How To Protect Hair From Heat Damage
How to Choose the Right Heat Protection Product for Your Hair (And Lifestyle)
It’s advice you’ve probably heard before and you’ll no doubt hear again: if you’re going to expose your hair to heat, either through styling products or time spent in the sun, protect it first. Of all the aggressors that can break down the hair’s essential proteins and cause irreversible damage, heat is up there with the harshest. Sure, our hair comes with its own natural protective barrier, but it’s not invincible to the damaging effects of UV rays, chemical color, or heat styling.
The protective lipid layer (known as the cuticle) is made up of overlapping cells that regulate the hair’s moisture levels and, when intact and healthy, sit flush against the hair fiber. It’s the aligned nature of these cells that creates the perfect surface for light reflection, and what does light reflection produce? Healthy-looking shine, that’s what. When these overlapping cells become raised and degraded through heat exposure, the hair’s inner cortex is left exposed, and dehydration (dry, brittle, lackluster strands) becomes more likely. And you can wave goodbye to shine…
What should I look for in a heat protectant spray?
The main function of a heat protection spray is to create a barrier between the hair strand and the heat it is being exposed to. By sealing the strand, it slows the speed at which the hair is heated, distributing its effects more evenly. This extra barrier not only works by keeping heat out but also by sealing moisture in, reducing its evaporation as heat is applied.
Preventing protein loss is at the heart of Nexxus scientists’ work. Why? Because our hair is made up of 90% protein (keratin), and replenishing it with protein-powered hair care is the key to stronger, healthier, and more manageable hair. Our Prep & Protect Leave-In Spray contains a PROTEINLOCK system, which forms an invisible layer of protection around the hair to seal in essential proteins and moisture. Elastin protein and hyaluronic acid are the star players of this formula, restoring hydration and bolstering the hair’s natural protective shield.
Can a heat defense spray protect hair from chlorine?
Our PROTEINLOCK system can also support the hair’s defenses against other external aggressors, such as chlorine or even salt from the ocean. If you’re a keen swimmer or spend most of your vacation splashing around in a swimming pool, chlorine can be a major concern, especially if you have dyed blonde hair, prone to brassiness. Bleached hair is more porous, meaning it’s more likely to soak up the chlorine used to sanitize pools, increasing dryness and brittleness. With this in mind, you may want to team your heat protectant with hair care designed to lock in color and keep drying chemicals at bay.
Which products can a heat protectant be used with?
The simple answer is, whichever products your hair type requires. While a heat protectant works hard to reduce damage and protect the hair’s essential building blocks, other products can be layered to restore existing damage, and add shine, softness, and manageability.
The PROTEINFUSION blends are different in every Nexxus range – developed by scientists who dedicate their work to the study of proteins (proteomics), identifying the building block proteins our hair has lost, based on the different types of damage. If your hair is severely damaged by chemical coloring and heat (read: dry, brittle, with plenty of split ends), you need to team your protection spray with an in-shower hair care system engineered to visibly heal these extreme signs of damage.
The Keraphix range works to restore the hair’s protective barrier, with a keratin protein and black rice PROTEINFUSION blend, engineered to replenish lost proteins and temporarily heal split ends, stopping them in their tracks. Need a quick fix between the pool and heading out for the evening? The Keraphix Damage Healing Treatment Masque delivers an intense moisture hit in under five minutes.
And don’t underestimate the benefits of a good multi-tasking styling product. Our Weightless Style Collection includes styling essentials such as the Prep & Protect Leave-In Spray and Smooth & Full Blow Dry Balm, which provide an added boost to the hair’s defenses.