10 Best Heat Protectant: Tested & Reviewed In 2024

hair protectant

Is heat styling an indispensable part of your life? Sure, the curls, the twirls, the waves, and the needle straight hair looks great, but all of it comes at a cost. Often irreversible, the damage that heat exposure does to the soft, fibrous hair cannot be taken lightly.

Beyond the lackluster finish and frizzy appearance, consistent heat exposure systematically dismantles the fibers of your hair. There’s a way out, of course – a heat protectant. Products like these create a barrier on the surface the hair shaft to effectively seal in the natural moisture and maintain that eye-catching sleek shine.

But how do you choose the right one for your hair? After all, the market is flooding with hundreds of options, and every haircare brand is tapping into this product market. Don’t worry! We’ve got you covered.

Ecowiser’s editors and hair care expert poured hours of research into hair protectants from 30 different brands. With the plenty of options available to us, we narrowed it down to 10 leading contenders.

Here is the list of 10 best hair protectants, based on factors like application, absorption, efficacy, hair feel, and overall appearance. From sprays and creams to options tailored for fine hair and tight curls, we’re excited to share the heat protectants that have earned our seal of approval. Let’s get scrolling!

10 Best Heat Protectant in 2024: Tested & Reviewed

Whether you’re in need of a versatile heat protectant spray for daily use or a frizz-controlling cream, our top picks include something for everyone. Let’s check them out.

#1 Olaplex No.9 Bond Protector
hair protectant

Best Overall Pick

Ever since Olaplex came out with its heat protectant, the product has been spotted in celebrity vanities and influencer hair care routines multiple times. Best known for its hair-strengthening formulation, the brand’s very own Bond Protector serum does exactly what it says. The product has a lightweight serum that is swiftly absorbed by the hair, and leaves behind no residue.

The best thing about the product is the shine amplification factor that leaves your hair feeling replenished and conditioned after heat styling. Beyond the heat by the machines, the product also claims to protect your hair from pollution, thanks to the presence of red algae extract in its formula. If you’re looking for remarkable softness and proven hair protection, then Olaplex’s Bond Protector is worth a try. 

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#2 Oribe Balm D’Or Heat Styling Shield
hair protectant

Best For Professional Styling

Oribe is a market leader in hair styling products, and for a very good reason. The brand’s heat protectant comes with a lightweight, cream-like texture that is easy to apply on damp hair. The product offers protection from heat damage up to 450 degrees and enhances the hair’s natural bounce and shine. When it comes to the product’s ingredient list, Oribe doesn’t disappoint, as it comes with the brand’s signature complex, plant collagen, and cassis and sandalwood oils.

A displeasing feature for most is the fragrance, which transfers onto the hand while application. However, it does come with a single wash. We added this product to the list because of its remarkable performance in leaving our editor’s hair soft, healthy, and beautifully styled with high-heat styling tools.

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#3 Bumble and bumble Invisible Oil Primer
hair protectant

Best For Colored Hair.

Protecting colored hair for heat styling is tricky. Which is why we’ve included Bumble and bumble’s primer in our list. The product offers heat protection against styling tools and comes with special UV protection to safeguard against color fading during extended outdoor exposure. What made us fans is the spray dispenser that squirts out a light and milk-like serum directly onto the hair, facilitating easy application and distribution. Although, don’t let the opaque serum fool you, as the product develops a slight grip when rubbed into the hands.

While we love the way it excels in smoothing and softening, the product’s frizz reduction properties is where it loses our vote of confidence. Nonetheless, it remains a worthy investment for maintaining vibrant, healthy-looking hair.

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#4 Gisou Heat Protecting Spray
hair protectant

Best For Lean Hair

If you’ve got really lean hair that can’t handle greasy products, we have something for you as well. Gisou’s hair protector comes with an ultra-light formula that is dispensed through a very fine mist. This ensures a delicate coating across the surface, without saturating the hair. Its ingredient profile includes propolis, a nutrient-rich resin produced by bees known for its hair-strengthening properties.

