There are a lot of reasons to wear your curls in braids. Braids are great for protective styling, help keep curls moisturized, and managed during bad weather. However, you need to know what to do after taking down braids. Here are some tips to make sure your curls stay healthy when the braids come out.
What To Do After Taking Down Braids
Once braids come out, you'll need to gently use your fingers to detangle any lingering knots. While you must usually take a comb or a brush to those pesky snarls, try to avoid doing this when possible. Brushes can disrupt your natural curl pattern and create frizz. Combs don't allow you to individually feel each knot, which can lead to tearing. Make sure to include your roots in this detangling, and massage your scalp to break up any build up.
If you've been wearing your curls in a protective style for several weeks, odds are your scalp hasn't seen much love. While you'll definitely want to shampoo your curls, you'll also need to clarify your scalp. You can either select a clarifying shampoo to purchase or use apple cider vinegar to help break up any residue.
It's most likely been weeks since your curls were able to be individually moisturized, and they are probably desperate for some loving. After your clarifying treatment, don't forget to show your strands some loving. Treat them to a deep conditioning treatment. This will help moisturize strands and restore hydration. Slather up your strands and cover with a plastic shower cap, then wrap your head in a towel to allow the heat from your head to penetrate each strand.
It's time to schedule a trim if you haven't already done so. Getting rid of dead ends or frizz will help keep curls looking great, especially after weeks in braids.
Give your curls some time to rest before putting them back into a protective style. Your strands and scalp need to recover from the weeks of being tightly constricted. Allow your curls at least two weeks of freedom before tying them back up again.
Learn more about taking care of your curls here.