How to make sure your preferred hairstyle respects the health of your curls and Afro hair? Contrary to popular beliefs, braids or weaves are far from promoting hair growth. They can cause hair loss and damage!
So, here are five tips to avoid breakage and hair loss when you make protective hairstyles for your Afro or curls:
1. Adopt a curl-friendly protective style
Protective hairstyles essentially serve to protect the ends and lengths of your hair, and to avoid daily manipulations that break hair. In fact, you don't have to use extensions, which often dry out hair when synthetic. Opt as much as possible for a style with your own hair (twists, cornrows, buns...) or good quality extensions. Our extension suggestions are crochet braids, yarn braids, clip-ins, wigs, or headscarves.
2. Choose a professional who respects your hair
If you go to an Afro salon for protective hairstyling, choose who you pay for wisely! 90% of the time, damage caused by extensions occurs during installation: a stylist who doesn't like natural hair, aggressive brushing, too hot drying, strands too tight or too fine at the root, questionable products... Above all, don't hesitate to communicate your needs before and during styling! Because after, the damage may already be done...
3. Prepare the scalp and hair
Make sure to have clean and fresh skin by shampooing at least a week before, followed by deep moisturizing careone or two days before, so that your hair remains as supple and hydrated as possible even without regular water supply. If your hair is already dirty, dry, and damaged before installing your hairstyle, you risk damaging it further.
4. Do not keep the protective hairstyle for more than a month
How long to keep a protective hairstyle? There is no established rule! It depends on the style, your schedule, but above all, the condition of your hair. Some people can keep braids for a month, others can barely tolerate 10 days. Take the time to monitor the condition of your scalp: no one likes to have dust crusts at the root! Beyond a month, keeping a protective hairstyle can be problematic, as the hair begins to be very dry, tangled, and poorly cleaned. Result: phenomenal breakage when removing them.
5. Do not constantly use extensions
If you're so hooked on extensions that you're no longer sure what your beautiful hair looks like, it may be time to take a break! The constant use of braids and weaves is the biggest factor in traction alopecia and hair breakage in Black and mixed-race women. Try to space out the installation of extensions by at least two or three weeks. Plus, you'll save money!
And you, what is your favorite protective hairstyle?