Do Blow Dryers Cause Hair Loss? (Expert’s View & Tips)

It’s quite natural to wonder, “Do hair dryers cause hair loss?” especially if you use one daily.

And, if you are indeed losing hair of late, it’s apt to consider whether your blowdryer is at fault.

With that in mind, below is the result of my detailed analysis of the impact blow dryers can have on your hair.

Just keep reading!

Can a Blow Dryer Cause Hair Loss?

To state it, yes. A blow dryer can lead to hair loss, but it’s not common!

If you’re using it the right way on healthy hair, then it’s pretty unlikely.

Let’s discuss exactly what “the right way” means.

Safe Heat Settings

As I just stated, a blow dryer will not lead to hair loss unless you’re irritating the scalp or burning your skin.

At the same time, I must reiterate that it holds only when you avoid direct contact with your scalp as much as possible.

So, if you wish to use a blow dryer, I recommend that the blow dryer should be at the very least 15 cm away from your scalp.

That way, you can keep your hair healthy and avoid burning or irritating your scalp [1].

In comparison to natural drying, blow dryers cause detrimental surface damage, raising the question, “Does blow dry damage hair?”

Your damaged hair will then turn brittle and dry out if your scalp is too close to the heating tool during usage.

This does indeed confirm that blow-drying can damage hair, leading to frizzy hair and split ends because the heat from blow dryers will suck out nourishment from the hair tresses [2].

Blow Dryers With Infrared Tech

Variety is abundant today. You can get soft and silky hair using blow dryers with ionic generators.

While these blow dryers make your hair gorgeous, hair loss is minimal. That’s because these blow dryers use infrared heat, which doesn’t require high temperatures to dry your hair [3].

Besides that, I find these blow dryers to be super convenient.

Why? Because I can set my hair using the Cold Shot feature. Plus, the time I take to dry my hair has consistently reduced, thanks to these dryers.

Managing Director of Duke University School of Medicine, Healthcare Professional, and Dermatologist Zoe Draelos recommends using the blow dryers in the lowest possible heat settings [4].

Using Your Blow Dryer Correctly: Precautionary Steps

1. Use a Blow Dryer On Minimal Heat Settings

While maintaining minimal contact, I suggest you limit the blow dryer’s heat settings to medium or, if possible, low.

The reason is that the higher the temperature, the more damage to the hair shaft and the higher the rate of hair fall.

blonde woman using a blow dryer

In situations where you are pressed for time and looking for tips on how to style wet hair in a hurry, it becomes even more crucial to be mindful of the heat settings and techniques used to prevent unnecessary damage while achieving the desired style efficiently.

So long as you’re avoiding direct contact with your scalp and keeping the heat settings low, you shouldn’t lose hair frantically.

2. Limit Your Blow Dryer Usage

I know you want gorgeously styled hair every day, but try to give your poor distressed locks a break from the heat as much as possible.

There are indeed adverse effects regarding the prolonged heat application on your wet hair from these heating tools.

As I’ve already mentioned in the earlier sections, using drying tools that will lessen the drying time will be abundantly helpful for you.

Blow dryers that use thermal or ionic tech are totally game-changers.

3. Blow Dry Your Hair Unidirectionally

Based on my analysis, blowdrying hair in one continuous motion to limit the amount of hair breakage and damage to the strands is extremely effective in combating hair loss.

I blow-dry from the hair root towards the ends while continuously maintaining a 15 cm distance from the scalp. That not only helps me avoid frizz, but it also protects my hair from heat damage.

Knowing how to style hair with a blow dryer correctly can significantly reduce the risk of damage while ensuring a polished and styled look.

Detailed Tips To Prevent Hair Loss Even Further

Now that we know the right way to use a hair dryer let’s look at some other tips on preventing hair loss while using one.

