Stay (at home) Spa!

Stay (at home) Spa!

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Never Forget My (Relaxed) Roots

Ok my chemically dependent sisters, this one is for you! During my 13 month schooling I learned so much about hair relaxers. A lot of the information given to me I knew, but there was some information that I never knew or realized that a lot of the terminology that I had been using as it pertained to my hair was WRONG. On top of that, these terms and ways of doing things were adopted by the stylists I've gone to! So part of the blame of why my hair fell out on some occassions were as a result of the the stylists.
When I was in school, I vowed that I would do hair the right way. I have been doing hair for about 15 years, but it was from watching different stylists and creating my own style of doing things. I soon found out that your own style doesn't mean it's the right way, or that the customers best interest will be at heart. A lot of stylists cut corners in order to get more heads in the chair. While there are techniques that can be used to cut a process down, a clients service should never be compromised so one can make more money- that is not how you keep or expand your clientele.

Did you know?

All my life, I have called a relaxer a perm. I need a perm, how much does a perm cost, do you want to perm my hair? perm perm perm! It wasn't until I was in Cosmetology school that I learned this term for the type of chemical process WE get is WRONG.
Perm is short for PERMANENT WAVE. What is a permanent wave? A permanent wave is a chemical process used for someone who is caucasian (for example) or any other nationality that has straight hair and wishes to have curly or wavy hair. Likewise, permanent waves are chemical treatments used by African Americans (for example) or other nationalities with extremely curly hair who wish to loosen (not straighten) their curl pattern. An example of a permanent wave is Wave Nuveau, which we've seen in many "around the way" hair salons.
A RELAXER is what I used to have, and so many of you receive every 6-8 weeks. This is the correct term (not perm). A relaxer relaxes the curl pattern making it straight. Now one may say well I can use the term "perm" because the treatment permanently straightens my hair. While that is a good argument, it's still incorrect. If you go to any beauty supply store and look at relaxer boxes, it will say "hair relaxer" or "no lye hair relaxer". It will not say "perm".

Treatments & Products for Relaxed Hair:
Pantene Pro-V for Relaxed & Natural Hair- this line of products holds true to it's name. It works both for relaxed and natural hair. I've used it when I had a relaxer, during my transition period, and when my hair was fully rid of chemicals. They have a great line which includes a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner, a shampoo for dry scalp (which is excellent) and a hair mask which is amazing. If you're looking for a new shampoo and conditioning treatment, look into Pantene Pro-V products. You can get it at your local beauty supply store, as well as Duane Reade, CVS or Target stores (DR, CVS and Target often has sales so check your weekly circulars for more information).

Moroccan Oil- chances are you will not find this product in your normal African American hair salon, but you will find it in your middle-upper class African American and Dominican hair salon. This product is great for deep conditioning and hot oil treatments. You can also take the oil and mix it with your hair formula when coloring hair. The oil helps to moisturize the cuticles to prevent breakage during the color process.

Conditioners- you can't go wrong with Alter Ego or Alfa Parf conditioners. They are very good for chemically treated hair. If you are running low on funds, a good 'ole jar of cholesterol mixed with extra virgin olive oil will be a great deep conditioner.

Some of the above products are expensive, but they are great for the hair. There are some store-brought conditioners that are good but I am a firm believer that "you get what you pay for". So make sure whatever products you get for your hair, make sure they work for you. DON'T short change yourself with products- you'd rather pay quality money for quality products for quality results/healthy hair, than pay a cheap price for a cheap product and end up with cheap/damaged hair.

In conclusion, for the summer months, make sure you keep your hair conditioned if your hair is constantly exposed to sun and chlorine/salt water. Stay away from excessive heat/blow drying to prevent split ends.

Until we meet again, take care of your hair!