This week I wanted to address breakage, because I know many of us are battling with this in our journeys. Over time I’ve learned much more about taking care of my hair and its only right to share the knowledge.
From my experience, the two major causes of breakage are DRY HAIR and TANGLES. Period.
- Dry hair
Dry hair (lacking in moisture) is brittle hair. Anything brittle breaks. Moisture gives hair hair elasticity which prevents it from breaking.
- The sure way to work around dryness is moisturizing. Other than on wash day, obviously, I moisturize my hair mid week as well. By moisturize I don’t mean oiling. Remember when you’re hair was dry and you would lay your head on your mum’s lap as she oiled your hair? Good old days. Moisture means water though, so just spray on some water then use oil to seal; be sure to either twist or braid it afterwards if its not in extensions. I’ve noticed a big change in my hair’s health because of gool ol’ water.
- You may also want to avoid wearing your shrunken hair out for long periods of time. Our hair has a hard time keeping moisture because of all those kinks and coils. Moisture rarely gets to the old and brittle ends when your hair is in a gravity-defying afro, so they break off and you don’t retain length. Opt for stretched out protective hairstyles like twists, braids, cornrows, flat twists… These keep your strands straighter and allows the moisture you add to slide down the strands.
Yes, tangles are devil spawn. More often than not, we encourage them without realizing it. This is a long list of causes, I’ll have to break it down
- Once again, wearing your hair out for too long encourages your hair strands to coil around each other = tangles. I now wear my hair out for only one day in the week, Saturday before washing it on Sunday. Also because the week is just too busy to be dealing with hair.
- Wash days are the biggest culprit! If you hop into the shower with your hair in one big mess, please stop. Water makes your hair swell and those tangles just become harder to remove. Then you go ahead and rub and scrub shampoo into it, making those tangles (that you just created) even tighter. Then after deep conditioning, you want to comb out the many tight tangles = breakage. Try washing your hair in already detangled sections and tell me if it helps. See how I do here.
- Sleeping with your hair in one big mess with no silk/satin scarf. Need I say more? I mean the twisting and turning on your pillowcases. You’re literally passing a pair of shears through your hair!
- Wearing protective styles for too long. Our hair sheds, always. So having a protective styles for weeks on end means those shed strands of hair are not being removed. They are just tangling up with the rest of your hair. Then when you finally undo your hair, you complain of extreme shedding. How long your keep a style in is really up to you. Just be sure to moisture, wash and condition your hair regardless.
Other causes include:
- Over-manipulation; sometimes you need to leave your hair alone
- Combing dry hair, our hair is weakest when dry because it lacks enough elasticity.
- And ofcourse, tight and tiny extensions.
You have been warned!
In summary, if you have kinky coily hair, water and sections are your friend.
That’s what I’ve learnt so far. I hope it helps. Feel free to add more in the comment section for everyone else to read. May we grow healthy fros together 🙂
See you on the next one ❤