Moving from relaxed to natural hair can be tricky. For many, this transition can feel impossible.
But going from having relaxed hair to healthy, natural hair can be done with the right steps.
In this article, we share our top tips to follow to make sure the transition is smooth and easy.
Consult A Hair Stylist
Transitioning from relaxed to natural hair can be quite overwhelming and difficult if you are not clear about what your hair needs in the process.
Many people actually don’t know beforehand what kind of treatment their hair is going to need, This is why the best first step might be to see a stylist.
Seeing a professional hairstylist before you make the transition can be exponentially beneficial to you.
A hair stylist can assess your hair and the level of damage it may have experienced. This can help them recommend good products for repairing your hair.
They can also give you tips and advice on styling your hair properly. So, you can avoid damaging your hair further in the process
Stylists can also be helpful for periodical cheek-ups. Transitioning can take a long time, from a few months to a year.
You can visit a stylist to make sure you are taking all the right steps to transition from relaxer to natural hair.
And you stylist can tell you when something is wrong very early on so you can correct it quickly.
Hydrate Your Hair
The next step you will want to follow is to hydrate your hair.
Keeping your hair hydrated as you transition from relaxer to natural hair is vital for its health. Your hair needs moisture for a few reasons.
Firstly, moisture prevents your hair from getting brittle. Dry hair is brittle and this brittleness makes it easy for it to break off.
This would be a problem if you are transitioning from relaxer to natural hair because if your hair keeps breaking, it cannot fully recover.
Moisture is also important because hair moisturizers can also contain important vitamins and nutrients.
When you use a hydrating lotion or you wash your hair with hydrating shampoo, your hair also retains the ingredients of this product along with the water.
This then allows your hair to grow out more quickly and regain its vitality.
In order to make sure your hair gets enough moisture in the transitioning process, it is recommended you wash it frequently enough and use good hydrating products.
When it comes to washing, once every week is a good interval to work with.
Condition Your Hair
This next step to transitioning from relaxer to natural hair might be one you feel tempted to skip but it is very vital. Conditioning your hair is very important for a few reasons.
Hair conditioners are chock full of really important and rich nutrients. Many good hair conditioners contain ingredients like essentials oils, vitamins and natural extracts.
Some good basic ingredients in conditioners are things like jojoba oil, olive oil, avocado andvitamin E.
These ingredients are important because they give your hair the extra strengthening and thickening it needs in order to fully recover from the potential damage of relaxers.
Conditioners penetrate your hair to infuse it with these ingredients so that it fully absorbs them and gains these beneficial properties.
Another thing that conditioners are good for is that they make your hair much softer and malleable for styling.
This is extremely important when you are recovering your hair and transitioning to natural hair.
Because the more stress you can avoid on your hair, the easier it will be for it to grow properly,
Conditioning is definitely a step you want to make sure you follow as regularly as you moisturize and hydrate.
Avoid Heat Treatment
This step in transitioning from relaxer to natural hair is one that many often skip and it ends up setting them back on their journey.
Avoiding heat treatment on your hair is important for making sure it does not acquire any extra damage that makes it harder for it to recover.
One key way that heat damages hair is when you use it to dry your hair after a wash.
Many people like to use hair dryers to dry their hair after washing. And this makes sense because hair dryers are easy and quick to use.
But the heat also thins your hair out more and takes out too much of the moisture.
This causes the hair to become brittle.And brittleness leads to easy breakage and splitting.
Other forms of heat treatment like the use of flat irons in styling can also be dangerous for your hair when you are trying to transition from relaxer to natural hair.
Because the flat iron thins your hair out and can also disturb its curl pattern. So it is best to avoid it.
Avoid Chemical Treatment
The next tip that is vital for transitioning from relaxer to natural hair is to avoid chemical treatment.
When we think of chemical hair treatment we often think of relaxers. Which you would likely not be using anyway when you are transitioning to natural hair.
But chemical treatment also involves other kinds of products. For instance, hair dyes and bleaches.
With hair bleaching, there is a chemical reaction that occurs between the melanin in your hair and the bleach.
The bleach oxidizes the melanin in your hair and this leads to the stripping of color from your hair.
Similarly with hair dye, the developer in the dye removes your previous hair color by reacting with the melanin.
When your hair is in its healthiest, strongest state, these treatments aren’t too damaging.
But if you are transitioning from relaxer, chances your hair is already a little weak from the previous relaxer treatment.
So dying or bleaching it will only further weaken it.
It is best to avoid any such treatment until a point when your hair has completely transitioned and seems strong enough to handle this.
Use Hair Oils
This tip is one that is definitely worth following. Using hair oils is very important when it comes to making a smooth and healthy transition from relaxer to natural hair.
Hair oils promote hair growth, thickening and strengthening.
Essential oils penetrate your hair and they provide it with rich nutrients that it can absorb. These nutrients then help it to grow more quickly and regain its strength.
Some of the best essential oils for your hair can be bought on their own or they can be found as ingredients in other haircare products like shampoos or conditioners.
There are a few key oils you should look out for. For instance Jamaican black castor oil, jojoba oil and olive oil.
Jamaican black castor oil is rich in vitamin E, which makes it really good at strengthening hair and preventing hair loss.
Olive oil has omega 3 acids, which help hair thickening. And jojoba oil has B and E vitamins, which help it strengthen your hair.
Using essentials oils as part of your haircare routine will definitely make your progress in transitioning from relaxer to natural hair much quicker.
This next step in the process to transition from relaxer to natural hair is more of an optional one.
This tip is most important to follow if you do not want to take the previous tip or you want to enhance on the effects of it.
