March 24, 2009


Being tenderheaded can mean painful experiences when we are grooming our hair and more importantly our children's hair. I remember having my hair combed on Saturday Mornings and hating it. It was painful and my hair broke countless combs with my mom's attempts to detangle my hair, trying to comb my hair while dry was a horror. I have learned so much since than.
A tenderhead means that the scalp is sensitive to tension and to ingredients in many hair care products. Having a simple routine with minimum manipulation of the hair is best.
  • Avoid tension: Hairstyles that involve tension should be avoided or kept to a minimum (cornrows, braid extensions, weave, tight ponytails, etc).
  • Avoid tension to the hairline: This is important, just because the interior hair is not tightly style it doesn't mean that their isn't any tension to the hair line. Asking the person who's hair you are styling if it feels tight around the hairline is an excellent way to avoid hair loss and inflamed hair follicles.
  • Don't maintain the same hair style for an extended time: This can vary from person to person. For me I have to cleanse my hair every week and most of the time that means taking out my hairstyle.
  • Cleanse, condition and treat on a regular basis: I cleanse once a week, do a deep treatment every one to two weeks and do treatments (oil or protein) every month to three months
  • Use hair accessories that limit friction and damage to the hair: I love the Goody Ouchless Collection of accessories because they do not make their products with metal clamps which limits tangles, and breakage; A wide tooth comb, a boar brush for smoothing and my hair's best friends, my hands.
  • Avoid products/ingredients that cause dry scalp, flaking, bumps on the scalp and redness (sulfates and alcohol), or any products that after you use it you notice your scalp is very sensitive.
Products for Tenderheads
Water: Using water when detangling hair is a must
Condition, condition, condition: You can't get enough of this product. It should be the most common product you have (I stock pile conditioners)
Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize: Moisturizing the hair and scalp maintains pliability to the hair.
Apple Cidar Vinegar: Brings the ph balance back to the scalp (mix with water)
Neem Seed Oil: Great for soothing the scalp and adding a natural luster to hair (hot oil treatments mixed with Peppermint and Rosemary EOs)
Jojoba Oil: Jojoba oil mimics the natural sebum that our scalp produces and is a good lubricant for the scalp

Tenderheaded: A Comb-Bending Collection of Hair Stories (Paperback) by Pamela Johnson


Laquita said...

Great post - one of my little clients is very tenderheaded and you are so right about using water - I have to spray every section of her hair before braiding or twisting.

I also find that even though her hair appears to be very thick and is tightly coiled - it is super fragile and the slightest tension will cause her scalp to reden (sp). Although it takes forever to do a simple set of twists on her little head patience is also a big help.

BTW: I loved the Tenderheaded book - I need to fish it out and re-read :o)

Nu Kynk said...

I feel her pain, our hair can be deceiving... we dont have tuff heads as some would think:)

Stephanie Taylor said...

I remember absolutely hating the times my mom would attempt to comb through my thick, waist length hair. Looking back on those moments, I often wonder what, if anything, could have been done to lessen the horror of what could have been a bonding moment between daughter and mother. Not only will I use your tips in general for my hair now (you are so thorough and concise…love it!), I definitely will keep this in mind if/when I have my own little ones!

Stephanie Taylor
Promotions and Account Representative

Nu Kynk said...


Np:) Thanks for the love!