Take The Heat: Best Heat Protectants for Luscious Locks

Key Points

  • Heat protection is vital for keeping your hair healthy during and after hot tool use.

  • Damaging heat tools contribute to fried strands, breakage, and damage.

  • Heat protection is essential to buffer your hair and heated implements.

Save Your Locks With Heat Protectants

Heat tools are all the rage in 2023. Many different kinds of hot tools coif, tame, dry, brush, and smooth your hair to perfection. You might even use them as a daily grooming and styling ritual. Be aware, however, that using these implements every day inevitably leads to some form of heat-related damage. Regular use of specialized heat protection products keeps hair from showing the effects of hot hair tools.

Heat protection is the only way to help your hair handle the heat. Some of the tools can reach temperatures of 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Ouch! This level of heat abuse leads to scorched hair and singed hair cuticles. Pair that with any chemical treatment, and it is a recipe for a damaged mane of straw that ends up on the cutting floor of your stylist's salon.

Why Use Heat Protectants?

Heat protectant 101: Investing in a heat protectant is a small price to pay to keep healthy and thriving locks. You expose your hair to many forms of manipulation, both physical and chemical. On any given day, twisting, curling, pinning, rolling, braiding, and wind-tossing happen for the sake of style or out of necessity. Even casually throwing your hair into a messy bun or a scrunchie ponytail is a form of hairstyling. On top of that, some opt for regular color treatments to cover grays, or to switch up their appearance for fashion or fun.

Spritzing hair heat protectant

Heat tools have become the gold standard for coaxing — or forcing — hair into styles that defy gravity with serious texture or bouncy body. These heat-activated hairstyling tools can also create a glass-like silky straight look.

Most styles include one or more of these tools as part of the styling routine: wavers, crimpers, flat irons, curling wands, marcel irons, blow dryers, diffusers, and more!

Constant exposure to heat tools fries and degrades your mane in the worst way and has long-lasting permanent consequences.

A Good Heat Protectant Stops Damage Before It Starts

Heat damage breaks down chemical bonds and proteins in your hair's shaft. Without these essential building blocks, your hair's surface unravels and cracks, feeling less silken, frayed, and broken. Your hair starts to look frizzy and becomes less responsive to styling or coloring. You could experience hair fall, which can be traumatic.

A heat protectant in spray or serum form contains ingredients that shield your hair from excessive heat and maintain its overall health. The effectiveness of heat protectants varies.

Nikka Neubarth, chief operating officer and head of product development for Unite Hair, states that "a good protectant gives about 50% heat protection."

Keep in mind even a good product doesn’t completely prevent heat damage.

Hair Damage Is Permanent

Hair that becomes damaged beyond repair is permanently changed. There is no cure for heat-damaged locks except to cut off the breakage and wait for your hair to grow back. While some may not bat an eye over an unexpected style change, this is often a critical moment that leaves many mortified or beyond consolation.

The stylist’s chair is not an easy spot to suddenly find yourself without much choice but to chop those damaged locks. After all, your hair is an extension of you. It’s as much a part of your identity as any other beauty or fashion statement. Your attachment to your locks is undeniable.

Protecting your hair with a heat protectant is the difference between loving or just living with your style.

Using hair product on hair lengths

What Are the Best Heat Protectants?

The best heat protectant depends on what kind of hair you have. Is it dry and color-treated? Is it healthy or damaged? Is it curly or coarse? Is it textured or fine? Are you a person of color? Is it frizzy or damaged? Your hair has specific needs that determine which product works the best.

If you are searching for the best heat protectant products, look no further than this list of heat protectant sprays, serums, and creams.

The Best Heat Protectant for Normal Hair

If you have a normal hair type, it means that your sebum production level is neither oily nor dry. You have happy medium hair that performs well, is easy to style, and is not too frizz-prone or brittle. There is a good amount of natural sheen, a sign of hair health and strength.

The best heat protectant for your hair delivers all the goodness in ingredients that protect and further strengthen your normal hair.

Here are a few heat protectants to keep your locks healthy and lush.

Chi 44 Iron Guard Thermal Heat Protectant Spray

This red bottle is iconic. You’ll recognize it for its dependable salon-quality results. Chi 44 Iron Guard Thermal Heat Protectant is perfect for all hair types. It promises to seal the cuticle and provide pre-heat styling protection and strength.

Chi 44 Iron Guard contains moisturizing ingredients like hydrolyzed silk and wheat protein, which help to hydrate and nourish the hair. These ingredients prevent dryness and breakage, leaving hair looking and feeling healthy and nourished.

It also features ceramic and ionic technology, which smooths your hair and reduces frizz. This technology benefits those with curly or textured hair, types that are often more prone to frizz.

Chi 44 Iron Guard is lightweight and does not leave hair feeling heavy or greasy. This makes it easy to use and ideal for all hair types.

Proteins and amino acids are part of the formula, which help to strengthen the hair and protect it from environmental stressors. Strong hair is less prone to breakage and split ends, leading to healthier and stronger hair over time.

This weightless spray makes your hair silky, nourished, soft, and full of movement — so no crunching or dullness.

Consistent use of Chi's 44 Iron Guard is a great way to prevent any future hair damage, creating the styles you love without sacrificing the integrity of your hair.

