Different Types Of Hair Relaxers – Which One To Choose For Your Hair?

Apart from straightening irons, Hair relaxers are used to straighten the curly, wavy, coily hairs, which is made my mixing different chemicals which does the relaxing process chemically,

They are definitely harmful to hair, but that is only when you use it too much and when you choose the wrong one for your hair type,

We have an article on Best relaxers for black hair that are for different hair textures, you can take a look at it.

What are the different types of relaxers?

Basically Relaxers are classified into three types

  1. Lye Relaxer
  2. No-Lye Relaxer
  3. Thio Relaxer

Lye Relaxers

Lye is a mixture of sodium hydroxide, water, petroleum jelly, mineral oil and emulsifiers

These mixtures are absorbed by the hair protein and weaken the hair bond which loosen the coil of hair and straighten it, this is the process happening with the lye relaxer,

The amount of lye used in hair differ from relaxers and the brands, normally the lye relaxer has the pH level of between 12 to 14, they can cause much more damage to the hair than the no-lye relaxers.

Used by the hair stylists

Usually the lye relaxers are used by the hair stylist, because they are professionals so they know the right amount to apply and the right time to rinse, and moreover they apply it evenly all over the scalp and hair, which leads to reduced risk of scalp irritation and burning sensation on your scalp,

The Lye relaxers are not highly recommended for the home use, but if you are aware of how to use it, you can use it.

Best suitable for

Lye relaxers are best suitable for the people with

No Lye Relaxers

Since the lye relaxers are high in pH level and can cause much damage to the hair, No-Lye Relaxer is introduced,

In No Lye Relaxers sodium is replaced with other ingredients but the hydroxide is included in it, since sodium is removed the pH level of this relaxers are between 9 to 11 which is lesser than the lye relaxer, and that’s why this is less harmer than the lye relaxer,

Diferent types of Hydroxides used in Lye Relaxer
1Calcium hydroxide
2Guadinine hydroxide
3Potassium hydroxide
4Lithium hydroxide

Best suitable for

No lye relaxers are best suitable for people with sensitive scalp, since sodium hydroxide is replaced with other hydroxides, the pH level is reduced and are suitable for the sensitive scalp and fine hair,

The at home relaxers that are available online are made up of these so called no ly relaxers so that the risk is reduced, there is no problem if people do not apply it all over the scalp, and there is not that much damage gonna cause is they apply excess relaxer.

Thio Relaxer

Ammonium thioglycolate relaxer is shortly called as thio relaxer, they are made up of ammonium thioglycolate as a base ingredient whereas in lye and no lye relaxers hydroxides are used as the base ingredients

Types of Relaxers pH Level
Normal Hair4.5-5
Lye Relaxer12-14
No-Lye Relaxer9-11
Thio Relaxer10

Can i use shampoo after relaxing hair?

You should definitely clarify your hair after relaxing it, because the pH level of your hair is increased after relaxing it, and in order to bring it back to the normal pH level you need to use the neutralizing shampoo which helps to clean the excess or remaining chemicals from your hair,

Which perm is better ly or no lye?

Based on the chemicals no lye relaxer is best since it cause less damage to the hair, but speaking about the hair type you have, lye relaxers will not work on the closely or tightly coiled hair, so in this case you need to use the lye relaxer,

Any relaxers are bad for the hair, but it is based on how much and how often you use it, over use of both lye and no lye relaxers causes damage to the hair and may even lead to hair loss, so be careful about choosing it and using it.

Is thioglycolate bad for the skin?

Thioglycolate are bad for not only the skin, but are also bad for eyes and digestive organs, so keep it away from contacting with eyes, and don’t consume it orally.

Can you mix lye and no lye relaxers?

Even though the base ingredient is hydroxide is both the relaxers, mixing it and applying on your hair is not adviceable, because there is a high chance of mess up in the pH level, as both has different pH levels, do not mix them and mess them up.

Why do perms smell?

Perms/relaxers are made up of strong chemicals, those chemicals that are mentioned above has ability to create a strong odor, which is why it smells bad, these smell can last on your hair for few days.


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