Ask the Expert: How to Blow Dry Hair Like a Pro
A gorgeous blow dry is a red carpet classic, and one of the most common things that our stylists are asked is how guests can get the professional blow dry look at home. You may think that there are special tools, products and techniques that stylists use that mean us mere mortals can never recreate the salon-quality blow dry ourselves – but this really isn’t the case. With these expert tips, we can all learn how to blow dry like a professional – and leave the house with that Amber Heard-esque blow-out every day.
1. Make sure you’re using the right brush.
If you tend to use the same hairbrush that you carry round in your bag to also style and dry your hair, then you’re not alone – but you’re also probably not getting the most from your blow dry. A paddle brush or Tangle Teezer just won’t do the job properly; for a perfectly smooth blow dry, a round bristle brush works best. To speed up the time it takes you to dry your hair, choose one with vents in to allow the hot air to circulate.
2. Remember the prep products.
Of course, we all know the importance of heat defence products by now. However, there’s a whole host of other prep products we can use that will ensure our blow dry looks amazing – and lasts. The new Redken Pillow Proof has instantly become one of our favourites. This blow drying primer has been specifically formulated to reduce blow drying time, and will also repair and nourish hair for boosted volume.
(Psst – for a limited time, there is 20% off ALL Redken products here.)
3. Dry from root to tip.
Along the years, you might have picked up that when brushing hair, it’s good to start at the ends and work up. However, the same is not true when blow drying. For a smooth finish, we should dry hair from the root right down to the tips. This will also make sure that the ends of our hair – the part most susceptible to damage – don’t receive too much heat.
4. Hold your brush in your dominant hand.
When drying hair, it can often be tempting to hold the hairdryer in our strongest hand because of the weight. However, the secret to a fantastic blow dry is how you hold the brush to create volume and style. To have enough control over the brush, it’s important to hold that in your dominant hand (depending on whether you are right- or left-handed). Give your other arm a workout by holding the appliance.
5. Choose your direction.
Consider aiming the air flow from your hairdryer in a different direction, depending on what effect you want to achieve. For a sleek, straight style, aim your appliance downwards. For volume at the root, pull a section of the hair upwards and direct the heat up the shaft. Drying your hair in the opposite direction to where it’s usually parted is another expert tip for adding body at the root.
6. Apply tension (but don’t pull!)
When rough drying your hair, it’s fine to use your fingers to casually tousle the hair. If you’re looking for a professional-style blow dry like Cat’s or Blakes’, though, it’s essential to keep tension on the hair once it’s around 80% dry. Follow the brush with the hairdryer for a sleek finish, but make sure you’re not pulling at the hair or catching any knots.
7. Use the medium heat.
It might look like our stylists can work miracles, but the key to a really healthy-looking blow-dry is to actually have healthy hair. To do this, we need to cut down on the potential for heat damage. One easy way to avoid overexposure to heat is to use the medium setting when blow drying our hair. You won’t notice a big difference in the drying time, but you will feel healthier, smoother results.
8. Don’t forget the big finish.
For our hair stylists, finishing products are just as important as the ones they prep with. To keep your perfect blow dry looking just so, protect the style with a light misting of hairspray such as Redken’s Control Addict. For added volume, spray Redken’s Quicktease at the roots for a teased effect without any of the backcombing.