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What Are the Best Tips to Towel Dry Hair?

Alex Tree
Updated May 21, 2024
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Some of the best tips to towel dry hair are to pat the hair instead of rubbing or twisting it, use multiple towels, and apply an anti-frizz product once the hair is near-dry. Being gentle with wet hair can leave it tamer and looking better overall than quickly rubbing the towel over the head. Also, people who have medium to long hair sometimes find that using two towels leads to faster towel drying. In addition, applying an anti-frizz product can be another safeguard against frizzy hair. Lastly, after towel drying, air drying is the healthiest method of finishing drying the hair.

Towel drying hair might seem like a simple task, but the truth is that many people go about it wrong. In fact, television and movie characters are often seen vigorously rubbing their hair with a towel, which is a good way to achieve dull, frizzy hair. By gently but firmly patting the hair with the towel instead of rubbing or tightly twisting it, the hair shaft will lay flatter and therefore be shinier once dry. In addition, there is less chance of breakage that can lead to split ends.

Sometimes it is also necessary to use more than one towel to towel dry hair. Someone who has long, waist-length hair has more water to absorb than someone who has an ear-length cut. Even a high quality towel can only absorb so much water before using it is a waste of time. Switching to a dry bath towel, or a hand towel if little water is left in the hair, can help towel dry hair faster. Likewise, people who have short hair can stick to hand towels or move to another end of a bath towel for a drier spot.

It can be useful to use an anti-frizz product when a person is trying to avoid making his or her hair frizzy after towel drying. While using proper drying technique can go a long way, the use of moisturizing or anti-frizz products can add an additional safeguard. In addition, the use of conditioners and similar products, both inside and outside of the shower can be beneficial when trying to towel dry hair.

Some people blow dry their hair after towel drying to finish the job. To keep the process eco-friendly and healthy for hair, however, air drying is generally the route to take. Air drying basically means the hair is allowed to dry on its own after towel drying, sometimes with a bit of styling gel.

BeautyAnswered is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Alex Tree
By Alex Tree
Andrew McDowell is a talented writer and BeautyAnswered contributor. His unique perspective and ability to communicate complex ideas in an accessible manner make him a valuable asset to the team, as he crafts content that both informs and engages readers.

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Discussion Comments
By burcidi — On Jul 26, 2013

Towels with polyester don't dry hair at all. I only use 100% cotton towels. They absorb water very quickly and dry quickly too.

By discographer — On Jul 26, 2013

I twist and rub while towel drying all the time. It's fine because I have very short hair. I imagine this can be bad for people with long hair. I just feel that it works better when I rub and twist. I also feel energetic when I do this, I think I get more blood circulation to my head.

I always use hair gel or spray afterward anyway, so I never get frizzy hair.

By bluedolphin — On Jul 25, 2013

My sister will rub her hair like crazy while towel drying and then she will wonder why she gets huge tangles.

I learned how to properly towel dry hair when I took a beauty course. The proper way to do it is to throw the head forward and wrap the towel around the hair. Then, the towel should be gently pressed on the hair so that the water can be absorbed. Rubbing is not necessary at all!

It also helps to keep the towel on the head for ten minutes so that it can remove all the excess moisture.

Alex Tree
Alex Tree
Andrew McDowell is a talented writer and BeautyAnswered contributor. His unique perspective and ability to communicate complex ideas in an accessible manner make him a valuable asset to the team, as he crafts content that both informs and engages readers.
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