Hair Relaxers: Debunking the Myth
Hair relaxing became very popular in the 80’s, after people realized the jerry curl couldn’t give them versatility and was too greasy. No lye relaxers were formulated due to the complaints of burning from women who were getting relaxer services. No lye relaxers were presented as a gentler/milder form of relaxer without the lye.
Women happily grabbed boxes of relaxer and applied their chemicals at home to save money, and for convenience. When they’re hair became dry and brittle, and began to shed they couldn’t understand why their hair did not look like the models on the boxes.
The reason: The no lye relaxers come in two forms, calcium hydroxide and lithium hydroxide. (CaOH is the chemical formula for calcium hydroxide.) The OH at the end of this compound is actually the base/lye component. The calcium causes deposits on the hair, causing it to become dry and brittle.
Because hair consists of three layers and relaxer penetrates to the second layer of the hair to break polypeptide (protein) bonds. The cuticle (first layer of the hair) remains open if relaxer is just rinsed and neutralized after processing. (Which causes splitting, shedding, and breakage.)
In order for relaxed hair to remain healthy avoidance of relaxers containing Calcium Hydroxide should be avoided at all costs. Not only does the Calcium result in dryness but also the neutralizer in the box is not sufficient to remove traces of relaxer from the hair. Which leads to hair loss and large amounts of shedding especially around the hairline and temples.
After a relaxer the cuticle or first layer of the hair is opened and neutralizer removes traces of relaxer from the hair. What the hair needs is a Stabilizer or a conditioner with a low pH to return hair back to its optimal acidic pH balance and seal the cuticle and rearrange the polypeptide bonds which were broken during application of the relaxer.
After 3-5 minutes hair can be neutralized thoroughly. Application of a moisturizing or deep conditioner and rinsing and styling will complete the process.
Foot Note: In order to prevent over-lapping (relaxer touching the ends of the hair) which leads to over -processing and dryness. Apply a conditioner to the ends of your hair so that relaxer will not have direct contact with previously relaxed hair.
If you are relying on a Professional (Cosmetologist) towel, which was used to drape you before, the procedure is changed afterwards.
Enjoy Healthy Hair.
In 2007 Diva By Cindy Hair Care Company developed a three-step condition hair relaxer system, which would resolve this problem. A sodium hydroxide (NaOH) relaxer containing aloe and Shea Butter was developed. (The aloe is to soothe and prevent burns, and the Shea Butter to moisturize).
After the relaxer is rinsed a product called the Stabilizer Plus (or the Ultimate Treatment) is applied. This product seals the cuticle or hair shaft, and rearranges the polypeptide or protein bonds which were broken. Because the pH of hair is acidic and relaxer is a base/or alkali, the pH of the stabilizer is a 3 (acidic).
The purpose of the stabilizer (Ultimate Treatment) is to bring hair back to its normal acid mantle pH.
Process: Relax hair, rinse relaxer, apply stabilizer, rinse after 2-3 minutes, and shampoo with Diva By Cindy Neutralizer.
Shedding and breakage is a thing of the past, now women can enjoy straighter hair with body and bounce. Healthy hair can be attained by all who wish to relax their hair.