This article is about the best heat protectants for hair extensions in 2023.
If you have extensions, you know that heat styling is an inevitable part of keeping them looking sleek, smooth, and healthy.
It is also the reason they look dry, tired, and damaged. So what do you do? Heat style, but using a good heat protectant is the short answer.
The question, ‘Which heat protectant?’ needs a slightly more in-depth answer, though.
But never fear, I’m here to walk you through it.
I’m Bianca, an extension-loving human that has been wearing, learning about, and installing extensions since 2006. Over the years, I have worked out through many trials and errors what makes a good heat protectant for your extra-length locks.
I think HSI Professional Heat Protector is a brilliant all-rounder that works hard as both a leave-in conditioner and a powerful thermal protectant. Not a big fan of the Argan smell? Don’t you worry. I have a few other options on the list to entice you with.
Excited? So read on for good hair days!
- HSI Professional Heat Protector (Best Overall)
- Hot Tools Heat Protectant (Best for Dry Hair)
- L’Oréal Paris Iron Straight Heatspray (Best for Value)
- Chi 44 Iron Guard (Best for Straightening Irons)
- Sun Bum Heat Protector Spray (Best for Vegan & Cruelty-Free)
- BOLD UNIQ Purple Thermal Spray (Best for Blondes)
Best Heat Protectant For Hair Extensions Reviewed
In this section, I will go over my top picks for the best heat protectant for hair extensions, together with a detailed review for each product.
- Key features: Shine, detangles, frizz control, breakage control, heat protection
- Volume: 8 Ounces
- Texture: Brittle, medium to thick hair
- Best for: Overall
This sulfate-free, phosphate-free, and paraben-free heat protector has argan oil as the main ingredient, so it works as a leave-in conditioner too.
This thermal protector works well with both hairdryers and straightening irons up to 450F.
As well as being color-safe, it is suitable for all-natural hair types and human hair extensions.
If this all-around wonder protector has a downfall, the argan smell is a bit over-powering. It does calm down after about 5 minutes, though.
However, if you can deal with the argan smell for 5 minutes, this nourishing, enriching, softening, shining, detangler thermal protector is both long-lasting and great value for money and is EASILY my top pick of a very strong bunch.
- Key features: Avocado & Olive Oil
- Volume: 8.8 Ounces
- Texture: Damaged hair that is prone to dryness
- Best for: Dry Hair
This lightweight spray works as both a primer and a leave-in treatment. It can be used on both human hair extensions, and your wet and dry natural hair too.
The heat protector works up to about 450F and is infused with avocado and olive oils to help hydrate and quench dry, dull hair. These oils add shine, softness, and flexibility to hair. They also help smooth the cuticles down again.
This is brilliant if you need lots of moisturizing on damaged and brittle hair.
So use this heat protectant sparingly, as too much of this and your hair extensions will make it too oily and heavy.
- Key features: 3-day style
- Volume: 5.9 Ounces
- Texture: Caucasian to African American
- Best for: Value
If you are after a good heat protector on a budget, this is for you. This Iron Straight Heatspray delivers humidity blocking and thermal protection, which keeps your hair extensions shiny, healthy, and sleek for up to 3 days.
Another bonus is that this heat protector works up to 450F, and it is unscented, so won’t overpower those with sensitive noses. This heat protector also works on a variety of hair types for everyone, and a range of hair types in between. Making it a great product to use on both your extensions and natural hair.
The one complaint I have is that if you get this stuff on a tiled floor, it turns your house into a slip and slide, lickety-split.
Pop a towel on the floor before spraying this heat protectant into your hair if you have a tiled floor. Or else, spray it outside!
- Key features: Paraben-free
- Volume: 8 Ounces
- Texture: Fine, flyaway hair
- Best for: Straightening irons
Chi says this IRON GUARD thermal protectant works with straighteners, particularly, as they work together to infuse the hair core with minerals and help your hair extensions remain shiny by sealing the hair cuticles.
Chi thermal protector gives your hair extensions superior thermal protection with no added build up, due to its weightless formula.
I’d say you need something more robust for very thick hair, as this is better suited to fine hair. Also, if you tend to blowdry only, this doesn’t work the way it should and can leave your hair sticky without the straightening irons.
- Key features: Added vitamins & sea minerals. Vegan, Gluten, Cruelty, Sulfate and Paraben Free
- Volume: 6 Ounces
- Texture: Fine to medium hair
- Best for: Vegan & Cruelty-Free
Sun Bum Heat protectant uses natural ingredients and minerals to enrich, nourish and protect your hair extensions and natural hair from the core out.
This spray will also cut your blowdry time in half and leave you with wonderful-smelling healthy locks.
Sun Bum’s products are all free from nasty ingredients and even nastier practices, such as testing on animals. They use healthy, natural ingredients to create a lightweight formula that protects your hair extensions against heat and frizz.
If you have very thick or curly hair, you may need a more robust product as this is very lightweight.
- Key features: Thermal protector that minimizes brassy tones
- Texture: Fine to thick blonde hair
- Volume: Best: Blondes
Blondes may have more fun, but they also need to work harder when keeping their hair healthy, soft, and shiny. Bold Uniq has made the chore of keeping blonde hair extensions healthy and brassy tone free by combining a stellar thermal protector with their iconic purple pigment to add another layer of toning to your hair care journey.
The formula is easy to use and can be sprayed onto wet or dry hair, you can apply it to your natural hair as well.
This super conditioning and hair-kind thermal protector is also paraben, sulfate, and cruelty-free. PETA-approved and 100% vegan, this protector is kind to both your hair and the planet.
The purple spray is both the best and worst part of this product.
Yay for perfectly platinum hair, but Boo for my purple stained towels. Make sure to clean up any overspray immediately.
However, if you can deal with that, this is a wonderful product for premium hair extensions and a healthy environment.
Best Heat Protectant for Hair Extensions – Buying Guide
Here are a few things to consider when looking at different heat protectants for hair extensions.
There are many heat protectants for you to pick from. However, to quell decision fatigue and overwhelm, it’s best to make a list of a few priorities to make narrowing down your choice easy and quick.
- Is either a strong scent or no scent, important to you?
- Is your hair blonde and very dry?
- Is your hair thick and curly?
- Are you concerned with being vegan and cruelty-free?
- Do you have fine, flyaway hair?
- How often do you heat style your hair?
Do you see where I’m going with this?
Having a few key essential priorities will help you quickly decide without pouring over them for too long.
Remember the rule of thumb that thicker, more textured hair tends to do better with a creme. Whereas thinner and finer hair tends to do better with a weightless spray.
If you can put up with the Argan smell, then I think HSI Professional Heat Protector is by far the best all-rounder on the list. It works as a leave-in conditioner and protects your hair from heat up to 450F.
It leaves hair noticeably softer and shiner after use, and the smell of Argan isn’t noticeable after 2-5 minutes.
Do you have a favorite heat protectant that I missed?
Did you try any of these out?
Let me know in the comments below!