Straighten Hair with Mayo

Photo: Marekuliasz/Shutterstock
Q: Does mayo really help to straighten your hair if applied like a perm and put in a cap under the dryer?
A: Actually, I think either you or your source for this little tip have gotten mixed-up somewhere along the line. Mayonnaise, in addition to being a great dressing for potato salad, also works as a conditioner for your hair.
When applied to wet hair, combed through evenly, covered with a plastic cap, and left on for 20-30 minutes under a warm dryer, the mayonnaise will make your hair soft and manageable. Remember to rinse the mayo thoroughly from the hair. The oil, egg and vinegar in mayo work to nourish the hair, help close the cuticle layer and give a protective coating. It will leave the hair shiny, smoother and easier to style, but it does nothing to remove curl.
Remember that in order to change the wave pattern in the hair, you must break and reform the side bonds of the hair. Mayo might help to reduce frizz found in the hair, but curly hair to which mayo is applied will remain curly, no matter how long you leave it in place. Mayo doesn't even work as a styling product for straightening the hair.
If you applied the mayo to wet hair and combed it through, then dried the hair with a dryer the mayo would become gummy and sticky and create a tangled mess. In addition, it would quickly start to smell very foul. This is not a good idea.
The only methods currently available for permanently straightening the hair are thio-strightening, hydroxide straightening (relaxers) and thermal restructuring. The first two processes have roughly the same cost as a permanent wave process, while thermal restructuring costs 10-times as much as perming (or more depending on hair length and your geographic location).
The mistaken idea that mayonnaise will help to straighten hair, may stem from the fact that using mayo as a conditioner can weigh the hair down. This extra weight may cause the curls found in the hair to be stretched out more than normal, causing the hair to appear a little straighter, but it does not do anything to actually remove the curl.
See also:
Hair straightening methods
Beauty with household products
Is it true that yogurt promotes hair growth?
Home made hair masks and moisture treatments