Benefits of Steam Treatment For Curly Hair

A big part of becoming natural was throwing away your relaxers, blow dryers, and flat irons, never to use heat on your hair again. But what if I were to tell you that heat can actually be good for your hair? We’ll take a deep dive into why heat is great, how it emphasises curls, and how to lock in that moisture.

Why Use Heat?

Heat is great for hair because our hair was made to react to the environment around us. When it’s hot, it opens up its cuticles to allow moisture in and toxins out. When it’s cold, our cuticles close up to keep in warmth and moisture. Our hair stands up, lays down, and does other amazing feats to keep us safe and healthy. Stylists have figured out how to manipulate hair to give it an extra boost and make us even healthier. So what are some quick reasons to use heat?

  • It promotes growth
  • It opens up the cuticles and allows for moisture
  • Removes toxins from the body
  • Allows for deeper penetration into the hair shaft
  • Reduces flaking and dry scalp
  • Enhances the curl pattern
  • Makes hair more manageable

Hair Steaming

Hair steaming has become a new trend in the natural hair community, and I’m hoping that it’s here to stay. The goal of the steamer is to use the warmth from the water to open up the cuticles in order to deeply penetrate the hair strand. Hair steamers are also known for promoting blood flow in the scalp – aka aids in hair growth. Since then, many naturals, and stylists, have been raving about their cute coils and lavishing on their length, so how can you get some of that too? When looking for a hair steamer, I would recommend looking to:

  • How much water it holds
  • How long it stay hot
  • Whether or not you can control the heat
  • Whether it can fit into your current lifestyle

There are so many different types of steamers on the market. Cordless, standing, hand-held, and more. However, it’s important that you make sure you get one that matches your lifestyle and what you're looking for in a steamer.

If you do decide to get a steamer, you can use it for pre-pooing, deep conditioning, and refreshing your hair. Creative naturals are finding so many amazing uses for steamers every day, so I’m sure that there will be more options in the future. But the focus right now is on heat.

Pre-Pooing in Heat

Pre-pooing is another great way to use indirect heat to style your hair. Pre-poo is a hair treating method used to help put extra nutrients into your hair before you shampoo. It’s great for people who have a lot of hair damage, use colour treatments, or are transitioning from relaxed to natural.

The best way to pre-poo your hair is to wrap it with either a shower cap or store bag and sit under a steamer or hooded heater. Heat and oil are a great combination, but it’s important to use them very carefully. You don’t want to put scolding hot oil on your skin. Make sure that you always swatch the mixture on the inside of your wrist before placing it on your scalp. After detangling and separating your hair into four or more sections, apply your oil. Afterwards, feel free to wash out your oil in the shower.

Pre-poos are especially great for people with high porosity hair. Because high porosity hair loves water but doesn’t keep oil in as well, using heat will make oil retention more efficient.

Warm Showers

I’m sure that if you asked anyone off the street if they preferred cold or warm water showers, they would definitely say warm. There are so many benefits to warm water showers, other than the fact that they feel amazing. But warm showers are very important for properly washing your hair.

As you wash your hair, try to make sure that you’re thoroughly soaking your hair. This ensures that there is an even amount of moisturisation going on. The heat from the shower allows for more efficient cleansing and encourages blood flow.

You may be wondering, “what’s the difference between a shower and a steamer?” Though it would be more affordable if you simply used your shower instead of a steamer, it would be a significantly different experience. With a hair steamer, you have just the steam getting into closed proximity with your hair – showers can’t do that at all. Also, you don’t have to take off all of your clothes, or wear a bathing suit, to get a good steam session in. Finally, you can use your steamer in any room, even take it with you as you travel.

With these points in mind, I do understand that not everyone can afford a steamer. But that’s perfectly fine! Steamers are a luxury item and a shower will do a good job too. But if you can get a steamer at any point, then I encourage spending the extra pound to have it.

Heated, Deep Conditioning

I fell in love with deep conditioning as soon as a tried it. My hair felt like silk, it was manageable, and it was more than luscious. I still can’t imagine my life without deep conditioning at least once a month. The only thing better than deep conditioning is deep conditioning with heat.

Heated deep conditioning is my favourite because it’s such an effortless way to add moisture to your hair. I always use a leave-in conditioner because it’s affordable, fast, and lasts me at least a month. This deep conditioner only takes 3 minutes but it feels like I left it on for four hours. But no matter what you decide to use, make sure that you follow the instructions and use the product as recommended. 

In summary, heat has so many amazing uses that you can utilise in your everyday life. Make sure that you leave a comment below and tell us how you use heat to improve your hair.

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