Similar to a traditional “press and curl” using a Marcel iron or hot comb, a silk press is done with a flat iron. Also, the hair tends to have a lot of body and movement, be lighter and silkier, and exudes a healthy shine. Unlike silk presses, traditional presses are usually weighed down with pressing oils and heavy grease.
A silk press is done on natural hair only. Relaxed hair is already straighten through a chemical process and excessive heat from a press will only lead to extreme damage.
Simple Steps to Create a Silk Press on Natural Hair
Using professional products, proper tools, and styling techniques, you can achieve a smooth and sleek silk press.
Before beginning the process, it is best to clarify the hair if there is extra build up from styling products. Then proceed to shampooing and conditioning.
Its key to make sure the hair is conditioned well before applying heat, so a deep conditioning step should be considered to assure moisture is locked in to prevent heat damage.
Also to help prevent damage, prior to using direct heat, use a heat protectant serum.
Blow dry the hair using the tension method (or hand method) to help prevent curl loss.
You can use a rubber brush (Denman brush or paddle brush) down the mid-shaft of the hair to the ends for smooth results, while blow drying small sections.
When flat ironing the hair, use the chase method by taking a fine tooth comb or detangling brush to run down or “chase” the hair in small sections as you press with the flat iron.
This pressing method prevents the need of multiple passes with the flat iron and still achieve optimum sleek hair.
You can style the silk press with bouncing curls. Use the flat iron to create these curls, by wrapping the hair around the iron once, then clamp down and slowly pull the iron down the length of hair.
Use a light oil or oil mist to finish the style and give it a healthy looking shine.
Hair in the above pictures done by: London – @misslondonbella – https://instagram.com/misslondonbella/