Stretching my Natural Hair- 2 methods

Combating shrinkage can be not only challenging but downright annoying. There are many blog posts and videos on the internet that describe various methods of dealing with this phenomenon and of the many ideas I have studied I have narrowed it down to two basic methods that work best for me. The first method is banding and the second method combines banding with the use of heat.

Method 1 Banding – This technique involves the use of goodie bands on wet or dry hair evenly spaced along a ponytail. Personally this is my favorite method because it can be done effortlessly.  I am a wet ‘bander’, which means I would shampoo or co-wash my hair and gather it into a low single ponytail or two ponytails as demonstrated in the picture. I add my goodie hair bands equally spaced down the length of my ponytail(s) applying a little Ecostyler gel to the crown of my hair to smooth my hair and stretch the crown. The next day I will loosen my ponytail(s) fluff my hair and voila! Stretched hair!

Method 2 Heat Stretching – Using heat to stretch my hair is the fastest method by far that I can use to obtain maximum elongation.  You have the option of using a blow dryer and blow the roots of the hair tugging at it to keep the tension while the dryer stretches the hair. I however, prefer to use a flat iron.  Heat stretching for me starts with method 1 described above so I am starting with medium stretched hair. I describe the process below:

– I start out with stretched hair from method 1; I separate my hair in four and work on each section separately.

-I ensure my hair is well oiled and moisturized with my combination ‘oil creation’ of olive oil, castor oil and safflower oil

-I then use my flat iron on chunks of my hair (not too small not too big) I pass the flat iron over the chunk once or twice not straightening my hair because I want to keep some texture. (The flat iron is at about the 250 heat setting)


This picture above shows the left side of my hair slightly shrunken and the right side comparibly stretched after using my flat iron.

In the photo above I have successfully stretched both sides of my hair using the flat iron – results, big stretched, textured hair! I would recommend this method if you need a quick means of stretching your hair for an event or a date.  Oh! And stay away from moisture.

That’s it!

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