For most of my life, I was under the impression that 4c hair couldn’t grow long. I thought that only types 1 through 3 had the ability to gain length. I was constantly on the search for hair products that would grow my hair and I was constantly disappointed that I would never find them. What I didn’t realize is that the real secret to 4c hair length retention was in the way that I was treating my hair – or rather – the way that I was mistreating my hair.
Learning from Past Mistakes
The hair practices that I was using didn’t produce the results that I wanted. Based on what I know now, it seems as though I was doing everything wrong! I was rough with my hair, I wouldn’t moisturize properly or consistently, and I didn’t protect it properly from the elements. A lot of the new techniques and practices required me to change the way that I viewed hair care and my hair.
Five Secrets to 4c Hair Length Retention
The one suggestion that I would often come across is that I needed to add moisture to my hair to prevent breakage; however, I found that this alone is not enough. No matter how much moisture I added, my retention remained stunted. What I came to realize was that the techniques that I used to manipulate and care for my strands were just as detrimental.
Now my retention is great and my hair is thriving! What changed?
Here is a list of five “secrets” that I discovered, for better 4c hair length retention:
1. Use Satin or Silk Scarfs and Pillow Cases
Investing in a good quality satin scarf or pillowcase can improve the amount of moisture that your hair retains on a day-to-day basis. Cotton headscarves and pillowcases can absorb too much moisture and products from your hair.
2. Keep Your Hair Up
As your hair reaches and passes neck length, keep your hair up and off your shoulders to prevent wear and tear on the ends of your hair.
3. Wash Your Hair in Twists
It’s very easy for 4c hair to become tangled and matted, especially during the washing processes. Washing your hair in two strand twists helps to eliminate the chances of this happening.
4. Dry Your Hair with a T-shirt
Using a cotton T-shirt to dry your hair is less damaging to your hair than using a terrycloth towel. The loops on a terrycloth towel can snag and catch on your hair resulting in split and broken ends.
5. Use Your Fingers to Detangle and Style
Traditional combs can cause a lot of wear and tear on your fragile 4c hair. Using your fingers to detangle and style your hair can provide the gentle manipulation that your hair needs to flourish.
Secrets for Success
Retaining length with 4c hair can be quite challenging, however, these “secrets” for length retention have made a tremendous difference in getting me past the hair milestones.
What has been the most influential “secret” in your hair journey?