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Curly Nikki

Day Care Hair…

By January 27th, 202141 Comments

Day Care Hair...
Jean asks:

Every morning I spend 30 minutes (sometimes more), twisting or braiding my 2 year old’s hair. I gently detangle it, moisturize it, oil it and put it up out of the way so that it’s neat and adorable. The problem is, when I pick her up from daycare, it’s a frizz ball. A total, tangled mess. I have no idea what happens during the hours that I’m gone, but is there anyway to prevent this?

CN adds:
Also, how do you wrangle said child in order to do her hair in the first place? Short of using my thighs like a vice and piling up a million toys around her to keep her occupied, I’m at a loss! I can barely braid, and things get real messy when Gia’s wiggling around like a worm on red bull.


  • Anonymous says:

    LOL @ January 19, 2012 @ 12:41pm!

  • Alexis and Derek says:

    Also to add – this style typically lasts all week with morning maintenance to slick down edges and rebraiding ponytails at night.

  • Alexis and Derek says:

    My daughter's hair is 3b in the fronts and borderline 4a/4b in the back. Daycare hair was the biggest challenge for me once her hair was long enough to put in a ponytail but too short for any type of sensible braid. When I would pick her up I would almost be in tears looking at how unmanaged her hair looked. She is now 2 1/2 almost 3 and I've found the only way to make her hair stay in some sort of style throughout the day is DAX. Hahah!!! I say that and laugh because I was totally against using products that were not 100% natural until my mother had a sit down talk with me about what she use to do with my hair.

    Our go-to styles now consist of one or two cornrows across the front like a headband (which helps me not to pull her edges too tight), then behind that you'll find two or three ponytails (braided or braid-outs) – two on either side of her head and one directly in the back typically braided because I find this is the area that gets the most damage from nap time and the carseat.

  • Anonymous says:

    I have a boy and his hair is now over twelve inches long. In day care about six inches. Found out the teachers were taking it down and combing it because it was soft and curly. Even in first grad people are still playing in his hair. Your work may be sufficient and people are touching her hair throughout the day.

  • Norma says:

    My daughter has fine curly/wavy hair. I have fine/kinky hair. I thought the solution to keeping her hair tame was oil. It took me 3 precious years to figure out that her hair wanted some leave-in conditioner and water to set those braids in. I usually redo them every morning, but she is much more presentable after school than the halo/frizz that use to greet me every afternoon when I picked her up from preschool.

  • KikiBrown says:

    Thanks for the tip on Nadine@Girls Love Your Curls! I watched several of her videos on YouTube today. She is so beautiful and loving in the way she explains things. I so needed this because I have no idea whT to do with my child's hair. I'm still trying to figure out what to do with mine. Lol! So tonight I gave up my standard box braids and did a two strand twist into Bantu knots. Not sure if it'll stay as well but she sure looks darling!

  • Shanna says:

    We do too much with our kid's hair. It goes back to the your hair looks "unkempt" argument that was big in the natural hair community a while back. Kids play rough. They don't care about their hair so it gets messed up.

    I am a hot yoga teacher and just from the heat, helping my students and demoing all over the floor, my hair looks like a train wreck when I get home and I actually do care about how I look during the day. Even much a carefree child who plays and has fun.

    With kids, keep it simple. Find a staple hair style that gets their hair out of the way and leave them alone.

    As far as Gia, she is a baby. Let her wear an afro and be done with it. Slap some type of light curling product or moisturizing cream on it and be done with. 5 minutes tops.

  • Anonymous says:

    LOL. Children play hard; I know I did. My mother use to do my hair all cute and things and by the middle of the day, my bang was laid all sideways…LOL. It's just part of being a kid

  • Anonymous says:

    My 2 year old is an outdoorsy child so what i do whenever i want to make her hair is take her out so she can run around and play to her heart's content. Couple hours later, we are back home, fed, bath time – warm bath, hair washed and conditioned ( she loves the conditioner – no idea why!!!).
    By the time we are out of the bath, it's all she ca do to stay awake. By the time she's in PJ's, it's off to la-la land.
    That's the only way i can get her hair done weekly in box twists at one sitting.
    As for the frizz, heck, she's just 2. In between the food in hair, juice in hair, sand in hair sagas i think frizzy is low on my list.