A negative worth mentioning here is the price point, which is certainly on the higher end. Nonetheless, it remains an exceptional choice for those seeking lightweight heat protectants without compromising on efficacy. The brand advises spraying this product from an arm’s length away to prevent over-saturation, which is a helpful tip. However, this could be attributed to my caution in applying too much product.

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#5 Living Proof Restore Perfecting Spray
hair colorant

Best For Intense Damage Reversal

Living Proof’s Restore Perfecting Spray is suitable for hair of all kinds, shapes, and sizes. The product is a weightless mist that is enriched with amino-rich beet root extract and other plant extracts and offers natural nourishment to your hair. What we also noted is the presence of glycerin, which replenishes and hydrates the hair, without weighing it down. This light spray distributes effortlessly over the surface.

We particularly recommend it for straight and semi-curly/wavy hair due to its lightweight and non-greasy formula. We were pleasantly surprised by the absence of smoke or burning smell during drying and straightening. Post-heat styling, it makes the hair feel actually lighter, which is indeed a delightful discovery.

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#6 Kérastase Résistance Ciment Thermique Blow Dry Primer
hair protectant

Best For Curly Hair

This one for the curly-haired girls! We can understand the struggle, and that’s why we picked Kérastase primer for you. Designed to provide ample moisture without disrupting your natural curl pattern, this primer has a pro-keratin complex that’s rich in protein and amino acids, alongside ceramides and plant sap. Together, these ingredients strengthen and support the hair structure while smoothing signs of damage.

The texture feels similar to milk, and effortlessly glides through the hair without leaving any residue. Just a dime-sized amount is sufficient to shield against heat damage, tame frizz and flyaways, and soften strands. Although the floral scent is potent initially, it dissipates after styling.

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#7 Mizani Heat Screen Hair Protectant Spray
hair protectant

Best For Natural Hair

Mizani’s hair protectant made it to our list because of its special focus on virgin hair care. If you have coily or natural hair, hydration without weighing down your strands is important. Enter Mizani Heat Screen Hair Protectant Spray, tailored to address the dryness often experienced with coily hair while providing effective heat protection.

The product is infused with rose water, and a single spray offers gentle hydration from roots to ends without leaving a greasy residue. What we loved the most is its ability to shield against heat up to 450 degrees, and the UV filters incorporation to safeguard against sun damage.

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#8 Shu Uemura Netsu Design Blow Dry Cream
hair protectant

Best For Thinned Hair

This was an instant favorite for our team at Ecowiser. Shu Uemura Netsu Blow Dry Cream is great for those with fine or thinning hair. Its weightless, silky texture effortlessly distributes through the hair, devoid of any greasy or sticky residue upon application. Notably, our editors lauded its impressive shine factor, with one even forgoing her usual hair oil application post-drying. Another tester appreciated its ability to expedite her hair drying time.

It’s impressive how the product caters to a variety of hair types, from fine to thick, and delivers on both performance and scent. Furthermore, the delicate floral scent adds an extra touch of luxury, leaving others curious about the secret to your fragrant locks.

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Check out: Top 8 Sustainable Conditioners of 2024 For a Frizz-Free Mane

#9 Verb Glossy Shine Spray with Heat Protection
heat protectant

Best For Everyday Use

Verb’s lightweight heat protectant is a versatile solution for protecting hair from the cruel heat while adding shine and bounce. The inclusion of peach and rosehip oils, along with squalane, suggests a formula that not only shields against heat but also nourishes and hydrates the hair. The spray also detangles and makes hair easy to comb through is a big plus, especially for those with fine hair prone to tangling.

Overall, it seems like a promising option for those looking for a convenient spray-on heat protectant that delivers on multiple fronts, from protection to hydration to shine. However, it’s worth noting the feedback about potential greasiness at the roots after use. This could be a consideration for those with oilier hair types or those who tend to struggle with excess oiliness.

