|Can my relaxed hair be healthy?
While there are many women who have chosen to wear their in its naturally curly state, there are lots of others out there (myself included) who still prefer to have a relaxer. Yes, it is true that relaxed hair can have damage, but the same can be said for natural hair as well. This leads me to the question that many relaxed women have asked, can my relaxed hair be healthy?
The short answer to this question is yes. I have had healthy relaxed hair for as long as I can remember. As a matter of fact, I get asked on a regular basis if my hair is natural, simply because of how healthy it looks. All of my relaxed clients in my salon have healthy hair as well. A relaxer will only damage your hair when you are not using them correctly or you fail to take care of your hair while you have one.
|Healthy, relaxed hair is not a myth
While it is an absolute fact that your relaxed hair can be healthy, it does largely depend on your hair care routine, and your home maintenance. I am here to teach you how to take care of your relaxed hair and develop a hair care routine that will help you to have a very healthy head of relaxed hair. One of the main reasons for this blog is to teach you how to take care of your own hair in between salon visits because I believe that your at home maintenance is just as important as your salon visits.
Today I want to share with you some things you should and should not do when you have relaxed hair. These are rules that I as a professional hairstylist go by and also encourage my clients to do the same.
- Only get your relaxer touch ups when there is at least two inches of new growth which is around sixteen weeks or more. You want to decrease any chance of overlapping and over-processing which causes severe damage.
- Trim your ends regularly. Trimming your ends does not help your hair grow, but it does help you retain the length you already have because you are not allowing the split part to work its way up the hair shaft which results in you having to cut more.
- Take it easy on the heat. Apply heat once a week or less to avoid damage. Be sure to use a flat iron with an adjustable temperature gauge (like this one).
- Get protein and moisture treatments when needed. A proper balance of moisture and protein is what keeps hair healthy. Too much of either will lead to hair that is off balance.
- Eat a balanced diet. Eating a diet that includes lots of healthy foods, fruit, and vegetables does amazing things for your hair. When your diet is properly balanced, you don't have to work as hard with products to keep your hair healthy.
- Drink your water! Majority of your dry hair and scalp problems can be solved by drinking at least a gallon (128oz) of water DAILY! Do this and your hair as well as your skin will reap the benefits. After all, water is the ultimate hydrator which is why all great quality products list it as the first ingredient on the back of the bottle. This means that the product has more water in it than any other ingredient.
- Use only high quality products. Don't be afraid to invest in good quality products (like these) for your hair. Avoid cheap products that contain sulfates and parabens that are too harsh and often strip the hair. Remember, you get what you pay for! I actually developed my own line of hair products (click here) that are great for relaxed hair. I use it on myself as well as my clients.
- Don't get a touch up before 16 weeks. You need at least two inches of new growth to ensure no overlapping and most people's hair does not need it every 6 weeks. I personally go every 24-26 weeks in between touch ups which is roughly SIX MONTHS. I have thick hair so if I can do it so can you! (Click here for more info on this)
- Don't put your own relaxer in. A professional hairstylist is the most qualified person to put your relaxer in. Only let your trusted stylist handle all of your chemical services. Misuse will lead to damage and thinning of the hair. (I go more in depth on this here)
- Don't over manipulate your hair. Having a relaxer does make your hair slightly weaker so avoid being aggressive with it to avoid any unnecessary breakage. See 10 other reasons that can cause damage to your relaxed hair here.
- Don't comb your hair aggressively while wet. The hair is most fragile when wet so handle with care! You definitely don't want to use a brush while wet unless it is a wet brush which is specifically designed to detangle wet hair and always start from the ends and work your way up when detangling.
- Don't use grease! Ohhh the dreaded "g" word. I know that some people swear by grease but I personally don't like it because it makes the hair so heavy. Also, your hair naturally makes its own oils so too much causes product build up. (See more on this here) In order to have hair that flows you have to keep the extra products to a minimum.
Following these rules can help you have healthy relaxed hair. Once you develop your routine, you will well on your way to having the healthiest relaxed hair that you have ever had.
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