Your hairstyle is an extension of who you are in terms of personality and character. After all, hairstyles can be a means of individual expression. Although there are many ways to be creative when it comes to your hair, it’s important to do so using healthy methods. Some hairstyles are aesthetically appealing though can leave permanent damage to the scalp and hair quality.
Here are ways to style your hair in a healthy way.
Creating waves in hair is a popular go-to hairstyle among black men. This style is achieved by moisturising the hair, combing the hair in a pattern and using a scarf to tie the hair to lock in moisture. This is a healthy way of styling as it doesn’t require much hair manipulation.
Achieving this style, however, requires extensive research about waves hair as it’s a process that needs to be carefully implemented for the best possible outcome. One has to be familiar with the process of prepping the hair, training the hair to follow the particular design, as well as regular and proper maintenance. It may take several tries to execute the perfect 360-degree wave pattern; however, practice makes for a healthy hairstyle.
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2. Regular Washing
Neglecting to wash and your hair regularly can lead to a build-up of oils, dandruff and knots. This build-up stunts growth, and the appearance of your hair eventually becomes dull and heavy. Any hairstyle that you might attempt might not be in the best state. Before you decide to style your hair, you must apply shampoo and conditioner for a deep wash and rinse. Once the hair is dry, you can then go on and groom your hair without having to worry about any build-up or residue destroying your exquisite hairstyle.
3. Regular Misting
You might not be able to do a daily, thorough wash, depending on your hairstyle and schedule. For example, if you are wearing cornrows or other types of braided hairstyles, it is impossible to undo the style daily for a wash, and get the cornrows immediately plaited in again. In this scenario, although daily washing of hair might not be an option, you must mist your hair regularly.
Misting means using a spray bottle to apply water in your hair to avoid brittle hair texture that may lead to breakage. Extreme temperatures during the summer or winter tend to dry up your hair which is why it’s important to include misting into your daily hair routine. Another way of misting is to stand in a hot shower and let the steam soak into your hair and scalp.
4. Regular Moisturising
Your scalp can get dry if you don’t apply moisturising oils regularly. You can find hair products that work well for you such as coconut oil, sheer butter, aloe Vera or CBD hair oil. Products such as these are believed to have natural health benefits for your hair, such as promoting hair growth and strength. You must allocate ample time in your schedule to apply quality moisturising products onto your scalp and gently massage into your hair before styling.
5. Avoid Heat
Pin straight hair is a popular style that can is versatile and dramatic. Some of the top methods of straightening hair include using a hot comb, a presser, and a hairdryer. Although straightening your hair creates a shiny and glossy look, constantly applying heat to your hair can facilitate hair breakage and scalp sensitivity. Try to style your hair in ways that don’t always require the use of heat. When you do need to apply heat, make sure that the gadget you use isn’t set to the highest temperature as this can burn some of your hair strands.
6. Loose Tying
Hairstyles that require tugging and tight methods of tying can be harmful. Your scalp is sensitive and if it is tugged on for periods, you might develop scalp rash and pimples. For example, if you’re styling your hair in a high-bun, make sure that you loosely gather your hair strands into an effortless bun held together by a stretched band. If you experience pain after tying your hair, you might have to loosen the grip of the band to avoid scalp damage.
7. Minimal Style Switches
Healthy hairstyles are a result of minimal handling of the hair. Regularly switching hairstyles can facilitate hair breakage and scalp damage as a result of over-handling. For example, if you have waves in your hair one day, then the next day you decide to get braid extensions then removed these the following day to return to waves, you may be over-handling your hair. Try remaining with a particular type of style for as long as the style appears and feels easy and comfortable.
8. Quality Hair Accessories
Styling hair accessories include elastics, crocodile pins and hair buttons. Not all accessories work well with the quality of your hair. For example, thinned-out hair might not respond well to elastics as these can cut into the hair strands resulting in breakage. You’ll have to try out different styling accessories and monitor which types can style your hair without breakage.
9. Avoid Chemicals
Adding chemicals into your hair such as chemical-based styling gels and hair dyes, can risk your scalp and hair health. There have been instances where people have had their scalps burnt by various chemicals, or their hair caught flames and caused major injuries. Although you may not experience any damages when you initially style your hair, the negative effects may appear in the form of brittleness and hair loss.
10. Wrap Hair When Sleeping
If you have a hairstyle that you don’t take down when going to bed, you should wrap your hair. Wrapping your hair avoids your pillow soaking in any moisture from your hair. You can use any satin or silk cloth as these materials don’t soak in moisture. Alternatively, you can sleep on a satin or silk pillowcase as this serves the same purpose as the head-wrap.
11. Careful Undoing Of Hairstyles
If you wish to take down the current hairstyle to create a different one, you have to carefully un-do the hair in a way that facilitates health for the next hair-do. For example, if you have locs and wish to undo these for a high-bun, you must take your time to undo the locs.
Rushing the process can lead to unhealthy practices such as using a pair of scissors to untangle knots, and the use of sharp objects to comb off knotted ends. The result of such practices can lead to poor quality hair for the next style as a result of breakage, split ends, and damaged strands of hair.
Make sure to moisturise your hair with water before taking down tight hairstyles to avoid damaging dry hair. Once the hair is moisturised, use your fingers as much as possible to undo the style, as opposed to sharp objects and scissors. Once the hair is undone and in quality condition, you’re then ready to prepare for your next hairstyle.
12. Let It Breathe
Regularly leaving your hair in its natural state without manipulating it into any style is important. This facilitates hair repair and growth. Make sure to encourage this process by firstly cleaning the hair and leaving out any hair additions such as clips and hair products.
13. Hair Treats
You can treat your hair by visiting a hair spa that provides products that you don’t normally add into your daily routine. These products combined with the hair expertise of the salon’s hair stylists and artists, make for healthy styling which can have lasting hair benefits. You can also opt for scalp treatments that remove dirt thoroughly, a head massage, or hair repair treatments if you notice any breakage.
Your hair communicates with you through texture and appearance. You can only determine the styles that work well and those that don’t by getting creative. One style may leave your edges vulnerable while another facilitates growth. Another style may cause breakage while a different one encourages thickness. Once you determine the specific hairstyles and their respective outcomes, you can continue with those that keep your hair healthy and in perfect condition.
15. Be Unique
Keep in mind that hair textures differ and yours is unique. A particular style that may be healthy for one may not necessarily work for you and vice-versa. Trying to make a trendy style work for you when it only damages your hair can result in permanent hair and scalp injury. Be creative and confident in the hairstyles that bring out your best features.
The health of your hair and scalp depends on how you manage to style and nurture your hair. Different methods of styling that may ensure hair health include regular washing, misting, moisturising, avoiding heat, loose tying, minimal switching of styles, quality hair accessories, avoiding chemicals, wrapping the style when sleeping, careful un-doing of hair, letting the hair breathe, hair treatment, trying different styles and uniquely styling your hair.
Make sure to be patient with your hair when styling, and to continuously monitor the effects of any style that try out.