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Last month I got my hair trimmed and straightened by Ursula Stephen after only wearing my natural fro for quite some time and, as I pointed out on Instagram, the moment I saw my first straight strand of hair I knew there would be many more blowouts in my future.

Unfortunately, my follow-up attempt at being a heat natural involved bringing my own hair products to the girl who did my mani-pedi at a new spot in my neighborhood and paying her $25 to make me look like 4 pm on picture day in the third grade — you know that puffy-straight-what-was-the-point look. So I decided I could probably do a better job on my own and I put that theory to the test when I got my hands on Xtava’s Pro-Satin Straightener “designed with thick-haired girls in mind.”

Because I’d gotten such good results during my experience at Ursula Stephen’s salon, I decided to recreate that process from start to finish, using the same Suave products that initially made me a “believer.” I washed my hair with the Coconut Oil Infusion Damage Repair Shampoo & Conditioner, which promises (and delivers) weightless moisture, and towel-dried my hair with my anti-frizz microfiber Devatowel to reduce blow-drying time and fuzz.

After towel-drying, I applied Suave’s Volumizing Weightless Blow Dry Spray and I added several sprays of ORS’ Black Olive Oil Leave-In Conditioner for added thermal protection and to make sure my strands had enough moisture. I blow dried my hair in about 10 separate sections using a hand-held blow dryer with a comb attachment for extra straightening, and when I was done I could already tell my hair was lighter and straighter than in the past when I’ve used cream conditioners and setting mousses.

Once my hair was completely dry, I squirted three pumps of the Coconut Oil Infusion Damage Repair Oil Treatment and spread it throughout my hair, paying particular attention to my ends which tend to be a problem area for me when straightening.

I set the temperature to 445°, waited 2 minutes for the iron to heat up, and from my first pass through, I could tell Xtava had made good on its promise of reducing tension on the hair with the use of ceramic tourmaline plates. My hair easily glid through the 2-inch plates and I was able to turn the handle to get a nice, soft bend on my ends as opposed to sharp bumps, as has been my experience with other irons. The handle of the iron also never got hot and I could even hold the outside of the plates when curling my ends without burning my hands. I did hit the power and temperature buttons, which are located on the side of the handle, a few times due to the placement, but not so much that it was annoying.

Thirty minutes later, I was thoroughly pleased with the results of my at-home blowout. On top of my hair being completely straight from root to tip, there was a noticeable amount of shine which I contribute to the straightener’s infrared heat technology which is designed to lock in shine. My hair also felt extremely soft and wasn’t the least bit dry, which can be a hard balance to strike when straightening hair. Check out the video below to get a better look at the movement and shine of my hair.

FYI: The Pro-Satin Straightener ($59) is 30% off through New Year’s Eve…get you one.

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