A silk press is a modern alternative to the press and curl. As with the traditional press and curl, a silk press involves the application of heat to relax natural hair.
In the case of a traditional press and curl, a hot comb is used to press the hair and straighten it, ordinarily with the assistance of a product. This process can make the hair greasy. A silk press works on the same principles, but is considered superior. A flat, hot iron is applied directly to the hair and product is not required. This gives natural hair a straighter, smoother appearance.