One of the beautiful things about getting box-braids or twists is the low maintenance they require. However, this often leads to your hair’s neglect because many of us fail to wash, condition, and moisturize our hair as we usually would when our hair is out.
We opt to do these styles because they require little to no manipulation of our hair on a daily basis. This is great when trying to retain length, but in order to keep your hair and scalp healthy you have to put in work; your hair still needs care.
Whether your braids are 2 weeks old or a month old, when it comes to wash day, cleansing your scalp and washing your braids can be a challenge. For me, I weigh my options, do I want a clean scalp with frizzy braids, or a neglected scalp with braids that look neat?
When I moved away for college and had no one to do my hair for months at a time I would get my hair braided right before the start of school, and I would often make a conscious decision not to wash my hair because I wanted my braids to last as long as possible; for me that was 2 months, but at the end of that period of time, the buildup of oil and product at the base of my braids would reveal itself.
So how do you wash your hair, without creating unbearable frizz and ruining a good hairstyle? Follow these steps and you’ll wonder why you ever sacrificed your hairs’ health.
Depending on how much hair you have on your head you may want to work in sections. If you have lots of hair you may want to divide it into four parts to make the work a little easier. It will also help you break the habit of rubbing all your hair together and causing frizz. You want to work in sections so that when you’re washing your hair you’re massaging your scalp well and getting rid of all the buildup.
If you’ve invested in an applicator bottle* this would be the perfect time to use it! If you prefer using shampoos or heavier liquids to cleanse your scalp dilute them with water in your applicator bottle*.
Run water through your hair so that your hair is wet. Squeeze the product from your applicator bottle onto your scalp and use your fingers to gently rub the product on your scalp until it lathers. Once you’ve worked up a good lather at the base of your braids run the product down the length of your hair.
Because your ends are the most fragile part of your hair, you want to make sure that the shampoo doesn’t spend too much time on your ends and completely strip your hair of its moisture.
Repeat this process throughout the other sections and rinse thoroughly by allowing the water to run down the hair. Make an effort not to create any unnecessary frizz.