How to Mix Oil With Your Relaxer

Natural oils help to keep your relaxed tresses healthy.

Photo: Jack Hollingsworth/Digital Vision/Getty Images

Let's face it, relaxer treatments are always scary, even if you've been using them to get hair swings and flows for years. It takes only one small mistake to burn your scalp like fire and leave you close to bald. Most relaxers these days have some conditioning ingredients like shea butter, olive oil or argan oil to keep relaxers from stripping out your strands and leaving them brittle. When you add extra oil, it makes the straightening process gentler on your tresses.

1.

Empty the contents of your relaxer cream into a medium glass bowl. Most no-lye relaxer kits include a cream base and a liquid activator. Add the liquid activator to the no-lye cream base and blend it thoroughly with a wooden spatula. If your no-lye relaxer instructions say your cream should change color when it's completely blended, then keep mixing till the color is exactly as described. If you're using a lye relaxer cream that came in a single jar, you won't need to mix anything, so empty the cream into the glass bowl.

2.

Pour the oil into a measuring cup. Melt solid oils like coconut oil or shea butter in the microwave to turn them to liquid. It takes only a few seconds to melt solid oils in the microwave. Allow melted oils to cool to room temperature; double-check this by touching them with your fingertip before you add them to a relaxer.

3.

Add the oil slowly with your relaxer cream. Stir well until the oil is completely blended with the relaxer. The texture of your souped-up relaxer should still be thick enough to apply to your strands without running. Relaxer that runs onto your neck and ears can burn and leave you in a world of hurt, so stop adding oil just before it gets runny. If you have a little oil left over, use it in your hair after you're finished with the relaxer process.

4.

Divide your hair into four sections and start applying the relaxer. If you're relaxing a full head of virgin hair that's never been chemically processed, you'll be working the relaxer through your strands from roots to ends. If you're doing a relaxer touch-up, apply the relaxer cream to your unprocessed new growth with your fingers, a dye brush or the back of a small comb.

5.

Rinse out the relaxer well. Shampoo your hair well with a neutralizing conditioner to stop the relaxer process and follow up with a moisturizing deep conditioner. Then whip out your flat iron or your curlers, style your silky tresses and go.

Things You'll Need

 

1.Lye or no-lye relaxer kit

3.Measuring cup

5.Gloves

7.Dye brush (optional)

2.Glass bowl

4.Wooden spatula

6.1/2 cup natural oil

8.Small comb (optional)

 

Tips & Tricks

 

You can mix into the relaxer any natural oil that you normally use on your relaxed tresses.

Added oil slows down your relaxer, so this buys you a few more minutes of time when you relax your hair. But don't get careless. Even with the added oil, never leave the relaxer in for longer than the amount of time your relaxer recommends for your hair type, or you could end up with a hair disaster.

 

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