Is Polyester Good For Hair? A Detailed Look

Polyester is one of the most common synthetic fibers used in clothing and accessories today. With its low cost and versatility, polyester can be found in all kinds of hair accessories from scrunchies to headbands. But is this synthetic material actually good to use on your hair?

Keep reading as we take an in-depth look at the pros and cons of polyester for hair.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer: Polyester hair accessories like scrunchies can provide certain benefits like holding styles and adding volume. However, polyester is not breathable, can encourage static, and lacks moisture-wicking abilities compared to natural fibers.

Polyester is best used sparingly or avoided for those with very fine or damaged hair.

The Pros of Polyester for Hair

It’s cheap and widely accessible

Polyester is a synthetic material that is known for its affordability and availability. Unlike other hair accessories or fabrics, polyester is often much cheaper to purchase, making it a popular choice for those on a budget.

It is also widely accessible, with polyester hair accessories available at most drugstores, beauty supply stores, and online retailers.

Furthermore, many people appreciate the variety of colors and designs that polyester hair accessories offer. Whether you’re looking for a simple black headband or a vibrant patterned scrunchie, you’re likely to find what you need in polyester.

Holds styles well

Polyester is known for its ability to hold hairstyles in place. Whether you’re creating an updo, a sleek ponytail, or a bouncy curl, polyester hair accessories can help keep your hair in its desired style throughout the day.

The material’s grip and elasticity ensure that your hair stays in place, even during physical activities or windy conditions.

This durability makes polyester a great option for individuals who struggle with fine or slippery hair that tends to lose its shape easily. With polyester hair accessories, you can confidently rock your favorite hairstyle without worrying about it falling apart halfway through the day.

Adds volume

One of the benefits of using polyester hair accessories, such as scrunchies or headbands, is that they can add volume to your hair. The material’s texture and thickness can create the appearance of fuller, more voluminous hair when worn in certain styles.

For example, a polyester scrunchie can be used to create a high ponytail that appears fuller and more voluminous than a regular hair tie. Similarly, a polyester headband can be positioned at the crown of the head to lift the hair and create a voluminous look.

Easy to clean

Another advantage of polyester hair accessories is that they are easy to clean. Unlike delicate fabrics or materials that require special care, polyester can withstand regular washing and handling without losing its shape or color.

Most polyester hair accessories can be safely washed by hand or machine, making them convenient and low-maintenance. This ease of cleaning ensures that your hair accessories stay fresh and hygienic, contributing to the overall health of your hair.

The Cons of Polyester for Hair

Not breathable

Polyester is a synthetic fabric that is known for its lack of breathability. When it comes to hair, this can be a disadvantage. Our hair needs oxygen and moisture to stay healthy and vibrant. Unfortunately, polyester can trap heat and moisture, leading to a hot and humid environment around the hair.

This can result in discomfort and may even contribute to scalp issues such as dandruff or itchiness.

Can cause static

Another downside of polyester for hair is its tendency to create static. Static electricity occurs when two objects rub against each other, causing a transfer of electrons. Polyester, being a synthetic material, is more prone to creating static compared to natural fibers like cotton or silk.

When hair comes into contact with polyester, it can lead to flyaways, frizz, and an overall unruly appearance.

Dries out hair

Polyester has a tendency to strip moisture from the hair, leaving it dry and brittle. This is especially true for individuals with already dry or damaged hair. The lack of moisture retention can lead to breakage, split ends, and overall lackluster hair.

It is important to note that maintaining proper hair hydration is crucial for its health and appearance.

Can snag and pull hair

Due to its smooth and slippery texture, polyester fabric can easily snag and pull hair. This can be particularly problematic for individuals with long or curly hair, as the strands can get caught in the fabric, leading to breakage or damage.

It is advisable to avoid wearing polyester hair accessories or using polyester pillowcases to minimize the risk of hair entanglement.

When considering the impact of polyester on hair health, it is important to recognize that individual experiences may vary. While some people may not experience any negative effects from polyester, others may find it detrimental to their hair.

It is always a good idea to listen to your hair’s needs and choose fabrics that promote its health and vitality.

Who Should Use Polyester Hair Accessories

Those with thick, textured hair

If you have thick, textured hair, you know how challenging it can be to find hair accessories that can hold your locks in place. Polyester hair accessories can be a great option for you. Polyester is known for its durability and strength, making it suitable for holding even the thickest of hair.

Whether you want to secure a high ponytail or create an intricate updo, polyester hair accessories can provide the necessary hold and support.

People who style their hair frequently

For those who love to experiment with different hairstyles, polyester hair accessories can be a game-changer. Polyester is a versatile material that can withstand heat styling tools like curling irons and straighteners.

