10 Tips to Grow Longer Natural Hair September 29 2018
When you’re trying to grow a healthy mane, it’s always a good idea to look at tips to grow longer natural hair… even if you’re already knowledgeable about curls. Constant reminders create lifelong habits.
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Have you been dreaming of having long hair for a while? Long healthy hair can be your reality if you take the right approach. Just the fact that you’re avoiding strong relaxer chemicals is a great first step to having healthy, strong hair.
In this post, you’ll find 10 tips and techniques you can do to take your natural hair to the next level. If you want longer, thicker or healthier hair, keep reading.
1. Do Deep Conditioning. This is hands-down one of the best ways to infuse nutrients into the shaft. You can make your own deep conditioners, or you can purchase a branded product. Try and do your deep conditioning with a little heat, for effectiveness. To do this, put on a heat cap, use a steamer, or sit with the conditioner under the dryer.
2. Strengthen with Protein. If you’ve used excessive heat styling, have colored your hair or used other products that are damaging to your tresses, you may have high porosity hair that can easily become too dry. Dry curls are always more prone to breakage than moisturized hair. Protein treatments can help to patch up the holes in damaged hair so that you can better retain some of the moisture. Protein helps the hair become stronger.
3. Wear Protective Styling. If you’re serious about growing your hair out, you’ll want to protect it at least part of the time by using protective styling. Protective styling works because you can cover the ends while your hair grows. However, be careful of extension styles that damage the root. Individual braids can do more harm than good if they’re installed so tight that they’re causing permanent alopecia.
4. Use Good Hair Ties. One thing is often overlooked among naturals, and that is breakage from hair ties. Conventional drug store hair ties were not made for natural curls. They are abrasive, too small, and carry elastic underneath. It’s not enough to avoid metal clasps. The white elastic bands you see underneath conventional hair ties spell danger for curls. Use Snappees instead. They’re made of soft, silky nylon, so they’ll stretch and won’t damage your mane.
5. Wear a Satin Bonnet at Night. Do you see a lot of frizz and no curl definition at the back of your head? If the back looks worse than the front, you probably have a friction issue. Your head is rubbing against your pillow too much at night. Wear a satin bonnet or silk scarf to protect your hair for the 6-8 hours you lay your head down each night.
6. Steam Your Hair. Hair steaming is one of the lesser known hydration treatments for natural hair, but it can make a massive difference to the way your hair looks and feels. You should add this to your regimen if your hair tends to be on the dry side.
Check out CurlCollege, where I teach an instructional course that gives the ins and outs of hair steaming.
7. Watch for Friction. Pillow cases are not the only type of friction. Are you having trouble growing your hair past your shoulders? Be careful for abrasive car seat headrests and clothing. Sweaters can often be too rough for curls, and even cotton shirts can be too drying.
Try choosing fabrics that you’d want your curls to rest on, like a silky blouse. Wear a silk scarf around your neck to protect on days when you’re wearing something too abrasive. And if you have no scarves or silk shirts, lift your hair off your shoulders by doing an updo. You may also want to place a satin bonnet over your car seat headrest if you have a long daily commute.
8. Use Water-Based Products. Products that list water or aloe vera as the first ingredient are hydrating to the hair shaft and will help to reduce breakage. Your shampoos, conditioners, and styling products should all be water-based and contain slip.
These moisturizing products will help your curls slide apart and you’ll be able to avoid tangles. Applying water-based, moisturizing products is the way to go if you want longer hair. Using sulfate-free shampoos is a must too.
9. Finger Detangle. It’s usually not necessary to rake a tool through your hair every week unless you’re heat-styling or using other methods that require the hair to be completely tangle-free.
Fingers are smoother, and they’ll be able to gently guide curls apart better than any comb or brush can. Plus, your own fingers will take care of your ends so that you can retain length. Take any rings off when you finger detangle and avoid raking with sharp fingernails.
10. Keep it Organized. Curly hair can easily tangle and break when it’s left to roam free, and this can be a problem, especially on wash day. Getting in the shower without sectioning your hair will create a lot of tangles and work.
Instead, part your hair into 4-6 sections to keep it organized and manageable. You can still wear it in a wash and go or an afro during the day, but then aim to keep it organized on wash day.
Growing longer hair takes time and patience, especially when your mane is natural. However, if you keep practicing the same techniques over a long period of time, you WILL reach your goal. Stick to your regimen and keep your eyes on the prize!
What about you? Do you have any tips to grow longer, natural hair?
Rice Water for Natural Hair Growth September 22 2018 3 Comments
Many naturals who’ve tried rice water for natural hair growth have reported back fantastic results. But does it really work?
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It’s always an interesting thing when we hear about new stuff to try on our natural curls. We scour through YouTube vids to see other’s results. We mull it over for days, weeks, or even months. And then we finally make a decision to cave in and buy, or to start looking for something else instead.
In the case of the rice water… there’s almost nothing to buy because rice is so cheap! So, this may be a winner if you find that it works for your hair.
This post will discuss rice water for hair growth. By the end if this article, you’ll know whether you want to try it out on your natural curls.
What is Rice Water for Natural Hair?
Rice water methods come to us from the Yao women of China. They have used the water to grow their locks long and strong for centuries and they are globally recognized as having the longest hair in the world.
They make the water from soaking rice in a large plastic tub for a day or two, and then they use it to rinse or wash their hair.
