I have been natural 5-6 years at this point and I can say that I have had some serious setbacks that have slowed down my growth or caused me to cut large amounts of hair to start over. Every natural is different and every natural has their own forms of hair care sin like forbidden routines, tools, and products. However, there are some universal hair care sins that if you don’t get a handle on, you might end up damaging your hair and slowing your progress.
This is one of the biggest fears for natural. Moisturized juicy curls are the main goal for many but for some, it is harder to achieve. There are many ways to cause chronic dryness such as
- Using a sealant as a moisturizer- thick butter and oils are not moisturizers. When you use a sealant as a moisturizer you block your hair from being able to absorb more moisturizer.
- Not sealing your hair- I have high porosity hair, my hair is cuticle is constantly open. This means that while moisture flows in easily for me, it also flows out just as fast if I don’t use sealants.
- Not really getting moisture in- If you have low porosity hair, then your hair is normally closed. This means your hair needs more coaxing and help to push moisture in. Steam treatments and heated treatments would help moisture to penetrate the strands easier
- Leaving a style in for far too long- If you leave a style in for too long without re-moisturizing or washing your hair, you are leaving your hair in a dry state.
Dryness causes breakage, split ends, and single strand knots. All of these things will cause you too slow/impede your hair growth. A way to combat dryness is to add a deep conditioning treatment, spritz your hair and use more moisturizing products. Also, drink more water, what better way to moisturize your hair then attacking dryness from the inside and the outside.
Moisture Overload/Protein Overload
There are two on this one because both moisture and protein overload are two sides of the same coin. When you have dry hair and then decide to overcompensate washing every day or deep condition overnight frequently you can end up over moisturizing hair. Also, if you don’t allow your hair to fully dry and continue to add more water and moisture you can also experience moisture overload. Signs of moisture overload include limp hair that feels squishy/gummy and low elasticity, you pull your hair and it doesn’t bounce back.
Many people who experience moisture overload goes on the offensive by doing protein treatments in order to bring back balance. However, if you do too many protein treatments, or the treatment is too strong you will then end up in protein overload. The main sign of protein overload is brittle hair, it will feel crunchy dry and stiff. This means that the hair is in a sensitive moment where you have to be more gentle in order to avoid breakage.
In order to avoid these is to make small changes in lieu of drastic changes. When you see signs of dryness instead of deep conditioning every day or washing your hair every day, maybe add one extra deep conditioning treatment and add on from there. Be aware of what you are putting in your hair, I am protein sensitive, that means that oils like coconut oils or deep conditioning treatments with keratin or any other protein will cause my hair to be more brittle. If all else fails or if you are scared to do anything else, go to a professional so they can figure out the balance for you.
Build up is the reason why clarifying conditioners and shampoos. If you are a natural who doesn’t believe in using a strong shampoo but use heavy butter, oils, or styling products then you may experience this. When we speak of build up we usually talk about the cosmetic issues like residue and flakes, limp curls, lackluster dull hair. Build up causes dryness, hair follicle buildup, matting, and detangling issues. In order to avoid build up use a clarifying shampoo when you feel the residue and other signs of build up. It doesn’t have to be, nor should it be, every time you wash your hair.
If you look on Instagram you see so many pages that show different cute styles we can wear. This is a blessing for many people who have the restless syndrome and needs to switch it up often. That being said not allowing your hair to take a break causes breakage. You have to avoid the tension and protect your hair from always having to be a push, pulled, combed, and straightened. I suggest limiting styles, especially heat styles, to once or twice a year. Use products like hair color wax in order to get a color change. Also, when doing a style stick to low tension hairstyles.
Lack of nutrients
I wrote about natural hair diet, if you want your quickest possible hair growth then adding nutrients from the inside while having a good routine on the outside can only help. Hair is considered a nonessential part of the body so when there are any nutrient deficiencies you will 9 times out of 10 experience dry thinning hair as a result.
Nothing will cause problems like comparison. With social media being at the hands of many people, the comparison is bound to happen. There are so many #hairgoals websites and while looking at the pretty locks of other people, you can experience a sense of self-disdain. Striving to look like anyone else can cause you to adopt routines not meant for your hair or using damaging styling products and harsh chemicals. Love your hair for every kink curl or twist. know that you have to learn about your hair and that not every routine will work for you.
Take the time to learn about yourself and what your hair wants and needs. There are many youtube channels and websites that have information when it comes to hair care. Instead of being locked in one way be open to try new things that may bring your hair to new heights. Nothing says insanity like doing the same routine over and over and expecting different results!
I can say that I have experienced every single one these. Tell me down below, have you committed/experienced any of these hair car sins? checkout out latest post!