It’s summertime, which means some of us will be saying goodbye to our high-maintenance weaves and saying hello (with open arms!) to easy-breezy, hassle-free braids. There are many reasons why braids are, for most of us, the go-to-hairdo during sunny seasons. They require less effort with regards to maintenance. The time we spend styling our hair in the morning is practically halved because of them – they just make our lives so much easier. But this doesn’t mean you should neglect them – your natural hair is still beneath those extensions and the last thing you want to deal with is brittle, incredible dry, breaking hair once you have your set of braids removed. So make sure you include these preventative measures in your daily beauty routine, because no-one wants a receding hairline before their 30th birthday.
1. Moisturise Your Scalp!
Do this at least two to three times a week, using a leave-in conditioner. This will provide moisture and help prevent your hair from drying out and eventually breaking. If you need motivation, just think of the many times you brushed your hair after having your braids removed, and literally accumulating a golf-ball-sized fur ball of your broken, natural hair because you were too lazy to moisturise… Have we motivated you enough? Yes? Good! 🙂
If you prefer using moisturisers instead of conditioner, avoid purchasing products that include mineral oils. Rather opt for natural oils such as coconut oil or almond oil.
2. Extend that Healthy Braid Glow
Spray a light mist of oil sheen spray every day.
3. Work on Your Braids While You Sleep
Always wear a scarf when you go to bed, preferably one made out of silk. Its smooth texture will prevent your braids from frizzing and looking like a fuzzy disaster.
4. Don’t Keep Your Braids in for Longer than Six Weeks
Don’t do it! Your braids will end up looking notably untidy and braids that are left in for far too long will pull and gradually begin to damage delicate new hairs.
5. Wash Your Braids Every Two Weeks
We all dread washing our braids – especially box braids – which become incredibly heavy when they’re wet and take what feels like a lifetime to air-dry. Washing braids is a workout but if you want them to last longer, you have to wash them regularly.
Follow this cleaning method from About.com to maintain the fresh, neat appearance of your new braids:
- Place a small amount of shampoo into your hands
- Rub both hands together to form a lather
- Using the balls of your fingers, apply the lather to your scalp only.
- With circular motions, rub the shampoo into your scalp, being careful to place your fingers beneath your braids.
- Rinse thoroughly and squeeze excess water from your braids.
- Dry them with a soft towel by squeezing them in sections. Do not rub them dry.
If you struggle to fit a good wash into your busy week, just get a clean wash cloth, wet it with warm water and a very small amount of shampoo and ‘then part the hair, wiping your scalp down in sections’.
See?! Now you can rock your neat, gorgeous, shiny braids for longer! Now whip them back and forth like Willow Smith 😉
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