Top Method for Flat Ironing Natural Hair

by Emilia Obiekea of

The biggest issues for naturals when flat ironing
-Premature Reversion
-Maintaining Moisture
-Avoiding Heat Damage

Maintaining my hair when I have flat ironed it used to be a losing task. I have found that moisturizing my hair starts before ever applying any direct heat. This is my go to process:

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The RIGHT Tools and Products for Natural Hair Blow Outs

by Shelli of Hairscapades

I was a busy little bee this weekend, hitting three different stores (one twice), in order to get the items I needed for my impending blow-out. I made the appointment for my Afro puffy twists for this week and I was finally faced with the fact that I needed to make some decisions about my hair prep. I read CurlyNikki’s post on Flat Ironing Tips and recognized the importance of the right products, good techniques and the proper tools. I’d been ruminating over what heat protectant to use and whether I would use a blow dryer, use a comb attachment, try the tension method, braid, twist or attempt a roller set to stretch … decisions, decisions!

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Smoke Points- Why Oil Doesn't Work as a Heat Protectant #ScienceTho

Most curlies know about heat protectants that will lessen the damage from heat styling within reasons. Whether you blow-dry, flat iron, or use a curling iron, you need a heat protectant. I cannot remember being told this when I was relaxed, so I am sure I was frying my hair to death back then, but now everyone knows to use them. With the current increased interest in natural products, more women are looking for natural alternatives in their entire regimens.
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by Susan Walker of DrWalkerWellness

What began as a curious investigation into a technique and system many naturals are using to style their hair ended in anger and frustration and a revelation that as naturals, some of us a don’t feel as though our specific hair texture is “good” enough.

I’m going to preface this post by saying that my own personal bias is woven throughout because of my own personal hair journey and the thoughts, feelings and perceptions of beautiful natural hair I’ve had to fight through when it comes to my hair, to get to the place I’m at right now. It’s candid and to the point. And it may offend. You can stop here or continue to read on.

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Natural Hair: 3 Quick Styles for a Blow-Out

 Tiffany Nichols writes:

For many naturalistas a blowout is typically done right before you straighten your hair.  However, many women would love some styling options outside of a flatiron.  In this video, I share 3 simple yet creative looks to try when you do your next blowout!

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4 Things A Flat Iron Should Have for Healthy Natural Hair

by Bri of Naturally Fierce

When I began the search to find the best flat irons for natural hair I thought it would end with one quick trip to the search engine box...Oh was I wrong. I dived the irons into a massive list - -ceramic, ionic, tourmaline, titanium, nano, and silver, only to come out with one conclusion. Flat irons all do the same thing, but the results will vary depending on the brand and how you use them. Before we get to the 'how' part, make sure your flat iron has the following:

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A New Way to Blow Dry 4c Natural Hair!


Nappy Fu writes:

"Sometimes a Natural likes to rock straight styles, better yet, semi straight styles. However, if your natural hair is kinky and coily this can be a challenge. Have you ever done a blow-out in which your hair looks like you didn’t just spend two hours blow drying section by section? Yes honey, been there done that. This was my experience each year I did my 'End of the Year Blow Out'. To make matters worse my hair would feel brittle and dry! Horrible combination for my type 4c hair. Who has time for this? Not I, and I knew I had to do something about it. I had to figure out how to blow dry kinky hair while maintaining softness and movement in my hair."

Nappy Fu told me that she had relied on the Comb Method in the past, and that the high heat and excessive combing wasn't letting her be great.  After some rather intense Youtube research, she came across a new method which-

• leaves hair semi straight
• reduces damage to cuticle layer
• reduces moisture loss
• avoids tangled ends
• does not involve combing or brushing through each section while blow drying
• gives volume and no frizz (or minimal frizz)
• leaves hair feeling soft and moisturized
• will allow hair to easily revert back

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Straightening Natural Hair

Watch as Mini Marley straightens her naturally curly hair!  To get the look she used--

-Shea Moisture's Curl Mouse:
-A Denman Brush
-Large Rollers/ Clips
-QT Performance Flatiron:
-A Comb

Heat Protection 101: Fry Eggs, Not Hair.

Fall is approaching and some curlies are ready to fry, dye, and lay those curls to the side, but this should be approached with caution. I know you want to use that edge control to get that swoop game tight this season, but there is a right way and a wrong way to do it! Some curlies are anti-straight but one thing is for sure, all curlies are pro “don't put me in a box” so let’s support one another’s choices. If you choose to take advantage of the cold weather for long-lasting straightened styles, then you should do so with the utmost care to protect your curls, coils, and waves. 

The Right and Wrong Way to Use Glycerin for Hair

It seems that naturally curly folks have a love/hate relationship with glycerin. There is a lot of information, and misinformation, about this seemingly simple substance. I thought I’d shed some light on the chemical makeup of glycerin and how it affects curly hair specifically.

