Straight hair is possible without heat. Seriously!
What you’ll need
It might be one of the main causes of chronic damage to our strands, but we gotta admit, nothing comes close to the drying and straightening efficiency that our blowdryers get us. Maybe that’s the reason we’ve become so dependent on them. An easy, simple tool to master, the blowdryer has become the ultimate style must-have, without which we’d all be left in a panic (and wailing about frizz). When in a pinch or when we have to know how to straighten hair without heat however, it behooves us to learn how to live without these heat tools otherwise.
Thankfully, we have a lot more options than our foremothers may have had in the realm of non-heat-induced straightening. Why not try your hand at a few of these methods the next time you’re looking to switch up your style? Not only with they give your strands a welcome reprieve from thermal damage, they could also introduce you to a whole new look, or, who knows, a life-changing styling routine while you’re at it. Read on to learn more about how to straighten your hair without heat.
Easy Hacks: Straighten Hair Without Heat
1. Get a Japanese straightening treatment.
Okay, so this is technically cheating—but you’re only doing it once, so I think we can be forgiven. Granted, Japanese rebonding or thermal reconditioning processes do incur major damage the first time they’re done on hair, but this is usually a one-and-done procedure (at least, until hair grows out) and you literally don’t have to bother with your ’do every time you step out of the shower. Attempt only when strands haven’t been overprocessed in the past, and spoil bi-weekly with at-home deep-conditioning creams, such as Nexxus New York Salon Care Humectress Masque.
2. Use a straightening shampoo and conditioner.
You can easily (and affordably!) straight hair without heat by using the right wash and care system. If you have wavy to straight hair and you simply need to whip them into behaving occasionally, use a smoothing or anti-frizz shampoo and conditioner (we love the Dove Anti-Frizz Oil Therapy Shampoo and Dove Anti-Frizz Oil Therapy Conditioner system) that can help fight cowlicks and kinks caused by frizz and promote a sleeker, looser shine.
3. Use some serum.
Another way that we love straightening hair without heat is with help from a powerful serum. Pick up a serum or a smoothing and shine-inducing product that’s tailor-made for giving you a straight look. You can apply it straight-up on wet hair for full potency, or provide more control to dry hair via a liberal application from root to tip, like we do with TRESemmé Anti-Frizz Secret Smoothing Créme.
4. Use a setting lotion and regular rollers.
It may seem counterintuitive at first, but one of the more old school ways we’ve seen on how to straighten hair without heat actually includes sectioning them in curlers. Start by using a smoothing, anti-frizz shampoo and conditioner in the shower and gently towel-dry. Detangle with a wide-toothed comb, and apply a smoothing cream on your lengths. Roll loosely under a regular curler and secure with a bobby pin. Let set normally while you go about your business, blast with some air from an electric fan or toe the line with the cool setting of your blowdryer. Unfurl afterwards and brush out the sections, which should now have lift, but no hard curls.
5. Air-dry your hair and set.
How to straighten curly hair without heat can be tricky but totally not impossible. After you wash and condition your hair, towel-dry your hair. Then apply a leave-in conditioner throughout your hair, concentrating on the areas that are generally more frizzy. Then, twist your hair into a low bun and sleep with it like this. When you wake, define your hair with some hair oil and shake out your hair. While it won’t be pin straight, you will have a less frizzy-texture.
6. Work that cool shot button.
If your hair is on the thicker, more unruly side, you’re going to need some mechanical help/focused air. Work the lesser of two evils by using the cool air setting on your blowdryer (or that “cool shot” button, located near your trigger finger). Prep your hair with a blowdrying smoothing cream beforehand, such as Bed Head by TIGI After Party, for more volume and kink-control a.k.a one of our favorite natural hair straightener ideas.
Looking for more ways on how to straighten hair without heat? Check out our feature on how to create heatless curls.