Since microbraids are so tiny, it can take up to 12 hours to get them installed, at a cost ranging from $180 – $400, so it’s no wonder people keep them in for so long; they want a good return on their investment! Though, how long can micro braids actually last? Keep reading to find out!
Micro braids can last for 3 months with the proper hair care routine by prepping your hair beforehand and cleansing your hair and scalp with braids. However, hairstylists don’t recommend keeping your hair braided for longer than 2 months at a time as your hair and scalp need time to breathe in between protective styling.
If you’d like to find out more about how to properly care for your hair and micro braids so that your micro braids last longer, with detailed step-by-step methods, then keep reading. Take a look for yourself!
How To Make Your Micro Braids Last Longer
The easiest way to make your micro braids last longer is to ensure that you’re keeping them cleansed and moisturized. That said, you should only wash our microbraids once a week with a clarifying shampoo after the first four weeks of you having them in. To moisturize, apply a diluted leave-in conditioner to your scalp three times a week.
Keep reading to find out more on how you can make your micro braids last longer without damaging your natural hair!
Prep Your Natural Hair Before Getting Micro Braids
01. Chat with your hairstylist first. If you have hair that is naturally dry or thin and fragile, microbraids could actually cause considerable hair damage to your hair. Have your hairstylist evaluate your hair and explain to you how to protect your hair as best as possible if you insist on getting micro braids and how long you should keep your hair braided.
It’s very important for people with textured hair to find a hairdresser who understands their hair type and can help them with the best hair care tips to maintain braids with their hair type.
02. Try a hot oil treatment a few days before you braid your hair. This will help to hydrate your hair and to add moisture so that it can better withstand being tucked away under braids for long periods of time. Hair Moisturisers will also strengthen and fortify your hair’s cuticles and lock in moisture.
Pro Tip: It’s essential to use a moisturizing and nourishing hair conditioner with either vitamins, natural oils, or both. That way, your hair, and scalp can retain the nutrients they need, and your hair will be strong and healthy.
03. Deep condition your hair several times before getting your hair done. Ideally, you should be deep-conditioning your hair at least once a week, but if you’re getting your hair braided, I suggest applying a deep-conditioner that also doubles as a leaving conditioner at least 3 times a week.
Applying a deep-conditioner at least three days before you install your micro braids will keep your natural hair healthy and give it some slip so it’s easier to braid.
You can either buy a deep-conditioner item or you can make your own with everyday household items, for example, banana, avocado, coconut milk, eggs, and honey.
04. Trim off dead or split-ends. Getting rid of dead ends or split ends keeps your hair healthy, which is important for someone who is getting any type of braid style, but also especially important if you’re getting micro braids.
Try to get your split ends trimmed a week or two before braiding your hair into micro braids as opposed to getting your hair trimmed during or right before getting your braids. Newly trimmed ends can be more difficult to blend with your braids, thus shortening your braids’ lifespan and making them look untidy and unkempt
05. Wash and clarify your hair and scalp. Since microbraids are intended to be worn for up to 3 months, your hair won’t get the necessary cleansing and haircare for a long period of time while you have your micro braids in.
The night before you get your micro braids, you need to cleanse and clarify your hair to eliminate any buildup so that you can braid your microbraids with clean hair.
You can buy a gentle shampoo or clarifying shampoo, or you can make your own cleanser at home using apple cider vinegar and warm water. Pour the mixture over your hair, wait for two to five minutes, and then wash it out with cold water.
If you have a lot of build-up and hair that is naturally oily and attracts dirt, use a combination of baking soda and castile soap to make a cleanser to cleanse your scalp. Gently massage the blend into your scalp, wait for two to five minutes, and then thoroughly wash it out with warm water. Follow up with a cold water rinse.
Wash And Condition Your Hair With Micro Braids
Step 01: Try not to wash or condition your hair for about a few weeks after getting your micro braids. Hairstylists suggest that you don’t wash your hair until about a month after your hair has been micro braided.
Step 02: Wash and condition your hair and braids every week after the first four weeks. Make sure that you shampoo your micro braids carefully using a clarifying shampoo.
To wash your braids properly:
- Thoroughly wet your hair
- Apply a tablespoon of shampoo onto your hands to create a lather, then gently massage your scalp
- Do not rub your hair or scalp too vigorously, as this will make your hair and braids frizzy
- Rinse the shampoo out using warm water
Step 03: Dilute your conditioner before you apply it with 1 part water for every 2 parts of the conditioner. Heavy hair products can make your scalp flaky, which is difficult to get rid of when you have micro braids.
Dilute your conditioner with some water in a spray bottle with a sharp tip for easier access to the scalp. Your conditioner should be watered down enough to effortlessly pour out of the spray bottle’s tip.
This method can also be used when applying your shampoo if it’s very thick and hard to rinse out.
Are micro braids bad for your hair?
Micro braids aren’t bad for your hair unless you have thin hair. This is because since micro braids are so small, they require only a few of your natural hair strands to make each braid. If you have thin hair, micro braids could make it worse or even cause other hair damage as the braids’ extra weight could make your hair weaker and break.