Why Won’t My Hair Stay Straight After I Straighten It?

Cute young African American female with bone dry wavy hair follicles styled with a blow dryer and coconut oil.

Do you spend hours straightening your hair only to have it poof up the second you walk outside? Most curly girls have been there.

No one likes watching their hard work go down the drain, so today, we will help you figure out why your hair is reverting after you straighten it.

We’ll also give you plenty of tips on keeping your strands sleek, smooth, and shiny, so make sure you read until the end!

Why Won’t My Hair Stay Straight After I Straighten It?

The primary reasons why your hair won’t stay straight after you straighten it are (1) your flat iron wasn’t hot enough, (2) you overloaded your hair with product, (3) you need a trim, and (4) your hair wasn’t dry.

As you can see, there are a variety of reasons why your straightening sessions don’t leave you with long-lasting results. Luckily, you can take steps to stop reversion in its tracks and get perfectly smooth strands with staying power. 

The first step is identifying the cause of your reverting strands. That’s what we’ll address in the sections below. 

A beautiful young black girl with dry hair that was styled with anti-frizz heat protectant hair spray while flat ironed.

Your Flat Iron Wasn’t Hot Enough

While turning down the heat will help stave off damage and keep your strands healthy, it might be behind your short-term results. If your flat iron isn’t hot enough, your hair will retain more of its natural texture and stay straightened for just a short time.

For straight and fine textures, try to stick within a range of 350-375 degrees. To straighten thick or coarse hair, you’ll likely have to increase the temperature to 400-450 degrees. Don’t forget your heat protectant!

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You Overloaded Your Hair With Product

The more product you use before you straighten your hair, the more likely your hair will revert faster than you want it to. Most hair products contain water, which undoes the effects of heat styling and can cause your hair to become textured and frizzy.

To combat this, limit the number of products you use before your straightening session, and avoid using more than the recommended amount. 

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Light-skinned black girl with previously straightened hair styled with a fine-tooth comb and light-hold hairspray.

You Need a Trim

Your ends, which are the oldest part of your hair, are drier than the rest of your locks. Dry and damaged ends are harder to straighten and revert more quickly than healthy strands due to their inability to hold onto moisture.

Pay attention to which areas revert after you straighten your hair. If the reversion is limited to your ends, it’s likely a sign that you need a good trim.

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Your Hair Wasn’t Dry

While water is necessary for healthy hair, it’s the fastest way to undo all of your straightening efforts. The slightest drop of moisture will cause your hair to frizz up as soon as you finish straightening it.

Additionally, using direct heat on wet hair will cause the water to boil and cook your strands from the inside out.

Unless you’re using a wet-to-dry flat iron, make sure your hair is 100% dry before you flat iron it. That will prevent damage and help you maintain your style!

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A lady with perfectly straight hair that turns wavy after getting excess moisture and humidity.

How to Keep Your Hair Straighter for Longer

Now that you know why your hair is reverting, you’re probably wondering what you can do to stop it. Well, you’re in luck! The following tips will help your hair stay straighter for longer. 

Spend More Time Blow-Drying

When you get your hair professionally straightened, you may notice that your stylist spends just as much time smoothing your hair with a blowdryer as they do flat ironing it.

That’s because the straighter you can get your hair before flat ironing it, the straighter and longer-lasting your results will be. Don’t rush through the blow drying process, and make sure your hair is completely dry before you attempt to straighten it.

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Young black girl with naturally straight hair after getting wavy hair extensions to thicken up with hair strands.

Use Anti-reversion Hair Products

Anti-reversion products are specifically formulated to fight the environmental conditions that cause your hair to revert to its natural texture. A light spritz of humidity-blocking spray or serum will lock your style in place and keep your strands bone straight for days.

Many of these products contain silicones which, despite their spotty reputation, are one of the best ways to fight off frizz and humidity

Note: Silicones may leave behind stubborn buildup, so add a monthly clarifying treatment to your hair care routine. 

Go Slower

When flat ironing your hair, slowly move the iron downwards from root to end. By going slower, you can ensure each strand is getting enough heat to get perfectly straight.

Rushing through the process will only throw off your results and leave you with frizzy, textured strands. Even though you should move slowly, avoid keeping the flat iron in place for too long. 

A woman with damp hair that's becoming wavy after getting wet styled with a curling iron and wide-tooth comb.

Tips for Getting Bone Straight Hair With a Straightener

Sometimes, all you need to do to get straighter hair is adjust your flat ironing technique. In this section, we’ll share some tips on improving your results and getting bone-straight hair with a straightener. 

Try the Comb Chase Method

Flat Ironing Transitioning/Relaxed Hair - Chase Method with Comb

The comb chase method keeps your strands aligned and reduces the number of passes you’ll have to do to get your hair bone straight. It allows for even heat distribution, and the increased tension helps your strands lay flat.

To give this method a try, all you have to do is run a fine-tooth comb through your hair as you’re flat ironing it. It can take some time to get used to the technique, but we doubt you’ll go back once you do! 

African American lady decided to straighten hair with coconut oil to keep her curly hair healthy.

Invest in a High-Quality Flat Iron

When it comes to straightening your hair, investing in a quality straightener is the best thing you can do. In addition to keeping damage to a minimum, an excellent flat iron gets your hair straighter and prevents it from reverting.

Here are a few ways to make sure you’re picking the best flat iron. 

  • Before purchasing a flat iron, squeeze it shut and check for gaps. Avoid flat irons that have spaces between the plates, as they won’t be able to effectively straighten your hair. 
  • Choose flat irons made with high-performing materials like titanium, ceramic, or tourmaline. 
  • Opt for tools that have adjustable heat settings, so you can control the amount of heat that you use on your strands.

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Work in Small Sections

When you section your hair to flat iron it, think small. Working in small sections allows for even heat distribution, so all of your strands get an equal measure of heat.

It also makes it easier to spot areas you missed – you can then go back over them before moving on. Straightening large chunks of hair will leave your hair looking patchy and uneven. 

A young cheerful black girl after taking down a loose ponytail styled her hair with a paddle brush.

Top 3 Flat Irons for Sleek Hair

Are you in the market for a new flat iron? If so, we’ve got some recommendations that we’d love to share! Here are our picks for the top three best flat irons on the market. 

BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium Ultra-Thin

The BaBylissPRO is a lightweight flat iron with high-quality titanium plates that heat quickly and evenly. It also has a temperature control dial with over 50 different heat settings for complete control over how you straighten your hair. This iron will get your hair bone straight with just one pass! 

BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium Ultra-Thin Straightening Iron
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GFI Hair Turbo Flat Iron

GFI’s Hair Turbo flat iron uses infrared technology to gently straighten your hair while eliminating frizz and drastically reducing damage. The 360-degree swivel cord lets you move freely and makes reaching all those hard-to-reach areas a breeze.

GFI Hair Straightener with a Turbo Heating Element
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HSI Professional Glider

This versatile styler combines the benefits of ceramic and tourmaline, leaving you with perfectly smooth hair in a fraction of the time! The temperature control dial allows you to set the temperature between 150 – 450 degrees, making this flat iron the perfect choice for any hair texture. 

HSI Professional Glider Ceramic Tourmaline Ionic Flat Iron Hair Straightener
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When trying to keep your hair straight, using the proper tools and techniques goes a long way. Don’t get frustrated if things don’t work the first time around. The more you get used to flat ironing your hair correctly, the easier it’ll be in the future.

We hope this article has helped you identify the reason why your hair doesn’t stay straight and armed you with all the information you need to get silky straight strands that last.

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