Editors Pick, Hair & Beauty

The Truth Behind Texturizers and Texlaxing

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Aggggghhhh! You might be hollering this in the morning while staring at your natural hair, wondering what in the world you’re going to do with it today. Or maybe it’s the other way around? Perhaps your over your slick, relaxed bob and want to transition back to the crown of natural curls you haven’t seen since…birth? Well, even if you have the sticky urge to slap that creamy crack back on your scalp be cautious. There may be an alternative route: the texturizer.

You’ve probably heard of these right? But what exactly is a texturizer? And can it help you?

Virgin Hair Bundle from Remy KissIf you want to be chemical free, then steer clear of these products. Texturizers are simply mild relaxers that are designed to loosen curls rather than permanently straighten the hair. There’s a plus in that: it can make your hair easier to manage. However, just like relaxers, they contain those similar heart-wrenching ingredients that might be driving you away: sodium hydroxide (lye) and  calcium hydroxide (no-lye). Texturizers are relatively safer than relaxers because they are left on the hair for a shorter amount of time.

So where do issues arise? Texturizers work well on short hair. That’s why you’ll see some guys rocking the S-Curl after a good texturizer (yep, some boys use chemicals too.). Texturizers will give the hair more of a wave pattern and loosen a curly afro. But with longer hair, texturizers can honestly be a go or no-go.

Sometimes it can be difficult to get a uniform texture with each touch-up. Just imagine one stylist leaving it on for five minutes and then the next one leaving it on for eight. Much can occur over the course of three minutes. Moreover, If one stylist decides to do your whole head at once, the areas that endure the texturizer the longest are more likely to come out straighter than you realize. The key thing to texturizers is the application process: how you do it and how long you leave it on. Most stylists recommend parting into four sections and doing each section separately.

Also, if you have kinky curls, they may not become wavy, but rather turn into a dry, damaged mess. You can’t make your hair jump from 4c to 3a with a texturizer. If this is what your thinking, then don’t attempt.

What about texlaxing you ask? Texlaxing is when you under process your hair with a full on relaxer. By underprocessing we mean, leaving the product on for a short amount of time to not experience the full affect of permanently straightening the hair. To get looser curls this way or wavier hair, people often mix the relaxer with a base, such as olive oil, to slow down the processing time. There are varying degrees to which your hair can turn out depending on the application — very tight (10%) or extremely loose (90%).

 

The biggest con to this option is the same as the texturizer — you could ultimately end up with different textures of hair if you’re not wise about the application. If you overprocess your hair (leave the product on and it straightens) then there is absolutely nothing you can do about it to revert back to your curly hair. Except cut it off. And no one wants to roll around with a multi-textured hair or with strands that are half curly and straight. Don’t try to apply your own texlaxer unless you strand test or know a stylist who is skilled at doing so. Seriously. Go to a stylist who knows EXACTLY what she’s doing. Because some really don’t know and will eat your money and leave with you a bad batch of hair.

A bit scary to think about, huh? If you’re already natural and thinking you can handle it, be patient and give your hair time. You can easily straighten with hot tools and other methods that won’t permanently alter your hair and all your hard work. And if you’re transitioning, consider a big chop. If you do decide to take this route of texturizing and texlaxing, be very cautious and think your decision through wholeheartedly before doing so. You can only go forward and not back.

Texturizers 101

The Pros and Cons of Texlaxed Hair

Relaxed Hair Vs. Texlaxed Hair

My Relaxed to Texlaxed Hair Journey from SL to MBL

Relaxer or Texturizer on Natural 4B/4C Hair?

 

Filed under: Editors Pick, Hair & Beauty

70 Comments

  1. I’ve tex ! Wanted 3c hair but all I got was slightly softer 4c!!! Mmmmm oh dear !

  2. Sandra says

    ENJOYED the video presentation. I am transitioning now, but have no idea what I am going to do with my hair once it grows to a presentable length. right now it is still short and I am not ready for the itty bitty afro. So, wearing wigs, weaves . . . . . . I guess I’ll make the decision soon . .. .

  3. oyinkan says

    thanks for all the info, which do you think is better for texlaxing? a relaxer or texturiser? thanks

    • Bauce says

      Texturizers! They are milder relaxers. The danger of using a full relaxer is that you may leave it on too long and overprocess your hair.

  4. lady dac says

    Had a text done and 4 days later my hair is dry and no curls.what can I do.

    • Bauce says

      Hi Lady Dac! It is probable that you may have overprocessed your hair. I would see a hairstylist to see what can be done. Best of luck!

