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Hair Clinic: Help! My hair is breaking!

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My hair is breaking, is it my iron, my heat protectant or both?
"Hi. I have a question about flat irons. I have a CHI right now and I have used every major brand of heat protectant, including the CHI brand.  Nothing seens to work. My hair is braking and splitting even though I only  use my flat iron once or twice a week. I am wondering if it is my iron, which is only a year old or my protectant?  I visited your website and saw a lot of different irons, and they all seem to do the same thing and have the same benefits. Could you suggest a really good protectant and possibly a really good iron. My CHI cost well over $100 but if I can get better results with a lesser iron that would be great.  And also if I have to pay a little more, that's okay too. Thank you for your help."  - Keoika via email
It could be both!
If you are experiencing breakage, I can definitely recommend some tips for you to help with your hair straightening:
1 – I notice that if you can get your hair as straight as possible before using your flat iron, that helps a lot. Try using a smoothing shampoo and conditioner first to relax your hair and prevent any frizz. We have a few brands you might like, Davines Love Smoothing Shampoo and Davines Love Smoothing Conditioner, or try L’anza Strait-Line Smoothing Shampoo and L'anza Strait Line Smoothing Conditioner.

2 – If you blow dry your hair straight first with a brush, try to use a quality ceramic brush that reduces breakage and also helps to smooth the hair’s cuticle and prepare it for straighteningsuch as the HAI Ceramic Boar Bristle Brush.

3- Use a restructuring treatment to strengthen your hair from the inside, we have many of these, Redken Extreme CAT Treatment sounds like it would work well for you.

I’d also suggest a nutritive leave in serum such as Kerastase Nutritive Oleo Relax Leave-in Serum.

4- Definitely invest in a good thermal protectant, CHI is for ‘normal’ hair but if you hair is already delicate and damaged I’d suggest going with something stronger such as:

Redken Smooth Down Heat Glide or Joico K-PAK Leave-in Protectant.

5- You probably need a different flat iron. Not all flat irons work the same for everyone because everyone’s hair texture is so different. I have long, thick curly hair and my hair is prone to breakage from multiple passes down the same section, so I’d invest in a flat iron that would straighten my particular hair type with less passes. I think these three might be good for your particular hair concerns:

GHD MK4 1" Ceramic Flat Iron – it’s a higher price point than the CHI Original, but in my opinion is a much better iron for your hair type, and has a 1 year warranty.

Babyliss Nano Titanium 1-1/4" Flat iron – This has brand new technology to smooth faster and a 4 year warranty, which is unheard of in this industry.

Maxiglide Flat Iron – This has steamburst technology to protect the ends of your hair before you smooth and straighten which would be good for you, plus a 1 year warranty.

In general, you want to keep your hair healthy and protected, so any product that says ‘leave-in’ is a great step in the right direction towards reducing the breakage and improving the overall health of your hair. If you only use your iron 1X a week and you have breakage, I would think it’s definitely the wrong iron for your hair type.
Let us know how it goes.
-Curly Belle

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