Damage Caused by Hair Dryers

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Hair dryers can cause serious problems if not used properly.
Hair dryers can cause serious problems if not used properly. (Image: dryers image by timur1970 from Fotolia.com)

Hair dryers are one of the most frequently used products in both the home and the beauty salon. Because few people want to go outside with the "wet head" look, the hair must be dry before styling can begin. However, just because hair dryers are popular and convenient doesn't mean they can't do any damage.

Hair Weathering

Weathering of the hair takes place gradually over time, regardless of what products are used. Weathering is where the cuticle of the hair shaft begins wearing away, exposing the cortex and causing the shaft to break. While hair is fairly resilient, heat treatments such as from a hair dryer can cause this process to speed up, meaning damaged and broken hair can result much more quickly.

Hearing Loss

It may not seem like it, but hair dryers are actually right on the borderline when it comes to decibel levels that can damage your hearing. Sounds right around 70 decibels include a lawn mower, vacuum cleaners and hair dryers. Hair dryers are worse in some ways because they are used so often and the sound is so close to the ears.

Burns

Hair dryers have been known to reach up to 225 degrees when turned on to the highest setting. For this reason, they can easily cause burns to the skin when touching exposed parts of the neck and scalp. It's important to keep hair dryers out of the reach of children while the hair dryers are hot.

Safe Use

Users should concentrate on protecting their hair from excessive heat damage by letting their hair dry a bit before applying the hair dryer. Use a towel and air dry for a while, only using the blow dryer when the hair is damp, not soaking. Hold the hair dryer away from the hair to both prevent direct heat damage and spare your hearing. This will also cut down on accidental contact burns.

Hair Protection

Those who use the hair dryer on a daily basis should use special conditioners that are heat activated and designed to be left in the air. Special medicated shampoos are also sold that can moisturize hair and cut down on some of the weathering effects of consistent heat damage.

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