Breaking News: Air-Drying Your Hair Is Actually Bad for It

Quick question. When it comes to damaging your hair, which is worse: blow-drying or air-drying? Assaulting your hair with a mini wind tunnel has got to do more damage, right?

Turns out, not so much.

Yep, we were just as surprised as you are. Au naturel air-drying does, in fact, more harm to your hair than your beloved blow-dryer does. The reason? When hair comes into contact with water, it swells. When it swells, it messes with the protein within each strand and leads to damage from the inside out. So the longer your hair is wet, the longer it swells and the greater the chance for damage.

To minimize breakage, aim for a partial blow-dry. Leave your hair alone until it’s about 50 to 75 percent dry. Then use your blow-dryer on its coolest setting until there’s no more moisture left.