Here’s How to Get the Perfect Blow-Dry Sans Frizz

Written by Ashley Mishler

The perfect blow-dry is hard to come by. Sure, you can head to your local blow-dry bar or a trusted stylist, but not everyone has the time (or funds) to visit the salon on the regular. When more capable hands aren’t an option, that means it’s up to you to blow-dry your own mane at home. Usually, this process involves a lot of frustration, sweating, and frizz. But believe it or not, there are actually tried and true, proven ways to successfully blow out your hair at home without the frizz, sweat, and tears. Here’s how to blow-dry hair without frizz at home!

Person with long brunette hair blow-drying their hair with the Mane by Mane Addicts ionic hair dryer with a person with pink curly hair standing behind them with an upset face | Mane Addicts

How to Blow-Dry Hair Without Frizz

Start With the Right Blow Dryer

First things first, before you flip that switch, take a long hard look at your hair dryer. Is it the same one you’ve had for nearly a decade, full of lint with the coating chipping off? Is it a cheaper model you grabbed on the pharmacy shelf in a pinch? While there’s nothing wrong with saving money or using a tool until it breaks, there is a big difference in quality when it comes to the wide variety of blow dryers on the market. Oftentimes, cheaper or older models can actually contribute to frizzy hair days.

Your hair type will play the biggest factor in what kind of blow dryer you need, not necessarily the price tag. There are plenty of affordable high-quality options on the market. In fact, the “special technology” behind your model of hair dryer is what makes the difference. In general, tourmaline hair dryers and ionic hair dryers are going to be your best bet, especially if you want to know how to dry curly hair without frizz.  Some of our favorites include the Buttercup Blow Dryer from Drybar, our This Totally Blows! Ionic Compact Blow Dryer, and the BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium Blow Dryer from BaByliss Pro.

Always Use a Heat Protectant

This part should be self-explanatory, but if that were entirely true we wouldn’t mention it time and again! It is impossible to downplay the importance of a heat protectant and the impact it has on frizzy hair. Heat protectants come in various forms: “dry sprays” you can use before a flat iron or wand curl, mists you can add to damp hair before blow-drying, and as an added feature, in many of your favorite multi-benefit blowout products.

Using a heat protectant will prevent damage, thus avoiding more frizz in the future. One of our favorites is IGK’s Good Behavior Blowout Spray which not only protects against heat damage, but also detangles, fights frizz, and adds shine.

Embrace Smoothing Products

Speaking of products, you should always add some hair product to your mane before blow-drying, not just a heat protectant. It is rare that a person can blow-dry their hair without any bottle or balm assistance and get the finished and frizz-free look that they are aiming for.

Smoothing products are the best choice when it comes to fighting frizz, though the product you use will depend on your hair type of course. If you have medium or fine hair, try adding a small amount of Virtue’s Un-Frizz Smoothing and Styling Cream before you dry. Those with thick hair should snag a bottle of Paul Mitchell’s Super Skinny Serum and add a pump to their blow-dry routine.

Section Your Mane

Getting the blow-dry you desire will always start with a little bit of prep. Sectioning your hair before diving in with the dryer will make a huge difference, not only in how your blow-dry turns out but in how long it takes. Invest in a few sectioning clips to make your prep easier, or reach for a claw clip if you don’t have any on hand. Either way, working through small sections will allow you to achieve a smoother finish in less time.

Typically, you should always start by sectioning out the nape of your neck and blow-drying hair there first. From there you can move on to the lower part of the occipital bone (or round of the back of the head) toward the ears. After that, head upward toward the temples and back center of the head, and finally, the crown and any fringe you may have. Think of these sections like a horseshoe that wraps from one side of your face, around the back, and forward again.

Focus on Direction

Always remember to blow-dry your hair in the direction that it grows. This is why so many stylists and beauty professionals caution against flipping your hair upside down and drying it. When you blow-dry from that angle, you’re actually blowing the hair in the opposite direction, causing the hair cuticle (or outer layer of hair) to blast open and backward. This is one of the main causes of frizz when drying hair. Instead, stand upright as you work through each section of hair. Blow-dry down and away from the scalp, making multiple passes as needed until each section is dry.

Brushes Matter

Like blow dryers matter, brushes matter too. If you’re using a brush that isn’t conducive to your hair type, you may be creating more frizz rather than combating it. A natural hair, boar bristle brush and/or ceramic round brush should be your best friend when it comes to blow-drying. Don’t be afraid to mix it up either! Sometimes, it may be easier to start your blow-dry with a boar bristle paddle brush and then get your final finish with a round brush, or vice versa.

If you need help achieving a voluminous, frizz-free style, check out our guide on how to use a round brush properly.

Keep Your Distance

Another way to avoid a frizzy finish is to keep your distance. We can’t imagine that you have the blow dryer up to your scalp (ow, hot!), but you should never let the nozzle of your dryer actually touch your hair. Keep about an inch distance between your hair shaft and the dryer as you move throughout your sections.

Damp Is Good, Sopping Is Not

Here’s one tip you’ve maybe not considered, but how wet your hair is actually makes a difference in how frizzy your finish might end up, and how long the whole process might take. When you start your blow-dry with sopping wet hair it takes a lot longer to dry and adds to the frizz potential. You should always blow-dry on damp hair, which can be achieved by wrapping your locks in a hair towel pre-dry, or utilizing a “rough dry” before you start sectioning and blowing out.

A Touch Too Much

Once your hair is completely dry, DO. NOT. TOUCH. IT. Let those strands cool! A famous stylist once said, “Hot hair is like wet paint,” and it’s true. The more you touch your freshly dried strands, the more you will smudge the end result. Frizzies, flyaways, and any round brush or smoothing work you’ve done will be compromised.

Instead, wait for your mane to cool down, or blast your strands with cool air button included on most blow dryers. However, if you find a few flyaways or frizzy sections, you can learn how to fix frizzy hair after blow-drying. Don’t be afraid to mist your hands with a little hairspray, or a dime-sized amount of finishing balm, and tap that at your part line and/or run throughout your ends for a smooth, sealed, and frizz-free finish. Once you’re done, stand back and marvel in the mirror at a job well done (A+).

The perfect blow-dry starts with a perfect foundation. HERE’s how to section your mane for the best blowout!