What To Do When Relaxer Temptation Strikes

Very frustrated and angry woman pulling her natural hair

If you have been natural or transitioning for any length of time, the temptation to relax your hair will probably have presented itself. First of all, don’t be alarmed, it happens to most of us at some point in our natural hair journey particularly if you had been relaxed for quite a number of years beforehand. Old habits die hard.

It’s like you have grown up being told that the world is flat and suddenly you are told that world is in fact round. By going natural you will have had to adjust your entire outlook on life and how you view yourself and even after accepting this, some of your old belief systems will kick in especially in times of stress.

You are not ‘betraying the sisterhood’ by your thoughts but don’t act on a whim, before you give in to relaxer temptation take a step back and do the following:

Remember your reasons for going natural or transitioning in the first place

You may have been frustrated with your constantly breaking hair when you were relaxed or you aspired to live a more natural life free of chemicals. Whatever your reasons were for choosing natural hair, chances are those reasons are still valid now so by backtracking, you will be undoing all your good work so far, there is light at the end of the tunnel.

Take a step back from your hair


Frustration can lead to rash decisions so take a step back from dealing with your hair until your head is in the right place. Slap on a wig, weave, braids or whatever you need to do so you don’t have to deal with your hair for a few weeks. Chances are once the stress subsides, you will remember how much you actually love your natural hair!

Re-learn natural hair care

Most people who have gone back to relaxing after having been natural or transitioned for a while will tell you exactly why they decided to give up on their natural journey and it usually involves frustration with texture, styling or a combination of the two.

If this is you, re-learn the art of black hair care. If you have a favorite blogger or vlogger, immerse yourself into their hair care tips and advice and soon the darkness will lift. You can do this!

 Pretend relaxers had never been invented

My daughter is growing up in a world of 24 hour entertainment so she will probably never understand the pleasure that her mum got as a child from early Saturday morning cartoons (remember He-man?). As difficult as it is to fathom, there was a time before relaxers and people then just dealt with their hair as it grew. The idea of natural hair didn’t even exist, they just called it hair. So suck it up and get on with it.

Write a pros and cons list

Ah, the list is an old psychology standby but it’s very effective. By now you probably know the amount of work and effort it takes to grow black hair long weather relaxed or natural, I’m sure you’ve watched more than a few relaxed Youtubers so you are familiar with what a good relaxed regimen looks like.

Do you honestly think that it will be any easier to look after relaxed hair? Are you willing to take hours of trial and error to learn the skill of roller setting your hair straight? Relaxed hair may be marginally easier to comb through than natural hair but combing is not the only part of a regimen. In fact all things considered, in regards to the ease of a natural or a relaxed hair regimen, it’s a wash.

If you temptation to relax does not stem from a place of stress and you are genuinely making a well thought out decision wear your hair in a different texture for styling reasons, then by all means go ahead and relax your hair and enjoy your new journey!

Originally posted 2012-11-21 11:45:11.

About Alma Ruddock


I’m Alma Ruddock, the founder and editor-in-chief of Blackhairinformation.com. I stumbled on a hair care forum back in 2008 frustrated with my breaking relaxed hair and the information that I found there changed the fate of my hair, and quite possibly my life, forever! I immediately started to transition to natural hair and started BlackHairInformation.com as a way to help both myself and other women of color achieve their dreams of long healthy hair. I have now achieved my goal length and I continue to help others achieve their dreams too. My three passions are hair, art and entrepreneurship and I love to be able to bring my unique view on hair growth and successful hair journeys to our readers. I am an eternal optimist and workaholic. In addition to BHI I have founded quite a few other websites and businesses including Elongtress Hair Vitamins and Urban Gyal which all fall under the umbrella of my company Coils Media Ltd.

About Alma Ruddock


I’m Alma Ruddock, the founder and editor-in-chief of Blackhairinformation.com. I stumbled on a hair care forum back in 2008 frustrated with my breaking relaxed hair and the information that I found there changed the fate of my hair, and quite possibly my life, forever! I immediately started to transition to natural hair and started BlackHairInformation.com as a way to help both myself and other women of color achieve their dreams of long healthy hair. I have now achieved my goal length and I continue to help others achieve their dreams too. My three passions are hair, art and entrepreneurship and I love to be able to bring my unique view on hair growth and successful hair journeys to our readers. I am an eternal optimist and workaholic. In addition to BHI I have founded quite a few other websites and businesses including Elongtress Hair Vitamins and Urban Gyal which all fall under the umbrella of my company Coils Media Ltd.

