Washing, Moisturizing, and Sealing
Contrary to popular belief and practice, you still must wash, moisturize, and seal your hair underneath. Build up from hair products, dirt, and sweat will begin to collect between your braids, wefts, and net (if you wear one).
Grab a bottle with a pointed applicator tip, fill it with water and a few squirts of your favorite shampoo, and then apply and lather it between your braids, wefts, and on your scalp. To make this process easier, section off your hair into four parts first.
After it is lathered, pat it clean with a wet or damp towel, or simply rinse. Make sure to blow dry your hair and scalp thoroughly after washing. Use the applicator bottle method to apply oils to your scalp and roots as well.
Post-Installation Hair Care
When taking your weave out, make sure to cut on the thread and not your braids. Sometimes matting, build up, and/or new growth can blur the lines between hair and thread, so using a mirror in a well lit room (like your bathroom) will help tremendously.
Dip your fingers in oil that is not too thick, but has a lot of slip. This will help you get through any knots or tangles you run into while unraveling your braids. Wash, seal, and moisturize your hair as usual.
Depending on how long you had your weave in, you may need to do a deep condition and hot oil treatment to get your hair properly moisturized and ready for your regular styling.
A wash and go will be your best friend for the next week since you need to let your hair breathe before jumping into another style–especially a long term protective style.
Before You Get Another Weave
Before you get another weave, write down the changes in your hair health. If you experienced growth, minimal shedding, and was able to keep your hair moisturized, your installation was a success! However, thinning, dryness, and breakage are signs that something went wrong.
Make a mental list of all the pros and cons so you know what to do better next time. This will ultimately determine if weaves are right for you as a protective style.