  • Kandyapple says:

    Am I the only one thinking frizz is not the end of the world. My son had long hair (we went to it with scissor so we just cut it al of), and I would braid his hair maybe once every week or two weeks. He goes to daycare, and he likes to play and roll on the floor and ground, and throws caution to the wind. He's three years old, so that is expected right? If his hair gets frizzy, then it gets frizzy.

    I will cosign on what others have said though and that is cornrows are your friends and the smaller the braids, the better, as far as getting more bang for your buck. I just could not imagining doing my child's hair every single morning, just to combat frizz.

  • Quiana says:

    Just at around 2 years old did my daughter decide that she was tenderheaded. I can't blame her though, as I was ridiculously tenderheaded as a child or so my family says. We do box twists and other styles that she wears for a week to two weeks, and she sleeps with a bonnet. She is 3.5 now and her hair is past shoulder length stretched.

  • Izoela says:

    I started braiding my daugthers hair at almost 2. Up until then she was pretty much bald. I used nap time/bedtime as the distraction. I would make sure she was fed and cleaned and lay her in my lap. This was best then. Now at 3 (turning 4 next month) We call it our spa day. I normally start late in the evening with a bath (where I wash and detangle)and then her nails. She has 4a curls so to give it some length I blow dry on medium and cool. It also helps with the longevity of her style.

  • Laxmi from says:

    I think, for us mommas with girls, it's just something we have to accept until they are a little bit older, say out of kindergaten- that the hair will always look a hot mess almost everyday,lol.I can only do one ponytail on my almost 2 year old and so I just accept that I have to do her hair pretty much everyday because she's still too young to sit still for too long. My almost for year old only wants a low ponytail "like Melody in 'The little Mermaid 2'" and then she'd twirl her hair around so much that I would have to cut dread locks out of her hair. I can't corn row so I recently started putting in 6-8 box braids which I pull back in a low pony tail and she loves it. ( )
    This means I only have to re-do her hair every 3-4 days before I can't stand the frizz anymore and I'm grateful for that, because doing her hair every morning before going to school was getting be a real pain (and too much manipulation in my opinion. She watches cartoons or plays with my iphone/ipad whenher hair is being done. Both girls don't sleep with scarves or bonnets because they don't like them and a silk pillow case is no use because they are both 'wild sleepers', just all over the place, hehe, so I'll wait till age 5 or 6 before I introduce the hair covering.

  • Berthia D says:

    @Nikki. Lol thats a hard one. I was going to say bribe her with cookies or other yummy treats but she might be too young for that to work lol

  • Daphne74 says:

    Since my daughter has gotten out of the toddler age – she's 6 (1/2 she keeps reminding me) I have been relying on cornrows once a month. I take her to the local hair school where they are very gentle and will wash her hair with the shampoo I bring in. As long as I bring her plenty to do and keep her occupied she will sit still. I can cornrow, but my skills are not up to salon standards at all, but I'm learning. When she was little I didn't do much to it at all I just let her wear a TWA and her hair didn't really get to a point where it had to be "tamed" until she was about 4. I will wash and do a simple style after about two weeks and then back to cornrows. I can't tell you how many "discussions" her father and I have had about her hair, but we are getting there. I check out the channel Girls love your curls too.

  • Anonymous says:

    a worm on red bull—love it! High chair suggestion is a good one.

  • Anonymous says:

    This beauuuuuutiful lady has a wonderful series of tutorial for wrangling little girls' hair!

    Nadine @ Girls love your curls

  • ThisOwl says:

    Oh I forgot to mention this but as everyone already stated it is very important to protect the hair at night or while she's around the house playing with a satin cap/bonnet and or a satin pillow case while she sleeps because this will help to preserve the style. Keeping it fresh and neat looking for a while.

  • Necee says:

    Braids and Twists are the best!!!!! I know everyone had said it already but they are!!!

  • Anonymous says:

    My saving grace has been twists and braids. It takes hours just to wash, detangle, moisturize, etc., so I need a style that I don't have to touch for at least a week. I'm not a great braider but I have gotten better. The trick for me and my three year old self-proclaimed princess (I second the motion – clears throat), is to style in sections and to let her get up and walk around or whatever for 3 or 4 minutes. We do this a couple of times. It gives her a break and eases my frustrations of trying to get her to sit still. She knows a break is coming so she comes back and sits until the next one.

