I have never met a natural who wasn't into protective styling.
A plethora of benefits come with it--healthy hair growth, length retention, protection from elements of the weather and styling tools, and not to mention, they are convenient for those with busy lifestyles.
Like every great thing, however, comes a list of rules to abide by in order to achieve what is desired. I consider myself simplistic in terms of my hair routine, so my list won't be as long as some-- lucky for you. Make the most of your next protective style with these 3 rules of thumb.
Even if you are a low or no-poo girl, it is crucial to rid your scalp of product and dirt build-up before installing your next PS. On wash day before my styling, I opt for . During my actual protective style I like to use DevaCurl No Poo--all I do is shake and spray my scalp a few times to absorb the excess oils and dirt, since I'm not able to do a thorough wash while I have twists or weave. I like the Curl & Shine Conditioner for detangling and adding softness to my natural hair. Fresh out of the shower, I will spritz a leave-in like ApHogee Moisture-Rich, and seal with an all natural blended oil or serum like Rasa Namaste and Nubian Heritage Grow & Strengthen.
The night prior to, I multi-pineapple my hair to keep it stretched. A braid-out or twist-out is not entirely necessary since most of your natural hair will be tucked away within the added hair the next day, anyway. Stay away from the flat ironing or blow drying beforehand, as well. All of that extra pulling, tugging, drying, and twisting will wear your hair out by the time the styling process takes place. This might lead to weaker hair, which in turn ends up in breakage.
3. Moisturize from root to end
I live for a blended oil that protects my hair, seals my ends, and hydrates my scalp. I am sure to not saturate my scalp minutes before styling, as this can result in a more difficult time in adding hair or braiding. However, I do massage my scalp the night before (and after wash day) with a blend of essential and carrier oils to promote hair growth while my natural will be tucked away for the following week or two.