I received that question earlier this week and decided it was best to quickly tackle it in a blog post. Curly hair is a pretty unique thing. The shape of your hair strand is dictated by your follicles and asymmetrically shaped follicles produces oval-shaped strands that curl as it grows.
Essentially what makes your curly hair curly is the composition and structure of the strand and when the structure of the strand is eroded or stripped the hair straightens.
There are a couple of things that can affect the structure of your hair strand:
1. Relaxers – strip the strand to create straight hair
2. Chemical color – strip the strand so that color is easily visible
3. Heat – strips the outter layers of the strand to temporarily straighten the strand (This can be permanent if you are not careful)
4. Stress on the strand – banding or styles that stretch your curls
If you use or do any of those four things then chances are your hair strand will look straight rather than its usual curly.
So how do you get your hair to curl again?
Human hair is made up primarily of protein and that protein is what makes up the structure of the hair strand. When you do a protein treatment or add protein to your hair that can help to build the structure of the strand and your hair may just start to curl again.
This, however, is not a guarantee, chemical changes to hair strands are permanent that is why if you want your naturally curly hair back you have to cut off the relaxer and allow your natural hair to grow.
Color and heat can also cause permanent damage and regardless of how many protein treatments you do the hair remains stick straight.
If you put stress on your strand causing it to straighten, simply wetting it or deep conditioning will help your hair to bounce right back to normal.
What should you do when you have tried everything?
Unfortunately, you will have to cut your hair if you are committed to getting your curly hair back. You can choose to cut gradually or start over with a ‘big chop’. You must also avoid heat and color until your meet your goals as well.
Starting over is not easy but it is worth it and the awesome thing is as long as you are healthy and have healthy hair practices your hair will grow back even better than before.
Featured image – @actually_ashly