HAIR CARE WHILST WEARING EXTENSIONS (Part 3)- removal of extensions and washing in braids guide

hair in braidsMy hair put into single braids before being washed  

Hello ladies, I am such a naughty blogger.

I’ve been meaning to update the blog but I’ve been so busy that my head is spinning half the time.  My own hair has been under one of my Hair by Type 4 wigs because I knew I would be really busy and not have as much time to take care of it. I am also a little under the weather and now that I am forced to sit and actually rest, I finally have time to publish Part 3 of the hair care in weaves and braids series.

In this post, I will discuss how hair should be removed from extensions and how to cleanse your hair after extensions have been removed.  I hope the following tips will help you avoid unnecessary hair loss.
Please ensure you have read part 1 and 2 of the series.



1) Detangle as you unravel.  When undoing the cornrows underneath the weave or the plaits of your braids, detangle as you go along.
If you wait till you finish undoing the weave tracks or braids before you detangle, it is likely that you will become overwhelmed and not detangle properly and you may also fail to remove the shed hairs.

2) Do not use combs to rip out knots.  Use your fingers to loosen and separate any knots or matted hair you come across.   You can then follow gently with the use of a wide tooth comb.

3) A little olive oil can be applied to the knots or matted hair to assist with detangling.  Olive oil is known for helping to remove shed hairs.  Alternatively if you own a detangling spray, a little can be sprayed on the knots and matted hair.

4) Wash and deep condition (in single plaits)
We are often advised to wash and deep condition our hair after extensions have been taken out to remove dirt, build-up and to restore moisture and strength to our hair fibres.  However this can result in matted hair.  This is because when water is poured on hair that has just been removed from extensions, the shed hairs slip and often tangles with other hair strands.

However washing your hair in single braids (calabar) restricts the movement of the shed hairs  and prevents it  from tangling or forming locs.

The process is simple

  • Unravel and detangle each braid or weave track.
  • After the whole head has been detangled, plait your hair in 6 or more single plaits (see the picture above of my hair in braids)
  • Wash and deep condition your hair with the single braids in.
  • Rinse thoroughly
  • Undo each braid, apply your leave in products and detangle.
  • Air dry or blow dry on a cool setting and then moisturise and seal.

This may seem long winded but it works very well in preventing matting.

I hope you find this post useful.  Now I am going to do two things, take my next dose of pain killers and call up a few friends before they think I am missing.

I have a HUGE announcement coming really soon……I’ve been up to something….its hair related and is one of the main reasons why I’ve been so busy (and tired) lately.
I really can’t wait to share it all with you.



Learn | Change | Grow



  1. amaka
    October 2, 2013 / 10:11 pm

    I have been washing in plaits but I find that when I want to style my hair,I stil lose quite a bit of it especially after taking down braids

  2. omolade
    October 3, 2013 / 11:38 pm

    Hello Amaka

    If you have a good regimen and are your hair is still breaking a lot you probably need to review your techniques, ie, consider how you handle your hair, are you being gentle enough? should you be using a wider comb? are you styling your hair too often?
    You may also want to review your hair products, is your moisture and protein balance correct for your hair type.

    When you have your hair in braids do you try to keep your hair hydrated? if your hair has been allowed to become excessively dry when wearing braids, it will be more prone to breakage when undoing the braids.
    Also, there is a chance that some of the hair you lose when you undo your braids are shed hairs not broken hairs.

    I hope the above will help you review your regimen, techniques and products. I hope you will be able to pinpoint what the problem is.


  3. Aladaise
    October 15, 2013 / 6:00 pm

    What type of comb should I be using? I don’t think mine is wide enough!

    • omolade
      November 2, 2013 / 4:04 pm

      There are so may types of combs out there. personally I use the afro pick combs, the ones with the fist.

      I think it depends on how dense or full your hair is. just make sure its not one of those rat tail or really fine combs

  4. Koren
    October 28, 2013 / 10:07 am

    I had a weave put in this July and was really mindful about spraying on a leave-in conditioner a few times per week. When I took it down I was pleased because I didn’t seem to have too much shedding. I did a moisturizing conditioner overnight. I was so shocked when I was showering that a lot of hair started coming out. I think that putting my hair in plaits as you’ve suggested will really help. I didn’t think that my hair was tangled only krinkly because of the plaits so it became tangled in the shower and I had to come it out. Question, can the leave-in over moisturize? Was it wrong to sleep in a deep conditioner overnight (maybe I should have used a protein deep conditioner)? I am trying to retain length so having all of this hair come out in the shower was kind of devastating. Trying to prevent a repeat.

    BTW – I love your page. It is informative and your before pictures show that you HAVE truly transformed your hair. I would also like to follow your wig regimen.


