The mistake most us of us make is thinking that we are excused from taking good care of our hair while it’s in a protective style. Poor maintenance can cause you to lose a lot of hair and that would have destroyed the purpose since protective styles are supposed to help retain length.
So here are some tips:
- - Spritz hair with a mix of water and favorite light oil (preferably Olive Oil) every 2-3 days. You can add glycerin to the mix as glycerin helps pull moisture into your hair. Note however, that the opposite is what you’ll get during the dry/harmattan season.
- - DO NOT pull braids too tightly when styling if you don’t want to have ‘mama iyabo’ (no edges ^_^)
- - If your scalp/hair feels dirty; please wash. I prefer co-washing because I feel like I can’t completely rinse of the shampoo. Conditioners aren’t as harsh on the hair.
a- The yarn can get really heavy when wet so you might want to wash your hair in your bathroom sink with the braids lying in it as you wash your scalp and hair.
b- After washing, squeeze out the excess water and use a towel to take off the water remaining. If you don’t want to walk around with wet/damp hair, you can use a blow dryer to speed up the drying process.
When your braids get dry, continue spritzing hair with your Oil and water mix.
- - For those of us who oil our scalp, you can use your favorite oil on your scalp. At most, twice every week.
|Threaded ends of braid|
a- If you plan on re-using your yarn, use a scissors to cut off the threaded ends, and loosen braids.
b-When you get to the roots don’t just pull out the yarn. Rather, take your time in separating your hair from the yarn so that you don’t pull out a patch of hair together with the yarn.
c- After taking down all the braids, apply some Olive Oil to your hair for easy detangling.
- - Work in sections for easy detangling
- - Apply Olive Oil to each section as you go and patiently separate your hair strands to remove the tangles using your fingers. Remember that extra care should be taken at the roots.
- - Using a wide tooth comb, properly detangle hair and take off the hairs that you had shed over time
This is optional as most naturals don’t comb their hair dry. My tight coils are fragile when wet and so I don’t think it’s a good idea to wash it when it is tangled. I tried it once and I regretted it... well, to each his own sha…
Note: Combing should only be done after hair has been properly detangled using fingers. And always begin at the ends when using a comb.
- - After the above, you can proceed to wash and deep condition your hair. DON’T FORGET TO DEEP CONDITION!
- Your scalp might feel a bit sore after loosening, braiding, detangling and rebraiding. So instead of washing immediately give your scalp a day or two to rest. And that’s were head wraps come in handy.
Remember that I'm not an expert. This regimen worked for me and you can develop one that'll suit your hair type.