7 tips for natural hair care while self-quarantining and beyond

JACQUELINE LAUREAN YATES
·3 min read

When most hair salons were forced to close due to the coronavirus pandemic, more people of color started to embrace their natural hair textures.

"Lots of women were choosing natural hairstyles prior to COVID-19," trichologist, cosmetologist and DevaCurl Expert Curl Council member Dr. Kari Williams told "GMA." "Now, I think the circumstances are creating a space for women of color to continue to learn, explore and embrace the versatility of their hair."

Natural hair vlogger and founder of Naptural85, Whitney White, said an upswing in exposure to women with natural hair on different platforms has played an integral role in the number of people going natural during this time.

MORE: How Black women are embracing their natural hair during quarantine

"I believe that many women of color were under the impression that wearing their hair naturally would look odd, or wouldn't be socially acceptable because those were the messages we were receiving both directly, and indirectly, from societal norms and mainstream media," said White.

MORE: House passes bill that would make natural hair discrimination illegal nationwide

She continued, "Now that social media has helped to push the envelope on what is considered beautiful and proven that women of color are beautiful in all different hairstyles, not just straight, more women of color feel free to explore their options."

MORE: Here's how hair salons are reopening amid COVID-19

PHOTO: A woman with curly hair is seen in this stock photo. (STOCK PHOTO/Getty Images)
PHOTO: A woman with curly hair is seen in this stock photo. (STOCK PHOTO/Getty Images)

If you or someone you know is looking for natural hair tips while self-quarantining, "GMA" tapped several experts to share some of their top tips for maintaining your natural hair during this unprecedented time.

Natural hair maintenance tips, according to experts

Tip #1: Treat, treat, treat

Hairstylist, cosmetologist and CEO of Abra Kadabra Hair & Healing Abra McField emphasized the importance of conditioners.

"Choosing a hydrating conditioner, conditioning weekly and leaving your conditioner on after shampooing for at least 30 minutes with a cover and heat," she said.

McField added, "Sometimes it takes conditioner a long time to penetrate and hydrate the inside of every hair strand, so if you are just applying, detangling and then rinsing, you are more than likely, not conditioning properly."

She also said a steamer is good for natural hair because it moistens and softens it.

Tip #2: Try a protective style

Williams advised that protective styles, which are styles that keep the ends of the hair tucked away and allow for limited manipulation, are a great way to prevent breakage.

Examples of protective styles can include everything from braided extensions to low twisted buns.

"There are tons of do-it-yourself styles that can be found online," recommended Williams. "When in doubt, a wig is a great low-maintenance and stylish option."

MORE: This growing beauty brand is dedicated to creating safer hair solutions for women of color

Tip #3: Get a trim

Senior stylist and educator at Devachan Salon Dominique LyVar stresses the importance of regular trims. "Steer clear of waiting long periods of time between getting your hair cut or trimmed," he said.

PRO tip: "The longer you wait, the more time you allow for split ends to develop," he said. The more split ends you have, the more you will have to cut.

MORE: Here's how to cut your own natural hair according to experts

Tip #4:Learn your texture:

White recommends doing a lot of research. "Learn from the mistakes and successes of others, and that will help shorten your learning curve," said White.

Tip #5: Avoid sulfates, silicones and heavy oils

LyVar said avoid products packed with sulfates, heavy silicones and oils on natural hair as these types of ingredients can be drying and prevent moisture from penetrating the hair strand.

MORE: House passes bill that would make natural hair discrimination illegal nationwide

Tip #6: Set up a virtual consultation

If seeing a trained professional in person is not possible, scheduling a virtual consultation or a call with someone who is knowledgeable about natural hair is a good alternative.

Tip #7: Be patient

One of McField's biggest tips is to be patient. "Sometimes we set unrealistic expectations with our natural hair and when we don't meet those expectations, we get frustrated," she said.

McField continued, "There are ways to manipulate your hair to get it to do what you wish but sometimes naturally it won't, unless it grows significantly longer, which is why it is important to follow great tips so that you are doing the things necessary to achieve the goals you wish to achieve."

7 tips for natural hair care while self-quarantining and beyond originally appeared on goodmorningamerica.com