We all love a change of appearance every now and then. People tan their skin for a darker tone, paint their nails to a holiday’s special design, or wear colorful lenses for a different vibe. Then, there are people who straighten their hair to have a smooth, silky and luxurious look. Straight hair is relatively achievable for a night or two with the help of extensions and wigs but straightening your hair permanently is a feat of its own. Although permanent here usually means about 4 – 6 months, that is still a remarkable transformation as it changes your hair type completely, and it certainly has less attaching and detaching and long exhausting salon appointments. Beauty seekers have practiced numerous ways to perform permanent hair straightening at home. But just like any other in-home method, the main question is, is it going to be as good as the hair straightening methods done by professionals at salons? Is it even possible to straighten your hair permanently at home?
Is it possible to straighten hair permanently at home?
To put it simply, when it comes to permanent hair smoothening at home, there are two types of solutions. First, to try to replicate the salon procedures with the chemicals, the ironing, and the rest of the process by yourself or with the help of a friend at home, and then, to try DIY methods of using masks with natural ingredients found in the kitchen, extensive combing, using hair ties overnight or other techniques to prevent your hair from frizziness. As each hair type has its characteristics, it might be hard to choose a one-size-fits-all solution. These methods vary by time, the ingredients, the painfulness, the needed equipment, and the level of styling proficiency necessary to perform the straightening. But the mutual aspect of most of these hair straightening practices is that they DO work, and they have been proven over time to be viable solutions for people who are trying to straighten their hair by themselves.
All the things that independent frizzy-haired individuals need to do are find the proper procedure that suits their hair type, their time, and the amount of effort they want to put into this process. In this article, we try to break down the mechanics of permanent hair straightening and present to you the most commonly used methods utilized for hair straightening at home by thousands of people every day to help you find the best possible solution for yourself.
What is the procedure of permanent hair straightening?
This is not the biology class, but to understand the different straightening methods, you need to learn what makes the hair curly and how permanent straightening methods aim to counter that.
So basically, the hair is mainly made of protein. You have probably overheard the word “Keratin” in a conversation your stylist was having with a client. That is because the protein in hair is called Keratin. Like every single element in the universe, this protein contains a set of molecules. One of them is called sulfide. When paired together, sulfides make a disulfide bonding that bends the hair. Because as they gravitate towards each other, they do not group up in a straight order. So, people with more sulfides in their hair and more disulfide bondings have curlier and frizzier hair. That is the natural way of things.
However, we have developed methods to confront these bends to bend nature in our favor. What chemical hair straightening materials of most kinds do, is dissolve these disulfide bonds to prevent the molecules from curling around and relax them in their position. Then, to preserve the order after the dissolution, other substances are used as neutralizers to mechanically lock the new shape of the hair in its place. With the help of this robust strategy, your naturally curly hair remains straight for long periods until new strings are grown that are unfamiliar with all these substances and materials.
Every permanent hair straightening method shares the same battle with the disulfide bondings. The differences are, for example, whether to dissolve the connections with chemicals or relax them with natural masks, or for the next step, using factory-made neutralizers to fix the hair or tying the hair for long periods to achieve similar results.
Whatever the method, the goal is the same. So without further ado, let us introduce you to some of the best practices used by individuals of different backgrounds and hair types daily to achieve permanent hair straightening at home.
What are the best ways to straighten hair permanently?
At-home Keratin treatment kits
One of the most cost-effective yet feasible permanent hair straightening options is using one of the many available at-home Keratin treatment kits on the market. Compared to the salon treatments, you will endure much less chemical exposure to the likes of formaldehyde, and once done right, you will achieve pretty similar results. Keratin treatment kits are much better nowadays, and that is due to the advancement of the related technology to match the growing demand for more cost and time-effective treatments at home.
It is worth noting that the effective timespan of the straightening by at-home Keratin treatments is less than salon treatments, but in return, you would not have to spend 300$ or more per session, and you will absorb less toxicity from the products.
If it is your first time using such treatments, you will have to pay extra attention to the instruction included with the kits and try applying them in an airy room to avoid inhaling the chemicals. Also, as with most hair products, make sure to pick the suitable variant for your hair to get the best possible results.
Hair-smoothing serums and creams
Using hair smoothing creams is probably one of the easiest and fastest ways to get straighter hair. However, there is a catch. Hair serums do not give you salon-worthy straight hair right away. You would have to use them regularly and make a habit of applying them after each shower to attain your preferred look. They are very convenient, do not need extra tools for application, and are relatively cheap. Plus, some models are specially designed for hair straightening, and once used over time, they can be some of the more convenient choices for permanent hair straightening.
Since most hair-soothing creams are mainly used to nourish, moisturize, and protect the hair from breakage, dehydration, and stress, they offer a range of services to your hair, along with straightening.
Using hair serums is as easy as masking your hair with them. There are ones that need to be applied to dry hair, but the straightening versions mostly work better with wet air as your hair is more flexible when wet, and the risk for damage is lower.
Which hair serum or cream is best for permanent hair straightening?
There are countless hair serums out there designed to help you achieve hair straightening as easily and fast as possible. In order to make the finest choice, you have to consider a few qualities that make the difference between better serums and the rest. Your safest choice would be a serum that has everything great about hair serums along with a designated focus on hair straightening. Generally, all available creams are supposed to shine your strands to a silky astonishing result and to protect your hair from frizziness in more humid conditions. Still, the ones manufactured specifically for hair straightening at home combine the conventional qualities of a hair serum with your desirable smoothening benefits. By choosing a versatile product that helps you achieve multiple beauty goals as well as straighten your hair, you can make the most of your beauty routine and enjoy the saved time and money with your loved ones.
