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 –  Curly and wavy hairstyles can look gorgeous when they are perfectly coiffed, but curls can pose challenges when it comes time to style. Often, curls and waves become frizzy and difficult to manage, especially when exposed to the heat and air movement of a hair dryer. Using one of the diffusers available here at drugstore.com can help you avoid the side effects of blow-drying curly hair for beautiful results.
read more about diffusers »  |  resource library for hair care »

What Is a Diffuser?

A diffuser is an attachment that is placed onto the barrel of a hair dryer prior to styling. There are two types of diffusers available on the market. The first type is the finger diffuser, which is shaped like a shallow bowl and has vertical pegs called fingers placed across its surface. The second type of diffuser is the grill diffuser. This type is shaped like a disc and has a flat surface covered with a plastic or metal grill. Finger diffusers are more frequently used by stylists. As a result, most grill diffusers are sold in two-piece sets along with a finger diffuser.

What Kind of Diffuser Should I Buy?

When shopping for a diffuser, you'll need to read the product description carefully to ensure that the particular model can be used with any hair dryer, as some types are constructed specifically for use with one particular blow-dryer model or for use only with hair dryers made by one particular brand.

Why Use a Diffuser?

Diffusers get their name from the effect that they have on the airflow from a blow-dryer. As air comes out of the hair dryer's barrel, the diffuser spreads it out, so that it covers a wider area and travels at a faster speed. This keeps the air from disturbing the formation of curls and waves, so that they are more even and regular in shape. In addition, diffusers speed up drying times and reduce the likelihood of frizz forming while you style. A finger diffuser provides the added benefit of lifting and separating curls to create a neater style.

How to Use a Diffuser

If you choose a grill diffuser, you can use your hair dryer in the exact same way that you ordinarily would, keeping the blow-dryer 6 to 8 inches away from your hair to reduce heat exposure. Using a finger diffuser requires a different technique. First, you'll want to divide your hair into sections. Start drying by placing one section in the bowl of the diffuser with your hair tilted to the side. Carefully move the diffuser up along the curl to dry the roots. When the section is dry, remove it from the bowl and move on to the next section.

Tips for Using a Diffuser

In order to get the best results from your blow-drying with a diffuser, keep the following tips in mind. Avoid rubbing your hair with a towel before drying, as this can encourage frizz to form. Instead, comb through your curls with a wide-toothed comb or a pick and allow them to air dry for a few minutes before blow-drying. Use a curl-defining styling aid with thermal protective properties or a curl-defining product and a separate thermal protector prior to blow-drying.

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