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#10 Amika Blockade Heat Defense Serum Tester
hair protectant

Best For Hydration

Amika’s heat protectant serum isn’t as moisturizing as some other options on our list (though it does contain sea buckthorn, a shrub that produces berries rich with Omega fatty acids), but our editors loved that it can be used on damp or dry strands, making it convenient for midday touch-ups. It disappears into hair, going to work to tame frizz and add a decent amount of shine.

Though we do wish that it felt a bit more hydrating like other serums and creams, it remains a great choice for people with fine hair or those who don’t need an extra boost of moisture. It looks a bit greasy when applied to dry hair, but it absorbs as I apply heat and leaves me with smooth, shiny hair. It is recommended to use double the amount to make sure it is distributed evenly throughout the hair. 

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How To Apply Hair Protectant: A Step-by-Step Guide

How To Apply Hair Protectant: A Step-by-Step Guide

Now that you have the tools to get started, let’s talk about how you can apply hair protectant correctly to safeguard your precious locks from heat damage. Here’s a step by step guide:

Step 1: Start with clean, towel-dried hair. Wash your hair with a gentle shampoo and conditioner, then gently towel-dry your hair to remove excess water.

Step 2: Divide your hair into sections to ensure even application of the protectant. You can use clips or hair ties to keep each section separate.

Step 3: Take a small amount of the hair protectant product onto your palms. Rub your hands together to distribute the product evenly. Then, starting from the roots, gently work the product through each section of your hair, focusing on the mid-lengths and ends where the hair is most prone to damage.

Step 4: Use a wide-tooth comb to distribute the protectant evenly throughout your hair. This ensures that every strand is coated with the product, providing maximum protection.

Step 5: Allow your hair to air dry or use a blow dryer on a low heat setting to dry your hair completely before using any heat styling tools. This helps to activate the protective properties of the product.

Happy Styling!

Your locks are precious, and we hope you’ll settle on either of these products as soon as possible. Remember, using a hair protectant is just one part of maintaining healthy hair. It’s also essential to follow a good hair care routine, including regular trims, using heat styling tools sparingly, and using moisturizing products to keep your hair hydrated and nourished.

Hey! Like haircare brands that are people and planet friendly? Check out our selection of 5 best sustainable hair care brands in the market right now.

Frequently Asked Questions 

  1. What is the best heat protectant for hair?

The best heat protectant for your hair largely depends on your hair type, the level of heat styling you regularly engage in, and any specific concerns you may have such as dryness or damage. Look for products that contain ingredients like silicones, which create a barrier between your hair and heat, and proteins, which can strengthen and protect your strands. 

  1. What can I use as a natural heat protectant?

If you prefer natural options, there are several ingredients you can use to protect your hair from heat styling with coconut oil, argan oil, shea butter, and aloe vera. These natural heat protectants help protect hair from heat damage while also soothing the scalp and promoting hair growth. Apply a small amount to damp hair before blow-drying or using hot tools.

  1. How to use heat protection spray?

The best way to use a heat protection is to start with clean, damp hair, holding the spray bottle about 6-8 inches away, spraying it evenly, and combing through the hair with a wide-tooth comb to distribute the product evenly through your hair.

  1. What is the best heat protectant for hair growth?

While heat protectants primarily focus on shielding the hair from damage caused by heat styling, certain ingredients can also promote hair growth and overall hair health. Look for heat protectants that contain nourishing ingredients such as Biotin (Vitamin B7), Vitamin E, and antioxidants like Green Tea Extract or Vitamin C, hydrating ingredients, Panthenol (Pro-Vitamin B5) and Hyaluronic Acid.

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Shavy Jain

Shavy Jain is the content manager at Ecowiser. Boasting five years of experience in the content marketing industry, she is focused on presenting information about sustainable alternatives so buyers can make the wisest choices.

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