How to Diffuse Curly Hair for Volume

I bet that at least once you have used a regular hair dryer to dry your curly hair, and let me guess: you end up with a dry, frizzy mess? Yes, I’ve been there too. I wanted my hair to look stunning, not like a bird’s nest.

My friend recommended me to use a diffuser. Thanks to this, I can minimize frizz, create beautiful volume, and highlight my curl definition. It’s a perfect solution if you don’t have time or don’t like to air dry.

Why Use a Hair Diffuser?

Sometimes you might be in a rush and the weather outside is horrible. Going out with wet hair is an easy way to get the flu. Personally, I never liked having wet hair clinging to my neck but didn’t want to have frizzy hair, so for me, the diffuser is a great thing to use.

Moreover, most diffusers can dry hair much faster than a traditional hair blower.

In the beginning, I was a bit confused about how to use my diffuser, but thanks to my friend’s help, I can get the perfect definition and volume in no time. Using a hair diffuser is pretty straightforward, but when you don’t know what you do, you can use it incorrectly. Incorrect usage can lead to loss of curl definition, frizz, or even drying out the hair.

How to Not Use a Diffuser

Before I explain how to use a diffuser to you, let’s focus on the things you shouldn’t do. Don’t skip this part, because, I promise, knowing these tips can help you save a lot of time:

  1. Don’t diffuse straight into your curls – If you use a diffuser and you position it horizontally toward your hair, you are going to spend hours trying to get your hair dry. Curls stick in a group, so if you don’t separate them, the air is not going to have a place to go. That can also destroy the curl definition.
  2. Don’t only use hot air – When your hair is wet, you might feel tempted to use only hot air. It might be good for a while, but if you have to use a diffuser for more than five minutes, you are going to melt. Moreover, when you use only hot air, you are going to need much more time to dry your curls completely. It’s good to use hot air in the beginning, as it helps to seal the hair cuticle. Then you can lower the temperature.
  3. Avoid high settings – Whether it’s a high heat or high blow setting, try to avoid them. Remember that you want beautifully defined curls, with volume, and shine. If you use too high settings, you can expect a lion’s mane instead. High settings make air blow everywhere and your hair is going to get out of control. And we all know what that means… frizzy and dry hair.

A woman with lots of volume in her hair

How to Use a Diffuser

Here is what to do step by step to get your hair looking like it’s straight from a hair salon:

  1. Wash your hair, apply styling products, and scrunch out excess water.
  2. Bend your head and pick a medium amount of hair and place it in the diffuser bowl. Remember to move the dryer around, instead of holding it in just one place.
  3. Lift the diffuser to the scalp. Once it’s in place, turn on the hairdryer at a low speed. Pick a low to medium heat. The process should last around 30 seconds. Thanks to the diffuser, you can catch grouped curls and dry them without burning them, as the air can move freely. Thanks to this technique you can get so much more volume!
  4. Once you are done with the first part, turn off the hairdryer, move on to the next part, and repeat steps two and three until you are done with all your hair.
  5. When your hair is around 80% dry, you might stop the process and add root clips to get extra volume. After this, allow your hair to dry naturally.
  6. Once you are done, place your fingers at the roots and shake to give some fluff to your hairstyle. Shake your head to allow the curls to naturally fall into place.

Extra Tips

Depending on your hair’s length, you might want to pick different diffuser ends. Some diffusers have universal ends so you can adjust them to a hairdryer that you already have. However, most are sold as a combo with a hairdryer.

The pro tip that I learned from my friend is to use a blast of cold air. It sounds very simple, but it can make miracles. Using a cold blast can cool down your curls.

When your curls are cold, it’s easier to identify if they are fully dried or still damp. When you alternate between hot and cold, your hair dries faster.

Remember that trick when you are in rush. Using cold blasts also protects your hair from damage as it closes the cuticle properly.

When it comes to hair diffusers, the rule of the lower the better is very important. Instead of going on the full and top settings, choose the lower options. This way you can better control and localize airflow. When your hair moves less, it’s less likely to have frizzes, and this is exactly our goal.

Wrap Up

When I look back at the days where I was struggling so much to get my curls under control, I want to laugh. Sure, taking care of this type of hair is more demanding, but once you know what you are doing, you can quickly get a perfect hairstyle. Especially, when you can reach for such amazing tools as hair diffusers.

After all, natural curls which are full of strength, without fizz, and with an impressive volume can add a spark to anyone. Highlight your natural beauty with simple methods. Whether you are a boy or girl, you should try the method I mentioned above and let me know how it works for you.


Hi I'm Hati and my hair is naturally very curly, obviously! I have started this blog to share curly hair stories and what I use to manage my own hair. Hopefully you will find it useful! My other main passions are food, art and animlas. I have a little cat who I love very much.

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