What Are the Different Types of Hair Smoothing Products?

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  • Written By: Amanda R. Bell
  • Edited By: E. E. Hubbard
  • Last Modified Date: 01 September 2019
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There are several different types of hair smoothing products on the market that can control even the most difficult-to-style hair. Some of the most popular products are specialized shampoos and conditioners, balms, gels, and sprays; these tend to work for daily use. To keep hair manageable for a longer time, several hair smoothing products are available to keep the hair controllable and frizz-free for a few days or even several months.

Shampoos and conditioners are often marketed for hair smoothing. These tend to include ingredients such as silicone and silk protein to temporarily seal the outside of the hair cuticle, forcing it to lay flat. They also are often very moisturizing, as dryness is usually the reason for frizzy or coarse hair. Quality smoothing conditioners have moisturizers that can penetrate the hair shaft, increasing the hair’s moisture and making it easier to manage when styling.

Several styling products are available to help smooth hair. Straightening or smoothing balms and creams often include ingredients to make it easier for hair to hold a style. They can also help to loosen curls, reducing the amount of heat styling that is needed to blow out or straighten hair.

For those with difficult-to-manage hair, smoothing gels are popular. These tend to have a stronger hold than balms and creams, although they can be drying. While gel can make hair stiff and crunchy if used without heat, it can leave hair smooth and touchable when used prior to blowing hair dry.


Several different hair smoothing sprays can increase shine and reduce frizz, making hair look smoother. While some of these are used as a finishing hair smoothing product, many can work as a heat protectant spray on damp hair. The ingredients in the spray protect wet hair from the heat of a blow dryer or dry hair from the high temperatures of a flat iron, reducing damage and increasing shine.

Relaxers and blow drying aids can make smooth hair last for several days. These tend to include chemicals that break the bonds of the hair, releasing curls and making it easier for hair to remain in a smooth style. The length of time the effects of these hair smoothing products last varies; some keep hair smooth between shampoos, while others can last for weeks or even months.

Certain salon products can help to make smooth hair possible. The most popular permanent product is thermal reconditioning; this uses a very strong chemical to break the bonds of the hair permanently, forcing it to remain straight and smooth until new hair grows in. Keratin is also a popular hair smoothing product that coats the outside of the hair shaft with the protein of which hair is made, increasing manageability and smoothness. This product, when used by a professional hair stylist, can keep hair smooth for up to four months.


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