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Hair Breakage in Black Women

Bidisha Mukherjee
Hair breakage can be stopped provided you treat the hair properly and take correct precautionary measures to prevent any further damage to it. This story provides tips for the treatment and prevention of hair breakage in black women.
Hair breakage in black women is quite a common problem. This is mainly because, even though black hair consists of the same components as in any other type of hair, it is arranged in a slightly different order, which makes it very delicate. It often becomes more fragile due to wrong handling.
Excessive combing, brushing, and washing of the hair, and treatments like coloring or curl relaxing if done very frequently, are some of the causes of hair breakage. Wearing hair down and sleeping on cotton pillows causes rubbing of hair against the harsh fibers of the cloth of the pillow and leads to split ends.
This in turn weakens the hair and increases the chances of breakage. There are several methods of hair care that can be used to improve its health and stop breakage.

Trim Your Hair

Split ends not only make the hair weak, but also tend to travel up the hair and cause damage to the entire hair shaft. One thing is for sure, you cannot repair those damaged ends. Regular trimming will help you get rid of those split ends and give your hair a healthier look. Go for a trim once in every 6-8 weeks.

Use a Good-Quality Shampoo

Select a pH-balanced shampoo which will have a moisturizing effect on your hair. Strictly avoid cheap shampoos as they contain harsh chemicals that will take away the natural oils of the hair and make it extremely dry and fragile. You should not shampoo too frequently. Ideally, you should use a shampoo only once a week. However, you can rinse the hair with water every alternate day.


Every time you rinse your hair, you must apply a good moisturizing conditioner. A conditioner repairs the damaged cuticles and helps to retain moisture in the hair shafts. Thus, the possibility of frizzing decreases. Apply the conditioner thoroughly on wet hair and allow it to stay for three minutes. Then, wash it off with water.

Hot Oil Treatment

This has a moisturizing effect on hair, and works as an excellent substitute for natural oils produced by the oil glands present in the scalp. It also strengthens the roots and prevents hair from falling off. Heat the oil (you can use olive oil or jojoba oil) and apply it on the hair in such a way that it spreads completely from root to tip.
Cover up the hair with a warm towel for an hour and then wash off the oil under running water. This treatment should be done once a month.

Preventing Breakage

When you take good care of your black hair, the chances of hair loss can be reduced to a great extent. The following are some tips that can prevent breakage.
  • Combing or brushing of hair should be done carefully. De-tangle it with your fingers when it is still wet, and then comb slowly with a wide-toothed comb. A fine-toothed comb is not recommended.
  • Do not apply heat as it tends to strip off moisture from the hair surface. After a shower, do not use a hair dryer and allow the hair to air dry.
  • When you experience a problem of hair breakage, do not use strong chemicals like hair color and hair relaxers on it. Once its condition improves, you can use these products, but not very frequently. Most importantly, do not use them together. If you are using relaxers, do not color the hair.
  • Avoid any tight hairstyles as they put an additional amount of stress on the hair line. Use accessories like scrunchies or rubber bands with great care, so that they do not hold the hair too tightly.
  • During bedtime, either wrap up the hair with a silk scarf or use a satin case for your pillow. Thus, you can prevent the occurrence of split ends caused by rubbing of the hair on the pillow.
Diet and mental stress play a major role in breakage of black hair. Take care that your diet contains enough proteins, vitamins, and minerals that can promote healthy hair. Stay away from junk foods that can weaken hair. It is also very important to relax your mind in order to eliminate the stress factor.