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How to Stop Breakage on 4C Natural Hair

Girrrl... maintaining great length-retention on 4C natural hair seems impossible, right?

Good news: You can 100% do it and you're about learn EXACTLY how.

When worrying about how to stop breakage on 4C natural hair you need to focus on your ends right NOW.

Treat them like QUEENS:

Bless em' with The HOT O.G. Hair Growth Rinse as well as...

...or any of our other DIY treatments you'll find while bumping around NHP!

How to Stop Breakage on 4C natural hair

You see...

The ends of your hair have been through the most drama right along with you, they deserve your full respect, and that's real...

Think about it...

Without your ends staying around for a decent amount of time you would be bald as an eagle, and when you get your ends to stay a whole lot longer that is when you flaunt even more long, luscious natural hair.

So let's GET IT!

First of All: 4C Hair Grows Like Everybody Elses

how to stop breakage on 4C natural hair products

So many type 4 naturals are convinced that their hair doesn't grow like everyone elses or that it grows more slowly, but almost 100% of the time that idea is incorrect.

Simply because:

If you are in good health and taking the proper hair growth herbs & nutrients, trust me, your hair is growing very fast.

Problem is: They just don't know how to stop breakage on 4C natural hair. See...

According to the book titled: "The Science of Black Hair", on average, your type 4 hair grows about  4 to 7 inches every year. 

Like everybody else. And listen...

In just two years that comes to 8-to-12 inches of hair growth.

Imagine keeping most of that length over the next year because of knowing how to stop breakage on 4C natural hair.

That's a lot of growth sis!

Yet and still...

If you don't take the extra necessary steps to care for your ends, it can feel like your hair is not growing as it should, in reality, your ends are just breaking faster than your new growth is coming in.

If you're anything like me, hair growth is important to you that's why I give you so many articles about how to grow your hair and keep it.

If you're anything like me, hair growth is important to you that's why we give you so many articles about how to grow your hair and keep it.

I like to give you answers because, of course...

...there are tons of silly, gimmicky hair growth products at Amazon as well as some decent temporary fixes to help your follicles push out thicker and longer strands and boost growth.

But the Holy Grail to retaining length has much more to do with how you care for your ends.

How To Stop Breakage On 4C Natural Hair:
Make A Seperate Regimen For Your Ends


The youngest, strongest hairs on your head are your roots or "new growth".

On the other hand, your ends are the oldest and physically weakest hairs on your head, think of your ends as the "senior citizens" on your head. 

How do you treat senior citizens?

With respect and great care of course (or at least you should).

Your poor ends have been through so many mistakes, setbacks, tangles, knots, unneeded hair manipulation, and possibly, excessive heat without a good anti-breakage heat protectant

The ends of your hair have earned their respect, they went through the war and they need to be handled with the most care. 

Because of these stark differences between the roots of your hair and the ends of your hair, you should have a separate regimen for your roots and for your ends. Do this, and you will truly know how to stop breakage on 4C natural hair.

[SEE RELATED ARTICLE: Is TGIN Good for 4C Hair?]  

Every time you handle your hair you should automatically treat and handle these two sections differently. The same way you would treat children and elderly people with different levels of respect and deference.

So what does this mean?

It depends on what you're doing at the time.

It could mean that while your manipulating and putting tension on your roots, you avoid putting any tension on your ends.

It could mean...

Twisting your roots but only finger coiling your ends.

The difference between how you handle your roots and ends should be based on whatever your natural hair journey goal is and what you're doing at the time.

So for this article, I'm going to show you 4 things you need to pay attention to in order to keep your ends as full and healthy as possible and retain as much length as you can. And later on, you should check out my article about how to soften coarse 4C hair.

how to stop breakage on 4C natural hair tipsHow to stop breakage on 4C natural hair tips...

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THE BIG 4 Principles for Your 4C Hair Length Regimen

Now look:

These hair length regimen rules are not set in stone, they do leave wiggle room for you to make your own decisions as you get to learn your hair more and more.

Still though:

If you strictly follow these rules sis, you are faaaaaar more likely to retain length and grow your hair longer without the normal struggles.

How To Stop Breakage/Length Retention Rule #1
- Stretching Type Hair

One of the main culprits of hair breakage for 4C natural hair is wearing your hair in it's shrunken state for too long. Don't do it, because...


Girrrrl, when you do this it is very likely that you'll get tons of breakage and get a whole bunch of single strand knots all over your head, and mainly on your ends.

We even wrote an article about the best styles to stretch natural hair.

And without a doubt:

Getting a bunch of dang single strand knots will set your natural hair journey back like crazy.

I want you to succeed in this journey and understand how to stop breakage on 4C natural hair, that's why I'm going to show you exactly what's going on.

So listen, and listen good gorgeous...

Allowing long-term shrinkage breaks your hair. PERIODT!!!


When your hair is wet, the water weighs it down and stops shrinkage in the moment. 

On a microscopic level that reduces the friction between each hair strand almost like a protective coat.

Problem is:

Even with the best natural hair products on your hair, the moisture/water will eventually evaporate and as your hair dries.

To your naked eye, it may look like all of your hair strands are shrinking at the same rate.

But on a microscopic level, each hair strand is shrinking at a different rate of speed, and in different directions.

This is what happens though:

These hair strands pull against each other and fight for position constantly.

Each bend and twist in your shrinkage acts like a pulley going in different directions, and as the hair strand shrink they tend to wrap around each other, create friction and knot up like all-get-out.

This creates tangles that make your strands snap and your hair life miserable.

And this is why as a 4C hair chick, you'll find that retaining length is much easier when you keep your hair stretched. This is one major way how to stop breakage on 4C natural hair.

How To Stop Breakage/Length Retention Rule #2: Jumping Dryness

I know y'all low porosity chicks are loving life in many ways, but listen...

