Best Alternatives to Relaxers for Black Hair

Hair relaxer alternatives

For decades, hair relaxers have been the default choice for individuals seeking to straighten their hair. Through the natural hair movement, more people have started to embrace their natural hair texture.

I love my natural hair, but there are times I get tired of doing the same twist-outs, braid-outs, and puffs. As cost-effective and beneficial as being natural is for my funds and hair health, there’s just no way I would go back to a relaxer. If I knew of a relaxer alternative in the past, I probably wouldn’t have converted my first transition.

Throughout my natural hair journey, I’ve seen women relax their hair due to boredom, reaching a specific hair growth length, not liking their hair type, or lack of a consistent hair regimen. If you’re bored with your natural hair, here are some of the best alternatives to lye relaxers for Black hair.

Straighten Your Hair

The alternative to a hair relaxer I suggest is getting it straightened as it gives you the relaxed look without the use of chemical treatments. Hair shrinkage is real and sometimes you might just miss doing hair flips when walking away or wearing a ponytail. A benefit to having healthy hair is the ability to wear your natural hair texture in curly or straight styles.

I typically blow dry and straighten hair a few times a year and maintain a straight style for 3-4 weeks at a time. Having a straight hair relaxed is also a type of low manipulation style. Whether you’re doing a blowout and straightening on your own with a straightening iron, hot comb, or professionally, make sure to use a heat protectant to minimize heat damage and have a good straight natural hair regimen.

Alternatives to relaxers for black hair + hair relaxer alternatives for black hair
Wearing a straight hair style
alternative to relaxer for black hair

Add Some Color

Funny enough, I STARTED my natural hair journey by coloring it after long term transitioning. Adding color to your natural hair doesn’t always have to be permanent. You can use hair chalks, hair paint wax, temporary hair color spray, or get a hair rinse.

The fun part of being natural these days is “DIY”, but I suggest visiting a professional stylist when thinking about rinses, bleaches, permanent dyes, and other color treatments.

Get a Hair Cut

If your hair is damaged due to breakage or split ends, it may be time for a second “big chop”. These options can range from going completely bald, to getting a low caesar, deva cut, or tapered cut. If you’re not comfortable using scissors or clippers on your own, see a skilled stylist.

alternative to relaxer for black hair + hair relaxer alternatives
deva cut on natural hair

Protective Style

The last alternative to relaxer for black hair I suggest is a protective style. Get some crochet or box braids, a sew-in, or buy a wig. Protective Styles are great alternatives to relaxing hair because they give you a break from doing your hair. It is also a great option for those naturals with Hand In Hair Syndrome.

Just remember to take care of your hair when it’s in a protective style by keeping it moisturized. You should also continue to wear a bonnet or satin pillowcase to protect your hair during bedtime.

alternatives to relaxers for black hair

Related Post: Wearing Crochet Braids as a Protective Style

These relaxer alternatives allow you to embrace your natural hair while maintaining its health and strength. There are numerous ways to achieve a different hairstyle without the use of chemical relaxers. Remember to also prioritize a consistent hair regimen that includes including proper hydration, moisturization, and protection. Embrace the uniqueness of your natural hair and explore these alternatives to enhance its beauty while keeping it healthy and vibrant.

I hope these suggestions of alternatives to relaxers are a helpful source for days you’re bored with your natural hair. Switching up your hairstyles every once in a while without damaging the health of your natural curl pattern not only gives you a new look, it shows the versatility of natural hair. If you found this post useful, pin it for future use and share with your social community.

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