Taking care of a 4c hair is not easy as the other hair types, and are not very hard at the same time, taking some extra measures and doing some routine maintenance would make it easy for you to keep your 4c hair lively and make it stronger and healthier,
Here are the things you should do regularly to maintain the hair well,
Moisturizing and sealing the 4c hair
Usually 4c hair is low poros in nature it takes a lot of time for water to reach your scalp, because of this nature your 4c hair gets dried quickly which leads to even hair damage,
In Order to escape from the moisture issue, you need to moisturize your hair often,
Eventhough you use water based moisturizers it gets dried quickly,
What might be the solution for this?
Here comes the LOC method,
LOC is the short form of Leave-in conditioner, oil and cream
First you need to apply the leave-in conditioner and then you should apply the oil, and at last the cream like shea butter,
Leave-in conditioner is water based so that in adds water to your hair and scalp,
Oil will form a layer around the conditioner and seal the moisture,
at last the butter cream adds further moisture to the hair and makes the hair moisturized well.
Finding the porosity level
This LOC method is best suitable for the 4c hair with high porosity and are not well suited for the low porosity hair,
Most of the the 4c hair are high porosity however you need to find it out before using this method,
you can find it just with your finger, run your finger through your hair, if it is soft and has no or less static then it is low porosity hair, if it is hard then it is high porosity hair.
Deep condition your hair atleast once a week, and twice a week if possible,
Deep conditioning overnight doesnt help much, but some people do it overnight, but i do not recommend deep conditioning for more than 30 minutes, 15-30 minutes is just enough to make your hair soft, shiny and bouncy.
Applying heat along with the deep conditioner will give you even better result than applying only the deep conditioner,
One more thing i should remind you is, if your hair is protein sensitive make sure to use the protein free deep conditioners i have already prepared a list you can check it out.
Washing your hair
Since 4c hair is already dry, shampooing it often will make it further dry and even cause scalp problems,
When you wash the 4c hair daily or often it loses the sebum (natural oil produced on the scalp to moisturize it) will be wiped out and makes it dry,
How often should you wash your hair?
Washing it 2 to 3 times a week will be the best timeline for your hair,
If your hair gets dirty you can cowash in between the timeline, cowashing will give you the necessary moisture and do not harm your hair much.
How to wash 4c hair?
- Pre poo your hair the night before you wash your hair, as i said already shampooing will make your hair dry so pre pooing will helps to avoid your hair becoming dry and maintain the moisture,
- Make your hair into sections, this will help your hair from matting and tangles,
- take the sections one by one and apply the on it, target your scalp rather than applying it just on your hair,
- After shampooing the scalp, gently wash your strangds,
- Now wash your hair with the water,
- I will always dilute the shampoo with a little water in the mug before applying, this prevents the chemicals in the shampoo directly touching the scalp.
Best shampoo and conditioner for 4c hair
The most important part of maintaining your 4c hair is keeping away your hair from tangles and detangling it in the right way
The best way that i recommend is, first finger detangle your hair,
finger detangling will helps to detangle all the bigger knots and clumps, yes it takes time, but it is the most effective way,
after finger detangling use a wide toothed comb or the detangling brushes
Related Article: Best detangler for matted afro hair
Don’t rip through knots and tangles
When you detangle your hair with the hair brush or comb and you find a knot donâ€™t rip through it thinking that the knots will come it, it will only damage your hair, when you find such knots remove the brush and use your fingers to detangle it.
Don’t comb dry and wet hair
Combing both extremely dry and wet hair will lead to breakage,
When your hair is soaking wet it is weak, fragile and very easy to breakage so donâ€™t do it even when you are in a hurry
Trimming at the right time
Trimming your hair once in 4 to 5 months is highly recommended, this will improve the hair growth,
Another important sign that tells you your hair needs a trim is when you find a splitends, whenever you find a split end, it means your hair need a salon.
Related Article: How to know when natural hair needs a trim
Styling your hair
Eventhough it damages your hair hair styling is one of the necessary thing to improve your self look and enhance your personality so it can not be avoided in your routine,
However using it moderately will not damage your hair much, donâ€™t overuse the styling products
Stop styling your hair every now and then
Some people have a habit of over using their styling tools, overusing the hair brush, comb, hair straighteners will cause damage,
If there is no need for styling your hair, donâ€™t touch it until you feel there is a need for a comb or any other tools.
Avoid drying products like hard gel
Most of these holding gels avialable on market contain drying alcohol which can cause damage to your 4c curls so it is better to avoid them.
Atleast add oil before applying the edge control gels
Related Article: Best edge control for 4c hair
Extra stretch your hair while styling
One more tip is stretch natural hai well before applying any styling products, 4c hairs are very well known for their shrinkage and when you give an extra stretch it paves way for the styling products or even the moisturizers get into your scalp easily.
Protective styling is a kind of style which helps to protect your hair ends from damage, the protective styles like short twists, cornrows, sleek buns will tuck the ends of the hair in and protect it from the damage caused by the outside world.
Protective styling will lead to low manipulation and this further leads to less hair damage.
Make sure to avoid the protective styles that add tension to your scalp, choose the style that contains less tension.
Massaging your head
A reglar oil massage will make your scalp and hair healthier and stronger, try to do it atleast 4 times in a month,
Massaging your scalp can make your thicker and stronger and helps in better blood circulation.
Sleep with sleep cap
Wearing sleep cap to your bed will helps to keep your hair from getting matted and tangled,
Other than this benefit, it also helps to keep the oil and any other styling products that you applied from being fed to your pillow.
Use products that works for your hair
There are lot of people that share their experience of using a product in youtube and even in the forums, make a list of products that work for other people of haing hair similar to you, there are very effective forums like naturally curly, which you can be a part of and read others opinion, talk with people and ask for any doubt you have regarding your 4c hair,
We are also in a plan of creating a forum, we will announce it once the process is completed, stay tuned