  5. TNique says

    Just did a texturizer on my very curly/coily natural hair. I think I made a very good decision

    • Bauce says

      How did it come out TNique? Can you share what your hair pattern is (3a, 4b, etc) and what were your results? We’re sure other readers would love to know!

  6. MonicaPrinceFam says

    I wear a texturizer in my hair and it went from wavy fro to the ringlets I wanted. My second application also turned out well. But the longer my hair gets I feel like am gambling with the outcome.

  7. I have 4a/3c hair but my sides were 4b, very tight curls. I wanted to loosen that bit to match the rest of my hair

    Big mistake!!!
    Now I have 3a hair on the sides :( :'( want to cry every time I see my hair. Wish I hadn’t. Plus it’s deff weaker. Can’t wait to grow it out and chop it. Any tips on how to care for texturized hair?

    • Bauce says

      Lisa! Sorry you had such trouble with the texturizer. Did you do it yourself or see a professional? The tough thing about texturizers is that it can be hard to get the right blend each time. The best way to care for texturized hair is the same as you would your natural hair: avoid heat and styles that could cause breakage. You should also be wary of the line of demarcation when the hair begins to grow out.

    • I have texturized my hair for year. Don’t panic about the sides. The great and not so great thing about a texturizer is that the hair does revert slightly after a week or 2. So your 3a curl texture will become somewhat more tighter after a while. In the mean time wash it with mild shampoo and condition it (the sides of your hair) that will help make it revert. You should do it every couple of days until you notice the curl pattern tightening.

      • Bauce says

        Thanks, KC for sharing your experience! :) I’m sure our readers truly do appreciate it.

  8. I did a texturizer and regretted it ! Worst mistake ever ! I had 3c hair that was full with a lot of body. I was Natural for 4 years when I made the fateful decision November 2013 to add a texturizer. I used the kiddie’s one..read up all about texturizing and thought it would allow my curls to “flow” and less tangling. WRONG !!! My hair is weak, the girls look wack, there is no body, and I have to SLOB on a GLOB of curling cream to even get a curl. Mind you, I only had it in for 5 mins ! Sooooo…if you have been growing your natural hair for a while and think texturizing will give you length and a better curl…DON”T DO IT. To each his own…but I wouldn’t recommend it :(

    • dang! that’s it, just FIVE mins?!? and it was enough to do all that? that’s scary, because that’s the recommended leave-in time. i don’t even know how one could manage to take only five minutes to distribute it all evenly through the hair, which is why i’m too scared to give it a try. it takes me about 35 minutes just to dye all of my hair, and even then i still end up missing the roots here and there. *shudder*

  9. Don’t do it, please. Worse decision I ever made. 2 years of growing my natural hair and ruined it.

    • chanelle says

      I been natural 2 yrs as well and the other day I used a text and today I think I might cry about it. I liked it for a couple days. But it’s official I think I damaged my hair

  10. Ruby says

    I’m 23 and have been texturising my hair since I was 17, & I have to say it was the best decision ever!! First of all I’ve never done it myself, I’ve always gone to a hair salon (the same hair salon), as your hairdresser will assess your hair to see if your hair will be able to handle the texturiser. I wanted my hair to become more manageable as it was too much for me to handle at that young age. My hair has never been healthier. As long as you look after your hair and get a regular treatment there shouldn’t really be a problem.

  11. KeeKee says

    I have 4c hair which is a twa due to growing out my undercut side cut from last year. I’ve worn perms ever since I can remember & I am in the process of going natural again. Any tips on making my hair more manageable?

  12. Mimi says

    How long do you leave the texlaxer in to go from a 4c to a 3c or 3a

    • BauceMag says

      Very small amount of time, Mimi – no longer than 15 mins max for coarse hair!

  13. Cynthia says

    Hi there i’m thinking of texturizing my hair. the thing is that my hair was very weak because i wore relaxers almost all my lifeso i had to chop it all off. it grew a little but im scared that if a i do it it will get damaged, can anyone please help me

  14. Ebony Beauty says

    I have been texlaxing my 3c/4a/4b hair since June of 2014. My reason for doing so was due to the amount of damage I had been doing to my hair. Let me explain.

    I began transitioning in March 2012. I finally big chopped in September 2013. It seemed after big chopping the behavior of my hair changed and the things that worked for my transitioning hair left my natural hair a hot tangled mess. It wasn’t long that I realized it took me 3 hours to detangle, 4 hours for twist or braid-outs, and despite my best efforts split ends were ravaging my head. And most importantly my excited for the natural hair journey had all but died.

