Of course not, I just couldn't stay away from the bundles!! I began researching hundreds of YT videos over proper care for sew ins. After a few weeks of research, I stole different tidbits from a few Youtubers, and I felt I was ready to try again. Below is a list of the most helpful techniques to maintaining a sew in, that I believe led me to such a peaceful experience. :)
1. Moisturized Hair Prior Install- Before getting my hair braided I deep conditioned using a deep moisturizing product. I also thoroughly moisturized & sealed my hair in the days leading up to the install.
2. Washing Frequently- Using diluted shampoo in a spray bottle, and spraying directing on scalp. Use finger tips to massage scalp. I believe this helped tremendously, because I was able to keep my scalp and hair clean. In previous installs I didn't focus so much on keeping my braids clean, the way I did this last time. *I also used essential oils like tea tree & lavendar while washing
3. Nylon Thread- My stylist used nylon thread, instead of the cotton thread which causes a lot less tension and drying on my relaxed hair.
4. Sleep Wear- This step is more crucial to the actual bundles than my relaxed hair, but in previous installs my hair would matt at the nape of neck over time. During this past stretch, I would either wrap my hair if it was straight, or braid it every night before putting on my bonnet. I had a lot less tangles, and used less heat on my actual extensions.
5. Deep Conditioning/ Steaming- In the same way that I diluted my shampoo, I also diluted my conditioners and sat under my hooded dryer weekly. Deep conditioning made a world of difference! When I took my sew in down my hair was sooo soft, I couldn't even believe it.
I think the biggest thing I changed was my proactivity while in a sew in. I think before I thought of it as a "break" from my hair, but in no way is it a break lol. It still requires daily/weekly maintenance, however the benefit is the lack of manipulation that goes into it. I was so glad to have retained and gained hair while in a sew-in for the first time ever. I left that style in for a little over 8 weeks, and I relaxed at 16 weeks in early June. *Refer to Relaxer Updates to see progress of my hair over time... I already have my next appointment scheduled for the fall <3