Color-treated Hair and Straightening

Unruly and curly color treated hair
Photo: Mimagephotography/Shutterstock
Q: I have rather curly and unruly hair. I very much want to chemically straighten it, as I do not have the time to wrestle a flat iron every morning. However, I also like highlighting it; adding light brown tones to my naturally dark hair.
From personal experience, can healthy, color-treated hair survive being straightened? I'd hate to have to pick between the two, but I'd hate to fry my hair even worse!

A: As long as your hair is in good condition and you care for it properly before and after the straightening process, you should have no trouble straightening color treated hair. You do, however, need to be objective and honest with yourself about your hair's condition.
You should also always perform a strand test to make sure that the hair will respond well to the straightening process. Doing this will tell you how long your hair needs to process and will help you avoid frying your hair.
Pick a straightening kit and read the instructions and cautions carefully before you begin to attempt the straightening. Make certain to follow the directions carefully and enlist the aid of a friend to help you if your hair is especially long (beyond shoulder-length).
See also:
Flat iron styling
Curling iron and flat iron damage
Once the hair is straightened, how do you take care of it?
What is the best thermal protectant spray I can use when I straighten my hair with a flat iron?