The hair tips, advice and recommendations given on this blog are given based on the experiences of the authors. These tips may not work for everyone and every hair type and it is important to acknowledge this since we are neither hair specialists nor trichologists.

Also many pictures on this blog belong to the authors but there are others that we do not have ownership for and thus we do not claim ownership of the ones that do not belong to us.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Protective Styling


So here you are with your hair: short, long and in between. And maybe it is even a mix of relaxed and natural hair. Or maybe it is relaxed hair. There are many things you can do to your hair to keep it healthy. Protective styling is one of those things. 

The objective of protective styling is to limit the frequency with which you manipulate your hair. By manipulating our hair I am referring to when we pull, stretch, tug, roll etc our hair and when our hair is subject to frequent snagging from our clothes or jewelry. The more we manipulate our hair the more likely we are to damage our hair and loose the hair length and hair health we have built up over time. So less manipulation is better for hair health and growth.


Kinky twists

Bantu Knots

How much manipulation is too much manipulation? That is a tough question because I cannot say the ideal is to manipulate once a week or twice a week. I have talked to a lot of women who have healthy hair and I noticed that they manipulate on average weekly or every two weeks. So they wash, condition and style weekly or every two weeks. This is not a rule. The principle is to reduce how often you subject your hair to "stresses" and "tension". Intro Protective Styling. When protective styling is used, the wearer is then restircted from excessive "touching" of the hair. And that is the idea! No touching. Not touching. No touching for a period of time so your hair can rest.


Corn rows with braids in front

Twist and pinned twists

Corn rows with bantu knots on the ends

In my opinion, the common protective technique natural haired women use is twists. However, there are many other techniques like: braids, corn rows, African threading, flat twists, coils, bantu knots, bunning etc. You also have weaves, yarn braids, kinky braids and other styles done with extensions. And of course you can also use a wig. I usually recommend that you keep in extensions for four to six weeks maximum. I heard the loud laughter! It is my recommendation ;D

Braids with extensions

A wig
And people get creative with these protective techniques and that's where "styling" meets "protective". I have mixed corn rows and twists, corn rows and African threading, twists and bantu knots to get some interesting styles. The point is: be creative. Yes, you want to keep your hair healthy but it doesn't mean it should be boring all the time!

Corn rows and African threading

So what is your favourite protective technique and how do you style your hair with it?

Keep it natural!



natureal rox said...

I have just began a year of protective styling, I'm brading for the year as protective styling. However, I make sure I wash my braids (dry shampoo which you can make yourself) and hydrate before bed. Braids only stay in for 6 weeks.

Ekiuwa said...

I like to do what i call basket twists. basically I twist my hair and pu them in bantu knots. when I'm all done I undo the bantu knot (with the twist still intact) and cross the twist to the opposite side of my head to stretch it out. I do this for all the twists and some how it comes out in a basket pattern. Make sure to hold the twists down with bobby pins. When i take down the twists I get and amazing stretched out twist out to flaunt and work with to achieve other styles and other protective styling. I find stretched hair easier to work with. *SIGH* Thank you for your time lol x

Omozo said...

@natureal: A whole year! Wow! I am not sure I can keep it up for that long. Good luck and please keep us posted on how it is going.

@Eki: Your basket twists sound cool. Wondering if you use small twists or any size. Would like to try it one day. Do you have pictures you can share please? Thanks for sharing this technique.