It’s easy to have a love-hate relationship with your curls. If you’re a curly girl yourself, you’ll know what I’m talking about.
On some days, your spirals are bouncy and do exactly what you want them to.
But on other days, they have a life of their own and look like a frizzy, poofy mess that feels impossible to tame.
Curly ladies have their own techniques to tame their curls.
Some turn to heat-styling, while others drench their hair in leave-in conditioner in an effort to keep their curls sleek.
But there’s a more permanent way to tame your unruly locks without having to lose out on your gorgeous texture.
I’m talking about texturizing.
Texturizing is a chemical process similar to a relaxer or keratin treatment that tames frizzy curls without getting rid of your spiral pattern completely.
Sounds like a dream, doesn’t it?
Well, you still have to weigh the pros and cons of texturizing natural hair before actually doing it.
What Does It Mean To Texturize Your Hair?
First thing’s first. What is texturizing, anyway?
Essentially, a texturizer is a kind of like a milder relaxer.
Instead of straightening your curls, it just softens your texture.
That means you get smooth, frizz-free hair without completely obliterating your curl pattern.
It’s a very popular treatment for African American hair that tends to be super kinky and coily, and thus challenging to manage on the regular.
By loosening the curls, texturizing your hair allows you to continue being proud of your God-given texture while keeping your hair sleek and manageable.
The chemicals in a texturizer are quite similar to those in a relaxer.
It may contain agents like calcium hydroxide or sodium hydroxide.
In fact, you could technically use a relaxer to texturize your hair, only you will leave it in your hair for a shorter time.
These chemical components found in your texturizer will carefully break down the hydrogen bonds in your hair that give you your specific curl pattern.
The result is looser waves or curls that are easier to detangle and style.
It’s Not All Roses
But don’t get me wrong – it’s not all rainbows and hearts.
Even if it’s referred to as a milder relaxer, it can still cause some damage to the hair.
Because of that, it has to be washed away with a neutralizing shampoo when it does its job on your hair.
Following up with a repairing conditioner is also a must.
One last thing: Texturizers shouldn’t be confused with perms, which add and enhance curls in straight and wavy hair.
People sometimes mistake texturizing for a treatment that can give them more texture.
On the contrary, texturizers lessen how curly your hair is.
Who Should Get Hair Texturizers?
Sure, texturizing your hair is super helpful when you’re dealing with thick curls that are often a nightmare to work with. Super exciting, right?
Unfortunately, texturizers don’t work the same exact way for everyone.
It’s better on some hair types.
On others, it will emit an unpredictable and sometimes even ineffective response.
But who are texturizers suitable for?
Let’s talk about curl patterns first.
Anyone with S-shaped curls or natural waves can expect good results from texturizers.
For those with more zig-zaggy hair patterns, it might not be the best option (more on that in a sec!).
Now for length. Texturizers can technically work on all hair lengths, but they’re the best for short or medium-length cuts.
On longer hair, maintenance can be a problem.
Texturizers are notorious for not coming out evenly when you’re doing one application after a couple of months apart as your hair grows.
The longer your hair gets, the straighter the bottom will turn out as you go for another texturizer touch-up.
This will give your hair a weird and uneven curl pattern.
If you have severely damaged hair because of bleaching, dyeing, and other chemical processes, you might want to put off your plans for texturizing as well.
Your hair is already fragile because it’s curly, but with the chemical damage from previous treatments, it’s even worse.
The texturizer chemicals might damage your hair further, so it’s best to stay away until you have grown out your natural hair again.
Texturizers are terrific on virgin hair, not super rough, straw-like, damaged tresses.
If you’re not sure whether your hair can handle the texturizing process, book a consultation with your stylist.
They’ll assess your hair health and find out if it’s the right option for you.
Pros And Cons Of Texturizing Natural Hair
Before you make a decision on whether this is something you’d like to do, let’s look at the pros and cons of texturizing natural hair.
Pros Of Texturizing Natural Hair
Texturizing natural and curly hair is popular for a reason.
It gives so many benefits to those who are already so stressed out with how unruly and frizzy their curls are.
If that sounds like you, check out these pros that can encourage you to go on with your plans of texturizing your curls:
It Helps Smooth And De-Frizz Unruly Curls
Texturizing your hair is a quick and convenient way to get rid of all the frustrating frizz and flyaways you deal with every day.
And the best part is that you can still maintain your curly texture.
Texturizers are a gamechanger if you have a hard time styling your hair each day because of how messy and unmanageable your spirals are.
They’ll make your hair smooth, tamed, and in some cases, a little bit shinier.
But don’t expect your hair to have a drastic transformation in one session if you have super coily, kinky curls.
Remember: the experience is different for everyone.
For very curly locks, you might have to sit through more than one texturizing session to get the results you desire (spaced out, of course).
It’s Way Gentler Than A Relaxer
The chemicals used in a texturizer’s formula aren’t as strong and potent as those found in a relaxer, even if they have a lot of common agents.
That makes them a lot less damaging to the hair.
Plus, many texturizers nowadays are infused with some conditioning ingredients to keep your hair health intact.
