Ethnic hair care: Essential Do's and Don'ts with hair relaxers

Image courtesy of

Posted by & filed under Blog.

Hands up if you or someone you know with ethnic hair, has chemically treated it before… Chances are all, or at least most hands are going up round about now. While relaxing hair is popular within the South African and international society, this does not happen without the risks of breaking, thinning and/or hair loss.

For the most part, it is important to know that relaxing can affect the quality of your hair. If you are sold on relaxing and the look, manageability and textures that come with it, here are the essential Do’s and Don’ts for relaxers. Just in case you are still not sure what all this “hair relaxer” business is, it has to do with using strong chemicals to “straighten” (also known as “relax”) ethnic hair. So now that you are all clued up, let’s get right to the root of it all.


  • Avoid over-processing your hair by sticking to the time guidelines
  • Coat the length of your hair with oil or conditioner to protect your previously relaxed hair from the relaxer
  • Look at the expiry date
  • Apply prefix with Lavender Oil treatment to hairline prior to application
  • Apply Biocomplex with Sandalwood and
  • Apply Neutralizing Shampoo With Camomile Oil to finish off
  • Only apply relaxer to new growth (except if it’s virgin hair that has not been previously relaxed)
  • Support products that consider their carbon footprints and environment
  • Use relaxers from well reputable companies/brands you trust (as opposed to the many harsh, often cheaper products that cannot be scientifically backed up)


  • Wash hair 3-5 days prior to relaxing to help avoid “burning
  • Relax again within 8 weeks
  • Apply relaxer to the edges and nape first
  • Be rough when you detangle your hair (and avoid touching the scalp)
  • Use regular shampoo (you need a neutralising shampoo)
  • Skip conditioning
  • Mix different brands of relaxer during the same application (make sure you have enough before you start)
  • Scratch hair or scalp for a few days after relaxing

Consult your professional hair expert to discuss your concerns, discomforts and “burning” regarding relaxer. In the event that you experience hair loss or would like to discuss hair loss prevention; book your free one-on-one with a consultant from Hair Clinic International without delay.