Box braids are a popular hairstyle that can be done in a variety of ways. Whether you want to wear your hair in intricate designs or simply just keep it straight, box braids are an amazing option.
But with the tightness of box braids, they can become dry and brittle over time. Luckily, there are ways to soften them up!
In this blog post, we will discuss how to soften stiff box braids so that you can continue to rock your look without sacrificing hairstyle maintenance. From natural remedies to products, read on to find out more!
What Causes Box Braids to Stiffen?
Over time, the oils from your scalp can build up on your box braids, causing them to stiffen. This is especially true if you have oily skin or if you don’t wash your braids often enough. There are several factors that can cause box braids to stiffen, including:
- Dryness: One of the main causes of stiff box braids is dryness. When the hair is not properly moisturized, it can become dry and stiff, leading to uncomfortable and unmanageable braids.
- Product build-up: If you use a lot of styling products on your box braids, they can build up over time and cause your braids to become stiff and heavy.
- Tight braids: If your box braids are too tight, they can cause discomfort and stiffness. It is important to avoid pulling your braids too tightly and to give your scalp a break from tight hairstyles.
- Heat damage: Using heat styling tools, such as flat irons or curling irons, on your box braids can cause heat damage and lead to stiffness. It is best to avoid heat styling your box braids to help prevent stiffness.
By avoiding dryness, product build-up, tight braids, and heat damage, you can help prevent your box braids from stiffening and keep them looking healthy and hydrated.
How Can You Prevent Box Braids From Stiffening?
Here are some steps you can follow to prevent box braids from stiffening:
- Use a moisturizing product: Use a moisturizing product, such as a leave-in conditioner or hair oil, to help keep your box braids hydrated and prevent them from becoming stiff. Simply apply a small amount of the product to your box braids, focusing on the ends.
- Avoid using hot water: When washing your box braids, avoid using hot water, as it can strip the hair of its natural oils and lead to dryness. Instead, use lukewarm water to help keep your box braids moisturized.
- Use a silk or satin pillowcase: At night, use a silk or satin pillowcase to help protect your box braids and keep them moisturized while you sleep.
- Avoid tight hairstyles: Tight hairstyles, such as braids that are too tight or ponytails that are pulled too tightly, can cause your box braids to become stiff and uncomfortable. Avoid wearing tight hairstyles and try to wear your box braids loose to help prevent stiffness.
You should be able to prevent your box braids from stiffening and keep them looking healthy and hydrated. It is important to moisturize your box braids regularly and avoid using hot water and tight hairstyles to help prevent dryness and stiffness.
How to Soften Stiff Box Braids
If you’ve ever had box braids, you know that they can be pretty stiff and uncomfortable at first. Here are some steps you can follow to soften stiff box braids:
- Apply a moisturizing product: Use a moisturizing product, such as a leave-in conditioner or hair oil, to help hydrate and soften your box braids. Simply apply a small amount of the product to your box braids, focusing on the ends.
- Use a wide-tooth comb or detangling brush: Use a wide-tooth comb or a detangling brush to gently comb through your box braids. This will help to loosen any tangles or knots and make your box braids feel softer.
- Use a hair steamer: A hair steamer can help to add moisture to your box braids and make them feel softer. Simply place your head under the steamer for a few minutes, or use a handheld steamer to apply the steam directly to your box braids.
- Use a silk or satin headscarf: At night, wrap your head in a silk or satin headscarf to help protect your box braids and keep them moisturized while you sleep.
How Do You Get Rid of Scalp Pain After Getting Braids?
Here are some steps you can follow to help relieve scalp pain after getting braids:
- Take a pain reliever: If your scalp is sore, you can try taking a pain reliever, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, to help reduce inflammation and alleviate pain.
- Apply a warm compress: Applying a warm compress to your scalp can help to soothe soreness and reduce discomfort. To make a warm compress, soak a clean washcloth in warm water and wring out excess water. Apply the washcloth to your scalp and leave it in place for a few minutes.
- Massage your scalp: Gently massaging your scalp can help to relieve tension and soreness. You can use your fingertips or a soft bristle brush to gently massage your scalp in circular motions.
- Avoid tight hairstyles: Tight hairstyles, such as braids that are too tight or ponytails that are pulled too tightly, can cause pain and discomfort. If your braids are causing scalp pain, you may need to loosen them or try a different hairstyle.
- Use a scalp moisturizer: A scalp moisturizer can help to soothe and hydrate your scalp, which can help to reduce pain and discomfort. You can apply a scalp moisturizer directly to your scalp or add a few drops to your braids.
By following these steps, you should be able to get some relief from scalp pain after getting braids. If your scalp pain persists or is severe, you should consult a healthcare professional for further treatment.
How Long Does It Take for Braids to Soften?
The amount of time it takes for braids to soften will depend on several factors, including the type of braids you have, the length and thickness of your hair, and the products you use to moisturize your braids. Here are some general guidelines for how long it may take for braids to soften:
- Synthetic braids: Synthetic braids may take longer to soften than natural hair braids, as synthetic hair is more prone to dryness and stiffness. It may take several weeks or longer for synthetic braids to soften.
- Natural hair braids: Natural hair braids may soften faster than synthetic braids, as natural hair is more moisturized and pliable. It may take a week or two for natural hair braids to soften.
- Length and thickness of hair: Longer and thicker braids may take longer to soften than shorter and thinner braids, as there is more hair to moisturize.
- Products used: The products you use to moisturize your braids can also affect how long it takes for your braids to soften. Using a leave-in conditioner or hair oil can help to moisturize your braids and make them softer more quickly.
Overall, it may take anywhere from a week to several weeks for braids to soften, depending on the factors mentioned above. It is important to be patient and to regularly moisturize your braids to help them soften and stay healthy.
Softening your stiff box braids doesn’t have to be a difficult task! By following the steps outlined in this article, you can easily soften and moisturize your braids to make them look beautiful and fresh.
With regular maintenance of deep conditioning treatments, oiling sessions, and protective styles, you can keep your box braids soft for months on end. So get ready to turn heads with those voluminous box braids – they won’t stay stiff forever!