Planning to start your natural hair journey soon? If yes, then congratulations! Natural hair gives you the freedom to try out versatile styles without having to break the bank. However, at times, it can also feel monotonous, and having to create a different style every time you wake up, can be at times tiring. Luckily, you can always take the much-needed break by trying out protective styling. But before you run to the nearest salon, here are things you should know about protective styles.
It’s Important You Find the Right Style for You
Just as the name suggests, protective hairstyles protect your hair. They limit the stress caused by environmental factors — hence preventing dryness and breakage. However, not all protective hairstyles you come across will keep your hair looking good. Therefore, don’t just get box braids done because they look good on your best friend. Take time to learn whether they will work for you. To put it simply, go for a style that looks not only good but also protective as well.
Protective Styles are Only as Good as Your Prep Game
Protective styling means you can jump in the pool without a care in the world and wake up and leave the house without spending endless hours on your hair. However, most people assume that they can always run to the salon whenever they feel like they need a break. It doesn’t work that way. Even if you are going to get to something as simple as Bantu knots or a few cornrows, prep is a must and is essential. Therefore, before you leave your house, make sure you use the right products to wash and condition your hair.
However, beyond conditioning, you also need to moisturize properly. This is essential because that hair will be on for a few weeks. Failing to do so means you’ll be met with brittle, dry, and fragile hair when you undo those box braids.
Don’t Stay with One Style for Too Long
Protective styles are great, but it can quickly turn into a problem if that style stays on your head for far too long. Wearing the same style for too long causes your hair to tangle, and if you’ve got extremely curly hair, it can become matted. This will make it not only hard to undo but also means you’ll experience massive hair breakage. As much as that style grants you a stress-free lifestyle, wear it for four to six weeks max.
Always Keep Your Scalp Clean
Protective styling will keep your hair in good shape only if you do your part. Getting those cornrows done with a head full of dandruff means that the next day, you’ll wake up scratching your scalp. In a few days, that style will be all messy and looking as if it has been on for ages. Ensure you properly wash your scalp to keep that style looking all glamorous for long.
Invest in Great Products
As noted, moisture is the key to keeping your hair healthy even with protective styling. While you can always get it moisturized at your local salon, it would be a much wise idea if you did it yourself, using products that you normally use on your natural hair. Also, investing in these products means you’ll have them with you every day, so you’ll never go a day without adequately moisturizing your hair.
Getting protective styles when you’ve kept your hair natural for long is the best way to maintain your hair health. However, before you do — make sure you note and put into action the above tips.