kara natural hair

by Kara of Nat­u­ral­Curli­esTV (pic­tured above)

Break­age, shed­ding and thin­ning I have expe­ri­enced them all! I am almost 100% sure that most of you have expe­ri­enced at least of one them. I am going to give you a run­down of times in my life when I have expe­ri­enced break­age, thin­ning and shed­ding and how I man­aged to resolve them.
Vis­it­ing the hair hair­dresser was a reg­u­lar trip for me before I decid­ed to embark on my healthy hair jour­ney. Each time I went it was the same sto­ry. The hair­dresser would say, “your hair is break­ing you know,” and look down at my kinky hair dis­pleased like he was doing me a favour for hav­ing to deal with it. I would think to my myself yes my hair is break­ing but are you going to help me resolve this and what is caus­ing my hair to break. After he had mas­sa­cred my hair by cut­ting inch­es and inch­es of hair each time I vis­it­ed, I waved good­bye and set out on my jour­ney to healthy nat­u­ral hair.

I noticed there was a par­tic­u­lar sec­tion of my hair, just below the crown, that was a lot short­er than the rest. But to be hon­est, I was suf­fer­ing from what I call ‘glob­al break­age’ or break­age all over that gives the impres­sion your hair doesn’t grow past a cer­tain length. I researched and used YouTube to find ways to res­ur­rect my hair and soon learned my hair was break­ing and not able to retain length due to the lack of mois­ture. Below are the­se are the tips I fol­lowed to stop the break­age in its tracks:

Deep con­di­tion­ing: This was done on a week­ly basis, using a pro­duct which was meant for deep con­di­tion­ing. I always applied heat by sit­ting under a hood­ed dry­er for up to an hour.

Water: I drank lots of water and I sat­u­rat­ed my hair with water week­ly. Water is the best mois­ture you can give your hair.

Seal: I learned very quick­ly that seal­ing in what­ev­er mois­ture you apply is high­ly impor­tant, if you do not do this it is just defeat­ing the pur­pose. Shea but­ter was my best friend and still is, as it acts as a ter­ri­fic sealant.

If you are doing all the­se things and your hair is still break­ing, then there may be lifestyle fac­tors to con­sid­er. I know that if I have slight break­age, it is down to low iron lev­els in which case I start to eat more foods that are rich in iron, I will also take a B12 sup­ple­ment.
Kara natural hair profile

kara natural hair beach puff
We all shed hair in fact I believe it to be 100–150 per day which sounds like a lot right? I have only expe­ri­enced post-natal shed­ding which was in excess, I lost hair from the tem­ple area on both sides. Each time I began to fin­ger detan­gle I noticed that my hair was ridicu­lous­ly tan­gled to the point where it seemed mat­ted. My ini­tial thought was to get a pair of scis­sors and chop it off. How­ev­er, I just had to take a deep breath and begin the tedious task of slow­ly releas­ing each shed hair, strand by strand! It took forever.

On three sep­a­rate occa­sions, I washed my hair and shed so much that when I final­ly fin­ished, I was more or less bald on both sides. Post-natal shed­ding didn’t wor­ry me because I knew why it was hap­pen­ing. If you are unex­plain­ably shed­ding large amounts of hair, I would seek help from a pro­fes­sion­al.

Some things I did to help with post-natal shed­ding were scalp mas­sages to increase cir­cu­la­tion and apply­ing Jamaican black cas­tor oil to my tem­ple area

kara natural hair ponytail puff
I expe­ri­enced thin­ning when I was a teen back in high school, I thought I looked cute with my eyes look­ing like they had been pinned back to my ears due to such tight styling. I can laugh about it now, but if I hadn’t stopped pulling my hair into ridicu­lous­ly tight styles, I could have caused dam­age to the fol­li­cles lead­ing to my hair not being able to grow back. Thank­ful­ly, the thin­ning was slight so my hair grew back with­out any prob­lems.

Thin­ning doesn’t only have to occur from tight­styling or a bad weave on the edges of our hair, it can also occur through­out the head. Typ­i­cal­ly, you will notice a change in thick­ness; again this can be relat­ed to stress, diet or med­ica­tion. Let’s not for­get that as we age our hair will begin to lose its thick­ness. It’s just part of the age­ing process.


What have you done to deal with your break­age, shed­ding or thin­ning share your tips below?

