How to Take Care of Senegalese Twists

Hey all,
So during my daily natural hair web surfing, I seem to come across dozens of questions on how to maintain Senegalese Twists and Kinky Twists. There isn’t much information on caring for these guys  so I decided that this should be my first official post!
I got my MBL/ waist length Senegalese twists on 9/9/12…about 10 days ago. They took about 4 hours since I had two people braiding my hair, which was awesome since I had to work later.

Preparation: A week before on wash day

(I also did it again the day before)

  1. Prepoo’d with oils mixed with a cheapie conditioner
  2. Shampoo with Shea Moisture Retention Shampoo
  3. Protein treatment with Millcreek Keratin Conditioner
  4. Deep conditioned with Shea Moisture Shea Butter Masque
  5. Applied my leave in of Aloe Vera Juice/ Taliah Waajid protective mist bodifier/ and some Shea Moisture
  6. Sealed with an oil
  7. Banded my hair so it would be stretched for the braiders.** (this is where I messed up because when I got to the braiding place they still blow dried my hair, and I may have lost a lot of hair, so I recommend blow drying it yourself or doing some other form of stretching.)

Maintenance:

I was pretty nervous that my natural hair would puff out of the twists but it’s doing pretty good for right now, it’s starting to show but I don’t notice unless I’m looking for it. ACV (apple cider vinegar) diluted with water helps to keep the frizz down though.

Cleansing/ Moisturizing: UPDATED

Before I was all I don’t want to wash my hair with these twists in but now I do so I figured I would update this!

IF YOU DO WANT TO WASH:

  1. Dilute shampoo with water, more water than shampoo, in an applicator bottle and squirt onto your scalp and throughout your twists
  2. Rinse thoroughly
  3. Apply diluted conditioner onto your twists
  4. Baggy hair with a plastic bag for about an hour (optional but the conditioner is not!)
  5. Rinse and spray some diluted ACV to keep the frizz down (just a splash in 16 oz of water, less is more)
  6. Apply leave ins
  7. Put a bit of serum/oil on to smooth an extra frizzies

IF YOU DON’T WANT TO WASH:

  1. Use witch hazel diluted with water (cleans/tones scalp and has antibacterial qualities, make sure it’s alcohol-free) in an applicator bottle on my scalp and then I apply my oil mix
  2. On hair/twists use Apple cider vinegar (just a splash in 16 oz of water, less is more) in a spray bottle to remove buildup and frizzies (the smell disappears after it dries)
  3. Apply  moisture mist (make sure whatever you use is very light so that you don’t get any buildup!)
  4. Baggy hair with a plastic bag for like an hour
  5. Put a bit of serum/oil on to smooth an extra frizzies

That’s it! My hair always feels soft and my scalp feels very cool and refreshed

Daily: 

I apply my oil mix  in the mornings, mostly focusing on my edges and nape. If my hair is feeling dry, I spray on my moisture mist. At night, I just pop my bonnet on after putting my hair in a low bun.

Every few weeks you may need to redo your edges to keep the style looking fresh, hope this helps!

*This is just what I do, please listen to your hair to find what works for you*

How do you take care of your protective style?

Talk to me on Twitter @heyamonaie !

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26 Comments

  1. This is very helpful, as I am thinking about doing Senegalese twists for summer, and I've never worn a weave before. BTW, this was posted on my birthday HAHA

  2. My hair uis short and quite a few have fallen out but part of its my hair because I bother the loose ones.. bad habit

  3. If the twists are sliding then they are too loose or if you have short hair then they are just slipping out in which case you may want to take them out before they fall out on there own.

    Also is the problem just how they look or your scalp or both?

    if its both your best bet is probably to just take them out but i am not sure

  4. Well this is my first time having these twists and they're very long. But something I noticed is that I can see my real hair like twisted and the twist are kind of idk like slid its hard to explain

  5. I have heard that some people are allergic to the alkaline base that some companies but on synthetic hair, this includes braiding hair.

    Have you had braids before, could this be the issue? Also are your braids very tight, this could also irritate your nape?

    Or have you used any new products/techniques on your scalp lately?

  6. Hi Jelecia! I don't think it will effect your twists that much, it may get frizzy faster but I'm not sure. I haven't tried that.

    It seems like if you put your hair in a low ponytail (not a high one because I think it'll be pulling and swinging too much) or if you put your twists in to 2 old school cornrows/french braids while you work out then it should be fine! Maybe a sweatband would help as well. 🙂

    Good luck and you should let us know what you ends up working for you, so you can help someone else with this question 🙂

  7. Hi Angie! You need to wash your hair! You can use shampoo diluted in a applicator bottle (like they use for dying hair) or you can do an ACV rinse (cap full of apple cider vinegar in a water bottle, put it in a spray bottle, applicator bottle, or just use it like you're rinsing your hair with water). Either way you will have to scrub your scalp (with your fingers, rub not scratch) to help the build up wash away. The grease is too heavy for your scalp, try moisturizing with a light oil like coconut or jojoba instead 🙂 I hope this helps!

  8. Got Senegalese twist 3 weeks ago. Love my twist but I'm having problems with build up in my twist. I have dandruff so I've been using hair grease to moisture my scalp. What can I use to remove the build up? Too soon to take them out. But I hate seeing the build up. Don't want people to think my hair is nasty. Please help

  9. Hey love,I think you could re-twist the ends and burn them if you want or you can re-dip in boiling water and while you are drying use the towel to smooth the hair straight so it'll look neat.

    Orrr set the ends on rollers right, then dip them in boiling water and then the ends will be curly and it may look better, kind of like kinky twists? I think you should do the last one, it seems like it would be pretty.

    PS. did you use kanekalon hair or marley hair? If you used marley hair then it may look dread like. Usually people use the braiding hair for Senegalese twists.

    I hope this helps!

  10. i did the twist in my hair this past weekend, but the end keep undoing them selfeve even after i dipped them in hot water. and some stayed and they look dready.. is there a way i can re cut and twist or burn the ends or should i re dip them and dont crunch the bottom this time..?

  11. use ORS edge control as needed to keep edges slick. I would recommend always getting the parts around your edge line to be at least 1/2 -3/4 of an inch large so they aren't being pulled and stressed. I also redo my own edges every 2 weeks to prevent damage and build up. My hair is 100% natural for over 2 years and i have worn senegalese twists back to back for the past 7 months with NO damage using these few tips.

  12. I use ORS Herbal Cleanse dry shampoo every 2 weeks. For daily maintenance I use the African Royal braid spray and olive oil as needed and sleep with a satin bonnet on my head.

  13. Hi! it's Apple cider vinegar! You can find it at any store. When I was in the US, I would by it at Price Rite for like a dollar and it was a super big jug of it. Use 1 part acv to like 3 parts water. The water should outweigh the vinegar. It will smell like vinegar but when it dries it will go away. I think this works because the acv is acidic so it will close the cuticle thus reducing frizz and making the hair appear shiny. You also may want to slick some pomade or something on your twists for extra smoothness

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