Ask Audrey . . . Transitioning from Relaxed to ‘Texlaxed’ and Stiff Hair Issues

Hi guys, it’s Audrey!
Today we’re going to answer a few questions that we’ve gotten from the SBH community!  It’s a great way to stay in touch and answer some of your burning questions. When possible, I’ll try to include a video response to really help things along! The questions really span the gamut of hair care. Some of them are more practical, day-to-day hair care questions, while others are more technical in nature. We’ll try to answer as many as possible- so stay tuned!

Today’s a straight hair day for me, so I’ve decided we’ll answer some questions about straight/relaxed hair.

Just love Houston's humidity!

*sigh* Houston’s humidity! You can see the swelling, but it’s cool.  You already know, I looooove BIG hair (and Macs, too.)

Q:  How can I safely go from relaxed to texlaxed hair?

Going from relaxed hair (fully processed) to texlaxed hair (intentionally underprocessed) is pretty simple, and is really one of the best things you can do for your relaxed hair. Leaving in a bit of extra texture helps reduce hair breakage and improves your hair’s elasticity.

At your next relaxer, simply base your hair with an oil of your choice from root to tip. This will protect your relaxed ends from additional processing from relaxer run-off and it will give a buffer to your new growth that will slow down the relaxing process.  Adding oil to your relaxer cream, as well as, processing the hair for a shorter length of time will also help you safely move from fully processed hair, to just slightly underprocessed (or texlaxed) hair.

Depending on how underprocessed you decide to go, there may be a big texture differential (line of demarcation) that you’ll need to contend with. As with any transitioning hair, you’ll need to handle you hair with care to avoid breakage.

Q:  After my last relaxer my hair has become stiff; it has no body or bounce at all. What did I do wrong and how can I repair it?

Stiff hair is a sign that your hair’s moisture balance is off. Without elasticity, your hair becomes rigid and isn’t as pliable.  This can happen after a relaxer if the hair isn’t conditioned well immediately afterward since the relaxing process cleaves hydrogen bonds and relaxing tends to dehydrate the hair.  The best thing to do is to try a moisturizing deep conditioning treatment with a rich, creamy conditioner like Kenra MC or KeraCare Humecto.  There are tons of other great deep conditioners that will fit the bill.  For best results, leave your conditioner on for 10 minutes with heat. This will help soften the hair and return some elasticity. Give it a deep conditioning session or two to correct. Once your moisture balance is restored, you’ll find the volume and softness you lost. =D

If you have used a no-lye relaxer, you may need to chelate in the cleansing following your appointment. No-lye relaxers tend to leave behind pesky mineral deposits that can make your hair feel  stiff/rough. You’ll need a chelating shampoo to lift these deposits and restore elasticity.

Lots more questions to get to, so stay tuned ladies!  – Audrey!

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Comments

  1. Can you address other straightening options like keratin treatments, huetiful’s nano smoothing, brazilian blowouts, etc.

  2. What I noticed is that since I am completely free of the chemical relaxer my hair is soft and bouncy all of the time. There is no stiffness like there was when I was in transition mode which is what caused me to BC sooner than I planned to. I think if I had known the reason this was happening I would have transitioned much longer.

  3. Ms. Audrey,
    You don’t mention anything about ayurveda, i.e. Amla powder/oil, Brahmi powders etc., why not? Does this path of hair care provide another or alternate remedy to quality products and maintenance?

    • Hi Bridgett,
      I don’t mention Ayurveda because I am *personally* not super-big into it…. It’s a personal bias showing! =) But there’s definitely nothing wrong with it. The powders and oils are awesome and they definitely won’t hurt your regimen. I do keep a few Indian items in rotation– Vatika Oil and Amla oil. My husband is from that part of the world, too and his mom actually turned me on to Amla and some of the other oils. =D
      I think that’s something we can definitely touch on in the next edition of The Science of Black Hair. Thanks!!!

  4. Your book mentioned oil based moisturizer to maintain straight styles hair, but only listed water based moisturizing products. Can you provide a list for oil based ones?

    • Hi Ellie!
      The oil-based moisturizers I refer to are still water-based moisturizers– they just have more oil content- if that makes sense. For example, something like Curls Creme Brule is a WBM, but it won’t revert a straight style as fast as something much wetter. I will try to get a list together of the more oil rich moisturizers that are okay for maintaing a straight style. =D

  5. Thanks for answering those questions. You, somehow answered my own questions too. Have a good day!

  6. Can you recommend a good hairstylist in Houston to texlax black hair as my hairstylist went into previously texlaxed hair and now I have 3 textures 😞

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