All Facts related to Hair Straightening

SAFEST WAY TO STRAIGHTEN HAIR

There are many ways to straighten your tresses these days, by chemicals, heat and shampoo/ styling products. All the ways are effective in their own sense. But the safest way to straighten hair is by the use of special shampoos and styling products. The specially designed products help in smoothing frizz and softening curls but the effect is not that much. These products don’t give perfectly straight hair. Use moisturizing shampoos and conditioners means for fighting frizz. Also, straightening creams and serums applied before or after blow drying can reduce curls by coating the strands.


FORMALDEHYDES



Some straightening treatments contain formaldehydes and that too higher levels, which are considered unsafe. Even Keratin treatments have formaldehydes. Side effects of formaldehyde exposure are eye irritation, rashes, headaches, breathing problems, nausea and vomiting and these symptoms are particularly found in salon workers who have to deal with it regularly.
When buying straightening products, be cautious and read the label and avoid these ingredients – formaldehyde, formol, formalin, methanol, morbidic acid, formic aldehyde, methyl aldehyde, oxymethylene, glutaraldehyde, (glyoxal) ethanedial n-octyl aldehyde, aldehyde C-8 or caprylaldehyde.


AMINO ACID STRAIGHTENING TREATMENTS

These are next generation of hair smoothing treatments and mainly loosen curls and smooth frizz. These contain no formaldehydes or aldehydes so these are safer than keratin treatments or some other chemical hair straightening treatments. This amino acid straightening treatment doesn’t give you that perfect pin straight hair but softens hair, smooths away frizz and gives you much more manageable hair for three to six months. Go for a salon treatment by professionals only.

RISKS OF CHEMICAL HAIR STRAIGHTENERS


Very harsh chemicals are used in this type of straightening method and hence, the risk of damage is always more. Go for professionals and not local cheap parlors and treatments as, if chemicals used incorrectly, it may cause scalp burns, breakage and severe hair loss too. If you plan to do the relaxing treatment at home, then make sure you follow the instructions properly and carefully. Don’t rush or elongate the process to get better results as it will only do harm.

TIPS FOR USING RELAXERS SAFELY
  • Don’t scratch your head or brush your hair before a relaxer procedure.
  • Do a strand test first.
  • Don’t let the relaxer be in hair for too long.
  • Use a neutralizing shampoo to wash the relaxer out properly.
  • Take someone’s help.
  • Apply petroleum jelly to your scalp to protect it from chemicals before you apply the relaxer.

WHAT TO DO BEFORE A CHEMICAL STRAIGHTENING TREATMENT
Chemical straightening can create havoc to your hair if not done the right way. Consult an experienced hairstylist first. Do proper research and decide what treatment you want to go for. Schedule an appointment with your stylist to get your hair analyzed and check whether your hair would be able to go through the treatment.
I have got mine checked at 3 places and only local salons offer me straightening with full results. I don’t believe them. The good ones say either a ‘NO’ or agree to max 80% results. I never agree to that J.

DON’T GO FOR STRAIGHTENING TOO OFTEN
Chemical Straightening damages hair. Hence, don’t go for it too often. The ‘how often’ depends upon the straightening treatment you chose and your hair type and quality too. Decide by mind. Decide wisely.


KERATIN AND COLOR TOGETHER!!
Never…Never. If you opt for a keratin straightening, don’t go for coloring procedure simultaneously as it will do more damage. If you want to color your hair, do it after you have done straightening. Use semi permanent hair dye than permanent one as it will be gentler on your treated fragile hair.
However, it is safe to use an amino acid straightener and color your hair at the same time. 


MINIMIZE FRIZZ THROUGH RIGHT HAIR BRUSH

Choosing right hair brush can give smoother hair and minimizes frizz too. Choose a large round brush, preferable of ceramic material. It will cause lesser damage and is best for smoothing your hair. Do it in a rolling motion while blow drying.

PROTECT YOUR HAIR WHILE FLAT IRONING

May be flat irons do damage, but I use these extensively. Flat irons are very effective to straighten hair till your next wash but with flat irons too, taking precautions and proper care is very important to the reduce the amount of damage to your hair. To get good results and keep your hair healthy –
  • Pick high quality flat iron that has ceramic plates and adjustable heat settings.
  • Try to straighten your hair at lowest setting if it works for you and increase accordingly to get that perfect straight hair.
  • Use a silicon based styling product to protect your hair from the heat.
  • Make sure that your hair are completely dry before starting the flat ironing.

HOW TO FIX DAMAGED HAIR
Do you also feel that the only way to fix damaged hair is to cut it!!
NO
A haircut is a quick and easy way to get rid of damage done by heat or chemical treating.But there are some other ways too to improve the look and feel of your hair like some special shampoos and conditioners and masks for chemically treated hair that add moisture to your hair and make them look better. Products with dimethicone decrease static electricity and frizz and boost shine. Natural oils for the hair also help hair retain moisture and keep it straight longer.

THERMAL CONDITIONING / JAPANESE HAIR STRAIGHTENING

Thermal Conditioning lasts most – until your hair grows out. That’s wonderful. It works best for medium to curly hair and takes about 2 to 4 hours depending upon hair thickness and length. The hair are soaked in a solution to break the bonds, then washed and dried and flat ironed to the extent you want your straightness. Go for a color, if mandatory, not before than 3 days after you have got the treatment done, to avoid damage.


PREGNANCY AND HAIR STRAIGHTENING

There are many myths surrounding pregnancy and hair straightening. There are a variety of chemicals used to straighten hair and it is believed that only a small amount is absorbed into the body through skin – not enough to harm the baby. If you have concern, always ask your health care provider. And if can delay it somewhat, then why risk J . Enjoy that phase fully without bothering about hair and all that 😉
I hope all your questions related to hair straightening are solved now 🙂
Do let me know who is going for which procedure now !!

Stay Blessed,
Happy Hair !!

Hugs,
Charu 🙂

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