This weekend as I was sitting on the floor in my room, getting ready to braid my hair while watching Friends, in a spur of the moment I decided to straighten my hair.
Look at that length! My hair has grown so quickly without the relaxer. My natural hair is almost half the length of my whole hair now!
Now before you panic and ask, "But what about Back2Curly?!?!?", don't worry! I didn't permanently straighten my hair with a relaxer or any harsh chemicals; I used a blow dryer and flat iron.
If you protect your hair well from heat styling, natural hair should revert "back2curly" as soon as water hits it. Using heat on your hair does not compromise the natural texture or shape of the cuticle in the same way that chemically straightening does. Versatility is one of the great things about natural hair! However, it's important limit the use of heat, and keep the temperatures below 450°F/232°C so as not to damage the hair.
There are a few key steps to keeping your hair healthy when heat styling. The first is to moisturize. I washed my hair using the OGX Beauty Renewing Argan Oil of Morocco Shampoo and OGX Beauty Renewing Argan Oil of Morocco Conditioner. This pair cleans well, doesn't strip your hair of moisture, and makes it easy to detangle.
Next, I sectioned my hair and applied the Shea Moisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen, Grow & Restore Leave-In Conditioner throughout. I then parted my hair in smaller sections to apply the Shea Moisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen, Grow & Restore Hair Serum to my scalp. I throughly detangled with my Denman Brush.
By this point, my hair was partly air-dried. This was a good thing, because it would take less heat to dry my hair.
Two heat protectants to avoid heat damage!
I made small sections and combed a tiny amount of the Shea Moisture Argan Oil and Almond Milk Smooth & Tame Blow Out Créme through the section. Then I used about two small pumps of the Shea Moisture Sacha Inchi Oil Omega 3, 6, 9 Rescue + Repair Heat Protect Oil Serum from the roots to the ends. After, I used a blowdryer with a comb attachment on the lowest heat setting.
Once I finished blow drying, I flat ironed in small sections, only passing the iron through each section a maximum of two times.
The whole process took about 2.5 hours, so this is not something I will be doing often.
Also, as soon as I walked out into the Hong Kong humidity (always at least 80% and up, especially in the summer!), my hair "puffed" up a little, trying to revert. I don't mind my hair being a little puffy, so it's fine for me. I also didn't anticipate it being so hot and rainy this week in Hong Kong. My advice would be to check the weather report for the week if you are planning to straighten your hair and want to preserve the style for a while! Lessons learned :)
It's so humid, my natural hair was trying to revert as soon as I walked outside. Oh well!
I probably won't be straightening again until winter time, so we'll see then how my straightened hair will react to a different climate in the East Coast winter.
Going to trim to even things out at the end of the week!
When was the last time you heat styled your hair? What's your routine? Have you tried any of the products I mentioned? I would love to hear about it in the comments below!
Click the images above to view the products on Amazon.com!