Growing natural hair is one of the most exhilarating things you could ever do. Actually Most times, it’s a bittersweet moment that involves a beautiful awakening of your true beauty along with some pain while maintaining it. This pain is totally worth it once you start to see the growth of your natural curl pattern.
The pain comes from doing things that we need to do to maintain the best health like combing, twisting or braiding. This type of manipulation is not meant to be felt every single day! Your HAIR deserves to breathe and rest and not be tugged at all the time. That’s where protective styling comes in.
What are protective styles?
Protective styles refer to hairstyles that protect the ends of your hair, to decrease or prevent tangling, shedding and breakage. Protective hairstyles also have a good effect on the scalp, as wearing these hairstyles in long intervals will give it rest from the usual push and pull when combing and styling on a daily basis. On my journey, I chose not to do protective styling that often. Now I wish I would have done more protective styles as my hair grew out of the twa.
Protective styling or protective hairstyles?
Protective styling is about giving your natural hair more protection by leaving it alone for a while. By leaving alone I’m talking about the products you apply to it and of course, the hairstyles you choose. For example, during your daily styling, you should gently take your time to use a wide tooth comb to detangle your hair to avoid hair loss and breakage. Finger combing is also a good idea just make sure that your nails are trimmed and no jewelry is on.
Needless to say, the oils and lotions applied to your hair are also extremely important. Protect your hair by purchasing products made with mainly natural ingredients. You should always check out the ingredients for chemicals like parabens, in the products you choose. Such chemicals do more harm than good to your hair.
Most women go into protective style mode during the colder seasons like Fall or Spring. But it’s better to do this practice regardless of seasonal changes so your hair can remain strong and healthy all year round. Below are some amazing advantages of protective styling, or wearing protective hairstyles:
- They limit the stress and interference of environmental factors on your hair. The cold, the wind or even a scorching sun got nothing on you.
- Your hair will remain fully hydrated. Because protective styles bind or hold up your hair in one way or another, your hair would have a small chance of losing moisture.
- Your scalp gets the chance to breathe. Protective hairstyles should be done with minimal to no tension in order to keep your hair healthy.
- Protective hairstyles are quick and easy, saving you time when you’re on the go and in a hurry.
- Most protective styling choices can be done at your convenience.
- Protective styling promotes length retention because your ends are tucked away neatly and won’t shed or fall off.
Now on to the fun part: I’m going to give you a list of common protective hairstyles that are cheap, ready-to-wear, chic and easy on the strands as well. You can look over this list and make your choice depending on what you think will suit you or choose several that you want to try:
- Bantu Knots
- Faux bun or Afro bun
- Simple updo
- Crochet Braids
There are several options of hair when it comes to Wigs. Here I will list a few choices:
- Wearing a scarf or headwrap
- Cornrows With or without added clip-in hair extensions
- Faux Locs
Note that hairstyles like Ghana braids and million braids are also protective styles but please tell your stylist that you don’t need them to be too tight. The best option might be to go for the popular millions braids wig, if you really like it and would love to try it. After all, the possibilities are endless with protective styling. You could come up with your own styles, or you could get style inspiration online (I recommend Pinterest).
Never believe the lie that with natural hair, comes limited possibilities for styling. It’s actually the other way round. If you need help keeping up with your hairstyles and products used I recommend the Natural Hair Wash Day Planner.
I hope you enjoyed the post. Thanks for reading. Please subscribe.