tellingMYhairstory: RELAXER BURN!!!

it’s a new year and everyone wants a new hair style or something, so I’ve been getting lots of questions on relaxers. When to get them, what products to use, how to process them etc.This brought back a memory of one of my worst hair experiences and I figured it was only right to share my hairstory with you all.

Sooooo two years ago I had a VERY VERY  bad experience with relaxing. My hairdresser was away so foolishly I allowed a very inexperienced person to relax my hair. At the time I was just trusting and assumed that standards were the same amongst the hairdressers, and that the ‘lady’ knew what she was doing. Boy was I wrong!!!I have always been quite assertive when it comes to my hair because I have such a tender scalp, and that was truly my saving grace that day! This lady burned my scalp so badly to the point that my scalp is STILL recovering. I am not exaggerating when I say I’m thankful to still have my hair…Ok, I think I’ve done enough of a build up now let me get into the details.

I went in for a relaxer and like I mentioned my hairdresser wasn’t there so this other ‘lady’ proceeded to do my hair. Things were fine at first. She based my scalp and parted my hair etc. during this time I made sure to tell her that my scalp is very tender and that I would needed her to work fast with the relaxer. Which she did not. It seemed like she had never applied relaxer before and I was starting to feel really uneasy. Plus she was chatting my ear off the whole time trying to talk hair with me and I felt like she was trying to cover up for her lack of experience. Anyway  so now my scalp is on fire and I let her know so she agrees to go rinse it out. So she rinses out the relaxer and after years of having my hair done I know she hasn’t done it thoroughly enough. Next thing she applies what should have been neutralizing shampoo but clearly wasn’t because she went on to put a heat cap over my head and tell me to sit under the steamer!!!??!! I was like, “excuse me? are you not going to put in the neutralizing shampoo, my scalp is still burning.” Then she goes “oh don’t worry ‘sweetie’ this stuff does both.” So I’m like ok, maybe this is a new product on the market and the hairdresser knows best right? NO. NO, NO, NO.  my scalp was on fire and I couldn’t shake the feeling that this wasn’t right so I got up and told her to rinse my hair out. Every touch of her hand was torture and at this point I’m freaking out inside. I just pictured a sink full of my hair falling out in batches. I knew I was burned and worse than I’ve ever been but I had no idea just how bad it was!  She blow dried and straightened my hair, another huge mistake and got right out of there!!! I was livid!!!

Now here’s where it gets worse, I wrap my hair that night and put on my head scarf as I should, pop a few pain killers and get to bed. I had to fall asleep with my face in my pillow because I couldn’t press my scalp, particularly the bottom half on my pillow because of the pain. Fast forward to the next morning and the horror was revealed. You’ve all seen a used/stained bandage right? That’s what my scarf looked like. My hair and the scarf were literally glued to the bottom half of my scalp. I had to peel the scarf off my hair and then when I touched my hair it felt like I had put in gel and it had partly hardened overnight. My scalp was oozing this sticky clear and reddish substance that I figured was a mix of puss and blood and my whole head was aching. I was absolutely mortified. Immediate tears because I got overwhelmed by a wave of pain and fear and I just couldn’t handle it. I love my hair and I was just picturing all of my hair falling out like the pics you find on the internet. I wish I still had photos to show you all but unfortunately my camera got stolen, but it was bad. Very very bad!

I went back to the salon that same day and explained to the manager what happened and she took a look at my hair. Somehow I kept my cool. I think it was because I was so scared and just needed help, but I was furious. Any way she took a look and apologised profusely, then did some treatment on my hair. I had to let my hair air dry and could not brush it until my scalp dried out, which took a number of days with my hair plastered to my scalp again. The burning sensation was gone, I guess the manager finally used a neutralizing shampoo on my scalp but it still hurt. A friend of mine suggested that I put vitamin E oil on the burns while I try to treat my scalp and I did so religiously. It saved my hair and scalp.

hair-damage2

Since that time I’ve struggled with my scalp a lot. The bottom half is very sensitive and I would get a lot of sores on my scalp, especially when I braided my hair. I made the mistake of relaxing after about 9months post burn which was dumb!! I really should have left my scalp to heal but I didn’t know any better. Now that I’ve been doing more research on damaged scalps I’ve been using a mixture of aloe vera and vitamin e and it has worked wonders! I also decided to texlax and refrain from relaxing when I feel that my scalp isn’t healthy enough. For example I was due for my first texlax in Feb this year but I only did it in March because I was still developing sores after I took out my braids, so I went back to my aloe and vit e mix. Now I use my herbal Aloe vera JBCO! God’s gift to my scalp…. It increases thickness, promotes hair growth AND soothes and repairs my damaged scalp. I say damaged scalp because deep relaxer burns can take years to recover from.

A healthy scalp is EVERYTHING ladies. Please never sacrifice your scalp for a relaxer, hairstyle or anything! If your scalp is damaged take the TIME to let it heal…THERE IS NO HEALTHY HAIR WITHOUT A HEALTHY SCALP and there’s no way around this fact. Give your scalp what it needs, clean it, feed it, massage it etc and it will grow you a bit of hair in return trust me! lol

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22 thoughts on “tellingMYhairstory: RELAXER BURN!!!

  1. I had the same horrible experience once and because of that, i’ve stuck to one hairdresser who knows my hair, scalp etc and takes extra good care of it…just like your beloved Mai Saru:)
    Thanks.

