Transitioning with Ease: We Spoke to a Licensed Cosmetologist to Put Some Heat Damage Rumors to Rest

The emotional experience of transitioning hair is one like no other. By transitioning, we mean hair reverting from chemical or heat damage back to its natural state. How can anything be so rewarding, liberating, and punishing all at the same time?

Individual accounts of how hair responds to the transition process are as unique as every soul on the planet, and naturally, this leads to a lot of information that works for one and not for all. Whether we accept it or not, the threat of damaged hair raises several concerns. For example, can we repair damaged hair? Can we use heat on our hair without damaging it? Sooo many questions!

Melanin Moi spoke with cosmetologist and founder of Bloom Elements, Nastasha Burrell to discuss and dispel some of the infamous myths of heat damage.


Heat itself is not what causes damage.


KD: There are so many myths surrounding heat damage and hair growth. What would you say are the main hair growth myths in the hair community? 

NB: Omg, one of the main myths I would stay is the belief that dirty hair grows faster and/or better. Absolutely not true! You do not want clogged/smothered hair follicles.

KD: What causes heat damage? What would you consider applying too much heat to your hair? 

NB: Heat itself is not what caused the damage, it’s the improper use of heat that causes damage. For instance, stroking the same piece of hair with a flat iron or heat styling tool is guaranteed to cause damage. This damage can happen in just one sitting.

Man blowdrying young boy's hair

KD: And with severely heat damaged hair, would you say recovery is possible? How can severely heat damaged hair recover?

NB: There is no recovery for severely heat damaged hair. Once those bonds are broken, they cannot be replaced. Heat damage is equivalent to getting a chemical relaxer, which breaks down the bonds in the hair. The damage has to literally grow out. The best thing you can do is treat the hair to help the transition go smoothly.

KD: In regards to hair growth, what would you say are the most important things to do or understand? 

NB: The most important thing to understand is that healthy hair and growth starts with a healthy scalp. Less manipulation to the hair allows it to breathe and grow freely.

KD: What would you say are the best products for someone still using heat on their hair but also hoping to avoid damage?

BLOOM Elements hair restoration line!!

Bloom Elements Restorative Masque for heat damage

Bloom Elements Intense Restorative Treatment Masque $27.00

There isn’t a method or hairstyle that we would say is ‘wrong’ for our hair. What can hurt, however, is the treatment and neglect of hair during styling or maintenance, and this is what will ultimately determine the outcome.

As long as we continue to moisturize, protect, and love our hair — no matter the type — it’ll continue to Bloom and grow.

afro black hair GIF