By Chin­we of Hair and Health

Like some of you, I have a sen­si­tive hair­line. Do not be fooled by the thick edges. Lol. My hair­line has had a cou­ple weak moments over the years, so I con­sis­tent­ly mon­i­tor the area and give it extra TLC to keep it healthy. Here are some tips that have helped me and may help you:

1. Minimize pulling the hair back too tight

Pulling the hair back taut­ly caus­es ten­sion along the hair­line and may result in bro­ken hairs or hair loss over time. Styles in which the hair is pulled back should be worn min­i­mal­ly and/or loose­ly. Because of my sen­si­tive hair­line, I opt for loose, pinned updos that allow my hair­line to breathe and stay away from tight buns. If the style hurts, then lis­ten to your hair­line.

2. Opt for a polyester/silk pillow case instead of a silk scarf

Polyester/silk scarves worn while you sleep can dam­age the hair­line if tied tight­ly. Your edges will be hap­pier if you sleep on a polyester/silk pil­low case or wrap the scarf (if it’s large enough) around your pil­low. Anoth­er option is to sleep in a polyester/silk bon­net, but beware of the ones that expose the elas­tic. Whichev­er method you choose, you can wrap a scarf around your edges for a few min­utes in the morn­ing to lay them down, undo the scarf, and you’re good to go. It’s health­ier than sleep­ing with a scarf around your edges all night long. (NOTE: Poly­ester and silk come in sat­in, charmeuse, chif­fon, and oth­er weaves. Opt for sat­in or charmeuse, which are smooth weaves.)

3. Apply natural butters/oils and then massage 2–5x a week

This is par­tic­u­lar­ly impor­tant for a recov­er­ing hair­line. Nat­u­ral but­ters (e.g., man­go, shea) and oils (e.g., coconut, olive, cas­tor) con­tain sub­stances that can soothe and nour­ish the scalp along the edges. For exam­ple, shea but­ter and man­go but­ter con­tain Vit­a­m­in A, which plays an impor­tant part in the growth and main­te­nance of the fol­li­cles. Addi­tion­al­ly, mas­sag­ing the hair­line may stim­u­late growth.

4. Don’t sleep in a ponytail, bun, or updo

If your hair­line is sen­si­tive, this is the worst thing you can do it. Trust me; I’ve been there. As you toss and turn at night, pulling can occur and your hair­line can suf­fer. Some wom­en can get away with this, but if you have a sen­si­tive hair­line, it is best to just sleep with your hair wrapped (in a bon­net) or in sev­er­al loose and big plaits/twists.

5. Avoid wearing elastic headbands, bandanas, tight scarves too frequently

Once in a while is fine, but dai­ly is prob­a­bly not. Opt for loose scarves instead elas­tic head­bands when you can.

6. Redo the braids/twists along the edges weekly/biweekly

Exten­sions or not, this is essen­tial for a sen­si­tive hair­line.

7. Don’t make the braids/twists too small and tight along the hairline

Ladies, do you have a sen­si­tive hair­line? How do you deal?


Empow­er­ing wom­en of col­or to break bar­ri­ers. Cherish.Thy.Melanin.

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31 Comments on "7 Tips for Dealing with a Sensitive Hairline"

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[…] By Chin­we of Black Girl Long Hair […]

Sandy Clarke-Rivera

Can some­one please tell me what is the best kind of scarf to use dur­ing the win­ter? After every win­ter I find that my hair is dam­aged at the back because I can hear And feel it being snapped by the scarf.


They say using an old t-shirt will keep your hair from get­ting frizzy when dry­ing it. I’m sure you could cut up an old t-shirt and it would work well.

Sarah Del Rosario

I learned a lot from your arti­cle, I used to sleep with my pony­tail and didn’t notice that my hair­line becomes thin, every­thing that you men­tioned here hit me big time. But now I know what the real prob­lem with my hair­line and I can now avoid them using all of your tips.

My hair line has given so much trou­ble i’ve been nat­u­ral for three years and from ear­ly on start­ed using Cas­tor oil long sto­ry short i’ve tried every pro­duct that has hair­line tem­ple on the title but just have to come to terms with just hav­ing a extreme­ly sen­si­tive hair­line that needs no manip­u­la­tions. I have braids at the moment and am just ask­ing God to let the­se days pass by fast so I can mark it as my last attempt in rock­ing sin­gle braids rather have my hair in chunky twists. Even my moth­er at some point told me… Read more »
Binta Jalloh

Try tak­ing biot­in the 1,000mcg a day and use Jamaican black cas­tor oil.


Very good read. I think i’ll try some of the­se tips. My hair­line is going and I feel like the world in about to end. I have been nat­u­ral my whole life (26 years), n it’s only since about 3 years ago i start­ed pay­ing atten­tion to it because it was always good, no prob­lems :-( Any good ideas as well on how I can soft­en my hair? any­body?, some­body.…. think i am a 4b and c

Imade Iyamu

I’m most­ly 4c & it works for me when I keep it stretched & mois­tur­ized. I.e. Put put water+oil+Shea but­ter and braid it up. If you take it down the next morn­ing it feels like a cloud. Mois­ture alone is cool but stretch­ing every night elim­i­nates any need for detan­gling for me. ?


Take a look on YT look up baggy/greenhouse method there is lots of dif­fer­ent exam­ples of how to do this treat­ment. I have been doing it for 2 weeks its been good for keep­ing my hair mois­turised espe­cial­ly over the cold months.


Hello.Thanks for this post.My hair­line is real­ly damaged,thin and scanty.I intend braid­ing my hair with exten­sions soon and I’ve. Been think­ing of telling the styl­ist not to braid my hair­line at all,but with your post,it seems I have to.Any sug­ges­tions on what you think I should do to my hair­line while the styl­ist does the braids.


