Top Tips For Using A Relaxer On Your Hair

a black women with relaxed hair
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Using a relaxer gives you endless styling options: updos, ponytails, textured styles, and more. But take care if you’re doing it at home, as it can damage your hair. Field and Education Manager for Dark and Lovely Hanson Ndabeni gives us his top tips for relaxing hair at home.

Top Relaxer do’s

  • Avoid shampooing for 72hrs before relaxing
  • Choose the correct relaxer strength depending on the texture of your hair
  • Apply a base cream on the scalp and hairline before relaxer application
  • Remove braids, extensions, etc. 7 -15 days before relaxing
  • Apply the relaxer on virgin hair only (not on hair that has been previously relaxed)
  • Section the hair in small partings and apply the relaxer 2cm away from the scalp, starting on the crown and work your way towards the nape and proceed from the crown towards the forehead.
  • Allow processing as per the texture timings listed as per manufacturer’s instructions
  • Rinse out the relaxer with lukewarm water and follow on with a neutralizing shampoo – 2 to 3 shampoos.

Top Relaxer don’ts

  • Do not use if scalp is irritated or damaged
  • Do not apply a relaxer over a Henna or Progressive color
  • Don’t color (permanent) and relax on the same day
  • Do not mix technologies i.e. a relaxer should never be applied over a “Thio” based product also known as a “step one” or” perm lotion”
  • Never leave the relaxer on for longer than the recommended time