Alternatives To Hair Relaxers

7 Best Alternatives To Hair Relaxers 2023 | Healthy, Chemical-Free Options For Hair

Discover safe and effective Alternatives to Hair Relaxers in our comprehensive guide. Learn how to achieve smoother, more manageable hair without the use of harsh chemicals. Explore natural and gentle methods for maintaining your hair’s health and beauty today!

Hair relaxers help control frizzy, chaotic hair. But they also get criticism for harmful chemical formulas. So here are a few alternatives to hair relaxers.

These are a heady mix of chemicals that penetrate deep into the cuticles of your hair to loosen the natural waves and curls on your hair.

But this process is extremely harmful to your hair and even your skin! It weakens your strands and causes hair to become brittle and prone to breakage. 

Other harmful side effects of hair relaxers are they can burn your skin, permanently damage your scalp and lead to hair fall.

Looking for something that gives you the same results but without the harmful side effects of a relaxer?

We have tried and tested some alternatives to hair relaxers that you can try to make your hair smooth, sleek and manageable.

Top Alternatives To Hair Relaxers

Straighten Your Hair

alternatives to relaxed hair

This is one of the most common methods used by people to make hair sleek and smooth. 

This is one of the easily accessible alternatives to a hair relaxer and you can do it yourself at the comfort of your home in a matter of time. 

Usually, a straightening iron helps in straightening your hair.

For best results using a straightener or a flat iron, divide your hair into smaller sections and then straighten them. 

You should also make sure to use a heat-protectant hair serum, cream or a heat protectant spray before using heat tools on your hair.

If you are careless like me, there is a chance that you might burn your hair even while using a flat iron. 

So when you buy one, make sure it has a temperature control option which makes sure that the machine doesn’t get too hot to cause hair damage.


  • You can try different styles easily
  • You do not need to go to a hair-dresser for this
  • Makes your hair smooth and frizz-free


  • Might damage your hair in the long-term

Check out the Remington Anti Static Flat Iron on This flat iron is made of ceramic and hence gentle on your natural hair. It also reduces static, preventing frizzy hair.

Get A Keratin Treatment

keratin treatments for relaxed hair

A keratin treatment is a chemical process that involves the introduction of keratin protein to your natural hair. 

The keratin enters the porous areas of your hair to give you that healthy sleek look. Keratin is one of the most important proteins for healthy and smooth hair.

This treatment is greatly recommended for those with wavy, curly hair who want to try a straight hair look. 

A keratin treatment is a great alternative to hair relaxers and something that greatly helped me after my hair was damaged by years of colouring and bleaching.

It makes your hair smooth and silky for up to six months with proper maintenance. It is also popularly known as Brazillian hair treatment. 

You should only get this done by an experienced hairdresser. 

The time taken to complete the entire process depends on the formula of the chemical, your hair texture and hair length. 

This treatment rose into popularity in recent times and has even been tried by celebrities like Megan Markle.


  • Makes your hair sleek and shiny
  • Results last for up to six months
  • Removes frizz and dryness
  • Works on all hair types
  • Cuts the time on styling


  • Expensive treatment
  • Not recommended for pregnant women
  • Certain keratin treatments might contain carcinogenic substances
  • Might cause allergic reactions

You can find an affordable and effective at-home keratin treatment right here in the form of the Brazillian Keratin Treatment Complex Blowout.

temporary relaxer for natural hair

Use Silicone Creams

creams for relaxed hair

Silicone creams are another viable alternative to hair relaxers. They help you in making your hair frizz-free and smooth without using any heat tools. 

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If you are someone with thick hair like me who finds it hard to tame your hair using a straightener and doesn’t want to use any chemical treatments, this is a great option.

These creams are heavy and have a thick consistency which makes them suitable for those with thick voluminous hair. 

But make sure to apply silicone creams when your hair is partially dry since the product gets well absorbed into your strands.

Work the product on your roots first and move to the tips for the best results. It makes your hair smooth until your next wash!


  • Enables easy hair styling
  • Protects against sun damage
  • Removes frizz and tangles


  • Difficult to wash out
  • Might clog your follicles
  • Temporary

Check out the Mon Platin Silicone cream on to get smooth hair that looks chemically relaxed without any of the damage!

non chemical hair relaxer for black hair

Vegetable Oil Alternatives To Hair Relaxers

homemade hair relaxer

Vegetable oils have been used during ancient times to soften and smoothen your hair. 

They have been a part of a lot of DIY treatments and they provide intense nourishment and moisturisation to your skin.

I usually use it as a hair mask before shampooing and conditioning my hair but sometimes if my ends look too dry, I lightly apply some non-stick vegetable oil on them to make them shiny and moisturised.

