Black History Month: The Beauty in Black Hair
Black people’s hair is magical. The kinks and coils that intertwine on our heads are a beautiful reminder of our history of resilience. Even better is how creative black women have been able to be with their hair. Africans have been using their hair as a representation of culture and fashion statement for centuries. From braids to weaves, to wigs and natural hair, black women have proved how versatile black hair can be. Although black hair can require a lot of patience and care, it’s so important to show our hair the love it deserves.
Afro-textured hair has had a turbulent past. Natural hair has struggled to find a place in both greater society and within the black community. Weaves, wigs, and relaxers have been helping black women maintain their hair and create beautiful looks for decades, but unfortunately also serve to conceal our natural hair pattern. We want to use these options because we like the way they make us look and feel, not because we feel like we have to!
Thanks to the natural hair movement that ramped up around 2009-2010, black women have been encouraged to embrace their natural hair and use the proper products and techniques to take care of it. What makes black hair unique is the various curl patterns. Afro-textured hair can be curly, kinky, coily, or a combination of different patterns. This makes for a full and abundant look that you can manipulate to create so many different styles!
No matter if you wear your hair in its natural state, wear wigs or weaves, or relax your hair, it’s important to take care of it.
Here are some must-have products for black hair care:
- Reliable shampoo and conditioner
- Leave-in conditioner
- Hair oil
- Good comb
- Accessories, such as head wraps
- Bonnets for when you’re sleeping
There are so many other products that black women use to take care of their hair, but these you almost cannot do without! There are also some key steps to take to maintain black hair. Below, you’ll find some tips on what to do to maintain healthy hair. Some of these tips are not unique to black women; they’re great for anyone who wants to take care of their hair!
Moisturize, Moisturize, Moisturize!
Black hair tends to be slightly dry, which causes it to be more prone to breakage. This is because the kinky curl pattern of the hair makes it difficult for the natural oils created in our scalps to distribute to the ends of our hair.
To minimize this, we have to apply additional moisture to our hair externally. Beyond having a good shampoo and conditioner, you should have a dependable leave-in conditioner and a go-to hair oil as well.
Some great hair oils to use are coconut oil, jojoba oil, and Jamaican black castor oil.
Deep conditioning is something everyone should do, regardless of the texture of your hair. Deep conditioning not only restores moisture to your hair, but it can also help with its elasticity and strengthen your strands.
You can buy a deep conditioner from a reputable hair brand, or you can make your own! Make sure to let it sit on your head for 15-30 minutes. It’s best to sit under a dryer so that the heat can help the deep conditioner penetrate your strands better, but if you don’t have a hood dryer, layering a plastic cap and one of our bonnets is a great alternative!
Protective styles are hairstyles that give you a break from manipulation and protect your ends from dry or nasty weather. Wigs and box braids and cornrows are all great protective styles that will protect your hair for days or weeks, and also allow you to switch up your look! Don’t forget to continue moisturizing your hair, even if it is in a protective style.
Protecting your hair doesn’t have to require manipulating your hair into a protective style. You can also protect it by wearing a headwrap. We offer a number of African-inspired headwraps that will protect your hair while still having you look stylish. They are versatile, and you can tie them in several different ways, depending on your mood. Many of them even match the dresses we offer!
Protect While Sleeping
So you’ve moisturized your hair, you’ve deep conditioned, and you’ve even found a protective style that you love, great! Now, you have to focus on keeping all of the moisture in your hair and maintaining your protective style. You don’t want to lay your moisturized hair on your pillow and wake up to find it dry and a mess!
The absolute best way to do this is to wear a bonnet on your head every night before you go to bed. We have a selection of bonnets that have lining to retain moisture as well as protect your hair from frizz while you sleep. They’re big enough to hold large amounts of hair and even long box braids.
Do you need to run a quick errand, but don’t have time to put on a wig? You’ll find the African print designs of our bonnet so beautiful that you can even wear them out to show off!
Black women, our hair is our crown and we have to treat it like such. Invest in your hair, and it will show you gratitude.