by Trudy of 4cHairChick

Currently, I’m ballin’ on a tight budget.  Got some big time projects in my future, so every dollar spent is carefully planned.  Though a Huetiful Steamer is in the horizon; I’m currently without a steamer or an upright hair dryer to aid me in my deep conditioning routine. With my 4c curls, skipping deep conditioning is not an option (I need all the moisture I can get), so I had to figure out a solution for heating my hair during deep conditioning sessions since I don’t have an upright hair dryer or steamer.

Though you can definitely deep condition with body heat only, I used to do that, my results were much better when I used additional heat.  Below is my crafty yet classy solution for heating your hair during deep conditioning sessions without a dryer.

The Face Towel Method Heat a face towel in the microwave. (30 – 40 seconds will do.)

Heat Steaming towel

Next, put a shower cap over your hair.

Place the steaming face towel on top of the shower cap.

Seal in the heat from the face towel by placing another shower cap on over the first shower cap.

*Note – Don’t be like me in this picture – put a towel around your neck. I got burned by water drops from the face towel and it was NOT fun. covered Nice

Boom, there it is – improvised heat!  The face towel will stay hot for about ten minutes.  I wrap my head with a bath towel in addition to using the steamy face towel and shower caps.

After 30 minutes, my hair is good to go and deep conditioned. wrapped and ready

Heat is an important part of deep conditioning because heat lifts your hair cuticles.  The lifted cuticles enable the deep conditioning products to penetrate the hair shaft.

How do you deep condition your hair? Dryer, Steamer or another method?

Trudy Susan is the founder of the online platform 4c Hair the #1 online community for type 4 naturals.  In 2011, Trudy chopped off her hair, instantaneously trading her shoulder length chemically relaxed tresses for a teeny-weeny afro.  Motivated by the lack of information available specific to 4c hair Trudy began an online community, which is now 200,000 members strong and growing, that caters to women with type 4 hair.

Leave a Reply

36 Comments on "How To Make Your Own Hair Steamer"

Notify of
Amanda M. Rich

This is a very technical way to make own hair steam. However it’s an almost natural streamer. No experience needed, time saving and all material are available at home. I will definitely try the face towel method while traveling, I like this most. However after seaming hair we need a flat iron to straight our hair, hope this iron may fulfill the requirement-


[…] hair. Even if you don’t want to invest in a hair steamer, there are DIY options, check out: to create your own hair steamer effect with a […]


That sounds like adding heat but not necessarily steaming, unless I’m missing something.


I’m thinking wet heat is different than dry heat, also the towel isn’t directly on the hair.


Trying this now….. Such a great idea! Thanks!


I put the DC in my hair, then get in the shower and take a lonnnngggg shower… I just let the steam from my shower do the work. No extra money spent whatsoever hahaha. my hair always comes out a lot softer and manageable then if I just DC with a shower cap. But I’m not sure if this is effective as a steamer since I’ve never used one…

Chelsea A Chelsea

Lol alot of water wasted though. Money spent on the water bill though


[…] my hooded dryer for the steaming. Here are some posts on how to steam your hair without a steamer: How To Make Your Own Hair Steamer – Black Girl Long Hair  and  How to Steam Your Hair… Without a Steamer – Naturally […]

Love Lee Naps

I’ve wrapped my deep conditioned tresses in Saran Wrap by simply wrapping the roll around my head until I had a good seal around my hair and let it sit using my body heat for 30 min… Works great!


so smart! Can’t wait to try this!!

Paula Wilson

I did the exact same method on my hair last weekend! Glad I’m on the right path to good natural hair practices.


Hot towel steam

Add your favorite deep condition to your hair. Wet two wash cloth and place in the microwave for two minute. Place one wash cloth on your hair and then add a plastic bag and repeat the process again. Sit under the hood dryer for 30 minute.

Deep condition

Your favorite oil


I normally use a blow dryer attachment bonnet I purchased on EBay . I haven’t used it since September- I am going to start doing these DC treatments because it was beneficial to my hair. I may even try the steam treatment because I am finding my newly natural hair is somewhat drier than when i was transitioning. HHGJ 🙂


Be careful when putting plastic in a microwave. Heating it can release BPA, which is a carcinogen.