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Comments

  1. Amber McElroy

    I just wear weaves, like micro braids, box braids or a sew in If I’m feeling likei want a relaxer lol

  2. Monique Wilson
    Monique Wilson

    I remember that your not supposed to use them while pregnant and that is why God made the Chi that works for me….

  3. Monique Wilson
    Monique Wilson

    They have the dual brilliance to where you can control the heat…. but to me chis are everything…. but to each is own….

  4. Vee

    When my friend felt the urge, I told her to go get a high quality straight/wavy wig. Anytime you feel that urge, slap the wig on, and you got the straight look w/o the chem.

  5. Diana White
    Diana White

    I got frustrated several months ago tryn to let my perm grow out and gv in to relaxing my new growth:(
    Regret it:( especially after my daughter threatened me not to do it:/ and I still hvnt told her I did it…but, I plan on holding out this time.

    1. Yasmeen Wright
      Yasmeen Wright

      Really. Its so damaging and not worth the time and effort putting into taking care of your hair.

  6. Erica Heningburg Hall
    Erica Heningburg Hall

    Sometimes we make decisions based on being frustrated at the time. Keep in mine your frustration won’t last. I know, I have had plenty days. Its just like food, if you are trying to lose weight the craving is momentary. If you are natural that’s incredible in it self. Everyone can’t do it. Granted you are one of the one’s stay strong and ask God to help you. Even if you have to wig it, hat it, braid it. Don’t give in to someone telling you to get a relaxer when they certainly aren’t walking in your shoes. Be Blessed Natural Ladies :- )

  7. Sammie Time
    Sammie Time

    I’ve been temped cause I would like to see length, I’ve been natural for over a year now, but I’m scared of what might happen afterwards, since I’ve been natural for over a year now.

  8. Enez Laurendine

    When I get that urge I put in a protective style right away!! I will throw 2 goddess braids in my hair real quick and lay my edges!

  9. VJ RLester

    I’m 6 months in and I keep a sew in so I don’t get the urge. I got tired of my edges thinning every time I got a touchup. Never going back.

  10. Jenny JackJack

    When you get the urge to relax… Go get a relaxer ! It’s just hair so you can wear it however you want ! Nobody’s obligated to staying natural forever.

    1. Jenny JackJack

      Make sure that you have a good regimen and quality products picked out ahead of time. Relaxed hair can easily grow long and strong when it’s taken care of.

    2. Rivian Jones

      I do my routine for my relaxed hair is fairly low maintenance and my secret weapon is a hooded dryer. I’m going to go to my stylist atleast once a month to cut my ends and etc.

    3. Rivian Jones

      I need to take notes from you Jenny JackJack your hair is beautiful! How did you get that length?

    4. Jenny JackJack

      I’ll send you my regimen in your inbox. Plus I’m going to send you the link to our group on fb. There are tons of healthy relaxed heads in it to learn from. We all have similar regimens and the product recommendations are great ! Hold on!

    5. Sharon Emile-Amazigo

      Yes its just hair I was natural for almost a year. But I want something easy for a while so relaxed it last week. I will go back when I feel the time is right. I have 3 natural girls to take care of. I am not my hair.

    6. Izaiahs-Mom Denise

      Me too. I just texlaxed my hair last weekend. It came out a bit straighter then I wanted, but really, it’s just hair. No big deal to cut it short and start again.

    7. Kimbo Jones

      Lol these comments though, I’m natural I will never go back for personal reason but never have I discouraged another person about their hair. There is no point, first its not my business, two most people keep their hair in protective styles anyway.( braids or quick weaves, etc) I think what gets naturals is they strictly don’t use any heat or chemicals in their head. I live by that rule again for personal reasons but I don’t care what you call yourself natural or relaxed neither of those terms are a permanent way of life unless you make it

    8. Kyri Ward

      I am soooooooo thinking about allowing my 15 year old to get relaxed because her hair is very thick although I press and style it she Does Not enjoy the the natural world.

    9. Rivian Jones

      Marsee Hunter You need to research the one study that was done because a lot of variations of the study were not done. Also do your own research before misinforming others please. The study was only done on a very small group I’m not going to go into detail but it wasn’t enough evidence to say perms lead to cervical cancer not breast cancer lmao. #Youtriedit

  11. Renee A M Reives

    Gave in. I had no clue what I was doing when I first cut my hair and college interfered with me even trying to figure out my hair. Not that i didn’t try or don’t love myself, I’m just inept when it comes to my hair. Plus, the struggle of figuring out my hair paralleled my college years and the struggle. Yet, it’s not for everyone.

