When we put protective styles in our hair, the goal is that our hair grows in a highly undisturbed manner.

The idea of protective styling is to protect our ends from breakage. However, we may forget to nourish two of the most important areas of the hair growth process--the scalp and the length of our hair. It can be a guessing game figuring out which products will work best and most effectively in nourishing the hair underneath our extensions. I’ve done some field tests on my own head of braids and have found the best brands to nourish the hair underneath.

  1. Carol’s Daughter Mimosa Hair Honey Collection

During one of my many trips down the beautiful hair isle of Target, I stumbled across these new additions and then I braided my hair to give them a try. The mimosa flower plays an integral role in alleviating side effects of having extensions; after having box braids installed, I've used the traditional mimosa hair honey to soothe my scalp of tension and moisturize.

The product line consists of three new items that address each step of caring for the hair during a protective style. Calming Tension Spray worked great for the initial first week of braids, lessening the discomfort of tightness from having the braids put in.

After having put different oils and other moisturizing products on my hair, the Scalp Treatment worked great on removing product buildup. Usually when my hair has product build up with extensions, I follow with a shampoo. With this scalp treatment, it was not necessary.

For a full conditioning of my scalp and the hair in between my braids the Conditioning Mist not only moisturized my scalp but also gave all of my hair a healthy shine. It conditioned both my natural and synthetic extensions evenly without leaving an overly greasy appearance.

  1. Girl+Hair Under Hair Care

This product line is unique in that it comes specifically with a cleanser, leave-in conditioner, and restoring balm that include a variety of botanical extracts to balance the scalp and prevent flakes from dryness and irritation.

Sensitive scalps can experience irritation from friction with synthetic extensions. The cleanser and leave-in conditioner both include tea tree oil, neem oil, and chamomile oil to minimize itchiness and potential flaking from exposure to free radicals in the atmosphere.

After cleansing and conditioning the scalp, the restoring balm can be used for the purposes of moisturizing the scalp and protecting dry, damaged hair from breakage caused by friction.

  1. Alikay Naturals

Weaved into the amazingness of this product line are some hidden gems that provide much support for irritation and tension caused by thigh protective styles. Some of the great ingredients included into these products are tea tree oil, aloe vera juice, and sweet almond oil.

The Moisturizing Black Soap Shampoo penetrates deep into the scalp and hair to remove product buildup from continuous moisturizing. The tea tree oil acts as an anti bacterial and stimulant for growth. The combination of butters and oils play a role in moisturizing the hair at the base of the scalp and strands intertwined between extensions.

The lemongrass leave in conditioning spray contains lemongrass and aloe vera juice to alleviate stress on the hair’ primarily stress caused from heavy tension like that of having box braids. When using the Black Soap Shampoo followed by the conditioning spray, the calmed the tension allowing the braids to have a more fluid movement at the base of each braid.

  1. Next Level Concepts

I loved many things about this product line. Some of which were the benefits that I noticed when using these products for the last two summers on my hair.

The first product was the high beam elixir. This product contains ingredients that act as sun filters to prevent sun damage. It created a weightless barrier around my real strands and hair follicles allowing my hair to grow at its full potential. It also gave my braids an even amount of shine from root to tip without buildup.

The second product was the 4-ounce fluid. Its recommended use is for a hot oil treatment for the hair scalp to infuse moisture deep into the strands. It works great for improving circulation with its peppermint oil infusion.

  1. Nubian Nature

This product line is simple in its composition but powerful in its results. The key ingredients to its nourishing qualities while for under extensions are palmarosa oil and soybean oil. Both penetrate deeply into the strands and scalp while helping to produce natural oils in the hair. When I tried out the Hair Essence there was a noticeable difference in the section of my scalp that tends to flake more than usual.

The Mango-Citrus Nourish Crème is another key component of this line because it protects against many environmental causes. This crème creates a barrier between the hair and harsh weather conditions; it protected the intertwined sections of my braids and scalp against the frigid cold from moisture loss. This product would work great in the warmer months as well from the harsh effects of the sun.

To sum it up

Sometimes out of sight out of mind is a good proverb to live by--but when we protective style, the hair underneath our extensions still exists. It may be out of sight but must still be treated with love and care.

Pictured: @chocolateme in Big Chop Hair Extensions