Help! Can I Silk Press My Fine Curls Without Damaging Them?

Absolutely! But we totally understand how the thought of silk pressing fine curls and being left with heat damage can be extremely scary, especially since fine hair textures are more fragile and susceptible to damage than medium and coarse textures. 

The trick to silk pressing fine curls without experiencing damage is using a product that provides superior thermal protection to fine textures like our Design Essentials Natural Agave & Lavender Weightless Thermal Protectant Serum. So, keep reading to learn more about the characteristics of fine hair and how to silk press fine curls without compromising your hairs’ integrity.

The Characteristics of Fine Hair

  • Fine hair is small in diameter and only contains two of the three structures that make up the hair shaft; the outer cuticle layer and the middle cortex layer. Fine hair generally lacks the medulla, the innermost layer that is found in medium and coarse textures.
  • It’s easier to process, very fragile, and prone to breakage.
  • Lacks volume and is resistant to holding styles.
  • Contains less protein than other textures.
  • Easily weighed down with heavy products, causing the hair to look oily or stringy. 
  • Fine hair is often confused with thin hair, but thin hair describes how many hairs there are on a person’s head (also known as hair density). And just because hair is fine, that doesn’t mean it’s thin. For example, you can have fine hair, but thick density. 

Now, let’s get into how to properly prep and protect fine curls before silk pressing.

Step 1: Start With A Clean Canvas 

Beginning with clean hair is the best way to avoid heat damage during thermal styling. So, before you even consider silk pressing fine curls, you must clarify and cleanse your strands (at least twice) with a gentle sulfate-free moisturizing shampoo to rid your hair of all dirt, oil, and impurities while simultaneously restoring moisture balance. We suggest getting the job done with Design Essentials Natural Agave & Lavender Sulfate-Free Moisturizing Hair Bath.

Step 2: Infuse Moisture Into the Hair Shaft With Steam

When silk pressing fine curls, properly moisturized hair is another necessity to preventing heat damage, swelling at the roots, and reversion. Therefore, it’s imperative to deeply penetrate the hair shaft with a moisturizing conditioning treatment that will strengthen, soften, seal, and smooth the hair cuticle like our Design Essentials Natural Agave & Lavender Moisturizing and Detangling Conditioner.

DE MOISTURIZING PRO TIPFor maximum penetration, comb conditioner from roots to ends then steam treat your fine curls under a hair steamer for up to 15 minutes. The moist heat from the steamer will lift the hair cuticle and draw moisture into the hair shaft for better hydration and increased conditioner penetration. 

Step 3: Prime & Protect Before Blow-Drying

Now that your fine curls have been properly cleansed and moisturized, it’s time to protect your strands prior to blow-drying using Design Essentials Natural Agave & Lavender Blow-Dry & Style Primer to smooth away signs of damage, mend split ends, and minimize breakage.



Shake product to activate ingredients then distribute evenly throughout damp hair. Do not overuse product as it contains oils and can weigh down fine hair.

For maximum smoothness, blow-dry using a concentrator attachment on the lowest heat setting and hold the blow-dyer 4 to 6 inches away from the hair to avoid depleting all the moisture we just infused into your fine curls with steps 1 and 2.

DE PRO TIP: If you have easy-to-detangle curls or very fine hair you may opt to not use the Agave & Lavender Blow-Dry & Styling Primer. Instead proceed to the next step.

Step 4: Always Use A Thermal Heat Protectant When Silk Pressing Fine Curls

Because we already know that fine hair is prone to breakage, you MUST ALWAYS use a thermal heat protectant when silk pressing fine curls. Our consumers love Design Essentials Natural Agave & Lavender Weightless Thermal Protectant Serum because it provides a lightweight silky-smooth finish that seals in moisture and protects your natural curl pattern from thermal damage; all while leaving you with a long-lasting silk press full of body and high-gloss shine.


Place a few small drops into palms and emulsify. Massage through the scalp, then rub palms down the mid-shaft to the ends of the hair to ensure proper protection throughout your entire head. Do not overuse this product or else you risk weighing down your fine hair. Proceed to flat-iron 1-inch sections at 400 degrees (maximum to avoid heat damage). Use a fine-tooth comb to guide strands through the thermal tool and only pass the flat-iron through each section once.

Once finished, say hello to your new beautiful silk press and get the most out of your thermal style with these 5 Maintenance Tips On How To Make Your Silk Press Last

Don’t forget to tag us on Instagram with your silk press results! Tag @designessentials and use the hashtag #designessentials so Team DE can see your tresses!

Shop the new Design Essentials Natural Agave & Lavender Collection and other recommended products online at and at your local Sally Beauty!

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