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The Best Hair Relaxersv

Carey Schaal
Written by Carey Schaal
hair relaxer

Silky, smooth tresses can be a head-turning feature for many, and with a good hair relaxer, achieving that sleek look is more attainable than ever. These top-tier products stand out for their straightening prowess, commitment to hair health, and versatility in catering to different hair textures and needs. In this buying guide, each product has been selected for its exceptional performance, ingredients that prioritize hair integrity, and rave reviews from users who have seen their hair transformed. As we unfold the secrets behind these revered formulas, you’ll discover how they provide both style and substance for a diverse array of consumers seeking that perfect balance between smoothness and strength.

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When taming curls and managing frizz, choosing the right hair relaxer can make all the difference. Whether you're a seasoned pro or new to the process, knowing what to look for in a quality relaxer is critical to achieving that sleek, smooth look without damaging your tresses. Let's dive into the nitty-gritty of finding the best hair relaxer for your locks.

Type of Relaxer

There are mainly two types of hair relaxers: lye and no-lye. Lye relaxers contain sodium hydroxide, which can be more effective on coarser hair but also more caustic and potentially damaging. No-lye relaxers, on the other hand, are gentler due to their calcium or guanidine hydroxide content but may lead to calcium buildup over time if not thoroughly rinsed. Your hair's texture and sensitivity will dictate which type will work best for you. Thin or sensitive scalps usually fare better with no-lye formulas, while thicker, more resistant hair may require the strength of a lye relaxer.


Hair relaxers come in different strengths: mild, regular, and super. The rule of thumb here is to match the relaxer's power to your hair's resistance and texture. A mild strength relaxer is your safest bet if you have fine, color-treated, or damaged hair. For medium-texture hair, regular strength will typically suffice. Super strength relaxers are best reserved for very coarse and resistant hair. Remember, using too strong of a relaxer for your hair type can lead to over-processing and damage, so choose wisely.

Conditioning Properties

Healthy hair is the ultimate goal, so don't skimp on a relaxer with built-in conditioning agents. Ingredients like olive oil, shea butter, or keratin can protect and nourish your hair during the relaxing process. These elements help to replenish moisture and strengthen hair fibers, which is critical since the relaxing process can be quite drying. A good hair relaxer will straighten your curls and leave your hair feeling soft, manageable, and resilient.

Scalp Sensitivity

If you have a sensitive scalp, you'll need to pay extra attention to the formula of your hair relaxer. Some relaxers are specifically designed for sensitive scalps and contain soothing ingredients to reduce irritation. Always conduct a patch test before using a new relaxer to avoid an adverse reaction. This small step can save you from many discomforts and ensure your hair-relaxing experience is as pleasant as possible.

Brand Reputation

In the realm of hair relaxers, brand reputation is not something to overlook. Reputable brands have a track record of success and a loyal following for a reason. They've fine-tuned their formulas to provide effective results while minimizing potential damage to your hair. Do your research, read reviews, and perhaps even consult a professional hairstylist to find a brand that is well-regarded and aligns with your hair care needs.

Price vs. Quality

While reaching for the cheapest option on the shelf regarding hair relaxers is tempting, the adage "you get what you pay for" often rings true. Investing in a higher-quality product can result in healthier, happier hair in the long run. That said, the most expensive option isn't always the best either. Look for a relaxer with a good balance of quality ingredients and affordability. Don't be afraid to spend more on a product that will treat your hair right.

Ease of Use

Lastly, consider how user-friendly the hair relaxer is. If you're applying it at home, you'll want a product with clear instructions and a straightforward application process. Some relaxers come in kits with everything you need, from protective gloves to neutralizing shampoo and conditioner. These kits can be a godsend for first-timers or those who prefer a hassle-free experience.


Selecting the best hair relaxer for your mane is a crucial decision that shouldn't be taken lightly. By considering the type, strength, conditioning properties, scalp sensitivity, brand reputation, price versus quality, and ease of use, you'll be well on your way to achieving the sleek, smooth hair you desire. Remember to treat your hair carefully throughout the relaxing process, and always follow up with a deep conditioning treatment to keep your locks in tip-top shape. Happy relaxing!

Comparing the Best Hair Relaxers of 2024


SoftSheen-Carson Hair Relaxer


  • For fine/regular hair
  • Includes Silk Keratin
  • Moisture Hair Crème


  • Potential scalp burns

The SoftSheen-Carson Hair Relaxer is a game-changer for those seeking a mild yet effective solution. This hair relaxer uses a gentle touch on finer hair types. Your hair will feel pampered and nourished with Shea Butter, Jojoba, and Avocado oils.

The promise of maintaining the five signs of healthy hair – moisture, shine, strength, softness, and body – is not taken lightly with this product. It's a breath of fresh air to see a brand that stands firmly on the premise of beauty without compromise. This relaxer helps keep your hair in top condition. The benefits combined with high-quality ingredients makes this our top overall pick. 


TCB Hair Relaxer


  • Protects scalp
  • Long-lasting
  • Versatile use


  • Mild for strong hair

The TCB Hair Relaxer with Protein and DNA Super can bring that professional salon quality right into the comfort of your home. This 15. oz jar of magic answers all your hair needs, providing a luxurious, laminating solution that will turn heads.

From the first application, you can feel the difference as it infuses your hair with proteins, strengthening each strand while relaxing the curls. The blend with DNA Super smoothes the kinks, leaving your hair incredibly soft and pliable. Best of all, it's a no-base formula, which means it's gentle on your scalp and doesn't require that extra layer of protection that other relaxers do. You're left with hair that's easier to manage and has a noticeable shine and body. 


