5 tips for regrowing your edges

Hair loss among black women has reached epidemic proportions. In a study printed by the American Academy of Dermatology, 50% of black women reported experiencing some form of hair loss.

While that number is alarming, the good news (or sad news depending on how you look at it) is that this problem is completely preventable in most women.

The primary cause of hair loss in black women is damaging styling practices, techniques, and hair products.

In this article we’re going to focus on how you can save the hair around your edges, and what to do if you’re already experiencing hair loss in that area.

black woman with braids needs to regrow edges

Why are our edges always the first to go?

The hair around your edges is the most fragile and the most vulnerable to hair loss for a few reasons.

First, the hair around your edges is generally finer than the rest of your hair. This means it’s easy to cause breakage and damage from improper styling and product use.

Second, the hair around your edges is the most overly manipulated part of your hair. Every style that you do will involve brushing, combing, or some other form of styling your edges.

These two factors combined explain why this part of the hair is more prone to breakage and damage.

What causes damage to your edges?

There are three types of damage that can lead to hair loss – mechanical stress, chemical stress, and hormonal stress.

Mechanical Stress

Mechanical stress refers to what you do to your hair when you’re styling it. Types of mechanical stress include combing or brushing your hair roughly, wearing cotton headwraps that suck the moisture out of your hair, and using the wrong kinds of tools to style your hair (like using a fine tooth comb to detangle).

Wearing tight hairstyles that create tension around your hairline is another form of mechanical stress. Braids, ponytails, puffs, and buns can all lead to damage, breakage, and hair loss if your hair is pulled too tightly. You should always be able to turn your head, frown, squint, etc. without feeling any pulling at your hairline or the nape of your neck. If you can’t, that means your style is too tight and you need to take it down.

Wig caps and wig combs can also create mechanical stress. Pay attention to the material that your wig cap is made of is. Any rough or drying materials should not be put directly on your hair as they can cause dryness and breakage. Your wig should also be secured in a way that doesn’t pull or snag your hair.

Chemical Stress

Chemical stress refers to any chemical or product that damages your hair or causes dryness that can lead to breakage. Relaxers are the number one cause of chemical stress. Other culprits are bonding glue, some gels, and any styling product that contains benzyl alcohol or other harsh chemicals that prevent your hair from retaining moisture.

Hormonal Stress

The third cause of damage or hair loss is hormonal stress. This includes postpartum shedding, lupus, and other conditions that affect your body’s internal hormone levels, which can in turn affect your hair.

black woman with natural hair who needs to regrow edges

What can you do if you start to experience hair loss around your edges?

  1. Start early! The best time to act is as soon as you start to notice a change in your hair. The sooner, the better. Many conditions like traction alopecia and central centrifugal cicatricial alopecia can be prevented or delayed if you start at the first sign of a problem.

  2. Cover your hair with silk or satin when sleeping and under hats or headwraps. Cotton absorbs the moisture from your hair, and other rough fabrics and cause split ends and breakage. Use a soft material to keep your hair protected.

  3. Stop wearing tight hair styles. I know you want your hair to look perfect and to have every hair in place at all times, but when you pull your hair tight in an attempt to make your style last longer, you are literally killing your hair follicles. At the end of the day it’s not worth it.

  4. Be gentle when combing or brushing. Use a wide tooth comb or a soft brush. Do not pull and tug on your hair. Be gentle and be patient.

  5. Be very careful with wigs and weaves. Be mindful of the materials that are coming in contact with your hair and how your extensions are applied. Make sure that you are removing them properly to avoid damage at that step. Try a wig with bangs or a headband to avoid over manipulation of your edges.

What if you have significant hair loss around your edges?

If you have hair loss from mechanical or chemical damage, it’s not too late to reverse the damage in most cases. You can still use the tips above to prevent further damage to your hair, and give your hair follicles a chance to recover and start producing hair again. Use our 100% Organic Extra Strength Growth Oil to help strengthen your hair follicles and stimulate growth. Apply the oil to the affected area and massage for 3-5 minutes every 1-3 days.

If you have hair loss it is even more important that you develop healthy hair practices and stop doing whatever caused the hair loss in the first place. It can be very tempting to wear wigs or tight braids to try to camouflage your hair loss, but in most cases this only makes the problem worse. Do your best to give your hair a break so that the hair loss does not become permanent.

best growth oil to regrow edges

What if your hair loss is hormonal or genetic?

Hormonal or genetic hair loss is a lot trickier to fix. In this case, no matter what you do, you may still experience some hair loss. Our goal here is to reverse the damage whenever possible. If it is not possible to reverse the damage, we still want to try to slow down the hair loss and make sure we aren’t doing anything (like bad styling techniques or using bad products) that will make the problem worse. You should be working with your doctor or dermatologist to make sure that you’re on the best treatment plan, and along with your treatment plan you want to use hair products that will work with you instead of against you.

Postpartum shedding

Postpartum hair loss is a special case. Excessive hair shedding between 5-12 months after having a baby is totally normal. Even to point of having bald spots. Even if you don’t do anything and just allow nature to take its course, your hair will normally grow back on its own as your hormones return to normal. As with any other condition, it is still important to follow the tips above so that you don’t make the problem worse, but you can feel confident that postpartum hair loss is not permanent.

As always, email me at contact@indaranaturals.com if you have any questions or if you just want to let me know what you think about this topic!

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