I use my electric kettle to boil water to heat the towel. Think it works just as well. The steam from the kettle is good for the face too!

Divine Love

I boil a pot of water, place the pot in the sink, wrap my locs with the towel and shower cap to steam my hair and face at the same time.


I just love Trudy..she has such a pure and sweet disposition. A great assest to the natural hair community.


good post


I have one of those silver showercaps and then I wrap a towel around it. as the conditioner is doing its thing, I’m cleaning my house and stuff moving around raises the body temp and the heat that comes from my scalp is trapped under the cap. So that’s how I do it.


I personally did not like the Huetiful. The dome was shallow so I had to change positions often to steam all of my hair. Also, the material appeared cheap for the price. I returned it. The concept was great but the actual steamer was cheap quality and awkward to use. Currently, I’m searching for an adjustable, stand alone version with a deeper dome/hood.

I have a plug in heating cap. After shampooing. I squeeze out the excess water by loosening from the roots with my head bent and then balling my hair and squeezing. I do this several times until my hair is no long dripping. Then I apply ample amount of my deep conditioner and/or oil. I also squeeze my hair to all for the conditioner to sink in and cover all my strands as opposed to combing it through. Then I cover my hair with a shower cap and then place the heating cap on my head and try to keep… Read more »

My favourite way to effectively deep condition my hair for cheap is using a plastic bag and then covering the bag with an old t-shirt. The shirt acts as a hair steamer/heat cap and this works wonderfully 🙂



I make an avacado, banana and olive oil deep conditioner and wrap my head with a warm towel. I keep reheating it and wrapping for about 20 minutes.


Steaming didn’t work for me. I was left with dry, brittle hair. However, I could only think that my high porosity hair’s cuticles were open by the end of the process.


Could it have been your conditioner? I steamed last month with a protein conditioner, and followed up with a styler containing wheat protein. This was the last straw (literally) for my hair, I conditioned my hair into protein overload with the same symptoms you describe above. Have been on a co-wash deep moisturizing regimen since!


Love this:)

I am a student and also on a tight budget lol. As a 4b natural prone to SERIOUS dryness I also cant afford not to dc after washing but also can’t afford a fancy dryer/ steamer. I honestly urge you to invest in a very cheap soft bonnet with a drawstring. It attaches to a blowdryer and gives the same effect as a salon dryer because the heat distribution is even. I use a plastic cap underneath so there is no direct heat but simply the warming of my conditioner. Also works for roller sets, flexi rod sets where you… Read more »

I use an upright hair dryer that I’ve had for years. 30 minutes under the dryer on medium heat and I’m done.


Thanks for sharing this information! This article was right on time as I will be washing tomorrow night and plan to use my good ole’ bonnett dryer and plastic cap for deep conditioning. I have a steamer and really like it- but I think my hair retains more moisture when I sit under the bonnet dryer vs. the steamer. Has anyone else experienced this?


Yes, I believe when I use body heat my hair feels more moisturized vs. the steamer. I would of thought it would be the other way around.


I like this solution. I was thinking about buying one of those microwaveable heat caps for my DCs. My question is, how do you know you’re actually getting it hot enough to be effective?


I have one of those microwave caps and it didn’t work for me- but I’ve read others have success. My hair is thick and the cap just doesn’t stay hot long enough and doesn’t penatrate my strands. What works for me is the offical heating cap that you plug in, bonnet dryer and then the steamer.


I believe you’re talking about the heat therapy wrap?
I just got one and though when you touch it it might not feel too hot at first, but once you wrap it around your head, you’ll DEFINITELY feel the heat.
The heat is supposed to last 20 – 25 mind before it cools off, but I usually just reheat it after that if I wanter a longer DC session.


I won a ‘Hair therapy wrap’ and I enjoy it. I place it in the microwave for 30 seconds, reposition it and heat it again as directed. I then wrap a large towel turban style over it. I find if I heat for the 3rd 30 second cycle, it’s too hot on my ears. I would repurchase.


105Your style is so unique in cooiarpsmn to other folks I’ve read stuff from. I appreciate you for posting when you have the opportunity, Guess I will just book mark this web site.


Thanks for sharing, im going to try this this weekend!