Afro hair care can seem daunting at first but once you have the right knowledge, it’s simple. If you’re looking for the top tips to get long healthy hair, follow this guide.
Keep your hair moisturised
Dry hair leads to breakage and hair which is harder to manage. This is why building a great moisturising routine is important. Use a leave-in conditioner with water as the first ingredient to hydrate, followed by an organic hair oil and cream to seal in the moisture; keeping your hair soft, healthy and manageable. This is known as the LOC or LCO method.
Care for your hair at night
The rough fibre and absorbant material of cotton pillowcases can leave the hair dry and broken. To combat this, wrap your hair before bed with a silk or satin scarf or use a silk or satin pillowcase. These materials allow the hair to slide freely, reducing friction, frizz, and dryness.
Use effective and gentle detangling techniques to minimise breakage.
The best way to detangle your hair is with water and a conditioner which allows your comb to glide easily through the hair.
Split your hair into manageable sections so that the process is less overwhelming.
Use a wide-tooth comb or detangling brush and move slowly from the ends up to the roots to remove shed hair and tangles.
Leave it alone
Afro hair thrives when it is not manipulated often. Find low manipulation and protective styles which don’t require combing or redoing each day. This reduces the wear and tear on your hair and protects the delicate ends, allowing you to retain more length.
Regularly assess and trim your hair
When long hair is your goal, trimming can seem counterintuitive, however, this is exactly what will keep your afro hair healthy. All hair experiences damage, either from regular wear and tear from styling and detangling or from environmental factors, such as the hot sun drying out your hair. This damage leads to splits in the hair shaft which cannot be repaired. If not cut off, these will continue to split up to the root, leaving you with unhealthy hair. As you manage your hair, continuously look at your ends and see if there are splits. It may be time for a trim!
Minimise use of heat
All use of heat can be damaging to your hair strands when used too frequently and with high temperatures. As you use heat you are temporarily altering the protein bonds in your hair which make them weaker. On wash day, instead of blow-drying your hair, try air drying. You can also find ways to stretch your hair without heat, such as African threading or banding.
Love your hair
This may be the most important tip of them all. Learning to love your natural afro hair will make it easier to care for. Once you let go of unhealthy hair habits you will see how much it will flourish.
What is the best hair care tip you’ve heard?