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Hair Straightening Cream Side Effects

Samantha has been considering straightening her tresses using hair straightening creams in the comfort of her own home.

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She assumes that in-salon treatments would not only cost her a handsome amount of money but also cause severe damage and breakage to her precious hair strands. On the other hand, hair straightening creams are safe and provides similar results, she thinks.

But how accurate are her assumptions? Do they have no side effects?

These creams indeed have lesser side effects than other straightening methods but they too have some adverse effects on your hair as well as health and in this article, we will talk in detail about them so that you know the danger of these creams before applying them.

The various chemical agents present in a hair straightening cream are designed to change the structure of your hair and give it a smooth, sleek, pin-straight appearance. To do so, these components alter the core architecture of your hair strands and reshape them from the inside.

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This alteration has the potential to permanently change the pattern of your tresses for the bad; you might completely lose the original, authentic texture of your hair making them look deformed and unflattering. When this happens, no amount of hair care remedies, hair treatments, and conditioning masks can help you to bring back your naturally healthy strands. The only option you would be left with is to grow out your natural hair completely and cut out the straightened sections gradually to revive your hair’s previous healthy state.

2. Causes Severe Hair Fall

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The most common and obvious side effect of using this product is severe hair fall. While smoothing out the hair cuticles for straighter outlook, these creams also soften the roots and affect the scalp which results in excessive hair fall and hair thinning. Also when you use a hot flat iron on the smoothened hair follicles to maintain the straighter outlook, the heat weakens them, even more, causing additional hair breakage and hair loss. This condition gets worse when you don’t choose the right cream and don’t follow the proper steps of using a straightening solution.

3. Starts to Produce Split Ends

Aside from causing extensive hair fall, they also results in severe split ends. Because these creams leave your tresses super dry and brittle and make the follicles soft and weak, the hair strands tend to break from the middle even at the slightest inconvenience which results in serious split ends. And when this occurs, your straightened manes look un-uniform and unsightly, much to your dismay.

4. Results in Itchy Scalp

Itchy Scalp

As hair straightening creams are made up of different types of chemical components, it reduces the production of natural oils in the scalp that helps to keep it hydrated and healthy. Because of, lack of oils and nourishment, your scalp becomes super dry and flaky and causes itchy scalp and dandruff problems. Severe dandruff often spreads to the neck and forehead and leads to severe fungal infection.

Another cause of itchy scalp is the allergic reaction from the cream. You could be allergic to any of the numerous chemicals used in hair straightening creams and not know about it. Once you apply it on your hair, the allergic reaction can appear immediately causing unbearable irritation not only on your scalp but also to your skin. This irritation can gradually lead to rashes, and redness and you might even need to seek medical help.

5. Has the Potential to Cause Cancer

Many of the hair straightening creams available in the market contain a chemical ingredient called Formaldehyde. Formaldehyde is a very strong, colorless gas that removes annoying frizz and flyaways from the hair strands and helps to keep them smooth and straight for an extended period.

But according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, this component is extremely dangerous to the human body and should not be used in any form or shape. The reason behind not favoring this chemical is that it has the potential to cause cancer (or help cancer grow and spread) if you are exposed to it for a long time.

Aside from the person who is using the straightening cream, the people in the surrounding also have the risk of suffering from cancer and other health hazards.

6. Imposes the Risk of Health Problems and Allergic Reactions

Itchy Scalp

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Aside from being a carcinogen (a component that might cause cancer), formaldehyde present in hair straightening creams are responsible for triggering other severe health problems and allergic reactions; from itchy scalp to skin rash, sneezing, coughing and running nose, this component can cause extreme discomfort and uneasiness.

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Reader Interactions


  1. Hello there,

    This is the very first time I am visiting your blog and I must say that your writing is excellent. I totally enjoyed going through this article; the writing style and approach is phenomenal. I especially loved the way you have described each side effect in parts to make it easy to read and understand. Very commendable! I am impressed.

    I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart because this article stopped me from applying hair straightening cream at home. In fact, after reading it fully, I shed the idea of straightening my manes permanently. I do not want to put my health at risk just because of a simple hairstyle.

    Thanks again.

    Keep up the good work guys.

    All the very best for the future!

    • Dear Mirna,

      Thank you very much for your sweet praising words. We are ecstatic with your response. Our readers’ feedback helps us to think and write better.

      We are also glad that our article helped you in some way or the other.

      Please keep coming back for more informative articles in the future.

      • You guys deserve the praise. Not only to me, but this article has helped many other girls out there, I am sure.

        I wish your success.

  2. Cancer!!?

    Seriously cancer!?

    How can a mere hair straightening cream cause deadly cancer? Are you sure about the facts or are you just saying this to keep people from straightening hair? I am really confused.

    Please reply to me. I use straightening creams on my hair every 3 months to maintain the sleekness. This article is worrying me a lot. Please give me the correct information.

    Thanks in advance.

    • Dear Margarita,

      First of all, thank you for taking the time and writing to us. We appreciate our readers’ feedback.

      Secondly, we have explained in detail how a straightening cream can cause cancer in the article. Please read it carefully to understand the idea. Moreover, we can assure you that our information is authentic. We never put something up when we are not 100 % sure.

      We hope this would help you to understand better.

        • Dear Margarita,

          Please do not panic. We would suggest you to use a Formaldehyde-free straightening cream to avoid such side effects.

          We hope that this would help you.

  3. Hello people,

    You people never fail to amaze me.

    First of all, this is one of the most descriptive articles I have read in a while that explains the side effects of hair straightening creams so nicely and easily. It is clean and minimal yet has all the required information. I agree with this piece of writing fully. It is to the point and has all the side effects a girl might suffer from after trying out these creams for the straightening purpose.

    I used the straightening cream a few months back to straighten my manes. And I just can explain what I went through after that. The side effects and the reactions were so bad that I had to go bald to maintain my health.

    I thank you guys for such an amazing article. It will help many girls out there.

    Keep on writing like this.

    Lots of good wishes!

    • Dear Emily,

      Thank you very much for sharing your experience with us. We are sure that it would help our readers a lot.


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