Beyond having a penchant for relaxers with double-barrel names, one cannot easily decipher why the first choice of most women is a no-lye formula as the agent to be used to straighten hair. Popularly called ‘kit-relaxer’ locally, its main attraction would be the fact that the kit contains all you generally need to achieve good straightening without killing your hair.

Some salons tend to think they can do without the Neutralizing shampoo which aids the complete removal of the chemical product from the hair. Heaven help you if you do not carry your own bottle; it may mean that the chemical agent is unsatisfactorily cleansed and traces of it will remain in the hair. It will be only a matter of time before reactions set in, culminating in hair breakage at best and total hair loss at worst.

The No-lye formula seems to be the natural choice for those who believe that they have sensitive scalps. Never mind that every woman actually thinks her scalp is especially sensitive! The truth is that every adverse reaction to any hairdressing procedure, whether chemical or not, is explained away as a consequence of ‘sensitivity’. Most of the time, the client’s sensitivity is overrated.

It is very rare for me to use a No-lye formula to touch-up hair; the other formula which is sodium-based, tends to be more sympathetic to our hair’s needs. The challenge with the kit is in achieving complete cleansing, without leaving any traces of chemical product anywhere on the head. Although all kits come with shampoo, conditioner and a leave-in treatment, these products have been known not to get rid of everything.

Kit creams often contain a calcium-based straightening agent, and it could be difficult to expunge. Only some manufacturers bother to incorporate a de-calcifying agent into their Neutralizing shampoo. Hence, most hair that is straightened with the kit formula, tend to be stiff, immobile and not likely to shine. You need a triple dose of leave-in conditioners and some serious light oils to get a semblance of movement from the hair.

The work required to make the hair fluid, defeats the purpose of using the product. I have found generally that the so-called sensitive scalps do not need to burn with the other Relaxers, if the client pays attention to detail. Since you know it is sensitive, you must plan ahead so that you can space out visits to the salon, without torturing your scalp.

If you do want to stick with the kit, please do a post-perm deep conditioning treatment to counter the extra-drying effect of the Kit formula. Wrap hair with foil paper and cling-film for great absorption. Complete conditioning with a combination of leave-in conditioners, to battle further dryness as you go under the dryer. h to quench the thirst of the scalp, before rolling and drying.

Thanks for reading and do make it a great week!

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