Black Hair Care Basics

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More Black Hair Care Advice

How do you care for a weave?

Shorter recommends visiting your stylist every two to three weeks to make sure your weave stays as tight as possible. A loose weave can pull on your hair. She recommends that you make sure to cleanse your scalp as thoroughly as possible to prevent buildup and flaking. When should you take out your weave and put in a new one? Between 1.5 and 3 months. And after two consecutive "weavings," you should probably let your hair rest for a few weeks before putting in a new one.

What are some myths about African-American hair that you would like to dispel?

Myth #1: "That black hair can't grow long," says Branch. It grows at the same rate as other hair types -- half an inch per month. However, the hair is extra dry and fragile, which makes it prone to breakage. In fact, it can break at the same rate that it's growing. The hair can grow long if you moisturize it all the time and nourish the hair with the right products.

Myth #2: "Some people think you can over-condition your hair, but that's a lie," says Shorter. If you're using a conditioner for "damaged, dried" hair, it will have a lot of protein. However, too much protein makes your hair hard, especially if you're sleeping with the product in it. The opposite then happens: the hair hardens and breaks. Luckily there is no such thing as too much moisturizing and moisture makes the hair soft and pliable.

What are some products that every African-American woman should have?

For Branch, it's all about one word: Moisturize! She recommends four essential types of products:
1. A moisturizing shampoo, like Ojon's Ultra Hydrating Shampoo, $18
2. A moisturizing deep-conditioning treatment, like Ojon's Restorative Hair Treatment, $21
3. A moisturizing styling product, like Tresemmes Anti-Frizz Secret Smoothing Cream, $4.75
4. A moisturizing hair dress to replenish hair daily, like Biosilk's Silk Therapy Serum, $12.99

Shorter is a big fan of Tresemme's line of curl products, especially the Flawless Curls Definition Jelly ($4.35) and the Flawless Curls Shampoo ($5).

Originally published on LHJ.com, August 2009.

 

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