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If you've extremely curly or uncontrollable hair then you may have already looked into ways of 'controlling' your locks. Irrespective of the length of your hair, there are various treatments out there to help calm and straighten. These include various gels and sprays to calm hair as well as straightening techniques which can be permanent (with chemicals) or temporary (electrical hair straighteners). Temporary Straightening - Sprays Using sprays prior to blow drying your hair is a cheap alternative to straightening and calming your hair (£3 for a bottle of hair straightening spray).

However, it is a time consuming process and is not really suited for someone who has limited time to get their hair ready. It is less damaging to your hair than the other techniques listed below, but may not guarantee the best results especially if you have very curly hair. - Electrical Hair Straighteners These tend to now be ceramic straighteners that heat up very quickly and which can cost as little as £20. The more expensive models can cost over £100, but obviously, as well as buying a 'tradename' you will also be buying a product that will work better and will be more likely to last you longer.

It is advisable to use heat protection sprays before using this technique to protect the hair from too much damage, especially if you are regularly using your hair straighteners. Permanent Straightening - Chemical Straightening This is probably best performed at a hair salon, though can be quite an expensive procedure (c.£80+). Having your hair professionally straightened will ensure that your hair has the best treatments to protect it prior to and following the chemical treatment. However, there are many good ways of carrying out this process at home but it is VITAL to perform the pre-treatment test to find out how long the straighteners take to remove the curls from strands of your hair as well as to make sure the process won't actually damage your hair. Costs are around £15 for a box of straightening products that are sufficient for two treatments on shoulder-length hair.

Your hair must be in good condition and should not have been coloured or bleached beforehand. This is important since hair that has had previous colouring or lightening treatments will be more delicate and maybe prone to being damaged, such as drying and splitting. The times that are stated in the treatments must be closely adhered to and if successfully performed, the whole straightening process can be completed in less than two hours.

Initially, a straightening cream is applied which can be left for up to 35minutes (time calculated by performing the pre-test). After washing out your hair and carefully blow drying it, you must use an electric hair straightener and gently straighten the hair (only using the straightener once on each section of hair). A neutraliser and a deep conditioner are then applied. The hair will immediately be straighter and must not be tied back for at least a week to ensure that no kinks are introduced. As successful as all these techniques are, you must remember that it is putting stress on your hair and that you must take care of your hair before and following all treatments.

Deep conditioning as well as regularly conditioning are all very important to maintaining a health head of hair.

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