Dos and Dont’s of Child Hair Care

Okay, I know the title sounds judgmental…

But no, I am not telling you how to style your little angels hair; I am only suggesting things you could do differently. Not every hair style is suitable for a little girl or boy (if you are growing your son’s hair) – this is because some of these hair styles damage your kid’s hair!

To be honest, these types of styles damage anyone’s hair, but I feel especially bad when little children’s hair lines are already being ruined and they are being submitted to a life of stunted hair growth before they get a chance to complain. The scalp on your little one’s head is still fragile and so is the hair that comes out of it, especially in kids below five.

Here are some Don’ts:

Don’t use heavy extensions in your child’s hair, and don’t do tight braids. These put too much pressure on their delicate scalp and will lead to a receding hair line and stunted hair growth. Essentially, you are setting your child up for short hair, right of the bat; this is the reason why many black women feel their hair can’t grow, because permanent damage might have already been done to their hair follicles while they were children. The hair braiders in the market and in most salons are quite brutal. I remember once threading my hair and it felt like my forehead had been shifted into my scalp! She pulled my hair so tight and I just had a horrible headache and I was already about 8 years old then, I can only imagine how a 2-year-old will feel. Your little girl/boys hair should still be in nice bubbles or should be woven without any extension, so there is little or no tension on the scalp. Your children don’t need extensions; in my own opinion it just makes them look grown up! So if you can, let go of that bob hairstyle with “attachment”, that will be great!

Don’t let the hair stylist give you any excuse as to why they are pulling your child’s hair; some even claim it’s not tight at all. Ask your child or look at the hair – tight braids/weaving look tight and pulled at the roots.

Don’t do tight buns or any other style that make creates excess pressure on your child’s scalp or pulls on their edges.

Don’t relax your baby’s hair! I implore you!!!! Gosh the burns I used to get at the salon! Your little one’s scalp does not need that kind of hair stunting drama. I know she/he cries when you are combing their hair, but that’s not an excuse to relax it; the chemicals in relaxer can strip the color of boots and burn plastic. Please let your little one decide for themselves whether they want to put something so harsh in their hair. Relaxers disturb the hair PH balance and break down bonds that hold together the proteins in the hair shaft. Relaxers ruin hair and cause scalp irritations. I can go on forever about how horrid relaxers are, but that for another post.

Don’t do too much, your child is probably impatient and cannot sit through a 10 step conditioning method. The only thing they really need (if their hair hasn’t been previously damaged) is a good co-wash, or a shampoo and rinse conditioner, a leave in conditioner or some oil.

Now, let’s move on to some Do’s:

Do comb your baby’s hair with a wide tooth comb, gently from tips to roots. Make sure your child’s hair is either damp, or has a conditioning agent in it before combing. Do divide their hair into sections throughout the washing, combing and styling process.

Do monitor what is happening to your child’s hair; does it look pulled at the roots? Then it’s probably too tight and should be loosened immediately. It just breaks my heart to see kids with receding hair lines.

Do monitor your child’s hair products; look at the ingredients of the products you use. I beseech you! My next post is going to be on this, simply turn the back of anything you buy or want to buy to be certain the product is what it says it is on the front. There are several products out there that claim they are organic and are not! I have seen products claim pure coconut oil and yet they have petroleum products in them. So you need to avoid the sulphates, MEA, DEA’s , Petroleum, Parabens and other harmful chemicals when choosing hair products for your little one and for yourself. For healthy hair product suggestions for you and your kids see Here

If you are a DIY mum, during styling Do make sure your child is sufficiently occupied, make them comfortable with food/snacks/Video games/ Cartoons etc, anything to distract them from what you are doing and encourage them to sit steal. When your child is hungry/tired/bored they become restless and upset during the styling process and making the process very difficult.

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