We all want a shiny and gorgeous hair and do everything possible to realize our dream. Now that summer is in full swing, we often let our hair air dry. For one thing, this saves us a lot of time and should also be much healthier than the hairdryer and straightener – or at least that’s the popular opinion. Ever since the first hair dryer appeared on the market in 1900, we’ve all asked ourselves the question at least once: Should we air dry our hair or blow dry it? Which is better? Until now, we’ve always been told that heat damages the hair structure and that we should let our mane dry naturally every now and then. But according to a new study, this is completely wrong! And have we piqued your interest? Then read on and find out here why air drying can be more damaging than blow drying.
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What is the structure of our hair?
To understand whether air drying hair or blow drying hair is better, let us first explain how our hair is constructed. Whether it’s short, straight or curly, our hair is always made up of 3 layers, and namely cuticle, cortex or fibrous layer and medulla (still known as medulla). The cuticle layer is the outer layer and consists of 5 to 10 overlapping layers. The cuticle layer also indicates the health of the hair and should always lie flat. The cortex (also known as the fiber layer) is the middle layer and makes up about 80% of the hair. The fibrous layer is mainly composed of keratin and determines the tensile strength and elasticity of the hair. The medullary canal is the innermost layer of the hair and is actually not found in every hair type.
Air dry or blow dry hair? This is what the study says
Air-drying hair or blow-drying it? This is the eternal question that has occupied the beauty world for several years. Until now, we all thought that air drying is much gentler and better than blow drying. But according to a scientific study, we were wrong. And do you feel lied to now? Well, so do we! So let us explain further. During the study, dermatologists from Korea compared different hair drying methods and came to the surprising conclusion that blow drying is not as harmful as we thought. The test subjects were divided into 5 groups and were asked to blow-dry their hair for different lengths of time and at different temperatures. One group, however, let their hair dry in the air.
Why is it harmful to let the hair air dry?
The study did confirm that blow-drying at a shorter distance definitely causes more superficial damage than air-drying the hair. However, the surprising result was that our mane suffers less if we blow dry it with a distance of 15 centimeters and with regular movements. What’s the reason? While the direct heat of the blow dryer attacks the outer cuticle, air drying can actually damage the hair structure from the inside out. Our hair can absorb up to 30% of its own weight in water and the longer it stays wet, the higher the pressure. Logically, this also increases the risk of hair breakage and hair becomes dry and brittle. In addition, wet scalp is the perfect breeding ground for any fungi and bacteria, and after all, we do not want that, right?
How should we dry our hair?
Everyone is different and whether you air dry or blow dry your hair depends on your own preferences! The two methods have their advantages and disadvantages and can cause some damage if we don’t do them right. The Korean study was also able to prove how we should best dry our hair without damaging the hair structure. To have a shiny and healthy mane , you should first let the hair air dry until it is only slightly damp . Only then reach for the hairdryer and blow dry it at low heat and with a distance of 15 centimeters. Granted – this will take a little longer, but it is definitely much gentler and you will be rewarded for your efforts with a strong head of hair.
How to blow dry the hair properly?
Don’t you love the feeling when you leave the hair salon with freshly blow-dried hair? They somehow feel wonderfully airy and light, don’t they? Of course, to achieve the results at home and avoid hair split ends and breakage, you need to know how to blow dry your hair properly. And here are a few important tips:
- After showering, carefully squeeze out excess water with a microfiber towel. The rule here is: do not rub under any circumstances!
- If possible, let the hair air dry until it is 50-60% dry. If not – blow dry it on medium heat with a distance of 15 centimeters with regular movements. Do not forget to use heat protection!
- If you want to style the hair with a round brush, then first part it in several sections. Also make sure that you always blow dry in the direction of growth (from top to bottom).
- Finally, blow-dry the hair cold and let it cool down – this will give it a beautiful shine.