- Don't put heat on your hair unless it's been freshly shampooed and conditioned. For most women, that means only once per week.
- Apply a leave-in conditioner and thoroughly comb out your hair while it's still damp.
- To stretch out tight coils, apply wrap lotion and dry your hair in small to medium braids.
Total Styling Time: Approx. 3 hours
Step 1: Shampoo and condition your hair according to these instructions. Gently blot your hair dry with a hair towel.
Step 2: Prep your hair for the straightening process by applying a creamy leave-in conditioner that also offers heat protection. Nexxus Pro-Mend Leave-In Treatment, $9.99 is light, but rich.
Step 3: Using the end of a wide tooth comb, divide your hair into 6 to 10 sections. Secure each section with a jaw clip.
Step 4: Gently comb out each section. If your hair is difficult to comb, apply more leave-in conditioner. After each section has been thoroughly combed, apply a wrap or setting lotion. A good wrap lotion contains ingredients that help your hair stretch and stay moisturized. Try Creme of Nature Argan Oil Foaming Wrap Lotion, $5.99
Step 5: Braid each section to further stretch the hair out while it dries. Make sure to continue braiding to the very end of your hair so that your ends will be sleek.
Step 6: Air dry your hair for as long as possible. It's best to air dry instead of blow drying your hair.
*If you don't have time to air dry, sit under a bonnet dryer on low heat for approximately 30 minutes. You can also air dry for 15-20 minutes, then undo the damp braids and finish drying each section with a blow dryer on the low heat setting. Be careful not to over-dry your hair.
Step 7: Now, it's time to heat up your flat iron. A high-quality ceramic flat iron is the safest, most effective option for kinky-coily hair. The Remington Damage Therapy Straightener, $44.99 produces smooth, soft results every time. Make sure your flat iron has a temperature display and set it between 300˚ F and 350˚ F. Use just enough heat that you only need 1 or 2 passes to get the results you want.
Step 8: Gather the majority of your hair into 6 to 10 jaw clips, leaving a small section down in the very back. Make a horizontal part across the back of your head, near the base of your neck. Flat iron 1-inch sections working from left to right and bottom to top. Remember that direct heat can be damaging to your hair. Use the lowest heat setting and the least number of passes possible.
Be extra gentle with your hair throughout the week. Heat depletes your hair's internal moisture, so you must be extra careful to avoid breakage. Apply a small dab or light spray of a moisturizer to your hair once or twice a day, especially near the ends. At night, cover your hair with a satin scarf to keep it smooth and soft for up to 1 week.