My name is Semira and I have been natural for about a year and a half now but my hair is still really short. Due to this I started stretching my hair out with a straightening comb and although I still get some breakage it isn’t at as much as I was experiencing before. I mostly braid back to back all year round.
Please help me out as to what creams and practices to apply.
I am going to recommend more so that you focus on changing your practices. Products help, but they only do so much when you are not implementing the correct treatment of your hair. You should think of your hair as delicate material that you are trying to preserve.
The reason why you are experiencing relief when you stretch your hair is simple: stretched hair tangles less thus leading to less breakage. It’s okay to stretch your hair using heat, because ultimately it will help to alleviate breakage. However, just limit your heat usage if you feel this route is for you. Don’t use a curling iron everyday to style your hair, instead choose roller sets (choose alternate routes so you are not using heat all the time). You should also try heatless methods for stretching your hair like banding, pineappling, and twists.
Check out these articles for further reading stretching:
As far as you braiding your hair back to back goes this doesn’t sound too good. While braids are a form of protective styling, when used too frequently this can actually work against you. It can cause traction alopecia or thinning of the edges. When thinning of the hair occurs and this issue is left to linger it can also cause permanent damage. Even though you can still wash your hair and moisturize your hair while wearing braids it still isn’t as effective as when you are not wearing them. You definitely want to give your hair breaks in between, so you are not putting so much strain on your hair.
Read these articles about box braids:
Now as far as products go of course having moisturizing products that work to stretch your hair couldn’t hurt. Check out these pages:
Semira, your hair is in fact growing all the time! The reason why you are not seeing growth is because your hair is breaking off before you get the chance to see any growth. Once you counteract the issues that are causing breakage, you will see more length retention. I hope I have given you some tools that will help you have a successful natural hair journey!