    After much inner debate (with myself), outer debate (with friends), & tons of research I decided to texlax. What I think most ladies thinking of texlaxing/texturizing should consider is not only the current condition of your hair but if you were once relaxed how your hair behaved then as well. My hair has always been thick and resilient. I always had long semi-healthy hair unless I decided to have it cut. And by no means did I take care of my hair. I believe my family genes contributed to my good fortune there.

    Anyways, my boyfriend and I geared up for the process. I ended up getting the Mizani butter blends for fine/color treated hair because it already has oils in the relaxer. I did a strand test for 3, 5, & 7 minutes. 6 minutes was perfect. We started at the crown of head (it’s the thickest) working from the ends to the roots. Then my sides had more of the 4b texture so they went next. And my edges were last. It came out wonderfully. However as I mentioned before I have resilient hair and it seemed after some protein my hair was like ha! I did a corrective texlax a month later. And no one can tell I am put any chemicals at all in my head. I can though. It’s easier to de tangled. Takes about 30-45 minutes. Some of the volume is gone. And my 4b hair is now 3c/4a.

    Everyone is different but do your research and no matter what you decide…blessings your way.

    • Bauce says

      Thank you Ebony for sharing your story! We hope other readers find value in it. :)

  15. Jane Doe says

    I have really soft 4b hair (coils only come out when I put a lot of gel in it and when they do they are really small) how long should I leave the texturizer in to get a curlyafro like the woman with the brown hair on the picture of the “African pride” texturizer box. Also do you know any links of texturizer 4b hair.

  16. Jane Doe says

    Thanks for the tip about density, my hair is really thick o had no idea that would be an element in getting good results when texturizing. Thanks for the quick reply by the way I’ve been thinking about texturizing for years.

    • Bauce says

      Absolutely. The density of your hair is important as the thicker it is the more processing time it may take to get the texturizer through in an even fashion. This means you may benefit from having a professional texturize your hair that can move with the correct speed and accurately apply the texturizer throughout your hair. We hope you’ll share BAUCE Mag with your friends!

  17. Angelica says

    I have type 3C hair. I would LOVE to have 3A/3B hair, so I’ve been thinking about getting a texturizer. My hair is extremely curly and I would like to loosen them because it’s difficult trying to “tame” my hair when I attempt to wear it down. It dries and gets “poofy” no matter how much gel I put in it, so I wear it in a ponytail the majority of the time, but I believe it’s time for a change! :) Any advice or suggestions? I would greatly appreciate it!!!

    • Bauce says

      Hi Angelica! Curly hair can be tough but love your curls! A texturizer can help to soften your curls, but I think you should definitely speak with a professional stylist before doing so. Over application can damage your hair or make it straighter (looser) than you want it to be. Best of luck, lady!

    • Hi, I have the same poofy hair. I can’t wear it down regardless of all the curling, creams and gel. I get a 2 foot dry afro. Did you texturize? How did it go? I’ve been sporting a natural pony tail for. 2yrs now and I really want to change that.

  18. Lilly says

    Last month, my hair stylist convinced me to texturise the leave out section of my hair for a weave. That was the worst decision ever! I have been left with a two hair textures – my curly fro and a bone straight relaxed-looking section. She tells me it would revert back to curly with time, but I’m not so sure. I’ve put my hair into a kinky twist for now. Can texturised hair revert from straight to curly?

  19. Anjay says

    Hi Bauce,my hair type is 4c and the porosity is high. I have a short natural hair with no style to fit. The hair is full and always look dry. I spray it like 20 times in a day and it dried up immediately. Pls for how long should I leave the texturizer on?

    • Bauce says

      Hi Anjay! No longer than 8-10 minutes but we strongly advise you see a professional for an even application!

  20. sandycheeks says

    I have 4a/4b very thin hair and I have been natural for 5 years with only 10inches of growth. My hair sheds a lot and now that I see it grows slowly I’m getting bored and getting tired of the maintenance. I decided to put on a texturizer and it came out bone straight lol. I wasn’t really surprised because I have fine hair. I don’t want to big chop again so I will just maintain my straight hair and hopefully it’ll grow better with less shedding.