The proof is in the pictures. Their hair is not only over 6 foot long, but it is thick, healthy, and vibrant.
The Benefits of Rice Water for Hair Growth
Feeds the Hair Nutrition. Rice is loaded with B, E, C, and K vitamins—all of which help to create strong hair. It is rich in magnesium, calcium, potassium, manganese, phosphorous, zinc, iron, and selenium.
Strengthens Hair. Rice is an abundant source of amino acids, the building blocks of protein. Have you heard about rice protein? Vegan bodybuilders use it to build muscle. Rice’s protein can be used to make stronger hair.
Stimulates Hair Growth. Fermented rice water contains pitera. This unique yeast speeds the follicle cell regeneration process and aids in fast hair growth.
Increases Elasticity. Rice water can dramatically improve your hair’s ability to stretch without breaking. More elasticity will help you to retain your hair’s length and grow your mane longer.
How to Make Rice Water for Natural Hair
Women can choose between two different types of rice water: Plain or fermented. Fermented involves more time, but the pitera effect is much stronger than plain.
Here are instructions for making rice water:
Rice Water for Natural Hair Recipe
½ Cup Rice
About 3 Cups Water (distilled optional)
1. Rinse rice under cool water in a strainer.
2. Place the rice in a pot along with the water.
3. Bring to a boil and remove from heat.
4. Pour it into a non-metallic heat-proof container and let the preparation cool.
5. Transfer to an applicator bottle for use or continue by following the fermenting instructions below.
Fermenting Instructions for Rice Water
After you prepare your rice water, you can use it as is, or you can take it a step further by fermenting the solution. Fermenting will strengthen the rice water and make it more effective at rejuvenating the scalp’s hair follicles.
To ferment, follow these instructions:
1. Let the prepared rice water sit at room temperature for 12-24 hours.
2. Transfer the water back to a pot after 24 hours and re-boil.
3. Let it cool to a warm temperature.
4. Transfer the rice water to an applicator bottle and use.
How to Use Rice Water for Natural Hair
Rice water has several uses, and they will all benefit your natural hair if you do them regularly.
Here are some ways to incorporate rice water into your natural hair regimen:
Rice Water Rinse. This is probably the most common way to use rice water. First shampoo and condition your hair with your favorite products. Then apply the rice water with an applicator or spray bottle, and leave it in your hair for 45-60 minutes. Then rinse in the shower.
Rice Water Spray. Rice water contains many helpful vitamins that your hair can use throughout the week. An easy way to work rice water into your regimen is to spray it on your hair mid-week.
Try using your favorite aromatic essential oils for this spray, or use growth oils like lavender or rosemary. To make this spray, use distilled water and store the rice water spray in the refrigerator. Using distilled water and the refrigerator will cut down on bacteria and mold from collecting in the container.
Rice Water with No-Poo. Have you been experimenting with using no shampoo? Rice water will be more effective than using plain water because it has nutrition that can feed the hair shaft and a special yeast (pitera) that can rejuvenate the scalp.
Before a Co-Wash. Using the rice water after the conditioner step in the co-wash method will help to cleanse the scalp before you apply the conditioner to your strands. Rice water will also help with follicle repair and hair growth.
Rice water will last for up to one week when stored in the refrigerator.
Using rice water daily in a spray bottle, or weekly as a rinse does a lot for natural hair. Plus, it’s inexpensive—something that is super helpful for naturals on a budget.
Have you tried rice water for natural hair growth, and if so, what were the results?
How to Repair Your Transitioning Hair September 15 2018
So, you’ve recently decided to go natural and now you’re wondering how to repair your transitioning hair. You’re most likely super excited about transforming into your new self, yet you’re not quite ready to do a big chop.
Are you unknowingly causing damage to your hair? Get the Natural Hair Mistakes Free E-Guide to make sure!
And you probably already have a long list of reasons for going natural, including the self-acceptance aspect and wanting to reduce chemical usage.
Going natural is a smart move, and your hair is going to look amazing if you take care of it right. In this post, you’ll find out how to transition from relaxed to natural hair so you can have the healthiest hair possible.
Why Transitioning Hair Needs Special Care
If you have two textures right now, you might be having trouble keeping it healthy and free of breakage. Transitioning hair is especially susceptible to breakage at the line of demarcation. This line represents the point at which the natural hair meets the relaxed hair.
You might notice that your hair tends to break around this point, if you study the broken strands. Do your broken strands have a root attached? If you can see the root, it has shed from the scalp.
However, if you see that the broken strand has snapped toward the middle and is mostly straight, it means you’d benefit from repairing your transitioning hair.
Just learning and practicing natural hair care will take you far with your transitioning hair. Then you can add 2-3 extra things to your regimen to take care of the hair at the line of demarcation.
How to Repair Transitioning Hair
Here is a list of some things you can do right now to improve your transitioning hair.
Protein Treatments. Transitioning hair needs protein for strength, and protein treatments are hands-down the best way to repair damaged hair. You may already be familiar with this treatment, as they’re commonly used with both natural and relaxed hair.
However, with transitioning hair, you’ll want to do a different routine. Instead of strengthening the entire strand, try doing frequent protein treatments to the line of demarcation. You can still apply it to the whole strand if you need to, but then do an additional protein treatment on the line of demarcation only.
