How to keep your hair healthy when wearing braids

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Braids are a great protective style and can last up to two months if taken care of properly, but what about the potential damage to your natural hair?

Darling Hair Stylist, Emelang Moyo, shares her secrets to keeping your hair healthy when wearing braids.

Shampooing and treatment

Go for a treatment before putting on a new set of braids as this will help with overall health of the hair and scalp, keeping your hair hydrated and strong.

It is wise to use a moisturising treatment for the scalp to replenish moisture, oils and nutrients often lost when hair is braided because the scalp is exposed to elements. This also helps prevent itchiness and flaking of the scalp.

Shampooing

The hair takes strain when it’s pulled and kept under braids. Once you have your braids in, make sure to shampoo with a hydrating shampoo and lukewarm water once every two weeks over a six-week period.  A hydrating shampoo does not only cleanse the hair and scalp but is gentle and will not leave your hair and scalp feeling coarse and dry.

Hair Spraying

Having braids doesn’t mean you can just forget about your hair. It is advisable to moisturise your hair and scalp with a good conditioning braid spray like African Pride Olive Miracle braid sheen spray at least two or three times a week. Ensure that you shampoo your hair to also remove product build up, as it leads to flaking and itchiness that is often confused with dandruff, which is a medical condition. If you tend to use either a hair food or braid spray more than you’re meant to, and end up with flacking product build up, then shampoo your hair instead of scraping it off as this may lead to damaging the scalp.

Deep Conditioning

When deep conditioning is done correctly and at the recommended time, it will be easier to create attractive styles with your braids knowing that you can show off your styled braids in confidence. After you’ve taken your extensions out, deep condition your hair to restore the moisture that was lost when you had hair extensions in, this will also replenish your hair and scalp in time for your next braid session.

Sleeping

All women know the challenges of waking up with dull-looking hair the morning after a good night’s rest.

Protect your braids and enjoy keeping them on longer by tying them in a wide holed hair net designed for your braid style. This keeps your hair intact while you sleep.  In the morning, you’ll need far less time to get that look just right!

Styling

When styling your braids with styling accessories it’s always good to be gentle so that you do not pull the roots of the hair off your scalp and cause baldness and scalp irritation.

Brushing with a soft brush around the hair line is very important especially when the braids are a couple of weeks old, this gives the style a neat blended and polished look.

“Invest in your hair, it is your one and only crowning glory,” concludes Emelang.

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