Maintaining natural 4C hair is not a walk in the park. You have to deal with tough coils and tangled ends. A simple wash and comb session can lead to massive hair loss which in turn impacts the length of your hair.
We all want bouncy, luscious and healthy hair. Most importantly, every girl wants their hair to grow and stay long.
4C hair is considered the most fragile among all hair types. It is biologically and structurally different from other hair types and therefore prone to frequent breakage.
For instance, 4C hair forms knots due to the intertwining of hair fibers. This makes it difficult to comb through, as the hairs become entangled, especially when dry.
When wet, this hair type is easier to comb but much more brittle.
While a lot of people assume that 4C hair does grow fast like other hair types, the truth is- it actually grows, but breaks more often. 4c hair length retention, therefore, takes careful handling and dedication.
In this article, we discuss tips that will help you maintain your natural hair’s length, but first, let’s explore some of the common reasons why your hair is breaking in the first place;
Reasons Why Your Hair is Breaking?
All hair types are affected by environmental factors such as excessive sunlight, which can dry up the scalp and hair or excessive humidity. which leads to knots and coils.
When the hair is exposed to any extreme weather conditions in its natural state, it is likely to break as it weakens with increased exposure.
Structurally, 4c hair does not allow even distribution of moisture. Its spiral shape makes it difficult for sebum produced by sebaceous glands to travel up to the tips.
It, therefore, remains dry unless moisturized frequently, In its dry state, the hair breaks easily at the mere touch of a comb.
Are you a fun of blow dry and flat irons, those nice curls and the shiny look come at a cost. Using heat generating equipment to style your hair can easily cause heat damage which in turn leads to breakage and split ends.
Often, when you buy any hair care products, the ultimate goal is to improve your hair’s texture, length and overall health, Some products can, however, end up damaging rather than protecting your hair.
If they dispose too much oil on your scalp, they may end up clogging your pores thus inhibiting growth. Other products may be too harsh on the hair causing damage and subsequent breakage.
4c Hair Length Retention Tips
Wash and Condition at the Right Intervals
It can be tempting to go for long without washing your 4c hair. This is probably because, it is not prone to lice and other parasites, unlike other moist and oily hair types.
Unfortunately, leaving your hair unwashed for long leads to a build-up of dirt and oil. Remember, your hair already suffers from uneven distribution of sebum due to its coiled shape.
The sebum buildup may, therefore, hinder growth and lead to stagnation in the long run. Wash your hair at least twice a month using the right shampoo.
In addition, condition your hair using both water-based and oil-based conditioners to prevent dryness after washing.
Have you ever wondered where your hair comes from? It comes from your body. Each hair strand grows from a root, like a plant. The roots are made up of protein cells. They need blood from scalp vessels to grow.
The growth process is also aided by oil from glands on the scalp. You, therefore, need to eat right for these elements to work properly. You need enough protein, blood and oil for your hair to grow at a good rate.
Keratin, which is the most basic structural material that makes up your hair comes from protein-rich foods such as red meat, pork, beans and eggs.
The amount of keratin in your body determines your hair’s texture and general look. Ensure you eat a healthy balanced diet, rich in protein to achieve reasonable hair growth.
Every woman has an inherent need to try out different hairstyles. This is why there are so many hairstyles and hair products in the market.
Unfortunately, excessive manipulation of 4c hair amounts to unnecessary tagging and pulling, When weaving, heating or applying gels on your hair, you end up applying excessive pressure, which causes weak points and eventual breakage.
Therefore, try to fight the urge to manipulate your hair every time you spot a new hair trend. Maintain a hair styling calendar and try to rock hairstyles which last longer than a week or two.
This will give your hair enough time to grow while protecting it from the pulling and tagging.
Maybe you’re at a phase where you just want to bring your inner strength out by rocking your natural kinky hair. Bantu knots and curls or big afros can be very sexy and outstanding when styled properly, but there is a price to pay.
Rocking your natural hair for too long means exposing it to environmental factors which cause dryness or intertwining of hair fibers. This is why you need to invest in protective styling.
Braiding or weaving your hair keeps it away from the sun’s heat or excessive moisture during the cold season. if you’re keen, you’ll notice that your hair grows faster when you braid or weave it.
It also ends up with a nice strong texture because it experiences minimal manipulation and exposure to harsh products or weather conditions.
It is therefore advisable to try out various protective styles every now and then. With so many trends to choose from, you’ll definitely be spoilt for choice.
Invest in the right hair care products
A good hair length is an investment. Do not expect your hair to just grow and stay long because you have good genes. Your hair is like your body, if you feed it the right products, it will respond by growing and staying strong.
Therefore, research products before making a purchase, Ensure you understand your hair and how it responds to different chemicals and products, While olive oil may work for your sister, it may not necessarily work wonders on your hair.
If you have trouble understanding what your hair needs, talk to your hair stylist before buying anything. They have a lot of experience with different hair types and hair products and are likely to know what will work for you.
Conclusively, 4c hair length retention may not be easy, but it is definitely achievable. You do not have to spend a lot of money since most of the supplements you need can be found in your kitchen and the local market.
If you do not have money to spend on expensive hair care products, simply look for natural alternatives such as fruits and spices and use them to treat or condition your hair. Foods such as avocados, yogurt, vinegar, honey and eggs are commonly used to supplement manufactured hair products.
All you need to do is evaluate your hair’s current condition, recurring problems (breakage, split ends or stagnation) and what it needs to stay healthy. If it seems all too confusing, simply consult an expert.