Healthy hair is at the foundation of attaining more length, volume, definition, or whatever else you may desire. However, many of us tend to forget that our scalp is apart of maintaining good hair health as well.
If your scalp is not healthy, it can begin to interfere with the growth and health of your hair. For example, if you are not cleansing your scalp on a consistent basis and an excess of product build-up begins to accumulate, your hair follicles can become clogged, slowing hair growth and potentially creating the rise of certain scalp conditions.
Here is how to maintain good scalp health with natural hair:
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1) MAKE SURE YOUR SCALP IS BEING REGULARLY CLEANSED
The first step to maintaining good scalp health and thus good hair health is making sure your scalp is cleansed. With each wash day, use a good shampoo to remove your scalp of product build-up. Additionally, you may find benefit using a clarifying shampoo once a month to do an even more thorough cleanse of your hair.
Making sure that your scalp is cleansed will allow for unrestricted hair growth and help keep the scalp stimulated with an infusion of strengthening ingredients and oils derived from your natural hair products.
2) DO ROUTINE SCALP MASSAGES
Scalp massages benefit the health of your scalp and can encourage hair growth. To complete a scalp massage, use the palms of your fingertips to gently yet firmly massage throughout your scalp for at least two minutes. Completing regular scalp massages will help to stimulate blood flow at the roots of your hair.
Aside from promoting good scalp health, regular scalp massages have also been found to provide headache relief and boost one’s mood.
3) USE AN OIL TO MASSAGE YOUR SCALP
In addition to completing regular scalp massages, it helps to use a stimulating oil during the process. Jamaican black castor oil is just one good recommendation of oils to use during a scalp massage.
Simply apply the oil of your choosing to your fingertips and massage it into your scalp and edges as well. Stimulating oils like Jamaican black castor oil will help supply your roots with various nutrients that help to strengthen your strands and promote hair growth.
4) AVOID WEARING TIGHT STYLES TOO FREQUENTLY
Some of our favorite styles like puffs, buns, box braids, etc. can cause adverse effects on the scalp if worn too tightly, too frequently. When wearing a bun or a puff for example, our strands are being pulled in various directions, causing tension on the scalp. So much so that it can begin to cause breakage and thinning along the hairline, crown area, and/or nape area.
To maintain good scalp health in your natural hair, try to limit how often you wear tight pulled-back styles and switch up your hairstyles from time to time.
5) GIVE YOUR SCALP A BREAK IN BETWEEN PROTECTIVE STYLES
Protective styles can provide multiple benefits for our natural hair with improved length retention being one of them. However, the weight of the extra synthetic hair we use with some of our favorite protective styles – box braids, faux locs, etc. can cause stress on the scalp creating that sore and tender feeling.
The weight and tightness of this added hair if left in too long can cause breakage and various levels of damage to the scalp if worn too frequently or for too long. Give your hair breaks in between protective styles of at least a couple of weeks before switching to the next one.
¹Fashion, Style and Personal Care, and Spa Salon. “What Are The Benefits Of A Scalp Massage? | Livestrong.Com”. LIVESTRONG.COM, 2018, https://www.livestrong.com/article/145242-what-are-the-benefits-of-a-scalp-massage/. Accessed 22 Dec 2018.