Every once in a while, many of us naturals crave that bone straight, sleek look.
I’m not exempt from this rare craving. And when it hits, I begin watching YouTube videos on how other naturals are straightening their hair. One of the most popular straightening methods that I’ve seen naturals use is the silk press.
Every time I watch someone getting a silk press, I can’t help but cringe and say a quick prayer for their strands.
What’s a Silk Press?
A silk press is a method of heat styling that straightens even the curliest, most coarse, strands. The method is awesome from a visual standpoint, but it can damage your hair extensively.
There a variations of the silk press process, but it usually goes a bit like this:
- Your hair is washed and conditioned (hopefully deep conditioned) to prep it for the terror to come.
- If you are getting your hair done by a hair health conscious stylist, a heat protectant will be applied.
- Your hair is then blow dried (usually on high heat to get it as straight as possible).
- Your hair is flat ironed until it is bone straight.
Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Get a Silk Press
Heat Damage Risk
The extensive use of heat when doing a silk press has the potential to inflict damage onto your hair strands. If your hair is naturally curly and/or dry, it may be more vulnerable to heat damage than other hair types.
Split Ends and Structural Damage
Split ends come from hair manipulation, chronic dryness, and other hair abuse.
Silk presses require thorough detangling, blow drying, and flat ironing, all of which can put visible stress on your ends and hair shaft.
Luckily, there are other options. Read on for the alternatives.
What You Can Try Instead
There are several things that you can try which will give you the same result as a silk press.
Full Lace Wigs
Full lace wigs allow you to tuck away all of your natural hair. Simply choose the exact style that you want, throw that wig on top of your head, and slay. No damage whatsoever.
Just make sure that you are continuing to implement your natural hair routine. While your hair will be protected under the wig, if you neglect your hair by forgetting to wash and condition it on a regular basis, you hair can still suffer from dryness, split ends, and breakage.
Human hair bundles offer all of the benefits of full lace wigs. But what differentiates bundles from full lace wigs is the ability to make your own wig, customizing it perfectly to your own head and desired style.
Working with bundles, as you may be able to imagine, takes time, effort, and know-how. More on that in a future post.
Thanks for reading!