If you are a keen blow-drier and regularly rely on straighteners, you will know that regularly heat-treating your hair can take its toll on your locks. It can cause over drying, split ends, and singeing if you accidentally set the heat too high! You can reduce this effect by using a good-quality heat protector spray, which can make a huge difference over time.
But some days you just want to give your hair a break and give it the chance to restore its strength so that it remains healthy. For those days when you want to avoid harsh chemical or heat treatments, we are going to share our favorite methods you can use to straighten out your hair.
Don’t forget, be it wavy, straight or curly, your hair is the way it is in a big way due to genetics. It hangs curly or straight because of the shape of the follicle. This means that while the methods we are going to discuss can give you very good results at straightening your hair, they are not going to be permanent. If you are looking for a solution that will last long-term, consider chemical straightening, but be aware that it has its risks.
These methods (other than method 5) are also not going to give you the perfect, completely flat straight hair that using a flat iron would. But even people with naturally straight hair have some level of curve. Instead, these methods will give you straighter hair that looks natural, as well as a way of maintaining your straightened hair for longer.
Method 1 – Sleep In Pony Tails
We use this method, not just to create straight hair, but also for helping our hair to stay straight when we have used straighteners. You can use as many different sections of your hair as you want, but the curlier your hair is naturally, the more sections you will probably need. You can also combine this method with a silk scarf – to reduce friction between your hair and your sheets overnight and help your hair stay smooth.
When you have washed and conditioned your hair, squeeze the excess water from your hair and then gently pat it with a towel. It is important that you don’t rub your hair at this point. Otherwise, you can cause frizz.
While your hair is still slightly damp, spray on some holding spray and then separate your hair into sections and begin working through the first with a wide-toothed comb, which will help to remove tangles without causing frizz. Avoid using a bristle brush and this will be more likely to cause frizz.
Once you have worked through the first section with a wide-toothed comb, follow on with a comb with smaller teeth. This will help to smooth out your hair even more.
After you have gone through the section thoroughly with the small-toothed comb, fix a hair tie loosely to the top of the section of hair, around the height of the nape of your neck. You want it secure enough that it doesn’t slip down your hair, but not too tight that it leaves an indent when you remove it.
Next, comb down the section of hair again, then attach a second hair tie about an inch or two below the first. Then repeat this until you get to the bottom of the strands. Then, you just repeat these steps on each section of your hair.
If your hair is only loosely wavy naturally, you probably only need to use two or three sections. Curlier hair, however, will take a bit more taming, and it will be much easier to comb it in smaller sections.
Adding A Silk Scarf
You don’t have to use a silk scarf for this method, but it can greatly reduce the friction between your hair and your pillows as you sleep, and therefore can make a big difference in achieving your style.
There are two methods you can use for a silk scarf.
The first method is for when you are only separating your hair into 2 different sections. Once you have got your two sections organized – one each side of your head, drape the silk scarf over your head, with the midpoint around your natural parting. As you attach the first hair band around the top section of your hair, slip the silk scarf through. Then, with every hair tie you add, wrap the scarf around the bunch of hair and then lop it through the tie to secure it.
The second method is more suitable for people who have used more than two sections of their hair. Once you have finished securing the hair ties, drape it over your head, securing it at the top with some bobby pins. Next, gather up the bunched sections and wrap the scarf around them. You can then either secure it in a loose ponytail or pin it up with bobby pins to your head – which will be slightly less comfortable to sleep it!
If you don’t have a silk scarf, they aren’t that expensive to buy. This is our favorite, which you can buy here from Amazon. We love the pattern and the fact it is made from 100% Mulberry silk.
Method 2 – Use A Hair Mask Regularly
The idea behind a mask is not to create perfect, just-ironed hair. It is to nourish your hair, providing and locking in moisture, vitamins and anti-oxidants that can help to strengthen your hair, repair damage and therefore reduce frizz. It, therefore, enhances the results you can get by using any form of hair straightening – natural or not.
There are many different hair straightening masks on the market. Our favorite is the Professional Series Hydrating Argan Oil Mask. It repairs, restores and protects your hair, leaving it silky-smooth, soft and manageable.
