When it comes to the rules of wearing hair extensions and protective styles, there’s one edict that should be followed first and foremost: You have to protect your natural hair. If you like to rock these looks with leave-out hair, it’s especially essential to take the proper precautions. After all, your strands are not tucked away like the rest of your mane, and over-manipulation can take a toll on your strands. This is even more true if you love to use hot tools on your leave-out hair to blend it with your extensions. Thankfully, all you need are the right hair-care products and styling tips to do your mane justice. If you’re new to the leave-out game or need a refresh on how to care for your hair, we’re here to provide some clarity. Ahead, learn everything you need to know about leave-out hair, including how to keep your mane in order.
WHAT IS LEAVE-OUT HAIR?
Before we dive into how to care for leave-out hair, it’s important to know exactly what it is. Leave-out hair is what the name suggests; it’s a section of hair you leave out to cover extensions. Typically, leave-out hair is worn in a rectangle shape at the center of your head to create a middle part, but you can opt to leave out your hair along either side of or around the perimeter of your head. In other words, you can pretty much use this technique wherever you need to disguise your extensions. The sole purpose of a leave-out is to give your protective style a more natural look. It’s commonly paired with U-part wigs and extensions.
WHAT HAPPENS IF YOU DON’T TAKE CARE OF YOUR LEAVE-OUT HAIR?
Since leave-out hair allows your locks to be exposed to the elements, plenty of things can go wrong without the proper hair care. For starters, consistently using hot tools to style your mane can lead to hair breakage down the road. It can also cause thinning to become a reality. Product buildup and greasy strands can also become your new normal, hence why it’s important to nail down the right tips for keeping your leave-out in mint condition. Speaking of which…
8 WAYS TO CARE FOR YOUR LEAVE-OUT HAIR
Now that you’re well-versed in how important it is to care for your leave-out hair, it’s time to take action. Consider our eight tips below to show your strands some TLC.
#1. PREP YOUR STRANDS THE RIGHT WAY
One of the easiest ways to keep your locks in order is to wash your strands as you normally would. If you plan on using heat-styling tools in your routine, it’s not the best idea to work on dirty hair. Kick things off by washing your hair with the L’Oréal Paris EverPure Frizz-Defy Shampoo and L’Oréal Paris EverPure Frizz-Defy Conditioner. This duo will keep your hair smooth and frizz-free for a fresh out of the salon look.
#2. LET YOUR HAIR AIR-DRY
Once your hair is washed and conditioned, skip the blow-dryer session and let your locks air-dry. Minimizing heat usage works in your favor to reduce damage, which can go a long way in keeping your strands healthy-looking.
#3. ALWAYS USE HEAT PROTECTANT
Depending on which hairstyle you’re going for, you may need to reach for hot tools. However, that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t protect your mane from the heat. This is where a heat protectant, like the L’Oréal Paris Advanced Hairstyle SLEEK IT Iron Straight Heatspray, can save the day. It’s designed to provide your locks with 450-degree heat protection, calm frizz, and seal in shine. Spritz it on before applying heat.
#4. USE THE LOWEST HEAT SETTING POSSIBLE
Another way to keep your leave-out hair out of harm’s way is to use heat tools on the lowest setting possible. You may think that you need to use the highest setting to create lasting looks, but you can get the job done without the extra heat. Cranking up the heat setting can lead to unnecessary hair damage. Start by using your tool at a low temperature. If you feel that you need a bit more heat, gradually turn it up.
#5. TAKE YOUR TIME WITH HOT TOOLS
When using any heat tool, it’s best to work slowly. After all, slow and steady always wins the race. The goal is to go over each section of hair as few times as possible to achieve your desired look. Work slowly, giving the tool time to dry, straighten, or curl your hair. That way, you won’t have to repeat the process over and over. Remember, consistent heat can lead to damage down the road. Play it safe and take your time.
#6. CLEAN YOUR HEAT TOOLS BEFORE USE
One common mistake many people make when styling their hair is not cleaning their hot tools properly. See, when you use heat tools to style your strands regularly, product can build-up on them over time. In turn, this can make the tool less effective. Always make it a point to clean your hot tools to stay in the clear. For a lesson on how to do so, read How To Clean Your Hot Tools.
#7. OPT FOR HEAT-FREE STYLING PRODUCTS
There’s no rule that says you have to use heat tools to style your locks. You can achieve a stylist-approved look with the help of heat-free products. Grab a hair mousse, like the L’Oréal Paris Advanced Hairstyle CURVE IT Elastic Curl Mousse, to score a gorgeous set of curls. All you need to do is apply a dollop to your locks, scrunch, and let them air dry. Once complete, you’ll have soft and bouncy curls to admire in no time.
#8. ALWAYS FINISH WITH HAIR SERUM
No matter how you decide to style your hair, it’s always a smart idea to top off your look with hair serum. This essential works wonders to keep your leave-out hair smooth, so you don’t feel the need to reach for hot tools all of the time. Pick up the L’Oréal Paris EverSleek Frizz Finish Oil-In-Serum, which helps to tame frizzy hair, flyaways and smooth your strands. It also adds a silky, luminous touch to your look for the perfect finish. You can also apply this offering to dry locks as needed for extra nourishment.
Next up: There are certain hair-care tips everyone needs to know. These are them: How To Take Care of Your Hair.
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