“No, I didn’t get a haircut,” I will often say to the random people who have no idea about the nature of my afro textured hair. It shrinks. Yes. It shrinks. As the week goes and there is moisture in the air or perhaps it has rained, my hair becomes the incredibly shrinking afro.
This is not just the case for my texture, all women with any curls in their hair know exactly what I’m talking about. Notice how when the air is blow-dried out it’s longer? Exactly. A few days before this photo (as you see in the picture below) my hair was looking much longer and the strands were looking like they were laying almost flat. Well, not really, but you know what I mean.
Natural afro textured hair has very tight coily curls and when it shrinks it can look extremely shorter than when it’s stretched out. Most women with afro hair don’t wash it every single day. That would just be too much work because of what’s involved in maintaining it. Particularly when you have some length. Of course a short-cropped afro will be much easier to manage because there are no long strands of hair coiling back making it a challenge to comb out.
I generally stretch my hair out by flat-twisting or blow-drying it out. It makes the hair seem much longer and allows for more styling options. It also makes it much easier and less painful to comb.
The most important thing in caring for this hair type is moisture. Without it the hair can be brittle and extremely dry. When that happens it can have that dull, matted look and feel. There are so many options available when it comes to getting moisture. It’s best to allow a month of using a product to really know if it’s working for you. However, if a product doesn’t make your hair feel even slightly better after the first week, I usually move on and try something else.
Two recent products I have tried that are great for moisture include Nourish by Sheena’s Hair Care and Earthtones Curl Quench Hair Butter. They both have a creamy texture and provide similar benefits. The Shea Moisture does have a stronger fragrance for those who may be sensitive to scent keep that in mind.
Click the links below to check out the two products: