Is it Possible to Keep African-American Hair Straight Without a Relaxer?

My hair is in the process of recovering from a major loss. If I had to estimate, I’d say that I lost over 85 percent of my original hair. At first I was devastated –what woman wouldn’t be?

After I came to terms with my hair loss, I took the necessary steps to identify the cause. Next, I had to stop the loss as well as figure out the best way to regrow my hair. One major contributor to my hair loss was the harsh chemical relaxers that I had been putting in my hair, which had to be touched up approximately every six weeks. In the past, I vowed to never go without a relaxer because my hair was just too kinky and unmanageable without one. That was prior to the massive hair loss, which actually forced me to come to the conclusion that relaxers just aren’t good for my hair.

After coming to the realization that my hair could no longer handle the damaging chemicals, I began to panic because my natural hair is so kinky. Thankfully my sister bought me a Miniglide straightener for Christmas. The Miniglide is perfect for my hair because it’s currently quite short. I hadn’t used the flat iron yet, so now the time had come to put it to the test to determine if I could keep my hair straight without chemicals.

Before using the Miniglide for the first time, I spent a great deal of money on special products: hair loss shampoo and conditioner that stop hair loss immediately, a deep conditioner, as well as various heat protecting sprays, straightening creams and polishing sprays.

After washing and thoroughly conditioning my hair, I applied the straightening cream of my choice and blow dried my hair before using the Miniglide. My hair wasn’t as straight as I would have liked it to have been after using the Miniglide, but I’m sure that if I have it professionally straightened, it will be bone straight like I desire. I’ve heard of women having better results with different straightening creams and flat irons, and I’m thinking about getting a different flat iron since the Miniglide doesn’t have a temperature gauge and only reaches 220 degrees.

After experimenting with different types of heat protectants, straightening lotions and similar products along with my Miniglide, I have come to the conclusion that it is possible to still have attractive, straight hair without the use of harsh chemicals. As long as you are protecting your hair when you apply heat and only flat ironing after washing and deep conditioning your hair, your hair should be able to be nearly as straight as it would be if you had a relaxer in it. The only exception is whenever your hair becomes wet or comes in contact with humidity, it will revert. Then again, there are products to prevent that from happening as well.

I feel I’ve made a wise decision by deciding not to put more chemicals in my hair. My hair may not be quite as silky as it was with the relaxer, but at least it’s a great deal softer and healthier.