|

Best Practices for Stretching Kinky Hair

Last updated on May 27th, 2023 at 01:58 pm

Stretching kinky hair and keeping it stretched is critical to retaining length. While our afro textured hair is beautiful in its natural shrunken state and blown out, the blown out state definitely has an edge over the shrunken state. That edge is all about retaining length.

stretching kinky hair

There’s no shortage of methods for stretching kinky hair. These include:

  • The banding method
  • African threading
  • Blow drying
  • Roller and rod setting
  • Braiding
  • Twist and pinning
  • Satin/Silk stretching
  • Using non-heat stretching hair tools like Afri-threaders and the now defunct, SSK plates
  • Using Curlformers

The method you choose to stretch with isn’t of the greatest concern. It’s the prepping of your hair and how you handle it when stretching that is.

Each of the methods above are heat free except for blow drying. If you blow dry with a RevAir, then you won’t need to worry about heat damage the way you would with standard blow dryers. Yet, even when doing gentle heat stretching, there are practices to heed.

How to Stretch Kinky Curly Hair

When stretching your kinky hair (especially if you have fine natural hair) keep these factors in mind (we’ll go into them in more detail down below):

Sectioning

The first practice to be mindful of when stretching out your curls is to work in sections. You will get the best stretch when you work in sections.

Having too many hairs “bundled” together will not allow for even stretching of your curls. So, always work in sections. Also, make sure your sections aren’t too large.

If you heat stretch, you’ll find yourself going over the section more times than is actually necessary. If you use a non-heat method, your results won’t be as desirable (depending on how much stretch you’re looking to get)

Salon Quality Hair Clips: https://amzn.to/3CNZBZQ

Detangling

detangled hair
Using Ominira Naturals Tangle Slayer to detangle

Connected to stretching is detangling. In fact, you can do both simultaneously depending on your method of stretching.

If you are stretching your hair on wash day, make sure you fully detangle your hair after cleansing it.

Before you even begin to stretch kinky curly hair, you want to make sure it’s fully detangled. Attempting to stretch your hair before it’s detangled, will also not give you the best results.

When your hair is fully detangled, you will get a more consistent stretch. Detangling also includes removing shed hairs which leads to additional tangling if allowed to remain.

Dry vs. Wet Stretching

When stretching kinky hair, it can be done on dry hair or wet hair. You actually don’t want to stretch soaking wet hair. That can cause breakage. Instead, stretch damp hair.

There’s definitely things to consider with each method:

Dry StretchingWet Damp Stretching
– Works pretty quickly with bands and heat
(can be done in as little as 20 minutes)
– Heat can quickly ruin the style if you over-stretch
– Doesn’t work as well with rollers/curlers/satin strips
– When braiding/twisting, results can be inconsistent
– Usually needs to be done over night until fully dry
– Hair is in a slightly more fragile state
– Must be careful not to re-tangle the hair
– Wash ‘n Go curls appear different from natural curl pattern

As you can see, there’s definitely pros and cons between dry and damp stretching naturally curly hair. The amount of time you have to accomplish the task is the biggest determining factor. The second biggest factor is the tools you have on hand to get the job done.

Oiling When Using Heat

stretching curly hair with heat
Grab you a RevAir at a discount here: https://revair.pxf.io/finehairfaith with code FINEHAIR10

While many ladies choose to avoid heat (with good reason) when stretching their hair, I’ve found that using the reverse air hair dryer by RevAir has cut down all the concerns:

  • greatly reduces the amount of heat used (I’ve been using this device for 2 years with no heat damage)
  • accelerates the stretching process (the drying process too)

If you want to fully stretch out your kinky hair (eliminating nearly all texture) for a nice blow out, then RevAir is the gold standard tool to achieve that.

If you are like me and opt to blow stretch your hair with a little heat, add the practice of oiling your strands. Oiling your hair helps smooth the cuticle and add shine.

stretching kinky hair

Stretching kinky hair is one of the best ways to retain length because it reduces tangling and helps protect your hair from breakage. The methods shared above for how to stretch natural hair can help you to add this hair practice to your regimen seamlessly.

Share with friends!

Similar Posts

2 Comments

  1. I’m trying to purchase a set of sss no heat plates and clamps
    Where online to buy

    1. in the article I mention they are no longer available. You may be able to find some similar plates online if you Google though

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.