Are no lye relaxers milder or gentler on black hair? Sorry, it is a myth that no-lye relaxers take all the worry out of straightening the hair. Nevertheless, it is true no-lye relaxers are gentler on the scalp. However, the FDA (Food & Drug Administration) has received complaints of scalp irritation from no-lye relaxers as well as lye relaxers. Therefore, the same safety precautions apply to both.
To get a better understanding it is best to know what ingredients are to be found in both forms of perm. Lye relaxers contain sodium hydroxide as the active ingredient. When it comes to no-lye relaxers, calcium hydroxide and guanidine carbonate are mixed to produce guanidine hydroxide. It’s the hydroxide that makes the relaxer reactive (basic) and the way they work is the same.
Many people have reported no-lye relaxers leave their hair duller and have gone back to lye relaxers. If you’re having problems with scalp irritation using a lye relaxer, you might want to make the switch to a no-lye relaxer. But, don’t believe that it’s somehow any healthier for your hair.