I tend to have hand-in-hair syndrome (don't worry; it's not serious), so in addition to variety, I wear hair extensions as a protective style so I can leave my hair alone. Lately, I've become obsessed with Marley Twists mostly because I can do them myself! #WIN
The evidence of my obsession:
|Exhibit A: December 2012|
|Exhibit B: January 2013|
|Exhibit C: February 2013|
But leaving my hair alone doesn't really mean leaving my hair alone. Just because my hair is in twists or braids doesn't mean I don't have to do anything with it. Nothing is worse than taking down your twists/braids and seeing that you retained NO length. Ok, there are plenty of things that are worse, but you get my point. To ensure that my hair isn't dry and brittle when I take my extensions down, I follow these steps:
I mist my hair morning and night with a mix of water, my favorite conditioner, my favorite oil (varies), and an essential oil. It's as simple as that. The mix varies depending on the day, but it's important that the main ingredient is water. You might need to spray your hair more often depending on the weather. You will eventually get a feel for whether your hair needs to be misted once a day, twice a day, or more.
About every two days, after misting at night, I use an oil to "seal in" the moisture. See, water is what moisturizes our hair, but you need an oil or butter to seal in that moisture. If you don't seal, the water will evaporate and your hair will still be dry. You can use coconut oil, olive oil, shea butter, etc. Basically, whatever your hair likes. If your hair is more dense/thick/coily, you can use a thicker or heavier product. But whatever you choose, use it sparingly. Using too much product can result in build up making it impossible for water to penetrate your hair the next day when you mist your hair again. If water can't get into the hair shaft, you can't possibly seal in moisture.
Once or twice a week, after using the oil, I use a hair cream. The difference between hair creams and hair butters is that creams are water-based. I find that creams soften my hair and provide additional shine and luster. If you're familiar with the LOC method, that is exactly what I am describing: liquid, oil, cream. I believe the LOC method originated with BlackOnyx77 (video below):
Side note: Is it a requirement for all natural hair videos to be over 10 minutes?
I use this method whether I have extensions or not. The only difference is that I tend to use a little more water, oil, and cream when I have extensions to make up for the fact that the extensions also are soaking up that goodness.
How do you care for your hair while wearing extensions?