As the world moves ever faster, sometimes it helps to slow down and take it easy. While there are many options for relaxation, an ever more popular choice (hair smoothing treatments) for an hour or so away from the pressures of the world is the hair salon.
It’s a simple affair; go inside, chat with your stylist, don’t worry about any of life’s problems, large or small, and come out looking amazing, ready to take on the world. And, as an increasing number of women and men are deciding, their main desire at the hair salon is to have hair that is free of the wild frizz look.
Hair smoothing treatments are the hottest trend in hair salons.
When it comes to hair smoothing treatments, there are many options to be had for silky, smooth, straight hair. So, lets discuss the difference between each type of hair smoothing treatment and which one would be right for your hair type.
Hair Smoothing Treatments: Brazilian Blowout
Brazilian blowout treatments originated in Brazil, and initially contained a level of formaldehyde (the same chemical used to preserve human and animal cadavers for study) that many people found irritating, but straightened hair like nothing else on the market. More recent innovations have come up with treatments that are devoid of formaldehyde or use similar, but less toxic chemicals.
Side Note: According to Osha, “Many keratin-based hair smoothing products contain formaldehyde dissolved in water and other ingredients in the product. Because of the way the formaldehyde reacts in these products, some manufacturers, importers, or distributors might list other names for formaldehyde on product information or might claim that the product is “formaldehyde-free.” Formaldehyde might be listed as methylene glycol, formalin, methylene oxide, paraform, formic aldehyde, methanal, oxomethane, oxymethylene, or CAS Number 50-00-0. All of these are names for formaldehyde under OSHA’s Formaldehyde standard.”
It’s best used on hair that’s been severely damaged or the customer doesn’t want to completely straighten their hair to have just a bit of wave and volume. This treatment lasts ten to twelve weeks.
Best hair type candidate: The Brazilian Blowout is for anyone that has frizzy, damaged or even processed hair. The treatment works on every hair type: frizzy, fine, coarse, curly, perm, extensions or straightened.
Hair Smoothing Treatments: Keratin Straightening
Keratin Straightening uses keratin to fill in damage to hair cuticles for the sake of shinier, stronger and smoother hair. Like the Brazilian blowout treatment, it can contain formaldehyde, which is what makes the hair silky and smooth. Its results are a lot bolder and last longer – in the neighborhood of three to four months.
One thing you must keep in mind is that during the first few days an oxidation methodology is taking place. This process will lock the keratin into your hair. Therefore, you are forbidden from washing or pulling back your hair, lest you leave a permanent mark in your hair as the keratin sets in.
Best hair type candidate: This treatment is best applied to those who have thick, curly, frizzy or coarse hair. It is also good for damaged or chemically treated hair like: colored, relaxed, permed, bleached, or highlighted.
Keratin treatments are not for those with fine, straight or thin hair. However, if this is your hair type, you use the benefits of keratin by using keratin products rather than undergoing the treatment.
Hair Smoothing Treatments: Japanese Hair Straightener
Japanese straightening, also known as thermal reconditioning, is something of an inversion of a perm with long-term results. A fairly harsh treatment, it is also the longest lasting treatment and is an all but divine gift for women and men who want super straight hair with as little frizz as possible.
Due to the constant exposure to chemicals and heat, your hair can become dry and brittle. The Japanese hair straightening process takes approximately three to six hours.
Best hair type candidate: Almost any type of hair works with the Japanese hair straightening treatment, including curly, frizzy and wavy hair. Also, this smoothing treatment works best on women and men who don’t color their hair.
How Does a Keratin Treatment and a Hair Relaxer Match Up?
I wasn’t blessed with the best hair, which is a debate within itself since it depends on what you call “best hair.” We can thank Chris Rock for really opening up that can of worms, but I digress.
I’ve heard so many people say that they wish their hair had a bit of wave to it, and I am here to say that it is not all it is cracked up to be. Yes, my daughters’ hair is curly. But it is also unruly, frizzy and difficult to manage at times. A good friend of mine, Cherie, has nearly identical tresses, and she recently had a keratin treatment and raved about it. That made me think. Which is better – a hair relaxer or a keratin treatment?
I decided to do a little research, and I discovered a few important points.
- A keratin treatment smooths out your hair, removing the frizz and allowing you to style it with less stress. However, it does not change the hair for good; you could allow it to curl, for example, if you wanted.
- However a hair relaxer DOES change the structure of your hair. It makes your locks very straight, although if you want the effect to stay, you generally need a touch-up after about eight weeks.
You can expect a keratin treatment to last about three months, and it should reduce the amount of time you spend blow-drying your hair in half.
So, which is better? It sounds like the two treatments do different things, so it just depends on what you are looking for!
Secret Tips To Keeping Your Hair Looking Fabulous
For starters, most stylists will warn her clients about using shampoos with sodium or sulfates, both of which strip the hair of the keratin these treatments infuse it with. Additionally, below is a simple method for keeping your hair bone straight in between salon visits.
The tip: seal the cuticle by rinsing one’s hair with cold water after shampooing and topping off a blow dry with a shot of cool air. It works every time!