Saturday, 23 February 2013


There are two types of relaxers. They are SODIUM HYDROXIDE (lye-based) and GUANIDINE HYDROXIDE (no-lye). Although the no-lye products are thought to be less damaging, both types are harmful to the hair because in order to straighten it, they must first strip it of its natural moisture and then break down the structure of the hair. Hair Damage Sodium hydroxide and guanidine hydroxide both have a very high pH factor, meaning they are highly alkaline products. When applied to the hair, they immediately strip it of all moisture, because any retention of moisture would reduce the effectiveness of the straightener. This is why a deep-conditioning treatment is always applied to the hair after the chemical process. These treatments are designed to drive moisture back into the hair shaft and to coat the hair strand to make it look shiny and appear healthy, or in other words -- to camouflage the damage. But no hair that has undergone a chemical relaxer is healthy. It's been purposely and permanently damaged by the chemicals... and hair can't be damaged and healthy at the same time. Relaxed hair is always dry. This is why we're constantly putting something on it.. oiling our hair and scalp two or three times a week. There are several reasons for this: 1) Start with the moisture-stripping process of the chemical relaxer that I spoke about in the above paragraph; 2) Add the steady regimen of hot-comb touch-ups, curling irons & flat irons (all work with heat which is drying to the hair) and hair sprays and styling/holding gels, (these contain alcohol which is drying to the hair). The natural oils our scalps produce can't serve our hair's needs. The scalp can't manufacturer enough natural moisture to replenish the moisture we're stripping from our hair on a daily basis; and 3) The products we usually use in an attempt to fight dryness (usually petroleum-based products, or "grease") don't really add moisture to the hair at all. They simply coat the hair with petroleum to provide shine. At the same time, they clog the pores of the scalp so that the scalp can't secrete its own natural moisture. Some people think that Black hair either doesn't grow as fast as Caucasian hair or doesn't grow at all. WRONG! All hair grows at the same rate on average inch per month. But the reason that most black women have shorter hair is because of breakage. Why does the hair break? Because of the harsh treatment we give it. We strip it of its moisture in every way we possibly can! So after a period of time (short for some, a little longer for others) the need for a cut to camouflage the damage done to your hair will become evident. When your stylist suggests a designer cut (like the fade), that's your cue that your hair has had enough.

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