Is your mane ready to declare a heat moratorium?
Want to drop your blow dryer faster than Kylie Jenner drops boyfriends?
Then step away from the hot styling tools.
Maybe not forever. But a few days each week would certainly help the health of your locks.
And yes styling your hair without heat is definitively possible and desirable.
To help with that we’re going talk about how you can live unplugged and look good doing it. We’ll look at:
- Hacks for Straightening Your Hair Without Using Heat You Should Know
- Three Ridiculously Easy Ways to Add Heat Free Volume
- How to Easily Get Fabulous, Bouncy Curls Without Heat
- VIDEO: 10 Heatless Hairstyles to Inspire Your Look
Note that last one- as what would any examination of the heatless lifestyle be without a video full of alluring heatless styles even if they do lean heavily towards braids, buns and messy updos? It’s not to be missed.
So let’s dive into what you might call Hair Styling Unplugged starting with
Hacks for Straightening Your Hair
Without Using Heat You Should Know
Most believe to achieve poker straight hair requires three things – heat, heat and more heat.
Meaning smooth, straight hair requires unleashing an array of hot styling tools cranked to their max, mane mangling settings to get the sleek results you seek.
But would you believe there are heatless alternatives?
That were used long before the hot iron was invented.
I know, I was surprised too.
Granted they won’t work for every hair type.
For example it does take some heat to coax curls to straighten out.
And they may not produce picture perfect hair exactly.
Yet this is all acceptable and quite doable if you’re starting with hair that’s got at most a bit of a wave in it and isn’t thick and coarse.
Heatless straightening begins by using a smoothing shampoo like Moroccanoil Smoothing or Suave Professionals Keratin Infusion Smoothing. Using something like them would be a good start.
Not only will such a cleansing product add extra hydration to parched strands you’ll find after rinsing they will leave a bit of a coating behind that will help smooth and tame them.
Oh and the lovely sheen your hair displays is just an added bonus.
Next do all you can to extract all the moisture you can after washing.
This works to help your hair to dry faster while reducing any tendency to frizz up.
A great way to accomplish this is by using microfiber towels.
These little water suckers absorb water much faster than your run of the mill terry cloth.
Blotting your hair with one doesn’t rough up your cuticles either.
Which makes them a great tool to add to your heatless hair days.
Nothing more than extensive brushing can often calm down unruly hair.
Styling Product Help
Often you’ll find there’s a product that can indirectly induce a degree of straightness. Like using a smoothing cream, pomade or oil to bend, or is that unbend, your tresses to your will.
And just because you’ve sworn off heat doesn’t have to mean ditching your blow dryer.
To keep it in your styling arsenal just use that mysterious setting you may not be all that familiar with. The cool shot or cool button. This will let you dial down the heat without dialing down the glam.
The technique as described from here is simple “…let your hair dry naturally, about 70-80% of the way dry. Then, with your dryer on the coolest setting (don’t touch that hot setting!), blow your hair dry, keeping the dryer about 6-inches away from hair at all times and moving it around continuously. Voilà: gorgeous, healthy hair, without the heat.”
Then how about an idea that’s super retro – jumbo rollers?
And I know I know
The first thought that flashers into your head when you hear rollers is probably curls.
But if you use monster sized rollers you will actually be able to straighten your hair. And by monster I mean the size of pop cans or like 2 inches or more in diameter.
So after sectioning a roller’s width of hair, wrap the hair around the roller. Do what you can to keep the strand somewhat taut when rolling. Oh and “plastic rollers—rather than Velcro or foam—will help you achieve a smoother effect.”
Do what you can to sleep on them and wake up to smooth strands.
What else can I say but it just works!
Look. Straightening hair with hot tools takes time. Maybe you can reclaim some of that while saving your strands using these straightening hacks.
Three Ridiculously Easy Ways to Add Heat Free Volume
Skinny jeans have been all the rage for a while now.
Can’t think of any time skinny limp hair has ever been all the rage though. Which could explain the lengths we go to in our quest for volume.
But if you want to achieve cover girl like volume without teasing, or heat, well what’s a girl to do?
It’s true that volume without teasing can be challenging.
So let’s explore three ways to play up some heat free volume.
Of course the old standby for volumizing is styling mousse. Anyone going heatless can benefit hugely from learning how to use a mousse-like product the right way.
- a generous golf ball sized clump of volumizing mousse
- apply to damp hair mid strand and down,
- as you bend from the waist.
- Comb through.
- Air dry.
This should give more than ample lift without heat. But if you hair can stand it applying the mousse at the roots is better still.
Scrunching Defined: Styling technique where the hair is repeatedly crumpled in your hands like you were crumpling paper.
Then when it comes to volumizing technique here’s one girls solution…
Hair Volume Without Heat or Teasing
Another idea from Glamour suggests washing your hair before bed and using a velvet scrunchie to “put it up into a topknot, or do Princess Leia buns (RIP Carrie Fisher) and sleep on it.”
With these buns just remember to twist them away from your face leaving maybe half inch of hair out to get a give a more relaxed feel to your hair in the morning.
