As the colder weather approaches, don’t let your hair get caught up in the dryness.
Truth be told, the curlier your hair is, the dryer it is.
Your hair care regimen should change as the seasons do, and it is important always to transition your hairstyles. 4C maintenance requires more moisture than other hair types to soften and strengthen strands.
The chilly winds of winter add on to the dryness, making us even more prone to breakage and damage. During the colder months of the year, you may have to double or even triple your hydration. You may also look at it like it’s a bit excessive, but you will thank yourself later if you do!
We wear different hairstyles for fun, but also to help our natural hair. Containing our strands makes it easier to keep up with moisture and to also refrain from constant detangling. Most women with 4C hair benefit most from protective styling, as it encourages hair growth too. Some hairstyles are favored more during certain times of the year, but that doesn’t mean others aren’t.
As long as you are keeping up with your hair’s necessities, you should be able to change up your looks, even in winter!
Protective Styles for Your Hair
The truth is, any protective style can help your hair any time of the year.
Of course, some forms are more convenient during certain seasons, but the winter season is all about maintaining moisture. Whether your style is deemed as a protective or not, you are allowed to wear your hair however you please. The only catch is to guarantee you can keep up with it.
No 4C haired woman has allowed her hair to thrive without knowing exactly what her hair needs. Even though we have similar hair types, our strands have looks and behaviors of their own, and we need to abide by its demands.
To increase the overall state of your natural hair during the winter, do not just focus on wearing protective styles, but going for protective measures. What I mean by this is to make sure you are caring for your hair during styles and in between them. You must be able to keep your hair hydrated through the dry season with heavier oils and treatments.
So, are you a 4C Naturalista who is looking for…
…Low Maintenance Styles?
For some of us, the colder weather causes us to stay inside more and outside less.
When you’re not too busy, you tend to opt for the more straightforward options in life. Uncomplicated hairstyles that last long are perfect for those who want to be able to transition between styles smoothly.
Especially for those who are still in the beginning phases of natural hair care, low maintenance styles helps to ease the frustration that might come with it.
High, low, sideways, or messy, buns are some of the best protective styles to rock during the winter time.
You can wear them often and in many different ways. 4C hair is notorious for shrinkage, so you have to have enough hair to put it up or, at least, add hair pieces.
Wearing your hair in a bun helps to change up your look as well as tuck away your ends. Since your hair comes into contact with things every day, your ends end up drier and weaker than your roots. This is why we pay close attention to them as we care for our natural hair.
Buns don’t have to be perfect; you can tie your hair up however you please and be out the door! You can stretch your hair the night before if desired.
With twists, braids, Bantu knots, or similar methods, you can better manage your strands when it is time to style.
Keep in Mind While Styling
You want to begin on hair that is dry, clean, and detangled.
If you bun your hair while it’s wet, not only are you reversing any stretching, but you are making your strands weaker if they take forever to dry. Your porosity will determine what is best for you since some women with different textures can style on wet hair.
As you work your magic, there are only three rules always to remember when styling a protective style:
1. Do not style tightly –
You want to minimize tension on your strands by ensuring you do not pull or pin hair too tightly. Any soreness after styling is a sign to redo ASAP!
2. Use hair-friendly tools –
Any elastics with metal or rubber bands are not good. They are too tight and can pull away at our tresses easily. Silicone ponytail holders are good replacers, and you can even DIY your own! Tame using a natural bristle brush, or fine-tooth comb (do not apply to go through hair, but to smooth the surface).
3. Natural gels –
Sleek looks are in, but be sure to go for organic options such as aloe vera or flaxseed gel to enrich your crown. Synthetic gels will add on to dryness, and natural won’t.
You can refresh each day with the oil or butter of your choice (and a little spritz if needed) to maintain hydration and shine. If necessary, touching up with gel daily is perfectly fine. You can also put a satin scarf around your bun to lay the hair around it after styling and overnight.
After a few days, depending on your hair’s state, simply take the hair down to wash, moisturize, and repeat! If you are using any hair extensions, you may be able to wear styles longer as long as you maintain the look.
…Lasting Moisturized Styles?
The best way to allow your hair to stay hydrated throughout the day is by using the right products.
But also choosing the best hairstyles to assist with moisture retention. Looks that give easy access to your scalp make it more convenient always to touch up your style and to keep it relatively clean.
Natural hairstyles are the best for this since they hold moisture longer.
Updos vary depending on the length of your hair; those with longer lengths can style their hair in so many different ways.
Even if you’re still rocking a TWA, depending on that length, you’re able to add on afro extensions to help bring forth your desired look. There are so many ways to style an updo, and those chilly winter nights are perfect to stay in to perfect your technique.
To maximize your moisturized strands, go for styles that, after styling, can last about a week or so. Any natural hairstyle that lasts longer than two weeks doesn’t get the utmost care like the styles that get us by weekly through the chilly season. During this time, you want to lessen your manipulation by keeping your hair in some braid or twist style.
Maintaining a natural updo is a simple 3-step process that you can add to your winter regimen.