  5. omolade
    November 2, 2013 / 4:13 pm

    Hello Koren

    Thank you!!!!! I am glad you find Hairducation informative.

    its possible that the hair that came out in the shower is shed hair. sometimes when we remove extensions we don’t remove all the shed hairs and the pressure from the shower heads and the weight of the water makes the shed hairs fall out.

    and yes I always encourage putting hair in box braids before washing it especially if they have just removed extensions. Its a great way to minimise the risk of tangling and matting when washing. I so sorry that you hair got tangled this time but next time you know what to do.

    Also after removing extensions protein is necessary to strengthen your hair fibres. what I would suggest for next time is that you mix some of your protein and moisture conditioner together that way your hair is moisture and protein balanced.

    Hope that helps, happy hair journey.


  6. shy
    October 28, 2014 / 8:25 pm

    Hi, i know this post is old but i wanted know if u experience leftover shampoo or condtioner residue inside your braids after taking them down… i want to try washing my hair in braids but im unsure if i can rinse all the product completely out

  7. Teresa
    November 21, 2014 / 8:52 pm

    Hi Lade, I’ve been reading ur blog for a while now and I think it’s amazing, thank you for the wonderful posts. I ‘ve struggled with my hair length for a while and it’s currently in box braids. My question is:
    Would it be possible to wash and deep condition on the same day you take out ur braids?
    Regards,Teresa x

  8. August 12, 2015 / 3:35 pm

    awesome method thanks for sharing i do my own hair with this information.

  9. August 12, 2015 / 3:49 pm

    I agree with you lade, it’s important also using the right products and keeping the hair hydrated my hair gets dry in a heartbeat if I miss a day I can see the difference except on wash days. I can go maybe two days top without recoiling or moisturizing you are also right when you say it’s important to keep hair regiment up I learned that the hard way that everything comes together everything you talk about and suggest makes towards success in having good healthy long hair. Question: do have any u tube videos? I I got my start in learning about my hair and making it grow on u tube.

  10. ema
    September 28, 2015 / 9:49 pm

    Hello lade, your blog has really inspired me, i wanted to ask what can be the cause of hair shedding, my hair pulls from the root (i see the whitish root end on the shed hair) each time i comb or just put my fingers through.

    • Lade
      January 28, 2016 / 12:00 am

      Hello Ema

      Shedding is a normal part of our hairs growth cycle. I wrote a blog post about shedding a while ago which you may find helpful. You can use the search button at the top left section of this page.



  11. Sade Mc Queen
    December 22, 2015 / 6:49 pm

    Hi Lade,
    My hair is relaxed initially I use to relax every month and of course it broke off. I cut it low and grew it all over again. The thing is though, immediately after a year my hair bounces off relaxers. Which leaves me to keep switching products and brand. I am from Trinidad in the caribbean and here it’s very temperate. i feel as though my hair is generally very weak as I often have to be very careful as it breaks very easily. Please Help!

    • Lade
      January 28, 2016 / 12:12 am

      Hello Sade, thanks for your comment

      I recommend you wash your hair with a clarifying shampoo a week before your relaxer day. If your hair has a lot of product build up before your relax it may block the relaxer from working well.
      I hope that helps

  12. Ijeoma
    January 3, 2016 / 6:34 pm

    Hi. Lovely the way you put the information here. I’m on a hair journey but committed to be “more serious” now. I’m currently taking braid twists out and I can see my hair coming off. One thing i’d like to know. What kind of water do you recommend warm or cold? I noticed you said warm for cleaning hair in braids/ weave but is this same when washing and conditioning?

    • Lade
      January 28, 2016 / 12:06 am

      Hello Ijeoma

      In the blog post above I meant when washing your own hair alone (no extensions) in braids….Warm for washing, cool ( not cold) for rinsing applies when washing and conditioning hair regardless of if it is in braids or not.

      hope that helps

  13. Priscilla Esi Nkum
    February 17, 2016 / 10:22 am

    always an inspiration. i will definitely try these steps. thank you

  14. Rolyn
    June 22, 2016 / 12:41 pm

    Hi Lade i am also concerned that if you wash your hair in braids not all the shampoo will be rinsed. how do you avoid that?

  15. Wakglene
    July 19, 2016 / 11:18 pm

    Can i take out my plaits from my hair 2-3 days before relaxer day or do have to remove the plaits a week before relaxer day? Also can i wash my hair right after i take out the weave or do i have to wait until i get my relaxer?

  16. Toluwanise
    January 3, 2017 / 3:21 am

    Hi Lade,
    I’m very new to all of this and I was just wondering wether I would still be able to do a hot oil treatment with my hair in single braids or do I have to do it beforehand?

    BTW, your blog is amazing and I’ve been looking for somewhere that provides all the information I need to achieve healthy hair and yours was the one. My desire for wanting healthy hair was simply so I could do really cool buns and plaits with my natural hair and just generally make hair care easier and less painful. Your blog has filled me with such ideas and I can’t wait to try them.

    P.S. Your hair is so beautiful

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