One of the most important steps in maintaining healthy natural hair is ensuring that your hair remains well moisturized. It may therefore seem a bit strange that I will be sharing a method of preserving a style that provides the very opposite advice. To be clear, washing and moisturizing your hair ought to be a part of your weekly regimen the majority of the time. Moreover, if your hair readily breaks or shows signs of damage after an extended time of not washing it then I suggest you not heed this advice. This is a method I implement one or two months out of the year after watching a few vloggers and weighing the pros and cons of washing my hair when wearing certain hair styles.
I very much enjoy wearing mini twists. Nowadays I don’t wear them as often as I once did because they take quite a while to complete at my current length. When my hair was shorter, however, I could finish 80 to 100 small twists in about 2–3 hours. Because the style didn’t take an excessive amount of time to complete I had no problem taking them out and washing my hair after two weeks. A year after actively growing my hair out it was around bra strap length and twists took about 7 hours to complete, causing me to reconsider taking them out after only 2 weeks. In my search on Youtube I identified other naturals who wore mini-twists and chose not to wash their hair while wearing twists. Primarily because washing twists can make taking them out a major hassle. I knew this from firsthand experience. When I twisted my hair 10 months into my healthy hair journey I decided to wear them longer than my usual 2 weeks and keep them in for an entire month. I styled them, washed them and stretched them. When it was time to take them down I realized that my hair was matted, tangled and an overall knotted mess. Detangling, to say the least, was quite an experience. You can imagine, then, why I was willing to consider wearing the style without washing if it meant reducing tangles.
The first time I tried this method was during the summer, so I had to contend with perspiration in addition to buildup. To clean my scalp I used a mild astringent about twice a week beginning about a week after I started wearing twists. I simply applied the astringent or witch hazel to a cotton ball and gently dabbed between the parts of my hair. When I heard this advice I was initially skeptical but I was quite surprised at how well it removed buildup. In addition to removing buildup from my scalp I also moisturized my hair regularly, paying close attention to the ends of my hair. It is important to use a light moisturizer since you will need to use it 2 to 3 times a week. I would also lightly mist my hair with water and braid the twists into about 4 to 6 larger twists. This will create a cute wavy style while allowing me to moisturize my hair without creating too much frizz.
In this video vlogger KinkyKurlyQueen discusses why she doesn’t wash her twist (you can skip to 2:30).
I’ll admit that going 4 consecutive weeks without washing your hair isn’t for everyone. If you have a scalp condition that requires regular washing and/or medication please do not forgo your wellbeing for a style. However, this is something that you might consider if you find that your hair gets tangled if washed and you like to occasionally wear a style for longer than 2 weeks.
What methods have you use to maintain hair health when extending your time between washes?