A technique that’s loved by many, using a diffuser helps to define your curls without disrupting your natural pattern. It’s the season of love, and we want you to adore your curls, so once you’re done here, head over and read about our natural curly hair tips too.
Why use a hair diffuser on curly hair?
If you’re already familiar with the wonders of a diffuser, then you can back us up here. Drying your hair without a diffuser will do nothing for your curls and leaving your hair to completely air dry can lead to frizz and less defined curls, whereas a diffuser targets the frizz and works hard to reduce it. Your hair dries holding its natural curl in place - what more could you want? If you want to embrace your curls, it’s a no-brainer. If you’re after a different look, check out our blog on ‘How to do a bouncy blow dry’.
What are the benefits of using a diffuser?
We’ve already listed some, but we’ve got even more for you. Curl definition and the ability to tame frizz are our number one benefits for obvious reasons, but using a diffuser will also add body and volume to your hair. If your natural hair is wavy and not curly, a diffuser can really enhance your natural wave and you might actually have more of a curl than you originally thought!
Not all surface level, a diffuser actually protects your hair as it uses less direct heat than using a normal hair dryer, straighteners or curling irons. It also adds less stress to your hair because you’re drying it and letting it bounce freely, rather than pulling it, brushing it or tying it up. Whatever your plans are this season, a diffuser is always a stress-free styling solution.
So, how do you use a diffuser? Let’s break it down into steps:
1. Hydration and moisture for your curly hair
Keeping your curls hydrated and moisturized is absolutely key and a diffuser works best on wet or damp hair. On wash day, diffuse after towel-drying your hair (using a microfibre towel or cotton t-shirt) and applying any products that you use in your usual routine. If you’re looking to refresh your curls, spray them using a fine mist spray bottle so the diffuser can re-define your locks.
2. Detangle your hair
If you’ve chosen to dampen your hair instead of washing it, you can really hit two birds here by using a detangling spray to moisturize and detangle at the same time - check out our everyday detangling spray for curly hair. Perfect for detangling your hair, this detangling spray uses shea butter which helps against frizz and breakage. If you’ve got fine hair, we have an option for you too. If you’re going in with freshly washed hair, use the spray to help detangle your locks before diffusing and brush out any knots gently, using our Naturally Curly Wet Detangler.
3. Heat protector
While a diffuser adds minimal heat, especially if you use it on the lowest heat setting, protection is still key. Spray your hair liberally with your favorite heat protection spray to make sure all your strands are covered and brush it through.
Now for the bit you’ve been waiting for! As you probably know, hair dryers have different heat and speed settings. For minimal damage and minimal frizz, we recommend using the lowest heat and speed setting as this causes the least damage, but have a play around with the settings and see what best suits you and your hair routine. Part your hair into different sections and start with the bottom layer. Cup the ends of your hair in the diffuser and move the diffuser up towards the roots as you dry your hair. If you’re looking to add volume to your roots, flip your head upside down and diffuse. Keep diffusing until your hair is about 80% dry, letting your hair air dry for the last little bit will keep your curls looking hydrated and bouncy, and they will be easier to manipulate and style.
5. Don’t touch!
Finally, when you have finished diffusing, make sure your hair sits where you want it to, but try to not touch it too much - this can cause frizziness! Leave your curls to pop and get ready to turn some heads.
Bonus tips for diffusing curly hair:
1. Use your fingers when diffusing. Twisting your strands will help define your curls, then place them in the diffuser to set.
2. Some find that starting at the root gives extra volume, because it separates the hair and focuses on the part that takes the longest to dry. Try it out and see which way works best for you.
3. Turn off the diffuser when repositioning or adding new hair to avoid the hair from getting frizzy.
4. Once you’ve finished diffusing, use a comb to fluff up the underneath and pick at the hair very slightly to give an extra bounce.
If you’ve got curls, a diffuser should be a staple on your dresser. Leaving you with defined, bouncy curls, you’ll feel like you’ve had a visit to the salon. Diffusing hair can be tricky when starting out, while you learn the perfect method for you and your curls, but practice (and a bit of trial and error) makes perfect.