Deep Conditioning. Curly hair needs moisture, and doing regular deep conditioning treatments will help to infuse moisture into the hair shaft. Deep conditioning treatments will soften your hair and prevent breakage at the line of demarcation. Use a heat cap or a plastic shower cap when you condition to allow the cuticles to open and receive the nutrition.
Use Products with Slip. Slip is a beauty industry term that refers to how slippery a product is. Slip will allow your strands to slide apart easier and help you avoid tangles. Tangles tend to lead to breakage, so preventing them will help.
Sulfate-Free Shampoo. You may have gotten used to using a conventional shampoo with your relaxed hair because it was inexpensive and widely available. But you should always choose sulfate-free shampoos with transitioning hair. You’ll find them less drying and your hair will be easier to detangle.
In fact, you should start experimenting with different natural product lines, to see which ones your hair likes best. Not all-natural products are low in chemicals, so be sure and eyeball the ingredients list first.
Co-washing. Co-washing is popular among naturals, and it can be very helpful when you use it in the right way. Shampoos can cause both dryness and tangles, but you don’t want to completely avoid washing your scalp. Keeping your scalp clean and unclogged is a must if you want your hair to grow. So, don’t completely skip the shampoo.
Instead, use co-washing during the week to give your hair an extra hydration and conditioning boost. You can always keep a water spray bottle on hand for mid-week usage, but there’s nothing like getting your hair completely soaked in water in the shower. Do the co-washing as much as you can during the week.
Finger Detangling. You can easily rake a comb through relaxed hair, but with natural hair, it’s a different story. Natural hair quickly becomes tangled because of all the tiny curls. Use your fingers to detangle your hair instead of a comb.
You’ll find that you’re able to feel and gently guide knots apart better than a comb can. It’s a good idea to do finger detangling even after you’ve transitioned too.
Trimming. Cutting your hair a little more often than usual will help you get rid of your relaxed hair sooner. Normally, you might trim 2-3 times per year. Shifting to 4-6 trims per year will put you on a faster path of getting rid of your relaxed and damaged ends.
Satin Bonnet. Using a satin bonnet at night will help to save your strands from breakage. Rubbing your head against a cotton pillow case all night tends to make transitioning hair dry and frizzy. Use a satin bonnet or silk scarf at night to protect your transitioning hair. You’ll like being able to make your hairstyles last longer too.
Protective styles. Protective styling has a lot to offer transitioning hair. This is a great time to place your hair in crochet styles or goddess braids. These extension styles won’t pull your roots, as long as you don’t make it too tight. Plus, it will protect the line of demarcation and allow your hair to grow out underneath. Then, at some point, you can trim the last bit of relaxed hair.
If you follow these tips, you should be able to save your hair from breakage until you are finally ready to chop away the relaxed ends.
Are you transitioning? What are some things you’ve done to repair your transitioning hair?
Teas That Promote Fast Hair Growth September 07 2018
Curious about teas that promote fast hair growth? If you’re struggling with short hair or tresses that just won’t grow, you might want to invest in some herbal tea.
Can you really sip your way to healthy hair? It may seem a little far-fetched, especially if you’re not a big tea drinker. But tea can have a profound effect on health and wellness. Women across all cultures have drunken tea for centuries to beautify the skin and hair.
In this post, you’ll find out about the benefits of drinking tea and how you can use them to increase hair growth. By the end of this article, you’ll know exactly what herbal tea will do for you and which ones to buy to speed hair growth.
The Benefits of Drinking Tea for Hair Growth
Drinking tea has a healing effect on the body which ultimately leads to healthy skin, well-functioning follicles, and hair growth.
Teas have the opposite effect of soda, and they can help to beautify your skin and hair while healing the body. Herbs can be used as medicine to heal the body, and that makes a huge difference when you’re trying to grow hair.
Here are some of the benefits of drinking tea for the hair and scalp:
Purifies the Blood. As you probably know, toxins can seriously impair your bodily function and make it difficult to grow hair. Certain herbal teas work to help the liver, skin, and kidneys eliminate toxins from your body so your cells can perform better.
Stimulates Circulation of the Scalp. There are several herbs that are scientifically proven to stimulate blood flow. Teas help to activate your follicle cells, so they can work to grow hair.
Feeds the Follicles Nutrition. Teas are dried plants that contain several key vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that help to grow hair. You may think that consuming fresh herbs is best, but herbs are usually much more potent in their shrunken, dried state. Drying the plants also makes it easier to store and use.
Strengthens Hair. Herbal tea doesn’t only increase hair growth. It makes the hair stronger because of the rich vitamins and minerals. Drinking tea will reduce breakage and shedding by strengthening your hair from the root.
Best Teas for Hair Growth
Nearly all teas are medicinal, but specific herbal teas have been drunken by women throughout time to rejuvenate skin and scalp cells.
Here are some of the best teas to use for hair growth:
Nettle Leaf, aka Stinging Nettle. This plant is abundant in vitamins A, C, D, K, and B. It is also rich in silica, potassium, iron, sulfur, and amino acids—all of which help to grow and strengthen hair. Nettle’s cleansing properties help to clear toxins away from the body. This tea can reduce shedding and speed hair growth when taken internally. You can also use this tea topically as a rinse to improve the scalp and hair.
Horsetail Tea. As the name suggests, horsetail tea can help to give you strong and shiny hair. Horsetail tea is also known as Equisetum, and you can drink it to reduce shedding and promote hair growth. Horsetail tea contains a high amount of silica, which helps to improve the scalp and create stronger hair. Also try mixing the tea with growth-stimulating essential oils and massaging it into the scalp for added benefit.
