As you’re getting ready for a night out on the town, you twirl your curling iron through your hair and let it sit for a few seconds while you check your phone for the latest updates on tonight’s plans. Or at least, what you feel like is a few seconds. Before you know it, that burnt hair smell begins to make an appearance, causing you to throw your phone onto the counter and remove your curling iron pronto. Luckily, you haven’t lost any strands, but it’s clear that your burnt hair is in need of some major TLC. If you’re questioning how to address burnt hair—and avoid burning your hair in the future—you’ve come to the right place. Ahead, we share our top beauty tips for caring for and preventing burnt hair.
HOW TO CARE FOR BURNT HAIR
If you’re dealing with burnt hair, you don’t have to worry about making a big chop right off the bat. Depending on the amount of damage done, you may be able to salvage your strands without losing a large amount of (or any) length. Here are six hair care tips for burnt hair.
#1. BREAK UP WITH HOT TOOLS
It may be tempting to reach for your curling iron once the weekend rolls around again, but if you’re dealing with burnt hair, we’re going to need to have a talk. Just like your friends know what’s best for you in your love life, we happen to know what’s best for your burnt hair—and right now, that isn’t more heat-styling tools. Break up with your hot tools—or at the very least, go on a break until your hair is healthy-looking once more.
#2. OPT FOR HEAT-FREE STYLING
Just because you have to part ways with your straightener and other heat tools for the time being, doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice a trendy hairstyle. There are plenty of heat-free styles and products that can give your mane an envy-worthy look. To get that messy, I-woke-up-like-this hair that seems to always be in-style, rub a bit of the L’Oréal Paris Studio Line Overworked Hair Putty between your palms and work it through your hair. Scrunch and play with your hair for perfectly imperfect definition.
#3. USE A STRENGTHENING HAIR CARE SYSTEM
It’s safe to say that burnt hair isn’t in its strongest state, which is why you’ll want to switch your go-to shampoo and conditioner for a duo that will help fortify your hair. Try the L’Oréal Paris Elvive Dream Lengths Restoring Shampoo for Long, Damaged Hair and L’Oréal Paris Elvive Dream Lengths Conditioner for Long, Damaged Hair, which work together to strengthen long hair and help seal split ends.
#4. LOAD UP ON HAIR MASKS
Hair masks and treatments will also be your saving grace. To complete your hair care system, use the L’Oréal Paris Elvive Dream Lengths No Haircut Cream Leave In Conditioner. Not only does it help seal split ends, but it also prevents heat damage from styling for up to 450 degrees. That may not be a must with your hair in its current state, but when you do reach for your hot tools again, your strands will be prepared.
#5. TRY A DEEP CONDITIONER
Burnt hair could always use a boost in hydration, which is where a deep conditioner comes into play. If you notice your strands need some extra moisture, swap the above conditioner for a daily deep conditioner, like the L’Oréal Paris Elvive Total Repair 5 Rapid Reviver Deep Conditioner. It starts working on damaged hair in just one minute to help fortify each strand and prevent future breakage.
#6. HEAD TO THE SALON
When all else fails, turn to the pros. Your hairdresser will be able to tell if a haircut is necessary in order to salvage your burnt hair. They can also recommend in-salon conditioning treatments to help nourish your strands.
HOW TO AVOID BURNING YOUR HAIR WITH HEAT-STYLING TOOLS
Even with our top tips in your back pocket, you’re better off taking the necessary precautions to avoid burning your hair in the first place. Below, find three tips to avoid burning your hair with your favorite heat tools.
#1. USE HEAT PROTECTANT
A heat protectant is specifically designed to protect your strands from heat damage up to a certain degree. When you’re styling your hair with heat, it's essential. Before reaching for your hot tool of choice, spritz the L’Oréal Paris Advanced Hairstyle BLOW DRY IT Quick Dry Primer Spray throughout your hair.
#2. REMOVE DISTRACTIONS
That phone scenario we mentioned earlier likely isn’t far from the truth of how your burnt hair came to be. Whenever you plan to use hot tools on your mane, try to remove any distractions—including your phone. Use this as an excuse to practice mindfulness and simply be in the moment.
#3. SET A TIMER
If you’re one to still get sidetracked—we all get lost in our own heads now and then—set a timer on your phone. As a rule of thumb, try to keep your heat tools on your hair for the shortest amount of time possible and on the lowest heat setting that allows you to get your desired look.
You’ve tackled your burnt hair fiasco, now let’s cover another hair disaster that’s a bit too common: an overly orange hair color. Click through to your article, What Color Can You Use to Cover Orange Hair?
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