Can You Restore Heat Damaged Hair? Here's What Trichologists Have to Say

It's no secret that heating your locks with flat irons, curlers and hot showers can disrupt its health. Trichologists Sara Hallajian and Shab Caspara broke down their tips and tricks with E! News.

By Alyssa Morin Apr 12, 2024 4:46 PMTags
Watch: Julia Fox’s New Hair Transformation Will Make Your Head Turn

Ready to beat the heat?

With your hair, that is. Because whether you're taking hot showers or frequently heating your hair with curling irons or straighteners, your strands are being put through the ringer. And it's likely that the high temps are not only destroying the health of your hair but causing it to be dry, tangled and brittle.

But luckily, you can treat your tresses with some extra TLC, so that it looks and feels its best.

Trichologists—a.k.a. specialists that study issues related to the hair and scalp—Sara Hallajian and Shab Caspara shared their mane advice on how to restore your hair from heat damage, including the types of treatments and products to use and how long it typically takes to repair your strands. Spoiler alert: There's no quick fix!

So, without further ado, keep reading to see the what the best coarse of action is.

Stars' Epic Hair Transformations

What are signs of heat damaged hair?

Before you can treat heat damaged hair, you'll want to understand if it's an issue you're experiencing. "Heat damage is caused by an overuse of irons, usually flat irons or curling irons," Hallajian pointed out. "Try to locate where the damage is happening to avoid doing it over again."

The first iterations of heat damage might not seem obvious, but there will be a few mane signs. "Heat-damaged hair cannot be smoothed out and feels tangled and hard to get a brush through," the Âme salon founder explained. "There will be broken fly away hairs on the surface of heat damaged hair."

Caspara added, "The No. 1 telltale sign of thermal damage is split ends or 'white ends,' which are the precursors to split ends. White ends are fried ends of hair that have lost pigment and depleted their internal structure and appear like white dots at the end of strands."

Pixland / Getty Images Plus

How can you treat heat damaged hair?

In terms of using a product to protect your hair from heat damage, Caspara recommended Biotera's 2:1 Protective Leave-in and Overnight Treatment.

"It both protects hair from thermal styling up to 450-degrees Fahrenheit, and can be applied and left on hair overnight," she said. "It reduces breakage by over 80 percent when styling, and most importantly, it contains scalp-friendly ingredients."

As a general rule, the New York-based hair growth expert explained, formulas that "consist of polymers and silicones will provide a protective layer and prevent overheating the internal structure of the hair." 

Hallajian added, "I love using the molecular repair mask by K18 to rebuild broken hair, and it works for all hair textures." Plus, ingredients with shea butter, argan oil and almond oil can also help repair dry, brittle strands.

Boy_Anupong/Getty Images

How long can it take to restore heat damaged hair?

There is both good news and bad news.

"Hair that is breaking and splitting is unable to be restored back to normal," Caspara said, "but it can be managed and maintained with hair treatments and styling products until it slowly gets dusted off with regular haircuts."

Now that you have your bases covered, click here to read all about how to create a healthy haircare routine.