4C hair is beautiful and easy to care for as long as you know how to properly clean, moisturize, and maintain it. The best advice you can get on maintaining 4c hair is from women who have plenty of experience with it. Although everyone’s hair is unique, watching others' trials can reduce the stress of finding what works for you. So we reached out to community favorites, 4c vloggers Lulu, Kriss, Jessica, and Jenn to share their hair care do’s and don’ts that have been successes and failures of their regimens.
Photo Courtesy of Jessica Pettway
Photo Courtesy of Pure Estrogen
- Follow the directions on your products. The idea of deep conditioning overnight sounds great, but it really doesn't do much for your hair.
- Work your product into your hair to make it easier to detangle and give it extra stretch before styling.
- Don't wash hair that hasn't been detangled. Semi-stretched knotted hair is bad enough as it is. Try removing the knots from perfectly shrunken kinks.
- Don't comb dry or soaking wet hair. Lightly moisturize or spritz to make it pliable. Fingerdetangle each time that you can get away with it.
Photo Courtesy of NaturalMe4c
- Use moisturizing products. 4C hair is usually very dry naturally, so using anything harsh won’t be beneficial when it comes to retaining moisture.
- Cleanse your scalp thoroughly. 4C hair is known for having lots of shrinkage. As soon as water hits the tightly coiled strands, up it goes! Be sure your products/fingers are reaching your scalp to properly cleanse away dirt and product buildup. A good tool to try is the Vanity Planet Scalp Massaging Shampoo Brush. It works great on wash days.
- Don’t pile your coils on top of your head and rub products on your hair. This can cause excessive tangling, single strand knots, and frizz. Not to mention, it can be a nightmare to detangle and style later!
- Use a product that has lots of slip. Whether you fingerdetangle or you like to use hair tools, slip will not only save time, but it will allow most knots and tangles to unravel easily without excess strain. A great inexpensive detangler is Silkience Silky-Smooth Conditioner.
- Don’t rip through knots and tangles! If you feel a knot with your fingers/hair tool, stop and use your fingers to gently remove strands from the knot. Doing so will prevent unnecessary breakage. You may find that the root of the entire knot was only a couple strands.
- Don’t overuse styling products. This can lead to crunchy, greasy, weighed down, stiff, and or frizzy hair. Most of the time, a little product goes a long way.
Photo Courtesy of Jessica Pettway
- Wash your hair often! Water is a kinky girl's best friend.
- Don't think negatively about your texture. Embrace it and your hair will love you for it.
- Trim your hair regularly. Trimmed ends make styling easier.
- Don't use lathering shampoos too often. These type of shampoos dry kinky hair out and can result in breakage.
- Deep condition every week. If you want healthy hair, don't skip this step.
- Don't limit your styling because of your texture. Explore as many options as possible and have fun with your kinks.
- Wash your hair with conditioners or creamy shampoos. This will give your hair the added moisture and slip needed for kinky textures.
- Explore a stylish cut and shaping. This will give your kinks a whole new life.
Photo Courtesy of Jenn J.
- Minimal manipulation is key for my hair to thrive. I am very gentle with my strands so I make sure to wash my hair in twists and fingerdetangle over 90% of the time. This has made a tremendous change in my ends. In addition, deep conditioning is an absolute must. 4C hair craves moisture, but don't expect to achieve maximum moisture retention overnight. Moisture is a journey. You have to be consistent to achieve moisturized hair so I deep condition every week.
- Avoid drying products such as hard gels and daily styling. Typically, I will do a style that I know can last at least a week such as twists and updos.