It’s happened to the best of us: you get a fresh set of extensions, be they Ghana braids, Marley twists or faux locs. You check the mirror, excited at how fly you look, and commence the itching. That ‘keeping you up at night’ itching, that ‘furiously patting your head’ itching, that ‘using a fork to get at the skin beneath the braid’ itching. Well Ariane of BlackNaps.com has gotten to the root (pun intended!) of the issue and explains why extensions can itch so much!
Well, why is synthetic hair so itchy?
To make the hair heat resistant a coating of Akaline Lye is sprayed on the hair. So when you are burning the ends of the hair or using boiling hot water to curl the Kanekalon hair, you have the Akaline to thank. The Akaline also helps to make the product more sanitary and aids in preventing mold and other growths. Unfortunately many people’s scalps become easily irritated by this coating which is why even on the first day of getting your braids you may find it to be quite itchy.
Not to worry! Ariane goes on to suggest soaking the hair in a solution of water and apple cider vinegar prior to braiding or washing it with regular shampoo. She has an actual recipe for the water/ACV solution here.
Ladies, how do you handle itchy braids? Were you aware of the high alkalinity of braiding hair?