There is more than one way to care for your hair but there is also more than one way to harm it. Actually, every aspect of your routine can be harmful to your tresses, and if using all of them then you are doing your hair a grave disservice. No need to worry as we are going to show you just how you can stop causing breakage in all areas of hair care maintenance.
Cleansing Too Often
Cleansing your tresses is a big component of healthy hair care. First off, it is good hygiene to cleanse your tresses and scalp regularly. The frequency depends on the individual’s schedule, hair needs, products, and particular climate, but the vast majority of curly girls cleanse at least once a week more or less. This essential component of healthy hair does not come without a price to be paid. You can create damage to your tresses by doing the very thing you need to keep your hair clean!
There is such a thing as cleansing too often. Curly and coily hair does not require as much cleansing as straight hair, as sebum does not travel down the hair shaft as fast as it does for straight textures. Gentle cleansers are suggested since several shampoos contain harsh surfactants (e.g. sodium lauryl sulfate) that strip the hair of its natural oils, which is the direct opposite of what your tresses need to prevent breakage. Co-washing or using sulfate-free shampoos is a better choice to combat tangles and breakage. Pre-pooing with a penetrating oil is another way to combat the negative effects of shampoo and detangling.
Detangling is more than just a crucial component of healthy natural hair. It is the art of removing tangles and shed hairs with your fingers, wide tooth combs, tangle teasers, or brushes. It is necessary to prevent and release the hair from mats and knots. However, detangling can cause just as much damage if done improperly.
You must be smart with detangling by using the proper tools and products. Pre-pooing is a great way to expedite detangling. Dampening the hair with water, adding conditioner, and detangling in sections are more ways to make detangling more efficient. Improper detangling will cause breakage. Hair is more vulnerable to breakage when soaking wet and dry hair is fragile, so softening the hair with water and adding lubrication with conditioner are perfect.
Now, you are probably wondering how is it possible to damage your hair while conditioning? Well, there is such thing as too much of a good thing. Protein treatments and deep conditioners are necessary in your healthy hair routine, but there needs to be a balance. Using protein in your hair too often will cause your hair to become brittle. Once a month is good but more than that is too much and all the strength you are trying to give your strands will only make them dry, brittle, and damaged. Not deep conditioning regularly is just as bad. Excessive deep conditioning can create compromise the elasticity of your hair. You should be deep conditioning after cleansing to help fight hair damage and temporarily strengthen your hair after the trauma of the washday. It is a treat to your tresses so do not skimp on it, especially as we are embarking on colder weather.
High Manipulation Styling
Hair styling is another necessary portion of natural hair, but the more manipulation your hair endures creates more opportunities for breakage. This is why many naturals choose protective styling to lessen manipulation on their strands. Less manipulation leads to less damage. Our hair is more fragile than naturally straight hair and therefore retains more length and moisture with less styling.
Sleeping On Cotton
Having a nighttime routine is the best way to stave off breakage. Just recklessly flopping on your pillow is not in the best interest for any curly. Cotton pillowcases and sheets are not nice to our tresses, as they can either whisk away the natural oils or cause friction, thus creating split ends. Sleep with either a satin scarf or a satin bonnet. You can also sleep on a satin pillowcase with your pineapple like I do!
How do you prevent breakage throughout your regimen?