Blow-dry or air-dry
Air drying your hair after the shampoo will cause more damage than blow drying. Blow-drying is always preferable to air drying for one main reason. When the hair is wet, the water molecules fill the cracks in the cuticle and absorb into the hair. Like a sponge, the hair expands enough to accommodate the water. The water exerts a slight pressure from inside the hair which stresses the cuticle layer and lifts the cuticle outwards slightly. If the hair is in a stressed state long enough, the hair’s cuticle layer will split and peel up to relieve the pressure. The cuticle is a hardened dead layer of protein and once the stress fractures happen, there is no permanent repair solution. When the hair is blown dry using warm air on a low setting, the water is evaporated out of the hair quicker, relieving the stress faster.
Dry your hair without drying out your hair! The constant use of blow-dryers and flat iron can leave your hair dried out. High heat and the length of time high heat is used on the hair will also reduce the structure of the hair. The hair will lose its elasticity. Damage to the cuticle of the hair will make it more breakable. Steam will form inside the hair shaft which in turn will burst hair by breaking it. This is why we need to limit the amount of heat as well as the length of time you dry the hair.
Blot your wet hair, wrap the towel around your head like a turban, in just a few minutes the towel will have absorbed the excess moisture. Use one of the old fashioned table-top dryers, the ones that you put your head under, they fold and expand to different heights. Start with hot and reduce to a cooler setting then begin styling when 80%-90% of the hair is dry.
Blow dry with a diffuser first, and then style when 80%-90% of the hair is dry, or use the blow dryer with the nozzle pointing down the hair shaft by gently moving your fingers. When the hair is 80% or so dry, use a paddle brush to smooth out the ends and then finish with cold air. Apply Leave-in treatment on clean towel dried hair prior to application of any styling tools.
Hot air tricks.
After towel drying your hair, apply a leave-in treatment. A good thermal protector will do many things: seal the cuticle by acidifying the hair, (should have pH 3.0 to 4.5) adds thermal polymers that absorb the heat and cause less damage to the hair. Make sure you keep the blow-dryer moving; (left right, left right motion) instead of leaving it in one spot, and point the nozzle down the hair shaft.
Blow-dry the nape area first, leaving the area above the forehead second. The bottom part should be dried first, so that the top part does not absorb the moisture from the bottom. In the end, this gives body to your hair. No matter how much you use the blow dryer, the top will remain flat because the hair soaks up moisture from the bottom while it is wet. If drying hair upside down, start at the nape, move on to the sides and dry the crown last since there is a tendency to over dry that area. Begin styling the hair when the scalp is completely dry and 80% of the hair is dry.