False relaxer practices have been sending a lot of chemically relaxed sista's running for the curly hills. Although Natural hair is beautiful and has loads of versatility, when done right relaxers can be very beautiful as well. People relax their hair for several reasons but greater manageability of curls is usually the case. Before we reach for the creamy magic wand, there are a few keys to keep in mind when choosing if and what type of relaxer you should get.
*Let me preface this by saying I believe only a professional should be applying chemical services to your hair. This ensures a correct application and prevention of hair loss *
Before you even start to look at a relaxer you must first determine if your hair can handle a chemical relaxer. Not all hair textures are created equal. If you already have damaged natural hair you must either do conditioning treatments to bring the hair to a more healthy state or skip the relaxer all together. (Yes I'm talking to you super dry hair and split end ladies)
This looks like an improperly rinsed or neutralized Relaxer right here ------->
Now let's talk relaxers! I've had many potential clients ask why they shouldn't do their own relaxers. Ummmmm because you were never trained too.....ok ok .....One reason is it's impossible for you to see the new growth while working on your own head. Overlapping product on previously relaxed hair will cause breakage. The second reason?Relaxers are a harsh chemical product and should be handled by a professional. A professional knows which relaxers to apply and how to use and rinse them. Got it?
Box vs No box
The Box: Relaxers that are sold as kits are almost always a calcium relaxer (No Lye) or combination of or derivative. There are a few others and combinations but today I'm focusing on the Calcium/guanidine relaxer kits.
1. These relaxer have the ability to "lock" the cuticle in place making it very difficult to get adequate moisture to the hair. Unevenly process' hair and swells (looks frizzy over time)
2. The calcium in the product builds onto the hair shaft eventually making it look dull and lifeless. (Ever notice how great your looks when you FIRST get a box relaxer and later it's dull, brittle and split?)
3. Not as strong as a Sodium Hydroxide relaxer and the processing time is slightly longer.
No Box: Usually Sodium Hydroxide relaxers (Lye) This is a very dangerous product if handle by a non professional.
1. Faster processing time
2. Allows the hair to be easily, evenly relaxed and conditioned in the same process. Notice how I said relaxed and not BONE Straight. Over straightening will produce damaged hair.
I know what you are thinking. Sodium Hydroxide relaxer are a harsh chemical that breaks and damages the hair..... blah blah blah That only applies to the non professional or professional who doesn't follow or respect the rules.
And here's another tidbit EVERYTHING you do to your hair is damaging. The difference is do you know what to do keep the hair that you have on your head.
For more information on this discussion please visit the Bombshell Artistry Fan page and ask away. I'm here to help!