When relaxing your hair make sure you know what you are getting yourself into: hair breakage, hair thinning, lack of hair growth, scalp irritation, scalp damage, hair loss are all some of the things that you may go through after harming your beautiful natural hair. I recommend that if you do decide to relax your hair that you go to a professional first. The damage can be great or even permanent if you do not know what you are doing.
How “relaxed” is your hair?
“The chemical penetrates the cortex or cortical layer and loosens the natural curl pattern.”
“This inner layer of the hair shaft is not only what gives curly hair its shape but provides strength and elasticity. Once this process is performed it is irreversible.”
This may not seem to be a lot but once you have done this to your hair you have allowed your hair to become prone to breakage. Relaxing your hair can be addicting and each month in order to keep up with the “straight hair” look you have to get touch ups.
Leaving your hair without a touch up and allowing it to grow out leaves your hair looking extremely unhealthy. You have your new growth and then you see where you had your hair relaxed. By touching it up you are only further damaging your hair.
“Sodium Hydroxide is the strongest type of principal chemical used in some chemical relaxers because it provides the most long lasting and dramatic effects. However, this same sodium hydroxide is found in drain cleaners which well demonstrates the strength of this chemical. It is what is used in products that are referred to as “lye” relaxers. The strength varies from a ph factor of 10 to 14. With higher ph, the faster the straightening solution will take hold, but the more potential the damage. Guanidine Hydroxide is the other common option of relaxer chemical used today. This is what is referred to as “no-lye” relaxers.”
“This label can be misleading to some consumers. It does not imply that there aren’t any strong chemicals used or that the chemicals used are somehow less potentially damaging.”