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Dry Natural Hair and How to Fix It!

At some point in our natural hair journey, we've all been there. Or maybe you're there now, and that's why you're reading this. Whatever the case may be, nobody likes the feeling of dry, crispy, overworked hair that breaks off into thin wisps at the slightest touch.

But before we get in to a product frenzy, let's get a few things out of the way. First, a regimen check. If you're experiencing chronic dryness, ask yourself the following:

When was the last time you clarified your hair?

How often are you deep conditioning?

How are you layering your products after styling?

How often are you using heat?

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Heat Protectants- Silicones Are Our Friends

In my Fry Eggs, Not Your Hair experiment I demonstrate the effects of heat transfer on an egg to emphasize the importance of incorporating a heat protection product into your thermal styling regimen. If this demonstration does not convince you that heat damage is real, I really do not know what will. Heat softens the keratin in hair to become more pliable; however, if you are not careful, too much heat penetrating the hair too fast will cause water to boil on the inside of the hair shaft, which will instantly weaken the hair. If you are going to use heat on your hair, there is no way that you can completely eliminate the damaging effects that it will have, but you can decrease the amount of damage by protecting yourself.

Curling Wand Tutorial for Natural Hair

Watch as Michelle demonstrates how she achieved these amazingly volumious curls on blown-out hair. 

Will Grape Seed Oil Prevent Heat Damage?

via the Beauty Brains-

Lilypad asks:
I’m transitioning from relaxed to natural hair and a lot of blogs and video bloggers tout grape seed oil as a heat protectant when blowdrying or flat ironing hair because it has a high smoke point (about 420 °F). Is there any truth to this claim? The smoke point refers to the oil’s use in cooking but does it apply to hair as well?

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Preventing Heat Damage & Selecting an Effective Heat Protectant: The Science.

Temperatures encountered during blow-drying, flat-iron straightening, and hot curling processes can be high enough to cause severe trauma to the hair. Results of this can include cracks in the cuticle layer, bubbles or voids in the cortex, frayed and split ends, chipped and ragged cuticles, faded color, diminished curl and increased frizz, as well as, in Tori's case, broken strands. If avoiding high heat styling methods is not an option, it is important to take precautions to prevent or minimize damage. There are a number of products on the market advertised as heat protectant sprays, lotions, and serums which claim to prevent or repair the detrimental effects of high temperatures on hair. Are these products effective, and if so, how do they work, and which ingredients are responsible for their performance?

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How to Straighten Natural Hair and Minimize Heat Damage

Watch as SumetraReed demonstrates how to achieve fluffy, smooth, straight hair with one pass of the flat iron!  

My major heat styling tips?  Only blow dry damp hair (not soaking wet hair) and definitely use the chase method (as demonstrated in this video) during the flat ironing process (wherein you chase a fine tooth comb with the flat iron) for more effective straightening. These tips, along with a good heat protectant will really help in the prevention of heat damage.  

How to Prevent Heat Damage from the Flat Iron - Natural Hair

I typically straighten my hair once per year, but I have actually gone as long as a year and a half. When I do straighten, I want to do it the safest way possible and I want it to last a solid week. No use in using all that heat on my hair if I’m just going to go back curly in a few days. If you're scared of heat damage (and the big question: will my curls come back?) then you will want to follow these tried-and-true tips for straightening safely.

The Heat Junkie Detox.

photo courtesy of Mini Marley

Jonesing for heat? Yea, it can happen to the best of us. Somehow a cute and different hairstyle (like straight hair) can turn into an overused crutch and it wouldn’t be so bad if it…wasn’t so bad! Heat styling should be used moderately and if you are way past that point, then you may be a heat junkie.

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Heatless Curls on Flat-Ironed Natural Hair

by Shelli of Hairscapades 

Just coming on here very quickly (well, not really, because I spent two hours putting filters on these iPhone pics, emailing them to myself, saving them, renaming them, uploading them … while “multi-tasking” and watching Duck Dynasty! LOL!) to share how I got these pretty curls, with no additional heat, on my 2 week old flat-ironed hair (straight hair maintenance post coming soon!). Wow … run-on sentence much?

Anyyyyyyyyywho … after debating between using flexi-rod or pin-curls to get some bouncy, heatless curls … I decided on the pin curls, because they wouldn’t disturb my sleep!! I remembered that Chime (aka HairCrush) had done a pin-curl video that I watched a couple of years ago. So, I pulled it up to refresh my memory on her technique.

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By now you've likely encountered the hair tutorial gone wrong that resulted in unassuming YouTuber Tori Locklear losing a full section of hair. The country gasped with her when she realized what high heat had done to her hair, and many of us thought twice before touching a flat iron or curling wand to our strands again.

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