African Hair – Weave vs Braids vs Natural
Women of colour and especially women with African roots can tell you a lot about their hair issues! We have more bad hair days than most, and yet, we seem to be the ones with the most choice! Weaves, braids, or just going natural…it’s such fun to pick and choose! I’m a fan of a good weave and yet once in a while, I like the look which my natural (I mean permed, lol) hair gives me minus extensions. Also, in times of heat, I love me some braids or corn rows done in edgy, funky styles to make them stand out. So yes, I take full advantage of all the options available! However when it comes to what’s right for your scalp and hair, it would be a good idea to find out just which style (weave, braids, perms) suits you best. It’s most important to at least, have healthy, natural hair as a basic; the fixing in of extensions or weaves should always be an option, not a must!
Fine, light hair. If the hair on your scalp is light in texture, it would be best to avoid tight extensions which are close to your scalp, for example, braids or cornrows (for example “Ghana” weaving). These styles pull your hair back from your hairline and over a period of constant fixing, can actually lead to hair loss especially at the front. It would be best to simply fix a weave, but ensure that you apply hair treatment to your scalp regularly while the weave is on.
Coarse, thick hair. Women with thick, coarse and full hair find it can be a blessing – and a set back! It takes so long to fix in braids (for some it takes a whole day!). However, a healthy choice would be to do your favourite braiding styles be it half braids, pick-and-drop, or the full works. Thick hair is very versatile and can get away with a lot! The basic idea is, no matter your hair texture, constant care is very necessary. Investing in and regularly applying herbal hair treatments as well as the more pricey ones designed for your hair type, is the best bet. So even beneath a weave or with braids on, your hair and scalp stay well taken care of. Cut down on the perms, relaxers and focus more on regular shampooing (taking out the weave/braids every two weeks or so) ensures your Afro-centric hair stays clean, healthy and ready to go!