[…] By Chin­we of Hair and Health […]

I am new­ly tran­si­tion­ing my short pix­ie cut to nat­u­ral hair. My last relax­er was Jan­u­ary 2013 and I touched up my edges in March 2013. I decid­ed I was going to go nat­u­ral after I real­ized that my edges were dam­aged, more on one side than the oth­er. I got micro braids as a pro­tec­tive style, then let my hair rest a few weeks and got a sew in. I just took the sew in out and I am feel­ing some sore­ness at the tem­ple and my edges on one side of my head. Nev­er had this issue before… Read more »


I have locs and I am look­ing for nice hair­styles but as my hair is very fine, my edges are dam­aged and I don t have locks on my tem­pers anymore…so I am look­ing for nice hair­styles that don’t involve braids or twists and that take in account my edges. Thanks in advance.

mogotsi m k

Go for crotch­et dread locks no chem­i­cals are used or twist only crotch­et


How do I keep my hair­line healthy when I braid most of the time? What should I apply (nat­u­ral)?


I have learn to not put pres­sure on my thin­ning hair­line. I think putting a tiny bit of cas­tor oil on your hair­line will help to thick­en it also.

Jo Somebody

My hair­line at the front and sides are per­fect­ly fine because they are resilient, my nape how­ev­er is ridicu­lous! I nev­er real­ly know how to pro­tect it. Even when I wear a scarf it rides up at the back. I know some peo­ple [say] corn­row or flat twist the nape and style the rest of their hair nor­mal­ly, but I can’t flat twist or corn­row yet! Boo!


Absolute­ly love the col­or. I was going to do a sim­i­lar col­or bero­fe it all fell out, but it’s get­ting so thin now that I think I might just cut it all off. I don’t know how some of my oth­er chemo friends have been deal­ing with their re-growth–my friend Priscilla’s grew back so nice and pret­ty that she didn’t have to do any­thing with it (lucky duck). Have fun with the new col­or!


I have a sen­si­tive hair­line due to chem­i­cal dam­age from a hair relax­er I got in mid­dle school. To care for my sen­si­tive hair­line I do the fol­low­ing:
–apply a cas­tor oil/peppermint essen­tial oil blend to my hair­line every cou­ple of days
–smooth my hair with my hands, DIY Flax Seed Gel and a sat­in scarf for buns or puffs

The­se steps have not reversed the dam­age but have made liv­ing with it less wor­ri­some.

P.S. The fact that I do not wear fake hair (extensions/weaves/wigs/etc.), col­or my hair and (very rarely) use heat helps as well.

Lady B

Thanks for this great post! My hair­line is beyond destroyed and I am guilty of doing the fol­low­ing of your NO NO’s–

1) Putting my hair up with an elas­tic band that does not feel exact­ly loose
2) Not redo­ing my corn­rows along my hair­line fre­quent­ly

I real­ly, real­ly need to work on this as although I stopped the weaves, I did a corn­row style recent­ly that took even more of my hair­line- aaaaaAAAAAAAARGH…


OT, but I won­der what that mod­el (Tomika Fraser) uses on her hair?? We have the same tex­ture, but her hair always looks so soft and pli­able. No fair…


Indeed, they would be appalled! What ever hanepepd to thread­ing and puff puff? @ MsLuffa: Tell me about it. Actu­allt start­ed research­ing placed that could out teh hair on a weft! muhaha@ Big Broth­er: Why pay more eh?!


Great tips .…. Can you post some­thing for going nat­u­ral from processed hair?

Coconut And Cream

Yes Yes Yes! This is so true in every form!


Ha! My daugh­ter would LOVE this!! She (6yrs old) makes a make-shift ftee­har in her hair with her boa ftee­hars and a gator clip. She fig­ured this out all on her own (I was very impressed) but now I know the cor­rect way. She will flip. This woul be a great gift for her for Christ­mas. Thanks so much. Also, thanks so much for link­ing up to Strict­ly Home­made Tues­day!

Khadija Jones

I just cre­at­ed my very own revi­tal­iz­ing hair balm. Great for thin spots! Shea but­ter, rose mary oil, emu oil, jamaican black cas­tor, jojoba oil. All mixed into a creamy balm. 

Mas­sage into bald/thin spots twice dai­ly (morning/night) WITH CLEAN HANDS!


I have a very bad sen­si­tive hairline,can any­one help me with a good cream can I used,please this hair­line it makes me wor­ried every­day I think about it.

Yes!! this seems to be a big issue I’m see­ing late­ly with nat­u­rals and black wom­en in gen­er­al. It seems that although we claim to be proud of the fact that we are now embrac­ing our God-given kinks and curls, we still have a need for the edges to be plas­tered down! I just watched a youtube video of one of my fav nat­u­ral vlog­gers to see that she now has bare­ly there edges from all the slick­ing down and tight updos…Not only that but in this video she once again pro­ceed­ed to plas­ter them down with gel, stat­ing that… Read more »


I’d been wear­ing a lot of pulled-back styles over the last few months and while I knew not to pull back my front too tight­ly, I neglect­ed to pay atten­tion to the hair­line near my ears where the head­band often rest­ed. So I start­ed see­ing a bit of thin­ning there, which I’m rem­e­dy­ing main­ly by not wear­ing pulled-back styles. Can I add anoth­er bit of advice for those of us with sen­si­tive hair­li­nes? Let go of the need to have per­fect­ly smooth and neat edges. I’ve said for years that it’s bet­ter to have nap­py edges than NO edges…if you… Read more »