Motions Mild Hair Relaxer 15oz


  • Enriched with natural humectants
  • Renders hair straight
  • Imparts a shiny finish


  • Less straightening

The Motions Hair Relaxer understands that strength doesn't have to mean harshness. Its gentle formula works wonders, giving you that sleek, straight look you'll love while keeping hair breakage to a minimum.

Let's be real: retouching hair can feel like flirting with disaster, but not with this little gem. Not only is it less damaging, but it also maintains the health and vibrancy of the hair. It's the best pal for anyone looking to extend the life of their relaxed hair without inviting unnecessary damage. 


ORS Hair Relaxer


  • Mild on hair
  • Softens hair texture
  • Olive oil enriched


  • Can under-process hair

The ORS Hair Relaxer turns your hair into silk without a fuss. Infused with olive oil and lanolin, it's like a spa treatment, and a hair relaxer in one. It's designed to carefully straighten your hair while keeping the dreaded over-processing monster at bay, leaving your hair not just straight, but healthy-feeling and oh-so-touchable.

This hair relaxer conditions while it works its magic. So, you're getting a one-step process to fabulous straight hair and a good dose of nourishment along the way. Perfect for those with fine to medium hair textures – it's like the best of both worlds. With this pick, you'll step out with hair that's not just manageable but has that soft, silky vibe.


Hawaiian Silky Hair Relaxer


  • Pleasant scent
  • Softens hair
  • Adds manageability


  • Not a complete kit

The Hawaiian Silky Hair Relaxer is a no-base relaxer that caters to those with medium to coarse hair textures looking for that perfect balance between manageability and strength. It reduces the prep time—no need for that tedious base creme application. The protective oils are already blended in with the relaxer creme, which is a relief because it means you don’t have to worry about scalp irritation or burning, which can be a real concern with relaxers.

Now, let’s talk about the effectiveness. Regular touch-ups maintain the perfect texture so your hair stays cooperative, day in and day out. Whether after a completely straight look or just aiming to tame some unruly curls, this relaxer could be your new go-to. 

People Also Ask

  • Q: What is a hair relaxer?

    A:A hair relaxer is a type of chemical lotion or cream that straightens curly or tightly coiled hair by breaking down the hair's natural structure. It's typically used to achieve a smoother, straighter hair texture.

  • Q: How do I use a hair relaxer?

    A:To use a hair relaxer, section your hair and follow the instructions on the product label carefully. Apply the relaxer to the roots of your hair and comb it through to the ends, avoiding contact with the scalp as much as possible. Leave it on your hair for the recommended time then rinse it out thoroughly and follow up with a neutralizing shampoo to halt the chemical process.

  • Q: Can hair relaxers damage my hair?

    A:Yes, hair relaxers contain chemicals that can damage your hair if not used correctly. Overprocessing by leaving the relaxer on too long, or applying it to already damaged or weak hair can lead to breakage, dryness, and scalp irritation.

  • Q: How often should I relax my hair?

    A:Relaxing your hair every 6-8 weeks is typically recommended, but this can vary based on your hair's growth rate and texture. It's important not to apply relaxers to hair that has already been relaxed to avoid damage.

  • Q: What should I do if I experience burning or discomfort during the relaxing process?

    A:If you experience burning or discomfort, rinse the relaxer out of your hair immediately with warm water, and then wash your hair with a neutralizing shampoo. Seek medical attention if the irritation persists.

  • Q: Can I color my hair after using a hair relaxer?

    A:It's generally advised to wait at least two weeks before or after relaxing your hair to color it, as doing both processes too close together can cause significant damage to your hair.

  • Q: How can I maintain my hair after using a relaxer?

    A:To maintain your relaxed hair, use a deep conditioner regularly, minimize heat-styling tools, protect your hair from harsh weather, and keep your hair moisturized with appropriate hair care products designed for chemically treated hair.

  • Q: Is it necessary to go to a professional hairstylist to apply a hair relaxer?

    A:While it is possible to apply a hair relaxer at home, it is recommended to have the process done by a professional hairstylist, especially if you are unfamiliar with the process. Professionals are trained to apply the product safely and effectively to minimize damage.

  • Q: Are there any natural or less harsh alternatives to traditional hair relaxers?

    A:Yes, there are natural and less harsh alternatives, such as keratin treatments or texturizers, that can soften curls without completely straightening the hair. These treatments may be less damaging and are often considered safer for hair over time.

  • Q: What should I do if my hair is breaking or shedding after a relaxer treatment?

    A:If your hair is breaking or shedding after a relaxer treatment, it's important to stop using any chemical treatments immediately and consult with a professional hairstylist for a treatment plan. You may need a protein treatment, trim, or a specific hair care regimen to help restore your hair's health.

Why trust Us

At Us Weekly, we aim to inform readers to make smart purchasing decisions, saving you both time and money. Our editors are obsessed with finding products in a variety of categories from fashion and beauty, to home and fitness.

We try various products, so we can recommend our favorites, and we also summarize feedback and data from other customers. Data, like product reviews and ratings, helps us recommend the best product choices for individual price points and needs.

On top of that, we highlight unique product features for special use cases, ingredients preferences, and more. We strive to make sure you are discovering new products that can make your life easier, while keeping you up to date with the best product choices for types of items you already know and love.

Carey Schaal

By Carey Schaal

With a background in interior design and business and a passion for beauty, Carey combines her education and experience to reach a diverse readership. She enjoys curating content that helps consumers discover life-enriching products, whether essential serums or a variety of unique home accents. When she isn’t writing, she’s likely preparing a meal with her family or perfecting her skincare routine.


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