Can a Relaxer Be Put Over a Texturizer?

Doubling up with texturizer and relaxer usually isn't good for your hair health.

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Sometimes beauties find that using a texturizer on their hair successfully tones down wild curls or puffy strands, making hair more manageable. Once you've gone the texturizer route, you can either go back to your natural curl or move toward relaxing your mane. Relaxing is very similar to texturizing but completely straightens the hair. It can be possible to put relaxer over texturizer but only if the chemicals are compatible and your hair is healthy enough to take the added processing.

Understanding the Chemicals

As explained by My Black Hair Salons, texturizers and relaxers are basically the same thing; texturizers are just milder. They use the exact same chemicals, usually either sodium hydroxide or calcium hydroxide. These chemicals break down the bonds in your hair to make it less curly. Stylists are able to get different results with texturizers and relaxers because they do not leave texturizers on as long as they do relaxers. They also don't comb the hair completely straight with texturizers, as the purpose is to leave some loose wave in the hair instead of remove all the shape. Because texturizers and relaxers are essentially the same thing, as long as your relaxer has the same chemical foundation as your texturizer, you should be able to avoid adverse chemical reactions. If you use incompatible chemicals, however, you potentially could chemically burn off your strands, so your stylist absolutely has to know what kind of texturizer you used.


Even though it technically might be chemically possible to put a relaxer over a texturizer, doing so means you double-process your hair, or go through a chemical procedure on the strands twice. Every time you do any sort of chemical processing, you inevitably cause some damage to your locks. If you texturize, your hair is already somewhat damaged from the sodium hydroxide or calcium hydroxide. Putting relaxer on top of the texturizer just compounds the problem. The result can be dry and brittle strands that snap easily and that lack any sort of shine. In the worst-case scenario, this can translate to seriously thinned hair that is almost impossible to style, which is hardly the goal beauties usually aim for.

The Ideal Option

Because putting a relaxer over a texturizer can leave your hair seriously damaged and weak even when the chemicals are identical, as yucky as it is, ideally, you should wait until your texturized hair grows out before you reach for the relaxer. This way, you apply the relaxer to virgin (never-treated) hair and likely will get a much more consistent, less-damaging result. How long this takes depends on how fast your hair grows and how short you want your hair to be when you relax it, but you're probably looking at waiting at least a few months. Gentle styling options such as steam-based straighteners can help you get straighter locks until enough time has passed.

The So-So Option

Stylists generally are okay with doing multiple chemical treatments on hair, but they're careful to texturize and relax hair only when the hair is healthy enough to be worked with. Your salon most likely will tell you that you have to wait at least a week or two between processes to give your hair a chance to fully set from the texturizing. This time also gives you the opportunity to use conditioning treatments to restore the moisture to your hair and repair some of the damage the chemicals did. The longer you can go between the texturizer and relaxer, the better shape your hair will be in.

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