I have not used a flat iron in my hair for about 4 months. Granted most of that time I kept my hair in protective hairstyles but for about 3 weeks now I’ve had just my real hair and I have yet to use my flat iron. In fact I loaned it to a friend who is afraid that she’s ruining things with me by not returning my flat iron but I’m really not missing it. Honest.
In the last year or so, give or take a few months I’ve been able to reduce the amount of heat that I put in my hair and here’s how. A couple caveats, I have relaxed hair. I don’t relax my hair that often, about 3 times a year and so this is a practice that I use successfully on my relaxed hair and new growth. Second, this is not recommended during the winter because of the extreme cold and dry weather. Great for the rest of the year though!
First I wash and deep condition my hair.
Second I put in a leave-in conditioner, followed by an anti-frizz moisturizing straightening creme– like the kind you would use with a flat iron, just this time sans the flat iron. Comb through.
Thirdly, I let my hair air dry, which typically takes all day. My sister hates the look of crazy untamed-esque semi-waves that this creates but I mostly don’t care.
At the end of the day before bed when my hair is dry or mostly dry, I brush it out, starting with a big wide tooth comb, I work my way down to a boar brush. This straightens out the kinks. Feel free to use more straightened creme/lotion at this point. It works like a Colombian blow-out but without the heat.
Then I wrap all of my hair or pin curl sections (more on pin curling coming soon) and go to sleep. Curlier and kinky hair can achieve a “stretched” look if a tight twisting/braiding stretch technique is used.
The next morning straight hair ready to go. Use a serum to get shiny, sleek looking hair.
~~If you’re in a hurry and can’t let the hair dry for a long time, you can dry your hair in front of a fan, while finger-combing to make sure that inner layers also get a chance to dry. Make sure you use a leave-in conditioner first.