Tuesday, June 29, 2010

How to Blow Dry Your Hair

Less Is More
Too much product is the number-one enemy of a good blowout. On wet hair don't rub dry with a towel; it causes frizz, comb a nickel-size amount of your favorite heat-protection gel or styling cream through strands. You can always use more product later, but you can't take any away. Avoid greasy buildup, especially if you have bangs by forgoing sprays and mousses near the hairline.

You can get 75 percent of the moisture out of your hair by rough drying. The more you do without a brush, the less pulling and damage you'll inflict in the long run. With your blowdryer set to medium, the high-temperature setting on most newer models is too hot for anything but thick, coarse hair. Dry hair, using just your fingers to tousle small sections while moving the heat around your scalp and strands. Prevent frizz by pointing the nozzle of the dryer toward the floor to help seal your hair cuticles and, hence, create shine.

With a mixed-bristle round brush, start drying 3- to 4-inch sections of hair closest to your face. Focus your energy on the front and top pieces, because this is what people see first. If you start at the bottom, your arms will be tired by the time you get to the most important part of your blowout. As you complete each section, roll the piece into a loose curl and secure it in place with an alligator clip. These barrel curls will add lift at the root while keeping dry hair separated from wet hair.

With your blowdrying complete and curls unpinned, spritz your hands with a light shine spray and rake your fingers through hair while pushing it upward to build bounce. People get into trouble with sprays because they hold them too close to their scalps. The product ends up in globs in some areas and completely missing from others. You get better results if you just use your fingers.

If your hair is too voluminous, re-dry the top sections with the dryer set to a higher heat setting. Then smooth your ends with a light conditioning oil.
If you lack volume, try steam curlers and set the sections that were pin-curled (step 3) for five to 10 minutes.

Maintain your blowout for an extra day (or two) by pulling your hair into a loose topknot or braid before bed. Use a scrunchie to hold it in place or else you'll wake up with ridges. And keep dry shampoo on hand to absorb sweat and oil. Even if you're in a hot spot, there's no excuse to settle for limp locks.

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