Happy New Year! Oh braids, we love to get them. Braiding can be a great protective style! Wearing braids for the right amount of time (less than 6 weeks) is excellent for promoting hair growth. However, the take down process can be a bit daunting and if the process is rushed your hair will end up damaged. You need to remove braids carefully and slowly to minimize breakage and shedding.
Here are 7 Tips that will ensure you don’t suffer hair loss or damage.
- Put Your Hair into Sections – The first and most important part of taking down any braidstyle is to put your hair into sections. Working in sections helps to make the task less overwhelming. Split your hair into 4 to 8 sections, and work one section at a time. Sectioning the hair will help you maneuver around your head and ease the process. Before you begin, take a spray bottle and fill with water and spray your roots and hair to reduce dryness and add moisture.
- Unravel and Detangle Rather Than Comb – Once the braids are all removed, it’s time to detangle. Well, don’t reach for a comb just yet! I know your gut instinct is to take a comb and work through all the knots, tangles, and shed hair, but chances are you’ll end up ripping out perfectly good and healthy hair in an effort to get out all the kinks. Finger detangling is best! Coat each section of hair with HairYum Pink Sugar Protein Conditioner and start detangling your hair with your fingers, beginning at the bottom and going toward the roots, working one part at a time. Do it gently so that you’re not pulling out excess hair, only the loose shed hair. If your braids were properly installed, it is much gentler to unravel your hair. DO NOT WASH your hair until all your hair is detangled. If you wash your hair without properly detangling, your hair will knot up and fall out in chunks (We speak from experience…have patience and detangle your hair well).
- Use Hair Oil – Braids take-down can be easier when you use oil. Using oil will provide just enough lubrication to unravel the braids without clogging up your hair. Start by adding moisture to the hair then add enough oil to coat the hair. You can use HairYum Vegan Organic Hair Oil to regain instant softness and vitality of your hair. Avoid applying too much oil to prevent the hair from becoming clogged and unmanageable. There should be enough oil and water to make the hair easier to manipulate but not so much that it feels heavy or greasy.
- Shampoo and Condition the Hair – After your hair is detangled and section, now it is time to wash and detox your scalp. Massage your scalp and work in the shampoo. Remember, your scalp has been working overtime under the braids, so you have to clarify and wash your hair and scalp well. Shampooing and conditioning the hair is the best way to start fresh. To clarify your scalp, wash it with HairYum Lavender Mango Refreshing Shampoo to give your hair a super clean and yummy feeling. Deep conditioning is absolutely essential after taking down braids. After clarifying your scalp, use a deep conditioner to replenish and restore your hair. Use HairYum Blueberry Deep Conditioner to strengthen and replenish hair. Leave the conditioner in for 5 -10 minutes and rinse hair well.
- Trimming the Hair – Trimming is an essential part of healthy natural hair. Don’t hesitate to trim as needed. If you didn’t do so before installing your braids, your hair is most likely going to be ready for a trim immediately after keeping it hidden for several weeks. You can head to a professional if you’re not confident in your scissor skills. Don’t keep split ends lingering around for the sake of length, healthy hair needs to be trimmed regularly.
- Let Your Hair Chill – This means let your hair rest. Do not reinstall braids for a couple of weeks, and don’t reinstall braids on the same day you take down your braids. Our hair needs access to water and air, and needs to regroup after being tucked under braids. Wear your hair proudly in its natural state for at least two to four weeks before reinstalling a protective style.
- Get an Extra Set of Hands – If you have really small braids or you’re just tired and overwhelmed, get an extra set of hands and eyes to help you speed up the process. Just make sure they are not pulling your hair when they help take down the braids or rushing to comb your hair before you put conditioner on your hair and detangle.
P.S Our HairYum Edge Control was featured in The Braid Up by Cosmopolitan as a great styling product used for Braids. Click HERE to watch the video. Share with us your braid take down tips in the comments for a chance to win a FREE jar of our yummy edge control.