Another thing that makes texturizers less damaging than relaxers is the fact that they’re left on the hair for just five to ten minutes per session.
Relaxers are usually left in for 20 minutes to half an hour.
Because you leave the chemicals in your hair for a shorter time when you texturize it, it’s not as exposed to the harsh chemicals in the treatment.
The shorter the period it’s left to process in your hair, the more you soften the blow of the chemical damage later on.
You Won’t End Up With Flat And Limp Hair
Relaxers are infamous for how pin-straight they leave the hair.
Even though they make your hair look sleek, it often looks lifeless and limp, as if the hair strands are glued to the sides of your face.
There’s no volume or life to the hair.
But with texturizers, you get the best of both worlds.
You can keep your texture and volume, just a bit dialed down so it’s not as unruly and tangly.
Texturizers only soften and loosen up your curls, not completely erase them.
The result is natural-looking waves that are easier to care for in the long run.
It Can Make The Hair Much Easier To Style
Only ladies with kinky curls know the hassle of having to style their hair.
There’s so much work that goes into it just to make sure it stays moisturized, bouncy, and tame, from leave-in creams to protein-infused gels.
It’s also difficult to heat-style super curly hair.
After you texturize your natural hair, styling becomes a lot easier and more manageable because of how tame the hair becomes.
It will be a breeze combing and detangling the hair because a lot of its rough and coily texture will be gone.
Texturizers will also give you more freedom to heat-style your hair.
It will be easier to switch between straightening your hair or doing tousled waves with a curling wand after texturizing.
In short, it offers your hair a lot more versatility when it comes to the styles you can wear.
Cons Of Texturizing – What You Must Watch Out For
Of course, there are things you have to be willing to compromise too when getting a texturizing treatment.
It’s not always the perfect solution to your curly hair challenges.
Take a look at the cons of getting your hair texturized to see if it’s still something you’re willing to try out:
It Still Deals A Degree Of Chemical Damage To The Hair
No matter how healthy and moisturized your natural hair is, any kind of chemical process will still damage it.
It’s the same with texturizers because even if they are gentler than bleach or relaxers, they still contain strong chemicals and agents.
There’s a common misconception that texturizing the hair is a natural process, much like braiding.
But it’s definitely not, and you can still end up overprocessing your hair with it if you’re not careful or don’t space out your sessions.
If you end up with damaged hair after your texturizing treatment, make sure to replenish your locks with moisture and protein.
This will help heal and repair the hair while adding more bounce and shine.
Your Hair Will Feel Dry And Rough Afterward
Speaking of damage, texturizing your hair can also leave your hair feeling parched and straw-like to the touch.
This is the same as what happens when you dye or relax your hair since chemicals will always strip your hair of the healthy oils coating it.
Aside from those signs, you might also notice that your hair sheds more or has increased in split ends after your texturizing treatment.
You might even see some strands snapping off because of how fragile they’ve gotten.
To remedy this, pamper your hair with nourishing, protein-rich creams and conditioners.
Doesn’t Work So Well On Z-Shaped Curls
Unlike S-shaped curls that are still quite loose in a way, Z-shaped or “zig-zag” curls are kinkier and flatter.
The spirals are flat and bend in sharper angles, mimicking the letter Z.
They’re usually thick, coarse, and more prone to dehydration, too.
Because of the sharp angles of this curl pattern, using texturizers on Z-shaped hair leads to unpredictable results.
If the hair is fine, it may work.
But on very kinky zig-zaggy hair, you may just end up accentuating the razor-sharp angles of your curl pattern instead of softening the curls.
Going for a relaxer might be the better option for those with Z-shaped curls.
It’s Not Ideal For Those Wanting To Transition To Natural Hair
Many people think that because texturizers don’t eliminate your curls completely, your hair is still considered natural.
That isn’t the case at all.
Texturized hair is still chemically processed.
While you do get to keep your curl pattern when you opt for a texturizer over a relaxer, it still doesn’t solve the problem of regrowth.
Texturizers will still permanently alter the structure of your strands.
You can’t wash it away as you do with semi-permanent hair dye.
The only way to get rid of your texturized locks is to cut them off.
Another problem arises during touch-ups, especially if you’re doing them by yourself.
If you overlap the application of the texturizer to a part of the hair that’s been texturized before, it will straighten your locks more, giving you two different curl patterns.
This poses an even bigger problem if you’re not ready to chop your hair off to go natural.
Like with all major hair decisions, discerning whether or not to go ahead with chemical treatment means weighing the pros and cons of texturizing natural hair.
No chemical process is perfect, and you have to fully understand everything you’re getting out of it – good or bad – before you go on with your plans.
There are lots of benefits that texturizer provides, like smoother hair that will no longer be a hassle when you style it.
But there are also some downsides to it, like chemical damage and having a harder time transitioning back to all-natural locks.
Make sure you’re 100% on board with all these pros and cons before booking an appointment to have your hair texturized.
And if you do choose to go on with it, be aware of what you have to do afterward to take better care of your hair. Good luck!