As naturals we love our fierce curls and kinks that make our hair gorgeous and full of body. It’s a given that we’ll want to change up our hair style every once and while and rock straight hair (mainly for the length checks). However when straightening your hair you should know a few things that will keep you from a number of negative outcomes that could effect the health, look and feel of your hair.
You must prepare your hair properly especially if you’re straightening your hair after you’ve just washed it. A good way to lift your cuticle to absorb more moisture is by using a steamer with your deep conditioner as well as a good sealant. This will pump way more moisture into your hair and avoid dryness. Also try to avoid blow drying and straightening in the same setting as this will increase your chance of moisture making whatever products you’ve put in your hair beforehand a non factor.
The golden rule every natural should follow is always straighten your hair on low heat, you may want sleek and straight looking hair but using high levels of heat will cause damage. Remember straight hair will last only a few days and is not worth messing up years of work that you’ve put into the health of your hair.
Never straighten your hair without a heat protectant. There are many out there that work brilliantly in coating your hair strands and repelling heat penetration to the cuticle layer. I left this step out of my regimen when I straightened my hair a few years ago and stripped my curl pattern along the back of my neck. Heat protectants are inexpensive and normally come in a spray form and cause a lot of steam as you straighten your hair because they act as a buffer between your hair and the heat.
Always be aware of just how many times you’re going over a section of your hair with your straightener. Even with a heat protectant on your hair too much heat is still too much heat. During the straightening process the ultimate goal is to get the look you desire with very little heat damage.
Never attempt to fully straighten your roots. Your roots are where your new growth peaks and this hair is fragile as it is the newest and most under nourished part of your hair. You could strip your curl pattern and create straggly unnatural looking curls as well as cause the hair to weaken and break off.
Lastly, protect your ends by applying the heat protectant evenly and by properly moisturising your hair beforehand. Failure to do so will certainly result in dry and brittle ends that will lead to the loss of length.
Overall keeping these 6 tips in mind will lead to a much healthier straightening process. There is no sure way to stop heat damage from happening as using high levels of heat will always effect your moisture levels. Never hold unrealistic goals for your natural hair remember that it will look a certain way (poofy with a hint of kink) and will not be bone straight. Use light weight products that promote sleek looking hair like argan oil. This will help weigh down the hair even more and give a healthy finish to your look!