Eugene Davis, celebrity hairstylist with over 20 years’ experience in the industry, joins us in this guest post to discuss how to maintain healthy relaxed hair.
Let’s start at the beginning: what is hair relaxer?
A relaxer is a type of lotion or cream created and generally used by people with curly-textured hair. This processing makes the hair softer and less tangled, by chemically relaxing the natural curls. The active agents in these reconstructing products are either strong alkaline, lye (sodium hydroxide) and some use ammonium thioglycolate to break down and alter the hair natural structure.
With this said, how do we keep the scalp healthy after applying hair relaxer?
Despite what we have been told in the past about washing the hair to much will dry it out and cause more damage. The damage will actually be by not keeping a healthy scalp and thus not allowing for strong healthy hair to produce from the root. Therefore washing and conditioning the scalp and hair once a week will produce excellent results.
Key Tips for Maintenance on Chemically treated/relaxed hair:
1. Washing the hair with a gentle Sulphate free cleansing shampoo designed for chemically-treated hair. Look out for shampoos that contain Ammonium Lauryl Sulphate or Sodium Lauryl Sulphate; these tend to be harsher on scalp and hair that has been chemically treated.
2. Deep conditioning with products that have Protein and Moisture is ideal in building up the hair after the weekly scalp and hair cleanse.
3. Keeping the scalp and hair properly nurtured before any heat styling requires a great leave in conditioner and a natural light oil massaged into the scalp and hair. This extra step helps in detangling the hair along with a wide tooth comb as the hair is in its most vulnerable state when wet.
Is co-washing a good idea for healthy relaxed hair?
Some believe that washing the scalp is not necessary and an excellent alternative when having relaxed hair is “Co-washing”(conditioner only washing). The idea behind Co-washing is washing the hair with a lightweight moisturising conditioner. However popular the process, shampoo washes the hair; conditioner does not. Eliminating the shampoo step from a cleansing regime can be very drying to chemically treated and damaged hair.
If keeping your scalp and hair healthy while still chemically processing your hair is your priority here’s a health tip:
Drink plenty of water daily, this will nurture the hair in its development stage before it even comes out the scalp. Get enough rest, eat well, alleviate stress and exercise; these with a healthy cleansing program will produce the healthiest hair possible.
Do you have any more healthy relaxed hair tips?
We are giving away 10 of these foldable NoScrunchie hair bottles to the first 10 people to post any relaxed hair queries they need answered.