Make sure you do not use any cooking oil in the name of vegetable oil since they are processed oil that might not be that beneficial for your hair.

Always opt for unprocessed cold-pressed, virgin vegetable oils. 

Some of the most popular oils for your hair include coconut, argan, almond, olive and jojoba oil. 

It also provides a host of other benefits like promoting hair growth, relieving scalp inflammations, protecting hair from sun damage etc.


  • Contains Vitamin E
  • Prevents sun damage
  • Nourishes your hair
  • Has antibacterial properties
  • Soothes inflammation


  • Contains fatty acids
  • Contains trans fats
  • Might weigh down your hair

Blow Drying Alternatives To Hair Relaxers

hairstyle for relaxed hair

One of my favourite alternatives to hair relaxers, Blow drying is another technique that removes frizz and makes your hair smooth and sleek. 

You have probably gotten this done at least once in your life after getting a haircut from a salon.

Blow drying makes your hair look presentable and well-groomed while removing any frizz. 

This is done with the help of a hair dryer and a blow-drying brush but you should definitely use a heat protectant spray or cream before starting the process. 


  • Flexible hair styling
  • Cheap
  • Portable 
  • You can do it yourself


  • Long-term usage might cause heat damage

Get A Haircut

hairstyles for relaxed hair

Most people are not a fan of hair cutting since they want to maintain long hair. 

But little do they know that cutting and styling your hair properly can actually promote hair growth and healthy hair. 

You don’t really have to cut long lengths, you just have to trim the ends. This is especially important if you have dry or split ends.


  • Accentuates your facial structures
  • Removes dry and split ends
  • Makes the hair look healthy


  • Might lead to limited styling options

Try Long-term Protective Styles

Alternatives To Hair Relaxer

Sometimes you can still get the sleek look of a hair relaxer without touching your natural hair. 

There are other options that offer long-term protection to your natural hair such as hair extensions and weaves.

There are a variety of extensions available in the market such as clip-in extension, sew-in extension, wigs, braids etc that makes your hair look sleek and stylish. 

These extensions are made out of human hair as well as synthetic materials such as nylon, acrylic, polyester etc.

Using a human hair wig or extension can make your hair look natural. But a silicone extension comes pre-styled which means that you do not have to spend a lot of time grooming your hair.


  • Low maintenance
  • Promotes hair growth
  • Variety of options 
  • Pre-styled
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  • Might cause hair breakage
  • Might cause itchy scalp
  • Might damage your edges
  • Expensive

Natural Hair Relaxers without Chemicals

natural hair relaxers without chemicals

If you’re looking for natural hair relaxers without chemicals, there are several methods and products you can consider. These options can help you achieve a smoother and more manageable texture without the use of harsh chemicals like traditional relaxers. Here are some natural alternatives:

  1. Coconut Milk and Lemon Juice:
    • Mix fresh coconut milk with freshly squeezed lemon juice.
    • Apply this mixture to your hair and leave it on for about 30 minutes.
    • Rinse thoroughly with water.
    • Coconut milk can help soften and straighten hair naturally, while lemon juice may aid in loosening curls.
  2. Yogurt and Honey Mask:
    • Combine yogurt and honey to create a thick paste.
    • Apply the mask to your hair and scalp.
    • Leave it on for 1-2 hours and then rinse with water.
    • Yogurt contains lactic acid, which can help in softening and conditioning the hair.
  3. Aloe Vera Gel:
    • Apply pure aloe vera gel to your hair.
    • Leave it on for 1-2 hours.
    • Rinse thoroughly.
    • Aloe vera can help in straightening and conditioning the hair.
  4. Rice Water Rinse:
    • Rinse your hair with water that has been used to rinse rice (fermented rice water).
    • Leave it on for about 30 minutes before rinsing with plain water.
    • Fermented rice water contains inositol, which may help in reducing frizz and making hair smoother.
  5. Henna Treatment:
    • Mix henna powder with warm water to create a thick paste.
    • Apply the paste to your hair and let it sit for a few hours.
    • Rinse thoroughly.
    • Henna can help in conditioning and adding weight to the hair, making it appear straighter.
  6. African Threading:
    • This is a traditional African method where threads are wrapped around sections of damp hair to stretch and straighten it over time.
    • The hair is threaded and left in for several days or longer to achieve the desired straightness.
  7. Braids or Twists:
    • Protective styles like braids or twists can help stretch and relax natural curls over time without using chemicals.
    • Regularly moisturize and care for your hair while it’s in these styles.

Remember that these natural methods may not provide the same level of straightening as chemical relaxers, and the results can vary depending on your hair type and texture. It’s essential to be patient and consistent with these methods if you choose to use them. Additionally, always conduct a patch test to ensure you don’t have any adverse reactions to the natural ingredients.

