Many questions have been asked about black hair techniques to maintain the thickness and health. I provided the different healthy techniques that has helped me throughout my hair journey and I hope it helps you too.
Although I had a few set backs (postpartum shedding, dry colored breaking hair), following these steps helped me get my hair whipped back into shape.
1. Air Dry - I air dry after applying my spray leave ins and/or moisturizing leave in. I also tie the front of my hair down to keep the edges flat while the rest of the hair is loose to dry.
2. Protective Styles - Styles that will hide the ends away and help you retain length. My favorite styles are buns, french braids and anything that will keep my hair above the neck.
3. Low manipulation - I try to leave my hair alone. I would style my hair in simple styles such as buns or braids. I basically tie my hair down in the evening and gently use my fingers to redo the style. No need for a comb and as a result, you have less stress to your scalp.
4. Avoid tight hair styles - Tight hair styles will not only give you a migraine, but will add unnecessary stress to your hair and scalp. Results to tight hair styles are breakage, weak hair and loss of edges over time is called traction alopecia, something people do suffer from as a result of the things mentioned above.
5. Brushing with a soft brush - I don’t brush my hair a lot and do not recommend it either. Brushing with a hard brush can cause more damage in the long run than making those fly always look slick around the head. Using a hard brush can again, cause breakage and damage such as split ends. A soft brush is more gentle on the hair.
6. Relaxer Stretching - I already have a blog post and video about my relaxer stretching routine along with the benefits. What a relaxer does, it alters the hair structure of the hair where some of its’ properties are lost. If you are constantly relaxing your NG (new growth) every 4 weeks, you don’t have enough of it to see in order to relax. Therefore, you are subjected to overlapping which will cause weak and over processed hair.
7. Using a Wide Tooth Comb - Using a fine tooth comb will snag your hair and pull. A wise tooth comb will separate the hair more gently. If you do use a fine tooth comb, use a wide tooth comb first to remove the bulk of the tangles that you may have.
8. Combing from ends to scalp (roots) - This technique saved many of us from so much grief and saved us so much more hair! If you start combing from the top and bring it down, the tangles within will compress onto one another, create more tangles and knotting will occur. Starting from the bottom will remove the tangles almost effortlessly as you work your way up.
9. Detangle with conditioner - In this detangling video, I share how easy it is to manage my hair after being in a style that caused a matted mess. I use an inexpensive conditioner such as VO5 and finger detangle away prior to washing my hair. This techniques has also worked wonders on my daughter’s natural hair too.
10. Moisturize - I moisturize my hair ends and edges very often, almost every day. I use oil with my shampoos and conditioners when I was and/or deep condition. When I prepoo, I oil my scalp and it provides adequate moisture that will lessen the amount of dryness.
11. Satin Scarf - I sleep with one 95% of the time. Honestly, the other times are because of laziness… We are all human :-)!
12. Patience with your hair - I can not emphasize this enough! If you are not patient, you can do more damage to your hair. Frustration bring a slew of things such as pulling, ripping and using tools incorrectly thinking they will provide faster results. Allow enough time to style your hair, come up with ideas for your hair and/or find style or technique that makes it easier to do and change to the next.
13. Low Heat - It is good to see how much heat your hair can handle…but when using heat tools, start with a medium setting and use heat protector AT ALL TIMES! With a blow dryer, I allow my hair to dry to about 75% or more and then blow dry. Please note, do not use flat or curling irons on wet hair.
14. Protein treatments - This is to reinforce strength to the hair. When your hair has been exposed to many elements or if you have reached to a point where you neglected your hair, this is a good way to go. Another thing I want to add; if your hair happens to be weak prior to an expected relaxer treatment, a protein treatment is a good way to put in the strength into your hair at least a week prior.
15. Exercise, proper diet, water and mental health - Exercise as simple as walking can get your blood circulating throughout the body. And remember that blood carries nutrients along with oxygen to give your vital organs what it needs to function.
Proper diet has to do with healthy eating such as more vegetables, fruits and different ways to cook the foods you love to eat.
Water is definitely essential. Since water provides oxygen throughout your body, it also helps cleanse it too. Not only for your hair, but for your body as a whole.
And mental health, I added this here because a lot of us go through a lot of stress.
Whatever goes on in the inside always reflects on the outside sooner or later. When I say stress, I mean our life style, things that may be depressing and consume us. Find some time for a mental break…devotion, reading, exercising, spending time with loved ones, a day trip…anything that will calm your mind from a few hours to a day. We need to be healthy all around, not just our hair.
I hope this information benefits some or all!
And as always, God bless!
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