    1. Renee A M Reives

      I’m in my feelings right now. And honestly, I have heard of women with perms and weaves being asked why they’re not natural, as if they have to be. Just explaining my own feelings.

    2. Missus-Emme Bison

      It is your hair and you should do as you see fit. I love that the natural hair thing has allowed women to consider their natural hair texture as an option and not forbidden, but I really wish there was a movement that would encourage people to stop policing Black women about their hair. I think it’s possible to acknowledge and understand the history and implications regarding Black women’s hair and the various styles and still make a choice on how you choose to wear your own hair. And I say all this, as someone who is natural (as in no perms…I love hair dye, though 😉

    1. Dellasie Cocoa Aning

      This statement drives me up the wall. It’s like saying “the way God set you up doesn’t work for you but these chemicals will”

    2. Michelle Williams

      I don’t care if it drives you up the wall in through the chimney.Everybody can’t wear a natural.Please leave God out of this one.God is working for me just fine.Am using the opinions and choices that he gave us.

    3. Marilyn Williams

      God is love! Straight hair or natural hair! Fake nails or real nails, colored hair or natural hair color….

    4. Michelle Williams

      God wanted me to make my own choices as well.And to respect other’s.Now stop being natural hair militants please.

    5. Jenny JackJack

      It’s the truth lol. Talking about God wants you with textured hair in his image …. Ok I guess God wore weave too lol.

    6. Michelle Williams

      Women should be able to wear they hair however they see fit.Without being judged or bullied on by the next sista.Truth is I if you don’t take care of you’re hair it’s falling out anyway.I have seen naturals that was unhealthy and breaking off.But also I have seen naturals that was healthy.The same goes for relaxed hair.So bottom line just take care of you’re hair.

    7. Jenny JackJack

      Hair bullies are so annoying! I look natural, but I’ve had a relaxer for 22 years. My hair is not relaxed straight and has tons of texture in it. It’s super long and thick because I take care of it. Easy to maintain too.

    8. Michelle Williams

      Right..That’s the key taking care of you’re hair.Jenny you’re hair is beautiful and looks very healthy.

  12. Khadijah Gray

    Omgggg I have that urge now!! Protective Styles are expensive when you do know how to do it yourself. Usually my mother will throw in a perm & I’ll be able to straighten it & put it in a style but having natural hair is really a process

    1. Courtney Gray

      They r cheap. U just be buying the good stuff. Get u that 7 dollar as i am co wash and buy u some 4 dollar tresemme naturals conditioner and some 3 dollar eco styler gel. 11 dollars total for 3 products can’t beat that.

  13. Kristen Nicole Thompson

    I have been natural now for two years and im considering a perm. I can never get my bantu knots right or my flat twist and it takes to long of my time when i had a perm my bantus where perfect and less maintenance for me i havent found my natural side yet i guess!!

    1. Serita Sullivan-Graham

      Me too. I’ve been natural for the same amount of time and it’s been so hard to style, so I usually end up just putting a wig on. I’m allergic to synthetic hair (even after the vinegar wash), so braids aren’t a good idea for me. I’m done. I’m getting a texturizer on Monday.

    2. Kimbo Jones

      Mine stop looking right as it got longer so I switch too flat twist, but I also keep my hair either twisted or braided.

  14. Rivian Jones

    I’m getting a perm! Natural hair requires more maintenance then my permed hair did. Natural hair maintenance isn’t for me period.

  15. Marjorie Brown

    Sometimes the urge strikes because of shrinkage. When I feel like that I either color it or rotate hair products because my hair gets used to it and may need a change.

  16. Jamila Kelly

    when I get the urge 7 months in. ..I work really hard at my job so I can have some extra money to do it XD
    only reason I was not getting it done is because I’m broke :/ and honestly it’s doing more harm than good !. I don’t have the time or patience needed to learn to do the complete opposite of what I’ve been doing for almost twenty years. I say, do what you want. it’s hair and if going natural is a life goal I honestly think you should reevaluate your life goals a little xx;

  17. Marion Hinds-Brown

    Love my hair natural. Easy to maintain. Simply plait it before going to bed. Unpick it in the morning. Straight up bun, or tied back in a pony tail, or part down the middle or side, and 2 cornrows and am good to go..

  18. Blaque Diamondz

    Cut my hair short and this puffy cottony hair is irking me. Been relaxer free 15 years but I can’t do this kinky hair especially short. I want a texturizer

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