Can You Suffer Traction Alopecia From Weaves?

People love tight hairstyles like weaves. Tight braids or tight ponytails are more famous among American-African adults and women. But there is a serious concern that has been looming amongst its lovers is a thing called traction alopecia. 

Traction alopecia is a problem that does not have an outright solution. The ones available are time-consuming and require a lot of effort. Focus on keeping your hair healthy before and during the process of installing the weaves. 

What is Traction Alopecia?

Can You Suffer Traction Alopecia From Weaves?

Traction Alopecia is the most extreme scalp disease as a result of consistent hair loss. Damage to the natural hair follicles or hair shaft caters to this. Hair loss at higher rates and lack of actions to prevent that leads to traction alopecia. 

Can hair weaves cause traction alopecia?

Yes, weaves can cause traction alopecia. Since you have your hair pulled almost all the time, the hair roots become weak, becoming more vulnerable to breakage. This hair loss along adds up to huge numbers creating the situation. 

The addition of braids, dreadlocks, and cornrows in the weave hairstyle increases the pressure on your scalp. Even if you use artificial weave extensions instead of your natural hair, it still adds force to the strands. 

Given that you are doing weaves on very long hair, you are more on the path to traction alopecia. 

Traction Alopecia: Is your weave worth it?

 Hair loss from traction alopecia

Weaves are one of the best hairstyles donned by many women and men. There are popular articles available in abundance showing how boldly these styles are flaunted by everyone. You can do it too, but you need to take a few considerations into account.

Quite a few risks are involved regarding weaves. Constant pulling on the hair from weave styles can hinder the health conditions of your skin around the hairline and scalp as a whole. 

Small hairs around the hairline will fall off and slowly create bald patches. New hair growth in such regions does not take place for long periods of time. 

Considering you reach a stage of central centrifugal cicatricial alopecia, that bald region will undergo permanent hair loss. No treatment can cure that. 

No such scenario will arrive if you properly maintain and prepare your hair for the weave styles. It’s worth it if you are ready for it, it’s not given that your hair is not fit enough. 

What causes hair loss or traction alopecia? 

Certain hairstyles like tight buns or tight hairstyles like weaved braids/cornrows tend to set you up for hair loss. Note that these styles are responsible for it, but average hair health combined with them together leads to hair loss. 

The hair follicle is the most important part of your hair. Hair loss caused by the damage of hair follicles is more concerning as it leads to traction alopecia. It is one of the most serious disorders and needs to be addressed if caught early. 

Considering you wear synthetic extensions of different weave styles, you still have the chance to face traction alopecia. Taped or sew in wigs put immense pressure on your scalp. The glue can strip the skin and prevent hair growth in that region. 

What does Traction Alopecia feel like?

What does Traction Alopecia feel like?

Wellness professionals in many medical journals and peer-reviewed studies have suggested that when you feel pain on your scalp in a certain region, it means the strands there, are being stretched beyond their limit.

It will be impossible to prevent traction alopecia if you allow that stretch to persist. Since it happens mostly around the region of your forehead, it is difficult to get caught early. You will feel that nothing is wrong. But slowly, you will observe your hairline is going backward.

The bottom line is that if you are starting to have neck pains or headaches, then you must manage settings of your weaves or wigs, using hair relaxers. Relaxed hair is necessary throughout the journey of weaving hairstyles or braids. 

How can traction alopecia be identified (under hair extensions as well)?

It is one of those hair disorders that does not act like one. It feels like there is no problem and suddenly you realize it’s too late. Many women appoint a stylist to overlook their styling methods. 

The solution may sound generic, but it is still the answer. Regularly monitor your hair, either by yourself or your stylist. Doing so will prevent the situation from getting worse at later stages of your styling.

What are the first signs of traction alopecia?

  • The first signs of traction alopecia are typically small, round patches of hair loss. These patches may be accompanied by hair thinning, and the hair that remains may be brittle and easily broken.
  • Traction alopecia typically affects the hairline and temples first, but can eventually spread to other areas of the scalp.

How long does the hair follicles damage take to reverse?

Damage to the hair follicle is something that takes quite some time to recover. Now, do not fall for a treatment that promises specific results. There is no invaluable service to reverse alopecia. Preventing fraud is necessary because too many experiments on your hair will increase hair loss. 

Hair loss caused by weaving on natural hair will take longer to be revived. It will take about six to eight months for that. Hair loss caused by over-usage of wigs may take lesser time than mentioned. 

How to stop it before it’s too late?

Studies have shown that Sikh male patients and women are the largest visitors to dermatologists for alopecia. The former category is there because they tend to grow and style their locs. 

  1. Uninstall Cornrows or Wigs: To prevent the situation from worsening, uninstall the cornrows if you can. If you are wearing wigs, then uninstall them for some time. Securely process them with apple cider vinegar mixed with water. 
  2. Avoid wearing wigs for extended periods: Wearing the wig for a long time without processing them can increase the pressure on your locs. 
  3. Avoid Chemical Treatments and Use Natural Creams/Oils: And finally, avoid chemical treatments at all costs. Wear natural creams or oils on your scalp, and try to retain the nutrients of your hair. Put some argan oil on your scalp, wear a shower cap, and keep it for thirty minutes before rinsing thoroughly with a mild shampoo with less sulfate content. 
  4. Wash Hair with Herbal Shampoo at Regular Intervals: Go for herbal shampoo, and wash your hair with that at regular intervals. 



Weaves can be safe for your hair if they are installed correctly and not too tight. Weaves help protect your hair from damage and breakage, can add volume and body to your hair, and can be styled in many different ways.


Wearing sew ins can lead to the disease if not done properly. Your hair should be strong, the sew ins should be processed properly.


Yes, especially the taped ones. Once the tape expires, it can ruin the scalp on its region, and cause hair loss. But regular replacement will prevent this problem to arise. 


It takes about a year of continuous ignorance of hair care for this disease to take place on your head. It can be prevented if you take the right steps in time. You can style your hair again, but the damage will not wait. 


Women love to weave their locs, and rightly so. The fear of this disease should not refrain women from embracing this style. Get in touch with professionals so that you do not have to undergo all these troubles. 

Taking proper care of your locs will definitely help you make your hair stronger and more beautiful. Most people make the mistake of taking up the style without knowing if it is right for them or not. Avoid that and prepare well for the styling journey.

By Cindy Mahlangu

Hey there! I'm Cindy Mahlangu, a pro hairstylist with a serious passion for natural hair care. My mission? To inspire and educate others on the beauty and benefits of protective hairstyles. Through my creative writing, aim to empower individuals to embrace their unique hair texture and confidently care for their locks. So, whether you're rocking locs, braids, or twists, join me on this hair journey and let's achieve healthy, fabulous tresses together!

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