Is your natural hair damaged or broken?
If you rely on heated styling tools and aren’t using some sort of heat protectant, you’re being your own worst enemy.
Blow dryers, flat irons, and curling irons can weaken and destroy your hair, leaving it lifeless and less than vibrant.
How do I know? Because it happened to me.
I was destroying my own hair by blow drying and curling it almost every day without applying any type of heat protectant. I began to search for the best heat protectant for natural hair and I came across quite a few awesome products.
Keep reading for my detailed reviews of heat protectants to find which is the best heat protectant for you.
The Best Heat Protectants For Natural Hair
ArtNaturals Thermal Hair Protector shields your natural hair from the effects of heated styling tools and the sun.
The spray infuses your hair with natural oils, including natural extracts of rosemary, peach, thyme, sage, and ginseng.
It’s a leave-in conditioner and heat protectant in one, which I absolutely loved.
This is a great heat protectant for natural black hair because of its calming and soothing ingredients that will add plenty of moisture to your hair.
Instanatural was one of my favorite heat protectant sprays that I tried.
It made my hair soft, healthy and beautiful. It’s infused with argan oil, known for its beneficial effects on natural hair of all types.
It also has sunflower oil and castor oil and the company is proud of their dedication to making products with natural ingredients.
I loved this heat protectant for natural hair and I’m sure that you will, too.
This is a really professional product at a great price.
It features Advanced Lightweight Two-Layer Protection Technology that penetrates hair follicles and repairs existing heat damage, making it the best heat protectant for natural hair that’s been damaged.
This was one of the first heat protection products that I tried and my hair was definitely in bad shape.
But using this product for a couple of weeks proved that not only does it prevent more damage but it really does help to heal from the inside out.
My hair was smoother and softer than it had been in years.
Here’s another heat protectant for natural hair that really does work wonders.
It even protects your hair from humidity and doubles as a leave-in conditioner.
If that’s not enough for you, it also works as a detangler. This is an all-in-one product that saved me so much time in the morning.
I did find that this particular product worked better if I sprayed it onto my hands and combed it through my hair rather than spraying it directly onto my hair.
But it sure did make my hair feel soft.
I even straightened my natural hair twice in one day because of a late-night date and it was still working hard to protect my hair hours after applying it.
If a spray isn’t for you, here’s a hair mask geared towards hair repair and heat protection.
It’s the best heat protectant for natural hair of its kind and strengthens hair from roots to ends and really helps to defrizz and detangle hair.
I still use this mask every couple of weeks to ensure that my hair is remaining as healthy and moisturized as possible.
Using this mask is such a calming experience as well.
Apply the mask to your natural hair, wrap a warm towel over your head and relax for about 15 minutes before rinsing out.
It’s a mini-spa experience and a great option for no-heat hairstyles.
I’ve always loved Tresemme products. They get the job done without robbing your bank account.
This awesome heat protectant for natural hair helps with breakage, frizz, and dryness. It can repair up to two years of damage and is serious about heat protection.
This spray does have a larger than normal spray nozzle so it can be easy to go overboard. Keep this in mind and you’ll be just fine.
What girl doesn’t like a Brazilian Blowout?
If I could, I would be in my salon every week getting one! But instead, I stick with Oribe.
Their Royal Blowout Heat Styling Spray is a bit on the pricy side but it’s worth every penny. If you’re looking for a heat protectant for flat ironing natural hair, this is it.
It transforms my hair when it’s at its worst to stunning, straight locks with tons of volume. It also repairs split ends and nourishes and softens from the inside out.
If your budget allows, this is the best heat protectant for natural hair in its price bracket.
They broke the mold when they made this. It’s a great all natural heat protectant for hair that you’ll fall in love with.
It has just about every ingredient that you could want, including coconut oil, keratin, chia seed oil, argan oil, sweet almond oil, and jojoba oil.
It strengthens, nourishes and shines hair all while keeping it safe from your favorite heated styling tools.
I absolutely loved the smell of this spray but, more importantly, it didn’t leave my hair oily like some heat protectants can, especially with this many oils included.
Instead, my natural hair was soft and protected. It’s a great heat protectant for fine hair.
This is a pretty basic natural heat protectant spray but it does what you need it to do.
It’s enriched with silicone, aloe, vitamin E and even sunscreen to protect hair from sun damage.
My hair seemed instantly smoothed after using this spray.
Because it’s a straightening serum, it’s great for anyone with super curly hair to use before styling with a flat iron.
It helps you get the look that you’re after while protecting your natural hair at the same time.
What is Heat Protectant?
Heat protectant is a hair product that can minimize damage to your hair from heated styling tools.
Excessive heat can reduce moisture and lead to brittle hair that looks unhealthy and is more prone to breakage. Heat protectant creates a protective barrier that can keep your hair healthy and looking its best.
The majority of store-bought heat protectants include Cyclomethicone and dimethicone, silicones that coat your hair and replenish moisture.
How Does It Work?
Heat can damage your hair in several ways. Any of the following can occur:
- Hair can turn brassy
- Hair can become weaker
- Hair can crack and fray
- Hair can dry out
Heat protectants work by thinly coating each strand and slowing down heat conduction. They can also distribute heat more evenly, lessening the chance of damage.
