A common problem that many kinky and tightly coiled naturals face is single strand knotting, Single strand knots occur when individual kinky, coiled strands wrap around themselves or connect and entwine with other strands. Such knotting often increase when textured hair is allowed to shrink back tightly to the scalp after cleansing and is worn in this shrunken state. Wash and gos, braid outs and twist outs are common triggers for single strand knotting, especially in longer natural hair.
The massive and annoying tangling and breakage that results from single strand knotting can work against length retention in natural hair quite dramatically
When wearing my hair out – I normally snip about 3 knots a week – that’s a lot of hair!
Keeping strands moisturized and protein balanced and oiled does help!
Reducing styling manipulation by wearing buns helps protect against knotting.
Stretching with a blow dryer helps greatly! but to keep the hair from drying out stretching the hair with elastic bands (ponytail holders) along the length of the hair to keep it stretched. Banding can be done on wet or dry hair: however wet or damp hair will lengthen more easily. The technique is to separate hair into eight to ten sections. Dampen and detangle one section of hair at a time and place a band at the start, middle and end, allow to dry. Alternatively a hooded dryer may be used.
The result will be stretched out, lengthier natural tresses!
Breakage from moisture deficiency occurs when the hair is not receiving enough hydration on a daily or weekly basis. The hair’s moisture can be affected by heat styling or chemical processes.
Some examples are :
Using a blow dryer
Using a blow dryer on your hair is not a good idea because it pulls out moisture and causes the hair to become dry and break. Instead set the hair on rollers and use a hooded dryer. If you insist on blow drying I would recommend that you use a very good heat protector and use a radial brush to gently blow dry each section of hair.
Using a Marcel Flat Irons
Using a Marcel flat irons is damaging to the hair because the tools heated in the oven have uncontrolled heat. You never really know what the temperature is on the tools and the extreme heat will cause damage. Instead use ceramic irons where the heat can be controlled.
Using pressing comb
Just like a using a Marcel flat irons, using tools such as a pressing comb that is heated on the stove top of the oven is damaging. The heat is uncontrolled and this calls for a high change of heat damage to your hair. Instead use ceramic irons where the heat can be controlled.
Water and Protein moisturizers
The cause could simply be a lack of not hydrating the hair enough from within (water intake) and not enough moisturization deep conditioning/daily water based moisturizers.
Protein moisturizers are good as they strengthen the hair by supporting the cuticle by filling up broken spaces along the hair line and adding structure to the entire length of the hair strand.
The key to long and healthy hair and preventing dryness is moisturizing. There are many good moisturizers now on the market. Select one moisture based conditioner for weekly use. Some conditioners contain various types of lightweight protein that may respond differently to different types of textured hair. A little trial and error will be required to determine the conditioning products that best suit your hair’s needs.
A moisturizer is best used after your hair is shampooed and conditioned, or every one to three days or as needed for hydration.
Choose your moisturizer and saturate each section from root to tip, you may even add a cream moisturizer should you wish, a selection is also listed. The cream moisturizer is useful the day after wash day when you emerge from sleep with crispy hair that was washed the night before! It doesn’t matter what order you choose water moisturizer or cream; but to finish things off you must seal the hair with oil. Some people prefer coconut oil, olive oil, I like grape seed oil. Many people get confused as to what oil does – this mainly coats the hair and keeps the moisture in after the hair has been moisturized, which is important.
After your hair has been conditioned and oiled feel free to style! I normally end up doing twists and the next day; wear my hair in an up do like an afro puff. One word about twists is to make sure that when you do them you unravel bottom up as opposed from top down. That way you reduce knotting the ends. The ends very quickly form knots especially if you have coily hair!.
The best water based moisturizers do not contain mineral oil, rather they contain a mixture of water, humectants and natural oils or butters.
After the initial two years of growing natural hair – you will be amazed if your not already how hair growth can slow down. This of course is due to several factors, mismanagement by continual blow drying, weaves that didn’t work but itched all day! age, menopausal, diet as well has how you handle your hair whether its out all day to everyday, protection styling or low manipulation – which is good. Either way your’ll be glad to get some help to push those follicles out!
Here it is:
Be sure to wash hair once a week with a good quality moisturizing shampoo/conditioner; low sulfate preferable.
Apply a deep moisturizer after every wash or use olive oil (use steamer) for at least 20 minutes.
Be sure to trim once a year – once is sufficient for slow growing hair..
Use a Protein conditioner every 4 months or as needed.
Seal hair with Olive oil or jojoba every day after you apply moisturizer
Take vitamin D , Omega oil and Biotin to rapidly improve growth
Hair grows quickly from a shaved head to a small afro – mine did – so did yours I gather! It went from afro to afro puff then from the ears to the neck and from ears to the shoulder. Arriving at shoulder length is not just one of the fastest growth points but it is also the heaviest breaking point!
While waiting for your hair to reach shoulder length wearing puffs, twists and braids can be helpful in maintaining and supporting the growth of your hair.
