Hair Rebonding Vs Hair Relaxing: Which Treatment To Choose?

Hair Rebonding Vs Hair Relaxing: Which Treatment To Choose?

Straight hair is loved by every single woman, and there are various hair straightening treatments that help you get straight hair. Two common treatments that Japanese hair straightening salons offer are hair rebonding and hair relaxing. Let’s know what they are and how differ from each other.

The Differences Between Hair Rebonding And Hair Relaxing

What Is It?

The first thing to know when it comes to each hair treatment is their basics.

Hair Rebonding

Hair rebonding is a treatment in which a very potent solution is applied to the hair strands. This treatment breaks the protein in the hair that makes the texture and structure of the hair in the first place. The result is super straight hair. This technique originated in Japan and it’s also known as Japanese thermal reconditioning or Japanese hair straightening.

This is a procedure that a lot of women go for, if they have curly or wavy hair and they want to achieve a straight mane that will be permanent until their hair grows out.

Hair Relaxing

A hair relaxing treatment is completely different from hair rebonding. It is a technique in which the curliness of the hair is reduced. It doesn’t necessarily straighten the hair by any means, rather it just relaxes the tensely coiled hair and makes it less wavy.

If you have curly hair, then a hair relaxing treatment can turn the texture from coiled to slightly wavy. Alternatively, if you have slightly wavy hair, then a relaxing treatment can turn the texture from wavy to straight.

How Is It Done?

The procedure also varies and the technique by which each treatment is done is different too.

Hair Rebonding

A hair rebonding treatment starts with clean hair that has no product in it. Next, the rebonding treatment is applied. This treatment has a mix of sodium hydroxide, ammonium thioglycolate (aka thio), and guanidine hydroxide. These chemicals in combination work to break down the structure of the protein in the hair. And this ultimately results in hair that is pin-straight with zero lift or frizz.

Next, the treatment is washed and then a hot flat iron is run through the hair. Afterward, a neutralizing treatment is applied to set the restructured hair in place. This is what makes the rebonding treatment permanent. After the time is up, the neutralizer is washed and the hair is straightened again. That’s pretty much what goes down in a hair rebonding treatment.

Hair Relaxing

A hair relaxing treatment involves the application of a hair relaxer that mainly consists of sodium hydroxide, a strong alkaline substance. The low-pH substance reacts with the protein in the hair and partially loosens the bonds, not making the hair entirely straight, but giving the hair a more free-flowing texture that’s manageable and not too frizzy.

The treatment is left for about 20 to 30 minutes. After the time is up, the hair is washed and to avoid irritation on the scalp because of the highly alkaline relaxer, neutralization is done by applying an acidic treatment to ensure that the hair is set in place and that there isn’t any complaint of stinging on the scalp.


The price of each treatment also varies and according to the hair length and density, the prices can marginally increase or decrease.

Hair Rebonding

A hair rebonding treatment is generally a bit more expensive because it’s a permanent hair straightening treatment. It also takes a long time to get done, which means you’ll be in the salon for a few hours. Once done, your hair will stay straight for about 6 months.

However, you may have to visit a salon for touching up the new hair growth after the treatment. If you don’t and you have curly hair, then after a few months, there will a clear demarcation line between the straight hair and the new hair growth.

Hair Relaxing

Alternatively, a hair relaxing treatment is cheaper than a hair rebonding treatment. The treatment costs 50% less than a hair rebonding treatment. However, it lasts for about 2-3 months.

Maintenance And Care

The maintenance and general care of the hair after each treatment is also an important factor to consider because each treatment is different and the way you take care of your hair is going to determine the longevity of the treatment as well.

Hair Rebonding

A hair rebonding treatment generally doesn’t need any touch-ups for wavy hair. But that doesn’t mean that you don’t need to maintain it. As far as styling is concerned, you are at a huge liberty because there’s no need to do anything to the hair. It will look picture-perfect every single time. However, you’ll need to invest in damage-restoring products because rebonding does damage your hair to a considerable extent.

Hair Relaxing

As for hair relaxing treatment, there is not a lot of maintenance either. You can get away with styling, coloring, and manipulating the mane as you please after the initial 48 to 72-hour window has passed. The only care required after a hair relaxing treatment is a touch-up after a month to ensure that your hair has a cohesive texture throughout. This is something that you’ll need to keep in mind.


Hair straightening or manipulating treatments are not all that great when damage is concerned.

Hair Rebonding

Hair rebonding is considered to be one of the most damaging hair straightening treatments. The rebonding treatment, as well as the use of high heat is going to leave your hair feeling shriveled and brittle. The strands can break and get damaged if you try to use chemicals like hair dyes and bleach on the mane after getting it rebonded.

This is why it’s recommended that you don’t let your hair near any chemicals for the first 1 to 2 months after the treatment because your mane needs a breather. Also, you will need to invest in conditioning products that will help restore hair health and make the tresses look somewhat healthy.

Hair Relaxing

On the other hand, a hair relaxing treatment is less damaging to the hair. Yes, the treatment used is very potent and it can dry out the mane, but its effect is not as damaging.

However, if you get a relaxing treatment frequently, then you’ll need to condition your hair and omit using hair dyes and shampoos with ammonia and parabens because these things can do significant damage to the hair follicles.

Which One Is Better?

Well, that’s the question, isn’t it? The good news is that the answer depends on your preference.

If you want permanently straight your hair, then hair rebonding treatment is the way to do it. Alternatively, if you have slightly wavy hair and want to loosen up the strands a bit, without completely straightening the mane, then a hair relaxing treatment will be perfect. Moreover, if you’re concerned about hair damage, then hair relaxing is better.

Keep in mind that with a rebonding treatment, there’s no going back and a relaxing treatment won’t fully straighten the hair so make your decision wisely.


Hair rebonding and hair relaxing may look the same at first glance, but there are a lot of differences in each procedure and now you exactly how are they different from each other. Visit a keratin treatment salon Potomac for expert advice.

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