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How to Care for Children's Hair

Moisturising your hair is super important especially for wavy, curly and coily hair. This method makes things so much simpler and easy to understand so implement these 3 steps to your routine.
Having children is an absolute blessing, but caring for their hair can be a challenge. As a baby, their hair can be very fine and soft, but as they grow their hair type may change. A child with silky fine hair, may have a head full of kinky curls when puberty hits. Another baby may start out with fine ringlets, only to have them turn stick straight when she gets older. Your child's hair may not be anything like yours, it may be a tighter or looser curl pattern to yours and have a completely different texture. Many bi-racial children's parents struggle to tame their babies wild curls because their hair is so different to their own.

My mum is half Asian and had loose wavy curls, while I have much tighter spiral curls. Many parents previously, would turn to relaxers and other chemical processes in an attempt to control their child's hair. This can be very harsh and damaging and often leads to the hair breaking off. Even if you can look after your child's curls, many kids hate having their hair done. They won't sit still and cry when you pull a comb through their hair. I was definitely that tender headed child that would cry the house down, if any of my family is reading this, I am sure they are having flashbacks.

While I don't have any kids of my own, here are few helpful tips for caring, maintaining and styling children's hair.

First and foremost, I truly believe it is so important to let your child know how beautiful their hair is. While it may be more difficult to manage curly hair is stunning and if your hair is different to your child's they may want hair like yours but it is great to empower them to love their own hair. While they may experiment with straightening and styling when they are older, it should not be because they hate their natural hair texture so try and implant the love from young.
Adopt a simple hair care routine that your child will become used too. Curly and Coily hair textures are prone to dryness so make it a point to moisturise your child's hair daily and explain to them why you are doing this. A simple routine will help to minimise the hassle of doing your child's hair and you can make it quick and easy. It will also help to teach your child from a young age the basic steps required to take care of their own hair as they grow older and takeover the reigns of their hair journey.
Use products that make a difference to the way your child's hair behaves and feels. Children's hair can get extremely tangled extremely quickly so it is important to have your detangling spray/ products ready to go. Many brands targeting curly hair, have children's ranges as well. Even us! Our products are suitable for childrens hair. We know that babies’ skin and scalps are extremely sensitive and need very special formulations to promote healthy growth. Children's hair products are made to be more gentle on their hair and to also protect their hair from their inevitably active lifestyles. Look for sulphate free and silicone free products to protect and nourish your kiddies curls. Use natural oils like Hemp Seed oil, Argan oil and Jojoba oil to make sure you lock in moisture, and keep out any chemical nasties.
Water is one of natures greatest moisturisers and hydrates your hair. It is often believed that water dries out the hair, if washed frequently, however in reality its actually the shampoo being used that is the culprit because it can strip hair of its natural oils (sebum) and moisture. Be sure to spray your child's hair with water and invest in a sulphate-free cleanser or a cleansing conditioner. A cleansing conditioner will cleanse the hair while leaving it soft and manageable and can be great for messier children. Another way to lock in moisture is to wash the hair in twists. This involves detangling the hair prior to washing and leaving the hair in twisted sections. Then shampoo the scalp, leaving the twists in place then rinse and condition as normal. Similar to adults hair, deep conditioning can have massive benefits on the hair of children so it is recommended to try and deep condition at least bi-weekly.
If your child has fine hair that is easily weighed down use a lightweight curl creme sparingly, however if they have thicker hair you can use some more nourishing butters.
Paris Reveira
IAT Certified Hair Practitioner
Only detangle your child’s curls when they are wet and coated with conditioner (or a detangling product like leave in conditioner or detangling cream). Depending on the texture and type of curl, you may find you can brush (with a special brush like a tangle teezer) or comb when wet and coated with conditioner. Never dry brush or comb as this will ‘tear-up’ the hair and ‘tear-up’ the child. Avoid the use of plastic styling tools where possible. Afro hair is very fragile and plastic fine tooth combs and brushes can do more harm than good and can cause the hair to break. Instead opt for wooden tools, like a soft boar bristle brush.
Overuse of a blow drier or hair straighteners, is one of the quickest ways to unknowingly damage your child's hair. It can cause the hair to become really dry and damage the natural curl pattern. Many children, if they see you with straight hair, will want to have their hair straightened at some point. It is important that you tell them how beautiful their natural hair is and if you do decide to straighten their hair make sure you deep condition it afterwards to help restore the lost moisture.
Last but not least night time styling. You may choose to let your child wear her hair out during the day or in protective styling during the day but at night, protective styling is vital. Like with adults hair, protective styling helps to stop the breakage brought on my friction. Make sure your child sleeps with a satin bonnet or on a satin/silk pillow case. When styling their hair, moisturise it and style it in a protective style such as plaits, twists etc. Night time styling is a great way to prepare for the morning. If you know you want your child to wear their hair up in a ponytail in the morning, make sure you brush the hair up and plait it where you want the ponytail to be so it is easier to style in the morning.