Demystifying natural black hair myths

by Lynn

There are many natural black hair myths and a lot of misleading information out there that has black women thinking their hair can’t grow. Natural hair can be tedious to maintain and care for. However, there are many ways of managing human hair from low maintenance hairstyles and protective hairstyles.

Here are some of the natural black hair myths:

Natural Hair Doesn’t Grow

This is one of the most famous natural black hair myths. The assumption is that natural hair doesn’t grow. Hair length is determined by a lot of things from genetics to your hair care regimen. Natural hair shrinks in its natural state, this can be discouraging as you can’t really see your true length. However, your hair grows at least half an inch every month. Your hair might be growing but you’re not retaining the length. There are various ways you can retain your natural hair length. If you care for your hair, avoid heat on your hair, and always keep it moisturized you will be surprised at how much length you will retain.

RELATED: How to retain your natural hair length

Shampoo for cleansing

When washing your hair you don’t have to use shampoo for it to be clean, even if it’s a sulfate-free shampoo. You should consider co-washing your hair with conditioner. This will ensure your hair is not stripped of its natural oils every time you shampoo it. Always using shampoo when you cleanse your hair is one of the natural black hair myths `that’s making you not retain your natural hair length.

Natural hair is tedious to manage

Natural hair is delicate, therefore it needs a special way of care and management as opposed to straight hair. If you’re not aware of the various ways you can manage your hair in its natural state then it will be tedious for you. Research on youtube how you can manage your hair in its natural state and you’ll be surprised how easy it is to maintain your hair. Work with hairstyles that work with your hair texture.

RELATED: 15 Reasons why your hair isn’t growing and how to fix it

Natural hair needs protective styling to grow

A common misconception is that protective hairstyles automatically help grow your hair. Protective hairstyles can help your hair grow and retain its length only if properly installed and maintained. You can also go for low manipulative hairstyles and your hair will still grow. Protective styles are essential but they’re not the only option. You should have a protective style for 3 to 4 weeks utmost. If you have it for a longer period, you should wash and moisturize your hair accordingly. Protective hairstyles can lead to hair breakage and in some instances, alopecia if not well maintained.

RELATED: 10 Easy Ways To Repair Damaged Hair

Natural hair is strong

Another misconception about natural hair is that it’s strong. Of all types of hair, natural hair is the most fragile. You need to treat your hair with tender loving care for it to grow and retain length. Natural hair has much kinkier and curlier coils making it very delicate as opposed to straight hair. Low manipulation and protective hairstyles should be your go-to styles to avoid excess manipulation. This is why you should use wide-toothed combs and Denman brushes to style your hair. Also, use hair products that are specially made for natural hair.

Relaxed Hair is Easier to Manage

Natural hair does require a much more gentle touch as compared to relaxed hair. However, relaxed hair is not easier to manage. Hair requires proper maintenance for it to thrive. Relaxing your hair makes it much more delicate. It’s much more prone to breakage as it’s stretched. You would need regular treatments to ensure it’s well cared for. You would need to be careful while getting your hair wet regularly as opposed to natural hair. Relaxed hair is more prone to breakage as opposed to natural hair.

Deep Conditioner Application

The myth is that the longer you leave your deep conditioner the more effective it will be. This is a common misconception. Deep conditioners are effective for 30 minutes after that they can make your hair dry and hard. Wash out your deep conditioner after 30 minutes to avoid this.

Natural Hair isn’t versatile

A common misconception about natural hair is its versatility. Braids and wash and go’s are not the only hairstyles you can have for your hair. There are so many natural hairstyles you can work with. From twists, finger coils, crochet braids, cornrows, bantu knots and so many more. You can use extensions if you do not have long hair and you will still look amazing. There are so many ways you can experiment on your hair with different hairstyles.

Hair Shouldn’t be Washed Often

A common natural black hair myth is that dirty hair grows faster. This is not true. Your hair accumulates dirt and product build-up over time. The dirt starts clogging your hair follicles which in turn prevents hair growth. Keep your hair clean and well moisturized, this will aid in hair growth. Dirty hair might even lead to scalp issues in the long run.

Knowing Your Curl Pattern & hair porosity

A misconception about natural hair is that it is not important to know your curl pattern and hair porosity. Your curl pattern is actually very important. Natural hair is generally coilier, the tighter your coils the more moisturization you will need. Hair porosity is your hairs’ ability to absorb and retain moisture. Understanding your curl pattern and hair porosity is very important in determining which products to use for your hair.

Natural hair is expensive to maintain

If you embark on a natural hair journey, you might think the products are expensive and a lot. The cost of maintaining natural hair is the same and in some instances cheaper than maintaining relaxed hair.

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