I’m wearing Kinky Twists right now, kinda short ones (it’s been a while), and the day before I went to the market to get it done, I decided to blow dry my hair myself.
The last time I braided my hair, it was a bit of a disaster. They couldn’t handle it at the salon, even with the blow dryer and their big combs. My hair was feeling like Titanium. The dryer only succeeded at drying my hair, not stretching it. And the braids that followed got rough pretty fast. I complained on Twitter, and on the blog, and a few people suggested I try the Tension Blowdry method. Thank you guys for all your tips, they are much appreciated! <3
I looked it up, expecting something mega (Natural hair and all the terminologies), but it’s actually very simple.
What is the Tension Blow-Dry Method?
The Tension Blow Dry method is simply you, your blow dryer and your heat protectant. No combs.
You wash and detangle your hair, and when it’s damp or dry, put in your leave-in/ heat protectant
How-To Tension Blow-Dry:
Pull a section of hair down, hold it taut at the ends, and run the dryer down the section you’re holding, from roots to ends.
So, the dryer is doing the drying/blowing, and your hands provide the tension LOL. That’s my way of understanding it.
I had my hands full, and with no tripod or anything, I couldn’t make a good video. Plus, it was late at night, and the lights weren’t so bright. But this video below from Ms. Alicia James of Easy Natural Hair shows you how:
If your hair is long enough to section, it’s best that you section it whenever possible- to wash, to air dry, to hold while you style, and even now, to blow-dry. This helps to keep it out of the way, and stretch it just a teeny bit.
So I washed my hair that Thursday, deep conditioned, and put in some Cantu Shea Butter Leave-In Conditioning Repair Cream as my leave-in, sealed my ends with Jamaican Black Castor Oil, and left to air dry for a few hours.
HEAT + WET HAIR = BAD IDEA
Directly applying heat to wet hair gives you bubble hair. LOL. Water gets trapped in your hair as a bubble, and bubble hair is more brittle, that is, easier to break. Let your hair dry or be really close. It’s also a good idea not to put the nozzle of your dryer so close to the hair. The scientist, Jc of The Natural Haven Bloom explains this phenomenon here.
So, hair is clean and (kind of) dry, sectioned and ready to go.
Let’s get to blow-drying.
Aphogee Keratin Green Tea Restructurizer (heat protectant) and
CeCees Curls Whipped Shea Butter.
On second thought, I shouldn’t have used the shea butter because I’d already sealed with the JBCO (a little too much oyel in the mix) and the Restructurizer is a heat protectant. I’ll review this Aphogee product later. For now, just know it’s good. 🙂
I spritzed with the Restructurizer, held my hair taut and went to town.
I kept my dryer on the medium heat setting, and tried not to get so much heat on my ends. The ends are the oldest parts of your hair, the most fragile, the most prone to dryness and breakage. As you can see in the photo below of my first section, there’s still a lot of texture in there. I didn’t dry it out bone straight.
I went section by section, undoing to blow dry, and retwisting after. Can you see how different my twists look now?
I asked my hair braider to take a picture so you could see it up close, how nicely stretched the hair was.
I loved my blow-out results! And I will try my best to resist the temptation to do this too often in the future. My hair was soft, and shiny [& just as thick] and I’m looking forward to my first proper blowout (like to wear out) when I grow a few more inches. 😉
Yes, these tips apply to relaxed hair too. 🙂
I was a little worried about the way I used the Restructurizer because it’s like “flavored water” for your hair. By flavored I mean, packed with protein & heat protectant goodness but it’s still a water-based spritz. So next time, I won’t spritz it seconds before I blow dry. Rather, I’d spritz and leave to dry before I go in. I don’t want bubble hair 🙁
And one last thing, I read that it is good to do a blast of cool air on your hair after you blow-dry it, but I didn’t because my dryer doesn’t have a cool setting O_o. Just two- medium and high heat. Yep, new blow-dryer is now on my Wishlist.
So guys, that’s that. The entire process took me about an hour and thirty minutes. Don’t be scared oh, I’ve observed I’m quite slow with hair things.
Do you blow-dry? Any blowout tips for girls to try in the future? Leave us a note in the comments!
P.S. You can get the Aphogee Green Tea Restructurizer at Perfect Trust Cosmetics, Abuja & Sizzelle Store in Lagos, which also delivers Nationwide. CeCees Curls is available in Abuja as well. For contact information for all 3 vendors, please see the Where-to-Find Directory.