5 Effective Ways To Straighten Curly Hair

Curly hair is beautiful and luxurious, but can often be a terror to manage. It almost seems as if the planets and sun must perfectly align to have a perfect hair day for those with curly hair. Curls tend to take a life of their own and will boing and bounce in every direction they so choose. Let’s not even get started on the different reactions to dry and humid weather.  

In order to make curly hair more manageable or to just change up your look, you can try many ways to straighten curly hair.  Some methods are inexpensive and temporary, and can be easily completed at home. Other more costly methods can permanently straighten your curly hair and should be performed at a hair salon with a professional. Let’s look at the 5 most effective ways to straighten curly hair.

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5 Ways to Straighten Curly Hair

straighten curly hair


The most common way to straighten curly hair is simply with a blow dryer. A fresh blow out can give you a straight, bombshell look that can be maintained until your next wash. If you want a sleek flatter look you should use a flat paddle brush or use a rounded brush for a more voluminous look. 

Some important things to remember about having a good blowout is it should be done with pre-dried, damp hair, always use heat protectant spray beforehand, and don’t keep the heat too close on one area for too long.

Here is a simple guide showing how to get the perfect blowout on course, natural curly hair.

Flat Irons

Straightening curly hair with a flat iron is a method almost everyone is familiar with. A flat iron, or hair straightener, is usually made of ceramic or titanium, using the heat and metal to iron out curls and create sleek, shiny tresses. Straighten your hair using small portions of hair– slowly, and with a firm hold. This will ensure you won’t need to keep going over the same area multiple times. Consider investing in a high quality flat iron to get the best results with the least amount of damage as well a heat protectant spray. The results of a flat iron will last until you wash your hair again.


Relaxers are alkali chemicals that are in a lotion or cream form and are used to straighten or relax the curls in your hair. A relaxer would be more ideal if you have a tighter curl pattern. They may not completely straighten your hair like a straight perm will, but a relaxer will definitely loosen up your curls and make them easier to manage. 

You can go to any beauty store or beauty aisle of a supermarket and find relaxer kits for an affordable price. Relaxers can be damaging if not used properly due to containing chemicals like ammonium thioglycolate, calcium hydroxide, lithium hydroxide, and lye. When shopping for a relaxer, try to find a brand with high pH and moisturizing capabilities. The whole process takes about 15-20 minutes and can last 1-3 months with proper maintenance. 

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Brazilian Blowout – Keratin Treatment

straighten curly hair
Keratin Hair Treatment

One of the most effective ways to straighten curly hair is known as the Brazilian Blowout. This method uses Keratin, which is a protein naturally produced in the body and is responsible for having healthy hair, skin, and nails. Heat from a blow dryer is applied to hair treated with a liquid Keratin formula which will help the hair become straighter and shinier. 

The heat helps lock in the product, giving results that can last up to 4-6 months. Keratin treatments are usually done at salons and take about 3-5 hours, depending on your hair length and texture. One of the most expensive options to straighten curly hair, a keratin treatment can run you anywhere from $200-$600, again depending on your hair’s length and texture.

Japanese Straight Perm – Thermal Reconditioning

straighten curly hair
Japanese Straight Perm

Another extremely effective and more long-term method to straighten curly hair is to get a Japanese Straight Perm, also known as rebonding or thermal reconditioning. Thermal reconditioning is a process that uses heat and a chemical called ammonium thioglycolate to restructure and rebond damaged hair. It works especially well if you have dry, frizzy hair and are wanting a silky smooth, sleek texture. 

The Japanese Straight Perms involves a repetitive process of applying the straightening activator products, washing, blow drying, straightening, more products, and a final rinse/dry. Similar to the Brazilian Blowout method, thermal reconditioning can take around 3-6 hours to complete and can start anywhere between $300-600, depending on your hair’s length and texture. The Japanese straight perm usually lasts around 4-8 months. Most beauty salons will offer some type of variation or a Japanese Straight Perm, Brazilian Blowout, or both.

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Wrap Up

When figuring out what is the best method to straighten your curly hair, you’ll need to factor in your hair type, how long you want to wear the style for, how much time you have to style it, and how much money you’re willing to spend. For temporary, straight hairstyles, a simple blowout or running a flat iron through your hair will do. If you’re wanting to actually change the texture of your hair long-term, it’d be best to get thermal bonding or Keratin treatments.

It’s also important to be aware that methods that require more heat and chemicals are harsh and can damage your hair. Make sure to condition your hair often so it does not dry out and become brittle and always use heat protectant products if you use blow dryers and straighteners often. Hair masks and rebonding conditioners like Olapex will help repair your hair and give it an overall healthier, shinier, and softer texture.

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