7 (Simple) Reasons Why Your Protective Styles Don’t Grow Long Hair | EfikZara
Zara is back on CurlyNikki! She’s a fabulous naturalista who shares her natural hair journey with her followers. That includes more than 170K subscribers (aka ZeeStarz) on her EfikZara YouTube channel!
Protective styling is a BIG part of length retention for natural, textured hair – when it’s done right, that is. When not done right protective styles can actually be quite damaging to Black hair. That’s a part of the reason some naturalistas don’t put much faith in the power of protective styling in helping to grow long hair.
But, our girl Zara is different! She’s a staunch supporter of protective styling and she has her long, healthy Type 4 hair to back her up.
In this video, while rocking faux locs, she’s sharing her thoughts on why many naturals are adamant that protective styles don’t grow long hair. To prove them wrong, Zara highlights some common flaws in many a protective styling hair care regimen. Want to hear them straight from her? Great! JUMP RIGHT INTO THE VIDEO!
Or, keep on scrolling as we take a quick look at her seven points and point you in the direction of some awesome related content here on CurlyNikki.
The 7 reasons protective styles don’t seem to work
Here are the seven practices that often thwart our efforts at using protective styles for hair growth.
1. Your “protective” style is not protecting anything.
Your hair is always growing – that’s a fact. What we perceive as a lack of growth is often more likely a case of lack of length retention. As Zara explained in a recently uploaded video, we often encounter hair growth plateaus because the rate at which our hair is growing out of our scalp is being matched by the rate at which it is breaking off at the ends.
Protective styling can get you over those stunted plateaus. However, the style has to be one that protects the ends of your hair. Zara lets us in on her preferred styles to do just that.
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- Thinking of Using a Wig as A Protective Style? Here Are 7 Awesome Reasons to Go for It!
2. You’re not leaving the style in long enough.
It often takes a fair amount of work to both install and take down a protective style (yeah, microbraids we’re looking you straight in the eyeballs!). But, we go through all that effort just to wear the style for a couple of weeks. As Zara puts it, by doing so “you’re not really getting enough bang for all the effort.”
You have to manipulate your hair to do and undo the style but it doesn’t get enough time to benefit from not being manipulated while in the style.
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3. You’re not caring for your hair while in the style.
Keeping your hair clean and moisturized while it’s in the protective style is key. Zara also reminds us that ensuring your hair is clean and SUPER moisturized before getting the style is very important, too. She explains how she achieves this and how she keeps her hair healthy while protective stylin’ and profilin’.
If you’d like more details on how she does it, check out her videos on
- Hair grease
- Pre-pooing with ambunu
- Her washday routine
- What to do if you can’t (don’t) use butters and oils
- 7 Tips For Growing Out Your Natural Hair While Rocking a Protective Hair Style
- Natural Hair Care: 11 Tips to Regrow Your Hairline
- Natural Hair Care: Protecting Natural Hair Under a Wig – 12 Fantastic Tips
4. You’re not caring for your scalp while in the style.
We love the analogy of your scalp being soil from which your hair grows! It really brings home the fact that your scalp has to be fertile (healthy from plenty of nutrients) for your hair to thrive. Zara expounds on this and gives some solid advice on how to keep your scalp clean and healthy so your hair grows strong and healthy from it.
Zara implores us: “Do not take your scalp health for granted!” In the video, she reveals that her scalp is actually quite sensitive, prone to dryness, and loves being pH-balanced. Watch to find out her scalp care recommendations.
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- How to Treat Dry Scalp – 6 Simple and Effective Lifestyle Changes
5. You over-manipulate your hair to achieve the style and to take it down.
Over-manipulation is the enemy of length retention. It causes damage and breakage to fragile textured hair, leading to loss of the length you have worked so hard to retain.
- Natural Hair Styles: 11 Easy Ways to Stretch Black Hair
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6. You are not taking care of your body.
Your hair and your body will be “poppin'” if you ensure you give your body the nutrients it needs on the inside. While she is strongly in favor of getting those nutrients from real, whole foods, Zara does concede that supplementation can be helpful. Hear her thoughts on it in the video.
- Curly Haircare 101: What Nutrient Deficiency Causes Hair Loss? Quite A Few, Actually!
- 7 Foods to Avoid If You’re Trying to Grow Longer Natural Hair
- Get Biotin for Hair Growth with These 8 Yummy Recipes!
- Natural Hair Growth Supplements – 6 Helpful Points to Keep In Mind
7. You are not being positive.
Your mind, body, and spirit are all interconnected. They affect and depend on each other. Zara reminds us of the power of positive thinking and the effect it can have on the results we achieve on our natural hair journey. Positivity can help you to grow long hair. How? It will improve your attitude toward your hair and the steps you take to keep it healthy, thriving, and strong.
- How to Embrace Your Natural Hair: 26 Famous Quotes About Black Hair
- Natural Hair and an Active Lifestyle Can Coexist – Here’s How!
- Curly Haircare 101: Best Curly Hair Products for an Active Lifestyle
Now, let’s get to that video!
7 Reasons Why Your Protective Styles Don’t Grow Long Hair | EfikZara
A young woman of many talents, Zara (popularly known as EfikZara) is a professional violinist and composer. Aside from her primary career, Zara is a cinematographer with more than 17 years of experience. She is also a passionate healthy hair advocate with over 12 years of experience caring for her natural hair and the natural hair of her loved ones.
Get more hair and beauty tips from Zara on CurlyNikki, HERE!
Do you use protective styles for healthy natural hair growth? Share some of your tips with us!