curly kid haircare
Photo by Debi Bishop — Getty Images

Children learn by watching and imitating. They will wear our jewelry and clothes out of curiosity. We should start early to teach our natural haired kids how to care for their hair. Remember to always compliment your child’s hair. Say nice and motivating things while styling their hair. Getting their hair done or doing it themselves should never be a negative experience. It is not a chore. It is a fun exploratory time.

Here are a few tips on how to teach your child to love and take care of their hair.

1. Show them how to wear a bonnet

This can start from as early as 4 or 5 years old. Teaching your child to wear satin bonnets and shower caps are excellent ways to protect their hair from damage.

2. Start simple

From 1st grade it is fun to begin teaching them about moisturizing and sealing. Be sure to keep it super simple for your little ones. It can be stressful when made complicated. Initially, start by letting them do a simple task like putting moisturizer on their own hair:

  • Divide your child’s hair into small sections.
  • Put some leave in in their hands, let them rub their hands together and apply it to their hair. It doesn’t need to be perfect or precise. They are just getting the mechanics of it for now.
  • Comb and style that section of hair. By doing this it gives them something to look forward to doing as you complete each section. They will be eager to put the moisturizer on the next section of hair. Let them hold your hair tools and pass them to you as your little helper.

Note: Be sure not to make it time consuming. Children dislike tedious tasks.

3. Introduce them to washing, slowly

When you teach a child to wash and detangle their hair will vary depending on the ages of your children. If they are very young, you will want to keep the water out of their face when washing and rinsing. There are many visor style hats that are made to prevent water from running on to your child’s face, which will make the whole process more bearable for them.

Teach older children how to wash and detangle their hair. Talk about what you are doing as you wash the hair and why. Do the same for detangling. Explain what the products and tools are that you are using to get it done.

Eventually let your child wash and detangle their hair one section at a time. Sometime in the near future, they will be caring for their hair almost entirely on their own. It will be such a great accomplishment!

Of course this is done to your preference. Demonstrate on your hair and on theirs how to do each step of this simple routine. The age ranges are just suggestions. This will vary for each child. If he/ she is not interested in caring for their hair at this moment, be creative. Try to make it more fun. If that doesn’t work now that is fine, just give it some time and try again at a later date.