Hair Straightening Shampoos: Benefits and Limitation

Heat styling tools temporarily break down hydrogen bonds in the hair in order to make hair look sleek and elegant. Blow-drying and flat ironing are the two most common ways to provide smooth and lustrous mane without the use of chemicals. However, heat-styling tools only temporarily change hair texture.

Hair relaxing treatments and Japanese Hair Straightening Treatments are chemical straightening techniques that permanently break the bonds in the hair, leaving your locks looking straight and sleek. Brazilian keratin treatment is a semi-permanent hair straightening treatment that gradually fades over time.

There are many shampoos on the market that are claimed to have a straightening effect on the hair. Such claims may encourage unreal expectations about what the product can provide. This guide reveals how hair straightening shampoos work and what makes them different from ordinary shampoos.

a brunette woman styling her hair with a flat-iron

Do Straightening Shampoos Make Your Hair Straight?

There are some limitations to what these rinse-out products can do for your hair:

  1. A straightening shampoo or conditioner won’t completely straighten hair. To transform your curls into straight hair, you’ll still need to use a flat iron.

2. These products cannot replace flat iron or other heat straighteners.

3. They are not nearly as effective as chemical straightening.

Potential Benefits of Using Hair Straightening Shampoos

Here’s what you can expect from using a hair straightening shampoo:

  • Your hair will be less prone to frizz.
  • Your curls or waves will be more defined and shinier.
  • Your hair will be easier to comb and less prone to tangles.
  • It will take less time to style your hair by using hot tools.
  • Less heat will be required to get the desired straight look.
  • Your straight style will last longer.

In essence, hair straightening shampoos are supposed to support the heat styling process and make it easier to maintain your style. They can also be used on chemically straightened hair as long as they don’t have harsh sulfates and sodium chloride in their formulas.

How Straightening Shampoos Differ from Regular Shampoos?

Straightening shampoos contain higher levels of conditioning agents like silicones and polymers that can stick to your hair. These ingredients stay in the hair and work against the hair’s natural tendency to get poofy and frizzy.

Straightening shampoos should be used in a similar way as your regular shampoo. To get maximum results, distribute the product evenly throughout your hair with a wide-tooth comb. A straightening shampoo works best when paired with a hair straightening conditioner and followed up with a leave-in conditioner or a smoothing serum.

Shampoo Brands that Help Straighten Your Hair

1. Sexy Straight Sexy Hair Straightening Shampoo

This gentle cleanser smooths and moisturizes hair to prepare it for heat straightening. It makes hair straighter without looking greasy or heavy.

This shampoo uses targeted conditioning and styling ingredients to help align the cuticles and create sleek and shiny hair. It helps to control the frizz, relaxes curls, and makes hair manageable.

2. Garnier Fructis Sleek & Shine Brazilian Smooth Shampoo

Sleek & Shine Brazilian Smooth Shampoo is advertised to make the process of flat ironing curly hair easier and faster.

The formula uses silicones and Brazilian Murumuru Butter to smooth the cuticle and make hair easier to straighten. The ingredient list also includes Active Fruit Protein, vitamins, plant extracts, and strengthening conditioners. To boost straightening effects, you can follow with their matching conditioner and leave-in treatment.

This shampoo contains sodium chloride, which makes it unsuitable for use on keratin straightened hair.  

3. The First Straightening Shampoo by Sweet Hair

This professional beauty product is created and patented by “Sweet Hair Professional”. The company took 2 and a half years to develop the technology.

The First is actually a naturally based straightening product that is supposed to be applied by a hair professional. The stylist applies the product to towel-dried hair and then massages the hair to create rich foam. The product is supposed to sit in the hair for about 20 minutes. The hair is then divided into thin sections and flat ironed. The temperature should be set between 375ºF and 450ºF. A heat-activated blend of organic acids in the shampoo creates chemical bonds in the hair, generating hair straightening.

The result is frizz-free, smooth, and manageable hair with reduced volume. Straightened hair can be washed, colored, lightened, or toned the same day.

The First Shampoo – YouTube video by Sweet Hair Professional USA

happy young woman with long straight hair

Silicones in Hair Straightening Shampoos and Conditioners?

Silicones are very effective smoothing ingredients that make hair sleek, more manageable, and frizz-free. Many hair smoothing shampoos contain silicones in their formula.

Silicone agents in hair products form a thin, waterproof coating around the hair shaft. This microfilm around hair helps reduce porosity and prevents hair from absorbing moisture from the air, making your locks more resistant to humidity. Silicones smooth the hair’s cuticle, which increases light reflection and helps to enhance the luster of your hair. They also reduce surface friction, so your hair can be easily combed and detangled.

Silicone ingredients in hair products can be identified by the suffix -cone, -conol, or -xane at the end of the chemical name on the ingredient panel.

Some Unwanted Effect of Silicones in Hair Shampoos

  1. Silicone coats the hair shaft creating smooth and shiny hair. But this protective coating prevents moisture and other valuable ingredients from penetrating the hair shaft.

2. This fine silicone coating on the hair prevents other hair treatments from working and prevents hair dye from entering the hair shaft.

3. Products containing silicone can leave a residue that builds up in the hair, making it look dull, lifeless, and greasy.

4. Some silicone deposits are difficult to wash out. To get rid of them you have to use a clarifying shampoo.

attractive woman with hair washed with a straightening shampoo

Disclaimer: All content on this blog is created for informational purposes only. You shouldn’t use it as a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

Last Updated on April 16, 2022 by Gaga

About the author | Website | + posts

Gaga is a blogger and founder of the Softer Hair website. She often says that insomnia is to blame for her first blogging attempts. Being the night owl, she hated the morning alarm. She left her office job and returned to what she loved most - writing. Her pets are her coworkers, and she replaced the town crowd with a quiet neighborhood outside the city.