When the weather heats up, African American women may need to tweak their hair care routines to make sure their hairstyles don't wilt. Because black hair has a natural tendency to be dry, it's important to adhere to a moisturizing regimen during the hottest months of the year so that heat and humidity don't wreck your hair. By following a few basic tips during the summer, your hair will look fantastic, and stay healthy, all season long.
Wavy & Curly
- Instead of trying to achieve bone-straight hairstyles, which probably won't hold up to the heat and humidity, let your hair's natural tendency to curl take over. If you have a texturizer or your hair is naturally curly, this will be easy. Simply shampoo, condition and apply the curl-enhancing products of your choice to damp hair. This can be alcohol-free gels, pomades or creams. Allow your hair to dry naturally, or use a diffuser dryer on low heat.
If your hair is relaxed straight, you can still achieve a curly look, but you'll need magnetic rollers for a wet set or bendable rollers for a dry set to get it.
Protect Your Hair
- Keep heat styling on black hair to a minimum. Don't use a flat iron or curling iron more than once a week. Instead, use wet sets on magnetic rollers or bendable rods.
Try hairstyles that keep your ends protected. When the ends of African American hair are constantly exposed to the elements and allowed to rub on clothing and cotton pillowcases, they're more prone to dryness and breakage.
Choose styles that keep your ends protected, such as braids, two-strand twists, cornrows, flat twists and buns. You can use extensions, if you like, but if your hair is long enough, you can use your own hair for these styles.
If you know you'll be outside for an extended period, wear a hat. Not only will a wide-brimmed hat protect your face from the sun, but it will also protect your hair. Black hair leans toward being dry, so you should keep it protected from the sun as much as possible to prevent further dryness.
Use moisturizing conditioners after shampooing and as leave-ins. Deep condition your hair two to three times a month for added moisture. The more moisturized African American hair is, the less likely it is to break.
- Summer is a great season for short hair. Long, thick hair on the back of your neck can make you feel hotter.
Choose short styles such as Afros, pixie cuts and bobs. Daily maintenance will be a breeze, and the shorter length will keep you cool during the summer.