  21. chasity says

    I have relaxed hair. but the last time I went for a relaxer they didnt relax all of my new growth. now i have (starting from root since i am due for another relaxer): new growth-relaxed-new growth- relaxed. all on one hair strand! combing it through drives me insane became once i get to the middle i encounter the new growth that wasnt relaxed, and i have thick long hair. I was considering getting a texturizer to help straighten the middle of my hair strands (so basically texturizing my whole head. any ideas? is this a bad move? my only fear is having it on the already relaxed part of the hair strand…

    • Bauce says

      Hi Chasity! We’re sorry that your last hair treatment didn’t go so well – but we wouldn’t recommend texturizing the middle of your hair – a texturizer is meant to soften curls not straighten it. This may sound extreme, but a hair cut may be the best option! You definitely don’t want to have strands with two different textures – the line of demarcation between curly and straight hair is very weak and could leave your hair damaged. Starting over may be your best bet (unless you can find a stylist who can skillfully apply a relaxer to the areas that are not straight.)

  22. I have a 4c hair. I want to make it softer and straighter. But looking at the reviews and experiences of your readers, it seems that this doesn’t really work that well for 4c hair? What will be the reasonable expectation for someone with 4c hair who wants to try this at home?

    • Bauce says

      Hi Donna! Texturizers do work for 4c hair but it will not transform the hair dramatically. 4c curls are often softened to a 4b texture; your curls still remain very small but are easier to comb through. So if you are looking for a texture softner this will do the trick – however if you are looking for a texturizer to give you big, thick coils (similar to a 4a or 3c texture) then don’t get your hopes up, as texturizers will only slightly lift your hair by a grade or two. Hope this helps!

  23. christina says

    I’m really concerned about over processing should I rinse out the texturizer once I get the desired curl pattern? If not how will I know if my hair is being over processed?

    PS I did a test stand with normal strength s curl on my 4b hair, smoothed my hair until I saw a loose wave and then let it sit. After I had a very loose 3c curl that went to 4a This all took 20 minutes from start to finish, is that too much time?

  24. My daughter is 17 and we have been struggling with her hair since age 4. I don’t know her curl pattern/number but, it is super tight and thick. I just cut it all off tonight because it was a mess. She has been wearing wigs lately and hasn’t permed in 4 months. You literally can’t comb it without putting it in sections. I want to use a texturizer in her hair but I know it will take longer than 5-10 minutes to even comb it through. Help!

    • Bauce says

      Hi Delia! We recommend that you see a licensed professional to apply the texturizer to her hair. They may be able to have two people work on her hair at the same time. Also – talk with your daughter to find out if this is what she wants? There are also natural hair stylists that may be able to make additional recommendations for your daughter’s hair that does not require harmful chemicals. Best of luck!

  25. Tabby says

    Greetings Beautiful Ones,
    I wear braids all the time because I’m constantly in and out of the gym. I was sick of my recently natural treads not holding braids as long as my relaxed hair did. I was getting my hair braided every week and a half as opposed to every three weeks. We all know the deal with braiding relaxed hair!!! So I grabbed a “Just For Me” texturing system, mixed it with pure coconut oil and raw Shea Butter…. Lord and behold!!!! Perfect. My braids hold longer without the breakage. I even get to keep my edges…..

  26. Thinking of having a texturizer applied to my 5 year olds hair to be able to manage it better. Is this too young??? The stylist assured me it wouldn’t damage her hair.

  27. Brittany says

    I have a 3c /4a curl pattern and my hair is SUPER thick . In the past I did relaxer because my mom couldn’t tame my hair and they broke my hair off. However, I believe my hair broke off because I didn’t know how to take care of it . So, now that I have been a natural for 4-5 years I have learned a lot about taking cafe of your hair. Do you think I should texlaxing ? I’m looking for a 3a curl pattern.

    • Bauce says

      Hi Brittany! A texturizer can help soften the hair and make it easier to comb through however we suggest you consult a hairstylist about the best way to apply it to your hair. Texturizers are known to make some women’s hair extremely dry! :)

  28. Jannet says

    Hi lady’s, I’ve texturised my hair couple of weeks ago and my hair is ridiculously dry I probably over done it but also the results didn’t impress me as my hair texture didn’t change much, I’ve been using doo groo products but my hair not showing any improvements plus is breaking a lot. I really don’t know what to do anymore

    • Bauce says

      Hi Jannet! We are sorry that the texturizer produced such results. Often these chemicals can have extreme drying agents. Our advice would be to either investigate the use of products that can retain more oil in your hair to keep it moisturized (Shea Moisture’s RAW SHEA BUTTER RECONSTRUCTIVE FINISHING ELIXIR is one of our favorites >> http://www.sheamoisture.com/Raw-Shea-Butter-Reconstructive-Finishing-Elixir-_p_778.html) or to cut it off and start over with just your natural hair and test products that further enhance your curl!

