Hair Straightening Damage

Girl who is using a hair straightener
Photo: Valentin Balan/Shutterstock
Q: How badly will straightening damage my hair if I straighten it more than 2 times a week or more?
A: If done properly, and with the appropriate protective products, you shouldn't experience any hair damage from straightening the hair - not from blow-dry straightening or flat-iron straightening.
The important thing to remember is that you need to use protective products like leave-in conditioners and thermal styling creams to protect the hair and keep it moisturized during the styling process. You also need to make certain that your styling appliances are not too hot for your hair by testing them before you use them on the hair.
Be sure to check out the article we have on flat-iron styling for directions on how to properly check whether your iron is too hot for your hair. It can be found here.
Another important tip is using smooth even passes through the hair with the hair appliance. Leaving the iron in one spot on the hair will result in burning the hair, so make sure to keep the movement of the appliance through the hair constant. You can always make additional passes, but if you burn the hair, the damage is permanent.
Finally, if you are going to be performing thermal (flat-iron) straightening - or even blow-dryer straightening - of the hair on a regular basis, you're going to want to add weekly deep-conditioning treatments to your hair routine. Be sure to use a conditioner that is moisture-rich so that you make sure to replenish the moisture lost from the heat styling. Your hair will thank you for it.
See also:
How to use a flat iron
Does flat ironing cause split ends?
What is the best thermal protectant spray for flat iron straightening?
What can I do to prevent curling iron and flat iron damage?