Green Tea. You’ve probably consumed green tea before, and maybe you even drink it regularly. Did you know it helps with hair growth? Green tea contains EGCG (epigallocatechin gallate), an antioxidant that stimulates hair growth. The leaf also is a known DHT-blocker. DHT (Dihydrotestosterone) is an androgen responsible for hair loss. So, by drinking green tea, you are warding off erosion of the hair follicle. You can also stimulate hair growth by using green tea as a rinse.
Rosemary Tea. Rosemary tea will increase blood circulation when you drink it. This stimulation results in thicker and healthier hair growth. Rosemary also contains darkening agents that will help to cover your grays naturally over a long period of time when you use it as a rinse.
Peppermint Tea. Peppermint is a popular herb for hair growth, and you’ll find it in many forms. There isn’t a lot of evidence that drinking it can help with hair growth, but using it as a rinse will increase cellular activity and lead to faster growth.
There are many more teas that aren’t listed here that can help with hair growth, but this is the perfect starter list for anyone who’s new to drinking tea for the hair and scalp.
How to Make Tea at Home for Healthy Hair Growth
Teas are a great alternative to sodas and alcohol, and they are perfect for boosting hair growth. Teas help to cleanse the body of toxins so that your blood cells can transport nutrients to the follicles better. And they help to stimulate the blood of the scalp, resulting in faster and thicker hair growth.
You can drink your teas cold in the summers, and hot in the winters. To make a warm cup of tea, heat water to boiling, then pour it into a cup.
Most teas perform best with recently boiled water. This means you boil the water and then let it cool for one minute before steeping the tea. Let the tea steep according to package directions, which can be anywhere from 3-10 minutes.
To make a cold cup of tea, let your hot tea cool, pour it into a tall glass and mix in sweetener (optional). Then drop in a few ice cubes and enjoy.
Herbal teas generally do not have harsh side effects, but you should always consult a doctor first, especially if you’re pregnant.
What about you? Are you drinking teas that promote hair growth, and if so, have they helped?
The Importance of pH Balance in Natural Hair August 25 2018
Wondering why you should bother with the pH balance of your natural hair? Using pH balanced products is often overlooked among naturals.
Haircare manufacturers don’t usually list whether a product is pH balanced and it can be difficult to get a straight answer if you ask. This can be confusing, especially if you’re new at pH balancing your hair and are unsure about the importance of using pH balanced products.
In this post, you’ll find out about pH balancing and how to use it to improve the health of your hair and scalp.
What is pH Balance?
pH means the potential hydrogen, and it is a scale that refers to the acidity or the alkalinity of our bodies, foods, products and other organisms. We use a range of numbers to state the acidity or alkalinity. A pH of 0 is acidic, 7 is neutral, and 14 is alkaline.
Different components on your body have a different acidity level, and it’s important to measure the pH of your body as a whole to determine health.
However, the skin and scalp are unique because they’re affected not only by the foods we eat, but by the beauty products we use.
You should have your doctor test your body’s pH during a physical exam, but you should also pay close attention to the pH of your scalp and hair at home.
Your hair and scalp should have a pH range of between 4.5 and 5.5, which is on the acidic side.
Why Should I Care About the pH of My Natural Hair?
When we’re pH balanced, we can thrive. When we’re unbalanced, medical conditions and other issues take over. Every component of your body has a pH balance and disrupting it can cause a host of problems.
Your hair and scalp are no different. Here is a list of what can happen if you don’t monitor the pH levels:
Dry Hair. Using products that are too alkaline can cause the cuticle to open, and this can cause your hair to lose too much hydration throughout the week. And on the other hand, using products that are too acidic can cause the cuticle to shut. This means water won’t be able to move in through the cuticle to hydrate the shaft.
Scalp Fungus. When you put alkaline products on your hair, it may disrupt your scalp’s acidity and cause scalp fungus and dandruff. Your scalp’s sebum has a pH range of 4.5 to 5.5, and this slightly acidic structure helps to fight bacteria, fungi, and other predators.
Itchy, Irritated Scalp. Throwing off the pH balance can cause your scalp to become dry, oily, itchy, or irritated as it reacts and overworks itself trying to fight microbes and bring the skin to a better range. Dandruff is also a sign that your scalp’s pH may be unbalanced.
What Causes the Scalp and Hair to Become Unbalanced?
If you’re looking for reasons your scalp and hair are itchy, dry, irritated or oily, you should examine your products first.
You’re probably concerned primarily with performance and chemicals like sulfates when it comes to shopping for your natural hair. However, that’s not all you should be worried about.
One of your primary concerns should be to investigate the pH of the products you use on your hair and scalp.
How to Find Products that are pH Balanced for Curly Hair
Manufacturers who are knowledgeable and concerned about pH balancing will hire a chemist or lab to ensure that their formulas are pH balanced. Their products will say “pH balanced” somewhere in the labeling.
If a certain product does not say whether it is pH balanced, do a search on the internet by writing the product name along with the words “pH balanced”. Often, you can find information that others have written and posted online.
Sometimes, you’ll find no information about a product’s pH balancing at all. This is cause for concern. You can contact the manufacturer to ask. However, if they don’t know or they claim the information is proprietary, you should seriously think about discontinuing use. This is especially true if you have scalp issues, breakage, or dry hair.
