How to Extend a Relaxer for Six Months

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Healthy hair comes from moderate chemical treatments.
Healthy hair comes from moderate chemical treatments. (Image: model hold her hair high key image by Frenk_Danielle Kaufmann from Fotolia.com)

For most black women, after receiving their first relaxers, touch-ups have become a regular four- to six-week regimen. Those fluffy, course or curly strands of hair that appear as their new growth has been a continuous signal that it was time for a chemical straightening. According to WebMD, "At any one time, about 90 percent of the hair on a person's scalp is growing." This explains why many black women experience difficulty with growing long and healthy hair, because they are habitually processing their hair when it is most vulnerable -- the growth stage. Extending your relaxer for six months can give your hair much needed time to strengthen and grow in between treatments.

Things You'll Need

  • Deep conditioner
  • Curling or flat iron

Manage your hair's new growth. Managing your new growth properly will allow you to still have that straight-hair look without the damaging aid of a chemical relaxer. The best way to do this is by taming your new growth with the application of a deep conditioner.

When looking for a deepconditioner, look for one that contains humectants or essential fatty acids, E.F.A.s. These key ingredients will give both your new growth and hair strands the moisture it needs to be soft and smooth. It's important to note that a deep-conditioning treatment should not be complete in less than five minutes, instead, the entire process should be timed for at least 10 minutes.

Keep your hair moisturized. Dry hair strands are often the reason behind many bad looking hair styles. A common mistake that black women make when this happens is by turning to a relaxer in an attempt to regain that bouncy and shiny hair appearance.

When you apply a few drops of mineral oil such as, jojoba, coconut or olive oil to your hair strands, you instantly improve the look of your hairstyle. This process is referred to as moisturizing your hair because you are literally adding moisture to your hair strands. While this is a recommended hair care rule, it should only be done twice a week.

Choose a low-maintenance hair style. A major benefit of using a relaxer, is the ability to wear your hair in different styles with little styling hassle. When you decide to extend your relaxer, the same styles that were easy may become difficult to achieve. To avoid the added temptation to receive a relaxer, choose a "do" that is easy to style and easy to keep.

A hairstyle like the wrap, will allow your hair to maintain that look of sleek, sophistication weeks after your touch-up appointment has passed.

Tips & Warnings

  • Wash and deep-condition your hair at least once a week. When extending your relaxer, it's important to take care of your hair's cleansing needs; not only so that your hair will appear freshly done, so that your pores will remain unclogged as well, allowing your hair to grow healthy and faster than it would normally.
  • Don't be afraid to use heat. When you're trying to keep your hair smooth and manageable the key is to use heating hairstyling devices wisely. Generally, after you have washed your hair you have the perfect opportunity to use a curling or flat iron afterwards. Avoiding both heating devices and relaxers will cause your hair to look as if it is in need of a chemical treatment.

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