Using heat on our natural hair can be dangerous. It can be harmful to our strands and it can cause our fragile strands to dry out, break and become damaged. Does that stop us from doing it? Yes for some but no way for others. Using heat styling can be safe if used sparingly and will protection. Using a heat protectant is the only way to go but what if you hate silicones? Welp, all you gotta do is invest in a silicone-free heat protectant and keep it moving.
The market is saturated with heat protectants but not all are the same. If you are in the market for a silicone-free one, check out our list of the best of the best, cause we’ve got four of them and they are awesome!
What is a heat protectant?
A heat protectant is a hair product (usually a spray) which is designed to coat and protect that hair from heat damage when using direct heat styling tools like a curling iron, flat iron, hair dryer (without a diffuser) or even a hot comb. It’s important to use a protectant to keep your hair healthy and to act as a barrier to heat and keep the strands from drying out and becoming damaged. Most heat protectants use ingredients like silicones as they coat the hair and protect it from what you apply to the strands. Silicones are a touchy topic in the natural hair community so let’s discuss:
What Are Silicones?
Silicones are plastic-like polymers that are used in hair products to lubricate, condition and add shine. They are usually identified by names that end in “-cone,” “col,” “conol,” or “-zane,” which makes them easy to spot on product labels. Typically, silicones are used to coat the hair shaft in order to prevent frizz, smooth the cuticle and protect against thermal damage from heat styling tools. The two most common forms of silicones found are non-soluble and water soluble.
Non-soluble silicones are synthetic materials that cannot be removed or penetrated with water, which can be inadvertently damaging to the hair. These polymers can only be removed from the hair shaft by washing with clarifying shampoos or shampoos with harsh sulfates. These types of shampoos, although sometime necessary are drying to the strands. The problem with non-soluble silicones is the fact that they seal the hair shaft completely, allowing no moisture to penetrate the hair shaft until the silicone is washed out.
Water-soluble silicones can be penetrated by and dissolved with water, which makes them easier to deal with. The good thing about these silicones is the fact that they don’t cause build up, can enhance moisturizing properties, can add humectant qualities, allows moisture penetration, and are easy to remove. It might be beneficial to look into trying out water-soluble silicones if you’re looking to reduce frizz and impart more shine to your locks without running the risk of dehydrating your locks.
For obvious reasons, some naturals prefer to not use any hair products with silicones and that includes a heat protectant. So what’s a heat loving natural to do? She can opt for a silicone-free heat protectant. Check out our list of our faves.
Living Proof Restore Instant Protection – This heat protectant spray does double duty by smoothing and shielding damp or dry hair—with results that last up to an impressive 48 hours. Living Proof Restore Instant Protection provides:
Smoothness for up to 48 hours
Heat protection up to 450 °F/ 230°C
Ultra-fine mist ensures even application
Helps hair stay cleaner, longer, so you can heat style less often
Works on dry or damp hair
Aveda Brilliant Damage Control Spray –The foundation for any hair style, use this spray as a pre-styling tool to protect your hair from the hazards of combing, heat styling, and sun damage. For all hair types Protects against thermal damage Reduces breakage from combing Helps protect against UV damage. 8.5 Oz (250ml). Active Ingredients: Aloe: Possessed of strong soothing properties, this desert succulent is a source of moisture. Aveda’s “Art and Science of Pure Flower and Plant Essences” calls for ingredients of the highest integrity.
Briogeo Farewell Frizz Blow Dry Perfection & Heat Protectant Crème – This Heat Protector for Hair Provides Hair Frizz Control While Safeguarding Your Hair from Damage from the Heat of Blow Dryers, Straighteners, etc. Protective Hair Straightener Cream for Dry Hair. Achieve your Best Hair Ever With This Thermal Hair Protector Cream Packed Full of Beneficial Natural Ingredients Including Rosehip Oil, Argan Oil and Coconut Oil To Keep Your Hair Nourished & Beautiful.
Mixed Chicks Straightening Serum – Have curly, wavy, frizzy or even straight but unruly hair and want that polished straight look? The Mixed Chicks Straightening Serum eliminates frizz and creates sleek styling with a flat iron. The humidity resistant formula means your hair will stay smooth and shiny. It even cuts blow drying time in half! Botanical infusions that include Silk Amino Acids, Hops, Rosemary, Chamomile and Witch Hazel extracts, nourish and protect hair. Healthier, more manageable and sleek sums up the end result.
Hair Food Coconut & Argan Oil Heat Protectant Spray Blend – Hair Food Coconut & Argan Oil Heat Protectant Spray Blend helps to seal and protect your hair from heat damage up to 450°F and give it healthy shine (Due to thermal styling). Protects all hair types to give hair a healthy-looking shine and lets you style to your heart’s content.
It’s no secret that I do not use heat styling. Haven’t for a few years now and while I always want to give you all the information that is available on natural hair topics; I would be remiss if I did not suggest trying a heat protectant with silicones and without before deciding on which one you prefer. When it comes to hair damage, heat is real so I suggest throwing all the protection that is out here on your hair to ensure you do not get heat damage. Heat damage is irreversible so fight it correctly!
Let me know which silicone-free heat protectant is your favorite below!