How To: Protect Your Hairline

One of the most disheartening things for anyone is to see is their hairline wearing away.  It’s bad enough for a man, but it can be emotionally traumatizing for a woman.  African American women in particular, are especially prone to damaged hairlines due to the overuse of chemicals and hairstyles that cause stress on the hairline.  Traction alopecia, a type of hair loss directly connected to improper styling techniques and damaging products, usually causes a non-existent hairline.  The best way to prevent a damaged hairline is to follow practices that protect the delicate area of your scalp.  The following are some great tips that will help you keep a lush, full hairline:


Limit The Amount of Chemical Processes

just_say_noRelaxing.  Dyeing.  These and other chemical processes can wreak havoc on a delicate hairline.  Lye-based relaxers have sodium hydroxide as their main ingredient.  This is a highly caustic agent, which, if applied incorrectly, will lead to breakage and damage.  You’re not necessarily safer with no-lye relaxers either.  Even though they are made up of different chemical components (guanidine or potassium chloride), these chemicals can also be harsh on the hair.  The delicate hair at your hairline is particularly vulnerable.

Add to this the damage from other chemical processes like dyeing, and you have a recipe for hairline disaster.  The ingredients in these products often cause scalp damage, literally burning your hair all the way to the roots and severely damaging your scalp.  Limit your hair’s exposure to these processes if you can.  Test a small section on your hair prior to full application to make sure you don’t have any adverse reactions.  Make sure that you deal with an experienced stylist who knows how to apply the chemicals in a way that protects your scalp.  If you’re relaxing your hair, don’t even think of dyeing your hair, especially with a permanent dye.  Some stylists recommend using a semi-permanent dye if you’re going to dye your hair at all.  If you insist on a permanent dye, wait at least three weeks before applying.


Cut Down on the Amount of Heat You Use

chiflatironHeated styling tools like hair dryers, curling and straightening irons can wreak havoc on the delicate hair at the hairline.  Many women want their hairlines to lie straight, and will use straightening irons pressed right up against the edge of their foreheads in order to get that sleek look.  The heat causes damage to the hair cuticle, which becomes frayed and dried.  Women see those frayed, frizzy pieces and apply more heat to try and get them straight, invariably causing even more damage.  Your hair follicles cannot take extended periods of exposure to extreme heat, and will eventually suffer permanent damage.  Limit the amount of heat you use. You have to ask yourself if having straight hair is worth possibly losing your hairline permanently.  Don’t use the highest settings on your heating appliances, and give your hair a break.  Serums applied to the hairline and held down with a silk scarf could help keep hair straighter longer. Wrapping your hair works as well.



cornrowThe hairstyles that you wear can have a profound effect on the condition of your hairline.  Hairstyles like tight microbraids, hair extensions, and buns can literally rip your hairline straight from the scalp.  Braids that are tied too tightly add a lot of stress to the hairline area, weakening the follicles.  The extension braid can be too heavy for the strands of hair that it’s attached to, and will eventually pull the hair right out from the roots.  Your fragile hairline will be the first part of your hair to be shown the door.  Don’t let stylists install braids too tightly.  If your braids are too tight, tell your stylist to take them out right away– damage to the hairline can be quick and immediate.  Protect your edges when wearing hair weaves in order to keep your hairline from breaking.  Don’t wear severe buns too often since they eventually rip away at fragile hairlines.


Styling Products

hair gelPomades and gels can help keep a sleek hairline, but make sure to check the labels of the styling products you use to make sure that they don’t include too many drying ingredients like alcohols.  Alcohols can dry out the hair, causing it to break right off.  Moisturize and seal your hair as often as you can, paying close attention to the hairline area.



Protecting Your Hair At Night

wraphairAt night, make sure you wear a silk bonnet or scarf in order protect your hair, especially the hairline, from ripping and tearing against cotton sheets.  Flipping and turning throughout the night can wreak havoc on delicate hair follicles.






For Women:  Hair Dye and Hair Relaxers
Hair Loss:  Prevention – Mayo Clinic

Author: Sakai Blue

Sakai Blue is a UK-born, New York-based writer with an extensive background in TV and advertising. She writes and produces television promos, and writes beauty, health, home design and finance articles for various online sites. She can always be found with her Macbook Pro in hand, and her Final Cut Pro running.

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  1. I have an afro. Recently i had thick braids for 23hrs and lost my hairline because they were too tight and the pain was so unbearable thay every part of me got so sick i ddnt pitch up for work. I work in the corporate field and i love looking good. I cant go to work looking like this. I need a proper hairstyle to hide the loss of hair. Please help

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  2. Castor oil, jamaican oil, olive oil, avocado oil

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  3. what kind of natural products/remedies can we use to gain the hairline back and make the hair stronger than ever?

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