We’re all told to avoid the blow dryer in order to achieve the healthy, hydrated hair that everyone desires. But, for many women, a daily blow dry is non-negotiable; after all, who wants to walk out the door in the morning with hair that’s wet from the shower? Luckily, there are a handful of tips and tricks you can use to blow dry your hair without so much damage.

1. Find a Blow Dryer with Multiple Heat Settings

One of the best ways to reduce hair damage from blow drying actually starts with the blow dryer itself. While you may be tempted (as we all are) to pick up the most affordable blow dryer on the market, invest in a high-quality beauty tool for the sake of your hair.

More specifically, look around for a blow dryer with at least three different heat settings. That way, you can select the lowest possible amount of heat for your hair type and keep damage to a minimum.

2. Use a Hair Protectant or Pre-Treatment Product

Hair damage can be prevented by treating your hair with heat protectant products before you break out the blow dryer. These beauty products, which come in spray, serum, gel, cream, and mousse form, work to lock in your hair’s natural moisture and lessen the damaging effects of heat from the blow dryer.

Here are a few of our favorite heat protectant hair products:

3. Stop Before Your Hair is Completely Dry

If you reach for the blow dryer on a daily or almost daily basis, you should consider leaving a small amount of moisture in your hair to air dry to minimize the damaging effects of the blow dryer. By using the blow dryer to almost entirely dry your hair and leaving the rest to dry on its own, you’ll save your hair from some of the harsh heat. Over time, this tiny adjustment to your hair care regimen will make a huge difference in the look and feel of your hair.

4. Take Advantage of Opportunities to Air Dry

If you have the chance to let your hair dry naturally, don’t pass it up! This may sound too simple, but just allowing your hair to air dry every now and again will truly help reduce damage in the long run.

Consider brushing or combing out your hair prior to washing it; this will make unruly hair look far neater once it air dries. Also, see if washing your hair at night could jive with your routine for a few days out of the week. A nighttime shower will not only spare you a chunk of time in the morning, but also save your hair from a damaging blow dry.

The health of your hair should be a priority, but that doesn’t mean you have to nix the blow dryer altogether. With the clever options listed above, you can maintain flowing, hydrated hair and your regular blowout routine!