A hair relaxer is a cream-like treatment used to chemically straighten (“relax”) curls and afro hair.
The raw materials used when relaxing your hair work by penetrating deep into the hair shaft, reaching the cortex. They attack naturally strong disulfide bonds that connect keratin molecules together.
For the best results, it’s recommended to wash and deep condition hair once a week, apply a protein treatment once a month, and use a hair relaxer every 1,5 – 2,5 months.
Relaxing your hair too often could increase scalp sensitivity which may lead to severe irritation and even hair loss, so following the instructions closely is an absolute condition.
How To Care for Relaxed Hair
Like other chemical treated hair, relaxed hair needs TLC, lots of moisture, and careful handling.
- Use a Sulphate-free shampoo to gently cleanse your hair and scalp without stripping it of moisture.
- Moisturise your hair to combat dryness and maximize hydration.
- Give your hair some extra with a pre-poo or hot oil treatment using natural oils.
- Limit heat damage by avoiding heated styling tools. To quickly dry your hair, use a microfibre towel instead of a dryer.
- Trim the ends of your relaxed hair to prevent spilled ends.
It’s also possible to reach a similar effect without you relaxing your hair. Below are some of the best curly/afro hair care alternatives.
Straightening your hair
Instead of using a hair relaxer to style your hair, by straightening your hair, you can style it from being curly to straight. Use an oil-based shampoo, then use hair oil and distribute it with a comb. Finally, use a flat iron to straighten your hair.
Keratin treatment also works well with curly and frizzy hair, letting your hair smooth for up to three months. It can also save you a lot of time when you need to style your hair quickly. IKeratin treatment should only be done under the supervision of a qualified stylist.
Silicone creams have a heavy consistency, and they are most suitable for use on thick hair. These creams should be applied to not wet but partially dry hair, from the root up to the tip. The effect of straight hair will last until you rewash it.
Vegetable oils have hydrophobic properties, which help them protect your hair. For the best results when you use vegetable oils try mixing ingredients (for example, combine a polar ingredient with a high-spreading one). Before you get yourself vegetable oil, ensure to check its composition.