Basics 101

Water

water-poured-into-glass

This will be your new best friend. Learn to love it. You will need to drink more of it and you will need to put more of it in your hair. The main ingredient in most if not all the products you will be using will be water aka aqua. Water quenches your hair’s thirst period

Wash that hair: You should wash your hair at least one a week. Yes I know to many of us black girls this may be new.  A too-dry, too-oily, or clogged scalp can weaken hair and even cause it to fall out. If you moisturize your hair everyday or every other day it means by the end of the week you have product build up. The moment there is product build up on your hair and scalp your hair become weakened, products starts to just sit onto of the hair instead of penetrating and giving it that ‘goodness’ your products should be giving. Plus if you deep condition every week this further strengthens your hair making it more likely to retain length

 

Oils

oils

Know your oils. Learn the best oils for your hair. this will take a bit of trial and error but be patient you hair will love you once you figure out what it wants. i will give a detailed look into the most essential oils

 

Wide tooth comb

31L73jSMiDL

This will be your best friend. Stop tugging you hair with fine tooth combs. Learn how to use brushes for fine hairs and sleek looks. If you have a fine tooth combs TRASH em’. Your hair will love this during detangling

 

Sulphate free shampoo

enhanced-buzz

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) the dreaded words in hair care.

 

Leave in vs moisturizer

“A typical leave-in conditioning formulation was created to fortify the hair with strength and/or moisture, aid in detangling, and provide ease of styling without weighing down the hair or creating a buildup. This is usually a third step after cleansing and conditioning, but it can also be used as a daily refresher. The leave-in concoction is the lightest form of conditioning compared to the rinse out or deep conditioner and serves best as a quick, light means for elasticity, hydration, and manageability.” Naturally curly

“A good moisturizer can be very helpful in retaining water levels within the hair strand, helping to maintain the integrity of the hair. A good moisturizer will have both hydrophilic molecules that will attract and hold moisture to the hair strand and hydrophobic agents that will seal and protect the newly added moisture” Naturally curly

“A leave-in conditioner is a conditioning product that you do not have to rinse out of your hair. These contain humectants and help attract moisture back into the hair, which create a stronger, more flexible hair strand. Moisturizers have all the goodies you know and love, like shea butter, to intensely hydrate curls, coils, kinks, and waves, plus soybean oil to soften and strengthen it too…The only difference between a leave-in conditioner and a moisturizer is that a leave-in conditioner is meant to leave in your hair to condition your hair or refresh your hair on a daily basis…A moisturizer is an intense, slightly denser lotion that can be applied to course, thick hair, as it can weigh down fine hair.” –Carol’s Daughter Representative

I know traditionally speaking in my country, women love that jelly lol aka petroleum-based products. That is what we grew up using and you know how us black folk are with old traditions. Petroleum based products don’t let your hair breathe. They just sit on your hair preventing moisture from penetrating your hair. Next time you pick up a product make sure you real the ingredients, if it has petroleum in it PUT IT DOWN!
The wonders of shea butter
shea-butter-in-bowl
“Shea butter is a product of theshea-karite tree. The nuts from this tree are harvested, cracked, grilled and pounded. Once the nuts have been pounded, they are boiled for a long period of time and the fat, or shea butter, rises to the top. This rich unrefined shea butter is scooped out of the water and allowed to cool” Treasured Locks.

Shea butter is a rich source of moisture, vitamins and fat for your skin and hair. Shea butter is essential to healthy hair. It moisturizes hair, reducing dryness and hence breakage. You can use shea butter on your scalp and on your strands. Shea butter can be used as a leave in deep conditioner and it can also be used for styling and moisturizing especially for those with dry damaged hair. Shea butter is solid at room temperature but melts when rubbed between your fingers. You can use it in its natural form or you can make fluffy whipped Shea butter or masques
Also go for products that are shea butter based eg Shea moisture range or products that have shea butter as a key ingredient.
Dith the heat
Hair-Appliances
If you want to retain length and grown your hair use minimum heat appliances on your hair. If need be use your blow drying on low heat or cold air. Always use a hair protectant for those times you need to straighten your hair. Heat removes moisture from hair leaving it dry and sometimes damaged. Learn to air dry your hair after washes.
Deep conditioning
I cannot stress about deep conditioning enough. Deep conditioning just means you sit with your conditioner in your hair for +20min. You sit under a steamer or dryer for added effects. I will be writing a post dedicated to deep conditioning so look out for that

(Moisture + Protein = Healthy Hair)

Damaged hair tends to split and break, leaving you with dull, frizzy looking hair. There are lots of reasons why hair becomes damaged, including hair color and chemical straightening services, heat styling, over-washing, and environmental factors. Usually when hair starts snapping off, it’s because the elasticity is off. Hair elasticity refers to your hair’s ability to stretch and return to its original length without breaking. If you want to test the elasticity of your hair simply pull a stand of hair from 4 different parts of you head, stretch the hair . if it stretches easily and bounces back to its original state your hair has normal porosity. If it remains stretched or it breaks of you now have to take some corrective measures. Unfortunately for us black sisters especially us relaxed ones we always have to struggle with this beast called moisture/protein balance. Consider your hair to be a garden and the hair a plant. Moisture would be the water and protein the dirt. If for any reason there is too much dirt and no water the plant can’t grow. If there is too much water and not enough dirt the plant can’t grow either. It’s the same synergistic relationship that moisture and protein have together, and keeping the hair balanced between the two is very important. It is the most important thing that you can do for your hair. If you learn to listen to your hair you will find out what it is trying to tell you. Hair that does not bounce back to its original state is weak and needs some deep protein treatment to strengthen it. If hair break easily it is moisture deficient and needs some deep moisture treatment. Have you ever noticed when you comb your hair that there will be little broken pieces of hair all over the sink or floor? that means you have to infuse moisture into your hair. Hair breaks when too much protein fills a strand and there is not enough moisture to lubricate hair bonds.

Know what to do when

I saw this pyramid blackhairinformation.com and found it very interesting and helpful. It basically just shows you what you need to do and when

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