Tying your hair overnight
Enter the mechanical methods. This one is one of the oldest tricks in the book and has stood its test over time. Some people believe this trick originated in Argentina. For many years, Argentinian women have been tying their partially dried hair in small portions overnight to prevent them from curling up when fully dried to wake up with much straighter hair in the morning. Again, just like the cream solution, once you follow this method time and time again, you can have naturally straighter hair that has taken a new form and has much less resistance to straightening.
There is some complexity to handling this process, but once you practice it a few times, you will get a hold of it soon. You wash your hair and apply typical hair conditioners as usual. Next, try drying your hair with a towel or a blowdryer that preferably uses the cool setting. Continue drying your hair until it is partially wet and then brush it to have damp straight hair. Create small hair segments and pin the segments close to your scalp using hairpins and keep this formation overnight. Using this method, you reduce the chances of frizziness and wake up with much sleeker and straighter hair.
Natural hair straightening masks
We all have heard of at least a few naturally made hair products. People use such remedies for hydration, protection, preventing hair loss, and of course, hair straightening. There are plenty of combinations of ingredients that can be used to achieve hair straightening at home using natural masks.
These combinations usually follow the same strategy as Keratin treatments. One of them is used to nourish the hair to make it smoother and straighter, and the other is used to fortify the latter’s benefits and act as an emollient.
Obviously, you can not expect pin-straight results from these methods. Still, if you turn using them into a daily or weekly habit, they can prove to bring unexpectedly effective results. After all, all good things take time. Most importantly, hair straightening using natural masks is undoubtedly the healthiest option out there, free of all the chemicals and stressful materials, ties, and bands. You simply can not go wrong by trying these methods:
Banana + Honey Mask
When used individually, each of these materials offers several benefits to your hair. Banana works wonders in terms of bringing lots of moisture to your hair strands, acting as natural nourishment to make your hair softer and straighter. Then, honey, one of the most resistant edibles against bacteria, infection, and spoilage, covers your hair, protects it against all kinds of stress, and seals the moisture in, just like a non-chemical neutralizer. So combining them to have a smooth paste and covering your hair in it for half an hour will somehow replicate the Keratin process explained earlier but in a much healthier way. Wash your hair gently right after and enjoy your shinier and sleeker hair.
Milk + Honey Mask
Milk is known as another excellent straightener as it is one of the richest in terms of protein, and refilling the protein reserves in the hair strands, repairs the damaged parts. Mixed with honey, this follows the same mechanics as the last one, but you can keep the mask on for as long as 2 hours before washing.
Coconut oil + Aloe Vera Gel Mask
Coconut oil is a complete package on its own as it is very rich in nutrients and fat to help nurture and soothe the hair and keep it that way. It also helps the external molecules to reach the hair shaft, opening up the way for aloe vera gel. The addition of the aloe vera gel simply enhances hydration and adds its own enzymes to keep your hair straight and soft. Warm up the oil and add aloe vera gel and stir them up. Apply the mixture to your hair and keep it for 40 minutes and wash it.
Is permanent straightening harmful to hair?
There are almost always many disadvantages with In-salon permanent hair straightening methods of all kinds. The most notable side effects that appear after the initial effective period include the breakage of the hair as a result of the change that is forced on the natural molecular form of the hair, resulting in hair that is frizzier and weaker than before the treatment. Dryness, hair splits, scalp itchiness, and hair loss are some of the general consequences of weakening your hair strands by performing chemical alterations to your hair.
Another very important demerit is the inhalation of the chemical gases emitted during the straightening process, triggering certain respiratory reactions and irritations to the skin, nose, and eyes. There could also be a risk of severe conditions appearing with repetitive exposure. The chemically manufactured at-home products carry some if not all the downsides of the salon treatments in terms of weakening the hair strands and toxicity too.
In many cases, permanent hair straightening solutions at home are not free of any downsides either. Without the presence of a professional at the time of the application, there is always a risk of misuse. That is why it is crucially important to follow all the necessary instructions as carefully as possible to avoid damaging your hair. Always make sure to double-check the used ingredients to prevent allergic reactions and apply any tie and band gently and correctly.
Does your hair go back to normal after you straighten it?
Regardless of the method, whatever you do to achieve permanent hair straightening, whether chemical or natural, in-salon or at-home, by a professional or by yourself, only affects as far as the current length of your hair. Your DNA determines your natural hair type, and no straightening treatment can alter that. The effective period can vary with different solutions, but they all turn back to normal after some time. The less chemical the procedure, the shorter the timespan. Using chemical straighteners over and over may alter your current hair to the extent that it would seem as though the curls are gone. However, with the growth of your untouched natural hair, the contrast between a curly top and straighter bottom may seem off-putting. So even in the more extreme transformation cases, a simple haircut and waiting a few months gives you your old curls back.
How long does permanent hair straightening last?
Now that is the million-dollar question. Many variables determine the length of the straightened effect: The hair type, hair growth rate, hair care routines, usual humidity of the day-to-day environment, and of course, the straightening method. As it is extremely difficult to measure such qualities precisely, no one can exactly pinpoint a specific day on your calendar. However, each product, method, or technique has an approximately effective duration that has been figured out by experience. Almost every natural process that does not involve anything chemical lasts for a day or two or until your next shower at best. With other at-home chemical products, you can achieve longer results of up to a month. The longest-running hair straightening methods are known to be in-salon treatments that may last from 3 – 4 months to 6 – 8 months if other factors play by your hand.
If you decided to take matters into the hands of a professional and asked yourself “What are some of the best permanent straightening near me?”, Beautster will present to you the most skilled and experienced stylist around you to help you make the best decision for your permanent hair straightening goals. Just pick your favorite style, and we will book a seat in a great salon to help you discover your next style!