Sometimes as a naturalista, you might feel as if your hair could do with a bit of a change. For some people change can come in the form of straightening their hair for a few days, adding clip-ins or wearing a weave. However, if you’ve been thinking about dyeing your hair and you’re unsure whether it will cause your hair to break, consider these things.
Hair dye can cause damage to your hair if your hair is already suffering from some form of damage. That includes breakage, excess shedding or scalp dryness.
To reduce the chances of your hair breaking when it has been dyed, it’s best to only dye your hair if it is in optimal condition prior. If you’ve noticed that your hair shows any signs of damage whatsoever, then don’t dye it. Simply wait until it’s in a better condition before going ahead.
Another thing to bear in mind is that semi-permanent dyes (which last for about 5-7 washes) are a better alternative if you’re simply looking to add colour to your hair or you want a quick change of style or a new look. permanent dyes aren’t necessarily damage-free but they are less strenuous on your hair.
Furthermore, if you want to avoid breakage when dyeing your hair, make sure that you keep your hair very well conditioned and moisturised after colouring it. Hair dyes are notorious for causing dryness which in turn leads to thinning and breakage and it’s for this reason that so many women experience signs of damage after dyeing their hair. To keep your newly coloured hair in great condition, deep condition it at least once a month and co-wash (which means washing your hair with conditioner only) on a weekly basis.
Be sure to trim any damaged ends and moisturise your hair like there’s no tomorrow! Seriously, moisturising can literally make or break your hair’s health. I can’t stress the importance of moisturising it.
If you’re unsure about how to moisturise, do the following:
- Co-wash your hair once a week
- Apply a silicone-free, moisturising hair lotion to it twice a day
- Follow with a good, natural oil like jojoba or olive oil
- Repeat steps 2 and 3 twice a day. Try moisturising once in the morning and once at night.
Keeping your hair in good condition after it has been coloured isn’t impossible. You just need to be more mindful of your hair’s health and fragility and moisturise on a regular basis.
As we nearer further and further into the summer, many of us experience damaged hair. Hair damage can take various forms including split ends, single strand knots, hair thinning, frizz and even traction alopecia.
Hair damage can also be particularly frustrating for those of us with curly, kinky and afro textured hair because our hair is dryer and therefore tends to be more prone to breakage.
However, most types of hair damage can be cured. Here are 4 of the best ways to cure your damaged curls.
Use the best conditioner for your hair type and texture. You know your hair best and you therefore know what products on your hair. In order to find the best conditioner you do have to experiment a little by testing different products on your hair. Once you find a great conditioner that really nourishes your hair, hold onto it and make it your go-to co-washing product.
Focus on protection. If you have split ends, lots of single strand knots or hair breakage then there’s a possibility that you’ve been over-manipulating your hair. To reverse the damage done it’s best to keep your hair protected. That might mean parting with your favourite hairstyles (like braids or weaves) and instead, focus on wearing your hair in simple styles that elevate the hair away from the shoulders. Good options for protective styling are ponytails, high buns and twists. Wear your hair in protective styles until it’s in better condition.
Don’t towel dry your hair. Towels and curly/afro hair don’t mix. If you need to dry your hair use a cotton t-shirt because it’s softer, reduces frizz levels and won’t cause your hair to rip or tear. Put simply, cotton t-shirts are amazing for drying natural hair.
Get your hair back to tip top shape. The best way to do this is to make sure you are deep conditioning your hair at least once every 2 weeks until your hair is restored to good health. Make sure you use a good deep conditioning treatment or hair mask that contains natural ingredients, is silicone free and contains good proteins.
If you’d like more advice on caring for your curls join our VIP newsletter list.
Till next time,
A while ago, I received a message from an aspiring naturalista who was stuck with a problem.
Question: ‘I relaxed my hair five weeks ago but now I miss my curls! Is there a way to get them back?’
For those of us who’ve been natural for a while, it’s easy to forget that going natural is a process. It’s nothing short of a journey that involves learning a lot about black hair and then applying that knowledge into our daily hair regimens. However, for women who have relaxed hair, it can often seem as if it’s easy to go natural and that it can happen over night. That’s not true.
Now to answer this lady’s question. If you relaxed your hair less than two months ago there will be no easy way to go natural. The simplest option is to cut off your relaxed hair and rock a TWA (teeny weeny afro).
However, before doing that, I strongly recommend that you take some time to really figure out if going natural is for you.
Answer these 3 questions:
- Do you know how to maintain natural hair or are you willing to learn about natural hair maintainaence?
- Are you committed to going natural or do you just want a bit of a hairstyle change? If you just want to switch hairstyles up, I recommend trying a natural wig or weave so that you can get the natural look without going natural straight away. Doing so will allow you to figure out whether natural hair is really for you.
- Are you self-conscious about your hair? Natural girls often have to be confident about their hair because natural hair isn’t the norm in most places. Furthermore, no matter how you rock your hair, it’s important to be confident any way.
If after answering these questions you decide that you still want to go natural, go for it!
Start off by doing some research on natural hairstyles, natural hair maintenance and find some natural hair quotes to give you inspiration.
Then consider either cutting off your relaxed ends or growing out your natural hair until you’re ready to cut the ends off at a later date.
Throughout the transitioning journey keep your hair really conditioned and moisturised so that it is in the best possible condition.
Transitioning can be a complex process but if you follow the above advice you should be in good stead to do it with ease.
PS. If you’d like more tips on transitioning don’t forget to subscribe to my newsletter where I share advice, tips and hair care treats.
Now, in the comments below tell me how you transitioned to natural. What was it like? Did you enjoy it? What did you learn about yourself while transitioning?
Have you ever felt self-conscious because your hair was thinning?
Have you had to cover it up with scarves and hats to hide thin spots or worried that it was excessively breaking?
Don’t fret because you’re not alone.
Women (and men) of all hair textures and ethnicities experience hair thinning at some point or another.
In fact statistics show that more than 21 million women in the USA alone experience hair thinning at some point.
How can you prevent or reduce thinning hair?
Here are some steps to take:
1. Ditch tight weaves and tight braids. Many women make the mistake of sacrificing their real hair’s health for the fun of wearing a glamorous looking weave or thin braids.
The truth of the matter is that many women fail to keep an eye on how tight their extensions are and as a result they experience traction alopecia (a severe form of hair breakage) because the hair has been pulled too tightly.
If you want a headful of luscious natural hair, avoid getting your hair styled too tightly and tell your hair stylist to be cautious with your hair.
Always remember that your hair is fragile and should be handled with care.
2. Don’t comb excessively. There’s an ancient Greek adage that says ‘nothing in excess.’ That definitely rings true when it comes to your hair.
Combing or brushing your hair excessively or harshly causes it to break, tear and snap. Be careful with how often you comb your hair and try to finger comb instead of always combing it with a brush or comb.
3. Be health conscious. Believe it or not, your diet plays a crucial role in your hair’s condition. If your health isn’t in check, it will often reflect in your hair’s condition.
Firstly, if you experience persistent hair thinning, go to the doctor and get checked out. It could for instance be a sign of an under active thyroid.
If however, you’re experiencing thinning hair despite the fact that you have no medical problems, you might want to pay closer attention to your diet by upping your vegetable, fruit and water intake.
Also, if you haven’t been working out, get moving! Aim to exercise for at least 30 minutes a day and don’t forget that doing things like walking up a flight of stairs, jogging in your living room and dancing all add up.
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