It really doesn't matter if your hair is low porosity or not, your ends are always going to be on the higher side of the porosity scale.

And this is the reason why your ends have a harder time holding onto moisture, they dry out faster and when they are dry, they chip and break off little by little.

Often, by the time you notice it, your hair has broken like crazy and it was completely avoidable. But when it's too late, it's too late. That's whay you should focus on...

Preventative Moisturizing To Stop Breakage on 4C Hair

how to stop breakage on 4C natural hair the tree basic candle breakageHow to Stop Breakage on 4C natural hair

Keeping your ends lubricated and moisturized is of the utmost importance if you want to retain length in 4C hair and let your hair show that you know how to stop breakage on 4C natural hair.

Your goal must be to stay ahead of dryness.

I need you to feel me on this...

Don't you EVER wait for your ends to dry out before moisturizing them.

If you do that you're asking for problems, and you're literally asking for breakage.

You need to moisturize your ends before they get the chance to dry out. That's why I give you DIY curl cream butter recipes that you can make at home.

SO HERE'S WHAT TO DO: Make it a habit to check your ends every couple of days or so to make sure that they are not dry.

If hair length retention is important to you, you MUST do this. 

Because this is how to stop breakage on 4C natural hair.

Length Retention/How to Stop Breakage Rule #3:
Trim Weathered Ends

At the end of the day your ends will naturally weather and thin out, the best you can do is to slow down the breakage and the rate of damage so that you can keep as much of your length as possible.

Still though:

When all is said and done, trimming your hair to retain length is a personal decision.

I 100% suggest that you do not hold on to damaged and old ends that are dramatically weathered. 

You shouldn't ignore it and go running for products instead of trimming, that's just covering up the problem, literally.

It doesn't matter if you have the best natural hair curl activators and moisturizers in the world. Leaving those dead end will cause you more harm than good.


It's your life and your head though. And just keepin'it real...

Many ladies want to know how to stop breakage on 4C natural hair and still keep every 1/4 of an inch of hair that they have on their head, that's a tuffy...

Thing is:

They're not realizing that damaged ends can start to dig into newer hair strands and cause damage, even in areas where it should not naturally be.

One option that works very well is to trim off about 1/4 of an inch from your ends 3 times a year and also dust any ends that look really bad.


It is perfectly okay to just dust your ends, you don't have to get full-blown trims if it freaks you out.

PRO TIP: The less you manipulate your hair the less you will need to trim.

Length Retention/How to Stop Breakage Rule #4: Handle With Care

 I can't over-emphasize this point to you enough...

It is so very important to be gentle with your hair.

If you want your natural hair to grow long, retain length, and stay extremely healthy, you need to practice "less is more" principles..

When you truly learn your natural hair, which is what our blog website is all about, it will make a huge difference in your natural hair journey.

When it comes to your ends, they are ALWAYS going to be more fragile than the rest of your hair, especially new growth, and that will be the case no matter what you do.


That doesn't mean your 4c hair has to break at a faster rate than anyone else's. 

And you can BE SURE that it doesn't break at a fast rate if you show your kinks and curls the tender loving care that they need.

If you are heavy-handed though...

...or manipulate the ends of your natural hair too much, you will pay the price with tons of breakage. Bet on it.

How To Stop Breakage On 4C Natural Hair
- My Solution [VIDEO]

Treat Your Ends As a Separate Section
- [How to Stop Breakage on 4C Hair]

Here's a MAJOR Pro Tip:

It's best if you think of your ends as a separate section from the rest of your hair.

Every time you handle your hair you should automatically think of your ends as a separate, fragile object. 

You remember the analogy about the senior citizens from earlier in this article, right?

Because of that, you should skip your ends when manipulating your hair or at the very least deliberately handle them with much more care.

So if length retention has been giving you a problem, and your ends are breaking, it's important to pay attention to this information about how to stop breakage on 4C natural hair.

Don't trip girl:

Because you don't have to run out and get a haircut if you don't want to. 

But if you want to get your hair fully healthy, the first thing you need to do is identify and stop whatever caused your ends to get damaged in the first place, this is one of the best ways of how to stop breakage on 4C natural hair.

Causes of Your Failure at Stopping Hair Breakage/Length Retention Could Be:

Here are the common causes and reasons for a lack of length retention:

It could easily be...

  • Too much manipulation
  • Unnecessary dryness
  • Use of harsh products
  • Wearing the wrong hairstyles
  • Direct heat (i.e. flat-ironing without the best thermal protectants)
  • Rough handling
  • Excess tangles and knots
  • Etc.

When you use these tips on how to stop breakage on 4C natural hair and come up with a game plan that preserves your ends you will be WINNING and your natural hair journey will be looking like the queen that you are.

Please believe

If you stick with this length retention for 4C hair natural regimen and try other tactics like using rice water for natural hair, you'll be able to retain length and get your ends back to health at the same time.

It doesn't get any better and you'll look amazing!

I hope you enjoy this article and if you missed anything just go to the link section below and jump to the information section that will help you most. 

How To Stop Breakage On 4C Natural Hair Chapter Directory

If you have READ THIS WEALTH OF HAIR GROWTH INFORMATION, you should fully know how to stop breakage on 4C natural hair. If you have any doubts on how to stop breakage on 4C natural hair and create a great length retention regimen...

Just click the links above to jump to the section you need to learn most.

Enjoyed "How to Stop Breakage on 4C Natural Hair" Tutorial? Learn About The Author


Melissa Lee is a Contributing Editor to NHP and a former owner of the BlackhairOMG website. She formed 4C Trichology Growth Services, LLC., a US based hair care consultation service. She has also contributed as a writer and consultant for various hair and beauty websites. Melissa can be followed on Twitter here.

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