Picture this: You wake up, get out of bed, and head to the kitchen to make yourself some breakfast. On your way to the fridge you glance out the window and…snow. You roll your eyes in slight annoyance. Time to protective style.
Whether you are protecting your hair from the ever-changing Canadian climate, tired of your twist-outs, frustrated with transitioning, or if you just want to change it up – protective styling is a great way to protect your hair and make it lower maintenance.
The BIGGEST mistake women make when protective styling is braiding their hair up and ignoring it for two months. If your hair is in braids make sure you follow these 9 essential maintenance guidelines. You’ll thank me when you unravel your braids and your hair is healthy, strong, and long.
1. Protect Your Hair At Night
Many black women were taught since we were young that tying our hair up at night is just good practice. So we tie our hair when it is out or when we want to keep our weave looking fresh – but when we’re wearing braids we throw all of that good practice out the window. Covering your head with a satin headscarf at night not only keeps your edges looking fresh it also protects your roots from drying out when you sleep. If you find satin headscarves uncomfortable then place a satin pillowcase over your pillow for a similar type of protection. If you are really a keener – do both. Wrap your head and invest in a satin pillowcase. If your headscarf comes off in the night you still have the protection of your satin pillowcase. I had a stylist who could tell when I had skipped a few days of wearing my satin headscarf. She would take one look at my scalp and scold, “Your head is dry! What did you do?!”
2. Keep Your Scalp Moist
This is one thing I need to get better at. Sometimes I think I’m too busy to get out my spray bottle and spray my hair. That is definitely not true. Giving your roots a quick spritz should take you no longer than a few minutes – 5 minutes maximum. Our hair is no different than any other living thing. It needs moisture to survive – and the best type of moisture is water. Our roots get thirsty and they need watering. Our roots do not need heavy gels and oils – those clog our pores and make it more difficult for our roots to absorb moisture. Our roots need plain old water to thrive and survive.
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