Another option is to test the pH of the products yourself. Conducting your own tests can be helpful for both store-bought products and your DIY recipes.
How to Test pH of Hair Products
Testing the pH of products is not as hard as it sounds, and it may save you a lot of money in the long run. You’ll be able to better purchase products that are good for your hair and scalp if you look at the pH first.
To test your products, you’ll first need to buy pH test strips. You can buy test strips online at Amazon or from beauty supply shops.
You can follow the instructions on your specific test kit, but here are some guidelines:
1. Pour a little of the product into a clean glass container.
2. Submerge one test stick into the product.
3. Read the results. Product pH readings should always be between 4.0-7.0.
Ingredients That Help to Correct pH for Natural Hair
If you have dry, itchy or irritated scalp, certain ingredients may help, and you can use them alongside your pH balanced products to get your hair and scalp to a healthier state.
Here are two ingredients which are popular for controlling the pH of your hair and relieving scalp conditions.
Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV). ACV has a pH level of 3, but you should always dilute it with water to make it less acidic. Use one part ACV to 2-3 parts water to dilute. You can use this mixture as a final rinse to return the hair to health on wash day or you can place it in a spray bottle and use it throughout the week.
Aloe Vera Juice or Gel. Aloe vera has a pH of 4.5-5.5, and it is very healing. You can use the juice as a spray and you can use the gel in your products or directly on your hair. Aloe will help to normalize your hair’s pH and relieve the scalp of irritation.
Normalizing the pH of your natural hair is one of the most important things you can do during your natural hair journey.
Have you thought about the pH balance of your natural hair, and will you be implementing any of these techniques?
3 Moisturizing DIY Leave-In Conditioners for Natural Hair August 17 2018
Using a moisturizing DIY leave-in conditioner for natural hair is one of the best things you can do for your mane.
DIY hair recipes are ideal because they’re fun, affordable, and you control the ingredients. That means you can avoid chemicals and keep some coins in your purse by buying and blending a few high-quality ingredients yourself.
This is not to say that you can’t benefit from using store-bought leave-in conditioners. It’s just that it’s good to experiment with both purchased and homemade products for your natural curls. That way, you can see what your hair likes best.
Why Use a Leave-In Conditioner?
At first glance, a leave-in conditioner may seem pointless because you’re applying a conditioner after you’d already used one in the shower. And in fact, you may go months or years before you realize that it’s a good idea.
Adding a leave-in conditioner into your regimen will help to give you the soft, moisturized curls you want.
Here are five benefits of leave-in conditioners:
Eases Detangling Process. Trying to detangle your hair on wash day? A leave-in conditioner almost always doubles as a good detangler. A good leave-in will make your detangling session much smoother. In fact, you could even detangle mid-week if you have a quality water-based leave-in conditioner.
Adds Moisture. Most leave-in conditioners use water as a base, and other ingredients to lock in hydration. It’s the locking-in that provides long-lasting moisture to your hair.
Softens Hair. Leave-in conditioners work to further soften your hair after stepping from the shower. You’ll find that your hair looks healthier and shinier if you use a leave-in on wash day.
Saves Time Mid-Week. You don’t always have to get your hair soaking wet to detangle and style. A good water-based leave-in will allow you to dampen the hair enough to style it for a wash and go or to set it for twist-outs.
Protects from Damage. Leave-in conditioners add an extra layer of protection onto your curls. The protection will guard it from UV and frictional damage. However, DIY leave-ins are usually not strong enough to protect from flat irons and blow dryers. If you’re using these heat tools, you should purchase a silicone-based heat protectant. You can still use a leave-in conditioner, but then you’ll want to follow with a heat protectant before heat-styling.
Ready to try making your own leave-in conditioner? The first thing you’ll need is a clean plastic spray bottle. See below for three easy leave-in conditioner recipes!
Easy Leave-In Conditioner
The simplest DIY leave-in conditioner is one that makes use of your favorite store-bought conditioner.
Making a leave-in conditioner out of your regular conditioner is super easy and very affordable. You just need a clean spray bottle and a bottle of your favorite conditioner. It’s important to get the measurements right, otherwise you’ll end up with hair that is filmy or flaky.
1 cup distilled water
4 tablespoons conditioner
1. Pour the distilled water into a clean spray bottle.
2. Add your favorite conditioner.
3. Close the bottle and shake vigorously to mix.
4. Apply this spray after washing your hair or as a mid-week refresher.
DIY Leave-In Conditioner with Aloe
Aloe vera is one of the most hydrating ingredients for hair and you may find that it does more for your hair than plain water.
Aloe vera juice contains several key vitamins, minerals, enzymes, and amino acids--all of which are ideal for hair. Purchase an aloe vera juice that is distilled and that does not require refrigeration. This will allow you to store your leave-in conditioner in your bathroom cabinet.
Avocado oil is one of the best oils for hair, and you’ll find the texture creamier than olive oil. However, you can still use olive oil if you have trouble finding avocado oil.
Keep in mind that this DIY mixture contains no emulsifier. Emulsifiers are usually added to store products to make the texture consistent. Because your DIY mixture contains no emulsifier, you’ll need to shake the bottle well each time you use it.
