Let's talk about breakage and moisture.
Myth: Braids break your hair or make it fall out.
"I don't wear braids because they make your hair come out".
Fact: excessive pulling, tugging, gripping, and or tension (i.e.; hair braiding, sew-in, crochet, ponytails) may cause breakage.
Q: Why does this happen?
A: There are many factors to consider when trying to pinpoint why you may experience breakage with braids or other hairstyles. Such as hair type/texture. Hair that is fine/thin may be more susceptible to breakage because it is more fragile. Stylists braiding or pulling too tight. Let's be clear, braids can be uncomfortable but if they are too tight you may experience some breakage. And here's the main one....failure to moisturize! You are 10X more likely to experience breakage if your hair isn't properly moisturized.
Q: How do I properly moisturize my hair?
A: First things first, moisture starts from within. Water, water, water! Increasing your water intake will help eliminate dry brittle hair. Also, when you shampoo your hair you strip the hair of dirt, product build-up, and some natural oils as well. Conditioning your hair will replenish the necessary oils needed for moisture. Leave-in conditioners are also key to seal in moisture after shampooing and conditioning and before blow drying. Blow drying hair (especially at high temps) will dry the hair out and promote breakage. Using a heat protectant is important! And lastly, using a moisturizing cream, spray, grease, or something similar during styling will allow the hair to be more pliable and reduce the chances of breakage.
So the fact is; breakage can happen but it is very possible and easy to prevent!
The following pic of dry and wet spaghetti noodles are a perfect example of how hair responds to styling when it is properly moisturized or dry and brittle.