The main take home message from the videos is her definition of heat training which is that is it a process of gradually loosening the texture of your hair.
On the other hand she says that using really high heat to straighten e.g. very hot comb/marcel which leaves your hair fried and breaking is heat damage. A very subtle difference but a difference all the same.
Let’s be honest here for a minute, just like choosing to texlax or texturize your hair instead of relaxing it bone straight, heat training is just an alternative way of dealing with natural hair to make it more ‘manageable’ or for some, to avoid knotting hence retaining length.
All these methods are ‘controlled damage’ to some extent in order to achieve a result but they are damage all the same. The difference mainly lies in the type of bonds being broken. There are four bonds in your hair which are peptide, disulfide, salt and hydrogen bonds.
► Peptide bond: This is the strongest bond and does not get altered even during normal salon processes e.g. relaxers, perms or colour. This is the bond that makes up the structure of your hair and when your hair becomes weak the bond breaks.
► Disulfide bond: Also known as a sulfur* bond, it is the second strongest bond in you hair and this bond is not affected by heat or water. This is the bond that gets altered by salon chemical action on your hair. A relaxer will break the bonds then rearrange them to the hair’s new shape.
► Salt bond: This bond is slightly less resistant than the disulfide bond and is affected by changes to pH making your hair swell and lift the cuticle. This is the gist of what happens when you color your hair. The cuticle is lifted by the pH of your chemical to allow it to penetrate the cortex and deposit or remove color.
► Hydrogen bond: This is the weakest bond in your hair and is easily changed by water or heat temporarily. This is why you can set wet hair in rollers and your hair will take on the new shape when you remove them and by the same token you can also either curl or straighten your hair with a heated styling tool.
So now we know that a relaxer/texturizer will change the second strongest bond in your hair and that explains why relaxed hair is weaker than virgin natural hair. However we also know that the disulfide bond is not changed by heat so which bond is being affected during heat training?