Using hair heat protectant

Eco-Conscious Heat Protectants

You don't have to choose between sustainable products or healthy hair. Some brands offer effective products focusing on sustainable ingredients while keeping your hair safe from the burn.

Davines Melu Heat Shield for Hair

If you prefer to keep things clean with your hair regimen, Davines is one sustainable haircare brand to keep in mind. Melu Heat Shield for Hair is a luxury product designed for moisture retention and high-quality salon results for professionals or daily at-home use.

Melu’s ingredients offer all hair types an upscale experience. Spray it on before picking up your hair tools for the highest level of safe heat styling.

Key ingredients in Davines Heat Shield for Hair include organic red celery extract, which helps to protect hair from heat damage, and hyaluronic acid, which helps to hydrate and nourish the hair. The formula also contains a blend of natural ingredients, including organic horehound (Marrubium vulgare) extract, which helps to protect hair from environmental stressors, and biodynamic caraway seed extract, which helps to strengthen hair.

Lentil seed extract is a unique ingredient used in Melu Heat Shield. Specially sourced for Davines in Caltanissetta, Italy, lentil seed is high in serine and glutamic acids. Glutamic acid is a building block protein that restores moisture and hydration.

Spraying hair product on hair

Clean and Organic Haircare

Davines commits to using clean and organic ingredients in its products. They use only natural ingredients that are sustainable and ethically sourced, and they are committed to minimizing their impact on the environment. They are also a carbon-neutral company, meaning they offset its carbon emissions through various initiatives.

In addition to using clean and organic ingredients, Davines is also committed to sustainability in other aspects of its business. They use eco-friendly packaging materials and commit to reducing waste while minimizing their use of natural resources.

Heat Protection for Textured Strands

There are four basic hair types: straight, wavy, curly, and coily. Heat protection products afford extra protection and a barrier for heat-manipulated textured hair types, including wavy, curly, and coily. Using a helpful guide to identify your specific hair type ensures you get the best products for your hair.

Shea Moisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen & Restore Thermal Protectant

Expect to decrease breakage by up to 70 percent with Jamaican Castor Oil Strengthen and Restore Thermal Protectant Spray. This deep conditioning pre-heat treatment is perfect for textured hair that thrives with extra hydration.

This heat protectant spray contains Jamaican black castor oil, which is rich in fatty acids and vitamin E. It also contains peppermint oil, which helps soothe and invigorate the scalp, and shea butter, which helps to moisturize and protect hair from heat damage.

This thermal protectant spray protects hair from heat damage caused by styling tools like flat irons, curling irons, and blow dryers. It also strengthens hair and prevents breakage while moisturizing and nourishing, leaving your hair feeling healthy and vibrant.

Heat protectant for textured hair

Design Essentials Agave Lavender Thermal Protection Serum

Design Essentials is a professional salon and stylist brand that knows hair well. The Agave Lavender Thermal Protection Serum is one to try from the brand’s Agave and Lavender line.

The serum adds moisture and softness to strands. It contains agave extract, a natural humectant that helps draw moisture into the hair. The agave extract hydrates and softens dry, brittle hair, leaving it more manageable and easier to style. The serum's detangling agents help reduce the hair's angles and knots, making hair easier to comb through and style.

In addition to protecting hair from heat damage, this serum also helps to protect hair from environmental stressors like humidity and UV rays, which can cause damage and frizz.

Lavender oil calms and soothes the scalp, reducing itchiness and irritation. Wheat protein is another important ingredient in this serum, which helps to strengthen hair and protect it from damage. The protein reduces breakage and split ends, leaving hair looking and feeling healthier.

Benefits of Marshmallow Extract

Marshmallow extract — derived from marshmallow root — has many different applications used over thousands of years. Haircare benefits include anti-inflammation, moisturization, detangling, smoothness, and shine.

Anti-inflammatory properties soothe your irritated or inflamed scalp. This makes it a beneficial ingredient if you experience dandruff, psoriasis, or other scalp conditions.

Marshmallow root contains a high concentration of mucilage, a natural substance that moisturizes and softens hair. When used in haircare products, marshmallow extract improves the texture and appearance of dry, brittle, or damaged hair.

Marshmallow extract detangles hair and makes it easier to comb. This is especially helpful for people with curly or coily hair, which can be prone to tangling. It also adds shine, making your hair look healthier and more vibrant.

Creme of Nature Heat Protector Smooth and Shine Polisher

For an inexpensive alternative, try Creme of Nature's Heat Protector Smooth and Shine Polisher. This wonder serum gives your hair a gleaming silken result while eliminating frizz and banishing damage from extreme high-heat hair tools.

See improved manageability after use. Creme of Nature's signature "exotic shine" offers protection from heat temps to a maximum of 450 degrees, the highest setting for most electrical hot hair supplies on the market.

Spraying heat protectant on hair

This heat protectant serum contains argan oil, which is rich in antioxidants and vitamin E. This power combo nourishes and protects your hair from heat damage. The serum also contains wheat protein, which helps to strengthen hair, and olive oil, which helps to moisturize and add shine to hair.

Take the Heat

Heat protectants are your hair's best friend in combatting damage. Maintaining your hair's health comes down to selecting the best heat protectant product for your hair type.

Keep your hair looking and feeling healthy by consistently using heat protectants before applying a little sizzle to your style.

For more information about the best products for your hair type, subscribe to CosmeticsCenter.

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