All Articles Tagged "detangling"
I recently read an article that said women shouldn’t go natural because no one has time to wet their hair every day and moisturize every night. I nearly choked on my dinner. Do people do this? Realistically, are people out there tending to their strands at every waking moment and following “the rules” to a tee? I find that hard to believe. While we are all prone to stressing over the strict do’s and don’ts of proper hair care every now and then (guilty as charged!), I’ll let you in on a little secret: Sometimes, and perhaps I shouldn’t be telling you this, it’s OK to let some things fall by the wayside for a little bit. Besides, stressing about doing everything right all the time will only make your hair fall out anyway, right? Here are a few so-called hair rules you should feel free to break.
I was never a fan of science class. Even today if someone starts spewing large scientific words, I mentally check out. However the further I delve into maintaining healthy hair, the more I realize that the science of my hair matters. Not only does the science of my hair matter towards keeping it healthy, it matters because it helps to save me money. Being a product junkie isn’t cheap. Nor is running to the store to try every new product because you can’t find the right product that works in your hair. Having a basic understanding of the science of your hair will help you save time, money and some peace of mind. So let’s minimize the hair frustration, get you back some valuable time in your schedule and help keep a few more dollars in your bank account by looking at the 4 basic science tips everyone needs to know about their hair.
1, Your hair and nails are the last part of your body to receive nutrients from your food intake.
Yes it is reaching the point of redundancy to constantly have to read that what you eat affects your hair. But it is of the utmost importance. Because your hair and nails are the last part of the body to receive nutrients, if you are shortchanging yourself by drinking sugary beverages while eating over processed foods, your body will stave off nutrients from your hair to ensure that the rest of your body gets what it needs. So all you ladies skipping out on the broccoli, spinach and water, while heading straight for the Doritos Locos taco and Grande Spice Pumpkin Latte, we’re talking to you.
2. Internal is greater than external.
You could be doing all the right things on the outside to your hair, but your internal well being trumps all of that. If you are experiencing severe stress, going through hormonal changes due to pregnancy of menopause and/or have blood flow problems due to medical issues or lack of exercise – your hair will be affected. We can apply any and all topical products, wear protective styles for 5 years and cease use of any heated products like flat irons. That still won’t trump the impact that your internal well being as on your hair.
3. Maintaining hair at a neutral pH balance is key for all hair types.
Whether relaxed or natural, the pH balance of your hair is important for all. pH balance affects how the cuticle of hair lays and is very integral in the relaxing process. If you want to minimize frizz or prevent your hair from being a poof ball, knowing how the pH level of your hair works is key.
4. The importance of detangling is a scientific fact.
You have to detangle your hair, no way around it. It’s best to detangle hair prior to washing it and you will see a guaranteed change when styling your hair. Detangling your hair prevents excessive shedding, knots, more tangles and frizzy hair. You’re hair goes through three stages of growth on a continuous basis: anagen, catagen and telogen. The telogen stage is the shedding phase. You are continuously shedding hair on daily basis, just as you hair grows on a daily basis. If you have extra curly and/or kinky hair, your shed hairs are prone to get caught in the curls/kinks of the rest of your hair. Detangling your hair will loosen those shed hairs from your head and pull them out without catching them into tangles. Ever had a bunch of string or yarn that was in knots? You get it out of knots by taking strands out individually, same as detangling. Shed hair will tangle and you will shed because of the phases of your hair. Having a good detangling process that you start at the onset of your wash routine will help you out all the way down to styling your hair. Now think of it, all you ladies that fuss over your weaves that tangle and shed, guess how you can prevent that too? Yes girl, detangle it and brush it in a downward motion.
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Taking care of your hair is right up there with other basics like bathing and clipping your nails. There are certain things that you do to make sure that you’re not all unkempt and smelly. Hey, it’s the little things in life. But some of these things can be overdone – especially when it comes to your hair, and it can be detrimental to the health of your precious tresses. But what are they and what exactly is the limit?
One very ordinary act that can easily be overdone is brushing. Using the right tool to brush your hair is great. It keeps those dreaded fairy knots at bay and stimulates the scalp to produce sebum – a natural oil that helps keep hair healthy, but whether you’re using a Denman or a Goody, nonstop brushing can cause split ends and hair loss. The repetitive motion can weaken strands, which is the last thing that you want. Black hair is already pretty fragile, so stressing it with constant pressure will eventually cause it to snap. If you feel the need to brush more often than not, a nice alternative is finger detangling – that way it’s easy to detect any tangles without any unnecessary ripping.
Protective styling is another wonderful way of maintaining hair, especially for those trying to retain length. The ends of the hair are the oldest, thus making them the most susceptible to breakage. Protective styling hides the ends from the environment, harsh elements and keeps hair from rubbing against objects that may rip or snag it (cotton pillows for instance). There are plenty of cute choices including twists, buns, braids and weaves. The damage can still be done though if the style is switched up for work every day, your best friends birthday party this weekend and that job interview next week. Repeatedly taking the hair down and manipulating it into another fashion can make strands brittle and weak from over stimulation, tugging and pulling, causing breakage in the end. The idea is to pick something that will last awhile (or at least a few days) and give you and your hair a much needed rest from styling.
