Today’s guest post on healthy relaxed hair is by Jill Akanshumbusha. Find other hair-related posts by Jill here.
Relaxing your hair for the first time can bring on mixed emotions.
On one hand, you might be excited about your soon-to-be new look.
On the other, you might worry about just what you’ll need to do to keep your newly relaxed hair healthy and looking great.
The good news is that relaxed hair is not as complicated to take care of as you might think.
You just have to make sure you follow the right steps.
The process of relaxing hair has been around for over a century—the first documented relaxer cream having been discovered in 1909—and has been widely embraced by many.
Maintaining relaxed hair requires a bit of time and effort but, when done right, you’ll get incredible results that will make you the envy of all.
Here are 7 tips that will help you on your journey to flawless relaxed hair. (Biche’s note: Jill has amazingly long healthy relaxed hair, so I advise you to listen closely to what she’s about to say! :-))
1. Leave It to the Pros
When relaxing your hair for the first time, I’d recommend that you visit a hair salon.
Because, among other things, you can’t see all the different sections of your head, and yet it’s important that your hair be equally and uniformly relaxed.
Make sure the person relaxing your hair is a professional so as to avoid hair damage as much as possible.
2. Retouch Your Hair Every 8-16 Weeks
Don’t relax your hair too often. This might damage both your hair and scalp.
Not allowing enough time between retouches will weaken your hair and can lead to breakage.
Instead, retouch your hair every 8-16 weeks so that you have enough virgin hair growth on which to apply relaxer cream, without having to process already relaxed hair further.
3. Use Hair Masks on Your Relaxed Hair
Hair masks are deep conditioning treatments that are applied to the hair and left in for a while so as to impart shine, help with manageability, and nourish the hair cuticle.
Hair masks can be store-bought or homemade.
It’s a good idea to use hair masks regularly in order to prevent damage and reduce hair breakage that may result from everyday styling.
Hair masks aren’t all one-size-fits-all, though. Different types of hair masks fulfill different hair needs.
DIY Hair Masks for Relaxed Hair
Here are a few hair mask recipes for you to try at home.
Conditioning Hair Mask Recipe for Healthy Relaxed Hair
- Mix 2 tablespoons of virgin coconut oil with one cup of warm water.
- Massage this mixture into your hair and scalp.
- Cover your hair with a plastic cap and leave it in for at least 2 hours.
- Shampoo and condition your hair as usual.
Protein Mask Recipe
Protein masks are a great way to help your hair regain lost protein.
A protein treatment will strengthen your hair and make it less prone to damage.
To make one at home:
- Mix 2 eggs, 2 cups of full fat yogurt and 1/4 cup of olive oil.
- Apply this mixture to your hair in sections.
- Leave in for 20-30 minutes.
- Shampoo and condition your hair as normal.
4. Protect Your Relaxed Hair
Hair whose texture has been altered is weaker than hair in its natural state and therefore needs added protection.
During the day, protect your hair from the sun which can dry out your hair and make it more prone to breakage.
You should also reduce the amount of heat from sources such as hair dryers because heat weakens your hair and is not good for your scalp.
Don’t forget to use a hair net when you go to bed to protect your hair from rubbing against your pillow case.
Not doing this can result not only in split ends and breakage due to friction but also general moisture loss.
5. Trim Your Relaxed Hair Regularly
One of the best things you can do to achieve healthy relaxed hair is to trim your hair regularly.
Over time, the ends of your hair can become dry and split. In other words, you’ll get split ends.
Regular trims will help prevent these splits from traveling further up your hair shaft, which would cause more damage and weaken your hair further.
Aesthetically speaking, trimming off split ends makes your hair look smoother and healthier.
6. Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle
We are what we put into our bodies, so it’s no wonder that a healthy lifestyle will help you achieve your goal of healthy relaxed hair.
A healthy body and healthy relaxed hair go hand in hand, so take good care of your body if you want good hair results.
7. Choose You Hair Products Carefully
Choose gentle products that will not be unnecessarily harsh on your already chemically-treated hair but will instead help to retain moisture.
Some good products include (click each product to find out more about it):