Once it reaches shoulder length special care should be taken as you look over your routine and modify any changes that need to be made. Such changes should involve taking special care of your hair ends; hair can be entwined in collars, coat and your shoulder bag! Those ends are really fragile. To prevent this use a protective style that enables you to pin up your hair into a bun, or put them in a baggie covered by hat or scarf or a hair clip with the ends covered or a phony afro puff etc. There are so many protective styles to choose from – just keep those ends covered..
Fortify the ends at night with moisturiser and a heavy cream or spray with a homemade moisturiser using aloe vera juice, mineral water and castor oil. Cover with your usual silk scarf.
Yeh that’s right! I love crochet braids – so will you!
Here are my reasons why:-
First of all buy your Kanekalon KK jumbo this is an easy to braid synthetic hair –which is the best hair ever – it really feels good and behaves like real hair that is blown out!
The hair itself is very cheap and very economical. Best of all – you can do it yourself.
You cornrow your own hair then start crocheting. Using a crochet hook, pick out a few strands of kanekalon hair, thread it through a space on your scalp through a section of the cornrow and knot twice – there, your done – move on to the next section!. (You will need a crochet hook, look for examples on utube but you can see my utube pics here The whole process should take you about 2 – 3 hours! After which you’re free to trim, cut and style or straighten the hair out even more should you please..
If you choose to go to a salon – like I did the second time around, be careful because they tend to cornrow in too many rows – and you could end up with extremely thick hair! In the end I had to get a pair of hair thinning scissors to reduce the bulk! Just do it yourself at home it’s far less stressful, or enlist a friend to help! Anyway when it’s done, cut it to your desired length. Results are beautiful bouncing synthetic tresses, that can be straightened with an hairdryer or curled or just left to hang – whatever you choose it will look very natural! Crochet braids are totally protective, you’ve cornrowed your own hair yourself so it’s not tight! Believe me that’s a bonus! You’ve had minimal outlay so you’re not out-of-pocket especially if you’re a student or on a low-budget!
Some people may prefer to leave some hair out – this is your choice. It makes for no detection at all. My hair hates being left out – it responds by breaking off – it loves company! It’s no problem to wash this hair and don’t forget to moisturize as usual!
When removing the braids which is very easy, don’t forget to comb out gently each section of hair and do a thorough detangling with your fingers, then comb and wash very gently, being careful to not tangle the hair as you massage your scalp. This hair usually keeps for a very long time and whilst there is some shedding it’s nothing major. Six weeks is usually the norm but you can go for longer if you please.
Results: longer hair in a very short space of time! Happy growing! What’s your favorite protective style – and why?
Hair management is imperative so to succeed in gaining length. Strict rules will have to be adhered to – here is my definitive list.
Using a blow dryer
Like me your obsession with the hair dryer has got to stop!
The recommendations are once a month or once every 10 days only. It is also less damaging to do the stretch and hold method, try turning the heat down too! Continued blow drying pulls moisture from the hair, it becomes dry and breaks and if you insist on using the comb attachment – you will actually pull out sections of your hair – you won’t see it at first – it’s gradual and shows up later so stop – today! . Obviously it’s better if no blow drying is used and the hair left to air dry which will result in very healthy strong hair.
Trimming too often
It’s good to trim – but not every few days! It’s OK to trim once every three months. Insisting on trimming every three weeks – you will negate your own growth. As hair only grows 6 inch a year for most people – you will be removing your own length!
Over manipulating your hair
Believe it or not continued combing of our delicate tresses can break the hair ever so gently. Combing and brushing must be kept to a minimum. Instead comb the hair out with your fingers gently, then style. Which can be done – easily – try it!
No protective styling
I know its great being natural and you just want to touch and play with your hair. I know – I’m guilty of that too. But wait – our hair especially loves to be left alone, and that means no combing, no brushing, and no gelling. For most people twists and braids will give you some sort of hair retention, this will allow your hair to grow without being manipulated. A lot of length is achieved this way for most people especially when the hair is braided.
You ignore breakage
If you comb your hair often and notice little bits of hair all over the floor – but you ignore it!. This could be the reason why – you are not gaining length. The management of your hair needs to be looked at from combing to moisturizing. It all adds up – whilst you’re not able to stop all breakage a continual falling of little hairs denotes something is wrong. Cease all heat styling and dyeing and up the moisture level.
No co washing
Shampoo is so very harsh with the sulphates. Try co-washing your hair which means using a very good conditioner. This will allow the hair to be clean but remain soft and moisturized. Black hair especially the 4b/c is very dry and the scalp can get very dry, itchy and irritated. I find co –washing is extremely helpful as it does not dry out the scalp and hair.
Ladies – what measures have you taken to retain your length?
Your Step-byStep Guide For Growing Long, Healthy Hair
Your Step-byStep Guide For Growing Long, Healthy Hair: