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Natural Hair Care: Is Heat Styling Really That Damaging?

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Valdosta chapter.

Healthy Hair Growth and Heat Don’t Mix!

     We all come to a point where we feel as if our hair growth has been completely stunted. It’s not a good feeling when we begin to realize our uneven hair is the result of thinning and breakage. Looking at naturalistas with waist length hair, you must wonder what the hidden secrets entail. Well, first things first, what secrets are the naturalista community withholding? How can we surpass this length in which we’ve seemed to become pinned to? Believe it or not, the big secret is to leave your hair alone. Overuse of the tools, chemicals, and heat cause excessive breaking and thinning. On a journey to healthy hair growth, you must be willing to eliminate processes that digress your progress.


How is Heat Damaging My Hair?

     It is honestly no surprise that heat poses a threat to healthy hair growth. Similar to the way shingles protect a roof, each strand of hair is protected by overlapping cuticles. These cuticles, however, begin to become damaged at temperatures measuring 350 degrees Fahrenheit and higher. Flatirons escalate this issue by completely stripping our strands of their cuticles. Our strands are then deprived of protection from the heat, leaving the hair brittle and prone to breakage.  Heat damage is most commonly obtained through the excessive application of extreme temperatures and through the usage of appliances with temperatures measuring 400 degrees Fahrenheit and higher. Signs of heat damage include uncontrollable shedding, the minimization of luster, and straight strands with the inability to revert back to curls.


No Heat Challenge? I Accept!

     Naturalistas are always looking for new ways to retain growth and speak volumes with their mane. It is obvious that healthy hair growth begins from within. We are encouraged to eat foods that are high in protein, such as eggs, and dark leafy greens, such as spinach, that are high in iron. However, the intake of these foods will not counteract the damages we have manually inflicted upon our mane. 

     The most common process naturalistas opt to omit is the application of heat to the tresses. We like to call this the No Heat Challenge! Being that the benefits of avoiding heat application accumulate over time, this challenge may range anywhere from 30 days and beyond.

Get creative with your styling! Stay tuned for ways to stretch your hair without heat application!




Jamesia Folston is an Early Childhood Education student at Valdosta State University. She is a 23 year old alternative music addict who enjoys traveling, thrifting, and creating. She aspires to become an educator abroad and globetrotter.
Her Campus at Valdosta State.