1 cup distilled aloe vera juice
2 tablespoons favorite conditioner
2 tablespoons avocado oil
1 teaspoon vegetable glycerin (optional)
5-15 drops lavender or other pleasant-smelling essential oil
1. Pour the distilled aloe vera juice into a clean spray bottle
2. Add your favorite conditioner and avocado oil.
3. Add glycerin and lavender or another favorite essential oil.
4. Close spray bottle and shake vigorously.
5. Voila! Your leave-in conditioner is ready to use.
Marshmallow Leave-In Conditioner and Detangler
The Marshmallow Leave-in Conditioner and Detangler is a little more complicated than the first two recipes because you need to use a stove to boil the marshmallow root.
However, marshmallow root contains great slip, making this recipe very valuable for any natural who experiences dry, tangled hair.
This mixture must be stored in the refrigerator to prevent mold, but will last 4-6 weeks.
1 ½ cups water
3 tablespoons marshmallow root
1 ½ tablespoons avocado oil
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
5 drops lavender or other aromatic essential oil
1 teaspoon glycerin
Cheesecloth or fine mesh strainer
1. Place the marshmallow root with the water in a saucepan.
2. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 15-20 minutes.
3. Strain with a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth into a Pyrex cup or other heat-resistant container.
4. Let cool.
5. Pour into a spray bottle and add all other ingredients.
6. Shake before each use.
DIY leave-in conditioners are great for naturals because they’re less irritating for the scalp than the average store brand and they help to detangle curly strands.
Plus, they’re a big money saver. Purchasing a big bottle of each active ingredient and mixing it on your own will take an initial investment, but your price becomes more economical in the long run.
The toxicity level is much lower when you make your own hair supplies too. Your body will enjoy a break from inhaling chemical sprays, and your curls will be all the more natural.
What about you? Which DIY leave-in conditioners for natural hair have you tried and what were the results?
Beginners Guide to Henna for Natural Hair August 11 2018 1 Comment
Have you been wondering about using henna for natural hair? Henna is known to have many benefits for hair, even if you’re not looking to change the color.
The first few times doing henna can be challenging because you need to do a lot of mixing and preparation. Plus, you’ll need to follow specific instructions to make sure your henna treatment is a success.
In this post, you’ll find out some ways you can use henna to soften and condition your hair.
The Benefits of Henna for Natural Hair
Henna is a one-of-a-kind ingredient that could make your natural hair journey much easier. It will be very difficult to stop using henna once you’ve tried it because you’ll immediately see the improvement in your hair.
Here are four benefits:
Improves Scalp Health. Henna improves scalp health by drawing out impurities like fungus and bacteria. Massage it into the scalp well when you apply it to the hair.
Colors Gray Hair. If you’re looking for a way to color your gray hairs without damaging your curls or exposing your body to chemicals, you should give henna a try. Henna will turn gray hair into a coppery red color. If you decide you don’t like the red, you can use indigo powder afterwards to color your red hairs black.
Adds Manageability. Henna smooths and softens natural hair. You’ll find that this conditioning adds manageability and makes your hair easier to maintain.
Strengthens Hair Shaft. Do you have high porosity or damaged hair? Henna binds to keratin and patches gaps along the shaft permanently.
Adds Shine. Henna improves the appearance of hair by patching holes so that your hair can reflect light more. You’ll also find that your hair looks less dull and more vibrant after using henna.
Good Mixers for Henna
Henna needs to be mixed and prepared the night before you apply it. If you do a Google search, you’ll find many websites and videos all dedicated to henna mixers.
Henna takes several hours to marinate, and it is crucial you do it the right way. Otherwise, your henna won’t have the desired effect.
There are many things you can mix your henna with, but the most important thing is to make sure you add an acidic ingredient.
Here are a few good mixers that will activate your henna:
Lemon. The acidic pH of lemon will activate henna overnight. You should especially think about using lemon if you want vibrant color from your henna.
Apple Cider Vinegar. ACV is also very good for bringing out the power in henna and softening hair. Keep in mind that it has a strong smell, and you do need to let the henna sit on your hair for 6-8 hours. So, don’t use ACV If the vinegar scent bothers you.
Black Tea. Black tea is acidic and works well for activating henna. Black tea also reduces shedding. Use black tea to darken the effect of the henna.
Coconut Milk. Using coconut milk is a great way to get the benefit from both ingredients, especially since you’re leaving it on your hair for such a long period. Coconut milk contains protein, it is moisturizing, and it is a good acidic ingredient to add to your henna.
Also try adding essential oils like peppermint, eucalyptus, lavender, and rosemary to your henna. They don’t activate henna, but they do stimulate hair growth.
How to Prepare Henna for Natural Hair
First, you’ll need to decide how much henna to use. If you have shoulder-length hair, you may want to use two boxes (100 grams) so that you can cover your entire head and scalp without fear of running out.
If you have shorter hair, you may be able to get away with using only one box (50 grams).
100 grams of henna powder
1 can of full-fat coconut milk or 1 cup of warm black tea
2 tablespoons lemon juice (optional)
Wooden spoon and non-metallic container
1. Pour your henna powder into a non-metallic bowl.
2. Add the coconut milk or the black tea into the mixture. You can also use a combination of both.
3. Mix with the wooden spoon until smooth.
4. Add warm water if necessary. Consistency should be like thick yogurt.
5. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
How to Apply Henna to Natural Hair
It’s best to begin your henna application in the morning because it will take the entire day. Be sure and cover your floor and counters with newspaper because henna is messy.
You can easily remove henna stains from shiny surfaces, but it is tougher to remove from stone, grout, or very porous showers or counters.
