Tips for Relaxer Stretching

Now that I’m 9 months post in my latest relaxer stretch I think it’s about time I share how I do it.  Getting here (or hair LOL) was no easy feat.  It’s been about 3 years since I’ve been on my healthy hair journey.  I prefer health over length so when I start to see excessive shedding or tangling during my relaxer stretches I’m quick to trim off those tangled relaxed ends and keep it moving but what about all that new growth?  It can be a struggle to maintain thicker tresses during relaxer stretching.  I’ve also endured some setbacks (breakage, excess shedding, thinning edges) that I’ve shared with you guys throughout the journey but this has been my most successful relaxer stretch to date.

I’ve gradually increased my relaxer stretches from 3 months, to 5-, 6-, 7 month increments; each time getting properly acquainted with my hair and learning to listen to its needs.  When my hair is dry I know I need moisture, so I’ll up the deep conditioning treatments and increase my moisturizing & sealing methods.  When my hair is feeling limp, I’ll throw in a protein treatment.  As stated previously, if I notice tangles (which happen more towards the ends of my hair because of the numerous lines of demarcations from previously relaxed hair) I’ll give it a trim.  Knowing what your hair needs while relaxer stretching can save lots of headaches; trust me from detangling sessions that used to last hours to now being about to complete a wash day in an actual day I’ve learned a lot about taking care of my hair during these stretches with minimal breakage.

So here to answer to the question, How do I do it? I’d like to share with you my Tips For Relaxer Stretching.  

Relaxer Stretching

Want to see these methods in action?? If you’d like some visuals, be sure to check out my Texlaxed Hair Journey Playlist over on the Kay’s Ways YouTube channel.  Also let me know if you’d like me to go into more detail about any of these methods in a future post.

Are you currently practicing any of these methods?  I’d love to hear your ways of caring for your tresses, relaxed or not. Let’s chat in the comments or as always you can

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  • When I was relaxed, I had a trouble stretching my relaxer beyond six weeks. Anything longer than that resulted in shedding and hair loss. I maintained optimum health at six weeks as a self relaxer. Towards the end of the cycle, I would co-wash frequently and wear a bun.

    • Kay’s Ways

      Co washing is great. Buns are go-tos but my hair in the middle can’t take it especially being this far along in a stretch now (I’m almost 1 yr post, sorry for my late reply). I went through a lot of shedding during a stretch about 2 yrs ago but I realized my hair needed more protein which relaxed hair definitely needs. Do you use a good protein moisture balance with you conditioners?

  • Totally agree with that tip on detangling! Le sigh—Sometimes you can get away with it but most times—you can’t! I’ll never forget the wash day that I didn’t fully detangle then ended up having to cut out chunks of knots a week later because of it.

    Anywhos, thanks for sharing chica!

    • Kay’s Ways

      Yes the knots are the worst! My fingers stay in my head girl because 4 hours of detangling is not a good look. Thanks for another #WashDayExperience

  • These are really helpful tips. The longest I’ve stretched my hair is about 3 months at most.

    • Kay’s Ways

      Thanks Stacie so glad you liked them! 3 months is a perfect amount of time in between for you have a good amount of new growth for touch ups,

  • 9 months, thats amazing. My longest stretch has been 18weeks. Great tips!

    • Kay’s Ways

      Hey Tomi, thanks 😉 ! it wasn’t until yesterday that I realized this month will make a year. I don’t know if my hair is going to survive the heat but so far this has been working. If I can cut down to once or twice a year I’ll be happy

  • JoAnna Niles

    I used to stretch my relaxers to every 3-4 months. I didn’t follow these methods because I wasn’t doing my own hair anyway. lol These are really good tips for long term transitioners too.

    • Kay’s Ways

      Thanks Jo! True story because since it’ll be a year since I’ve relaxed I don’t know if I’m transitioning or not it depends how my hair act in this heat. I’m just going with the flow for now with the help of these tips.

