As natural’s we must obtain extremely hydrated and tangle free curls to maintain the health of our hair. The detangling process can lead to over combing causing many issues. Here is a list of causes and reasons why every natural should be weary of just how much they comb their curls.
Damage To the Hair Cuticle
The hair strand is far from singular and is made up of different layers, the outer most being the cuticle layer. The cuticle layer of the hair is responsible for letting moisture in and protecting the hair from damage. The cuticle layer is made up of scale like layers that lift up to let moisture in and down to seal it in. The individual bristles of a brush can abrasively rub against the cuticle layer causing cracks and wearing the layer down. Causing the protection to thin and creating extreme damage to the hair strand and the layers inside.
If you’ve ever gotten braids before and they were too tight you’ve probably experienced sore spots and even blisters which led to hair loss. Combs can cause these same problems as well, they pull and tug on the scalp and unnaturally stretch and re stretch your curls. The twist of each curl pattern is gorgeous but is also very weak because they can twist and bend in all directions and once those areas are being tugged at they will snap off. Now advocate this happening daily and you’ll have a ton of unnecessary breakage. Combing your hair while wet will cause less breakage but won’t totally stop it from happening, the water is just a buffer for what is still occuring.
Slowed Length Retention
As naturals we love seeing new growth and the only way to keep seeing new growth is by really taking care of our hair. The simple fact is if you comb your hair everyday you will see more breakage especially at the ends. When most of us work our way through a section of hair to detangle our kinks and curls we’re combing through a jungle of hair strands that are pointed in millions of different directions. When you’re raking a comb through your hair you will be pulling at tightly wound curls and hairs that might be twisted around each other causing them to knot and then become broken apart by the teeth of your comb. Doing this everyday will take away length in several areas and cause knots to form.
The simple fact is if you’re natural and have curly or kinky hair (all of us) you shouldn’t be combing your hair everyday or even every other day. Even if you’re not visibly seeing breakage why even open yourself up to the possibility? Combing is a resourceful and time saving tool but it has it’s down sides and they are steep. If you’re a natural that loves her comb and cant detangle without it, be sure to use wide tooth combs with hard plastic teeth and finger detangle as much as you possibly can before hand!