Not everyone was graced with drip-dry-voila! hair. For those with uncooperative tresses that rely on hair dryers and products, there are some choices that are greener and safer than others. Here’s two problems for starters.
Problem: Using a blow-dryer on high heat and a round brush to straighten your hair exacts a heavy toll on your body. The high heat and constant pulling can weaken hair strands, while the decibel level of the hair-dryer on high can harm your hearing.
Solution: Blot hair dry with a towel to remove the majority of moisture; then use a heat-efficient ceramic hair-dryer, such as the CHI Rocket Dryer ($134.95; folica.com) for a quieter, quicker blow-drying session. Beauty consultant Mary Beth Janssen suggests immersing the nozzle of the dryer in your hair, moving it quickly back and forth until hair is 90 percent dry, and only then begin styling. (If you move the nozzle around quickly, it won’t burn your hair.) “There’s no need to be using a brush the whole time to stretch your hair,” says Janssen. “Saving your styling until the very end reduces physical stress to your hair and scalp.”
Problem: Most hairsprays provide hold through the use of polymers of synthetic glues and plastics–microparticles that can be inhaled. Chronic overuse of hairspray has been associated with a condition known as “hairspray lung.”
Solution: Choose a hairspray that relies on a natural substance to set the hair, such as Perfect Hold Spray from Intelligent Nutrients ($39, 6.7 oz; intelligentnutrients.com), which contains certified organic acacia gum.
DIY: See these six Homemade Hair-Styling Recipes to hold your hair naturally.