You may subject your strands to a lot of stress all year round, but this hair harassment can go to extremes during the holidays. Hair spray, hot tools, and tons of taut styles can lead to hair looking and feeling a little lackluster. Help your mane make it through the soirees sans the brittle effects! "Protecting your hair is something that's easy to do," celebrity stylist Mark Townsend, who has done hair for Natalie Portman and Christina Aguilera, says. If you're a regular user of hot tools, there's one absolute tip you need to know to keep your hair healthy.
Do you crank your straightener or curling iron up to the highest temperature possible, grab a huge chunk of your hair, and then go over it again and again until you get the results you want? If you do, then you're just asking for some serious damage. "If you use your iron like this, you're only getting the top and bottom layers of hair, which is why you're having to run your tool over it so many times," Townsend says. "This is going to damage your hair."
Instead, Townsend suggests working in two-inch sections and keeping the heat on a lower setting; 350 degrees is plenty. Not only is this gentler on your strands, but also, hair will actually style more quickly with this method. And always use a thermal spray when you're working with hot tools. One that adds shine, like Oribe Foundation Mist ($24), will keep things silky and smooth.