Think a fabulous blow dry can only be achieved at the hair salon? Not true, says Bob + Paige Junior Stylist, Chandler Bond. She shares her step-by-step guide to doing it for yourself:
Step 1: Choose The Right Blow Dryer
The blow dryers you find at the gym or buy in drugstores aren’t the best quality. You don’t need to fork out for a fancy Dyson but you’ll want to spend at least $100 to get something decent. Look for one that has powerful airflow and adjustable heat settings that can go very hot, but not so hot that it burns your hair! One of my favourites is the Parlux Advance Light. It has a 2200 watt heat setting and 83m3/h airflow. Also, make sure the dryer you choose isn’t too heavy and comes with a concentrator or diffuser attachment!
Take Care Of Your Blow Dryer!
1) Don’t shake it while you’re using it! You wouldn’t shake your toaster, would you?
2) When storing, wrap the cord around itself, not the dryer.
3) Before putting it away, make sure the dryer has cooled off.
Step 2: Towel Dry
After washing, absorb moisture by gently squeezing hair with a towel. Don’t rub because it can create knots and cause breakage!
Step 3: Add A Heat Protector Product
No matter what kind of hair type you have, you’ll need to use a heat protector before you start drying to keep strands smooth. I like Goldwell Kerasilk Smoothing Serum or Royal Blowout Heat Styling Spray by Oribe. If you have average hair, follow this up with a normal volumizing mousse like Goldwell’s Style Sign Glamour Whip. If your hair is fine, add a lightweight plumping spray like Kevin Murphy’s Body Mass Leave in Plumping Treatment for Thinning Hair. What ever product you choose, don’t use too much or it will weigh the hair down. About a quarter-sized dollop is usually enough.
Step 4: Rough Dry
Set your blow dryer to medium heat and blast your hair all over until it’s about 80% dry. Flip your head upside down to get some volume (don’t do this if your hair is curly – you have enough volume!). If your hair is tangled, comb it after the rough dry that way you’re not moving product around where you don’t want it!
Step 5: Section Hair Into Pieces
Sectioning your hair is the key to a great blowout. It helps dry hair properly and you’ll get a smoother more professional finish. You can buy section clips at beauty supply stores. Here’s how to section: Start in front by pulling a piece away from the crown and clipping it on top of your head. Leave the sides of your hair loose – don’t clip these. Next, section the back of your head into two parts, one at the nape of your neck, and one above that. You should now have five sections to dry: one on top, one on either side, and two at the back of your head.
Step 6: Dry Each Section Using A Round Brush
If you want to totally smooth blow dry you’ll need to dry using a medium sized round brush. I like the ceramic-coated Gretchen by Fi because hair doesn’t tangle and get stuck. Make sure your concentrator is attached to your hair dryer! Using medium heat start by drying the back section at the nape of your neck first. When drying, you always want to start at the roots and midsection of the hair. The ends will dry on their own.
Each section has to set, so don’t take out the brush too fast before drying hair again! If you over-dry you can damage the hair. Aim for about one minute per section. If you have two brushes that are the same size, leave one in the hair and move on to the next section.
After blow drying the nape section, move on to the side pieces. Do the same as above then move on to the other back section. When you’ve dried everything else separate the front section into three pieces with your fingers and dry each one separately. The crown is where you want the most height so I usually pull the sections straight up while dryer them. This can be hard to do on your own but practice makes perfect!
Step 7: Apply A Finishing Product
Using your fingers, carefully place where you want hair to be, then apply a finishing spray. My favourite is Dry Texturizing Spray by Oribe because it gives hold, volume and texture. A lot of people don’t like hair spray but it will really help smooth out the cuticle and creates the pieces you want to accentuate, like keeping curtain bangs in place so they won’t fall into the rest of your hair. Finally, to really set the look, I like taking a little paste and twisting the front pieces and running it through the rest of the hair. I use AirStyle Flexible Finish Cream by Oribe, but you can also steal your boyfriend’s paste!
Voila! A beautiful, salon-quality blow out that you did yourself.
Final Words Of Advice:
A professional quality blow dry takes 30 to 40 minutes to achieve, depending on the length of your hair and it should last 2 to 3 days. To extend that, apply a dry shampoo to help block oils. You can also re-blow dry the front pieces everyday to help maintain the look.
Don’t give up on blow drying your hair! There’s no magic secret, it just takes practice! You CAN do it yourself.
Looking for salon beautiful hair? Make an appointment with a Bob + Paige Stylist