Benefits Of Using Alternative To Relaxer For Black Hair

Using alternatives to relaxers for black hair can offer a range of benefits, as these products are designed to help maintain the natural texture and health of the hair while avoiding the potentially damaging effects of chemical relaxers. Here are some of the benefits:

  1. Preserves Natural Curl Pattern: Alternatives like twist-outs, braids, and natural hair products allow individuals to embrace and maintain their natural curl patterns, helping them achieve unique and beautiful textures.
  2. Minimizes Damage: Chemical relaxers can weaken and damage hair over time, causing breakage and thinning. Using alternatives helps to reduce the risk of hair damage and promotes healthier, stronger strands.
  3. Versatility: Alternatives offer a wide range of styling options, from protective styles like braids and twists to versatile twist-outs, braid-outs, and natural updos, allowing for creativity and flexibility in hair styling.
  4. Healthier Scalp: Chemical relaxers can irritate and damage the scalp. Natural hair alternatives often include nourishing ingredients that promote scalp health and reduce irritation.
  5. Less Maintenance: Maintaining natural hair or using alternatives generally requires less frequent touch-ups compared to relaxers. This can save time and reduce the risk of over-processing the hair.
  6. Reduced Chemical Exposure: By avoiding chemical relaxers, individuals can minimize their exposure to harsh chemicals, which can be especially beneficial for those with sensitive skin or allergies.
  7. Encourages Self-Expression: Embracing natural hair allows for self-expression and acceptance of one’s unique beauty, promoting self-confidence and a positive self-image.
  8. Long-Term Growth: Natural hair alternatives can promote long-term hair growth, as they help maintain the health of the hair and reduce the risk of damage that can inhibit growth.
  9. Cost-Effective: Relaxer treatments often require regular salon visits, which can be costly. Natural hair alternatives are often more cost-effective in the long run, as they can be maintained at home with proper care.
  10. Community and Support: The natural hair movement has created a strong community of individuals who share tips, advice, and support, fostering a sense of belonging and empowerment.
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In summary, using alternatives to relaxers for black hair not only helps maintain the natural texture and health of the hair but also offers a range of benefits, including reduced damage, versatility in styling, and greater self-expression and confidence. These alternatives can be a healthier and more empowering choice for individuals with black hair.

FAQs about Non Chemical Hair Relaxers

How to relax natural hair without chemicals?

There are plenty of ways to straighten curly hair without using chemicals, but the most popular methods include using hot water, steam, and a flat iron. Here are a few tips for getting the best results:
Start by soaking your hair in warm water for 10 to 15 minutes. This will soften the curls and allow you to work more easily with the straighteners.
Steam your hair with a steamer before using the straighteners. This will increase the heat and help to straighten your curls more quickly.
Use a flat iron on a low or medium heat setting to gently straighten your curls. Be sure to avoid getting too close to the roots; this can cause damage.
Repeat these steps as necessary until your curls are straightened out. Remember to moisturize your hair after using any of these methods; curly hair is naturally dry and can become brittle if not treated well!

How do I relax natural hair using flat iron?

If you’re looking for an easy and chemical-free way to straighten curly hair, you may want to try using a flat iron. Flat irons are the best choice for curly hair because they heat evenly and don’t pull or damage the hair. Here are a few tips on how to use a flat iron to straighten curly hair:
Start by washing your hair and towel-drying it thoroughly.
Apply a heat protectant if your hair is prone to frizzing or breaking.
Place a small amount of product in your palm and distribute it evenly throughout your hair.
Secure the flat iron in place by wrapping a section of hair around the barrel. Be sure not to overheat or apply too much pressure – overuse of heat can damage your hair!
Press the iron against the product-covered section of hair, starting at the ends and working your way up. Be patient – it may take a few minutes for the curls to become straightened.
Repeat on all sections of curly hair, being sure to avoid any hot spots or damage to your locks.
These tips should help you get started using a flat iron to straighten curly hair without resorting to harsh chemicals

Why You Should Trust Haireveryday?

The author of this article, Leah Marie Priest has a degree in Cosmetology with years of experience in dealing with hair care, scalp care, and hairstyling. As someone who extensively deals with all kinds of hair textures, products, styling methods and more, hair Leah Marie knows what kind of products and procedures suit each hair type and person. We have also tested these hair products and processes ourselves to provide you an unbiased review about every product. Each of our articles are also reviewed by a team of medical professionals so that you get the most accurate and expert-reviewed information.

Getting a sudden urge to ditch your curls for smooth, silky locks?

You can consider all of the above alternatives to hair relaxers before going choosing permanent hair straightening.

If you’re worried about damaging hair and are open to styling your hair frequently, these are better options for the health of your tresses.

Also Read:

How My Hair Recovered From Years of Chemical Straightening

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