silicone since it plays a part in coating your mane with a protective covering that will lessen the possible damage. If you are going for a heat protectant spray, you should check if there are dimethicone and Cyclomethicone. This two keep your mane feel smooth and soft.
- Fights Frizz.
It is also a good idea to look for heat protectant sprays that come with ingredients that can tame or keep frizz at bay. This is essential when you are going to use a hair straightening tool since the hot plates may cause your hair to become burned. Applying a protectant against heat can help keep frizz at bay.
- Moisturizing Properties.
Your hair will need moisture if you will be constantly exposing it to high temperatures. With enough moisture, you will be able to correct any damage to your mane. Like it was mentioned before, there are products to protect hair that also come with moisturizing properties which you should look for. Ingredients like shea butter, aloe vera, or glycerin will help lock in the moisture thus minimizing the effects of styling tools on your mane.
- Check for Keratin.
Since our hair is made of a protein called keratin, it is only right that you look for protectants that contain this ingredient. One reason why you should look for a product that has this feature is that it will help strengthen your mane by locking in the moisture.
If you want to buy something to protect your hair against heat, then do not forget to consider the price of the products. The expensive ones don’t automatically mean that they will be effective. This is why you need to compare features and prices before making any purchases. There are those that are priced cheaply but can give good protection from intense heat.
A Review of the Best Heat Protectants
Heat damage caused by constant exposure to high temperatures while styling your hair can cause frizz and split ends. Fortunately, reducing the impact of heat exposure is possible if you choose the right heat protector for your mane. If you need help with finding the right products, you might want to start with these.
HSI PROFESSIONAL Argan Oil Heat Protector
This thermal protection spray can provide coverage to your mane so that, even when you expose it to temperatures reaching up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit, you won’t worry about ending up with plenty of frizz. The argan oil ingredient creates this lightweight mist that you can spray on your hair prior to styling it. This way, when you use a blow dryer, hair straightening tool, or curling iron, your mane will be well protected. You can also use it as a leave-in conditioner if you like. When you apply it, you will have a smooth and frizz-free hairstyle.
Another reason why you should get this argan oil heat protector is that it works both for natural and colour-treated hair. If you are worried about harsh chemicals like sulfates, parabens, and phosphates, you’ll be happy to know that HSI professional doesn’t have them. Spray this on and enjoy its hydrating and detangling properties if you want your hair looking amazing.
- Argan oil provides your hair with sufficient coating that will keep the heat from damaging your hair.
- It can be used as a leave-in conditioner.
- It moisturizes, smoothens, and protects your mane from damages caused by high heat.
- Some users find that it is too heavy on their hair.
- It can dry some hair types.
- The baby scent can be overpowering for some users.
Pureology Colour Fanatic Leave-in Conditioner Hair Treatment
Pureology has produced a great heat protectant that can provide you with several benefits. For starters, it helps detangle your mane so you won’t have to struggle with getting knots when you blow-dry. Another advantage of using this leave-in conditioner is that it keeps frizz at bay. This is important if you want to achieve smooth looking hairstyle. It can give protection against heat up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. If you are fond of styling your tresses with a variety of styling tools, it would be a good idea to add Pureology to your arsenal.
What else is there to like about this item? Well, it is made from pure vegan ingredients meaning that there are no harsh chemicals present here. Don’t worry about using it on your colour-treated mane since this will still serve you by keeping heat damage at bay. You can spray it on damp hair or apply when you have airdried your mane. Either way, it will serve as effective protection against high temperatures.
- It detangles and adds shine to your mane.
- Can provide protection from heat reaching up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
- It is safe to use even when you have coloured your hair.
- It feels heavy on the hair when applied.
- The scent can be overpowering at times.
- It doesn’t detangle hair effectively especially when you have thick hair.
Kenra Professional Thermal Styling Spray
Another option to consider for the best heat protectant is from Kenra. This thermal styling spray lets you style, curl, and straighten your hair while sealing it afterwards. Spraying this solution on your mane before using any of your favourite hot tools can prevent your hair from getting heavily damaged. What’s great about this product is that it doesn’t leave any sticky solution on the surface of your hair. You can blow-dry, curl, straighten, or any other style that you have in mind.
