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Curly Nikki

Pregnant, Tired and Natural

By January 27th, 202117 Comments
Pregnant, Tired and Naturalby Shelli of Hairscapades

Chandra asks:

Being in the first trimester of pregnancy has really taken a toll on my energy level. And, I did all that bad-mouthing about PMS?!! This is on a whole different level! So what do you do when you don’t feel like washing, detangling, conditioning, styling or even looking at your hair? I have been mistreating my strands terribly … not protecting it at night, sometimes not moisturizing because I AM DRAINED! Any tips on styles that will hold me over until I feel like dealing with my hair? Thank you!

Shelli Responds:

Okay, I have ABSOLUTELY no direct experience in this regard. So, you may have to take my advice with a grain of salt and accept it as what it is, the well-meaning suggestions of a layman … or woman, to be more precise. That disclaimer aside, here are a few styling options that I think might help get you through this tough time with minimal effort, while still allowing you to maintain the health of your hair.

  • Medium to large twists or braids with extensions. Washing, conditioning and moisturizing will still be necessary, but with far less frequency and without the hassle of detangling. And, moisturizing is as simple as buying a leave-in conditioner or braid sheen spray to use every few days and then sealing with a light oil. This long-term protective style will make your day-to-day styling nominal. But, you still need to wear your satin bonnet or scarf at night and make certain that the braids/twists aren’t too tight or left in too long. Also, make certain to take a break between installs to give your scalp time to rest. This is always important to preserve one’s edges, but may be even more so during pregnancy as undue stress during this time may exacerbate postpartum shedding.
  • Mini or small twists on your own hair. These won’t last as long as the same style done with extensions. However, they still work as an option that can last a week to two and eliminate daily styling. In regard to care, all of the above still applies.
  • Wig it up! There are so many options and you can rock a different look every week if you like! You can cornrow your hair up for the week and rock a wig when out and about. Then, you release your cornrows once a week to every two weeks for wash day. Though you will have to detangle, the amount of time spent doing it will be far reduced as the cornrows will leave hair in a stretched state.

I also found this blog post, Natural Hair While Pregnant and on Bed Rest (ignore the picture! *lol*). The author outlines her regimen, which revolved around keeping her hair in six large braids the majority of the time, washing her hair once every two weeks and wearing al braid out when it was necessary to venture out in public. As you’re not on bed rest, the need to go out is probably far more frequent. So, you might be able to wear a neater version of the 6 braid updo that I detailed here and save the braid out for special occasions, like date night.

What styles have you worn during pregnancy that were easy on time and effort, without sacrificing the health of your hair?


CN Says:

I lived peacefully in twists and buns in early pregnancy, that is, until my face swoll up… had to let that ish down to balance some thangs out.

Pregnant, Tired and Natural

Had no idea I had morphed into that person… now that’s a punkin’ head!

I’d do my best to thoroughly deep condition on wash day so that the moisture would last until I could muster up the energy (or desire) to wash again. But even that was difficult. At the end of the day, basic care should see you through– wash, condition, detangle, moisturize, seal, twist or bun and repeat at least once a month, lol! If I had known, those retro scarf pinup styles would’ve been in my rotation too! You could also opt for the occasional light blow out this winter. You could keep your stretched hair in a couple of loose braids or bantu knots at night (moisturize & seal ends as needed), that you let loose and bun, or pin up during the day.

God speed chica!


  • Anonymous says:

    My advice would be stop being a slave to your hair-whether it is antural or relaxed.
    If you have opted for a natural hair routine that you cannot sustain anymore (because your priorities change with pregnancy), adapt. Find a new one.
    Personnaly, I'm relaxed- with very short hair that grows fast. When in my 8th month, I'll start braiding because I'm no superwoman. And I dont want to obsess on my hair while I can hardly sleep after the baby is born.

  • Anonymous says:

    Congrats Anon 12/14/11 11:45–safe preg & delivery!!

    I think the best thing to do is find one or two styles that's easy and attractive and make do and stop stressing about boredom of wearing the same hairstyle it will make your life so much easier! Put a little lipstick/lipgloss, keep the brows done and some mascara and call it a day, I guarantee you'll still look hot while prego, you'll have plenty of time to get your sexy back after delivery!

  • Anonymous says:

    Thanks for this post! Right on time, I JUST found out I'm pregnant!

  • hairscapades says:

    Nik! Look at you! I don't remember your face looking so … ummm … cheeky:)!! LOL!! Too cute!! Seriously, even with all the talk of the challenges of pregnancy/raising children (Nik, your stories are the best) … at 3 months to 40 … my Maternal Clock is beyond ticking, it's a time bomb exploding!!! LOL!! I know that it's going to be so hard and so much work, but know that the reward is worth it all. I hope one day soon to be commiserating with you all. I seriously tear up at the thought of babies I'm so ready for it … ummm, kind of.* LOL!


    (*I'll be referring back to the advice in these comments when the time comes!!)