  • Mrs. G says:

    I've started two strand twisting my 2 year-old's hair.. I leave it like that for a week, add some pony-tails or big barrettes from Crazy 8. I'll spray some moisturizer or Baby Buttercreme on it to add shine and keep it moving. Sometimes we'll have a friend braid it and add beads and that lasts about 2 weeks. This week, I did a two strand twist bang and two afro puff ponytails.. we cover it up at night and wa-la!

    @Nikki– not sure if you let Gia watch TV but we put on Nick Jr. or a Dora DVD to keep her sitting still.. it usually works. Now, it does take a little longer but it works for the most part.

  • Anonymous says:

    How do you wrangle a child? Well, if she can still fit in her highchair, place her in there while you do her hair. You can put her in her highchair in front of her fav TV program and also place some combs and hair accessories in front of her to play with. That should give you a good 40mins to an hour to do whatever you need to do to her hair before she wants to get out.

    Spending 30 minutes on your daughter's hair every morning? I would be doing the same thing if I had not adopted this time saving routine for my 5 year old daughter. Once a week, preferably on the weekend, wash and deep condition your daughter's hair. While still damp apply a leave-in conditioner and/or water-based creme styler. Style her hair in box braids (part box-shaped sections of hair and braid), cornrows or twists. Seal with oil or hair butter. I recommend Mizani Supreme oil and Jane Carter's Nourish & Shine Mango and Shea Butter. These styles can last a week or more if your daughter sleeps on a satin pillow case or you place a stain cap or bonnet on her hair at bedtime. You can apply the same moisturizing creme and oil or butter to the braids, cornrows or twists throughout the week. This will literally reduce your daily morning hair routine to 10 minutes tops!


  • Kingsmomma says:

    I watched a woman yell at her daughter to the point where she was physically threatening her because her hair was not exactly how it looked when she dropped her off. The girl couldn't have been older than 5.

    At that age they have nap time and play time and not to mention hand in hair. Do braids to try and eliminate the messiness but at this stage there isn't much you can do. Your child's teacher is not going to tie your child's bonnet on for you and even if they can go it themselves they will get laughed at. Trust me. Teach them the importance of not messing in their hair and definitely about not having others touch their hair but there isn't much you can do.

    I started out doing my sons hair in his sleep and started to do it around bed time. Now he doesn't care he'll sit down And let me do it.

    I'm currently braiding another girls hair and training her to sit still is annoying.

  • Anonymous says:

    My niece was four months when we first combed her thick, kinky coily afro. We had to wait until the child was in a deep sleep otherwise it was a no go!!!!

  • Mrs. S. Allen says:

    Braids, braids, beads and more braids….That's the only way I can get my 2 year old ready and out of the house on time. I use Carols Daughter Hair Honey and cornrow her hair. It last about 2 weeks at a time. On the weekends I may occasionally let her wear ponytails. To get her to stay still I have the t.v. on NickJr or let her play with my iPad. That's the only way she will sit for awhile. The braids last two weeks because she sleeps on a satin pillowcase. She loves her satin pillowcase.

  • janubie says:

    Cornrows, cornrows, cornrows. My 4 yo stepdaughter stays in cornrows and beads. Though she likes to pop the beads off whenever she can, that doesn't really do much to ruin the style. It takes a long time to do it but it saves time during the week.

    @Nikki, try it when she is sleep. This may be best until she gets old enough to understand that she needs to sit still (even then it'll probably take repeated warnings lol)

  • ThisOwl says:

    Depending on the thickness and texture you can do two strand twist and hopefully it can last for at least 2 weeks. But small-medium sized box braids will last even longer especially if you braid them tight(not tight at the root but through out the length of braid itself). You can do them on damp or dried hair using a good styling product like a thick butter or gel to preserve the style. These styles are so versatile you can do so much with them. Wear them out with a cute bow or head band, up in a pony tail or two, side bun, the options are endless. Check out BlessedCurlyGurlz, and naptural85 and on youtube and you will see the many styles that can be done on 2-strand twist or box braids. But if you dont have the time or patience to do small twist or braids medium sized braids will do the trick.