However, you may decide that the messiness of henna is completely tolerable once you see what it can do for your hair.
Most henna users advise against shampooing the hair after rinsing out the henna. And if you’ve applied the henna to your scalp, you may find that it works almost like a cleanser because it draws out impurities and stops itchy scalp conditions.
Always use your favorite deep conditioner after your henna treatment. Henna softens hair, but it can be drying if you don’t follow it with a deep conditioning mask.
1. Apply henna to hair and massage into scalp.
2. Cover your head with a plastic shower cap.
3. Leave the mixture on your head for at least six hours.
4. Thoroughly rinse, but do not shampoo.
5. Apply the deep conditioner and let it sit for 20-60 minutes.
6. Rinse and style.
Henna can help to dramatically improve the condition of natural hair, even though it can be a big project. Try adding this treatment to your regimen once a month for stronger, softer, and shinier curls.
Have you tried henna for natural hair, and if so, what were the results?
Summer Hairstyles for Natural Hair with Your Snappees August 03 2018
Are you looking for a few great summer hairstyles to wear for your natural hair? Curly hair tends to get frizzy during the hot and humid summers, so it’s a good idea to have some ways to get your strands off your face and neck.
Summer is the opportune time to grow an strengthen natural hair. Winter can cause hair to become too hard and brittle, but the hotter months can be the source of fast growth and length retention.
However, you’ll want to shield your hair from the UV as much as possible and wear it off the neck to prevent salty sweat from damaging the ends.
Snappees were made for curly, thick hair, and they’re easy to use on days when you have lots of outdoor activity.
Here, you will find three quick summer hairstyles you can do before you head out to the sun.
Easy High Puff Hairstyle
The high puff tends to be a favorite for naturals because it gives you a chance to rock a stylish ponytail, even when you have short hair.
If you’re new at doing the high puff, you’ll find it difficult at first, and even old veterans struggle with this style. But this style becomes much easier when you have a Snappee or two.
It’s because Snappees allow you to easily draw the hair up into the puff without breakage. And the snapping mechanism makes it so that you don’t have to do further tying.
Snappees come in packs of three, so you’ll always have a choice of how many you want to use for each style. For the high puff hairstyle, you can use one or two Snappees.
Use a single Snappee if you want it fairly tight. It’s best to reserve this hairstyle for only important occasions, and not overdue it. It’s the perfect hair for a job interview or crucial event.
Otherwise, use two Snappees for maintaining looseness around the edges. Two-Snappee high puffs are good to wear on the regular basis because they’re tension-free.
To use two Snappees, just snap one Snappee onto another.
Here’s how to do the high puff hairstyle:
- Gather your hair upwards, to the top of your head to position the puff.
- Smooth the hair with your hands. Use a brush if you need it extra-smooth.
- Let go of the hair and grab a Snappee with two hands. The hair will fall back down a little, but that’s okay.
- Holding the Snappee on each end, draw the hair onto the crown of your head.
- Pull the two ends together and snap.
- Voila! You have a high puff.
- Apply gel to your edges if you like the laid look.
Two Puffs Hairstyle for Curly and Kinky Hair
The two-puff hairstyle is a cute hairstyle for the gym that can really bring out your playful side. To do this hairstyle, first decide where you want to position your puffs—high, middle, or low.
You’ll need one Snappee per side, for a total of two Snappees.
- Part your hair into two sections with a rat tail comb. Tie one side down with a Snappee while you work on the other side.
- Now, gather the hair on the first side into the place where you want the puff to be. Smooth upward to make a high puff, outward to make a middle puff, and downward to make a low puff.
- Use a brush and gel to smooth if necessary.
- Hold the hair while you prop a Snappee end between your hand and the hair.
- Wind the Snappee around the puff. Do not wind too tight, or you’ll cause too much tension on your edges.
- Repeat with the other side, being sure to make the hairstyle symmetrical.
- Use gel to smooth baby hairs and lay edges flat, if desired.
- Place a silk scarf around the hairstyle for 15-20 minutes to increase smoothness.
- You’re done! Enjoy!
Wide & Low Puff Hairstyle
One of the best things about Snappees is the ability to adjust the size by snapping two or more Snappees together. This hairstyle gives the appearance of having longer hair, making it a winner for ladies with short, natural hair.
For this style, you’ll use two Snappees snapped together to form a wide puff.
- Smooth your hair down with your hands and a brush, if needed.
- Use a small amount of water and a little gel to further smooth your hair down and around to the back of your head.
- Let go of your hair and hold on to the snapped Snappees with two hands.
- Place the Snappee under the hair and draw upward slightly.
- Snap the Snappees together at the top, leaving a wide, puff at the center.
- Continue to smooth hair down and lay edges, if desired.
- Place a silk scarf over the hairstyle to smooth baby hairs even further.
- Have fun with this style by incorporating a headband. Snap three Snappees together to make a cute thin band for a fashionable look.
Snappees make your morning routine fast, easy, and stylish. They are particularly good for the summer months when you want to hang outdoors while still looking on point.
You can find Snappees in a variety of colors to match different summery outfits. Be sure and subscribe to the newsletter to get a big discount off your first pack!
What are your favorite ways to wear Snappees?
If you’re looking for protective styles that go beyond twists and bantu knots, you might be wondering about the best and worst extension styles for healthy natural hair.
Extensions and weaves get a bad rap in the natural hair community, and rightly so. Many extension styles are labeled as protective because they cover the ends and promote length retention.
