Well hello luvlee!!
How's it going? I sure do hope you are happy and well and energetic! I'm doing great!
Well, as the third post in this week's styling series, I thought I'd share what I've learned along the way as regards EDGES/HAIRLINES!
Okay, back to edges.
Now this is a topic that is close to my heart!! As I shared in this post here, my edges are genetically sparse. This basically means that along my hairline, I simply do not have enough hair follicles. Yep! This means that no amount of prayer, hair-growth formulas, oils or pills will thicken my edges. I just have to work with what biology gave me.
This is what I've learnt along the way:
1. Know your hairline type.
This point took me AGES to understand when I first went natural. I'd spend hours searching for methods that I could use to grow in my hairline. What I came to discover is this: different women have different types of hairlines. Some have an indented hairline - this basically means that your hair recedes backwards forming "horns". Women with these types of hairlines tend to have bigger or more prominent foreheads. As I said in this post here, I must be the chairlady of TEAM forehead!! Hihihi! Others yet have a portruding hairline - this basically means that their hair grows forwards towards their face. Have you seen women whose temple hairs seem to be extending towards their eyebrows? Well those are portruding hairlines. I've found that women with potruding hairlines tend to have thicker-looking edges.
2.Know the difference between a genetically sparse hairline and a breaking/receding hairline.
This is keeeyyy!!! As I said in this post on how to grow long hair, before you start you journey, you must examine your hair. When you look at your edges, are your hairs of different lengths? Are there bald patches? Are there very dry patches? If so, you might be suffering from a receding hairline. Receding hairlines are brought about by genetics, as well as bad hair practices. You might even have a skin condition like excema that is stunting your hair growth. If this is the case, make time to get some medical treatment.
3. How are you styling your hair?
Which brings me to the third (and most important) tip. From my experience, I've come to find that my hair does not like to be pulled back AT ALL. As in zilch. Any tagging on my hairline - using pulled back styles such as buns/braids/cornrows - leaves me with a headache. I might just have a sensitive scalp, but I also think that my hair just likes to be left alone. You might want to think back to how often you tag at your edges. Do you wear pulled back styles regularly - cornrows (includes for weaves and with extensions) or buns? Do you lay your edges down using a toothbrush and some gel? These practices might be destroying your hairline!
This is what I'd suggest you do to improve your edges/hairline:
1. Instead of bunning on the regular, do roll and tuck styles.
Scroll through for a pictorial of one of my favorite styles - the classic roll, tuck and pin. Alternatively, check out this Easter styling series here or this Valentines styling series here.
2. Instead of gels and toothbrushes (lloooll) use some castor oil and your plain ol' fingers!
Yep, the holding chemicals in gels not only have some toxic ingredients, but they are a sure way to having zero edges in the long run. Alternatively, castor oil helps thicken your hair follicles as it is a heavy sealant. Also, as type four naturals, we tend to have "popcorn edges". When we were kids we'd say that our hairline looked like the actors in the movie, "The God's Must Be Crazy". (Don't even get me started on how politically incorrect that movie is!!! Smmmhhh!) But I stopped fighting my genetics now, our natural edges are BEAUTIFUL! No need for holding gels to lay them down. Let them stand tall if they want to! ;-)
3. Give it time!
If your edges have been tortured for years, it will take time for your hair to recover and grow back in. I had patches all over my scalp during my first year of natural haircare. I had burnt my scalp with heat and chemicals so it took a whilllee before my hair grew back in.
Below is a very simple roll and tuck style that keeps the ends of my hair tucked away. Instead of using hairbands, I simply hold my hair in place with bobby-pins. This ensures that my edges are left in peace.
I truly hope that this post was helpful!
How do you take care of your edges? Do you use lots of holding gels to "slick your edges down"? What styling tips do you use to ensure that you don't over-manipulate your edges? I'd love to know!
Loooveee & lots and lotsa sunshine!!