Is there a connection?? Ask any woman who has lived through the scorching scalp burn and broken hair from a relaxer creme that was left on too long,..........it’s a resounding YES! It is no wonder that the hair extension category of our industry has grown immensely in the last few decades. It’s because so many are losing hair to the short and LONG term effects of the sodium hydroxide (lye) culprit. You can watch the movie by Chris Rock, “Good Hair” to get an education that has stirred the community in good and not so good ways!
If you can imagine the hair follicle in the scalp for just a moment, there is a space between the skin of the scalp and the side of the hair. Imagine it like a vase and the long stem of your flower (you hair) is standing at attention. Where the gap between the stem and the edge of the vase(scalp/skin/follicle) is where the damaging factors get in. If you can imagine 80,000 of these vases arranged next to each other, that would be the view of a head of hair, each vase representing the follicle and the flower stem each hair. Now, when a relaxer cream is applied, that cream gets onto the lip of that vase and slides rite down the hair INTO the vase where the water should be. In this example, where the stem meets the bottom of the vase, would be representative of where the bulb of the hair gets its nourishment from the blood capillaries. BUT, when this sodium hydroxide, a very caustic chemical (same stuff that unclogs drain pipes) gets into that bulb area, it burns the bulb. That’s what every woman knows the feeling of, but only relates to it as a sign to rinse it off! The problem is that when that gets to the bulb, the damage is being done in a long term way. After monthly treatments, this continues to burn that bulb, and also the vase begins to loose its shape, thus flattening down and out further exposing the root of the hair, allowing the sodium hydroxide to get in there even easier. Over time, the hair thins, and the scalp starts to shine! It is not the shine anyone is looking for, and you who have had this happen over the years know what I mean. It just keeps getting worse, until extensions, wigs, etc. are necessary to cover the glaring baldness.
In developing our products, we came up with a solution that protects the scalp better than anything on the market today including those in the synthetic and “trusted” categories for ethnic care. In fact, the only place one will “burn” is the spot that gets missed in the stylists application. In fact, because the scalp is so protected, it will require timers to know when the hair is relaxed fully, rather than running to the sink to stop the burn. It also allows better straightening with less chances of breakage.