Can White People Use Hair Relaxers?

White people can use hair relaxers, or chemical hair treatments, to straighten curly or frizzy hair. White people's hair does have different hair curl patterns than other ethnicities' hair, so lye-based products may be too strong for certain hair types.

When straightening hair, there are several options to consider:

  • Most hair straighteners use a lye-based chemical and can damage and weaken hair. Any sort of relaxers should be applied to the front of hairline and fragile areas last to prevent further breakage.
  • Mix formulas to fit your needs. Let your stylist recommend a system that will work best for your hair's elasticity, porosity, texture, style, density and curl pattern. There is not one perfect product or treatment for all hair types.
  • Be aware of aftercare and maintenance. Some treatments do not recommend hot iron use within the first few days after treatment while some require regular maintenance on a monthly basis. Make certain to know the upkeep schedule and the possible effects on the hair before committing to a regimen.
  • Disclose the hair history to the professionals. Let the stylist know the products and treatments that are used on the hair and do a strand test.
  • Consider all the options. Before embarking on a long-term, permanent treatment, consider less damaging options such as deep conditioners or frizz-control hair products.