I received my monthly Essence magazine and found an article on hair loss. Did you know that a recent 2011 study showed that 60% of 326 black women studied showed signs of advanced hair loss. I think that this says a lot for black women and the way that we manage and/or style our coifs. The study showed that the women who were more likely to suffer from hair loss were those that wear styles that caused traction – too tight braids and weaves. Are you one of those women? I am in no way saying anything negative about the women who wear these styles, but I think that it is important to know the affects certain styles can have on hair growth thus contributing to hair loss. As discussed in some previous posts we do have curly hair, with different curl variations. These curls are more fragile than we think and we need to be aware of what damage certain styles may case. The too tight braids (I was in this group with the micro braids), wearing weaves entirely too long, and gluing the lace front wigs and tracks directly to your head.
Traction alopecia is cause by taut (tight) hairstyles such as ponytails, extensions, or cornrows that are so tight the scalp aches. Tight weaves can contribute to hair loss as well. Because the hair has tight cornrows to support the weave, again you have a taut hair style that can damage your hair. If you want to see this in reality check out the photos of Naomi Campbell below.
These photos show what weave can do to your hair. I still think Naomi is beautiful, but is this worth the price of beauty? As black women we have to become more conscious of hair care and with less focus on the hair style. Because we have been conditioned to believe that straight hair or curly hair is good hair we make every attempt to present good hair to everyone we come in contact with. I know we all want to show that inner diva and you can let that diva shine without causing major damage to your hair.
Chemical overprocessing is another issue that can result in cicatricial alopecia or hot-comb alopecia. This can occur when hair is relaxed sooner that necessary to maintain bone straight hair. If using a relaxer you should only relax your hair about every four to six weeks. This is just some of the discussion in the article which I though was great! I wonder if women know that the Jennifer Hudson, Beyonce, Ciara hair styles are the reason that their hair seems to not flourish? Needless to say I think all of the women mentioned are beautiful and talented, but remember they have very well paid stylist who manage their hair whenever needed. So before you or your stylist decide to go with that new look think about how it will affect the health of your hair and if it is worth it. If you would like to read the article pick up the January 2013 issue of Essence Magazine. The article is titled “Stop Hair Loss” by Teri Agins/Photography was done by Bruce Soyez Bernard.