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Bad hair breakage is never a good thing. There is regret, sadness, (even some tears) and wallowing in self-pity for a little while. It can be embarrassing if you are losing edges or your hair is breaking off but the bottom line is to pick yourself up, dust yourself off and work on the problem. If you find you are having severe breakage and have no idea what to do then you need to take heed.

Reflection and Retreat
Reflection is important to finding out what went wrong. Were you neglecting your hair? Did you use too much heat, color or not enough deep conditioning? Were you wearing braids or protective styles too tight or even too long? Finding out the reason for your breakage is just as important as stopping the bad behavior.

After you have figured out what went wrong, back off from the bad habits that created the breakage. Too much heat? Steer clear for a while to allow your hair to have time to repair without more additional damage. Wearing your styles too tightly? Leave them alone too. Too much color…you get the point. Just stop and work on curtailing the damage.

Screen Shot 2014-10-16 at 10.51.21 AMDo regular deep conditioning treatments
You don’t have to spend tons of money going to a salon for treatments anymore as most of us are becoming more educated on how to take care of our own hair. Most naturals are bona-fide DIYers when it comes to their tresses and as that can seem scary to some, it really just means becoming more educated on your hair and what it needs. Do weekly deep conditioning or after every wash. Hair that is deep conditioned regularly is more manageable, softer and less prone to further breakage.

Add heat to make the conditioner work harder and your hair will be softer and smoother because of it. Heating your conditioner up to 35 degrees C / 95 degrees F will increase the amount and effectiveness of adsorption of the conditioner into your strands. You can use your own body heat by just covering your hair with a plastic cap, wrap it up with a scarf and/or a warm towel.

Protein Treatments
There needs to be a proper balance of moisture and protein in our strands. If you color or straighten your hair, protein treatments will strengthen areas of the hair that are weakened by the chemicals and heat. They build the hair shaft back up from our daily manipulations that chip away at the hair’s cuticle. They add resiliency to your strands and the protein properties will attach directly to the hair follicle and harden the cuticle layer which protects it from further damage.

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  • Me

    i’m dealing with this right now (been dealing w/it for about 3 months so far). didn’t take care of my braids & ended up w/a head full of really bad breakage but it’s growing back. i didn’t do most of this list tho. as soon as i realized the amount of damage, i cut out ALL the fancy stuff & went straight for the bare basics.

    1: light shampoo, condition, & leave-in conditioner every week (i finger detangle my whole head while wet or w/conditioner still in it). takes about an hour not including air drying time.

    2: rub castor oil into my scalp twice a week & give myself a scalp massage every morning & night (i’m pretty sure i could use just about any oil for this, but i have extra dry scalp that only castor oil seems to soothe). takes about 10 minutes.

    3: finger detangle my broken roots every night & braid my hair in 6-8 jumbo plaits for bed to keep the damaged hair from snagging on the longer hair. this takes about 15-20 minutes each night depending on how big the braids are & how distracted i am.

    whenever i leave the house i wear my hair in a puff w/a loose headband or just out otherwise it stays in those plaits all day so i don’t bother my hair. & since i’m not doing any special styles for a while, i don’t use any combs or brushes which prevents any more of my ends breaking off. the castor oil keeps my hair really soft all week & the massages help stimulate more natural oils to keep all of my hair moisturized so i don’t need any extra products. so far it’s working. my undamaged hair (i have 4c type hair everywhere) is about 1-2 inches away from apl & my damaged hair went from about a half inch long in august to almost 2 inches this month in most areas. it’ll take me over a year to grow all the damaged hair out but keeping my routine extra simple is definitely helping to not cause any more damage. it sounds really boring but i know the more boring my routine, the happier my hair is. i’ll go back to fancy styles next year or so, but i’ll only do them every once in a while & be more careful with them. no more jumping through hoops to rock the latest hairdo. it might be time to give up this youtube obsession too b/c i think watching all those tutorials is what had me doing too much in the first place.

  • Great advice. I find that what works best for my hair is just letting my hair be and allowing it to do its thing. I try not to manipulate it very much and I moisturize with with a shea butter, coconut oil (<–the best) and castor oil mix.

  • Hair breakage is very emotional. I agree that deep conditioning can really solve a lot of those problems. Thanks for sharing.

  • Right Stef

    I always had long hair and keep it, but it is very difficult to grow without breakage. I have tried every shampoo to help stop the breakage when I grow my hair out, and I have to recommend the Shielo Hydrate Shampoo and Conditioner to you – because its the only shampoo where I see a difference after one use. It smells very clean, not overly fruit or perfumed, which gives you a nice, natural feeling. I has great frizz control and I do not have the same hair breakage I used to have. The bets part is, a bottle lasts me like 2 months, cause you only need a little bit of the product, and it soaps up your entire hair! The Shielo Shampoo is similar to Fekaii (but better priced), but definitely better than a Suave or Herbal Essences. Suave makes my hair break alot!

  • Jessica

    Nutress Hair products has a great hair repair system. They
    prevent hair breakage, dryness, and improve the overall health of your hair.
    The Stop Break shampoo, conditioner, and the leave-in enhancer are the best ! These products are a must have for your hair regimen!