Revive strands by using an organic spritz, or creating your own. The first ingredient your hair needs to come to life is the universal hydrator: water.
You can use a water-based moisturizer or leave-in conditioner to begin moisturizing your tresses. The key to touching up protective styles is to dab, squeeze, or spray products into place to minimize frizz and flyaways.
Lastly, you can seal your scalp and ends with an oil of your choice.
You can alter the routine to fit your hair’s preference, as it is very similar to the L.O.C. method, which is used to seal moisture. Just as any other protective style, you must also use scarves to keep the hair in place and to protect it at night.
For natural updos, there are so many different styles to create! This is where the beauty of 4C really begins to show when women can transform their hair into a variety of styles. If you’re looking for an achievable style from your hair length, browse the web full of bloggers and stylists who share their hairstyles similar to your own.
Also, check out these growing protective styles that you can personalize:
You can create an illusion of a mohawk with braids or twists. As there are many ways to make this looks, you can braid the top of your hair with added extensions, or flat twist your side strands into mini space buns and let the rest flourish. You can even create your own idea and rock a faux hawk.
Twist ‘N Tuck
If your hair is thriving now, keep up the excellent work to ensure thick, full hair.
Most kinky-haired women have hair so thick they don’t even know where to begin, but it’s a blessing in disguise. If you have the length and thickness, you can loosely twist the ends to tuck away and pin into the style of your choice.
4C clip-ins can help to add as much hair as you need if needed.
I love braided crowns because they are a great way to showcase all the different types of braids.
Classic, Dutch, fishtail, you name it. You can add a part if you’d like, or design a “half” crown. The point is to make it yours and also to make sure it isn’t styled too tightly, especially around your hairline.
Flat Twist Styles
A versatile hairstyle, you can flat twist your hair into a bun, updo, ponytail, or straight down. You can even merely rock single twists. It is an uncomplicated look that can turn out sophisticated and stylish. Lively tresses always look so great while twisted, am I right?
You exude so much confidence naturally when you rock your Bantu knots. Many women love Bantu knots for the curls produced when unraveled, but we can also enjoy the knots as its own style. With braids or accessories, you can complement however you like, while making your statement.
…Strength and Length Styles?
While we all love to be able to give our hair what it needs, the one thing that makes it all worthwhile is the patience required to gain healthy hair.
The longer your hair gets, the weaker the ends become, so you want to be able to retain all the length and strength as possible. We are already susceptible to short, weak hair, so it is up to us to increase our hair’s potential.
The less manipulation your hair endures, the more chance it has to grow in peace. Longer-lasting styles should not become neglected. If you choose to not work with your hair too often, then be sure to moisturize daily, at a minimum. With these styles, since your ends stay tucked away, you have to focus on hydrated roots.
You can also wash about halfway through your wear to retouch your style.
Through different cultures, we’ve all heard that braids encourage hair growth.
This is true considering that wearing your hair in braids contains your strands to keep from frictional hair breakage or constant maintenance. You can wear them individually or by cornrows. When styling, you want to ensure that the braids are not tight because they can also become the cause for hair loss. Using the proper tools as mentioned before can help guarantee optimal growth.
To keep up with your braided style, you can rely on the three-step regimen for natural hair, since that’s your focus. Remember never to rub the products into hair, but to either find sprays or techniques that reduce frizz. You can redo the braids whenever they become loose to extend the style life as well.
But remember, the maximum time frame for braided styles is about six to eight weeks.
When I first heard of crochet, all I thought they were good for were faux locs.
In reality, professional stylists have taken crochet to the next level. Crochet techniques have embraced more natural-looking styles. With some cornrows, a crochet needle, and hair pieces, you can transform your look easy enough to be able to wear a variety of styles that allow access to your scalp during harsh weather.
You can use crochet afro hair to mimic your own natural afro without having to expose your strands. You can do individual styles such as the infamous faux locs and Havana twists. If you want to find a stylist who can create a look as good as a weave, you’ll be able to switch over since it’s much faster to style, and easier to maintain.
When you look long term, the benefits from crochet styles outweigh those from wigs or weaves.
Taking the Protective Measures
Overall, you want to make sure always to keep your hair washed, trimmed, and moisturized often.
Your regimen should always include hydration throughout styles, but the winter calls for a more extensive approach. Use all-natural products and methods to refrain from drying your hair out and causing it to become weaker.
4C natural hair is known for the coils and kinks to tight, that the curls may or may not be defined. It is delicate but mutable. Whether you’re transitioning from relaxed hair or continuing your big chop journey, you have to enjoy your natural hair at any length and all the things you can do to it. 4C’s unimaginable shrinkage can cause you to even shock yourself as to what your hair can do.
Protect your hair even further by continuously wearing hats or head wraps to protect your hair as you travel on a day to day basis. You can purchase items made with natural haired women in mind, made from friction-free fabrics, or you can sew on a silk lining.
Maintaining a healthy lifestyle through the holiday season can also encourage stronger strands straight from the scalp, making your whole routine just a bit easier overall.
Taking care of your natural hair goes down to every decision that could influence your hair in any way: your diet, hairstyles, fabric choices, and patience.