Silicones like cyclomethicone and dimethicone have low thermal conductivities. This enables them to transfer heat slowly. So even though you’re blasting hot air from a blow dryer, your hair isn’t being overwhelmed.
Just remember that heat protectants aren’t impenetrable. The best way to prevent heat damage is to avoid heated styling tools all together. But if you rely on them to give you the look you love, some type of heat protectant product is a must.
Heat Protectant For Natural Hair Pros & Cons?
While I will always tell you that a heat protectant of some sort is necessary, there are still a few pros and cons to consider before choosing to use one.
Consider the following if you’re trying to decide between using heat protectant products or avoiding heated styling tools as your choice of protection:
Pros of Heat Protectants For Natural Hair
Hair Is Kept Moisturized
Moisturized hair is the first step towards healthy hair. Keeping your locks quenched also prevents frizz, especially on those dry, humid days.
All Day Conditioning
Of course, hair protectants protect your hair. But they keep working throughout the day to keep your hair looking its best.
Many people notice an almost instant improvement in sleekness and shininess when they start to use heat protectants for the first time.
Prevent Split Ends
Heat protectants can help you extend the time between trims by sealing split ends and helping to prevent them from happening in the first place.
Skip A Wash
If you skip several days between hair washing (which most people should), you might find yourself looking for ways to add a fresh scent to your hair.
Heat protectants usually smell great, no matter the brand you use. So spray a little on dry hair and give your hair a quick blow dry or straightening session to refresh and rejuvenate.
Cons of Heat Protectants For Natural Hair
When it comes to heat protectants, you get what you pay for.
While there are some cheap options on the market, they don’t always have the best formulas for protection.
If you blow dry or straighten your hair on a daily basis, the cost of your heat protectant can add up.
Using any type of product on a consistent basis can eventually lead to buildup. This can weigh your hair down and make it appear lifeless and dull. Combat this by using a clarifying shampoo every so often.
Can Dry Hair Out
I know, it seems unfair. How can a product that’s supposed to protect your hair be bad for it?
But the sense of security that comes from using a protectant can lead some people to style their hair with heat too often.
As mentioned earlier, the only real way to keep your hair healthy is to avoid overwhelming it, whether it be with product, heat, or styling techniques.
If you notice your hair is becoming brittle, even though you use a heat protectant, it’s time to switch brands or give up the heat for a bit.
What Causes Heat Damage To My Natural Hair?
If your natural hair feels dry and brittle or you’ve noticed excessive split ends and breakage, there’s a good chance that your hair is heat damaged and you need the best heat protection spray out there.
This damage is often irreversible so the best plan of action is to prevent the damage from happening in the first place.
There are several causes of heat damaged hair, depending on how you utilize heat styling tools in your hair routine.
- Having Fragile Natural Hair
If your hair is extra curly or very fine, you’re already set up for heat damage. Adding more stress in the form of heat can lead to extreme damage.
- Lower Levels of Sebum
If your body’s natural production of sebum has been lowered for any reason, your hair can become dry. Just as a dry log burns more than a fresh one, your hair is more prone to damage if it lacks moisture.
- Direct Heat
Here’s the obvious reason. Applying heat to your hair can drain moisture from your hair and cause cuticles to be stripped off, leaving your hair even more vulnerable the next time you use heat.
- High Temperatures
Using heated styling tools can be dangerous enough but if you use them at too high of a temperature, you’re taking even more risks. But don’t think that lowering the temperature is enough. When you use a lower temperature, you might end up running your flat iron over your hair several times instead of once, increasing the chances of damage.
- No Heat Protection Products
Just about all heat damage can be prevented if you use the right products. There are plenty of different natural heat protectant products on the market, including conditioners, sprays, and creams, that can protect your hair and make sure that it stays healthy and beautiful.
Do I Apply Heat Protectant Before Or After I Straighten My Hair?
The best heat protectant spray should always be applied before you straighten. Get into the habit of always spraying your hair before picking up your styling tool in order to prevent damage.
How To Apply Best Heat Protectant For Natural Hair
It’s best to deep condition your hair before applying heat protection spray. This will allow the product to penetrate the cuticles and be absorbed.
You should also try to use the spray on clean, dry hair. There are exceptions though.
If you use a blow dryer and round brush to style your hair, you can spray the heat protectant on damp hair.
However, you might have to reapply a few times as you dry to make sure that your hair is still protected.
To spray the heat protection spray, start by dividing your hair into small sections using a brush.
Working in small sections, spray the heat protectant for natural hair several inches away from your head so that it isn’t overly concentrated in one spot. Spray once for thin hair and several times for thick hair.
Repeat this, working in small sections, until all of your hair is covered. Wait a few minutes to allow the spray to slightly dry and then begin styling with confidence.
There’s no need to pack away your flat iron or curling iron just because your hair is damaged.
Once you know how to protect your hair with the best heat protection spray, you’ll be able to use heated styling tools safely and with confidence, all while keeping your hair healthy, manageable and gorgeous.