It feels like there are more and more articles focused on natural hair and less on relaxed hair. No matter the path you choose to follow, what really matters is how well you take care of your hair.

It’s all about knowing how to care for your relaxed hair by yourself and understanding your strands. With relaxed hair, the hair has been chemically processed and will require a different level of care than natural hair, and one thing is for sure if you want your hair to grow, it cannot be business as usual for your new hair.

We have 5 secrets to having longer relaxed hair. Oh and healthier too.

1. For a start, stop touching it

Leave your hair alone! It is time to drop that comb or brush. Yes, we know your hair feels silky smooth and all but excess combing or brushing can weaken the hair shaft over time and cause shedding and breakage. The less time one spends combing their relaxed hair the better it will look.

2. Frequency of relaxing

Relaxing your hair frequently or as soon as you feel undergrowth is doing more harm than good. Preferably, relax your hair just three times per year and if you can stretch it to two times a year, even better!

3. Stop switching relaxers

You should read your labels! You don’t have to be a chemistry major to realise that some compounds don’t mix well with others. If you must switch relaxers, make sure that the base chemicals are the same. When in doubt consult your stylist. Sometimes, they know better.

4. Keep it conditioned

All hair needs conditioning don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. However, not all conditioners were created equal, some have ingredients to coat the hair shaft and others were designed to go deep into the hair shaft.

Deep conditioners need heat to swell the hair shaft so that it can enter the hair and repair any nicks or scratches on the hair surface from within. On the other hand, regular conditioners coat the hair so that it is easy to handle and comb. It is better for you to condition your hair than to shampoo it. Be sure to deep condition every two weeks or at least once a month if longer relaxed hair is your goal!

5. Keep it moisturized

The gospel of moisture cannot be preached enough. However, many persons are unaware of the power of moisture for hair retention. Moisturized hair does not break as easily as dry or brittle hair. A good moisture balance is needed to retain hair growth.

A very good source of moisture for both inside and outside our bodies is water. If you are not drinking enough water your hair will get dry and brittle. Similarly, if you do not apply enough moisture to your hair it will get dry and break. Remember, moisture is not oil!