"Setting It Straight" on Hair Straightening Trends

04/22/2015 03:31 pm ET | Updated Jun 21, 2015

Summer is just around the corner. With hot temperatures and high humidity, we still faithfully look for ways to keep our hair in a manageable state. This bare all season can bring us major wants or changes for our hair. Being a professional stylist, I'm always seeking new ways on how to make this happen.

The idea of straightening hair isn't new. It has been a way for many people to manage their tresses for years. We have gone from irons, pressing combs, relaxers, Japanese straightening treatments, sets, paddle, vent and roller brushes to capture or recapture a look of manageable hair.

Keratin treatments have recently surfaced in the US and have had a liberating new way of eliminating frizz, relaxing curls and controlling waves. It's believed that this method was introduced in Brazil. Brazil's indulging beach life and high humidity would prompt most of us into finding a solution to maintain gorgeous hair in the heat of it all. Who would dare want to give up all that pleasure for the sake of a blow dry? The magic of marrying manageable hair with fun in the sun was a must.

There are important things to remember when you're having fun in the sun if you've invested in a Keratin treatment.

Salt water and chlorine are a no-no when trying to sustain your Keratin treated hair. Swim caps are strongly advised, but not many, besides Olympic swimmers, will want to wear swim caps. This is a dilemma many are not aware of. Some hair textures will be affected by the salt and chlorine more than other textures using keratin treatments. The most corrective thing to do, if you're going to forgo the swim cap, would be to have a no-sulfate, chlorine removing shampoo on hand for after-sun hair care. This won't be a cure-all and you may have shortened the time you'll have to enjoy the keratin treatment. There are products on the market to help the longevity of your keratin treatment. SOTAH Hair products hhtp:// can help in extending the life of your keratin treatment and will also hydrate the most weather beaten hair.

If the options I suggested above fail, the next best thing to do would be to get another keratin treatment a little sooner than scheduled.

Since keratins treatments have hit the market, there are many to choose from. The question is which one will work for your individual needs. With the vast differences in hair textures, this is an important question that your stylist needs to consider when suggesting your options. You should also think about what you want to achieve from having a keratin treatment, other than straighter hair.

In my experience with Keratin treatments, every client can require a different approach on how the keratin is applied depending on their texture and needs. Some clients still like having the option of wearing their hair curly or straight. Not all keratin treatments will give you that option. Some brands state that their product will eventually wash off, yet some textures won't see their virgin curl return again until the hair has enough re-growth at the roots.

You can also combine relaxing hair with keratin treatments designating each product on different areas of the hair to establish the look and texture you want. Keratin treatments are a good way to convert from using relaxers to eventually going completely natural. The reason for this is that the line of demarcation, if any, lessens as the hair grows out. This allows your hair to remain healthy and strong enough not to break off.

It's exciting when you're fully aware of your various straightening options.

Keratin treatments not only smooth your hair, but they enhance color treated hair as well.

Certain keratin treatments require you to color the hair before it is applied while others will require that you to color your hair after the treatment. The reason is that some brands will have a color-fading effect when the heat is applied with the hot irons, which may direct you to color your hair after the service is completed to regain your vibrant color. On the contrary, other brands will enhance your color treated hair on contact with the application of the hot irons, so applying color before the service is a plus. If you're thinking of lightening your hair, choose a keratin that will allow you to color before the treatment. The reason is that it can be a little more difficult to lift the color to your desired shade after a keratin treatment as the cuticle has been sealed.

When using keratins on hair that is more than 35% gray, be cautious of the hot irons, which can cause gray hair to yellow. This isn't a good look, and it could cause you an added color service, when you had no desire of coloring your hair at all.

Keratin treatments on blonde hair will require a little extra care too. Some Keratin treatments will have specific formulas made for natural or bleached blondes, due to the fact that the hair is light in color or possibly a bit more fragile due to bleaching treatments.

Be aware of what the hot irons are doing to your ends every time you get another Keratin treatment, let alone in daily use, especially if you're planning on growing your hair out. As I have mentioned, some textures don't regain their curl, so passing the iron again over hair that has already lost its curl, will only get straighter and possibly weaker. The need to pass the iron over the ends on your next keratin treatment is an evaluation that your stylist should make at that time. Lesser heat can be administered to the ends as an alternative if needed.

There are many pros and cons in using keratin treatments. We have read countless articles about the hazards of using keratin products. We have to educate ourselves and be aware so that any decision made, will be a conscious one. New approaches are now entering the market to give you substantial results without the threatening health risk. There are conditioners that have been infused with keratin to help the porosity of the hair without the hot irons resulting in a healthier approach and a smoother effect.

I hope I have given you some insight into product choices. At the end of the day, we each make our own choices, and we should all know our options. Knowledge is king, so cheers to setting it straight!