  29. Reshawn says

    Hi. I decided to use a texturizer on my hair two days ago. My hair is VERY thick and not easy to manage. I watched several youtube videos before deciding on a product. I used the African Pride 10 Minutes to Beautiful Multi-Length Texturizer. I had to use two of them since I have very thick 4-C hair texture. My hair is about the same length of the lady’s on the right side of the box. I followed the instructions in grave detail. I detangled and sectioned my hair to make the application process faster and easier. I only left it on my hair for the recommended time for my hair length and texture which was 15 minutes including the application process. Well, my hair didnt turn out anything like the lady’s on the box. It is softer and easier to comb. There is also a available lot less shedding. My hair is just extremely dry now even after applying a deep conditioning mask and greasing my scalp. My concern is, I think the product i used may have been old. This particular product is a no-mix product. The product was very thick and it was crusty and clumpy. I continued using it because I didnt know any better. I didnt know what it was supposed to look like. I really dont thinkIi had enough to apply over my whole head. So, I’ve said all of that to ask this: I want to try it again. How do I know if a product is old or expired? How soon can I try again? Do you recommend a particular product?

    • Bauce says

      Hi Reshawn! We are sad to hear that you had a terrible experience with the texturizer. You are right – crusty and clumpy products could be a sign that the product has been sitting on the shelf for months (if not years) and past its activation period. A good texturizer should be smooth and not show any signs of disintegration.

      We highly recommend you seek out a hairstylist to determine if a texturizer is the best tool for your hair. Texturizers are known to make hair a bit drier as it also makes the hair strand a bit more resistant. We recommend a less intense texturizer and you discussing with your hairstylist which creams you can add to your hair or texturizer to make it less harsh.

  30. Khaliya says

    I just did a chop a couple months back . And I love my curl pattern its a mix of 3c -4a and I think a little 4b . My tighter curls are in the front , I just want to loosen them a little , and on my edges to make them lay better . Not using it on my whole head . I would only leave the texturizing on for 5 minutes . And get a deep condition and dominican blow out the next day . Any advice .

    • Bauce says

      Hi Khaliya – we love that you are embracing your curls. Our advice would be for you to seek out a hair care professional to help you apply the texturizer. THey will best know how long to leave the texturizer on certain parts of your hair to achieve the desired effects.

    • Bauce says

      Hi Carmelia! We’d advise against that – all it would do is create a more resistant texture in your hair and weaken the line of demarcation between your texturized new growth and your relaxed hair. Our advice would be to grow out your relaxer a bit more and then cut it off and then apply a texturizer to your natural hair. Best of luck!

  31. 'Des says

    So I wish I read these comments before going ahead to use a texturizer on my hair. I’m so sad. After maintaining my natural hair for a whole year, it’s all straightened out now. Please will my hair go back to being natural? What can I do? Please help.

    • NaijaCurls says

      Giiirl I’m jealous,my hair is so thick that the texturizer didn’t work.But on a serious note,you will have to grow your hair out again as it seems as though you overprocessed your hairx

  32. NaijaCurls says

    Dear Bauce
    The texturizer did NOT work for me.I don’t know if my hair is the toughest in the world,but it sure feels like it.I can’t get a comb through my hair,I haven’t been able to do that since it was relaxed.I went natural and had my hair in cornrows with extensions.Then I saw the ‘Just for Me Texture’ and I saw many positive reviews so I got it.I applied it to my hair and I’m telling you now,after 16 minutes my hair hasn’t changed one bit.So we decided to go against instructions and try and comb my 4X hair.It started to look longer and I could see slow changes,roughly 40 minutes had gone.I SEVERELY overprocessed my hair yet it still went back to its extremely tightly-curled texture,just slightly softer.I’m thinking of applying the product again but I’m scared.Do you think that I should reapply the product?

    • Bauce says

      Hi NaijiaCurls! We are so sorry that you had this experience – but you should never allow a texturizer to sit on your hair for that long – as it is a chemical that is meant to be used for half the time of a relaxer; this is what results in overprocessing. We’d advise that you not add the texturizer again but first go and see a hair care professional to see what can be done, as texturizers can be tough to revert.

  33. Annette Timberlake says

    I have 4b hair type and I was wondering would a texturizer make my hair curlier? My roots are VERY unmanageable, and my hair does knot very easily. I’ve been natural for 2 years but mostly wear protective styles because me natural hair doesnt look good to me. I am hoping to change that with a texturizer. Your thoughts?

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