Tempted to Go Back to Relaxed Hair? You Should Read This.


Odds are if you are reading this you are super frustrated with the state of your natural hair. You are tired of the extreme dryness, the breakage and how time consuming your hair has become. What if I told you, you had every right to feel this way?

The truth is relaxed hair in comparison to natural hair is lower maintenance in many respects.

Especially if you are a natural with a kinky-coily hair type you are more likely to agree that your relaxed hair was less work. It takes less time to detangle, on wash day you won’t consume all of your conditioner, styling doesn’t take nearly as long and tangling rarely if ever happens.

See my post: The 4C Hair Struggle is Real, I’ve Been There and I Understand

Hair is great, but no one wants hair to take over their lives.

We have lives outside of hair, we have work, school, kids, significant others, friends, family, social gatherings and overall just more important things to deal with. So it seems like going back to relaxed hair would be the simple solution, right?

It really all depends. I have seen many of relaxed hair bloggers and YouTubers with long healthy relaxed hair so obviously it isn’t impossible to have long healthy relaxed hair. However, many of you (not all) made the change in the first place because your hair wasn’t in the healthiest state. I know some people may have had long healthy relaxed hair and just wanted to try embracing your natural, but many of you are a part of #teamnatural now because you noticed a problem. I must admit the styling and maintenance of my relaxed hair was easier, but I was also working with less hair as well.

This article is not meant to throw shade at relaxed ladies or discourage you from getting a relaxer if that’s what you really want. It is meant to give you information so you can make your own decision, so take from it what you will.

If you are going through some tough times with your hair, I know it may not seem like it, but relaxed hair is weaker than natural hair because of the chemical process used to break down the protein bonds.

So if your goal is long hair, then relaxed hair is still work!

When you are relaxed if your goal is longer hair the same practices that are used to grow natural hair apply. You should moisturize daily, use heat very sparingly, and protective styles are still a good idea. Sound familiar?

If you hair is relaxed or permanently colored protein treatments are no longer optional they are a necessity and you should deep condition more often.

NaturallyCurly, did a great article about this, which can be read here.

afro textured hair care

You know why? Afro-textured hair is afro-textured hair regardless if it is chemically processed or not, so the same care for length retention is required.

Now if your goal isn’t length, this may not be of concern to you. However, if it is you can go back to relaxed hair and essentially be back where you started. Of course there are exceptions to the rule and some women do not have to work as hard to have long healthy relaxed hair, but for many of us this just isn’t so.

Would you ever go back to a relaxer? What was your relaxer experience like?


29 thoughts on “Tempted to Go Back to Relaxed Hair? You Should Read This.”

  1. I loathe relaxed hair for myself. I’ve seen it work out for others, but not for me. I’ve also seen it NOT work out for people, other than myself.
    For me (and some others), my relaxed hair was dry and sparse. Long strands were just that…STRANDS with no volume or life. The hair looked contrived…like it was trying to be something it was not. For me, I was like: I can have relaxed hair that looks bad, or natural hair that might look bad, but at least it is not contrived. I went for the latter. For me it was pathetic to turn to chemicals, to break down the natural structure of my hair, to make it something it was not, and the result was not even better….just different. With relaxed hair, it was a never ending cycle of: Dealing with new growth, and getting touch ups, and dealing with the contrast between the natural growth and the still relaxed ends….arrrrgggg it was just short of torture.

    With natural hair, I have more versatility. I can opt to have it blown out and/or flat ironed and mimic the look of relaxed hair if I want. Or just leave it curly, or naturally stretch it for that in-between look. And my hair looks full and the length is genuine and not contrived.

  2. Aisha Umar Ya'u

    I have already texlaxed my hair and am loving it! The volume of my hair is the same as the one I had on my blown out natural hair ( I had it for two years).
    Being a Muslim, I couldn’t wear a wig as protective style, nor could I rock the big fro due to my hijab. I was always having headache for pulling my hair tight into a bun.
    I however, don’t regret ever going natural because it had taught me things about my hair I otherwise wouldn’t have known.
    My hair is now easier to manage and have grown longer. In the last seven months I used a relaxer on my hair, I haven’t used heat once! As opposed to when I was natural, I was always running to the saloon (monthly), but now I find caring for a texlaxed hair is easy.
    I still do all the things I did to my natural hair (sans heat ofcourse).

  3. Priscilla E Herndon

    I’ve worn my own natural hair for about 6 years now. I transitioned from relaxed hair then. I wear wigs with my Natural hair in braids and or twists when I get bored with wearing the same style. It is short but growing out longer. I’m not getting it cut so much and I’m taking biotin and drinking a lot of water. My problem is dryness. I’ve been having my hair colored due to the gray. My beautician recommends using a humidifier in my home and drinking more water. I also will invest in a hair steamer and continue using a protein conditioner every two weeks instead of once a month, like previously.

    1. I went natural because of shedding hair, but as a natural it seems I shed even more hair. I have 4B hair and I am extremely tender headed. I died my hair now for graying reasons. Everytime I do my hair it takes all day. I am not a person who takes a lot of time with hair, so I find my self wearing styles that may pull breaking off the hair even more. I have already begun looking into salons to relax and cut the hair. In my house is very product that exist, and I am just tired of looking at this huge fro sitting on my table instead of being in my hair (fro every time I do my hair).

    2. Tiffany Porterfield

      I struggled with dryness until I realized that natural black hair, or at least my hair needed WAY more moisture than I was thinking. I ADDITION to what you’re already doing, Try this: mix olive oil (or other essential oil) and a leave in conditioner in a tipped bottle and just DRENCH your braids/twists under your wig. To the point of total saturation. Do it 2-3 times a week. During the super dry winter months I even did it every day. My dryness issue disappeared. My hair began to grow rapidly. It was a major epiphany moment for me and I wish I could SCREAM to all the natural ladies that we are NOT ADDING ENOUGH MOISTURE TO OUR HAIR and that is why we have damaged, dry brittle hair that we have to continuously cut and can’t retain the length. My hair was a notch above my shoulders; now it is currently below my bra strap. Please try this! I’m telling you your hair will greatly appreciate it 🙂

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