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African-American woman with braids scratching the back of her itchy scalp.

Nothing is worse than ruining a cute hairstyle because of an itchy scalp – and not just a little bit itchy. If you’ve ever worn a protective style, you know that the feeling of product build up and dryness is next level. Nothing is more maddening than knowing you know you could still get two to three more weeks out of your style, but your itchy scalp has you saying “forget it!” Check out these itchy scalp remedies to get the most of your protective styles.

1. Use a Hair Mask or Treatment

Before getting a protective style, many salons will ask you to come with freshly washed hair that has no product in it. While this product-free, freshly washed hair makes it easy for your stylist, it can be hard on your strands, leaving them in a dry, vulnerable state. While yes, it’s possible to hydrate your natural hair once it’s styled, it’s best to enter the salon properly moisturized hair. To do that, on your final wash before heading to the salon, use a deep conditioning treatment or moisturizing hair mask to give it that added moisture.

2. Still Wash Your Hair

We’ve heard that people think it’s impossible to wash your hair while in a protective style, but the truth is, you still need to cleanse your hair and refresh your scalp to keep your hair looking great and your scalp comfortable. It might not be as easy as when your hair is in its natural state, but it’s still possible! Use products with a special nozzle to help easily target product build-up or dandruff on your scalp, and use a microfiber towel to reduce frizz. Be gentle – the goal is to protect your strands, after all.

3. Pick the Right Products

Products with nozzles that help target your scalp and don’t disrupt the style are key. You also want to make sure those products provide scalp cooling and relief, because as good as protective styles are for your hair, they can be tough on your scalp. Something like the Royal Oils Refreshing Root Rinse or Instant Soothe Scalp Elixir are the perfect products to add to your routine to get relief fast and feel refreshed.

4. Bonnets are a Non-Negotiable

You stand to lose the most moisture from your hair and scalp while you sleep. Bonnets or silk scarves prevent cotton pillowcases from absorbing the moisture and product from your hair. They also keep your style free of frizz so you can maintain it for longer and keep it looking its best.

5. Get Friendly with Silks and Satins

Like we mentioned, silk scarves can be a nighttime staple. Silk and satin are popular for naturals because they aren’t as porous as cotton, and their smooth texture doesn’t snag hair. Satin-lined hats, pillowcases, bonnets, scarves, and more have been created just for natural hair, to keep your style in place and moisture in your strands.

Want to learn more ways to give your crown the royal treatment? Learn more here.

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