Kara is a Lon­don-based health pro­fes­sion­al who teach­es indi­vid­u­als with phys­i­cal and men­tal health dis­abil­i­ties how to live inde­pen­dent­ly. She is also an active nat­u­ral hair vlog­ger. You can find her on YouTube at Nat­u­ral­Curli­esTV and Insta­gram @NaturalCurlies

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31 Comments on "Breakage, Shedding & Thinning: How I Overcame All 3 to Achieve Waist-Length Hair"

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Niki Poo

I have thin­ning and break­age hair due to anti­de­pres­sant use and a med­i­cine called zan­tac. Is there any way that I could still get my hair healthy and back to nor­mal regard­less of what i’m tak­ing? I’m aware of the side effects of the­se med­i­ci­nes but I have to take them.


apply cas­tor oil to your hair dai­ly and for your tem­ple areas mix cas­tor oil and rose­mary oil

Latia forest
My hair when I wear it out rather it be wash in go, twist out, or blown out it looks very like see through. There isn’t any heat dam­age. I start­ed grow­ing my hair hair out for two and a half years now from a lit­tle bit above shoul­der length and it is now at bra strap length. While I was grow­ing it out I used wigs to grow my hair under­neath. I’m not sure why my hair looks the way that it does I take care of it with healthy ingre­di­ents. Also there isn’t any line of demar­ca­tion where… Read more »

It might be your detan­gling method (tools can thin your hair out some­times), but it might also be that you have nat­u­ral­ly low den­si­ty hair. 

Is it stretched in this pho­to? I have a patch that looks a bit like that when it’s stretched. The hair in the area is per­fect­ly healthy, and it grows just fine…but you can see through it if I bun a braid­out and then take it down. And I don’t use tools, so…

Latia forest
Yes my hair at that point was stretched and that is a great point at one point I was using a poor comb. If the poor comb is the rea­son why wouldn’t I see a new growth of thick­er hair in my scalp grow­ing out. And yes I would say my hair is a bit more on the low den­si­ty side but I can’t remem­ber my hair ever look­ing like this I’ve had long hair in the past. Also I notice it only starts to look like this when I stretch out my hair. For exam­ple when I wash it… Read more »

In wash n gos the hair is shrunk­en so it is more dense with stretched styles which may be why you cant see through you wash n gos

Ive expe­ri­enced alot of shed­ding and break­age. Ive added a mul­ti­vi­t­a­m­in and a high qual­i­ty iron vit­a­m­in to my reg­i­men. Also I real­ized that my hair was break­ing from being over mois­tur­ized. So Ive start­ed to incor­po­rate a pro­tein treat­ment (aphogee) every 4–6weeks. Its helped tremen­dous­ly with the break­age and Ive noticed that the shed­ding goes back to nor­mal almost imme­di­ate­ly after the treat­ment. The iron vit­a­m­in has helped sig­nif­i­cant­ly with my shed­ding as well. btw-I did go to the doc­tor before start­ing to ran­dom­ly take vit­a­mins and my tests showed that I was extreme­ly low in iron-despite drink­ing fresh… Read more »

You can over­mois­tur­ize your hair? I didn’t know that. I prob­a­bly sound stu­pid. :)


This was a great read. Thank you for the tips. I too expe­ri­enced post-natal shed­ding in the tem­ple areas and it took a few months to start grow­ing back.
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If you are hav­ing prob­lems with thinning,breakage and shedding,and you have tried every­thing, then it may­be due to oth­er fac­tors like low iron lev­els med­ica­tion, hor­mones and oth­er chron­ic health con­di­tions like sick­le and dia­betes etc.

Ok so nat­u­ral hair is my pas­sion. It real­ly is. It’s my favorite hob­by and I devote a LOT of time to think­ing about it and doing exper­i­ments on my head and poor Shang­haied fam­i­ly mem­bers. On shed­ding. My mom has thin hair and was shed­ding an exces­sive amount. It was thin around the tem­ples and right in the front-no hid­ing that. So she went on a reg­i­men of scalp mas­sages, inver­sion method, and green­house method. She used Aloe Vera Jel­ly (Lily of the desert brand which is impor­tant don’t go cheap) because the JELLY pen­e­trates 3 lay­ers of skin… Read more »

I agree. I lived in Flori­daand com­plained about humid­i­ty but i think it aid­ed in keep­ing your hair nat­u­ral­ly mois­tur­ized. I cur­rent­ly live in Rhode island and my hair is so thin.


You have me want­i­ng to some research on the green­house method & this autum­nal moult!


