Braid Spray is the generic term for a variety of spray-on hair conditioners that can be used to care for and maintain synthetic hair; in the American Girl Fandom is used for maintenance of doll hair.
Braid Spray Information
Braid spray or braid sheen spray is a gentle spray-on conditioner, mostly made of water with several conditioning herbs, oils, perfumes, and synthetics included.
The product was developed in the Black hair care community to maintain elaborate braided hairstyles. As these hairstyles are complicated to put up, they are worn for extended periods of time - sometimes months. It is not easy or prudent to remove these elaborately done styles or extensions for moisturizing or washing. Because African-textured hair is often curly or kinky, the natural oil the scalp produces doesn't travel down to the ends of the hair, sometimes leaving it dry and brittle. Therefore, hair can break, mat, knot, unwillingly dread, or tangle without regular moisture and care. Braid spray is designed to keep the hair style neat and conditioned without needing to take it down and is simply sprayed onto the braids and scalp and massaged in. Used with spray-in shampoo, hair is healthy and well cared for.
For American Girl Doll Maintenance
American Girl recommends that a doll's hair be damp when brushed or styled to prevent breakage and to use water in a spray bottle. However, doll hair is made of the same hair that is often used for hair extensions or braids--a high-quality Kanekalon. Therefore, the same spray can be used on doll hair to maintain it and keep it soft. It only takes a few sprays to moisturize hair and while the product may feel slightly oily, it is not enough to cause any issues with doll hair. If hair feels extremely oily or greasy, too much has been sprayed on.
As with water, it is important to prevent the spray from going into a doll's eyes to avoid rusting. An average twelve-ounce bottle can last several months regardless of the amount of dolls.
Locating Braid Spray
A person should look in the "ethnic" section of a hair care section in various stores that sell hair care products, or at a Black beauty supply store. The cost of a bottle can range widely depending on brand and location, but most braid sprays can be had for between $4 and $10.