As a woman with natural curly hair, I like to collect all the hair care tips that I can get. And, I say that because it took me until I was in my twenties to like my curly hair and to wear it consistently.
Now that I’m a mother, I’m very into what products go in my child’s hair and how we keep it together. Cannon has curly hair and a lot of it. Not only does he have a lot of it, but it can be hard to tame every now and then.
When I was pregnant, I already knew that he was going to have a lot of hair. There was no way that he wasn’t going to especially if you look at all this hair on my head. Plus, his dad was born with a head full of hair and my 24-hour heartburn proved to bless Cannon’s head.
Nonetheless as a bi-racial women, I did not know what to expect as his dad and I have different textures. And, textures need to be considered with your child. A lot of research has to go into the right products and tools to use on their hair so that their hair can flourish.
Their hair and hair care is a learning process and that is okay. As long as you’re learning, you’re doing it right.
Here are seven key tips that I focus on when it comes to loving and taking care of my baby’s hair.
1. Understand your child’s hair texture.
The most important tip out of all of these tips is understanding your child’s hair texture. Why? Because you want to do the right things to their hair. You want the right products and tools. And, you want to know how your should do it without harming their hair. There are so many textures out there and the same practice can not be applied to them all. My siblings and I (there are four of us) all have different textures — we’re Black and White. Our hair textures are all different from wavy hair to very curly hair, so there are different methods for each of us as our hair reacts different to products. Be your child’s hair advocate and research. You want to know that you’re helping their hair flourish, trust me.
2. Wash their hair once or twice a week.
First, you do not want to overdo it with the washing. Second, it will dry their hair out. There are people that can wash their hair every day but we are not those people. And, I say that in a kind way. Black hair can go a few days without being washed and there’s no harm or foul. By overwashing your child’s hair, you’re going to strip their hair of the natural oils that they are producing. That will lead it to be dry which is what we want to avoid.
Black hair will not smell or look dirty, our hair absorbs the natural oils. Oily hair for us doesn’t happen after a day, give it two or three days before a wash is needed. For shampoo and conditioner, I use the Shea Moisture Mango & Carrot Kids Shampoo and Conditioner — best smelling products ever and they make Cannon’s curls bouncy. From my own experience, I can vouch on never having smelly hair or that it looks dirty and I wash twice a week.
3. Utilize oils like Coconut or Olive oil.
Coconut oil was so clutch for me when Cannon had cradle cap. As a baby, I avoided putting actual products in Cannon’s hair especially because I knew all baby shampoo + body wash combinations weren’t going to do much for him. Did I use them? Yes, but I would follow up with an oil to lock in moisture. It was rare when I used them since I only needed to wet his hair at the time. Plus, I’m very conscious of what I put in his hair. And, you don’t have to use them — you can skip utilizing the baby shampoo + soap combos and go straight to the oil, if you’re all about being natural products. Natural oils do the trick every single time.
4. Create a routine for them.
Routines are important and incorporating a hair care routine can be helpful. How hard is it to add in ‘do hair’ in the morning or night routine? It’s not hard at all. If you’re teaching your child from the beginning, they’re going to take from you and do it themselves. You can make it easy by inserting it after And, I think it’s very helpful to teach them how and when they should do their hair, so they can have that skill. I say that because I know many women that don’t know how to do their own hair because they’ve only had their hair done at the salon (and there’s nothing wrong with that), but you could be saving some money. Invest your time in creating a hair care regimen and get them hooked. I promise you, it’s worth it.
5. Love on their natural hair.
The best thing is compliments. As someone that straightened their curls for years, I still get super smiley when someone comments on my hair and tells me how pretty it is. Build up their confidence when it comes to their hair and looks. Let them know that they’re perfect and they don’t have to conform to society’s standards. Honestly, it’s very important to raise confident children so they love themselves. If you have to stand in the mirror with them in the morning, then do it. There is nothing better than those moments when you share positive comments and see their smiles. Love hard on their natural hair and teach them to love it.
6. Research tools for their hair.
Not every tool that you use can be used in your child’s hair. From brushes and combs to certain hair pieces. Don’t ruin or pull out their hair by trying to throw in a clip that’ll get stuck in their hair. From experience, I will say that you need to make sure the clips and barrettes that you want to put in their hair have to be big. And when it comes to combs, don’t skimp on wide-tooth combs. It’s important that you research and make sure you find the appropriate tools for your little baby’s hair.
If your child’s hair is like my son Cannon’s or mine (3B/3C), I would suggest a Denman brush. They’re amazing if you’re using either during your wash session or right after. Cannon’s curls are always popping after I use this brush and mine are less coily, if that makes sense. Definitely a must-have product if you’re asking me. We love this brush and it’s better than a comb when it comes to him.