Frizz and flyaways are fairly common when you use any styling tool especially when you don’t use any heat protectant spray. Kenra’s lightweight spray can save your mane from the effects of heat which is why it is a great addition to your styling routine. I like that it holds your hairstyle for hours. Simply spray the product liberally on each section of your mane as you curl and straighten it not only to lock in the moisture but also to retain its style throughout the day.
- A lightweight spray that doesn’t leave any sticky residue.
- Controls frizz and flyaways after application.
- Can help hold your style throughout the day.
- It is a bit pricey.
- It doesn’t hold hairstyle very well as promised.
- It functions more like a hairspray rather than a thermal spray.
BIOLAGE Styling Thermal Active Spray
If you are seeking heat protection for your hair, BIOLAGE styling thermal active spray is worth checking out. Using hot tools can have a drying effect on your strands not unless you choose to protect it with the right heat protectant. Fortunately, BIOLAGE is one particular brand that protects hair against intense heat coming from hot tools. When sprayed on each section of your hair, you will be able to keep them smooth, soft, and nourished thus giving it the bounce and lift that it deserves.
Spray this solution on damp or wet hair before you style it or you can apply it on dry hair too especially starting at the roots. Use your favourite hot tool to give your mane the lift, curls, or any other style that you are aiming for. What else is there to like about this product? If you are conscious about the environment, you will be happy to know that it doesn’t contain any harsh ingredients. So spray away to give your mane the protection it deserves while you blow-dry, straighten, or curl it.
- Provides ample protection from high temperatures coming from different hairstyling tools.
- Can be used on damp, wet, and dry hair.
- Protects against symptoms of damage caused by tools that generate heat.
- One user complained that applying this solution made her hair difficult to brush.
- The smell can be too strong for some users.
- It tends to be sticky.
Living Proof – Restore Instant Protection Spray
If you have fine hair, you will want heat protection to keep your mane from becoming heavily damaged when you use your hair straightener or curling iron for that matter. Fortunately, Living Proof has created a weightless protectant for your mane that is easy to apply too. It features Healthy Hair Molecule plus a conditioning agent that adds shine and even polish to your hair so you don’t have to worry about your mane becoming dull with all the heat it is exposed to. It can even absorb UV heat that helps with minimizing the amount of damage your hair getting not just from a curling or flat iron but also from too much sun.
It doesn’t contain any harsh chemical compounds such as parabens, phthalates, and silicones plus it is safe to apply on colour-treated hair too. It is a cruelty-free product that can make a fine addition to your arsenal if you want to protect your mane from too much blow-drying, straightening, or even curling for that matter. The best way to apply this item is to spray on damp hair before you start introducing heat. To take advantage of its UV protection feature, spray it afterwards.
- Living Proof restore instant is weightless so there won’t be any tell-tale signs of residues on the surface.
- Adds shine and polish to your hair to make them fresh and healthy to look at.
- It doesn’t contain any harsh chemicals but rather it is a cruelty-free hair styling spray.
- It can leave your hair feeling dry when used often.
- It doesn’t coat hair evenly.
- It doesn’t work well in taming frizz.
Cantu Shea Butter Thermal Shield Heat Protectant
Cantu shea butter thermal shield heat is another product that you should take the time to try out as it is designed for those with textured hair. Styling your wavy hair using curling rods or wands is all well and good, but being exposed to heat can damage it at some point. You can prevent heat damage from happening by applying this protectant by Cantu on your hair. What you’ll love about this item is that it contains shea butter which is commonly known for delivering plenty of moisture not just to your skin, but to your hair as well.
Cantu’s heat protecting spray can withstand heat up to 425 degrees Fahrenheit so you don’t have to worry about exposing your hair to such temperatures. The shea butter is the one that keeps your hair soft and smooth regardless of your hair type and style. Be proud of your natural curls and waves by using Cantu thermal shield heat protectant.
- Ideal for those who have natural hair.
- Can withstand temperatures up to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Makes hair smooth, soft, and nourished.
- A customer reported that the spray was too watery.
- The fragrance is too heavy.
- It can dry hair because of its alcohol ingredient.
Exposing your hair without proper protection is inviting problems in the long run. It doesn’t really matter if your fine hair or thick mane, protecting it from high temperatures can keep hair damage at bay. Now if you are wondering which is the best on the list, I would HSI Professional. The argan oil ingredient not only creates a protective barrier but it also nourishes hair from the roots to the tips. It is lightweight but gets the job done of taming your mane.