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Monday, May 17, 2010

How I Went from Relaxing Every 4 Weeks to Relaxing When It Is Actually Necessary

Hey everyone! Happy Monday!

**This post may be of particular interest to beginning stretchers and possibly early transitioners (or those who may be thinking about it!)**

Today, I actually "washed' my twists (not with dry shampoo either) and now I'm sitting here DCing and thinking about my hair journey. It is hard to believe that a little over 2 years ago, I would relax my hair every 4 weeks faithfully. Shocking isn't it!? All because some stylist told me that with my hair type, I needed to. I was young, gullible, and assumed that surely the stylist knew what she was talking about. So I would relax every 4 weeks and over the course of 4 years, my hair broke off--badly. Fast forward to now. It is now May and my last relaxer was in February and I don't plan to relax anytime soon. So how did I go from relaxing 12 times a year to relaxing 3 or 4 times a year?

To help with these long, long ,long stretches, (aside from the constant deep conditioning) I divorced myself from the idea that my hair has to be straight all the time. Annnd....I had to divorce myself from that idea fairly quickly (my hair was so damaged that I couldn't even think about putting a relaxer in until I handled my massive breakage situation). That resulted in my trying curly styles like bantu knot outs and flexirod sets. I found that when your hair is curly, you aren't obsessing about all that new growth that is coming in and how you're going to handle it or how janky you look because your ends are straight and your roots are puffy. It simply doesn't matter because all your hair is curly. Braids and wigs are a big help too because it means that you don't have to directly deal with your hair all the time.

Now when I hit 4 weeks post, 6 weeks post, 10 weeks post, it doesn't even phase me. I just determine what which style will help me best not focus on the new growth that is there! That's progress!


  1. ITA!! I didn't relax every 4 weeks but I usually did every 6-8 weeks. Now I stretch for 16 wks (at least, I try to go even longer) and my hair is soooooo much healthier for it!!

  2. Mine too! I just think it is good advice for anyone who is starting to stretch their relaxers longer. I've found that new growth is only a problem when you think that you absolutely MUST have straight hair. Nowadays, I'm finding that I can go for weeks (12+) before I feel the need to handle the situation lol

  3. how often do you wash your hair in a week to avoid the shedding or breaking for this stretch?

    1. As I point out throughout my blog, I wash and DC my hair weekly. During the stretch, shedding is will shed. I avoid the breakage by a) minimizing manipulation as I get deeper into my stretch and b) making sure my line of demarcation stays moisturized. I minimize manipulation by making sure I only manipulate my hair on wash days. That when all combing and styling happens. I keep my new growth and line of demarcation moisturized by directly applying my DC to the new growth section by section. It takes a little longer but it is worth it.