All textures are not meant to be treated equal. What I mean by this is….you can’t do the same things to a Type 3 texture that you would do to a Type 1, 2 or 4 hair texture. They are all extremely different and require different handling and care.
Now I know that hair typing is taboo in the natural hair community. Say what you want. I believe that hair typing is necessary so that we can be better educated as to how we should care for our hair. The overall goal for hair typing is to help us. Not to divide us.
With that being said, I want to list my top 8 things that women with Type 4 hair must never, ever do, if you are hoping to maintain healthy hair.
1. Comb through dry hair with a fine tooth comb.
I cannot stress this enough! This is a definite path to breakage and unnecessary shedding. Type 4 hair should ONLY be combed through while wet and saturated with conditioner….preferably under running water. I would even add that I am a strong advocate for finger detangling. This is a great pre-wash strategy that not only minimizes shedding but ,for me, cuts my wash day time down by 75%.
2. Go several days without applying moisture.
Type 4 hair has extremely high porosity. This means that our hair tends to lose moisture more easily than other textures. You must listen to your hair. Depending on the type of moisturizers you use, you may need to hydrate your hair more often than not. If you have a really good moisturizer, you may only need to moisturize every few days. I like to do the scrunch test with my hair. I scrunch a hand full of hair (in the palm of my hand), near my ear. If I can hear the crunchy sound, then my hair is too dry.
3. Use any old shampoo.
Some shampoos are extremely harsh. Most shampoos are made for Type 1 or 2 hair. Those hair textures need their hair stripped more than ours. Most shampoos are designed to do so (strip hair) and are not a good fit for our thicker textures which actually need more moisture. While it is good for hair to be clean, if your shampoo leaves your hair feeling dry and straw-like afterwards, then it may be time to find another shampoo.