By Alexa Santory
I’m sure we’ve all heard someone say “I need to lay my edges” or “your hair is laid!!” or “don’t look at my kitchen!!” At least I have. The hair line is as precious and delicate as the rest of your hair and we often neglect it for the sake of styling. Baby hairs or edges are usually the first things to wear out with consistent manipulation and the kitchen, if you have any level of curl pattern, is an extremely rebellious section of the hair in the back that requires a certain level of care and attention. Today’s Beauty School lesson is all about the hairline -- edges and kitchens and how to care for both.
Where, Oh Where Are My Edges?!
Edges, baby hairs, wisps...whatever you call them, we all have them. Some more so than others. These are the small, delicate little hairs that reside on your hairline that usually won’t stay put without some otherworldly force trying to keep them there. Growing up, I was queen of baby hairs that stood on end. My mom would relax my hair in an attempt to get them all to stay put, but they’d pop right back up after a few weeks. Consistently relaxing my hair every few months from age 6 to 16, resulted in an overall LACK of what would be considered edges, and they’re only just starting to show signs of life again….I’m 24. Because these hairs are so thin and delicate, they are most prone to thinning and hair loss. Tension from hairstyles, chemical treatments or heat styling, lack of moisture, and lack of oxygen to the hairline (if you wear wigs or weave) all have adverse effects on the hairline over time. Thinning can also be hereditary, but for all intents and purposes, restoring and repairing your edges comes with time, patience, and practicing better hair habits.
(Don’t) Snatch Your Edges...Again
I know Beyonce dropped another surprise album and your edges are probably gone again but don’t fret!! We can help you get them back with some simple changes to your routine that’ll make a world of a difference over time!
Massage your scalp. We’ve talked about this...happy scalp equals happy hair. Massaging the scalp helps stimulate blood flow and helps increase the amount of nutrients and oxygen going into the hair follicles, which helps stimulate hair growth. Getting into the habit of massaging the scalp is great on its own, but try taking it to the next level by massaging oils into the scalp and hair. Massaging any thinning areas with scalp stimulating oils, like grapeseed, rosemary, or peppermint, will help increase circulation to the scalp, reduce inflammation, repair damage, and create a healthier environment for the hair to grow.
Switch to more natural products, especially on the hairline. These are going to give you the best of the best nutrients and vitamins that your hair has been so desperately missing. Since edges and baby hairs are naturally more delicate than the rest of the hair, they need to be treated as such. Give your hairline what it needs by incorporating more natural and holistic products and cutting out harsh chemicals, like hair gels with alcohol.
Wrap your hair and sleep on satin. Satin scarves and satin pillowcases are a ~luxurious~ way to keep not just your edges, but all of your hair, soft and healthy. Cotton pillowcases suck the moisture right out of the hair and can create breakage. Treat your edges with a satin scarf to keep them soft and in check.
Avoid tight hairstyles or certain protective styles. I love a chic, slicked back style as much as the next person. But unfortunately, the tighter the style, the more tension it’s putting on your hairline. Remember, your edges are delicate, so avoiding super tight hairstyles can help restore them!
Chill on the edge control!! I know, crazy right? Try to avoid regular use of thick pomades and gels around your hairline. They can be pretty drying. Lessen your use of brushes too, since those can cause breakage.
Chizi Duru has some tips on growing back damaged edges!
Let’s Talk Kitchens
If you’re a part of the Black community, you know the word “kitchen” means more than just the place where we cook. It’s also the nickname for the hair at the nape of the neck, which is often the kinkiest and most resistant part of the hair. It’s really difficult to care for and tends to be prone to breakage. The hairs back there are also much shorter, which means everything rubs against them, creating really intense knots. There’s also a stigma attached to kinkier hair in general, and women sometimes feel insecure about their kitchen because of it.
Some Tips For a Healthy Kitchen
- Maintenance for the kitchen is similar that of the rest of your hair — moisture, moisture, and more moisture. When doing your moisture routine, try giving your kitchen a bit more TLC. Add extra water and moisturizer of your choice, and don't forget to seal with an oil!
- Also, detangling. Don't forget to detangle your kitchen, this will help keep the knots away and foster healthy growth.
- Adopting products that add slip to the hair will make detangling and softening the area a breeze. We just dropped an amazing detangler as a part of our #DearBlackGirl 4C Hair Kit called Cairo, and it has a ton of ingredients that add intense slip to the hair, as well as moisture and shine.
So if you're worried about the state of the hair at the nape of your neck, or your edges, they can be maintained and kept healthy. Keep these tips in mind when doing your hair and watch the transformation.
The Streets Are Talking
Make detangling a breeze with Cairo, slip on 100!
"Definitely a keeper for me. I learned that I get better detangling after letting the Cairo sit for a few moments to soften my tangles. My hair is so soft even on days two and three!! Highly recommend."
Try putting some butter on your hairline at night or before you do your hair for extra moisture!
"My hair absolutely loves this butter! I use it on both wet and dry hair, and I use it every night to retwist my strands. My hair shines everyday, all day on freshly washed hair to two week old twist outs!!! I can't imagine not having this butter, and will stock up as soon as it becomes available. It's light enough for daily use but thick enough to retain moisture, not greasy at all. I am absolutely in love with this butter!"
Saturday we look at real ways to retain length, stay tuned!