Protective Styles-Sew-In|Relaxed Hair

Sometimes, you just need a break! I enjoy taking care of my hair on a weekly basis, I put a lot of time and effort to care for my hair. Whether it’s relaxed or natural, I follow a simple and effective regimen. For the past few weeks, I’ve worn buns and wigs but I decided to wear a long term protective style.

I love weaves or sew-ins. I used to wear them a lot. When I was natural; I attributed most of my length retention to long term protective styles. Protective styles are great when installed and taken care of properly. I’m going to tell you everything you need to know before installing a protective style.

The tips I’m about to share apply to any protective-styles(braids, weave, twists , cornrows, weave…etc)

Step 1: Prepoo

Prepoo or ore-shampoo treatment prepares your hair before cleansing. A good prepoo will soften the hair and help with detangling.

ORS Hair Mayonnaise

As mentioned in my regimen, I now prefer to use a light protein conditioner on dry hair. Click here to see other alternatives I like to use besides the ORS Hair Mayonnaise.

The light or medium protein conditioners give the hair some protein but also have great moisturizing agents that help soften the hair. After it is applied , I let it sit for at least 30 minutes before rinsing. As I am rinsing out the prepoo, I detangle with a big tooth comb.

Prepoo applied on dry hair, ready to be rinsed out!

Step 2: Deep cleansing shampoo and Scalp Build Up Remover

You can simply clarify your hair but I started using a deep cleansing shampoo often so I don’t clarify like I used to(Remember, it is okay to switch things up in your regimen).

I love the Ion healthy scalp build-up remover. I apply it on my scalp, massage and let it sit for 5 minutes. I apply the Tea Tree Shampoo on my scalp and let it sit for another 5 minutes. The soothing feeling I get is unmatched. I shampoo twice with the tea tree shampoo. I love the fact that it doesn’t dry out my hair. This shampoo has a bit of slip and my hair is left soft and super clean.

These two products give my scalp and hair a clean slate. They relieve itchiness and also prevent it. Before a protective style, you want to make sure your hair and scalp is free of any build-up. Don’t ever get an install before thoroughly washing.

Step 3: Deep Conditioning

KeraCare Humecto is such a great conditioner! Check my storefront for other great conditioners.

It is so crucial to have your hair moisturized before a protective style. I also got under the steamer so my strands better absorbs the conditioner.

Tip: Rinse well. All the products you use should be rinsed out completely. Any residue left on the scalp can cause scalp problems such as dry scalp/ itchiness.

Step 4: Apple Cider Vinegar Rinse

If you follow me on Instagram , I posted all these steps in my Instagram stories but I forgot to share step 4. ACV has natural antibacterial and antifungal properties so doing a rinse will prevent and kill any yeasts that cause dandruff.

Which one to buy? It’s always best to use Raw unfiltered apple cider vinegar because it has all the nutrients(enzymes and acids) which is what we want.

Apple cider vinegar must be diluted! I mixed 5 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar in a cup of warm water and use it as a final rinse concentrating on my scalp.

Step 5: Moisturize and seal

I moisturized with the Lotta Body Leave-in and sealed with olive oil. Find it on my storefront

Scalp oiling: I learned that my scalp needs to be sealed after washing. Just like your hair and skin, it’s always a good idea to seal it the moisture. So while my scalp was damp, I applied olive oil mixed with a few drops of essential oils(tea tree[prevents itchiness], orange[for scent] and peppermint[soothing and prevents itch] ). I notice that my scalp stays healthy and moisturized when I do that. I used to have issues with my scalp getting flaky and I have dry skin so this helps.

Tip: I also use filtered water to wash my hair and shower. If you live in a hard water area, the minerals in the water can make your hair and skin dry.

Step 6: Four Plaits To Airdry

After airdrying over night. My hair was incredibly soft. I’m 10 weeks post relaxer

Step 7: Blowdrying the roots

I sprayed my favorite oil to my hair and used a blow dryer on medium heat on just my new growth to stretch it out a bit.
After blow drying the roots.

Step 9: Sew-In Install

It’s so important to have someone you really trust do your sew-in. I’ve had bad experiences with sew-ins. It wasn’t the style itself but I had a setback because the person that did my sew-in didn’t care! I only trust my mom or myself when it comes to my hair. Since my mom is town, she installed it for me!

Braid pattern. No hair was added

Step 10: Extensions Prep

This step should be done before a day or days prior to your install.

Please wash the hair before using it! Nowadays, there are so many types of hair extensions. From synthetic to human to virgin hair, who knows what the hair has really been through before getting to you.

Most of the hair we buy is highly processed. Most of the time, it is fiber mixed with horse hair all processed to look and feel like hair! Therefore, the hair is coated with chemicals. For examples, alkaline dye is use on primarily synthetic hair. Most of us are allergic to that chemical. This is why your scalp itches terribly after getting braids. Once I started thoroughly washing my extensions, I no longer had scalp issues.

I posted the hair I used on my Instagram and a follower informed that she bought the same hair she had a terrible allergic reaction. I decided to be careful and thoroughly wash the hair before using.

Purchased the hair from Amazon

I soaked the hair in warm water and lots of apple cider vinegar. About one part apple cider vinegar and two parts water. This measurement isn’t the same as the one I use for my scalp. This is strictly for the extensions. I double soaked it for hours then I shampoo’d twice. After shampooing, I applied Silicon Mix Bambu conditioner and put the hair in the microwave for 3 minutes.

After soaking the hair
After thoroughly washing,conditioning and airdrying the hair. It was very soft.

About the hair: So far so good, this is Day 3 with this sew-in and I haven’t had any problems. Three days isn’t enough to give a proper review so stay tuned. After two weeks, I’ll update this post. I only used 2 bundles.

It looks very natural and blends easily with my relaxed hair. I don’t plan on using heat on the hair.

Another tip: Always wash your tools before doing your hair especially before getting a protective style.

Short story time: Once upon a time, my sister and I went to a very popular Houston hair stylist for sew-ins. She didn’t disinfect the combs and we had bad dandruff from that. Our scalps were so sore and tender and we later learned that other clients suffered from the same setback after going to her. The end

Another tip : For a sew-in, always make sure whoever is sewing is sewing through the braid not underneath the braid. Not sewing properly (sewing underneath the braid) will severely pull the hair at the roots and can result in extra tight sew-in. It is a protective style, we want the hair to be protected not have hair loss after taking it out

One last tip: I leave my edges and napes out. Those parts should only be treated gently so I choose to not have them braided.

Step 11: Take Care Of Your Hair

The hair is attached to your hair so you need to take care of the hair underneath and of course the extensions. Just because your hair has been put away doesn’t mean you should give it some attention and care.

Fun fact: I used to never wash my hair while wearing a sew-in and although i didn’t have a setback from doing so, it’s just not sanitary or good for the hair.

As needed, you should still be washing and conditioning your hair , and I mean the hair underneath as well. For someone who is very active and sweats a lot, washing on a weekly basis may be beneficial. If you don’t sweat a lot then washing every two weeks may work for you. Listen to your hair.

When I wash my hair with this sew-in, I will make a separate blog post about it. Until then, check out the latest hair tips on my blog, also visit my Instagram for more hair tips.

Thank you to my mom that I love so much. She did my sew-in!
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