Minimize friction and tangling
Reducing these two things can really lessen hair breakage. Reducing friction means that your hair is handled as minimally as possible. Friction comes from combing, brushing and styling and heat exposure. If your hair is fairly long and prone to tangling, you may want to consider sectioning your hair in big twists or braids for cleansing and conditioning. Your hair shouldn’t be piled on top of your head to be washed as the friction between hair strands can cause damage to the hair and a tangled mess.
Apply your cleansing agent and conditioner to you hair and work it downwards (and not up), helping to smooth the cuticle. Also, finger detangling through this process can make a huge difference. Putting these practices into effect has greatly minimized the need for detangling my hair before styling. Additionally, using products with a lot of slip and glide is important to reduce tangling when finger combing or using tools to comb and brush the hair. Sleeping on a satin pillowcase or using a satin cap or scarf can minimize the friction between your hair and the cotton pillowcase at night.
For me, I find that sleeping a satin pillowcase can also help to preserve my style for a few days. In general, the less you handle your hair, the less breakage and damage you’ll experience.