Believe it or not, the most important part of the air-drying process happens while your hair is wet. Start by turning your shower faucet to warm to open up your hairs’ cuticles, in turn helping the active ingredients in your shampoo to penetrate deeper. Work in a high-quality shampoo to cleanse your hair of oils, dirt and product build-up that can prevent it from looking its best. Follow up with conditioner to give your strands a boost of moisture, reintroduce proteins and lock in nutrients.
Brush it off
While your hair is still wet (and preferably when your conditioner is still in), grab your favorite brush or detangling comb. Your hair will be less likely to frizz and will be easier to style once it’s dried if it has been cleared of knots and tangles while wet. Rinse out your conditioner with cold water to seal your hair’s cuticles and lock in shine while reducing frizz.
Toss your towel
Cotton and terry cloth body towels can actually cause more harm than good. The coarse texture of their fibers can aggravate cuticles, worsen split ends or even create cracks in the hair shaft, weakening hair. Instead of a body towel, opt for a cotton t-shirt or a microfiber cloth. The pressed fibers will remove excess moisture from hair without harsh pulling. Try blotting and squeezing with the two alternative materials—you’ll have tamer, silkier locks in the end.
Smooth things out
For locks that dry silky and smooth, invest in a nourishing leave-in conditioner or, if you’re a curly girl, a hydrating curl cream. Spread the product evenly over damp hair and use the scrunching method to make sure every strand is coated. If you have coarse or textured hair, a hydrating oil can also be helpful—adding a beautiful, natural shine to coils, and locking in moisture on dry, tight scalps. Oil can also be applied to ends to reduce the appearance of flyaways, giving you a more polished look. After you’ve worked in the product, label your hair a no-go zone. This means no touching and no twirling, unless you are setting your hair.
Get in position
Because you won’t be able to use heat to change the length and bend of your hair, you’ll want to position hair to dry as close to your desired look as possible. That means parting your hair to the side or middle while it’s still wet, or braiding and introducing loops for volume. You can even wrap hair, so it lays flat when dried. You may still have to play around with your hair once its thoroughly dried, but achieving your desired look is much easier when you’ve set it beforehand.
Kick off your air-drying routine with products that are custom made just for you. Get started with your Prose consultation here.