  • Anonymous says:

    while i was preggo…i had absolutely no energy. my hair got washed…whenever. i'm ashamed to say that it was quite neglected, but miraculously it survived. my advice is to not beat urself up if all u feel like doing is spraying a water and oil mixture on it and puffing that thang as much as possible. ur hair will forgive u! excuse my spelling…there's a 3 month old squirming in my arms at the moment LOL

  • Jesus-in-the-city says:

    Oops…that's bimonthly blowouts, not biweekly! That would be expensive!!!

  • Jesus-in-the-city says:

    Through most of my pregnancy I did biweekly blowouts and then wrapped my hair at night. I'd usually wear it back but if I wanted something fancy I had clip in extensions from my modeling days that I would put in to spruce things up a bit, for my dear husband.

    In my 9th month, about two weeks before the birth, I got braids (extensions) and these lasted me for about two months, give or take a week. It was great because I didn't even have to think about my hair during those tough last weeks or beginning new addition to the family weeks either. I highly recommend this method!

    Just put my nearly 6 month old to bed. Congratulations! You're going to love every moment of it! God bless!

  • Danica says:

    I'm currently in my 1st trimester with my second child and i don't know what I'm going to do with my hair. This is how bad it is, I wore a twist out on Saturday, wore it in a bun Sunday. Wet it Monday in the shower and wore it in a bun, didn't detangle. Wet is and wore it in a bun Tuesday, didn't detangle. This morning I finally washed and detangled it and put it in a braid. Now I'm sitting here thinking what now.

  • Anonymous says:

    OMG, yes, pregnancy can do a number on a girly's body! That's why it took me 15 1/2 yrs before I had my 2nd and last bundle!

  • Anonymous says:

    I wish I had this article 6 months ago. But that's okay I managed. I am in my last trimester and due to pop any day now. For the first trimester it was still H-O-T outside so I could pretty much do the was and go thing to a puff to a bun. For the last two trimesters I have washed and deep conditioned weekly (although now it is like biweekly), did about 8-12 individual braids and rocked a headwrap for 2 days to a braidout to a high bun to a low bun. This past Sunday when I shampoo/DC I did some twist and pinned them into a french twist and like this it shall remain until the weekend when I retwist (dry) and repeat the style. And I agree with Latoya, we need a support group cause once we have the babies….what then.

  • Latoya says:

    This is my second winter in a row being pregnant. Last year, I had recently BC'd so I struggled with keeping a TWA looking neat. Now, I struggle with keeping all of this hair detangled. I think the key is low maintenance. Don't feel obligated to lengthy sessions. I wash every two weeks, if my scalp itches in between I ACV rinse my scalp. I try to do low maintenance styles that last a long time and try to avoid being so lazy that I allow my hair to mat. It is seriously a struggle. We need to start a support group…lol!

  • Anonymous says:

    @ DFig That is exactly my problem!! I am a wash n go chick but with the cold weather, being pregnant, and caring for a two year old I've become a "no wash and go to sleep" girl lol. I've had some terrible tangles and have been too sick to even tie my hair up at night…smh.
    Congratulations to my fellow pregnant naturals and thanks for the input!

  • Anonymous says:

    While pregnant I spent my first 2 trimesters in flat twists. Using my Saturday evenings to wash and DC overnight (pre-steamer days), flat twisting on Sunday, and being sure to spritz, and rub an oil over the twists every night. If I was feeling fancy or had a date night with the hubby, I would unravel the twist for a beautifully moisturized and well-defined flat twist-out. During my final trimester, I rotated between flat twist, and a twisted updo which usually consisted of flat twist on the sides and up the back –neatly pinned, and loose 3-strand twists in the front as a side swept bang, or styled as a pompadour. Again, washing and DC'ing weekly (or bi-weekly with the updos), and moisturizing and sealing daily. I loved it and will definitely refer back to this routine for baby #2!

  • Anonymous says:

    I am in my last trimester. Due to deliver any day now. Throughout my pregnancy I have been doing twists and mini twists. Currently I am rocking a bun on straight hair cause I flat ironed it in order to trim it before I go into labor.


  • Casimiransmom says:

    I'm currently 19 weeks pregnant with my fourth. I am a lover of all things braids, even before I went natural, I was always natural during pregnancy, because braids were just easier. Currently I have human afro kinky twists. I try to wash at least once a week, but when that doesn't work out, I just try to keep it moisturized with an aloe vera juice, rosewater and oils mixture. Spritz that every morning and night. I have a satin pillow case, so sometimes I remember the bonnet, but when I don't I'm still somewhat covered.

  • DFig says:

    This article is RIGHT ON TIME! My hair suffered through the last weeks of my 1st trimester.
    I came into work today with a matted mess of hair under a chic (if i do say so myself), wool cap. This is what happens when you fall off your wash-n-go game (it could also be because I've been falling asleep with no bonnet or nuthin'!). Pregnancy is not compatible with my beloved wash-n-gos. I think I need to try the braids or a blow out for the duration.

  • Dani @ says:

    I am currently pregnant, tired and natural! I am bunning daily because it's easy, quick, low maintenance.

    I also try to get my mom to give me two strand twists when I see her so I have a week free from any hair work to do.

    Congrats on your pregnancy!


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