Texturized Braids Unleashed
One final technique requires you apply a light spritz of your favorite texturizing product like Sexy Hair Style Spray Clay or L’Oreal TXT It Tousle Waves spray to a somewhat damp mane, braid it, and let it dry.
Take out the braids, scrunch and you should uncover some voluminous beachy waves.
Okay so it seems we’re on a bit of a roll here so let’s keep it going by talking about
How to Easily Get Fabulous, Bouncy Curls Without Heat
Hands down the easiest no heat style is curls. Well if you don’t count braids or pony tails.
Here’s four ways to curl things up and live beautifully ever after.
No Heat Paper Towel Curls
This is a super simple way to create tight, high impact, ringlet like curls – sans the curly iron of course.
- Section out your hair – the bigger the section usually the looser the curl
- If not damp spritz lightly
- One stroke brush to smooth
- Take a one fourth of a piece (one to two inches wide) of paper towel
- Starting at the bottom wrap the ends around the towel then roll the strand up
- Gently tie the ends of the paper towel to hold the hair in place
- Repeat until all your hair is tied up.
No rags needed.
Soft to sleep on.
Crazy big curly hair results.
What’s not to like?
Sort of old school yes.
But this approach will produce well defined curls without rollers or heat.
Yet you can accomplish much the same thing using old tees/sheets/pillowcases that have been cut into long strips instead of paper towels.
Speaking of old school you can’t get much more old school than bobby pins.
I remember my grandmother getting all pinned up the night before some big family gathering.
Never imagined myself going that way.
But if you want to go heatless, bobby pins have to be an option on the table.
All you do is wrap an inch or two wide section of hair around your middle and index finger. Slide your fingers out while pressing the hair on your scalp and secure this loop of hair to your scalp with a bobby pin, wavy side down.
Repeat so that all your hair is properly pinned up.
Wait until your hair is totally dry or overnight then remove the pins. Spiral curls will appear where none were before.
Okay so foam rollers may not exactly be the hot tool of the moment either, pun intended, yet they still can fill a valuable spot in your heatless styling toolkit.
Much like paper towels or braids foam rollers can be put to work while you sleep. The clip holds them in yet they are soft enough not to totally interfere with your beauty rest.
Allure suggests using them this way…“on slightly damp hair, positioning them horizontally and rolling under from ends to roots” before you hit the hay.
Earn extra credit if you wrap your head in a silk scarf for an extra layer of strand protection.
Next morning, when the alarm goes off, release your hair and rake your fingers through the curls to loosen and soften them.
If less defined curls are your objective the slightest bit of brushing will soften them further still.
Different but similar would be
Flexible Curling Rods
Look at these as an updated alternative to plastic or foam curlers.
Flexirods Defined: Foam tubes wrapped around a thin, flexible wire.
Even better they are super simple to use.
All you do is roll almost dry hair around the rod then bend the ends in so they stay put.
Once you get the hang of it they go in really really fast.
But if you need to see a video, well, here you go.
HEATLESS CURLS! (With flexi rods)
If you like you can add a light weight mousse or maybe leave in conditioner first. You might have to play around with products like that to see what, if anything, works best with your hair.
It’s also worth noting, as mentioned here, that you want to loose-wrap these. If the foam crimps you’re wrapping them too tightly and that may produce somewhat uneven results.
Some reviewers are quick to point out these aren’t exactly comfortable for sleeping. But it may simply be the price to pay for heatless styling. Or more that some are light sleepers because not all users have this issue.
Here too a scarf or shower cap or something to help to hold them in place is smart. Especially if you toss and turn a lot at night.
Hopefully now you’ll feeling like you need to get some foam curlers or flexirods into your heat free beauty routine.
Yet if all that isn’t enough here’s …
10 Heatless Hairstyles to Inspire Your Look
Perfect for days when you can’t think of anything heatless to do with your hair, here are 10 cute ways to wear it that don’t involve any hot styling tools.
This fast paced video tutorial is a great source of inspiration for 10 simple to super simple hair styles you can pull off in minutes.
Yes, these styles lean heavily on braids. But each changes things up enough so that the result looks totally unique.
And no, there isn’t a lot of step by step guidance although each has some.
You might look at this as an inspirational video showing what you might do. With 10 solid ideas you can learn and tweak for use with your hair.
10 Heatless Hairstyles
To make this easier here’s a little breakdown of where the different styles start in the video so you can jump to any that catch your eye. Bet there’s one or two you’ve never seen before.
- #1 Bohemian Fishtail braids tied to the back of your head
- #2 psn 1:35 Twisted Rope Twist Braid
- #3 psn 2:15 Messy Top Knot Bun
- #4 psn 2:50 Twisted Braid
- #5 psn 3:25 Twisted braid into a fishtail braid
- #6 psn 3:50 High Pony tail
- #7 psn 4:15 Criss Cross
- #8 psn 4:45 Tiny Knotted Bun
- #9 psn 5:25 Hair Bow
- #10 psn 5:45 Looped Faux Side Braid