Once you have braids styled into your hair, you want them to last as long as possible. Braids with extensions can be pricey, so knowing how to care for your braided hairstyle at home will make it last longer. Braids are such a low-maintenance style that you'll have very little upkeep once they're in place. Whether braids are created using your natural hair or hair extensions, caring for them on a daily basis is easy. Proper braid maintenance ensures a great look for the duration of the style.
Pull braids into a loose ponytail before going to bed (if your braids are long enough). Then cover them with a silk or satin scarf or hair bonnet. You can cover shorter braid styles with a bonnet, but longer braids need to be covered with a scarf.
Sleep on a silk or satin pillowcase if you don't want to sleep in a hair cover. The silk or satin prevents braids from rubbing against rough cotton pillowcases and frizzing up.
Shampoo braids gently. It's best to do this in the shower. When you cleanse your braids, apply a small amount of shampoo to your hands and create a lather. Then apply the shampoo to your scalp. Rub your scalp with your fingertips. You can easily fit your fingers in the braid partings.
Rub your scalp clean and let the water work the lather down into the braids. Squeeze the lather in gently, but don't rub it in.
Rinse thoroughly, paying special attention to get all the shampoo out of your braids, especially if you have extensions. Let the water flow in a downward motion and work it through your hair with your fingers.
Apply natural hair oils to your scalp, if desired. Massage the oils in and then rub your hands down the length of your braids to distribute the oils to the rest of your hair.
Natural oils like jojoba or coconut oil keep the scalp moisturized when wearing braids.