Black woman with long straight hair ina pontail

Taking care of relaxed hair: Our top 5 tips

Learn how to look after your relaxed hair properly. 

Recently had a chemical straightening treatment done on your hair? Or are you thinking about doing it? Then you’ve come to the right place! Getting relaxed hair is a great way to take a break from your natural hair and expand your styling repertoire. It will, however, completely change how you take care of your locks. So, before you take the plunge, get some helpful hints and tips to aid in taking care of your relaxed hair.

Editor’s tips for looking after relaxed hair


1. Seek out a hair professional

When it comes to getting any chemical treatments done on your hair, it’s always best to seek out a trained specialist or hair professional. And while there are DIY kits available, incorrect usage can lead to damaged tresses. So it’s definitely wise to do some research and find a reputable salon where you can get your touch-ups done safely.

2. Reassess your hair care regime

After you’ve had your hair relaxed, you’ll probably need to take a look at what shampoo and conditioner you’re using.

It’s important to gently cleanse relaxed hair, so look out for milder formulas, or hair care systems for coloured or damaged hair. The TRESemmé Keratin Smooth 7 Day Smooth Shampoo and Conditioner (250ml, £5.99 each*) has lower sulphates, so it’s gentle enough for chemically treated hair. You and your tresses can thank us later!

Relaxed hair: young black woman with long straight hair
Relaxed hair: Moisture is important for relaxed hair.

3. Moisturise!

Even at the best of times, black hair is susceptible to dryness, so, as you can imagine, relaxed hair is even more likely to dry out. So it’s time to make hair oils and leave-in conditioners your BFFs – and don’t forget to look out for ultra moisturising oils like African macadamia oil, coconut oil and argan oil in the ingredients list.

The Dove Advanced Hair Series Pure Care Dry Oil Nourishing Treatment (£6.99*) has a lightweight and non-greasy formula, which leaves your hair feeling softer and more supple. Not to mention, you can use it as a pre-shampoo treatment, a moisturiser, or as a daily detangler. It’s basically your relaxed hair’s fairy godmother!

As for leave-in conditioners, we like the practicality of sprays. Our favourites are the TRESemmé Botanique Nourish & Replenish Hydrating Mist (£5,50*) and the TIGI S-Factor Papaya Leave-In Moisture Spray (£16.45*), because not only are they ultra hydrating, they also smell like tropical cocktails. Yum!

4. Turn down the heat

We’re not suggesting you avoid heated styling altogether, but excessive heat + relaxed hair = a recipe for hair disaster! But there are a few simple things that can help limit the damage of heated styling.

Firstly, if you must use heated styling tools, then start by guarding your mane with a heat protectant. The Toni&Guy Prep Heat Protection Mist (£6.99*) helps protect your hair from damage caused by high heat. But if you’re up for it, why not try heat-less hairstyles? Twist-outs and braid-outs work well if you’re after waves and curls. Discover how to create the perfect twist-out!

Relaxed hair: black afro relaxed hair
Relaxed hair: Why not try wrapping your hair with a silk scarf at bedtime to save time?

5. Wrap it up

Try wrapping your relaxed hair with a silk scarf before bedtime. Trust us, this is a trick that the All Things Hair team have picked up along their travels and it works a dream on relaxed hair. Why? Silk is smooth and doesn’t absorb moisture, so your hair won’t dry out as much overnight. And because your hair is neatly tucked away in your silk scarf, it’ll help cut down styling time the next morning, too – which is great news all-round!

So, there you have it, you and your hair can both relax now you know how to properly care for it!

*RRPs are Unilever suggested retail prices only, it is at the discretion of the individual retailers to set the actual price.

Sign up to our newsletter and get exclusive hair care tips and tricks from the experts at All Things Hair.