Hair steaming is the act of using heat to open up the hair shaft. This process allows hair products to penetrate and work better towards hair goals.
The hair steaming process involves using water and heat in a gentle infusion to lift the hair cuticle.
Hair steaming is useful for all hair types whether natural, relaxed, chemically treated, or color-treated.
Hair Steaming Benefits
1. Hair Steaming Promotes Elasticity
Hair steamers promote elasticity. Elasticity is a sign of healthy hair. If your hair is dry, limp, and looks lifeless, steaming will improve hair texture greatly.
Hair steaming will also make hair more supple and strengthen weak strands over time.
2. Hair Steaming Improves Moisture Retention
Steaming helps keep hair soft and moisturized.
If you have a dry hair issue, regular steaming with the right products and natural oils can go a long way in helping your hair retain moisture.
3. Hair Steaming Can Restore Damaged Hair
If you straightened your hair and unsure if you have heat damage, hair steaming can help determine if your hair can revert or it’s time to snip.
Sometimes overly dry hair can masquerade as heat damaged hair. Read How to Blow Dry Hair Without Heat Damage for more information on this.
4. Hair Steaming Boosts Blood Flow to Follicles
The moist heat provided by hair steamers encourages blood flow to the scalp area and follicles.
5. Hair Steaming Reduces Hair Breakage
The dryer hair is, the more likely it is to start breaking off. Frequent hair steaming sessions will eliminate dry hair.
Effectively moisturized hair means less breakage when handling.
What To Look For in a Hair Steamer?
Sold on hair steaming yet? Before you go shopping for one, here are 6 things you should look out for before buying a hair steamer.
1. Large Hood
A hair steamer should have a large hood so you can get all of your hair under there especially if you’re going to pile it on top of your head.
2. At Least 1 Year’s Warranty
A good hair steamer should come with at least a year’s warranty so you can return it if something goes wrong.
While that isn’t the normal case, sometimes you do get a defective product or it goes broke after only a few uses.
If the warranty offered on the hair steamer is less than a year, don’t bother with it.
3. Look Out for Auto Functions
Choose a hair steamer with a timer so the process is more effective for you.
If it doesn’t have a timer, then one that auto shuts off or makes a sound once the water container is empty.
4. Adjustable Head
Make sure the hair steamer stand is adjustable so you can move it up and down to suit the area of your home where you decide to use it.
5. Easy to Move Around
It would be nice if the hair steamer has wheels too so you don’t have to carry it around your home.
6. Easy to Assemble
It should be easy to assemble and disassemble if necessary. No one really has the time to spend an hour putting together a simple hair steamer every week.
These are the basic things to look out for in a good standalone professional hair steamer.
How to Use Professional Hair Steamers at Home
- Follow the directions of the manufacturer.
- Start with clean hair so the steaming process is more effective.
- Use distilled water or bottled water. It facilitates a better flow of steam.
- Make sure you get all of your hair under the steamer so the heats get into all your strands.
- 30 – 45 mins/session is fine. Any more is overkill. If you have trouble sitting still that long, read a book or watch something on your iPad.
- Once you come out from under the hair steamer, wait a few minutes before rinsing out the conditioner or oil.
- There’s some debate on whether one should use a shower cap/cling film or not but personally, I preferred without the cap. I felt my strands were softer afterward.
- Steam your hair at least once a week to get the full range of benefits especially if you have super dry hair. Any more could lead to over-moisturized hair which is just as bad.
Related Content: Portable Hair Steamers: A Look at the Best on the Market
Which Professional Hair Steamer is the Best?
There are quite a few professional hair steamers on the market. Based on the tips above, below are the best recommendations.
You can click on each product image for more information on the hair steamer.
If you’re having a budget crunch and want cheaper options, check out the best portable hair steamers.