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Monday, August 10, 2009

Turn the Heat Up....

After I got my hair relaxed last week, I did a dance of joy. Let me tell wasn't because I just got a relaxer. As of 8/1/09, I can wrap my hair! YES!! You must understand, this is a very important milestone for me. I's can use less heat now! I'm sure you guys already know that shorter hair=more heat. It sucks but that's just the way it is. Shoot, on the days I didn't use heat I would look like Goku from Dragon Ball Z

Even though I had to use heat frequently when my hair was shorter, here are the things that I did to make it through those long, dark months:

1) Invest in a good flat iron
Find a good ceramic and tourmaline flat iron. This type of flat iron not only straightens your hair, but it smoothens it and helps to keep moisture in. Also, get a flat iron that has a temperature gauge (just so you don't fry your hair to death during your straightening sessions). Although there are other good flatirons (like the FHI Platform) I use the Sedu and the Sedu Revolution Shortie Styler (check for pricing/availability).

Just as a note, if you have a ceramic plated flat iron make sure the coating has not worn off. If it has, it is time to get a new one!

2) Find a good heat protectant and use it every time (yes...every time!)
Finding a good heat protectant is so important. It serves as a barrier between your hair and the flat iron which minimizes damage. There are sooooo many protectants out there and finding one may require a bit of trial and error. A good starting heat protectant is IC Fantasia Heat Protectant Straightening Serum (which is $7.99- $9 and can be found at Sally's and Walgreens).

3)You may have to increase the frequency of your regimen
It is important to keep in mind that heat a) changes the structure of your hair and b) removes moisture from your hair. Those two things combined can result in dry, brittle hair. When I first had my hair cut, I washed and deep conditioned my hair no less than 2x a week. I was always doing my hair! Sometimes I would use a moisturizing DC ( like Aubrey Organics Honeysuckle Rose) or a light protein DC ( such as ORS Replenishing). I would then follow up with a light protein leave-in (Giovanni Direct Leave In). The point is: if you use more heat then you must make more of an effort to ensure your protein/moisture balance in check at all times.

If you can, try to sneak in no-heat/ indirect heat when you can. For example, you may decide to air dry your hair then flat iron or dry via a hooded dryer then flat iron.

4) That temperature gauge on the flat iron is important
Although I used heat frequently, please believe that the temp gauge on my Sedu was set a 250 ( 280 at the highest). Since my hair is relaxed, I don't need to crank up the flat iron to the max setting just to bump my hair. Shoot...I really don't need to set it to the middle temp (360). Just as a general rule (for me) a flat iron set at the lowest temp+ a heat protectant is better for my hair health than a flat iron cranked all the way up. I can still get the style I desire while keeping my hair as healthy as possible.

I've found that by following these 4 guidelines, the increased heat did not significantly damage my hair and as someone with short hair, there is no need to fear heat. You just have to make the appropriate adjustments to your regimen.


  1. Blessings on your hair journey! I came to your page through Traycee from K.I.S.S. I just have to say how kinda ackward yet very interesting that I come across someone else with my name (spelled SharDey)AND the same age lol very very rare :) Have a good day!

  2. Lol...yeah well what can I say? The singer Sade was hot back in '85!

  3. EXCELLENT tips! I tell people ALL the time that a good ceramic flat iron is worth the investment. I bought the Solia iron about 2 years ago and it is still going strong. Leaves my hair silky and smooth. I LOVE the iron and they are a little cheaper than the Sedu; however, I am curious about how well the Sedu works as I am looking to purchase another, smaller iron soon (my iron is the 1 3/4 size; I have BSL hair).

    Sharday: Could you do a review and give us your thoughts on the Sedu? Thanks!

  4. @Age in ATL: I sure can! Look for it soon!