Green­Beau­ty­Chan­nel on You Tube is where I learned about the autum­nal moult. In her 4 part Growth and Behav­ior of Hair series. On the Green­house method my mom watched so many she can’t remem­ber which video she fol­lowed and her com­put­er got tak­en out by a virus so (watch out for Stream TV!! 3 Nasty virus­es! 2 got caught by her secu­ri­ty) …if it can be fixed I’ll put which You Tube chan­nel she choose to fol­low. Hap­py Research­ing! :D


I’m cur­rent­ly strug­gling with TE Alope­cia it is very frus­trat­ing my hair is thin­ning on the sides and looks like the first pic­ture shown here very thin.…which isn’t cute at all…I went to see a der­ma­tol­o­gist but the med­i­cine isn’t help­ing. I too have thoughts of chop­ping it all off because I put in so much work and have tried every­thing but to see so much fall out is very dis­ap­point­ing so I under­stand your strug­gle com­plete­ly.


Nice tips!


Ok my sto­ry is a bit unortho­dox but I start­ed grow­ing my hair in 2010 but it just did not grow, I swear I tried EVERYTHING but I just reached a point where I was so frus­trat­ed and dis­heart­ened that I just prayed..that was ear­ly this year, I was just like “God I have tried every­thing, my hair is not grow­ing, I need your help-be my hair­dresser”, ok so after that, my hair has been grow­ing, I haven’t changed my regimen…sometimes you nev­er know, but it is nice to know that He cares about my hair.


This is the truth. I told some­one the same thing once and they were like “what I don’t think it’s right to pray for some­thing like that…” 

You receive not because you ask not


Sure, so many tragedies in the world but God should be con­cerned about your hair. 

smh–some Black wom­en and their hair issues


Some black wom­en??? Who are you? It’s ok to pray about our hair!!!


He is con­cerned about us as a whole and not in parts. He is a BIG GOD!!!!!…beyond our imag­i­na­tion.


Ask, Believe, Receive, That’s my mot­to!


True Talk R!!!
I’ve been exact­ly in that spot you stood. I did E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G I knew to do, and wait­ed long peri­ods to see if it worked… And on and on.
2,3 years no real growth — I just got to a place where I said ‘Jesus take the wheels’… I even found a few scrip­tures that showed ‘God GIVES hair’ — to wom­en (1Cor11:15), to Absa­lom etc.
I’m final­ly see­ing some new growth now, and I think my edges too are begin­ning at last, to fill in. My roomamte also noticed.
Strange but true.
I feel you, R!!!

Lauren Beasley

What deep con­di­tion­er do you rec­om­mend? I’m still look­ing for one that is real­ly mois­tur­iz­ing & helps with my dam­aged hair.


She said she will start tak­ing a vit­a­m­in B12 sup­ple­ment but a reg­u­lar mul­ti­vi­t­a­m­in con­tains all the B vit­a­mins, includ­ing 100% dv of b12. The mul­ti­vi­t­a­m­in I take con­tains vit­a­m­in D3, vit­a­m­in A, all of the vit­a­m­in B’s, biot­in, and min­er­als like sele­ni­um, sil­i­ca etc.. It even has cop­per and boron like most mul­ti­vi­t­a­mins. A B12 sup­ple­ment alone isn’t going to work as good as a reg­u­lar mul­ti­vi­t­a­m­in or pre­na­tal vit­a­mins. I love prenan­tals because they con­tain col­la­gen.


My ends have been a lit­tle dry but it hasn’t real­ly start­ed break­ing yet. How do i keep it from a full out break­ing???. I clipped my ends but like i said it wasn’t real­ly break­ing off yet.


You should try mist­ing your ends/hair with water. I mist my hair with water twice a day and cov­er with a plas­tic bag while dress­ing for work or in the evening. My hair isn’t sat­u­rat­ed just light­ly mist­ed.


I’d rec­om­mend spritz­ing them dai­ly and then using a but­ter and oil whip to seal in the mois­ture. I like to use glyc­er­in + aloe vera juice + water and I make a shea whip with shea + coconut oil + cas­tor oil. My pro­por­tions are here http://bit.ly/UGEcL4 but it’s good to exper­i­ment and find what works best with your type of hair. My hair is coarse and thick so heavy stuff works well but if you have fin­er hair you may want to use oils like apri­cot or avo­cado and use but­ters like man­go or cocoa.


This was real­ly help­ful. I think I’m expe­ri­enc­ing glob­al break­age as my length has been stag­nant.

I’m a big fan of deep con­di­tion­ing with clay. So far my expe­ri­ence for my coarse hair is that rhas­soul is good for strength­en­ing and kaolin clay is very gen­tle. Clay paired with hon­ey real­ly can’t be beat in terms of con­di­tion­ing. I’ll def­i­nite­ly try doing it week­ly to improve the health of my hair. My favorite recipes are here http://bit.ly/WRMp0G. Thanks!


We dont have to accept thin­ning hair as we age. I know i will not accept it!


I’m 57 so what can I do for thin­ning in crown and back. I’m very self costars about my hair.