We all love to saturate hair with a nice deep conditioner and get it back to a healthy state via protein, moisture or both. This is great to do with either a homemade or store-bought conditioner. Of course the texture of your hair, any chemical straighteners or color will determine the individual frequency for conditioning, but the standard rule of thumb is once a week for infusing strands with moisture, while protein treatments used to strengthen hair should be done even less often. If you push it, you may be in jeopardy of damaging your tresses. Over hydrating hair can result in stringy, soft strands that will be very pliable. Too much protein will have the opposite effect and cause hair to become stiff and brittle. Unfortunately, these both have the same end result – broken pieces.
Hair butters, creams and even some products that give hair hold like flaxseed gel can have good ingredients and help set a killer style, but an over abundance or not washing them out after the fact can have an ill effect on even the healthiest of heads. Applying too much can make hair stringy, greasy and not exactly something you or anyone else would want to run fingers through. To avoid this, try testing a new product on a small patch of hair to get an idea for the consistency, then feel free to apply all over, starting with a little and adding more as needed. Using too much can also negatively affect the scalp if not cleansed thoroughly on a regular basis. This can cause build-up, which traps dirt and makes it hard for nutrients to reach strands. A good clarifying shampoo or apple cider vinegar treatment should do the trick.
Speaking of washing hair, it can be beneficial for the hair and scalp, but if done in excess your mane can become incredibly dry (red, frizzy and broken). Use of shampoos with sulfates can only dramatically increase this problem since some of these detergents are known to strip hair of moisture. Many people have turned to co-washing which is using only conditioner to cleanse the hair, but some can’t live without the squeaky clean feeling. If you fall into the latter category, once a week with a sulfate-free shampoo such as DermOrganic Conditioning Shampoo will get the job done.
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This article is for you if you’ve thought or said the following things:
“I have a child with a head full of hair and I don’t know what to do with it!”
“Oh baby, my child’s hair looks nothing like mine, what do I do?”
“Oh baby, my child’s hair is so dry/fine/curly/kinky/thick, I’m just trying to figure out how to keep it healthy!”
Are you a parent who is struggling to figure out how to deal with your child’s hair because they don’t have a similar texture to your own? You’ve mastered the art of your hair and then your bundle of joy comes into the world with a beautiful head of hair that you just can’t figure out. Or maybe you always go to the salon to care for your hair and it’s not a good idea to try and convince your two-year-old to sit still to get their hair done at the salon too. It’s a common problem that plenty of parents face, but I’m here to ease the struggle.
Detangling is an important step in making sure your shed hairs don’t cause breakage by knotting up with the rest of your hair. Raking random combs or brushes through your hair can make all the difference between properly detangling and just grazing the surface. It’s best to pick a comb or brush based on your hair’s density, strand thickness and hair type (curly/coily/straight), so what will work for one person may not work for you. I generally prefer detangling using my fingers and combs because I feel brushes rip my hair out, but other girls swear by brushes. Also keep in mind that detangling on wet or dry hair can have an effect on the results you get. If you haven’t found your go-to detangling brush/comb, here’s a list for you…
(Prices may vary depending on where you purchase them)
I’ve always maintained the belief that my hair is one of my many fashion accessories. The style I choose to wear it in is dependent on how I feel. I can wear braids, real hair, fake hair, natural, or relaxed—whatever floats my boat really. However, I am a real stickler when it comes to hair care. There’s no way I’m going to spend an arm and a leg on hair that is not mine and not know how to care for what grows from my head.
Last spring I received a phone call from a dear friend (we will call her Bre) about a major episode she was having with her hair. Thinking back, it’s hilarious, but at the time it was no laughing matter. The phone call went something like this:
Bre: OMG Vik (my middle name) I just took out my weave after three months and my hair feels like dreads!
Me: Wait, why was your weave in for three…
Bre: *panicked*…. after I took out all the tracks, my hair was so dry! I didn’t comb it or anything; I just went into the shower to wash it. OMG I’m seriously about to go to the barbershop and have them shave it all off Vik!!
There was more to the conversation but I believe the point is clear. The truth is everyone has experienced self-inflicted mishaps with their hair at one point or another and I am yet to meet a black woman who was born with the understanding of how to care for her hair. In fact, most of us were raised with myths that still prevail today. Oh, and for the record, Bre knows much better now.
So let’s talk about what went wrong:
1. Leaving the weave in for three months - Sew-ins are effective as protective and low manipulation styling, but don’t forget about your hair. If you go bald what exactly will you have to sew on to?
I’m not a frequent “sewer-inner”, but if I decide to get one, it stays no longer than four weeks in my hair. I know girls who successfully leave their weaves in longer, but that’s my limit.
Before the sew-in is installed, I make sure that I do a protein treatment and a deep condition. I also moisturize and seal my hair to avoid brittleness. As far as washes go, I continue with my weekly washing. Depending on how far apart your tracks are sewn in, you might be able to reach your scalp (try shampooing using an applicator bottle). The same goes with moisturizing your cornrows under the weave. If there is enough space between your tracks, you should be able to get some moisture in.