Did Protective Styling Cause More Breakage?

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Ok guys, I’m clearly thinking out loud as I try to figure out this whole bald spot/breakage thing. As I examined the area where the bald spot is, it looks as though there is more breakage happening around that area although it’s very small. (Any breakage is bad breakage in my opinion!) I’m trying my best not to go into panic mode, but I want this breakage to STOP! Losing hair at the front of your head is one of the worst areas to have this happen in my opinion. I’m just glad that there is plenty of hair there to camouflage the affected area right now. Anyhoo, I’m still reading and looking things up on the internet regarding all the possible reasons and causes of breakage and hair loss. Now granted, I know all of the basic causes, but I just want to make sure I’m not overlooking something. Then the light bulb went off in my head. Yes, I had another EUREKA moment. 😉

Just a few weeks ago I took out my kinky twist braids. I had them in for almost 3 months, and I blogged about how upset I was that my new growth caused me to take them out sooner. Remember how I talk about I’m “team save the edges” and how I didn’t put my braids into cute buns on top of my head or any other up-dos that would put stress on my edges? Well while I didn’t do any of those things, I did have the (bad) habit of flipping the braids in the front to the back to keep them out of my face. My husband even told me I needed to stop doing that because it was  pulling on my roots. The one time I should have listened to him…

You know where I’m going with this, right? Where is this new breakage that I’ve found? In the front, in those same areas where I was flipping back my braids. The stress I was putting on my fragile roots for almost three months of constantly flipping my hair back was clearly too much. Now that the braids are out and my hair has had a chance to breathe, I’m seeing the effects of my rough treatment of my hair. AND, I might add, my braids were more than likely done too tight even though I’m not tender headed. It’s sad when you expect your braids to hurt because that’s how most hair braiders braid hair – tightly. They catch every edge and every nap so tightly that if the wind blows on your scalp, you’re in tears afterwards. Braids should never hurt. NEVER. Now I’m not saying that I’ll never get braids again, because I will. I think from now on I’ll lean more towards crochet braids, and even with those you have to be careful of how tightly your cornrows are braided and the type of hair you use for your braids as certain synthetic hair can cause irritation and breakage to your hair.

In the end, I think I figured out where I went wrong you guys. I’m dealing with two issues here:

  1. The unexplained scalp pain that comes and goes and the small bald spot that occurred in that area BEFORE I got my braids
  2. Breakage in the area where I continuously flipped my braids to the back

Reading other blogs and surfing through YouTube and other places on the internet on this subject has helped me to figure out a solid game plan of how to attack these issues. I’m going to stick to a regular hair care routine that consists of deep conditioning and hot oil treatments, and I’m going to start back taking my biotin supplements. I’m also going to continue to be gentle with my hair and not manipulate it (comb, touch, pull, etc.) too much. I know in time I will see the results that I’m looking for, which is healthier hair, but being patient is key. Good things come to those who wait. 🙂

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9 responses »

  1. Good thinking sweet, also, on your bald spot, try either, Castor Oil, Avocado Oil or Pure Aloe Vera from the plant, apply about 1 a week to see if that will improve the growth, not every day, just once a week, try each for 6 weeks each one to see which one works for you the best, castor oil works for me the best so far, keep the posts coming and thank you.
    Smilies!!!!!!!

    • Thank you isleofazure, that is great advice! I’ve been using peppermint essential oil, Jamaican black castor oil, and olive oil. I had my sister in law look at the area and she said it looks like hair is growing back. YAY!!!!! But I will definitely try what you suggested to. I’ve been very, VERY gentle with that area and don’t even comb my hair there. I finger detangle now.

      • Excellent my dear, no worries, if what yo using is working for you then by all means do continue, whatever works for your tresses that is the best to do. Great to hear its working and keep it up, do not give up, you can do this my dear, one day at a time!!! 😀 😀 😀
        Smilies!!!!!!

      • Oh absolutely! But I’m always looking for new suggestions, and appreciate yours! Please keep them coming!! I love your positive thoughts! 🙂

  2. Wow,you kept your braids for 3 months? How do you guys do that? I went on a challenge to keep mine for 2 months.. jeez,i have done like 6 weeks,am giving up. I used to have a bald spot at the front of my hair. I started using jbco daily,it helped.. A little goes a long way

    • LOL! Yes naturalrify, three months! But it depends on the STYLE of braids that I get that determines how long I can keep them. Box braids (medium size) or Senegalese twists can last for me 3 months. Kinky twists don’t last that long for me. YES to the JBCO! I’ve been using it and I’m definitely seeing results on my bald spot! It’s crazy how common I’m finding this is (having a bald spot) with fellow naturalistas! Thanks for the tip, hun! 🙂

      • Same here! But nope. And they weren’t big braids either, they were on the small side! And I tied my hair up every night! But I got 2 1/2 months out of them so that wasn’t too bad.

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