  • ThisOwl says:

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi everyone, I have a 22 month old daugther and I work on her hair once or twice a week at night before bed after she's had a bath and she is usually ready to wind down and she will sit right in front of me and let me cornrow or put her hair in small pony tails or twists. Sometimes I am lucky and she will voluntarily sit in front of me to have her hair done after watching me do her 7 yr old sisters hair. She is still a wiggle worm though, she will play with toys and move around at her leisure, I just do the best I can. At other times she just won't allow it and I try again later. If I need to touch up or add moisturizers, it is done at night also. Last night she took me by surprise as I started to do my older daugthers hair and she just sat down and demanded I do her hair instead, so I did. She's something I tell you! It took a while for her to get to this point, but I am sure it was because she watched my 7 yr old daughter.

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  • says:

    Here at my home daycare, kids love to play in eachother's hair. We tell them to play with the toys, but they are kids. They love to explore, and they notice when someone has something different from them. When I have my fro out they love playing in my hair. I won't even mention how they love to ruff-house. Its just kids being kids. 😉

  • Anonymous says:

    This is just what I need! I have a little wiggle worm too!!!

  • Anonymous says:

    I have two year old daughter that is also in preschool/daycare all day. I use to spend 30 minutes every morning putting her hair into cute ponytails and realized it was too much for her and her hair. Now, on Sundays, I put her hair into about 12 box braids, usuing a spray bottle of water and miss jessies baby butter. I twist the ends around my fingers and add baby butter to her edges every few days. The great thing about box braids is you can still pull them into one ponytail or a few. Hope this helps.

  • CurlyInTheA says:

    LOL, @PecanCurls. My now 14-year old son lopped off half a braid on each of my two girls' (now tweens) braids when they were toddlers. Still haven't quite forgivven him for that one, lol!

    My girls are older now, but when they were that age, doing their hair was a chore. And they were tenderheaded. And conditioner combing back then (10+ years ago) was unheard of. And they were typical, wiggly toddlers.

    The only thing helped was popping in a (video) –was along time ago, LOL — or my son entertained them by putting on a "show" while I did their hair.

    If I had it to do all over again today, I would just braid my girls' hair and call it a day. You know how day care always tells you to dress your kids in "play" clothes?

    Same thing with the hair. While I know intricate styles are beautiful, they may be a waste of time at your daughter's age.

    Braided hair is a good protective style that can withstand most of what your daughter is doing in daycare and you won't have to manipulate it daily.

    If you want to get fancy with it, you could always do some ornate braidwork.Check out:

    Good luck!

  • Pecancurls says:

    Jean, I am a mom of two boys, but I just think that most kids — particularly at that age– just love to throw caution to the wind and play really hard (sometimes that may include rolling around on the floor, playing in their hair, etc…) (My friend's daughter and her little friend decided to give each other hair cuts with the kiddie scissors one day….one missing braid later….) Even my boys (short hair cuts) inevitably came home from day care looking disheveled. How many pieces of mulch can one get inside a little pair of sneakers? 🙂 I just clean them up and hoped for the best the next day. If the braids are ending up the same way at the end of the day sounds like you might have to grin and bear it at least until she gets a little older maybe.

  • Miche'al says:

    I have to keep giving my daughter everything under the sun to do her hair. My daughter is in kindergarten and she still comes home looking a hot mess. My daughter knows no one is to touch her hair, but I know her teacher lets her play in it. My daughter likes to restyle and restyle during the day. She comes home with barretts missing and all.

  • LV of Natural-ness says:

    @Nikki, I used to be forced to comb my daughter's hair while she was in the bathtub with plenty of toys. It was the ONLY way to get her to sit still long enough.

  • Brittany says:

    For me I keep my 3 year old daughter's hair in braids, twist, and beads! Usually for 2-3weeks the the remaining time I let her wear a pony tail or twist out style but only for about few days likethe weekend when I can monitor it and keep it neat. As far as getting her to sit still it takes me about a few hours to wash, condition, and style so I watch a LOT of nick Jr's Yo Gabba Gabba and Tangled over and over and over and over again lol!

  • Anonymous says:

    Put beads at the end of the braids.

  • ShoeHOTLINE says:

    @Jean every little girls love to play in there hair. Heck even some of us have HIH syndrome so would suggest braiding her hair in cute little styles.

    @Nikki have you tried to do Gia hair while she is sleep? That always seemed to work for my mom.

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