Can You Use a Hot Brush on Wet Hair?

By Leah Williams •  Updated: 06/18/22

Quick Answer: You shouldn’t use a hot brush on wet hair!

I know you’re in a morning rush and you just want to dry your wet hair quickly without any fuss. Perhaps a hot brush is so convenient to use?

But really you shouldn’t be using hot air brushes or flat irons to dry your wet or damp hair as they’re not designed for that!

So, if you’re asking… can you use a hot brush on wet hair? This article is for you!

For a start, here’s what Lucky Curl has to say:

Hot air brushes do not have the power of a traditional blow dryer. For that reason, you shouldn’t be using it on wet hair. 

Let me explain…

What is a hot brush?

A hot brush is usually designed for styling your hair. This tool is good for making your hair smooth, giving it a nice volume, and also straightening or drying the hair, depending on the hot brush.

A hot air brush is a versatile hot air styler tool that is also described as a combination of a hair brush and a blow dryer. It’s typically designed as a round volumizing brush or a hot air paddle brush with a motor – like you would find on a hair dryer.

To achieve the perfect hair results, all you have to do is run the hot bristle brush slowly on your slightly damp hair. The brush guides your hair while the heated plates smoothen and polish the hair cuticle to achieve sleek and shiny hair.

Important: Air dry or rough dry your hair to at least 80% before using the hot air brush to avoid hair damage. 

Can you use a hot air brush on wet hair?

Thermal straightening brushes with ceramic plates should NEVER be used on wet hair. So, using a hot air brush on your wet hair is really asking for trouble!

Wet hair tends to be fragile and applying heated plates to it can cause over-heating, shatter the hair cuticle, and worst case, ruin your hair.

Anyway, straightening wet hair does not produce the desired results and can cause damage too. As a rule of thumb, all heat styling tools except the blow dryer shouldn’t be used on wet hair.

Can you use a hot brush on dry hair?

It’s perfectly safe to use a hot brush on dry hair provided you’re using a thermal hair straightening brush with ceramic plates – it’s one of the best hot brushes you can find. As with any hot styling tool, it is always recommended to use a heat protectant spray or serum before you start styling with a hot air brush.

This type of hot brush works like a flat iron making your dry hair smooth and polished with less styling time and heat damage.

However, it is highly recommended to use a hot brush on damp hair as it’s more malleable and easier to style than dry hair.

Are heated air brushes bad for your hair?

As mentioned earlier on, any form of heating tool or hot air styler is bad for your hair. However, we can consider the heated brushes safe to use compared to blow dryers, straighteners, and flat irons.

A smooth heated brush is less damaging to your hair because it uses less heat than hair straighteners and curling irons. They’re designed to glide smoothly through your hair and heat is at the base of the brush or bristles. With that said, hot air brushes can reduce frizzy hair, dryness, and straw-like ends.

For heat-damaged or color-treated hair, the ionic heated brush is the best to use because of its reduced styling time.

What happens if you apply heat to wet hair?

Applying heat to wet hair causes the water in your hair to pop which is what happens when you hear the sizzling noise while blow-drying or using the hot brush on your hair.

This happens because the water evaporates while the heat touches your hair, as a result, hair strands are breaking, and in turn, cause damage to your hair.

This method won’t literally kill your hair right away but this is a bad idea and is going to be damaging to your hair long-term.

Key Takeaway

Hot brushes are not designed to be used on wet hair – it’s not as powerful as a regular blow dryer which dries the hair in a few minutes.

Wet hair is fragile and applying heat to it can cause dryness, frizz, and heat damage. Plus, styling while your hair is soaking wet will not produce the desired results.

Pre-dry or rough dry your hair before picking up the hot brush. Also, be sure to use a heat protectant spray before going anywhere near heat styling tools.

As you know, heat exposure is bad for your hair. Still, there’s no need to completely give up using hot brushes and hair straighteners. Just be careful around them and be sure to choose the best hot brushes to achieve the desired results and avoid unruly hair.

If you’re on the lookout for the best hair dryer brush, check out our list of recommendations!

Leah Williams

Leah Williams is the founder of Lucky Curl and has been in the hair care and styling industry for the last 15 years. Since then, she has developed incredible expertise and a deep understanding of how to treat and style the most difficult hair types and is passionate about sharing her knowledge with the readers of Lucky Curl.

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