One of my favourite benefits of going natural was the renewal of the edges of my hair. Because of the constant pressure of braids, twists and weaves on already weakened, relaxed hair my edges were in a sad and sorry state when I first went natural. My hairline was not where it should have been and most of the hair around my edges was really thin. However, after a while of living life with my natural hair, I soon noticed them coming back in a significant way. My edges became (and still are) one of my favourite rewards for going natural.
Now, that’s not to imply it has always been easy to keep my edges healthy even with my natural hair routine. There have been times when I’ve had to change up my maintenance, and care of my hair, in order to keep my hairline healthy. It’s a work-in-progress, which is why I’ve curated a list below of 10 tips and tricks to keep your edges looking full and nourished:
1. Use Larger Sections For Your Braids
When doing braids and twists, do larger sections at your edges. As explained in one of my natural hair nightmares posts, bad things happen when you try to cheat the system by doing little braids on your edges.
Moisturise, moisturise and moisturise. The hair on your hairline is prone to breaking especially if dry, so use water-based moisturisers and sealants on them regularly.
3. Limit Protective Styles That Pulls on Your Hair
Limit the use of weaves and similar styles like crochet braids that can pull on the edges of your hair, especially when the cornrows are done in ways that pull your hair towards the centre. You can still do them of course, but to protect your hair it’s best to do them less often especially if you are noticing signs that your hair is suffering.
4.Take Regular Breaks
Take a break in between styles involving extensions or yarn. Do protective styles only using your natural hair for a while so that it gives your hair some time to recuperate.
5. Finger Detangling
Detangle your hair with your fingers instead of combs. Make sure you moisturise the hair before you start detangling and use a detangling gel like Kinky Curly’s Knot Today, if you are having a hard time undoing the knots.
6. Use Castor Oil and Olive Oil
Use a mix of Jamaican Black Castor Oil with olive oil and massage into your edges after spraying water on your hair. Do this in addition to your regular moisturising routine.
7. Take Vitamin D
Consider taking vitamin D3 supplements especially if you are able to find out if your vitamin D levels are lower than they should be.
8. Use Satin or Silk Pillowcase
Use a satin pillowcase to prevent your hair from friction caused by rubbing your hair on a cotton pillowcase.
9. Limit on Ponytails and Buns
Limit the frequency of hairstyle that put your hair up and back like ponytails, buns, etc whether its done on your loose natural hair, your locs, or your braids/twists. Have days where you keep your hair down. Personally, I know my hair does best when not under the pressure that many styles cause.
10. Limit on Headbands and Bonnets
If you, especially, have sensitive edges, limit the use of headbands or satin bonnets (just use the satin pillowcase instead), to prevent friction on your edges.
So what do you think? What are some tips that you use to keep your edges happy and healthy? Let me know what you think in the comments below.