Shrinkage is the decrease in hair length that occurs from the time natural hair is wet to when it dries. Hair can shrink from 20-80% of its true length, depending on the type of hair that you have.
This phenomenon is more pronounced in the curlier and kinkier hair types like 4B and mostly, 4C. While many naturals see it as a negative trait, you should know that shrinkage is actually a healthy trait of your hair as it shows that your hair is moisturized and free from any heat or chemical damage.
The most important thing to remember as you try to stretch your hair back is to be gentle. Don’t tug or pull at your hair too hard as this can be damaging to your strands.
In this article we’ll be focusing on the heatless methods you can use to stretch your hair. Heat use can be damaging to your already fragile strands, so it’s important to find ways to stretch the hair without causing harm. Here are some methods you could try:
Bantu knots are a great way to stretch your hair without using heat. All you need is some leave-in conditioner and a wide tooth comb. Start by sectioning your hair in small sections and apply your leave-in conditioner. Then twist each section into a Bantu knot. Keep these in for as many days as you need to, and when you remove them, you’ll be left with beautiful stretched hair.
This method is as simple as wrapping sectioned hair in black thread. The longer your hair is banded, the more stretched it will become. Take care not to thread your hair too tightly or in very small sections.
Familiar to the vast majority of us, this is the easiest method to stretch your hair by far. All you have to do is portion off your hair into sections, separate it into three portions and plait it into a neat braid. You can get creative with the design of your braids, however, just make sure not to form braids that are too small as these may give you a hard time removing.
Did you know holding your hair in a pineapple is an effective way to stretch it? If you don’t already know, a pineapple is a loose bun or ponytail that’s held at the top of your head.
You can hold your pineapple using thick thread that won’t break your hair or an elastic hair band.
Holding a pineapple can help to prevent frizz and knots as well as lengthen your curls. Accompany this method with another method like twisting or braiding in the night for the best results.
This method is similar to African hair threading, the only difference is that you use hair bands to hold your hair in place. Use tangle free hair bands that won’t tug at your hair.
The down side with excessive use of this method is that your hair could break from it tugging at the hair bands.
To achieve more length, forge your hair into two-strand twists. They don’t manipulate your hair and you can leave them in for days or weeks.
To execute this method, apply some leave-in conditioner to sections of your hair. Divide each section into two equal strands and twist them together, continuing to the ends.
Finally, for each of these methods, it’s important that you keep your hair hydrated. Most of these methods eave the scalp exposed so we advise that you spray your hair with our Tsavorite Spritz Spray daily to prevent your scalp from drying out as you stretch your hair.