Don’t brush or comb
I have seen the healthiest and longest napes on women who use no styling tools at all. This is probably due to the fact that the tools we use to smooth out our hairlines and detangle can create unnecessary stress on nape hair that is usually finer and weaker than the rest of our hair.
For detangling, use nature’s gentlest and best detangler — your hands. Also, when trying to lay down your edges for styles like ponytails and buns, use your hands to apply gel to your hairline and smooth it out. Then grab your satin or silk scarf and use it to wrap your hair. The gentleness of your hands will prevent breakage, while the hair tie will help your hair to dry nice and smooth.
Be mindful of your clothes
Your nape is the area of your hair most susceptible to damage from your clothes. The fibers your clothes are made out of can easily trap your nape hair, and every time you move your head, your strands can be pulled and tugged, which will eventually break them.
Preventing this damage is very easy. All it requires is being mindful of the clothes you wear. Try to avoid cowl neck tops, turtlenecks and shirts that rub against your nape. Also, if you wear decorative scarves, avoid thick wooly ones that easily trap hair.
Turn down the heat when flat ironing or blowdrying your nape.
When applying chemicals to the hair, be mindful of the fact that some areas are weaker than others and more susceptible to breakage.
If your nape is sensitive, separate it from the rest of your hair and apply chemicals like texturizers and Brazilian keratin treatments to it last to prevent overprocessing. If possible, also avoid applying chemical to that area altogether.
Avoid securing your ponytails tightly as it puts tension on the nape of the hair which can lead to breakage.
Leave it out
In order to protect your nape hair from further damage and allow it to grow, consider protective styling. This may seem silly, but allowing your nape hair to avoid the rigors of styling will allow it to strengthen and grow.
To do this you could separate your nape hair, moisturize it thoroughly then cornrow it horizontally. The cornrow should be left in for as long as possible and should only be released to wash the hair or remoisturize it.
If you want to wear a style like a bun or updo, simply incorporate the end of the cornrow into the style, but do not undo it. For those who can not cornrow, individual braids and twists will work just as well.
Cover up at night
Always cover your hair at night with a silk or satin covering when you sleep to prevent damage from friction and dryness. Also, consider wearing a bonnet if scarves create too much friction on your nape. If your bonnet has an elastic enclosure, be sure it’s pulled down past your edges to avoid friction.
Moisturize your nape hair more than the rest of your hair. If needed, moisturize it daily or twice daily to prevent breakage due to dryness.
Massage with oil
Massage your scalp with castor oil as many curlies have claimed that it has helped to stimulating growth in damaged areas.