Because Puerto Ricans are mostly a mixture of Spanish, African and Indian cultures, the genetic combination of hair types ranges widely from the baby fine, straight hair to the tight, course and curly hair types. Each type of hair texture requires different care, especially in the humid climate of Puerto Rico.
African-Black Hair Care
This hair type is generally more dry, course, brittle and curlier than other types of hair. Massaging the scalp on a regular basis is recommended to stimulate oil production and distribute it through dry hair. Daily shampooing is not recommended, as it will wash away natural oils. Instead, shampoo only every three to seven days. Wash hair using only water and occasionally using a mild shampoo with a low pH level after sweat-producing activities. Rub hair in only one direction when washing it to avoid tangling. Wash hair only with warm water, never hot. Use a moisturizing conditioner after shampooing hair. Gently massage either Shea butter, Emu, Jojoba or Castor oil into moist hair, and comb it through with a wide toothed comb to the end of hair.
Biracial or Tri-racial Hair Care
This type of hair care is often more difficult to figure out than African-black hair, since there are a wider variety of textures and needs. It usually looks dull and dry, and suffers mostly from frizziness and difficulty in combing. Some textures are kinkier than others, causing the hair to break more often, causing split ends. Use a wide toothed comb or pick, or a hair brush made for African-black hair. Use a good moisturizing shampoo and cream conditioner. Use detangling lotions or sprays. Wear satin sleep hats at night whenever possible. Spritz the hair with some water for easier combing. Always start to comb at the ends of the hair and work your way up to the roots instead of starting at the roots. Consider washing your hair more often than once a week, but not daily. If possible, due to humid weather conditions, rinse with warm water in between washes and always use hair conditioner. Deep condition hair once or twice a month with hot oil. Moisturize hair as you would African-black hair. Use anti-frizz lotions.
Straight Caucasian or Indian Hair Care
Many times this hair can be fine and limp. Though it’s the shiniest and softest of hair textures, it may be difficult to curl. Make sure to use light and mild shampoos and conditioners that will not weigh hair down. Clarifying shampoos and conditioners are great for this hair texture. Do not overuse hair curling products.
Hair Tips for All Hair Types
Trim hair ends to keep split hairs in check. Avoid using hair products with alcohol. Blot with a towel instead of rubbing your hair. Avoid using too much heat on hair. Use swim caps whenever swimming in pools or at the beach. Use fingers or a pick to untangle knots from wet hair while it dries. Take extra care when you use hair curling, hair relaxing and hair dying products.