I don't straighten my hair very often, but when I do I have a different set of products that I use to achieve and maintain my look. I have learned some things through trial and error and other things from the wonderful women from youtube and other sites and forums. This is how my process goes:
Step 1: Shampoo my hair. I always shampoo before I flat iron to make sure that there isn't any build up on my hair or scalp. I don't suggest co-washing before you straighten.
Step 2: I ALWAYS deep condition before I straighten using a moisturizing DC. I typically use ORS Replenishing Conditioner. This is a light protein as well but I have found it to be very moisturizing on my hair. I make sure to fully detangle my hair at this stage with a wide tooth comb. I follow the comb with my Denman brush making sure to get any shed hair that is left behind. I do this to ensure that once I begin to flat iron I don't have any snags. After rinsing the conditioner I move on to the next step.
Step 3: I apply my heat protectant. I use FHI Hot Sauce. I simply love this product. It isn't heavy or oily but it adds moisture. I apply this in about 4 sections.
Step 4: I am now ready to blow dry my hair. I have found this to a VERY important step in this process. I learned my technique from this video:
I will say that I had a hard time getting the technique down of holding the blow dryer and Denman at the same time. I lack coordination, but I'm getting better. Also, my hair is a bit thicker than hers so it didn't go through the Denman as easy as hers did, but I started to get a rhythm . My results show the difference. I'll show pictures from when I first learned this technique and blow dried it. Check out part 2 of that video as well.
This is from January. Clean towel dried hair.
These are blow dried using her technique.
Step 5: Finally, I flat iron my hair in small sections using another VERY useful technique by SalonCabelo:
This comb chase method is so key. At least for me. I've straightened with and without this technique when I was trying to rush things along and my hair wasn't nearly as straight or silky.
Again these pics are from late January.
Maintenance: I don't use alot of product on my straightened hair because I don't want to weigh it down. The only thing I use to moisturize while straight is coconut oil. It is very light and adds a nice sheen. If I want a bit more shine I will add a few drops of Kemi Oyl to it.
I do this nightly before going to bed and sometimes in the morning depending on how it looks and feels. I wrap my hair at night, but I don't know how to explain how I do it. It's not the traditional one way wrap. My hair would always stink after a few days of doing that. I know you know what I'm talking about too. :)
Hmmm, how can I explain this. Ok, I take my hair in 4 sections. Two in front and two in back and first start with the left front and swoop it around the back to the right section and bobby pin it down. I do the same with the ride side pinned down on the left side. Then I take the back left and pin in around to the front of the right section and same from back back right to left. I hope that makes sense and doesn't sound too complicated. It's super easy. So much so that it feels foolish to even explain it. Anyway, I do this because it leaves the hair room to breathe so that it doesn't stink and also because it doesn't stress the edges or cause that unruly hair on the side that you swooped the hair when doing a traditional wrap.
Don't forget to wear your satin bonnet to bed.
Here's another picture of my hair straightened from late August. I kind of rushed through it and am in need of a trim here, but you can see my growth.
If anyone had trouble understanding the wrap technique (or anything) be sure and let me know. I'll do my best to explain it better.
Btw, I think I'm going to stick with this new page design. I hope you guys like it as much as I do.