How to Manage Your Boys Short Afro
How-to-hair-guide for moms with sons
We have gotten accustomed to managing our curls, but for the life of us we cannot seem to get a grasp on our boys hair. It’s time that we start talking about how to care for their hair, because they want to grow it out; some want locs and a lot of them want the high top, afro, curly fro, curly Mohawk, etc. Regardless of the style, they are now going back to the hairstyles that we grew up with, or the styles that our ancestors rocked. As the quote says, “there is nothing new under the sun.” But since the popularity of these styles, somehow we are still clueless in how we are supposed to manage our boys hair. Do we really want to do all the work we put into our hair, or the real question is, do we need to do all of that?
The thing is, we really don’t need to put in all of that time on their hair. Reason being is that, for the most part, they want it to be a short afro, tapered on the side and a good line up. They are not trying to grow it out in great lengths. For this reason, we can be very minimal and simple when caring for their hair. There are a few things that our boys need to stop doing and a few things they need to start doing so that their hair will be fully moisturized and soft. One thing about boys is that they already come hard wired to be low maintenance; if they want to wash their hair they wash it with soap, and they wash it everyday, why? I have no clue. And after that, they are good to go, they may grab whatever is on the counter top and put that in there, rather it is grease or pink oil moisturizer, and that’s about it. If this is your boy than they need to do a tad bit more and stop washing it everyday with soap! If you have a son and they are not quite of age to manage it themselves this process for you will be about 20 minutes, if that, and you can move on with your life.
What you want to focus on is wash day, and do this every week, it has to be, otherwise their hair will become extremely dry. On wash day, you want to condition wash mainly, and throw in shampoo once in awhile. (Co-Wash is using a specified “conditioner cleanser” to wash the hair) Then deep condition, try using one with a protein because that will help strengthen the hair and keep the moisture levels up. Only leave it in for as long as it takes you to detangle. You can do this all while having them over the tub, literally 5-10 minutes. Then apply the leave in. The leave in conditioner should be thick and moisturizing. Then you want to apply the moisturizer and sealing agent of your choice, be it a butter or oil. Don’t be afraid to lay it on thick, you are only doing it once a week and it has to last. You want to incorporate these three steps at the end because you will not be doing it throughout the week. You will want to go through it with a denman brush ensuring that each strand is evenly coated, then lightly go through it and finger coil, which is you just taking pieces of hair and wrapping them around your finger to give it a little more curl. Once dry, you can pick it at the root to give it lift, but not necessary. You are done after this. You would want your child to wear a du-rag at night and possibly spray the hair with a moisturizing spray in the morning, but if that is too much to ask, the hair should be fine if you have wash day every week. Towards the end of the week it may start to look dry but wash day will be coming up so it will be fine.
Once you start doing this routine it will take a good month for their hair to start looking like it has life in it. Don’t expect an overnight sensation…haha!
Until next time!
Kummbareh Owens, wife, mother of 3, Kitchen Chemist and CEO of EverButter LLC