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HANDLING AFRO CURLY HAIR FOR KIDS

For decades, it was thought that afro-curly hair was a problem, and many people, people of colour included, believed this, seeing afro-textured hair as a problem. Thank goodness there has been a healthy shift in our collective thought process.

Many of us have learnt — and are still learning about our afro hair. We are embracing the hair that grows out of our scalps and teaching our children to do the same.


Our hair speaks to our past, present, and future in many, many ways. How we care for our afro-curly hair and that of the kids in our lives allows us (and them) to stand tall and wear their afro-curly hair with grace.


Here is how to handle afro curly hair for that child in your life so that they grow up loving their hair the way they should:


Tell your child their hair is beautiful

Begin this when they are young and do this often. If you nurture their love for their hair from an early age, they will naturally love their afro-curly hair.


Consider their hair type

Don’t copy other people’s hair routines for that child because we are all unique. Consider these factors when trying to find the perfect hair care regimen for them: thickness, porosity, and density. Sometimes, trial and error is the best way to get to that perfect routine. You may want to try something for a little while, and if it isn’t working, make a tweak. Experimenting and adjusting is very important in finding the perfect routine.


Don’t make the hair care routine complicated

Adopting a complicated hair care routine is most times not necessar, and breeds the erroneous belief that afro hair is hard to maintain. Instead, adopt a simple hair care routine that your child can get used to.


Use the proper hair tools

Never yank that child’s hair into submission with a fine-toothed comb, so they never associate hair care with pain. Make sure to use the right hair care tools for your child.


Use the right products

Products can make hair easier to handle or harder to. So, make sure you use products that positively affect how the hair behaves and feels.


Detangle

Prevent unnecessary breakage, matting, dryness and hair loss, by detangling correctly. Use a wide-toothed comb (your fingers even), and work this through the ends of your child’s hair. As much as possible, detangle when the hair is damp.


Use a sulfate free shampoo

If you can, ditch regular shampoos for a sulfate-free shampoo. You can also use a conditioner to wash your child’s hair, as a light conditioner sufficiently cleanses the hair and also leaves it softer.


Hydrate and Moisturise

Afro-curly hair tends to be a little drier than other hair types, so teach your child to hydrate and moisturise their hair very early on. Even before they know the importance, talk to them as you hydrate and moisturise their afro-curly hair. Early but simple education is important for self-love and success.


Don’t over-manipulate the hair

It is important to style your child’s hair safely, so your child does not associate afro hair with pain. Avoid hairstyles that are too tightly done or take forever to install.


If it works, stick with it

Once you begin a new hair care routine, take a little time to watch if the new routine works and leads to a healthier head of hair. If it works, stick to it. Nothing pays like consistency if you are doing the right thing, so by all means, stick to it.


Be consistent

It doesn’t matter who is styling your child’s hair. Ensure that such a person knows and sticks to your hair care rules. Make it very explicit how you want your child’s hair to be handled.


Conclusion

Afro-curly hair should never be associated with stress or pain. Giving your child a happy, healthy hair care experience is important. Begin today with an easy, pain-free hair care routine, and don’t forget to tell your child they are valuable and worthy of respect.


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