Silk press season is here! With the chillier months that fall and winter bring, we don’t have to worry about sweating out our heat-styled looks quite as much. But just because there’s less humidity and moisture in the air, doesn’t mean we shouldn’t take the necessary steps to preserve the bouncy, shiny style. After all, we want to get our money’s worth and make sure it lasts longer than two days, right?
Lurissa Ingrid– pro hair artist for the likes of Gabrielle Union, Ebonee Davis, Topicals, and more– is here to make your life a little bit easier. Below, you’ll find her top 5 tips and techniques– from recommended products to protecting the hair– to ensure your silk press lasts.
Use the right shampoo
Before you schedule your silk press appointment (or at the salon), it is important to cleanse your hair well. A clean scalp and hair shaft is the foundation for a long lasting silk press, or any high heat style you’re into. “My go-to product when doing a silk press is a clarifying shampoo,” Ingrid says. “This preps the hair and cleanses it from all oils, waxes, or creams that build up in our hair during the styling process.” If your hair needs more hydration, Ingrid says, “a Moisturizing shampoo is key to lock hydration back into your hair. This sets you up for the heat styling afterwards.”
Use deep conditioner and leave-in
Conditioning is a must prior to a silk press. A conditioner can help boost shine, prevent breakage, and protect your hair from humidity– which will make your silk press last longer. “I always deep condition and follow up with a leave-in conditioner,” Ingrid says.
The Wizard, a 2-in-1 heat protectant and leave-in conditioner, is Ingrid’s silicone-free go-to. This multi-functional conditioner protects the hair up to 450 degrees. Other conditioners, like The Kure or new Mirrorball conditioner, are a good option for silk presses as their formulas repair damaged hair, prevent future breakage, and boost shine.
According to Ingrid, your silk press can typically last up to 2 weeks with proper care. “Moisture and or humidity will revert your tresses to their natural state,” she says. “So you want to refrain from activities that make you sweat.”
Ingrid recommends The Shield as it’s a humidity blocker formulated specifically for muggy, wet weather or a day at the gym. The anti-humidity spray protects hair up to 450 degrees and is proven to last 24 hours.
Use a scarf at night
“Make sure you cover your hair at night and during vigorous activities such as working out,” says Ingrid. You should wrap your hair around your head and secure your style with a silk or mesh wrap under your scarf.
Monitor your heat level
“If you are trying your silk press at home I would suggest you monitor your heat level on your hot tools to prevent heat damage,” she says. “After you silk press you want to refrain from the use of heat for a while,” she says. “This service shouldn’t be done every week to preserve your natural curl pattern.” In the meantime, Ingrid recommends heatless curls to maintain your look, such as flexi rods, pin curls, or curl formers. To help monitor heat and lower risk of damage, you may want to try the Dyson Corrale™ straightener which has regulated heat control up to 410 degrees.