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Hair Length and Shrinkage: Length Today, Short Tomorrow

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Shrinkage…it’s a problem that many naturalistas must deal with and sometimes it affects our babies too. For some, shrinkage is no big deal. And for others, it is. We’re not here to judge, however, we know that our hair is our crowning glory and when we work hard to help maintain our child’s hair, we’d love to be able to show it off…we mean, we’d love for them to be able to show it off. Here are some tips on how you can properly minimize shrinkage for your kid’s hair.

 

Twist or Braid Out

This is one of the most popular techniques for reducing shrinkage. For this method, you would wash, and apply product like you normally do. Don’t skip the moisturizing step. Then, you either create twists or braids throughout your child’s hair. Determining whether to use twists or braids is a personal choice. Try both and see which ones work best. For some, twists are easier and faster. For others, braids hold better in the little one’s hair. Once the twists/braids are complete, allow to air dry, or if you’re short on time, put your child underneath a bonnet dryer with a low heat setting. Make sure the twists are fully dry before unraveling. And voila, your baby should not have lengthened hair. To make this method work for you even better. You could do the twists on hair that is already blown out.

 

Banding

banded natural hairBanding is a fairly easy method, but can be time consuming to do. Banding involves sectioning off the hair while it’s wet. Then on each section, you apply rubber bands through each section of hair from root to tip. The more bands you use, the more elongated the style will look. The amount of rubber bands you use will be best determined by the length of your child’s hair. If your child’s hair is about shoulder length, consider starting off with 5-6 rubber bands. Allow the bands to stay in your child’s hair until it’s fully dry. Unravel the bands and your child should have well stretched out curls.

 

Blow Dry It Straight

For some, this sort of defeats the purpose of children being natural. For others, it’s the best way to handle their child’s hair. If you want to see more length of your natural child, then simply blow their hair out. This may make it slightly easier for you to manage their hair as well, especially if they’re very young. You wash, then blow-dry and style however you choose. But keep in mind, that this is a process. If your child has a hard time sitting still for long periods of time, then you may want to forego this option. Make sure to use a heat protectant when blow drying their hair to reduce and prevent irreversible heat damage.

 

Tension Method

natural hair tension method1Wash and apply products to your little one’s hair. Then use a blow dryer with a diffuser, on a low to medium heat setting, to dry the hair. You also have the option of having them sit under a hooded dryer. Once their hair is completely dry, utilize the nozzle air concentrator attachment. This may also be called the set nozzle. Attach it to the blow dryer. Grab medium sections of hair, and stretch their hair, while directing the nozzle from the root of the hair to the tips. Continue to gently stretch and blow dry, and your child should have beautifully stretched non-frizzy curls.

 

Pineapple Method

Pineapple method natural hair shop satin crunchieMany naturals swear by this method and it’s a great one! This doesn’t require any heat whatsoever. Wash and apply products to your child’s hair and allow it to air-dry. Once the hair is dry, put their hair up in the highest ponytail possible using a satin scrunchie. A bun works as well. If you do this overnight, by the morning, their hair should have stretched out significantly.

We wish you luck on your child’s natural hair care journey. Try out these methods and let us know how they worked out. If you have a method not listed, please let us know as well! Happy growing.

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