Heat styling your hair -The rules

As much as we’d all like to tumble out of bed with enviable locks, the majority of us need a little (or in some cases, a lot) of extra assistance.

You’d be hard pressed to find a girl who doesn’t rely on a hair dryer, straightener or curler on a daily basis and let’s face it, many of us are the proud owners of all three.

But do we really know the rules for heat styling our hair? Considering the damage these appliances can do to our poor barnet, it’s high time we schooled ourselves on exactly what to do when it comes to our luscious locks.

Give your hair a break
Remember to give your hair a couple of off-days every week. As tempting as it is to run the straightener over your hair every morning, try not to! Professionals recommend your let your hair dry naturally once or twice a week and strongly advise we limit our straightening days to once or twice a week as well.

Don’t panic! Loads of chic looks, perfect for work or college, don’t require a straightener anyway and when you do indulge in some straightening, your hair will look all the sleeker for the time away from the heat!

Use heat protectant products
Many of us mistakenly believe that these products are little more than water and do absolutely nothing, but that’s simply not true, ladies. These products are designed to add moisture to your hair, something which rapidly evaporates the moment you apply a heated appliance to it. The products also form a protective barrier over the hair cuticle which helps to avoid that singed or brittle look many of us experience.

Why not try an experiment if you're still not convinced. Go protectant-free for one week if you dare, and the following week apply the sprays, serum or balms you've been recommended. See the difference? Yeah, we thought so!

Use the right sized appliance and accessories
If you have fine hair, then you need only use a 1’ straightener, but if your hair is thick and long then investing in a 1 ½’ appliance will make the world of difference and reduce your styling time. Also, be sure to use the nozzle on your hair dryer. This directs the heats and if done well, can reduce your straightening- time afterwards! Blasting your hair with a nozzle-free hair dryer will result in over drying and lead to a dry, frazzled look.

Yeah, think Harry from Dumb&Dumber for that one. Not quite what you're going for when the rest of you is bang on trend, right?

We have all come to rely so heavily on these appliances that using them as part of our daily beauty regime is just second nature, but you’d be surprised at how much you can do with your hair without plugging in a single tool. Plaits, high ponytails and messy buns never go out of style, so give your hair a break without sacrificing your bangin' look.