Regardless of the season, protective styling can be a natural girl’s saving grace. Whether you’ve decided to get your style because you need a break from doing it yourself or because you just want a new look for yourself, there comes a time where you have to take it all down. And while it may take a lot to prepare yourself for the seemingly daunting task, it doesn’t have to be as dreadful as you imagine.

Here are eight tips for taking down your protective style and avoiding as much breakage as possible.

Have patience.

Before you even begin the process of taking down your protective style (braids, faux locs, twists, etc.), remind yourself that this will take time. Also give yourself a gentle reminder that your hair will probably encounter more shedding than normal so don’t get overwhelmed if you see more hair than usual.

Put a bit of product on your hair.

Prior to taking your braids down, spray your hair with warm water and follow-up with some of our Quench Moisture Intensive Leave-In to help the hair slip off easily. Doing this will make the process of taking your protective style down much easier as well as protect your hair.

Bring out the pre-poo.

If you haven’t adopted pre-pooing into your wash day routine, this is the prime time to do so. Pre-poos can help to detangle your hair, restore the oils that were stripped from your hair, prep your hair for the shampooing process, and much more. Our Balance Grapeseed & Avocado Natural Growth Oil is the perfect pre-poo to start off with.

Detangle from ends to root.

Whether you choose to use a pre-poo or use our Knot On My Watch Instant Detangling Therapy, detangling your hair after you take your protective style down will prevent massive breakage. It will even make your shampooing process a lot easier.

Give your hair a good scrub.

Regardless if you’ve kept your protective style in for two weeks or four weeks, there’s a lot of dirt and product buildup that has accumulated on your scalp during that time. Keeping this in mind, you’ll want to give your hair a good scrub – more than once – before moving on to the conditioning phase. Our Oh So Clean Moisturizing & Softening Shampoo can give you the cleansing your hair so desperately needs.

Deep condition your tresses.

If you weren’t a fan of deep conditioning in the past, here’s the time for you to get it in rotation. After all of the time your hair has been wrapped in the hair of your choice, your natural hair can become weak and dry. By administering a deep condition, you’ll be restoring both moisture and strength to your strands. Using our Coco Repair Deep Conditioner and covering your hair with a plastic cap for 10 to 20 minutes can offer amazing results.

Don’t forget to trim and pack on the moisture!

If you didn’t do it prior to putting your hair into a protective style, then it’s quite likely that you’ll need to get your mane trim. In order to maintain the appearance of healthy strands, regular trims are an absolute must. You’ll also want to follow the LOC Method so that you can retain your moisture when styling.

Give your hair time to breathe.

Though it may be tempting to install another protective style after you’ve taken down your current one, it’s best to give your scalp and hair a little time off. Instead, try a low manipulation style during the two weeks in between protective styles.

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