Q: I have shoulder length hair and I want extensions but I have my hair permed. It used to be naturally straight and was soft
and thin. I've only had my perm in for two months and I'm beginning to dislike it, so I was thinking if I got my hair chemically
straightened would it lift my perm and go back to how my hair used to be. Also do you know how much it would cost to chemically straighten hair?
A: The cost depends largely on what type of straightening procedure you choose. There are thio-straighteners that are formulated the
same way perms are formulated and simply function to break the chemical side bonds of the hair and reform them into the straight
pattern you desire. These processes, however, are like perms in that they cause some swelling in the hair shaft and while the hair
may be straightened, it will be “thicker” than before it was initially permed. The cost of a thio-straightener is comparable to the
cost of a permanent wave. (Generally, the cost is anywhere from $35 to $80 U.S. and up.)
Now, the Thermal Reconditioning (Japanese Straightening) service will generally give you perfectly
straight, smooth and beautifully conditioned hair, and will likely return your hair to the soft, thin texture it had before it was
permed. However, the process is expensive, with prices ranging from $500 to $1500 and up depending on the length of your hair and
the area in which you live. (Areas where there are fewer salons and stylists who offer the service generally charge a higher price because of lack of competition.)
You will need to consult with whichever stylist you choose (for whichever service) to have them
evaluate your hair’s condition. If your hair has been badly damaged by the perm you received, you may not be suited to either process
and may have to wait to repair the damage to the hair before getting the hair straightened.