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Why Do Black Women Wear Hair Nets/Caps To Bed? Plus What To Do If Your Boo Doesn’t Care For Them

I recently read a true story on the internet where a guy complained about how his wife insisted on wearing hair nets to bed every night. Much as he hated to see her with it on, her reason for holding tight to this ritual of course, was that it helped to keep her hair style in place days after it’s made.

As with most men out there, he couldn’t understand why, as this reason seemed trivial to his male senses, but to the woman, especially to most black women, hair is prime! no woman wants to lose the straightness or curls they’ve spent a fortune in time and money to get, so it’s a lot easier to maintain with a cap or net. Also, if your hair is braided then it also protects the shape and “mats down” the split ends.

While black women may not be the only ones who wear hair nets to bed, we are most known for it, what with our weaves and braids. For the man however, all he sees is an unattractive picture!

With that said, let’s find a way to get the men to understand things better from a stylish wife’s perspective while getting the ladies to find a way of compromise, so everyone’s happy!

So guys, why do women really use nets every night to bed besides the fact that they want to preserve a hair style that could be done over again at the salon anyways? well, here’s why:

While other races seem to have hair that grows every second without as much attention given to it per time, our hair is unlike any other. It is extremely fragile and requires a little more love. It has bends and twists that make it even more vulnerable to manipulation. There are things we simply should not put our hair through!

Whether its rubbing our kinky hair on the cotton pillowcase, leaning on the cotton sofa, leaning on your shirt, drying our wet hair with a regular towel, using excessive heat, not moisturising often, etc. All these have some sort of effect on a black woman’s hair!

Black hair tends to be dry and fragile. Breakage can occur due to friction between the hair and cotton (or synthetic) pillowcase fibers. A silk scarf or bonnet protects the hair from breakage. It can also help maintain a hairstyle if the hairstyle is “set” to last for several days. So while you may not have invested in silk pillow cases, she’s preserving self. Cotton pillow cases can suck up good moisture from her hair.The way silk is (straight and sleek), it can prevent the moisture from escaping the silk cap and it reduces hair friction.

Its secondary benefit is that we, black women, love to style our hair, and in most cases it helps to preserve the style of the previous day.

A few men use it as we do, when they have texturizers in their hair, to protect their hair and to prevent moisture loss, as well as to flatten their hair. Some men with longer hair may do so for the same reasons women do.

Going to the salon however, is an all day affair, you don’t want it all messed up after one night do you? There is therefore a need to wrap your hair up every night, preferably with a good quality silk head scarf no less, since any other material zaps moisture from your hair. What’s a girl gotta do to fall asleep without tying fabric (which for some men, is a better option to the common crocheted net) around her head?

Ladies, what do you do if your man has a litany of reasons why you shouldn’t be walking around the house in that net/ cap?

Some men say the net/cap or even the better alternative, the scarf, can ruin your sexy time. Seriously, you ask, does he think you just wake up like this? Unless he’s paying for your hair to get done again and again, this scarf shouldn’t affect your ability to drop it like it’s hot in bed! right? seconded!

You could decide to style your hair to sleep – Pineapple, large twists or braids, French braids are good. Ideally if your hair is longer or prone to tangling when free, you will be doing yourself a favour by styling it before you sleep . Pineappling is creating a high bun by lifting all your hair upwards and securing it loosely with a large hair tie. It is ideal if your hair is long and is prone to simple tangles. If your hair is the complex knot forming, shrinkage loving, meshing type of hair then a better way to secure it is in 8-10 large twists or large braids or even two French braids. You can also do the pineapple, large twists or large braids or French braids on hair that is in smaller/mini single strand twists or braids.

Using a satin pillowcase or covering your pillow with the silk scarf can help retain your hair moisture and style. Silk scarves and satin bonnets are seen by many to be softer, less abrasive surfaces for hair to rest on. If you are not wearing one, then your next best option is to cover your pillow with the silk scarf or buy a silk pillowcase. This will allow your hair to rest on the silk surface and therefore gives you the benefit of the softer surface.

As said before, Covering your hair at night can contribute to moisture retention and therefore conversely, uncovering it may lead to loss of moisture. However, many people can sleep without covering their hair without any problems. If you know your hair is prone to dryness, just take extra care to increase the frequency of your moisture routine while still generally avoiding oil at night time.A good technique we have found that helped with protecting our hair are cornrows, twists, braids, buns and other protective styles.

If however, you decide after this that you are going to heed Le Beau’s requests not to cover your hair while you sleep, take care not to be heavy handed with oil on your hair especially if you have a night time moisturising routine. Many natural oils can be comedogenic meaning they can cause acne. Covering your hair allows some of this oil to be absorbed by the scarf or bonnet and therefore without this absorption, you should be aware that even more oil will be transferred to your pillow and therefore to your face.  Can’t be missed and did I hear you say you can’t win em all? Yes, dear, you are so right! won’t be so bad if you got him to pay for your next trip to the salon, would it?

One final note ladies, a sleeping cap is actually meant for sleeping. What that means is that you put it on your head when you are about to sleep, and then, when you wake up, you take it off. You may wear it around the house (not advisable) or leave it on your head when you walk outside to throw the trash in the dumpster, but please, let it not go beyond the dumpster. Wearing it to the store, market, airport or anywhere else for that matter should not be mentioned at all!… no matter how colorful it is. In this case, if they do complain, the guys have all the right in the world to do so!

Ladies,  what do you think about the infamous hair net/cap? is it a  necessary ‘evil’ your man should learn to cope with? Why don’t you send us a mail or comment below?

Photos/Source: quora.com, cosmopolitan,com, verastic.com, blackgirllonghair.com, naturallycurly.com, blackgirlhealth.com