Question: Are Texturizers a Good Way to Transition to Natural Hair?
Many women who decide to transition from relaxed hair to natural hair get frustrated at some point, particularly if they don't cut off all of their permed hair at once. However, even women who do the "big chop" can find their natural hair difficult to work with at times. Consider this: If you've had processed hair as long as you can remember, that's what you're used to styling on a daily basis, so natural hair can take some getting used to. But is a texturizer a good way to go from relaxed to natural?
If your eventual goal is to be free of texture-altering chemicals, then avoid texturizers as your hair grows out. Some companies tout their texturizers as "all natural" or say that the product will loosen your texture and make it more manageable. Texturizers do loosen your curl pattern, but they are chemicals, regardless of how many so-called natural ingredients are listed on the box.
Consider a texturizer to be "relaxer lite." Relaxers are designed to completely straighten the hair, while texturizers loosen curls, but in reality, they both contain the same straightening ingredients, either sodium hydroxide (lye) or calcium hydroxide (no-lye). What makes a texturizer seem less potent is the fact that it's left on the hair for a shorter period of time.
Texturizers work much better on short hair, so if you plan to sport a short style and you feel the need for more of a wave pattern than an Afro, a texturizer may be a good option. Your hair will be continually trimmed, allowing you to get rid of damage and not worry so much about matching your new growth to previously processed hair.
It's when you want longer hair that texturizers can be so hit-and-miss. It can be difficult, even for stylists, to maintain a uniform texture from touch-up to touch-up. Some strands of hair can straighten completely, while others stay wavy or curly. In some cases, kinks won't turn into waves, even with a texturizer: the hair may go from afro-textured to a dry, damaged mess instead. If some kind of curl pattern (S-shaped) isn't already present, you can't create it.
Bottom line: Anyone who wants truly natural hair should steer clear of texturizers, which will only prolong your journey to completely chemical-free tresses.