Do you have relaxed hair that looks a bit thin? Are you looking for ways to make it fuller and healthier? Relaxing your hair can significantly affect its overall health as it becomes more prone to breakage and thinning than natural hair. But with the right tips and products, relaxed hair can be beautiful and healthy – it just takes a little bit of effort! This article will discuss 13 of the best tips to thicken relaxed hair and achieve your desired mane.
1. Stretch relaxers to 10-12 weeks
When relaxing your hair, you want to have more than one inch of untreated hair to prevent overprocessing or overlapping treatments. Stretching your relaxers to every 10-12 weeks allows your hair to grow longer, develop thickness, and become healthier overall.
If you’re starting to relax your hair, consider a few things when choosing a relaxer. The two main types of relaxers are lye-based and ones with no lye. Lye-based relaxers have a higher pH balance which breaks the bonds of your hair down faster. While it can cause more scalp irritation, the shorter processing time allows you to keep it on your hair for less time. Make sure you use scalp protection when using a lye-based relaxer.
A non-lye-based relaxer causes less scalp irritation but typically contributes to dryer hair due to the potential for calcium buildup in the hair. But if you struggle with sensitive skin, this option would probably work better for you. Make sure you follow the instructions that come with the relaxer to prevent over-processing.
2. Protect previously relaxed hair while relaxing
To prevent relaxer runoff from over-processing your hair, coat it in a thick oil (such as olive oil) or a petroleum-based product. Not protecting your already processed hair can cause your hair to be limp and dry and even lead to breakage if you’re not careful.
If you go to a salon to have your hair relaxed, make sure your stylist adequately protects your hair.
3. Avoid relaxing hair until it’s bone straight
When relaxing your hair, your relaxer is actively breaking down the bonds in your hair. If you use the right relaxer and follow the directions, your hair will still be healthy and thick.
Having bone straight hair is not a healthy way to relax your hair. It results from leaving your relaxer in for as long as possible before washing it out. Your hair will be more likely to break, and it also doesn’t stay styled for long. It’s overall just not a great way to treat your hair.
So make sure you leave just a little texture in your newly processed hair, so it stays beautiful and healthy!
4. Use light protein treatments & bond builders
If you notice long strands falling from your scalp, this suggests that your hair lacks elasticity. A protein treatment help treat damaged hair, preventing frizziness. A light protein treatment looks like a typical hair mask and should usually be applied with every wash, increasing the time between treatments if you notice your hair is beginning to feel stiff.
If you have a protein sensitivity, consider using a protein-moisture treatment instead.
You can also use bond builders. This treatment repairs broken hydrogen bonds in your hair strands, restoring lost protein and overall strengthening your hair. Depending on how damaged your hair is, you can apply bond-building treatment anywhere from once a week to 2 or 3 times a week.
Using one of these products is an excellent treatment for hair that could use a little revitalization.
5. Avoid direct heat to thicken relaxed hair
Using curling irons or hair dryers will (obviously) dry your hair out. If you’ve noticed recent damage to your hair despite using the previous tips, your heat styling routine may be causing it.
To combat this heat damage, the only thing you can do is stop using curling irons, flat irons, or hair dryers. Instead, air dry your hair and style your hair in ways that don’t require heat.
You’ll likely find that your hair holds moisture better, has little to no significant breakage and is thicker overall.
6. Deep condition weekly
Deep conditioning is probably one of the essential steps to keeping your hair healthy. Deep conditioning increases the elasticity in your hair, giving it that ‘bounce’ that’s oh so beautiful! Using a deep conditioner weekly will smooth down and strengthen your hair cuticles.
You should leave deep conditioners on the hair for 20-30 minutes, but if your hair is super dry, you can also choose to leave it in overnight. But make sure you use a heat source to improve its effectiveness, such as a hooded dryer or steamer.
If your hair stretches a lot before eventually breaking off, you should consider a protein conditioner. If it’s brittle and breaks off when you apply any tension to it, you should consider a moisturizing conditioner.
Consider alternating between a protein and moisturizing conditioner to keep a healthy balance between both.
7. Keep up with trims
Trimming the ends of your hair helps promote healthy growth by getting rid of split ends or heat damage, preventing knotting, and making hair overall look thicker and easier to style.
How often you should trim your hair typically varies from person to person. But if you’re looking for a starting point, try getting a trim every four months.
Creating a hair-trim routine is a great way to get rid of any damaged hair and allow it to be the best possible version of itself.
8. Moisturize & seal at night
Your nighttime hair routine is just as important as what you do during the day. Cover your hair (or use a satin pillowcase) to prevent friction or excess moisture absorption.
Put some leave-in conditioner in your hair to further keep your hair moisturized. Then apply hair oil or serum to seal the moisture in your hair.
Neglecting your nightly hair care routine can lead to unnecessary tangling or breakage that you could easily prevent, so don’t slack off just because it’s late in the day!
9. Choose a low manipulation hairstyle
A low manipulation style is a style that doesn’t require you to touch your hair a lot. These styles don’t involve heat styling or a lot of tension, giving your hair a break from heavy styling. These hairstyles typically include buns, Bantu knots, and braids. You can even wear a wig to explore different styles and eliminate excess strain on your hair.
You can also choose protective hairstyles such as box braids to prevent exposure to damaging effects from the sun or cold weather.
Overall, choosing a style that keeps your hair safe from the elements can further prevent damage and thicken your hair, encouraging growth.
10. Improve your overall health
Nutrient imbalances or iron deficiencies can affect your hair health. If you’re taking iron and getting your recommended nutrients, but you still don’t feel good, consider getting your iron and hemoglobin levels checked.
Exercise can also encourage hair growth by increasing oxygen and blood flow through the body, including the scalp. Try doing about 30 minutes of cardio three times a week to help encourage proper blood flow.
Stress can also affect the health of your hair. High stress can cause hair loss, so try to relax often to help keep your hair healthy.
11. Use castor oil to thicken relaxed hair
If you struggle with a dry scalp, try using some castor oil to introduce extra moisture. You can either apply the oil directly to your scalp (or the ends of your hair) or by mixing it in with your conditioner.
Overall, castor oil can introduce a lot of moisture into your hair to help prevent dry hair, breakage, and tangling. It’ll also help your hair grow thicker and be healthier as a result.
12. Use coconut as a pre-poo
Applying shampoo can strip your hair, especially if you use a brand with sulphates. To help negate the adverse effects on your hair, consider a pre-poo treatment. A coconut oil pre-poo is an excellent option because it gets into the hair shaft and prevents protein loss.
A pre-poo treatment is an excellent addition to your hair care routine since it can help moisturize your hair, soften any dirt or grime you’ve accumulated through the day, and prevent tangling.
13. Try henna treatments
Henna is another excellent way to thicken relaxed hair. It has been used to dye and treat hair for the past 8000 years!
The dye is created by turning the plant’s leaves into a powder. This powder will look green in colour. While this might be a bit off-putting at first glance, henna dyes a red colour.
Henna helps your hair by binding with the molecules in your hair shaft, leading to thicker, shinier, and smoother hair.
You can typically apply henna to your hair every 4-6 weeks, and as you layer henna treatments, your hair will normally appear darker over time.
There you have it! 13 tips to thicken relaxed hair for a fuller, healthier mane. Implementing even just a few of these tips can make a world of difference for your hair health. So what are you waiting for? Get started today and enjoy the results! Until next time! Thank you for reading.