How to Blow Dry Curly Hair, Part 1

Learn how to blow dry curly hair from professional stylist Joy La Rosa in this Howcast curly hair tutorial, part one of a two-part series.

I’m going to show you how to blow-dry curly hair. What we’ve done is fresh out of the shower, shampooed, conditioned. I’ve also distributed product through the hair. Then what I’ve done after that is I’ve done a couple of twists, just some light little twists to distribute the product all the way to the end of the hair. I like that with the diffuser set because it aerates the roots really nicely. If you weren’t going to twist I would definitely recommend just kind of raking your hands through the hair, trying to get a little bit of lift out the root as opposed to brushing it down and having it super tight to the head.

A couple of reasons you would diffuse your hair would be: you get more body, you get a stronger curl pattern. So what we’re going to do for Casey is we’re going to blow-dry the hair and we’re going to blow-dry one section tilting the head, and then we’re going to do the other side, and then we’re going to flip upside down. The reason I like this technique is because it’s going to give her a little bit more control on the sides and around her face, but it’s going to give her a nice little lift here in the back. If you just want your curls as big as you can get them, then you would go all the way upside down and blow-dry completely that way.

There are a couple of different kinds of diffusers. There are diffusers like this that have almost a bowl shape to them, and then they have these little tongs hanging out. Then there are some that are almost flat here and the tongs really hang out. For Casey we’re using one that’s kind of in between that, so it’s got a little bit of a dent to it and the little fingers are hanging out.

Now the diffuser is different than a blow-dryer. What a blow-dryer does is it concentrates the air in one spot and moves the hair around. What the diffuser does is it moves the air around and concentrates the hair in the same place. So you could blow-dry right up against her head and you wouldn’t see any hair moving around. So that’s great for curls because you want to maintain its shape as best you can.

One thing to remember when you’re blow-drying curly hair, you always want to set your speed to low and your heat to high. The reason you want to do that is you still want to keep the airflow as gentle as possible so that the hair is as perfect as it can be. The heat needs to be high because it will dry your hair quicker.

As I’m going through the hair, I’m really going to be concentrating on the parts that I know take the longest to dry. For most of us, that’s the root and that’s right at the back of the neck. So when you diffuse, you really usually get the hair about 80 to 90 percent dry, just depending on which works best for you. Some people like to twist the hair as they go. I would recommend that if you have very fine hair that’s only kind of wavy. You can twist it and then blow the diffuser on it and that should help. Other than that, I’m going to let the diffuser do all of the work. I’m going to let the tongs here lift the hair at the root, but the less that you’re involved with messing with the hair, the better the result.