You all know by now that if you have 4C hair you got to find the best protective styles for your 4C Natural Hair if you want your hair to thrive with time. Most, protective styles help you take care of your 4C natural hair because of the many benefits I have highlighted below.
Protective styles protect your natural hair from adverse environmental factors
Wearing a protective style on natural hair helps protect your hair from adverse environmental factors. These can be excessive heat or extremely cold weather conditions. Besides, protective styles prevent breakage hence helping retain your hair length.
Protective styles help retain your natural hair length
Most importantly, wearing a protective style means less manipulation to your hair and therefore less breakage. This helps retain your hair length.
Protective styles are low maintenance
A protective style is a high maintenance when you are installing it, but after that, it becomes low maintenance. Take for example braids, you won’t have to figure out a style for your hair every time you want to step out.
Protective hairstyles help maintain moisture in your hair
Depending on the time of the year and your geographical location, the weather affects the amount of moisture your hair retains. So, wearing a protective style on your 4C natural hair helps prevent tangles, dryness, or breakage.
As I mention a couple of times in this blog, 4C natural hair has the tightest curls and that prevents even distribution of the sebum, the hair’s natural oil. This is the reason why you need to keep moisturizing your 4C hair and find ways to help it retain moisture.
In this post, I’m going to share with you some of the best protective styles that I have been wearing over the years. Some of the styles I wore as I transitioned my hair from relaxed to being natural. Also, after transitioning to a full natural.
To say that I love braids is an understatement. This is one of the most common protective styles for natural hair. I mean, which naturalist doesn’t love taking that long break with braids. In the month of November, I wore braids for the entire month, and I loved the experience. In addition, they were knotless braids which mean no pain at all.
I dread the days when you will have your hair braided and the next few couples of days would be a nightmare because your entire head was sore.
Not to mention, braids come in a variety of colors, and we are all at liberty to choose the color that speaks to our inner soul and taste.
What I appreciate about this protective hairstyle is the lightness of the hair. This hair, however, doesn’t need a lot of styling and manipulation once installed because of its lightness. That’s from my experience. But this depends on the texture of your hair I have coarse hair.
In my previous post, I mentioned that 4C hair can also be fine in texture. So, if you are looking for something that’s very light on your natural hair as a protective style, this is your ideal protective style. This hairstyle can last for about one to two months. You may use 2 to three packs depending on hair density and the size of the twists you are going for.
Nubian twists also come in amazing colors. The one I’m wearing is 1-900.
Kinky twists -protective styles for your 4C natural hair
If you are looking for a protective hairstyle that can last you ages, this is it. Afro kinky or afro fluffy they are called, are idyllic for this. I loved wearing this hairstyle during my transition period from permed hair.
The beauty about kinky braids is that the older the hair becomes, the better it looks. Although don’t be tempted to stay longer with the hair because of this.
It also comes it very many colors and the one I’m wearing is 1-900. This is my perfect type of color.
One thing I would caution you about this hairstyle is that you need to get someone who knows how to install it without damaging your hair or edges. The hair is very coarse-textured and if tightly braided along with your hairstyle, chances of losing hair are high.
Twist outs using your own natural hair
I do my own twists-outs on my 4C natural hair. This is one of the hairstyles you can do on your own from the comfort of your home.
All you need is;
- clean well-detangled hair,
- a styling lock gel (optional),
- a good cream or conditioner to moisturize,
- detangling brush, but I prefer to finger detangle to avoid lots of breakages
- a spritz bottle to mist your hair strands, and
- oil, for example, coconut oil, olive oil, or castor oil.
Weaves as protective styles for your 4C natural hair
There is debate among my friends, on long one should stay with a weave. Is it 2 weeks, a month, two months? Two months is quite a long right. I would stay that long with a weave on my head. My scalp would be probably itching to death, okay, slightly exaggerated.
Depending on the type of scalp you have, that is, is your scalp prone to lots of itching or dandruff or none of the two at all? The main reason I went natural was because of excessive dandruff I had on my scalp when I relaxed my hair and depended on the hairstylists like God to do my hair for me.
My take is that anything between 2 weeks, 3 weeks, and at most 4 weeks is okay. Beyond four weeks is detrimental to your hair especially with 4C natural hair.
Weaves are a very ideal protective style for natural hair because your hair is neatly cornrowed, and the weave is sewn to cover all that. This protects your hair from harsh weather conditions, from manipulation and your hair also retains moisture.