Friday, June 8, 2012

What is the bare minimum for a relaxer stretch?

I know, I know, my last couple of posts have been about heading back to the land of the short relaxer stretches. My intention was to hold out for 12 weeks, or 10 if push came to shove, so please ask me why I am on the LCHF looking at threads dealing with ladies who relax every 6 to 8 weeks? Yes, it's on my mind and I cannot shake it.

It is on my mind. I took out my cornrows to wash my hair and the same frustration I have been dealing with is there again. On the one hand, I recognise that I have a sufficient amount of new growth to prevent excessive overlapping of my relaxer (it is actually impossible to prevent overlap; you overlap when you smooth your relaxer) and yet, on the other hand I am torn as too frequent relaxing can cause thinning of the ends due to relaxer run-off. Therein lies my dilemma.

I am at the point where I just want to give in, throw in the towel and do my touch up. I feel like throwing caution to the wind. It could be due to the fact that I am tired of meeting the demands of my hair. I've been on my hair journey since January 2009 so we are talking close to 3 1/2 years, almost 200 weeks of washing my hair twice weekly. In all the time I have been on my journey, I must have missed 2 or 3 washes. I am back to my 2009 length, so I have nothing to really show (except photos) for all those years of effort, not to mention money spent. I am tired of always having to deal with two textures of hair. I just need a change.

So I am back to my original decision. I will be texlaxing at 8 weeks post. It seems to be the bare minimum period recommended for stretching your relaxer, the ideal being 10-12 weeks post. I swear though, if I stretch anymore my frustration with my new growth may lead to me taking extreme measures such as hacking off my texlaxed ends and rocking a TWA. However, given the fact that I don't think such a short cut would do anything to enhance my features, I am going to go down the route of more frequent relaxing. I am not really interested in being natural at this point in my life, I am just tired of the two textures.

So gasp if you must, I am in shock myself but there we have it. Hopefully I am not going to be blogging a few months from now rueing my decision. In any case even if I do regret it, I know I can always grow it back  After all if I went from SL to APL in about 6 months (even past APL in some areas), it's really not impossible to do it all over again. After all, it is just hair and it should not be frustrating me the way it has been of late.


  1. I really hope that you won't relax at 8 weeks but I do understand what you are going through. Have you tried using wigs? Something like a half wig or lace front may help you hold out a little bit longer.I hate using fake hair so I get fed up really fast. I knew even before I did my big chop that my hair was going to be a challenge because I have really thick hair and a sew in weave nor braids, was ever going to be an option for me. In the last few months I've tried half wigs, lace fronts and even made my own wigs. They all look great and very natural once you stick to realistic styles and length and the best part is that you have access to your real hair every day to do what you need to do. Give it a try if you haven't already.

  2. Hi Carolyn! I completely understand your experience. Since I've been relaxed I've had touch-ups every 6 weeks on the dot. When I started my hair journey I learned about stretching so now I touch-up every 7-8 weeks. Honestly, even 8 weeks is a challenge for me! I get a lot of new growth that I'm not used to handling, so when I get fed up I just get a relaxer. I don't think you should stress over it too much. As you learn how to deal with the new growth stretching longer should come easier. For now, I think you should focus on protecting the ends of your hair from relaxer run-out (like coating them in an oil) and protecting your scalp adequately from the chemicals. Don't feel guilty about giving in if you can't stretch any longer.

    1. Hi thanks for the comment. I have stretched 12 weeks, 16 weeks and I've even done a 6 month stretch. I think I'm just over stretching. Either I relax more often or I go back natural because I'm done with dealing with different textures.

  3. I think you should definitely do what works for YOU. There are plenty of women (especially on the hair forums) who relax every 6-8 weeks with beautiful heads of hair! There may be adjustments that you need to make in other areas of your regimen but if stretching for 10-12 weeks isn't working for you and your hair then you shouldn't do it!


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