  2. lol Faye… me and my beloved Mai Saru!! hahaha .. but honestly it’s the best way to go, find someone who knows hair and knows YOUR hair then stick with them. @ladystature I wish I was natural… I tried it but I have a very tender scalp so doesn’t work out too well. If I had it my way I would stay off chemicals 100%… I texlax now so burns are very minimal if any but my scalp has not fully recovered so I take extra care …

    • I didn’t even know her name and she almost cost me my hair! gosh!!! lol…I really hope worse hasn’t happened to others :-l you really come to realize that a healthy scalp is everything!!

  3. Oh my goodness. I am so glad I have stopped relaxing. Whether one’s scalp is healthy or not it is just not worth the inevitable skin damage. Those chemicals should not go anywhere near any living thing. Thank you for the reminder 🙂

    • Lol Nomzi! I’m still traumatised to this day and you would think I would never relax again but alas! lol texlaxing makes me feel a whole lot better about my chemical use though… I don’t get burns anymore because I base my scalp in excess and limit my processing time to 15mins TOPS without touching my scalp…or very little…However I still dream of being natural…!! *sigh

      • And you have a wonderful body of hair. To dream of. I hope that you will one day see that your natural hair will not make you lose true love, lose a job, lose a good friend, lose respect or anything else that you may be afraid of losing. It is healing and empowering. Enjoy the rest of your week and thanks for the response 🙂

      • Lol… I actually transitioned for 2years, big chopped and was natural in 2010 … I LOVE natural hair…however naturally I have a VERY tender scalp so the pain from combing etc compromises my scalp health. texlaxing was my resort and so far so good 🙂

      • Just had a look at texlaxing. I wish I had done that instead of relaxing my hair all of these years. Less harsh all around. Now I know what texlaxing is. Thank you. Enjoy the rest of your weekend. Nomzi 🙂

      • Hello Kunyadi 🙂

        Just started a blog dedicated to poetry and social commentary. Do have a look should you get the chance. Busy relaxing in the winter holidays. Enjoy the rest of your week. Kind regards, Nomzi 🙂

  4. That’s awful! What I don’t understand is why you put braids in knowing your condition. Plus also relax you hair again! Sores and an oozing scalp is a big indicator to not put braids in again never mine a relaxer!

  5. right now……a few days to christmas…your experience is what i have right now just like you my scalp is oozing,my hair is plastered to my scalp and my pillow case is so stained from d fluid from my hair .Am so sad,please what did you do to heal and treat your damaged scalp…. please help me….get back to me as soon as you get this…..thank you…
    ..by the way you have a great hair perhaps if my hair heal i would love to grow my hair

  6. right now……a few days to christmas…your experience is what i have right now just like you my scalp is oozing,my hair is plastered to my scalp and my pillow case is so stained from d fluid from my hair .Am so sad,please what did you do to heal and treat your damaged scalp…. please help me….get back to me as soon as you get this…..thank you…
    ..by the way you have a great hair perhaps if my hair heal i would love to grow my hair…..sorry the first email was WRONG

    • hey girl! oh no, sad to hear about your hair but stay positive! ok here’s a quick breakdown of what I did:

      – I went back to the hair salon and made them wash my scalp again with neutralizing shampoo. this is a must! the lady also used another treatment not sure what it was but I think it correct the pH on the scalp. she was very gentle the whole time. afterwards we put my hair in a loose bun and just let it air dry.

      – bought pure vitamin e oil and applied that daily to the affected area nothing else, gently with my fingertips.

      – I did not touch my hair or brush my hair, only gentle finger combing when necessary.

      – I started wearing my hair down to allow some air to reach my scalp.

      – when my scalp started to dry out I did not pick at the scabs (sounds gross but it happens)

      -you can also apply aloe vera gel to your scalp to help the healing.

      – do not relax until your scalp is fully healed. this may take months! so be ready.

      Hope this helps!

      ps you said something about an email? did you send me one?

  7. Hi kundayi
    I have been suffer from this since my last hair relax, those scar in your scalp did it heal or is it there permanently? Thanks

    • Hi Carl
      I’ve noticed that the bottom of my scalp will get irritated often and is a lot more sensitive than the rest of my scalp so i use jbco with aloe vera, vitamin e or aloe vera juice. relaxer burns will always take time to heal. i was lucky i did not have permanent damage. if possible you must go and see a dermatologist or trichologist for your scalp.

  8. Omg! That experience was just crazy. I’m glad you spoke up for yourself because the damage could have been a lot worse! I have a question however, did you find that the hair that grew from the damage areas had a different texture or was more brittle? If so, for how long? I am in the process of transitioning, and while relaxed I burned every time in the same spots. My hair in those spots has grown out… Not right (rough, brittle, and unruly) … and I just know it’s from previous, repeated scalp burns. I never really gave my scalp a chance to heal either.

    • Hi TinaAnn sorry for such a late reply! I was lucky and my hair did grow back from those spots but i definitely feel like it grows back thinner 😦 and my scalp tends to flare up alot at the base where the most damage was. i know it will be a continuous process for some time to fully recover my scalp health given i burned so much over the years before that incident. I jbco with aloevera and also vitamin e oil on a regular basis so improve my scalp health ! hope this helps :-*

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