When Protective Hair Styles stop becoming protective


I know many people love protective styling, especially naturalistas, because it just gives us that much-needed break we need to take from fussing over our hair. However, we sometimes abuse this chance, and feel the term protective styling is synonymous to laziness.

Many people feel protective styling just means braiding with extensions, fixing weaves, flat braids, and just forgetting about the hair. If we don’t take care at times, the whole protective styling thing can just turn around and bite us in the butt, and not do any protecting of our hair at all.

So when does protective styling stop becoming protective?

1. When your extensions begin to gather build up, and form yucky stuffs at your base at the base of your hair. At this point, you pretty cannot clean or wash those things away until you remove the extensions. Just get rid of the extension along with the sentiments. For some people, this doesn’t happen till they hair has stayed for about five weeks. For some others, it starts as early as two weeks. It depends on the environment, products used, and cleaning method. Whatever happens, once it starts, loose the extensions or say bye to your hair.

2. When you keep twirling the hair, rotating the base of the braids, while still in extensions. This phenomenon is common at the front edge area of the hair. If you notice most ladies in box braids with attachment, you will see that the hair has rotated, so that it has a cylindrical shape. The continuous rotation stresses the edges, and eventually causes it to break away. When you play with your hair, whether your twists/braids are in extensions or not, you stress the hair too, and the already fragile thing just gets tired, and runs away from your head.

3. When you carry it for too long. Whatever you do, I really don’t recommend carrying protective styles for more than 10 weeks, which is too long (just my opinion), especially in a region like Africa. Don’t ruin your hair because of laziness. If you love the style so much, loose it, and remake it after a couple of days.

4. When your braids are too tiny or tight. Ha ha, many Nigerian girls are guilty of doing this injustice to their hair. Please people, tell me what is protective about a style that is guaranteed to pull your hair out.
Nigerian ladies, there's nothing protective about Ghana weaving, if you love your hairline, stay away from it, or your hair won’t be smiling after five years. If your stylist is being too stubborn and picking hair too tiny and tight, walk away! If you don’t, you hair will be do the walking away from your scalp.

5. When you begin to manipulate it anyhow, stressing the braids with extensions. When pack your hair this way today, that way tomorrow, left bun today, right bun tomorrow, updo on Friday, and flapper style on Saturday, just because you have installed very long extensions, you are asking for serious trouble. And I can assure you, you will get it when you take those extensions off.

6. When you don't moisturise, because your hair is hidden in extensions, and the extension is beautiful. What do you care most about, your hair or your extensions? Please, please, please, whatever style your hair is in, make sure it is always moisturised. Whether your hair is hidden in weaves, extensions, under your chair, or in your pot of soup, please, take care of it by moisturising. If you do not, it will dry out, and you will most likely face breakage problems when you hair gets revealed.

I hope I have been able to make you smile, but at the same time convinced and not confuse you about the fact that protective styling is not synonymous to laziness. lol


  1. Good tips!

    *where's my spray bottle now?*

  2. Good tips there; i however take exception to "there's nothing protective about Ghana weaving, if you love your hairline, stay away from it, or your hair won’t be smiling after five years".
    Yes, i am a Ghanaian. There are different styles and ways of braiding in Ghana. People who choose to braid their hair choose the style, length and width of the braids they want. I am assuming the braid type you were alluding to are micro-braids or tiny cornrolls or any style that involves the pulling of hair close to your hairline.
    It might be that the Nigerian ladies you refer to opted for those styles and they do/did have the option to tell the stylist to stop picking the hair so small or like you said "If your stylist is being too stubborn and picking hair too tiny and tight, walk away!"

    1. Hi dear, thanks for your comment. We are not trying to be rude to ghanaians. I am not sure if you understand the style we call Ghana Weaving in Nigeria

      Putting all sentiments aside, and looking at the science of hair, what Nigerians refer to as Ghana weaving is bad for the hair line. You can ask any trychologist. Ghana is one of the highest causes of Alopecia in Nigeria. The single hair strand picked in front suffers from the heavy weight of all the attachments down to even the largest part at the back.

    2. Hi Aba T,
      Its not the general style of braids in Ghana shes referring to. What you call cornrows in Ghana is what we Nigerians call Ghana weaving.
      I think the problem with it is that the hair is pulled way too tightly at the edges to get this style done.

    3. I totally understand. No hard feelings. It's just that the sentence did not give me the idea that it was a name for a type of weave in Nigeria and from your description now i can see it is the style we call in Ghana 'secret' because it is meant to give the illusion that it is the person's hair without extension.
      I do agree with the tips you gave in the post especially if it has got to do with protecting hairlines. :)

  3. Aba T, I'm not Nigerian, I'm Zambian but have been there and had ' Ghanaian weaving' done and like Ekua had said we call them 'fishtail cornrows' here , the type of weaving you are calling secret is another all together but I know what you mean we call it invisible line here, makes it look like it's your hair and not weave

  4. Lol, I didn't even know you had this post before I wrote mine up. You can change your hair in different styles when it's in braids. As long as you're careful with it and ur hair isn't dry.
    People tend to forget about their hair when it's in extensions, especially weaves, since you don't see the hair.
    Lol @ hidden in a pot of soup


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