There was a great question posted on Facebook about being obsessed with protective styles, can they be overdone and just how much does the hair really need?
I thought this question was interesting as many women began creating their natural hair regimens and setting natural hair goals. I would like to point out that Kenneth wrote a great article on incorporating more protective styling into your natural hair regimen, where he clearly draws a line to define the difference between protective styling and protective styles.
Understanding these terms are really important because protective styling and styles have a place in your natural hair regimen depending on your goals. Does everyone have a goal of long natural hair sweeping the middle of their back? No, but if you ask a room of 100 naturals, the majority will definitely say that their goal is healthy hair and this is where protective styling can definitely lend a helping hand.
In my research and experience, if your goal is to have healthy hair, you need to incorporate protective styling techniques. Also, protective styles have been the corner stone for many naturals in achieving the long hair they had as children or to help them experience lengths they have never had before.
Protective styles cannot become obsessive; it becomes more of a choice and/or a preference. I wear protective styles the majority of the time due to extreme convenience, my natural hair goals and because my crown area grows slower than the rest of my hair.
Can you over do protective styles? Well, I am inclined to say “yes”; only because women can become burned out with protective styles and need a change.
I get burned out myself from time to time. When this happens, I change from a loose protective style to a twisted protective style or from twisted protective style to a loose protective style. If wash day is approaching, I may decide to wear loose for the day.
How much protection does natural hair really need?
Personally, I think lots! Only because I realize that it doesn’t require much to damage it. People sometimes forget that natural hair is not rough and tough. It’s fragile and can be damage (loss protein or cuticle layers) by simply shaking your hair in water. Even if some women choose not to wear their hair in a protective style the majority of the time, it’s likely that they’re incorporating protective styling techniques at bedtime.
So, what do you think? Do you think protective styles can be overdone? Just how much does the hair really need?