I love protective styling whether its Marley Twists, Senegalese Twist, Box Braids, Buns, Crochet Braids, Cornrows etc, I have done it all! Protective styling is awesome because it protects your precious ends from the harsh weather elements, combats shedding and breakage from over styling but, most importantly locks in moisture. However, many naturalista’s forget or do not bother to keep up with their moisture game while their hair is in a protective style.
This is a big NO NO and can lead to more serious damage to your hair. Because your ends are cover or tuck away (buns), moisture is not getting to that area. The ends are the oldest part of our hair and need to be constantly moisturized. That’s why it is important to prep your hair before you protective style. Make sure the night or week before you give a lot more TLC to your ends before styling. You will notice during your take down of your protective style that your ends are smooth and moisturized.
Also taking care of your scalp is very important as well especially if you are wearing single box braids, Marley twist and even crotchet braids. When I’m protective styling every three days I re-moisturize my scalp with shea butter, oils (olive, castor, coconut) water from my spray bottle mixed with Aloe Vera juice and Jamaican Mango & Lime No More Itch Gro Spray (the link is below).
Next I spend 5-10 mins giving my scalp a nice soothing massage with the pads of my fingers. This helps to cause circulation and blood flow to the scalp which leads to new growth. I also make sure that my scalp is receiving water each day by not covering it in the shower. This allows the stem and water from the shower to penetrate my hair. You do not have to stand directly under the shower and soak your hair but lightly wet parts of your hair that grows at a slower rate, I make sure that my edges, back and front of my hair are receiving water. You can also use your spray bottle every day instead as an alternative.
The goal is to make sure you are retaining moisture to your scalp which will result in hair growth!!
Also depending on you hair growth rate do not keep protective styles over 8 weeks, this can cause shedding, breakage, and a dirty scalp.