There's truth to the statement: Hindsight is 20/20. Now that I have seriously taken the time to research and study the hair and scalp in order to continue to improving The Ronnie Shop product line, I realized how we collectively do certain things out of habit that hinder the progress of our journey to healthy hair.
I have compiled a few short cardinal rules with simple explanations to help them stick:
1. That Curling Iron Touch-Up: Never apply heat to hair that is not freshly shampooed and conditioned. We all do it, we are about to head out for work or an event and we pull out the curling iron to tame the frizz or give us a bit of curl and volume. The truth is, you are probably DAYS away from when your hair was shampooed, you have probably applied oils, and moisturizing products, in addition to your own sebum ( oil) production and sweat. You are slowly frying your hair which will lead to heat damage and breakage. In between wash days or salon visits, come up with other ways to keep it sleek and curled (frizz serums, pin curls at night, and silk pillowcases). It's even much better to put your hair up in a bun or some other style than to curl "dirty" hair. Your hair will remain thicker, fuller and healthier if you cultivate this habit.
This also applies to all textures and styles, even locs. If your loctitian uses just any grease or pomade to twist your hair, and sits you under a hot dryier, you are essentially frying your scalp and hair. If your ears are burning, I assure you the same is happening with your scalp. This is one of the contributing factors to scalp inflammation leading to scarring hairloss that a lot of loc wearers are experiencing. Always opt for cooler temperatures in those instance, or simply air drying when possible.
2. Tight Styles and tension: They are are not just uncomfortable, they damage your follicles and puts your scalp at risk for infections. It used to be a collective agreement that the tighter the style (braids, locs, weaves), the neater it looked and the longer it would last. You probably know by now, tight styles literally mean you are plucking your hairs in slow motion. The weaker hairs usually come out right away, explaining why we often lose the hair around the edges first. Tightness and tension also creates knicks in the scalp, coupled with moisture and dirt, making us susceptible to low grade fungal and bacterial infections. Eventually, that repeated trauma inflames the follicles and scars, which is when the hairloss starts to become permanent. Pay attention to your styles: if it hurts, take it down.
3. Chemical Treatments and Application Time: You would not believe how many people I know who have intentionally slept with color applications in their hair. I met someone who would sleep with the color in to make sure it "took well." Or others who keep relaxers in way past the time instructed on the box, or accidentally fell asleep with it! Not everyone feel the burn like others, so some people may think that they can keep it in longer. The answer is no. Follow instructions to the T when it comes to any chemical treatments. Cosmetic chemists have designed the products to work a certain way and they know that past this average time span it will starts to damage your strands and skin ( scalp burns and scarring will kill your follicles). For chemical treatments, I will venture to say if you can afford it, get it professionally done by a competent stylist. The stylist will know what protection your hair needs before and after the application as well. There are many instances where a woman's hair came out in "clumps" after chemical treatments simply because they did not use neutralizing shampoo to halt the process. You don't have to be a hair expert, you just have to hire a good one!
While you are drinking your water, taking your vitamins, deep conditioning and overall taking care of your mane, remember these 3 tips to maximize and truly get the benefits of all the good you are doing for your hair journey.
Here's a gratuitous pic of Grace's Fro on Halloween!
In Love, Health and Presence of Mind
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- Tags: balding, hair chemical burns, hair damage, hair thinning, hairloss, heat damage, protein mask, protein treatment, thinning hair