Straightening Natural Hair? Don't forget These 7 Tips!
Feeling the need to grab that flat-iron or pressing comb to straighten your natural hair? Wait! Before you do, don't forget these six critical tips to remember when straightening your natural hair. Heat-styling can cause permanent damage to your kinky, coily, culy hair, so if full healthy tresses are your goal, try styling using alternative methods.
1) Work with a Professional
Whether you’re pressing, flat-ironing, or even blow drying, you may retain more length if you let the professionals take care of your heat-styled looks.
Doing your hair at home with your possibly less-than-professional-grade tools and techniques could cause long-term damage. This damage is not worth the cost of a professional press and curl. Ask your hairdresser if she offers discounts if you arrive to her salon with your hair already freshly-washed. She may cut the price $10 or $20.
Look for a professional who has at least three years of salon heat-styling experience, word-of-mouth references, and professional heat-styling tools.
Try to work with someone who values natural hair and knows of alternative hair-stretching practices. If you just transitioned and your stylist is only accustomed to doing relaxed hair, it may be time to find a new salon. It’s easier to entrust a stylist who styles natural hair on a regular basis so they will be more familiar with the sensitivity of your particular hair type.
2) Prepare For Humidity
Be realistic with yourself, especially if you live in a humid area. I had my hair done in California at 8 a.m. and flew to New Orleans at 1 p.m. My hair started to frizz by 10 O’clock and I landed in New Orleans at 9:30 pm!
My hair does much better in California, but I was realistic with myself and knew that my natural hair stood no chance in that kind of humidity.
If you live in a less humid area, don’t apply too many water-based products while your hair is straight.
3) Wrap Your Hair At Night
Before going to bed, apply Kimberly Elise Naturals® Alchemy 27 Hair & Scalp Elixir, then wrap your hair with a satin or silk scarf. Some prefer scarves while others like a bonnet. Do whatever works for you. It will keep your hair from breaking and shedding too much at night while it is in a fragile state.
4) Use curlers to re-straighten when needed
To maintain your straight hair, you can try using flexi-rods and other curlers so you can avoid putting more heat on it every day. Type 4 hair will get frizzy, but if you went to the right hairstylist, your hair should be easier to style and re-straighten after your appointment for a week or two.
5) Don't use the highest heat setting
If you do choose to heat style your hair yourself, be sure to use the best quality tools that you can. If there is a temperature dial, use the lowest possible temperature to straighten your hair. Rarely does one need to use the maximum heat level to effectively straighten.
6) Be sure to use a heat protectant.
There are many available at your beauty supply or you can use a natural oil, like avocado oil, which has a very high heat point. Of course, test any oil on your hair to make sure you get the results you are looking for.
7) Clean hair only!
Finally, never ever apply heat to your hair when it is dirty. You may feel like a little touch-up to your roots or edges will be fine, but that is a sure way to promote breakage. As mentioned above, opt for large rollers or large braids to help stretch your hair and to help give longevity to your straightened style.
Kimberly Elise Naturals® captures the power and effectiveness of nature to help you achieve your most radiant, beautiful glow. Our Sulfate-Free Natural Hair Care System is a clean beauty solution formulated to nurture and strengthen the beautiful curls, twirls, and coils unique to Afro-textured hair using organic, naturally-derived, premium ingredients. Kimberly Elise Naturals® Alchemy 27 Hair + Scalp Elixir is for any woman who wants to address her hair breakage concerns naturally.