Keratin Treatment Vs. Hair Relaxer

It takes effort to show some style. Combine that with some added self-care and attention, and you have yourself an award-winning look. Being a natural accessory, the same can easily be said for hair. When up in tight curls, hair can be difficult to straighten out, particularly for naturally occurring curls. Not to mention the frizz containment being non-existent. But it’s nothing a professional treatment can’t handle, right?


Well, you may end up coming to a pause soon after, as there isn’t just one method of straightening out hair. Hair relaxer and keratin treatments are both professional hair-straightening methods. But it isn’t that new to be in a spot where you don’t know what to choose. Both methods can seem almost identical to the average individual, and it may take a seasoned professional to differentiate between them. So, to help push you in the right direction, let’s break down both treatments.


What are Hair Relaxers?

Hair relaxers are (often alkaline) products which chemically help straighten hair. Kinks and curls are softened up and frizz is controlled. Being a chemically altering method, it is also a permanent solution. But it shouldn’t be confused as being a complete straightener on its own. While it does ease up curls and help straighten hair, you might feel the need to go for additional hair straightening methods if you’re looking for smooth curl-free straight hair.

A hair relaxer triggers a process called lanthionization, which is the breakdown of disulfide bonds to loosen up curls in hair, hence, being a chemical alteration to straighten hair. As with any product, some caution is advised, but it is even more strongly suggested with chemically altering products.

If you’re to apply a hair relaxer, it would be safe to suggest a few things to help apply. It is best to avoid letting a hair relaxer lotion or cream come in contact with your scalp, especially if your scalp is sensitive. In the case of a sensitive scalp, go for no-lye (calcium hydroxide) hair relaxers in your selection. If you lack a sensitive scalp, it is preferred to go for lye (sodium hydroxide) relaxers, as no-lye hair relaxers can cause dryness.

An additional type of relaxer is the ammonium thioglycolate relaxer, which works best on relatively fine hair.

While the effects are permanent, the structurally modified hair will eventually be replaced by new grown hair.

Keratin Treatment

Cons and Risks

Hair relaxers are chemical treatments and, thus, need to be carried out with caution. Chemical damage to your hair can last until you regrow that hair, or your scalp can be adversely affected. A disadvantage for using hair relaxers is that dyeing hair will likely cause additional problems, and relaxers are not to be used on prior color-treated hair, either.

Hair relaxer treatments also come in the low hundreds of dollars for a full treatment, whereas at-home DIY sets can be as cheap as $20. Order Now! Hair relaxer


About Keratin Treatments

Keratin is a protein found in hair, skin and nails, acting also as a defensive protein in your body. It is significantly more resistant and stronger to strain than other bodily cells. Being a protein that structurally forms hair, it is believed that keratin products help improve the integrity of hair while also giving off a more clean and flashier appearance.

By users of keratin, it is said that hair gets smoother and way more manageable, but the effects can easily vary depending on a variety of hair conditions. Generally, however, it has been reported to keep hair from breaking easily, making it a great cosmetic ingredient.

hair straightening

While there are keratin products, they pale in comparison to professional salon treatments, those being way heavier on time and promising to last for about 12 weeks. In comparison to a hair relaxer, a keratin treatment goes as far as to give a super-straight, sleek and flat look to hair, acting as a highly effective hair straightening method.


After being broken down through hydrolysis, the keratin compound is inserted into the layers on your hair strands, relaxing hair down to the layer below the outer cuticle layer, reducing frizz and adding volume.

Maintaining keratin-treated hair requires some consistency, especially before within the promised time limit. Of course, the duration it lasts will differ depending on the products you use and how you care for your hair. Order Now! Keratin Treatment

Cons and Risks

Keratin treatments can have emissions of formaldehyde gas, which is a carcinogenic chemical, but it also induces various other health conditions like nose bleeds and respiratory issues. That being said, there are some formaldehyde-free options in the market now, and it is highly advised to target salons that use those products.

Keratin treatments can also cost far above $200, which perhaps would make some people lean towards going for a hair relaxer.


What to Opt for

While it is obviously up to you to choose, it depends heavily on preference, as you may have already deduced. While it may seem that a hair relaxer is the way to go based on budget and permanence, both methods have solid advantages while easily competing with their disadvantages.

So, if you’re not as worried about hair weakening, hair relaxers may be your choice. But if you want to go for a temporary hair-straightening treatment that might even provide some hair benefits, the keratin treatments may be your best choice (barring the formaldehyde).

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