7. Invest in a satin cap/pillowcase made for babies.
Regular pillow cases are going to mat your child’s hair up. I say this from experience. Whenever Cannon wakes up and it’s not on a silk pillow case or with his baby du-rag on, the bag of his hair is a frizzy mess. But not only will your child’s hair frizz up, the cotton and linens can do some damage like tangle the hair in knots. Etsy and Amazon will be your best friends when it comes to investing in a cap, silk pillowcase, or du-rag for your child. We tend to stray away from Cannon’s du-rag as I’m a worrywart and I don’t want it to choke him in his sleep. But, a silk pillowcase for when your child is older and can have pillows is perfect.
Everyone’s hair is different and if you have multiple children, you might have to learn more than one technique for each child. I can attest that my sisters and I all have a different hair care routine because of different textures. It takes time, but learning is the one way to get it done.
Do it, and love on that hair. Outside of knowing and understanding texture, love on your child’s natural hair so they will love it. I think that’s the best thing that you can do for your child.
With curly, kinky, coily, or wavy hair, your child can come out with any of the types and you’re going to have to embrace it. Know that every day won’t be the same and sometimes the hair will frizz up before it does what you want. But, you got this. And when they see that you got it and you’re praising them, they’re going to praise themselves. Build your littles up with confidence and self-love.
Make sure they love their natural hair. I promise there is someone out there that is loving it. And if a stranger doesn’t like their hair… okay? Are they taking part in the process? No. And, that’s it.
And mothers of babies of colors, love that natural hair and let your child fully embrace themselves.
For more hair tips, check out my winter haircare routine and my hair transformation tips.
Definitely a must read for mixed/ black babies & children. As an adult I learned just how important is what to get to know my type of hair and how to maintain it.
Donzalee Akiboh says
You were very informative until you suggested that a baby/child any baby/child need a cap satin or otherwise or a du rag to go to bed for their hair. That is wrong and utter nonsense. You should check with your pediatrician.
Hi! Thanks for your feedback. I didn’t state that a baby/child NEEDS a cap or du-rag. It’s a suggestion on investing in a cap, du-rag, or satin pillowcase. What works for my child/family isn’t going to work for everyone and that’s fine.
You must not be black lol. To wrap up your hair at night starts young in the black community.
Love the detail & I took so much from this article 💕💕 love on the natural because lord knows we mothers need the help & patience with these babies hair
Thank you for reading! I totally agree. We need all the help and patience that we can get!
Josie S says
Thank you for this post, it’s definitely needed info. Regarding the Shea Moisture Mango & Carrot Kids Shampoo and Conditioner, is the shampoo tear free?
Hi! Thank you from reading. From research, it looks like they do not make a tear-free claim. It doesn’t say on the bottle and I searched a bit and all I could find was — it do not contain any synthetic ingredients, such as synthetic alkyl polyethoxylates and/or alkyl phenol polyethoxylates, which can be common in tear-free shampoos.
Cynthia Machado says
I need help I have a biracial child and I didn’t know what to use on her and what I did I damaged her hair by washing it every day. When she turned 1 year, her hair changed from curly to dry and it looks afro like. Now she’s 2 years old.
What I want to know is still a chance to fix the her or it is damaged forever?
Hi! I would start with a routine and incorporate products that will moisturize her hair. Hair texture is always going to change. Research oils and products that are for her hair type. I love the SheaMoisture kid line because my son’s hair can get dry and the conditioner really helps out with moisturizing. I deep condition my son’s hair now with the Mielle Organics products. Usually, I wash his hair once a week and deep condition it once a week, I try to space those days out.
Lisa Robinson says
This is sooooo very helpful!!! I have a 17 month old grandson who is mixed with hair very similar to your baby boy… He’s like a glue stick to me nearly 24/7. Lol I have severe allergies to anything olive and strong scents. His mama doesn’t know any more than I do about keeping his hair nice. I decided TODAY I would take over and learn how to fix my babys hair. His mama is white with really good hair his dad has long dreads and has really good hair as well. Hes not so much in the picture 🙄 to teach us anything. Today’s my 1st day brushing his hair… it wasn’t too hard. I used Johnsons conditioner spray. But definitely need the oil for him. Bless his heart ❤ Going to get some coconut oil soon. How often should I brush/comb it on a daily? Or should i put oil in and kinda use my hands?
This is so helpful. I have been looking into bonnets for my baby girl that’s on the way. I’m worried about her sleeping with one on if it’s a hazard. When is usually a good time to start?
We started around 3 years old, just because of the fear. At 3, my son can rip it off if it bothers him and his head is not as small.