African American women are usually gifted with thick and curly hair. This type of hair is a wonder to behold by its natural self, but it may prove to come with some difficulty, especially in the area of grooming since the thickness can make it harder to clean and maintain.
Furthermore, many black women nowadays also prefer smooth and silky straight locks that look better put-together and more flexible for everyday wear, especially in more formal settings like work or school.
It is then no wonder that black women tend to look to hair straightening tools and products to help them tame their manes. These come in the form of straightening shampoos, conditioners, serums, creams, heated brushes or combs, and the ever staple hair straightening flat iron.
Working out kinks in your hair takes time and a lot of patience. Usually, to gain great results is equivalent to hours’ worth of preparation and the straightening process itself.
It is helpful to use effective products and have trusty tools on hand to ease out the painstaking process and help you achieve a silkier, straighter crowning glory in the least amount of time possible without compromising results.
As with so many other things, hair straightening is best achieved with excellent preparation. Since you will be subjecting your hair to heat and friction, it is best to nourish and protect it beforehand so as to avoid serious hair damage that may leave your hair limp, dry, frizzy, or worse –fried.
Look for the best hair straightening products such as shampoos, conditioners and serums to give your hair ample moisture and prevent it from drying out. You can find such products that have great heat-protecting qualities, or are specifically made to protect the hair from heat damage.
Just shampoo as you would normally and make sure to rinse thoroughly. You can apply a leave on conditioner and a hair serum or oil afterwards to lock in moisture. And, just before you begin the hair ironing process, spray on a heat protectant to further insure your hair from damage.
But what should you look for in a good quality hair straightening flat iron? There are a lot of these on the market these days, online and in beauty stores, and many of them have very similar features with a few defining perks that set one above the rest. Their prices may also vary, so make sure to pick one that is within your desired budget without foregoing the quality of the material.
It would be a great hassle to be going store to store every couple of months just to buy a new hair straightener because the previous one broke yet again. A flat iron of excellent quality will be able to service you for years and years, giving you years and years worth of smooth, straight and silky hair, too. The best flat irons are those that are reliable and durable.
Also, ensure the efficiency of your flat iron by checking its maximum temperature. The higher the heat of a straightening hair iron, the more efficient it will be in straightening your hair. Just imagine having to iron and re-iron your hair in multiple passes per section at a time.
Wouldn’t that be a waste of time? Not to mention the amount of damage these repeated passes can do to your hair. Just remember, the less number of times you need to iron your hair to achieve good results, the better it is for your hair health; and this can only be achieved with high heat.
Finally, make sure that your flat iron is up to date with the latest technology. This technology may include negative ions and infrared, which are helpful in reducing frizz. The latest hair straightening flat irons are usually made of ceramic, and sometimes with a mixture of titanium and/or tourmaline.
Start from your hair at the bottom section and work one side at a time. Try not to overcrowd your flat iron and work with small sections at a time.
When doing this, do away with distractions by pinning the rest of your hair up and away from the section you are working on.
Work from your roots to your tips using your straightening iron and a fine toothed comb as a guide and to clear the way for the iron to prevent snags.
Take your time. Rushing to get results will not give you the results you are looking for. For long-lasting, silky straight hair, go at a slow pace.
Here is a great demonstration on how to use your hot tool flat iron on thick, black hair to give sleek, shiny and healthy looking hair.