The Best Heat Protectants For Natural Hair

Heat styling natural hair without first applying a protectant is like driving a car without a seatbelt or riding a bike without a helmet — a bad, ill-advised idea that's just not worth it. Whether you straighten your 'do once a year, or on the regular, using hot tools on natural strands can leave you with an altered curl pattern, dry texture, and breakage.

While it's not a guarantee, a good heat protectant in your corner can help mitigate damage when you want to go bone straight, craft bouncy curls, or opt for smooth waves. They work by creating a shield against the high temps while simultaneously strengthening. We've rounded up our top picks at every price point, ahead.

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Carol's Daughter Pracaxi Nectar Straight Blow Dry Cream



This formula from Carol's Daughter is like a styling cream, moisturizer, and heat protectant in one. The creamy formula has pracaxi and olive oil to quickly and effectively smooth frizz and flyaways, so you spend less time with heat on your hair.
Carol's Daughter Straight Blow Dry Cream$11.99 Buy

DryBar Hot Toddy Heat Protectant Lotion



We love the DryBar Hot Toddy Spray, but we've found that the cream formula is ideal for thicker textures. Coat each section of your hair with a quarter-sized amount of the lotion to add softness and shine before a blowout. The best part? It has notes of jasmine, sandalwood, and vanilla that smell as good as perfume.
DryBar Hot Toddy Heat Protectant Lotion$30.00 Buy

OGX Protecting + Silky Blowout Quick Drying Thermal Spray



In this purple bottle is hydrolyzed silk and rice proteins, which strengthen and protect strands up to 450 degrees. If you're looking for something lightweight to prep your hair for a silk press, mist this on small sections before picking up the blowdryer. Then, once you pass the flat iron through your hair, each strand will feel like — you guessed it — silk.
OGX Protecting + Silky Blowout Quick Drying Thermal Spray$8.99 Buy

It's A 10 Miracle Leave-In Plus Keratin



Consider this your does-it-all styler. The cream-like spray has sunflower seed extract, silk amino acids, and keratin to hydrate, seal cuticles, and improve manageability before heat styling. It also doubles as a detangler and styling cream, which you can use even if you aren't using hot tools.
It's a 10 Miracle Leave-In Plus Keratin$20.99 Buy
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Pantene Pro-V Gold Series Thermal Heat Protector Infused with Argan Oil



This mist is infused with argan oil to add a weightless shine to your hair. It nourishes, hydrates, and protects hair from heat up to 450 degrees. Strands are so soft and smooth, we hardly need any additional styling products.
Pantene Thermal Heat Protector Infused with Argan Oil$9.94 Buy
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