How to blow-dry your hair, according to a pro
Hairstylists make blow-outs look so easy, right? When you try to do it yourself, though, you’re left with a frizzy mess and tired arms. In the hopes of making at-home blow-outs more attainable for us all, we reached out to one of our professional hairstylists, Betzy, who provided us with some tips on how to achieve an amazing blow-out. Let's be honest, we're never going to be able to blow-dry our hair like a professional, but hopefully these tips can elevate our DIY look just a little bit.
#1: start with a shower
Just like prepping for make-up with skincare, you need to prep your hair for a blow-out. All salon blowouts start with wet hair. Hop in the shower and shampoo your hair first, then apply conditioner to ends and lengths of your hair, avoiding the roots.
Betzy’s go-to duo is the L’oreal Eversleek Keratin Caring Shampoo/Conditioner ($10.99 each). You can find these products at most pharmacies and grocery stores.
Once out of the shower, you'll need to roughly dry your hair. Drying your hair correctly is the key to better blow-out results and you want your hair to be damp, not soaking wet, when you pick up the blow-drier, as this minimizes the amount of time your hair is exposed to heat. Press your hair with a towel to remove moisture or, as we've recommended before, opt for an old cotton t-shirt, which is more gentle on the hair. Whatever you do, do not rub your hair! Rubbing your hair can roughen its cuticles, causing it to break, which results in frizz. Once you’ve roughly dried, you’ll need to detangle your hair. Use a wide-tooth comb or a wet brush if your hair gets especially tangled when wet. Be gentle when brushing, start at the bottom and gently work your way up.
#3: apply products
Now it’s time to apply your heat protectant. If you use any type of heat styling tool, whether its a hairdryer, curling iron, or straightener, a heat protectant is an absolute must! Skipping heat protectant is equivalent to laying out in the sun without sunscreen and without this step, the heat from whatever tool you're using will dry out your hair and make it more prone to breakage. We do not want that! Our hairstylist Betzy’s favourite heat protectants are: HIS Professional Argan Oil Heat Protector (Amazon, $48.89), L’oreal Professional Mythic Oil (Shoppers, $24.99), and Moroccanoil Perfect Defense (Sephora, $32). Once you’ve chosen your heat protectant, make sure you apply the protectant properly, from roots to ends. You can apply more products during this step if you’d like. If you have straight or thin hair, you may want to add a volumizer to your roots to add body. If you have dry hair, you can apply a small amount of leave-in conditioner to the ends. However, be sure not to over saturate your hair with too many products!
#4: the blow-drier, part 1
Now that all your products are applied, it’s time to grab your blow-drier and blow-drier only. Need help choosing one? You don’t need to buy the most expensive to get the best results, you can get the same (if not better) results with an affordable brand as long as you're using the correct technique! Betzy’s top hair-drier brands are: Remington, Hot Tools, and CHI. During this step, you just want to pre-dry your hair on medium heat until it’s about 80% dry. Just use your hand, not a brush to achieve this. Pointing the dryer’s nozzle downward will help you get less frizz and overall smoother hair.
#5: choosing the right brushes
- Round brush: If you’re looking for a bouncy blowout with lots of shine, use a round brush to achieve volume, curls, and waves. A ceramic one is best, as they heat up and act as a curling iron to get a beautiful shape, while still smoothing. Consider trying the Moroccanoil ceramic brushes (Sephora, $32), as they come in a variety of different sizes. Note that the size of the barrel will affect your results. A small round brush creates a wavier style with more lift at the roots. While a large round brush simply delivers a smooth, bouncy style with soft definition.
- Paddle brush: This is best for detangling your hair with ease and comfort and also provides smoothening results without breaking the natural pattern of wavy or curly hair. If you want your hair smooth and straight, begin your blowout with this paddle brush and follow with a flat iron.
- Tail comb: This is a must-have! It helps get you nice, perfect, clean sections which makes everything so much easier.
#6: the blow-drier, part 2
Part your hair into small sections (clips come in handy here) and dry each section with the nozzle pointed downward to keep the cuticle and hair smooth. Generally, you'll want to start at the back of your head, then sides, and finish at the front. However, If you want extra volume, you can start with the front, then sides, and finish at the back. Start drying with high speed and temperature and as your hair begins to dry fully, reduce the heat. This will help to avoid over-drying and damaging your hair. If you’re using a round brush, roll the section of hair around the brush and apply the heat. If you’re in a rush, use a vented brush to get fast results. The holes on this brush allow the hot air to pass through to help speed up the drying process.
#7: apply finishing products
Once your hair is beautifully blown out, apply a dime-size amount of nourishing Argan or Keratin oil to the ends. If your hair tends to fall flat by the end of the day, use a hairspray. We recommend Sebastian Shaper Hairspray (Amazon, $23.19)
And voila! Your DIY blowout is complete. If this process seems intimidating, just remember practice (and patience) makes perfect.