  • The longest I had ever gone was 2 months. My natural hair texture was drastically different that I couldn’t deal with the two of them. When I finally decided to go natural I only had about 2-3 months of new growth. My hair tangled so bad I just cut it off. I’m terrible with patience.

    • Kay’s Ways

      Oh yeah the struggle with different textures is no joke. My fully relaxed ends get tangled so I trim little by little but then now it’s texlaxed hair with some super thick roots so I have 3 to worry about. The struggle is real that’s why I need these tips lol

  • Nays Voice

    ooooohhh, this reminds me of my transitioning days. I mostly did protective styles to lower manipulation and breakage. I would keep my hair hydrated which helped with the different textures.

    • Kay’s Ways

      Yas Nay exactly! That’s basically what I’ve been doing is keeping it moisturized in 2 braids or twists and I’m good.

  • I’m no longer relaxed but boy do I wish I had articles like this around when I was! I don’t even know if blogging was a thing back then lol. I’m dating myself but I actually remember when the internet was born LOL!

    • Kay’s Ways

      So do I lady, Prodigy, AOL where you couldn’t even make a phone call without messing up the connection #80sbaby! Shoot now that I think about it I wish I knew this stuff back then too my hair would be much longer LOL.

  • Detangling is a must for me or I’d be big chopping. My hair is tangle prone and is subject to show out without notice.

    • Kay’s Ways

      Lol girl, I know YOU know the struggle! I’m ready for a trim like you but I don’t know if I want to relax then do it or put my Nikes on & just do it 😉

  • These are great tips. I don’t have a relaxer anymore, but I wish I knew these things when I did.

    • Kay’s Ways

      Thanks Kim! I wish I knew these things a lot longer. This hair journey has been cray

  • Very interesting. I know you can stretch natural hair but didnt know you could stretch relaxed hair too.

    • Kay’s Ways

      Hey Kiwi! Stretching is just prolonging the amount of time in between relaxers. The end of this month will make a year with the help of these methods

  • Valerie Robinson

    Didn’t know this. I remember when I did have relaxed hair, you were supposed to touch up ever 6 weeks. I always felt that was a bit much lol

    • Kay’s Ways

      Yeah Valerie, it’s definitely team too much lol. It all depends on how much new growth you have and how you manage it.

  • J King

    The longest I went without a relaxer was 7 months. I cut the relaxed ends because the double texture thing wasn’t working for me. Lol! Great tips! I had no idea.

    • Kay’s Ways

      Thanks J, 7 months is a great stretch! True, I stay trimming off the relaxed end because those tangles are the worst.

  • Tyra

    Such good tips! I didn’t know any of this so thanks for the info.

    • Kay’s Ways

      Thanks Tyra, I’m glad you enjoyed!

  • Becc

    Great tips! I was not aware anyone could go that long without a relaxer. I also did not know you could stretch it.

    • Kay’s Ways

      Thank you Becc. That new growth gets serious and shrinks up so I try to make it flow into the texlaxed hair as much as possible. These tips saved me lol

  • Katherine Gilbert

    These are great tips. Wish I had these tips when I was perming my hair. I think they can be used now that I’m natural as well.

    • Kay’s Ways

      Definitely Katherine healthy hair is the best whether relaxed or natural

  • I’ve been relaxer-free for almost 20 years now, but I wish there was this kind of info available back in those days! Great post!

    • Kay’s Ways

      Thanks so much Audrey!!!

  • LaToya Carter

    I have been relaxer free for about 2 years now I needed this during my sudden transition. I will Def try usin a t shirt to dry my hair on wash day!

    • Kay’s Ways

      2 years is great LaToya. This month makes a year for me and I’m happy I made it this far. That or a microfiber towel will be definitely much more gentler on your hair.

  • Where were you when I used to relax my hair? Great tips!

    • Kay’s Ways

      Struggling with thin relaxed hair LOL Thanks ChryssVi!

  • I don’t relax the hair anymore, but these are all great tips.

    • Kay’s Ways

      Thanks Nerline!


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