It is also resistant to moisture, which means that your hair accessories won’t lose their shape or effectiveness even if you use them after applying hair products. So, if you enjoy styling your hair frequently, polyester hair accessories can be a reliable choice that will last through multiple styling sessions.

If you have damaged or very fine hair, avoid polyester

While polyester hair accessories have their advantages, they may not be suitable for everyone. If you have damaged or very fine hair, it is best to avoid polyester hair accessories. Polyester can be slightly rougher compared to other materials like satin or silk, which can lead to friction and breakage, especially if your hair is already fragile.

Instead, opt for softer materials that are more gentle on your hair, such as satin scrunchies or silk headbands. These materials can help prevent further damage and keep your hair healthy and protected.

It’s important to consider your hair type and condition when choosing hair accessories. While polyester can be a great option for some, it may not be the best choice for others. Ultimately, finding the right hair accessories that suit your needs and preferences will ensure that you can style your hair with ease and confidence.

Tips for Using Polyester Hair Accessories

Use sparingly

While polyester hair accessories can add a pop of color and style to your hair, it’s important to use them sparingly. Polyester is not as gentle on the hair as other materials like silk or satin. The friction caused by polyester can lead to breakage and damage.

Consider using polyester hair accessories for special occasions or events, rather than on a daily basis.

Give hair breaks from polyester

It’s important to give your hair breaks from polyester hair accessories to allow it to breathe and recover. Constant use of polyester accessories can cause hair to become dry and brittle. Try alternating between polyester and other materials like silk or cotton to give your hair a break from the potential damage caused by polyester.

Spritz with hair spray or serum for slip

If you do choose to use polyester hair accessories, there are ways to minimize the friction and potential damage. Spritzing your hair with a light hair spray or serum can help create slip, reducing the friction between the accessory and your hair.

This can help prevent breakage and damage caused by the rough surface of polyester.

Avoid tightly pulling back hair

One common mistake when using polyester hair accessories is pulling the hair back tightly. This can put unnecessary stress on the hair, leading to breakage and damage. Instead, opt for looser styles that allow for some movement.

This will minimize the friction and potential damage caused by the polyester accessory.

Remember, while polyester hair accessories can be a fun and stylish addition to your look, it’s important to use them with caution. By following these tips and being mindful of how often and tightly you use them, you can minimize the potential damage to your hair.

Natural Fiber Alternatives to Polyester

Silk – smooth, gentle, insulating

Silk is a luxurious natural fiber that has been used for centuries. It is known for its smooth and gentle texture, making it a great alternative to polyester for those with sensitive hair. Silk is also naturally insulating, helping to regulate temperature and prevent frizz.

Additionally, silk is hypoallergenic and does not absorb moisture like polyester, which can lead to dryness and breakage. To learn more about the benefits of silk for hair, check out Hair Romance.

Cotton – breathable, moisture-wicking

Cotton is a popular choice for clothing and bedding, and it can also be a great alternative to polyester for hair. Cotton is highly breathable, allowing air to circulate around the scalp and reducing the risk of sweat buildup.

It is also moisture-wicking, meaning that it absorbs and evaporates moisture quickly, keeping the hair dry and preventing damage. However, it’s important to note that cotton can be more abrasive than silk, so it’s recommended to use a silk or satin pillowcase if you choose to sleep on cotton sheets.

For more information on using cotton for hair, visit Healthline.

Wood – durable, eco-friendly

Wood is not commonly used as a fabric alternative to polyester, but it can offer some unique benefits for hair. Wooden hairbrushes and combs, for example, are known for their durability and gentle detangling properties.

The smooth wooden bristles help to distribute natural oils from the scalp to the hair, promoting shine and reducing frizz. Additionally, using wooden hair accessories can be a more environmentally friendly option compared to synthetic materials like polyester.

To explore different wooden hairbrush options, visit Byrdie.

Leather – luxurious, gently texturizing

Leather may not be the first material that comes to mind when thinking about alternatives to polyester, but it can be used for hair accessories like headbands and hair ties. Leather accessories can add a touch of luxury to your hairstyle, and the gentle texture of leather can help to hold the hair in place without causing damage or breakage.

It’s important to choose high-quality leather that is soft and smooth to ensure the best results for your hair. To discover stylish leather hair accessories, visit Marie Claire.


While polyester hair accessories can be convenient and budget-friendly, this synthetic material does have some notable drawbacks when used on hair frequently. Those with very fine or damaged hair may want to steer clear of polyester.

For the healthiest hair, aim to use polyester accessories sparingly and give your hair ample breaks with gentler, natural fiber options like silk and cotton.

Similar Posts