Beauty Sleep For Your Hair
by Cassidy Blackwell, Natural Selection Blog
Want to know the secret to great curls all day? It’s how you take care of them overnight.
Natural hair care is a 24-hour-a-day routine, but most people focus on the waking hours in which we are actively styling, prepping, conditioning and moisturizing. Once styled, your curls are pretty much free from any serious touching all day (unless you have Hand-in-Head syndrome, but that’s a whole other story).
All of your hard work from the day will be undone, though, if you don’t take the proper steps to protect your strands while you sleep. Once your locks hit the pillows and it’s dreamtime, you’re tossing and turning your curls into tangles and sucking the moisture straight out of them so that you wake up with a dry, frizzy, snarled mess. So much for beauty sleep.
Because natural hair is naturally dry and more fragile, you must take active steps to protect your hair overnight. With a proper bedtime routine you can:
Maintain a style longer
Keep your curls elongated
Here are some of my top—not to mention easy and quick—suggestions for making sure your strands are kept nice overnight:
· SLEEP ON SATIN: When you get out of the shower, you use a cotton towel to absorb all of the moisture from your skin to get you dry, right? Well this same logic applies to cotton pillowcases and your hair. As a fabric, cotton has a tendency to wick away moisture, so if you sleep on cotton pillowcases, that fabric will pull moisture straight out of your hair. Cotton can also have a rougher texture due to its weave pattern so it can pull on your delicate coils and leave them tangled. Rather than dry, knotty hair, opt to sleep on a satin pillowcase—or use a satin cap or scarf to protect your strands overnight. Satin is non-absorbent and allows your hair to glide over the surface, preventing tangles.
· SCRUNCH IT UP TO KEEP IT LOOSE: Nobody wants to wake up with an afro helmet or have to douse their hair with water every morning (especially in the cold winter months). For those that are wearing loose, natural hairstyles such as a wash’n’go or a twist/braidout, use a cloth scrunchie (yes, the same kind that was popular in the early ’90s) to keep hair elongated and protect your curl pattern overnight. Take large sections of hair and secure the scrunchie around the base, wrapping only ONCE around. Adjust the number of sections depending on your hair length and cut. In the morning, remove the scrunchies, and use a bit of moisturizer to fluff and go. If you’ve got short hair, play with the placement, and if you’ve got long hair, try using a cloth headband instead of a scrunchie. Here is a video of my bedtime routine:
· PIN IT TO WIN IT: For looser curl patterns or longer hair, take small sections and tuck hair under, pinning at the scalp. This will help to keep your hair volumized and protect your ends overnight.
· CONDITION WHILE YOU SLEEP: In really dry climates, I often like to sleep with deep conditioner on my strands. My hair is oftentimes so dry that this marathon conditioning session allows me to wake up to hydrated coils. The key here is to apply product to dry, not wet, hair.
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