If you’d rather go the completely natural route, you can always create your own hair mask. Here are some ideas of natural masks you can make at home which are thought to promote straighter hair with continued use over time:
- Blitz up some celery leaves with water in a blender, strain the juice and leave it to infuse for 2 Then spray it on your hair and comb through with a large-toothed comb. Then gently massage it in and leave it on for half an hour before washing it off.
- Warm some castor oil and massage it into your hair. Then wrap your hair in a warm, damp towel and leave it for half an hour before washing it off.
- You may have heard of using lemon juice to bleach your hair, but it is also thought to be able to help straighten your hair! Mix it with coconut milk which acts as a conditioner and massage the mix into your hair. Leave it on for half an hour before rinsing it out.
Method 3 – A Bun
Just like the ponytails method we looked at first, this technique is a method of fixing your hair so that it does not curl as you sleep or as it dries. Because it is less secured that method 1 requires, this method is more suitable for people who don’t have particularly curly hair to start out with. It can, however, cut down on frizz, especially if you wrap it in a silk scarf or sleep on silk or satin pillowcases overnight.
The twirling technique may give your hair a slight twist when you release it, but this should be more uniform than your natural waves.
When you have washed and conditioned your hair, squeeze out the excess water and then gently pat and squeeze your hair dry with a towel. Remember not to rub it and cause frizz and static! While it is still slightly damp, work through your hair with a wide-toothed comb to remove all tangles.
Top tip: if your hair is very tangled, or particularly curly and you are concerned about using a comb, start from the bottom and work up. We don’t mean you should be back combing it; we just mean to begin combing the bottom inch of your strands. When that is smooth and tangle-free, move up and inch and comb the bottom 2 inches of the strands. Then gradually work up the hair until you can comb the whole length.
You can then begin to twist your hair around and fix it into a bun. Either one large bun or two smaller ones, either side of your head are usually sufficient. It is worth considering how you normally lay when you are asleep and choose based on what will be more comfortable!
When you have secured your bun, it is worth attaching a silk scarf over your hair. You won’t just want to fix it to the bun itself, you will want to use it over the top of your head, because around your face, fringe and your parting are the most obvious areas where any potential frizz will now show!
So, drape the scarf over the top of your head and wrap it around underneath the bun. Secure it with bobby pins, thinking about the way you lie when you sleep. The great thing about silk scarves is that they still let your hair breathe, so if it is still slightly damp, it should still be dry by morning. We don’t recommend sleeping with a draft though or doing this when your house is cold!
Method 4 – Use A Straightening Brush
There are a few different types of straightening hair brush you can use. Some look just like straighteners but have bristles, others look just like a regular hairbrush, but heat up. A slightly rarer find though is somewhere between the two, and looks like straighteners, but has bristles and will not heat up.
We get that you may not consider it a totally natural method of straightening given that many straightening brushes involve heat-treating your hair to set it. However, it is not as intense as a regular flat iron if you choose a model which looks like a hairbrush because the heat is only one side of the hair. It is a slightly gentler alternative which can give you natural-looking straight hair, as opposed to the completely flat, just-ironed look.
Method 5 – Use A Straightener
Ok, just like using a straightening brush, you probably don’t see using a straightener as naturally straightening your hair. But it doesn’t involve the use of harsh substances like chemical straightening does, and it is very handy if you want to set it perfectly for an event. Plus, you can combine the use of a straightener with some of the other methods we have suggested to help them to last longer or getter better results. Always remember though to set your straightener to the lowest temperature setting that is effective on your hair, to prevent over-drying and damage.
If you are interested in buying a hair straightener or upgrading your old one, have a look out our best hair straightener reviews, where we have discussed the features of what we consider to be the top models on the market. It can help you to decide which one would be best for you and your hair.
There you have our favorite methods for achieving straight hair naturally. Remember, it is not just about straightening it out so your hair is as flat as it can be. It is also about caring for your hair – nourishing it and maintaining its moisture so that it stays strong, healthy and resilient against damage. The drier your hair is, the more likely it is to frizz and become unruly – no matter whether you start with straight or curly hair.
Let us know below if you have any other favorite methods for straightening your hair naturally!