Hair Straighteners

Chemical hair straighteners.

Hair straighteners are called hair relaxers.These are the different types of  hair straighteners available.


Calcium hydroxide (a “no-lye” relaxers),


Sodium hydroxide (lye relaxers),


Ammonium thioglycolate(a “no lye” relaxer)=A common ingredient in chemical depilatories

Calcium thioglycolate:(a “no lye ” relaxer) the active dissolving ingredient in many cream depilatories.

or sodium thioglycolate (aka Jherri curls)…

Potassium Hydroxide =1.A caustic white solid, KOH, used as a bleach and in the manufacture of soaps, dyes, alkaline batteries, and many potassium compounds. Also called caustic potash, lye; Also called potash.2.A potassium compound often used in agriculture and industry. 3.A toxic and highly corrosive chemical used to make soap, in bleaching, and as a paint remover. It is used in small amounts as a food additive and in the preparation of some drugs.

Lithium hydroxide= (LiOH) is a corrosive alkali. It is the product of mixing lithium and water. The reaction is as follows: 2Li + 2H2O ¨ 2LiOH + H2

Guanidine Hydroxide (“no lye” relaxer)

Guanidine=A strongly alkaline crystalline compound, NHC(NH2)2, formed by the oxidation of guanine and found in the urine as a normal product of protein metabolism. It is commonly used in the organic synthesis of plastics, resins, and explosives

Guanidine carbonate

Sodium hydroxide is the strongest of relaxers and is often called the lye relaxer. It is a very harsh, caustic chemical, and should only be used on coarse, extremely curly hair. The pH level is between 10 – 14, which means it has the most potentially harmful relaxer — and if not used with proper care can cause soreness of the scalp and dry, brittle hair.

No-lye relaxers are either guanidine hydroxide (a combination of calcium hydroxide cream with guanidine carbonate), or ammonium thioglycolate. These have a pH of between 9 – 9.5, and are considered to be less damaging than the sodium hydroxide or lye relaxers. However it is still vital to give your hair the same TLC that you would give your hair with a sodium hydroxide relaxer.

The chemicals in relaxers change the structure of  your hair by penetrating the hair shaft and rearranging the bonds in the hair that hold the proteins in the hair. The bonds that hold the protein give the hair it’s natural shape. These chemicals destroy the protein that makes up our hair, thereby weakening the hair shaft which leads to hair loss and breakage. The same holds true for the chemicals in permanent’s and coloring.

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