Hair and Skin Care for Children with African Ancestry

Skin is the largest organ of the human body. It is the first line of protection against outside invaders. That includes the skin of the scalp which is covered with hair. Pediatricians, social workers, teachers, family members, and even complete strangers will notice and judge how a child is being cared for based on the health of their skin and hair.

The hair and skin of children with African Ancestry can often present special challenges to their physical and emotional well being. Dealing with these challenges is no longer the sole responsibility of the mother. The fathers of children of African descent (at least some of them) have been stepping up to share the responsibility for this important area of HEALTH CARE. And as a health educator, health always comes first with me.

If you are person of either sex who is responsible for the care and well being of a child with African ancestry: Read, Watch, and then DO.


Hair and Skin Care for African American and Biracial Children. Written and Created by Nicole M. Hewitt, MSW for the Pennsylvania Child Welfare Training Program.


Skin Type

Remember that skin color is not a skin type. In order to give your children the best skin care you will need to learn what skin type they have. One of the most common problems that I see results from believing that all dark skin is oily. It results in the needs of dark skinned children with dry skin going unmet and their skin being damaged by cleaning regimens that are much to harsh.

Oily Or Dry? How To Determine Your Skin Type In Three Easy Steps – Essence

Curl Pattern

Healthy hair also requires that you recognize and work with different curl patterns (sometimes more than one on the same head).


When Alexis Ohanian tried to join closed Black Hair Groups created for women, they turned him away. They empathized with his desire to learn how to care for his daughter’s hair. They pointed out that he did not need to join a group created for women to learn. They told him to go to YouTube. This is a brief compilation from 2018.

Dad’s are helping their daughters have healthy hair and boosting their self esteem.

If the fathers in the compilation are above your skill level, don’t despair. Everyone had a first time.

Step Up Dads! Real men care for the total wellbeing of their children, including skin and hair. This is not vanity, this is HEALTH.

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