How to Dry Hair Extensions Like a Pro
by BRENDA L. / FEB 15, 2023
Reading Time: 4 Minutes
Drying your hair extensions correctly helps them feel and look better whilst preventing knots and matting. Most human hair extensions will naturally dry with some texture and a slight kink, so they will need to be dried or styled if you desire silky-smooth locks. Today we’re going to cover everything there is to know about drying your hair extensions properly, and which types of hair extensions can be left to air dry and which cannot.
1. Can You Leave Hair Extensions To Dry Naturally?
Clip-Ins, Ponytails and other temporary hair extensions can be left to air dry as they are not attached to the natural hair. After washing the clip-ins, gently remove any knots and tangles with a detangling hairbrush suitable for hair extensions, then hang them or lay them somewhere warm and dry for 24 hours. I always give my clip-ins a spritz of moisture spray whilst they are still wet before detangling; this not only helps to remove knots, but also reduces frizz and flyaways. Once the hair is dry, you can either wear it with its organic texture (that matches most hair types) style it with your favourite tools.
2. Can You Leave A Weave To Dry Naturally?
Allowing the ends to dry naturally is perfectly fine with these extensions as long as you have thoroughly detangled them; however, you must make sure the roots and attachments are fully dried after every wash.
The reason that Weft hair extensions such as Tape wefts or Weaves should be dried after washing is that bacteria can form around the attachments and fabric if not dried properly; this phenomenon is also known as ‘Weft Rot’. Under no circumstances should you go to bed with wet hair. This applies to all types of permanent hair extensions, as movement during sleep can cause matting to occur.
3. Can You Air Dry Micro Ring Hair Extensions?
Nano Rings and I-Tip Hair Extensions can be left to dry naturally, but I would still recommend drying the roots thoroughly first. Due to their tiny size, a fantastic feature is that they actually mimic the natural hair pattern they are attached to - so if your hair has a wave to it, they will dry in the same way! Allowing the mid-lengths and ends to dry naturally reduces the amount of heat applied to the hair which is better for your extensions in the long run.
It's important to remember that just like our own hair, when it's allowed to air dry, they will have a slightly frizzy texture and a small wave as extensions are not permanently straightened. So if you want a silky, smooth finish, your hair extensions will need some styling, either with a brush whilst blow-drying or with heated tools afterwards. Always use heat protection spray when using heated tools or hair dryers on your extensions to protect them from drying out.
4. How Can You Dry Hair Extensions After Washing?
For the best results, after washing your hair extensions, it's best to completely dry them and then style them with your favourite styling tool. Hair extensions such as Clip-Ins or Ponytails do not need as much washing as your own hair, cleaning them every 12-15 uses is plenty to keep them in tip-top condition which also minimises the use of heat which is better for them. To find out more read “How to wash all types of hair extensions”.
5. How To Dry Nano Ring Hair Extensions?
I've created an easy step-by-step process for drying your Nano hair extensions below which also applies to Tapes, Weaves and Micro Ring Hair Extensions.
- After washing softly pat and squeeze the excess water off the mid-lengths and ends of your hair to help speed up the drying process. Avoid harshly rubbing your hair, especially at the roots as this can cause knots and matting. Stick to squeezing and patting motions.
- Using an extensions-friendly detangling brush, gently brush your hair to remove any knots. It's best to firmly hold the hair above where you are brushing the protect your attachments and reduce tension on the scalp. You can use a moisture spray or leave-in conditioner on the ends to assist with the detangling when brushing wet hair.
- Give the hair a spritz with a good heat protection spray all over then rough dry on medium heat. Keep the direction of the air pointed down towards the ends and never upwards as this can cause the hair to seize up and tangle. Never tip your hair upside down when drying hair extensions.
- Once the hair is 70% dry you can split it into horizontal sections and use a round brush to smooth the mid-lengths and ends working from the underneath to the top. Do not directly touch the hair with the heat from the dryer, instead skim it and the brush as you pull it gently through the ends.
6. How To Blow Dry Hair?
If you do not feel confident blow drying with a round brush, simply section the hair and rough dry each section until it is fully dry. Then you can use your chosen styling tool to either smooth or wave your extensions. Using a large, barrelled tong is a clever hack to get that big bouncy blow-dry look without the effort of a full-on blow-dry! For a more detailed tutorial on blow drying hair check out our blog “How to get the perfect blow dry at home”
Remember that not all hair extensions have the same rules when it comes to drying so it's always best to check this with your stylist before having them applied to make sure you can commit to the correct regime for your chosen set.