Conventional Curl Reducer

For clients wanting straight hair using thioglycolate hair straightening, choices range from conventional (old technology) permanent hair straightening/curl reducer, to unconventional (modern) Japanese Thermal Reconditioning/TR:

Conventional thioglycolate hair straightening/Curl Reducer method.

It's a two-step process. The first step “thioglycolate” softens the bonds of the hair. The second step “oxidizer” puts the bonds back together. Curly hair is left smooth, and manageable. Wavy hair remains soft and moisture balanced. It offers a marvelous experience for stylists and clients alike. Conventional hair straightening method takes you straight to more flexible styling. Controls humidity and frizz, but does not defy it. Vertical by Redken, Rusk’s Anti Curl, Vavoom Straight Talk by Matrix, and X-Tenso by L’Oréal are some of the conventional hair straightening products available.

Conventional hair straightening is similar to TR but does not implement the use of heat compression (i.e. flat iron). It restructures the hair molecules to reduce frizz and volume, making the hair softer, quick and easier to style. Your hair will also retain its elasticity, so that if you start with curly hair you’ll have softer, smoother curls if you choose to wear it curly. If you want to wear it straight, styling it will take fewer products, less time and the style will last longer. This traditional system has been in use for over 40 years.

When to use conventional thioglycolate hair straightening/Curl Reducer.

Think about straight with reduced curl, easier to manage hair.

The hair is not really straightened, rather it is relaxed, which is not a bad thing. If you have naturally thick, coarse, hair, blow-drying it straight involved generous amounts of straightening styling products, a 40-minute struggle with a hot blow dryer and a big round brush, and a 10-minute stint with a hot flat iron. If you want to have hair that’s soft but not flat and pin-straight, sort of have a big C-shape toward the end, Go with Curl Reducer. Easy! Now you can blow-dry the hair in just 15 minutes.

Think about volume is King!

When you want hair that’s soft, silky and more manageable. Curl Reducer eases up texture
  • loosens curls and modifies hair into a smoother shape
  • Softens coarse, wiry hair making it more flexible and supple, so it’s easier to manage.

Texture control.

When naturally curly hair has a mind of its own. Curl Reducer keeps it in line:
  • Minimizes/reduce frizz
  • Redirects stubborn hair/cowlicks • Reduces hair volume.

“Loose, aging” perm removal.

When remnants of an “old perm” causes hair to lose its shape and style, Curl Reducer smoothes hair down, eliminating the need for trimming away the perm.

The results of thioglycolate straightener/Curl Reducer are permanent, but new hair growing in will be your hairs’ original texture. The difference between your new growth and your treated hair when it’s not styled will be nearly indiscernible. You’d likely only need to have the roots touched up a maximum of three to four times a year.

The newest addition to these curl reducer straighteners is X-Tenso - A “Smoothing” thioglycolate Curl Reducer hair straightening treatment from L’Oréal Professional - A cream which smells only faintly like perm solution is applied to the hair and worked in section by section. After a thorough rinsing on goes the neutralizer (which has a nice, fresh fragrance) for a few minutes before a final trip to the sink. You can blow-dry and feel the difference in the hair immediately: the brush just glides right through it, no tugging and no tangles.

Men too…

Men tend to have two major requirements: they refuse to spend too much time on their hair, and they want the result to look natural. Another use that seduces men is the ability to control once and for all a stubborn tuft, to give a new foundation to the hair, and above all to allow more graphic and creative haircuts. X-Tenso is a completely unisex product.

To optimize the results of X-Tenso, use L’Oréal Liss Extrême Moisturizing Shampoo, Liss Extrême Treatment Masque and Liss Extrême Leave-In Moisturizing Creme all salon-exclusive products designed to smooth frizzy hair. The X-Tenso service will vary in cost depending on the salon and the stylist’s hair straightening knowledge, skill and experience.

Conventional thioglycolate straightening/Curl Reducer method is great if you want to minimize frizz (it does not totally eliminate frizz) and want the option of styling your hair curly or straight. If you’re addicted to super-straight styles, hair that’s soft, silky and “frizz” free with little to no work required by you at home, then think about Thermal Reconditioning/TR. You may already have heard of Japanese Thermal Reconditioning, a process that, unlike X-Tenso, will eliminate curls, waves and frizz.

As for Thermal Reconditioning/TR, I use Straight Tio TR System and iStyle from Japan. These are the most amazing TR product. I also like to use the ID CARE support products in conjunction with Straight Tio and iStyle TR Systems. ID CARE is the most popular TR support product in Japan, and now in Canada.

I am very happy with these products. My clients are really happy with the results. More importantly, several months and years after having the process done they’re still happy with the texture and look of their hair. With other types of Thermal Reconditioning products, the hair looks fantastic just after it’s done, but a few days and few weeks later it starts to look dry, brittle and damaged.

Japanese Hair Straightening/TR results will last four to seven months, after which you’ll require root touch-ups. The cost starts at $700 and increasing from there; depending on hair length and abundance.

Think thioglycolate hair straightening is a one way street? Think again.

It is safe to switch from conventional thioglycolate method to unconventional thioglycolate TR method and vice versa. But I would use a protein treatment as a pre-treatment before the service and adjust the formula, since the hair is in effect "permed". I just wouldn't use the highest strength.

You may have heard stylist refer to Mini TR, were a shorter version of the ironing process is used. Hopefully they have thoroughly tested the process over their previously TRd hair. I cannot recommend you trying this service because a shorter version of the reducing agent and a shorter version of flat ironing used probably will result in more reversion.