Have you ever burned yourself while using a curling iron?
Of course, you have! Every woman walks around with battle wounds that she received while wielding her curling iron around. Doesn’t she?
I’ve lost count of how many times this has happened to me and you’ve probably got a similar story too.
The fact of the matter is that despite our best efforts―we can’t stop the hot styling tool from slipping. From burning our fingers to smacking the tool into our forehead―these accidents happen all the time. It’s kind of inevitable when you think about it. After all, we are literally using a super hot metal wand to curl our hair!
Fortunately, in most cases, the burn is pretty mild and it fades away within a few weeks. However, you never know when a slip of your hands can lead to a scorching burn. One that potentially leaves some unsightly marks behind!
No pain, no gain, right?
Some people might say that we tend to go too far with our styling sessions sometimes. Without the assistance of your trusty curling iron, you’ll miss out on those bouncy beach waves and subtle soft curls. That’s why I figured that we need another strategy to counter the burns.
Admittedly, unless you’re a beginner, approximately 9/10 of your curling sessions don’t end up with a burn. So all you’ve got to do is deal with the aftermath of the other one.
So how do you treat a curling iron burn? First, use a cold compress pack to cool it down. Then tend the targeted area with some anti-inflammation cream/gel. Wrap it with a bandage and then wait for it to heal. Remember to apply medication and avoid agitating the burn while it heals.
That’s it! If you follow my guidance properly then you’re most likely to end up with a perfectly healed skin once the bandage comes off.
So let’s get down to the teeny tiny details that can prevent curling iron burns from scarring.
The Guide: How to Treat a Curling Iron Burn?
What’s the best way to ensure that you don’t get scarred after the burn?
The best strategy to evade any permanent marks on your skin is to react quickly. The saving grace of this situation is that most burns happen in easy-to-reach places e.g. fingers, forehead, face and neck. So you don’t need extra assistance to treat the curling iron burns. Plus, all these areas can be treated in a similar manner.
Nevertheless, it’s essential that you have proper knowledge of how to treat the burn. Otherwise, you end up making irreversible mistakes. That’s why I have created a step-by-step guide to ensure that you know what to do when the hot iron comes in contact with your skin.
Let’s have a look:
Step 1: Keep It Cool
First of all, unplug the curling iron as soon as you get hurt or tell someone else to switch it off. This precautionary measure helps prevent further damage done by the hot styling tool.
Then rush off to the nearest water source. Use a damp cloth to cool your burned area (e.g. hands, face or neck). This should be done for at least 15-20 minutes. After this, you need a cold compress pack to keep your burn cool. You might use a damp washcloth if you find neither of these things.
Why is this important? It helps bring down the temperature of the burned skin. It also prevents the heat from going any deeper.
Pro tip: If you’ve burned your hands or fingers then avoid placing it directly under water. The high water pressure can aggravate the skin and result in blisters.
Step 2: First Aid Kit
Your burned skin can easily get infected. That’s why it’s essential that you apply an antibacterial cream on the affected area after cooling it. Most dermatologists recommend Neosporin for self-medicated burns. You need to apply it gently over the burned skin and then cover it with a bandage after that.
Why is it important? Firstly, the antibacterial qualities of this medicine help to sterilize the burned area by killing off the germs infecting it. The other benefits include providing hydration and pain relief.
Step 3: Soothe and Pacify
Burns need some time to heal and recover from the trauma. That’s why you need to apply some ointment to soothe the inflamed region. You should also make sure to moisturize the area to prevent it from drying out.
In addition to that, try medicating the skin by rubbing antiseptic/anti-inflammatory ointments. Their healing power helps sooth your agitated skin. This is seen as an effective way to prevent the skin from getting infected or forming blisters.
That’s kind of it. The next thing you need to do is cover the burn with a bandage.
However, before you learn how to cover your burn’s I’d like to point out a few tips and tricks for a steady recovery.
Best Tips to Treat the Curling Iron Burn
Here are a few effective tips that promote the healing process:
- You should use essential oils like eucalyptus, lavender, and chamomile to soothe your inflammation and prevent blisters.
- Home remedies like applying a thin layer of honey or aloe vera sap on fresh burns keep it soft and supple.
- Avoid touching or putting too much pressure on the burned area. This might cause the burn to escalate.
- Try not to pick on your scabs or blisters as it might leave permanent scars.
- Vaseline and cocoa butter can help scars and marks fade away faster. These should be applied after a day or two.
- You should take ibuprofen to alleviate the pain.
How to Cover a Curling Iron Burn?
Once the affected area is clean and you’ve applied the antiseptic, it’s time to cover it with a bandage. You should do this by gently wrapping the burn with a sterile gauze pad or medical tape. If the burn area is small then a normal band-aid will do the trick.
However, you must make sure that:
- The bandage doesn’t have any fibers (e.g. fluffy cotton). That’s because the fibers stick to the skin and hinder the healing process.
- You haven’t put too much pressure on it as it constricts the blood flow.
- You clean and change the dressing each day to prevent bacterial infection.
What should you do after removing the bandage? Burned skin is quite sensitive. So you should try to shield it from the sun after you’ve taken off the bandage. This can be done by using waterproof sunscreen whenever you head out.
Why Did My Curling Iron Burn Turn Brown?
It’s because the redness has subsided and your burned skin is starting to heal. You might have noticed that red burn turning brown after a few days of the accident. There is nothing to worry about this because the brown layer is what we call a scab.
Scabs help protect our sensitive skin below its surface while it heals. It comes off naturally when new skin has formed below. So it’s important for you to not peel it off or pick on it as that might prevent your skin from healing properly.
However, if your burn turned brown immediately after you came into contact with the curling wand―then you’ve got a reason to be alarmed. That’s because first degree burns are supposed to be red and splotchy. The darker the shade of the burn the more severe the situation will be. So it’s better to head to the ER before the situation escalates.
What If It Turned Purple?
If the burn has turned purple then you probably developed a hypertrophic scar. These scars may look gruesome but they aren’t an issue either. It simply means that you’ve not covered the burned wound properly. That’s because they are usually formed when burned skin comes in contact with UV rays on a daily basis.
Other causes include:
- Overproduction of collagen due to infection
- Imbalanced healing process
- Indication of agitated skin
- Lack of oxygen to the skin
Pro tip: If the problem persists then you should consult a skin specialist.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can We Hide the Burn with Makeup?
No. Fresh burns and those that are healing must not get exposed to makeup. That’s because many cosmetic products contain chemicals that will cause irritation and itchiness. This increases the risk of infections.
When Should You Go to the Doctor For A Curling Iron Burn?
Curling iron burns are usually mild and can be safely self-medicated. Nevertheless, it’s important for you to examine the wound after a 24-hour timeframe. This is the best way to make sure that the burn is healing well.
You should visit the doctor if you notice:
- Charred skin
- Abnormal swelling and redness
- Blisters with puss
How Can You Avoid the Curling Iron Burn?
Practice, practice and some more practice. That’s the best way to avoid getting scorched by your curling wand.
Other safe tactics include:
- Wearing protective heat-proof gloves while you use the hairstyling tool.
- Select a curling iron that has a no-slip grip.
- Don’t use low-quality curling irons because they are prone to getting ‘too hot to handle’.
- Try not to bring your curling iron too close to your face/neck
- Take things slow and steady to prevent accidents
In short, be safe, alert and never rush!
Long story short, if you’re using a hot styling tool―you must prepare yourself for the burns. The key is to cool it down, clean it up, soothe and cover it. As long as you follow these steps, your burns won’t leave any traces behind.
Let us know your curling iron burn tips in the comments.