Braidouts were my staple style through my transition. But ever since my big chop, I had not been able to achieve the tight crimps like I used to (twistouts have also been a DISASTUH, but that's another story). I began to feel like my hair was meant for wash-n-go's almost exclusively, but I need more styles that will lessen tangles and breakage. Thanks to tips from the lovely ladies at HappyCurls, today I had my first semi-successful braidout on my natural hair!
Last night, I shampooed with Trader Joe's Nourish Spa Shampoo, conditioned & detangled with a blend of conditioners including TJ Nourish Spa Conditioner, Moisture Maniac & Pantene Relaxed and Natural conditioner and rinsed thoroughly. While still in the shower, I applied castor oil and SheaMoisture Shea Butter Leave-in and rinsed again (rinsing oily/buttery products really helps them to adhere to my hair).
While my hair was still dripping wet, I started braiding. No parts other than my main side part and no further detangling. The biggest mistake I was making before was detangling while braiding. I didn't realize I needed my curl pattern to help form the crimps. I added more Shea Butter leave-in as needed. I had a spray bottle with water handy but my hair stayed wet without any additional spritzing. I ended up with about 25 small to medium braids. I sat under the dryer for a few minutes and went to sleep. In the morning, I could tell they were still a bit damp but I took them down anyway. I ended up with loose crimps but I still had nice definition even in my frizzy crown hair. I fluffed at the roots and was very pleased with the results.