Protect Your Hair While You Sleep: 3 Easy Tips That Aren’t Annoying

It’s super important to protect your hair while you sleep. Through the night, our strands are rubbing against our pillowcase for hours — if our hair is down, this can cause friction, knotting, matting and breakage. Bedhead is sexy and all, but it’s definitely not doing anything to preserve hair health.

We all have a 50 step skin care routine before bed, naturally, but we need to think about having a hair care routine before bed, too. Sorry to give you more to do, but it won’t take long, it won’t be annoying, and it will be worth it. Actually, you might even start looking forward to it.

The point of protecting our hair while we sleep is this: every little thing we can do to preserve hair health helps our hair become healthier and stronger overtime — and healthier, stronger hair means we’re supporting our natural hair and helping it look and be it’s best. Eliminating breakage and pumping up any habit that helps us go a bit easier on our hair will make a huge difference. Think gentle. Gentle is your new favorite word when it comes to your hair.

Follow these simple tips to protect your hair while you sleep and preserve your hair health so your hair can look it’s best naturally:

Brush your hair out before bed. 

If you're not washing your hair before bedbrush out your dry hair with a natural bristle brush. Brushing your hair before bed will help you stimulate your scalp and most importantly, will get the knots out from the day, so you can go to bed with knot-free strands. A good brush to use when you’re brushing out your dry hair is a natural bristle brush. You'll want to use a good quality boar bristle hair brush or vegan bristle hair brush. Our favorite brand for a natural bristle hair brush is Mason Pearson. Our favorite brand for a vegan boar bristle hair brush is Briogeo.

If you’re washing your hair before bed— when you're out of the shower with clean hair, detangle your hair with a good quality detangling brush. Detangling wet hair is super important — after shampooing, conditioning and rinsing, getting the knots out gently will help our hair dry evenly and freely and will help keep our strands strong — with knots, matting and breakage at bay. When detangling wet hair we want to be super gentle and we want to use a good detangling brush that will do the job in as little rounds as possible. We don't want to keep going over and over each section. We want knots to brush out with as little tug and repetitions as possible. Our favorite brands for detangling brushes for all hair types are Wet Brush and Tangle Teezer.

Apply a hair mask or hair oil.

Sleeping with a hair mask is one of the most convenient ways to fit your hair mask into your routine — sleep with it, rinse in the morning, check it off the list! If you’re sleeping with a hair mask, you’ll definitely want to use one that is clean and silicone-free. We don’t want harsh chemicals sitting on our hair and scalp ever, but especially while we sleep — ew. And, we want to make sure we are using a silicone-free hair mask so we are not left with coated hair that’s weighed down without any shape at all after we rinse. Our favorite silicone-free, clean hair mask is our Juice Drench Hair Treatment. It is 99% plant and water based, gentle enough to leave on while you sleep, and will nourish, soften and add shine all without the weight of silicones and other harsh chemicals. Simply apply Juice Drench to wet, damp or dry hair before bed and slip your hair into a bun or braid. Rinse, shampoo and condition with more Juice Drench in the morning — easy peasy.

Sleeping with a hair oil is another gentle, soothing, low-lift way to protect your hair while you sleep. Hair oils are amazing for preserving and promoting hair health, hair wellness, and hair growth. Again, we want to make sure that any product we are using on our hair, especially while we sleep, is clean and silicone-free. Our favorite hair oil in general and before bed is Captain Blankenship Hair and Scalp Oil. You can also use good quality castor oil (there are good ones to pick from on amazon) and mix it into your hair mask to pump up the benefits of your hair mask. We are big fans of mixing hair oils with hair masks — more is more when it comes to good quality ingredients and healing your hair. Just like Juice Drench, apply your hair oils or hair mask and hair oil concoction to wet, damp or dry hair and then slip hair back into a bun or braid. Rinse, shampoo and condition with Juice Drench in the morning.

*It is always recommended to do a patch test before using or sleeping with any product or combination of products.

Sleep with your hair up.Sleeping with our hair up is probably the easiest, fastest, cheapest way to eliminate breakage and help our hair become stronger. After we brush our hair out and apply our hair mask or hair oil — wet or dry — put your hair up. Now, our favorite way to do this is to put our hair in a braid. You can put your hair into a French braid, dutch braid, fishtail braid, or classic braid — any braid you choose will do the trick. Secure your braid with a fabric scrunchie or hair tie — no rubber bands or rubber hair ties — stick to fabric, remember to think gentle. You can also chose to sleep with your hair in a bun. Simply flip your head over, pile hair on top of your head and secure with a fabric scrunchie. The point of sleeping with our hair up is to keep our hair in one place. We don’t want our hair flying all over the place while we sleep — remember, this can cause knots, matting and breakage. Securing our hair in a braid or bun will help keep our hair in one place until the morning, when we can let is loose again.

Sleep on a silk pillowcase.Sleeping on a silk pillowcase is a tried-and-true way to ease friction between your hair and your pillowcase since silk is a slippery surface that is way gentler on hair strands. Huge bonus right here — if your hair is already good at holding shape and style, a silk pillowcase can also help preserve your blowout and curls since strands gliding on silk is way more gentle than strands rubbing on cotton.

So you see, giving your hair a wind-down routine can help prevent breakage and promote stronger, healthier strands overtime. It’s just all about paying attention to what feels gentle and giving our hair a bit more attention, just like we do our skin. Using quality, clean hair care products and introducing gentle hair habits are two huge steps towards hair wellness and loving your natural hair even more.