Does a Handheld Hair Steamer Really Work? (Pros & Cons)

lady with healthy curly hair so does a handheld hair steamer really work?

Does a handheld hair steamer really work?

Hair steaming is a natural hair care method recommended for all hair types since it has many benefits, not only for the hair shaft but also for people with scalp issues.

While it is recommended that hair steaming be done by professional hair steamers, you have to admit that doing this regularly may prove quite costly.

Would it be wise to invest in a handheld hair steamer instead? Read more to find out!

Handheld steamers: Benefits

1. Portability

For obvious reasons, one major advantage of a handheld hair steamer is its size. 

A handheld hair steamer can be stored easily whenever it isn’t needed. For people with smaller homes or living space, this is definitely one feature that they will look out for.

For people who are constantly on the go or traveling, a handheld hair steamer with autovolt features and power adaptors will definitely be something you will want to add as a deep conditioning tool to your home.

2. Focused areas of coverage


Heres how i refresh my curls using my hair steamer from @Q-REDEW HANDHELD STEAMER hairtips curlyhairhacks

♬ Sleigh Bells (PhatCap! Trap Remix) – Ronettes

Hooded hair steamers steam your head in their entirety. 

There are, however, instances when you may want to concentrate on a particular section of your scalp that steam from hooded steamers can’t easily reach. Examples are hair around the nape or even near the ears.

This is where handheld steamers have an advantage. This is especially true for individuals with low-porosity hair or even thick hair where steam won’t easily penetrate.

3. More affordable

You cannot discount affordability when talking about the pros of any gadgets or hair treatments. This includes hair steamers.

Handheld hair steamers top the list for keeping things within the budget. They’re pretty affordable and they won’t break the bank while keeping you up-to-date with your hair care regimen.

Check out more benefits of steaming your hair in this video:


Hair steaming with Q-Redew Hand Held Steamer. #naturalhairlove #haircaretipsandtricks #hairsteamer #qredew

♬ original sound – cocojones

Handheld steamers: Drawbacks 

1. More time-consuming

Unlike a traditional hair steamer found in salons or a facial steamer, steaming using a handheld steamer should be done by sections.

With an actual hair steamer, the process covers the entire head at the same time. You no longer need to divide hair into sections.

For those with thick hair, this poses some inconvenience, since limited coverage means that you will have more sections to cover. What would take minutes in a regular steamer will take hours using a handheld one.

2. Can be tiring

With a hooded hair steamer or tabletop hair steamer, you simply have to sit down, press a button and wait for the entire steaming process to finish.

With handheld steamers, you will have to hold the steamer as you steam your hair and apply deep conditioner or a hair mask one section at a time. 

As a caveat, this makes for a wonderful arm workout so you can put this under the list of advantages too!

3. Possible hair damage

The keyword here is heat. Professionals are pretty aware of how much heat your hair strands can tolerate. 

Excessive heat can affect keratin [1] that is meant to protect the hair shaft. It doesn’t matter if the source is from dry heat (straightening irons) or steamers. Heat damage is real.

Steaming within the recommended time of thirty minutes is the best way to make sure that you do not inflict any damage on your hair.

How to use a handheld hair steamer

Using a handheld steamer is as simple as filling up the reservoir with water and pressing the power button to start the steaming process.

Once the steamer heats up, start combing through sections of your hair to allow steam to pass through. 

You can check out this video to get a better visual of how you can make use of your handheld hair steamer.

Handheld steamers: for which hair type

First things first. Do all hair types need regular hair steaming?

In a nutshell, yes. If you don’t want to have dry hair. All hair types do benefit from hair steaming [2]. 

The difference lies in how often you need to steam.

The answer to this depends on hair porosity, and this is what you also have to think about if you are considering a handheld steamer.

It’s easy for porous hair to retain moisture, which is actually why you steam in the first place. 

Since high-porosity hair can easily retain moisture, you can expect that if you have porous hair, you may not take as much time to steam compared to individuals with low-porosity natural hair.

Individuals with porous hair don’t need to steam as often, so steaming with a handheld steamer won’t be as inconvenient compared to those who have low-porosity hair.

Then again, if you have time to spare and are willing to work within the limits, you can still benefit from the use of a handheld steamer, regardless of hair type, especially if you need portable options.

Watch this quick video review of a handheld steamer.


Hand held natural hair steamer #naturalhair #beauty #hair #GossipGirlHere #wedonotcare

♬ original sound – Beauty Tea


Can I Use A Clothes Steamer In My Hair?

No. It all goes back to heat. Clothes steamers produce intense heat, much more than hair steamers do. You would end up with damaged hair.

How Long Does It Take To Steam One’s Hair?

It depends on hair texture and porosity. Individuals with porous hair take a shorter time—15 to 20 minutes. People with curls and low-porosity hair take longer, but only 30 minutes.

What Are The Benefits Of Hair Steaming?

Think of using a hair steamer as a deep conditioning treatment. It uses moist heat. This increases the absorption of conditioners and hair oil, so it works well in maintaining your hair’s moisture.

Can A Hair Straightener With Steam Be Used For Hair Steaming?

lady using a flat iron: tourmaline flat iron vs ceramic flat iron

A hair straightener with steam has a different purpose than a hair steamer. It straightens hair while making sure that moisture is maintained during the process. 
Steamers have the main purpose of maintaining your hair’s moisture.


So, do handheld hair steamers really work? Indeed, they do!

They work on the hair strand, just like traditional steamers in hair salons and they should be part of hair care in order for you to maintain healthy hair.

Like any other gadget though, it will have its advantages and disadvantages, but these will all depend on your needs and situation.

That said, a handheld hair steamer is an amazing styling tool that can give you maximum benefits for you to have moisturized hair that is simply gorgeous.


  • 1. University H. Scientists shine new light on heat-damaged hair [Internet]. Available from:
  • 2. This is what steaming does to your hair, according to an expert [Internet]. Healthshots. 2021. Available from:
lady brushing her shiny curly hair

Does a handheld hair steamer really work? Let us know your opinion below!