1. Get A Trim

Often, all you need is a good old hair trim. If you have split ends or find it hard to maintain your hair, go ahead and trim a few inches off.

lady having a hair cut

There’s no way to salvage those split ends. Sure, a billion products claim to “mend” them back together, but nothing short of cutting actually reverses them [5].

Plus, hair ends often house high amounts of protein buildup. So, you’ve got nothing to lose and quite a considerable amount to gain.

2. Make Use Of Blow Dryer Heat Protectants

Heat protectants shield your hair by forming a moist and protective layer around it. That way, the hot blow-drying doesn’t damage your hair.

Moreover, the non-aggressive protective or leave-in conditioner makes your hair silkier and shinier after the blowout. That’s because it contains abundant nutrition for your hair tresses.

lady putting on argan oil on her hair tip

3. Try Out Effective Home Remedies

Cleanse your scalp with essential oils such as lavender, clary sage, and peppermint. The application of essential oils boosts hair growth and enhances blood flow to the scalp.

Please, though, never apply essential oils directly to your scalp. They’re too strong, harsh, and can damage your skin.

You MUST use carrier oil. My favorite is sweet almond oil, but I’ve used good old olive oil in a pinch.

You can even try out an effective hair mask that you can easily prepare at home. Here’s one I love:

4. Take A Break (and Call Your Doctor)

If you’re losing too much hair and nothing’s going your way, I strongly advise you to lay off hair products, hair dye, and heat styling tools.

I also recommend calling your doctor for a checkup because sometimes hair loss is a symptom of other medical conditions.


Are there any side effects of using blow dryers?

Yes, there are many side effects of using blow dryers. Extremely dry hair is among the biggest disadvantages of long-term use.
Aside from that, blow dryers can cause dandruff and dry scalp, other than their potential to lead to hair loss and permanent damage.

Is a heat protectant really necessary?

Yes, heat protectants are extremely crucial to maintaining healthier hair. Use a mild shampoo and heat protectant spray to shield your hair from heat damage.
These protective sprays fortify the hair follicles and strands, increase moisture content, and keep the flyaways in check.

Final Verdict

That concludes my guide on whether or not using a hairdryer can lead to hair loss. As is evident, it’s not possible to completely avoid hair loss.

Although, in my opinion, you can limit hair damage and loss to a minimum by following the simple tips I mentioned.

Also, follow a healthy diet, avoid wearing tight buns, and yes! Use a wide-tooth comb.

lady drying her hair using a blow dryer in the bathroom

Do hair dryers cause hair loss? Let us know your opinion on this topic in the comments below!


  • 1. Lee Y, Kim Y-D, Hyun H-J, Pi L, Jin X, Lee W-S. Hair Shaft Damage from Heat and Drying Time of Hair Dryer. Annals of Dermatology [Internet]. 2011 [cited 2021 Dec 8];23:455. Available from:
  • 2. Hussein J. Things you’re doing wrong when blow drying your hair [Internet]. Insider. Insider; 2019 [cited 2021 Dec 8]. Available from:
  • 3. Ricapito M. Expensive Hair Dryers: Are They Worth the Cost? [Internet]. WebMD. WebMD; 2011 [cited 2021 Dec 8]. Available from:
  • 4. Diana Z. Zoe Diana Draelos, MD – Home [Internet]. 2021 [cited 2021 Dec 8]. Available from:
  • 5. Tynan Sinks. You Can’t Repair Split Ends — ​But​ Here’s What You Can Do [Internet]. Vox. Vox; 2015 [cited 2021 Dec 8]. Available from:,hair%20looking%20and%20feeling%20as%20healthy%20as%20possible.
About Olaf Bieschke

Olaf Bieschke is a senior year medical student from Charité University of Berlin in Germany. He has gained professional experience in various hospitals and offices in Germany, Belgium, France, Poland, Brazil and Spain. Currently working on a dr. med. title thesis in neurosurgery. Follow him on LINKEDIN AND FACEBOOK. Learn more about him HERE.

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