Hair steaming has become more and more popular, and those who use this technique often report improved health, growth, and volume of their hair. If you are unsure if hair steaming is right for you, knowing a little more about it can help you decide if you would like to give it a try.
So What Is A Hair Steamer?
Steaming hair is an effective way to apply heat and moisture to your scalp. Steamers come in three basic varieties with many different features and options, but all of them perform the same essential function.
Salon style steamers are larger and intended to be used multiple times throughout a day. They are standalone devices and can be rolled to wherever the client is seated. They have larger reservoirs of water and may incorporate electronic features such as timers and automatic shutoff controls.
A table top steamer is medium-sized device intended for home use and can be placed on any counter or flat surface. Some feature a removable hood that allows you to transform your hair steamer into a facial steamer.
A hand held steamer is the smallest and the most portable version. Using it like a wand, you can wave steam along the areas of your hair that you are treating. These are good for those that travel or live away from home.
How Does Hair Steaming Work?
Applying heat is nothing new. It is well known that heat causes your hair’s cuticles to lift and become exposed. Your hair is able to absorb more of the conditioners or color treatments you may be using. This helps to improve their effectiveness.
Traditionally, hot towels have been used to apply heat, but the energy dissipates quickly. There is also a limit to the temperature you can achieve with heated water. At 212 degrees Fahrenheit, water boils away. Consequently, steam may be much hotter than water. A steady stream of steam is a way to reliably apply high heat to your scalp for the entire duration of the treatment.
Advantages of Steaming
Heat is an efficient cleanser. While you may wash your hair regularly, not every contaminant is removed thoroughly. A buildup of bacteria and dead skin cells can lead to itching and dandruff. One of the main advantages of steaming is the removal of these contaminants.
Steaming is also an excellent way to introduce moisture to your hair. The heat from the steam encourages your hair to absorb the water more thoroughly. This helps to increase your hair’s elasticity while reducing dryness, brittleness, and breaking. Those who regularly use hair steamers often report that their hair is fuller and feels fluffier.
Tips for better Results
Too much heat can be damaging, and some find that prolonged exposure to steam irritates their scalp. The most beneficial results occur when you steam your hair only once a week for 30 minutes.
You should also try to get as much of your hair into the steam as possible. The ends of your hair are just as important as the roots. Clip your hair up, and steam the tips.
Avoid using a cap. Covering your hair with a heat cap offers no additional benefit and actually limits the effects. It takes longer to heat your scalp and moisture cannot get to where it needs to go.
If you are still unsure, give hair steaming a try. Ask about a steaming treatment from your stylist the next time you are in the salon.