The Best Heat Protectants For Safe, Healthy Hair

The obvious choice for emphasizing the importance of a heat protectant would be to liken styling your hair without one to having casual sex without a condom: dangerous, and likely best avoided.

So if this is the metaphor we’re going with (and it is), it follows that you should employ similar preventative tactics, too — namely, always be prepared. A box of rubbers stashed in your dresser drawer, a few good heat protectants lined up on top… Maybe safe sex and healthy hair aren’t so unrelated after all.

Ahead, the best new creams, mists, and concentrates, for defending your hair against blow-dryers and bad decisions. May your heat protectants be as effective as your prophylactics — that is, around 98% when used perfectly.

A true multitasker, this lightweight leave-in spray protects against heat damage, fends off frizz, and leaves hair silky and hydrated, thanks to a nourishing, strengthening blend of panthenol, vitamin E, hydrolyzed proteins, and amino acids — and it smells exactly as chic and expensive as you’ve come to expect from the celebrity go-to brand.

Ouai Leave-In Conditioner, $26, available at Ouai.

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We all want long-lasting curls, especially if we’ve taken the time to break out the hot tools and risked potential heat damage. That’s why this new thermal protection hairspray from Sexy Hair is our style-locking secret weapon. The lightweight spritz not only protects strands from heat damage up to 450°F, but it also secures curls for up to a whopping 72 hours. All we need to worry about now is finding the right plans to do ’em justice.

Sexy Hair Hot Sexy Hair Control Me Thermal Protection Working Hairspray, $18.95, available at Ulta Beauty.

There’s nothing to not love about this new blow-out aid — it’s affordable, smells like fresh laundry, detangles like a charm, and leaves even the driest lengths and ends with crazy softness and shine.

Kristin Ess Style Assist Blow Dry Mist, $14, available at Target.

Powered by strengthening biotin, this wallet-friendly formula promises to protect hair against not just heat-styling damage, but brushing, bleaching, coloring, and braiding, too. (Try saying that three times fast.)

Tresemmé Repair & Protect 7 Pre-Styling Spray, $4.98, available at Walmart.

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