Taking supplements for hair growth and improvement has been proven to be very effective in the process of recovering damaged hair.
Hair supplements are useful because they specifically contain vitamins important for the growth and strengthening of hair.
Supplements that contain vitamins E and B are especially good.
Vitamin E is known for preventing hair loss. This is really good when you are transitioning from relaxer to natural hair because it gives your hair more of a chance to grow out.
With a supplement that combats hair loss, the potentially damaging effects of any hair styling you may do during your transitioning process can be mitigated.
B vitamins on the other hand thicken your hair and also promote fast growth. This is good for quick transitioning to natural hair as well.
Other supplements such as mineral supplements containing zinc or iron have also been known to improve healthy hair growth.
Consider Cutting Your Hair
One good strategy for moving from relaxed to natural hair that some may dread is to cut your hair. But as difficult as this may sound, this is a very effective tip.
Cutting your hair in order to make a smooth transition can be very beneficial.
Cutting your hair allows you to get rid of all the hair that may have been exposed to damage due to the relaxer.
And once you have cut off that hair, you are left with the roots that are unaffected by chemical treatment.
This step is also good to follow because it can give you the feeling that you are really making a change.
When you get rid of all the relaxed hair and you are left only with the roots, you can see the physical change and really feel like you are on a new journey.
And watching your hair regrow completely different can be a great experience.
Transitioning from relaxed to natural hair will also be easier after you cut your hair because for a while, you’ll only have so much hair to manage and take care of.
Trim Your Hair Periodically
This next step is really helpful, especially if the previous step is one you didn’t want to take. Trimming your hair periodically as it grows out can really help mitigate hair damage.
With hair that was previously relaxed, it likely would have experienced a lot of strain, thinning out and dryness.
This means that it likely breaks very easily and experiences a lot of splitting.
It takes a while for hair to recover from this as you transition from relaxed to natural hair. So in the meantime, trimming your hair frequently makes it easier to control this issue.
When you trim your hair, you get rid of any split ends. And you also make it so there is less damaged hair on your head and more hair growing natural from the root.
It is important however that you trim carefully. Because careless hair trimming may only worsen the splitting.
Consulting a stylist about how to trim your hair well or having it done by them may be helpful.
Another great tip for transitioning from relaxed to natural hair is to minimize the amount of styling you do on your hair.
It may be tempting to try out new and intricate hairstyles as your hair grows out.
But if you overdo it, it can cause your hair to experience strain and breakage that will slow down the transition.
The strain on your hair can come about in the process of combing or brushing it. If you do not take good care to brush your hair without force, it can easily be strained and break.
A good tip for combing or brushing your hair as it is transitioning is to do it in sections.
It is also a good idea to finger comb your hair before you go in on it with a comb of brush.
This is helpful becomes it allows you to carefully take out the knots with your fingers before you use a tool that may be more aggressive.
Using styling gels and other products such as anti-frizz and detanglers can also help to make the styling less severe on your hair.
Buy The Right Styling Tools
When it comes to transitioning from relaxed to natural hair, minimizing styling is helpful but so is knowing the best styling tools to use.
It is important that when you comb your hair, you use a wide-toothed comb. This is important because wide-toothed combs minimize the friction your hair is exposed to.
With wide-toothed combs, less hair rubs up against the comb at a time than with fine-toothed combs.
And with less friction, there is less strain on your hair that can lead to damage or breakage.
Similarly, if you are going to use a brush, you need to make sure you use the right kind.
There are brushes that are made specifically for detangling natural hair while minimizing damage to it.
A good detangling brush will make sure that you get all the knots out when you style your hair without exposing it to breakage.
We highly recommend purchasing these tools for your hair transition.
Wear Protective Styles
This tip for transitioning from relaxed to natural hair is especially effective. Wearing protective hairstyles is a great way to help your hair recover for a number of reasons.
Firstly, protective hairstyles allow you to minimize on styling. When your hair is in a protective style, it doesn’t need to be combed or brushed daily.
This will help you prevent your hair from experiencing too much strain and breaking. This is good because then you won’t be set back on your journey moving from relaxed to natural hair.
Wearing protective styles also protects your hair from the elements.
When your hair is exposed to elements like too much sun or humidity, it can suffer some damage.
Humidity can make your hair frizzy which makes it harder to style without straining it and breaking it.
And too much sun can also make your hair more susceptible to breakage. With a good protective style, this can be prevented.
Some good protective styles include braids, twists and locs.
Use The Right Hair Accessories
Good hair accessories can also be really helpful in ensuring a smooth transition from relaxed to natural hair.
Hair accessories can really be useful when you are wearing your hair out or when you are going to sleep.
For daytime, wearing a headscarf is really good for protecting your hair from the elements. This will prevent any potential damage from the sun, humidity or other extreme conditions.
When you go to sleep, wearing a bonnet can also help protect your hair. Especially a silk bonnet.
Silk is a good material because it does not cause any friction to your hair.
So if you move around in the middle of the night, you can be assured your hair isn’t being strained in any way that can cause it to break.
Using silk pillowcases can also be helpful. As well as using silk scrunchies for fastening your hair into any style.
As long as you follow these tips for protecting your hair, you can be assured it will flourish.
Transitioning From Relaxed To Natural Hair, Conclusion
So that’s How to transition from relaxed to natural hair.
Making a successful transition from relaxed to natural hair is not as hard as it seems.
When you have the right information on how to do it, the transition can be easy.
And getting the right tools for the job is just a matter of knowing what they are.
Hopefully by following these steps you achieve the natural hair of your dreams.