However, some extensions are terrible for hair, because they can damage the root and cause follicle erosion. You may be able to recover from damage if you’re younger than 45 years old.
But cellular reproduction slows once you become middle-aged, and follicle cells that were abused when you were younger may completely shrink and no longer produce hair when you age.
If you’re already suffering from alopecia, you should think twice before installing extensions. You should also reconsider if you have scalp issues like fungus or psoriasis, as extensions can aggravate these conditions.
However, if you have a healthy scalp, you’ll may want to know which extension styles you can rock without damaging your scalp and hair. In this post, you’ll find the best extension styles for healthy natural hair.
Worst Extension Styles
Individual Braids, aka Singles, Microbraids, or Poetic Justice Braids. Individual braids require you to install hundreds of tight braids on the scalp, creating tension on every millimeter of your head. This style can lead to permanent hair loss.
Choosing long extension hair increases the damage because it adds more weight on the follicles. To add to injury, most hair braiders want to do a good job, and make the styles tight.
Many wearers of this style believe that they’ll only have a tension headache for a few days. But the truth is that follicle damage can last a lifetime, long after the physical pain is felt.
Follicle damage can be permanent if the follicles are abused enough, or if your body simply does not want to regenerate the scalp.
It’s best to avoid this extension style. If you must wear Poetic Justice braids, try telling the braider to braid without applying tension.
Also, beware of the time you leave the braids on your natural hair. Leaving the extension hair in too long would give your natural hair the opportunity to intertwine and tangle with the extension hair.
Anything Using Glue or Tape. Gluing and taping hair onto your natural mane can give you alopecia. It may seem like the ideal solution, until you go to remove the glue or tape.
These types of extensions will make it very difficult to regrow edge hair. Edges are already tremendously difficult to regain if you regularly wear extensions or tight puffs and ponytails.
You’ll also find the glue technique being used with wigs. Wigs can be a great protective hairstyle if you don’t ruin it with glue or place the combs too tight along the scalp.
Best Extension Styles
Choose your extension styles carefully if you want to avoid long-term consequences. The best extension styles will protect your ends so that you can grow your hair to a desired length, without eroding the hair follicle.
Crochet Hair. Crocheting hair onto cornrows is one of the best extension styles. It allows you to place the extension hair onto natural braided hair instead of right at the follicle. This is a healthier process that will place less tension on your roots.
Be careful about which extension hair you buy. Marley hair and other rough synthetics will be too abrasive for your roots and scalp, leading to thinning after repetitive use.
Choose hair that is smooth and silky. You want to try and create the same protective effect as when you wear a silk scarf or satin bonnet at night, so be sure to place soft extensions on your natural hair.
Crochet hair needs to be removed after about four weeks. However, you can wash your scalps while you have the braids in, by strategically spraying shampoo in between the cornrows, massaging, and rinsing.
Goddess Braids. Goddess braids are helpful for naturals because they minimize damage. Goddess braids are like huge cornrows, but with extension hair. You can have only one goddess braid, or as many as ten. This style of braid is thick, making it the exact opposite of microbraids.
Avoid making the goddess braids too tight to preserve your scalp’s cellular function. Also, be sure and remove goddess braids after four weeks.
Clip-In Extensions. Clip-in extensions are a great alternative for people who want to go out in public with extensions but have their hair free the rest of the time.
You’ll have the opportunity to be extension-free each day. Using clip-ins means you can scrub your scalp as much as you like and take care of your hair underneath.
Leaving clip-ins in while you sleep can destroy your hair and create unnecessary wear and tear on the extensions. Always remove your clip-ins when you sleep.
Doing so will give your hair and scalp a nice recovery time. This extension-free time will give your scalp a much-needed rest from the weight and clips.
Your daily recovery period can last anywhere from 8-24 hours, depending on how many hours you wear the clips. Clip-in extensions tend to be less damaging, especially if you place the clips onto cornrows.
Extension styles can be good or bad for your natural hair, depending on which one you choose. Select your style wisely, don’t pull the hair too tight, and avoid rough synthetic textures to keep your own mane healthy and strong.
Do you have a favorite extension style you like to wear on your natural hair?
3 Easy DIY Deep Conditioning Treatments July 20 2018
Wondering if DIY deep conditioning treatments will help you grow healthy, long hair? You may already be doing some experimenting on your own with positive results, but it can be time-consuming to figure out which ingredients will help you soften, detangle, and grow natural hair.
Before you read this article make sure you're NOT making these 10 Natural Hair Mistakes!
Adding a few of your own ingredients to a store-bought brand will work just fine to create healthy hair. But you may find that making your own concoctions will take your hair to the next level.
In this post, you’ll find three recipes you can use to improve your natural hair’s strength, moisture, and manageability.
Why You Should Deep Condition 2-4 Times Per Month
Aim to deep condition every time you wash, or at least twice per month. It may sound excessive, but it can actually save you time and energy by making your hair easier to detangle and style.
Detangling your hair is one of the most difficult things about being natural. It takes a long time and it can be a real struggle. And if you do it wrong, you come out with broken strands at the end of a long wash day.
Here's a video Keziah shot on How To Detangle Your Hair In Less Than 15 Minutes.
You may have already invested in a detangle spray or leave-in-conditioner, but why not use a good deep conditioner too?
When you use deep conditioners, your hair becomes more manageable so that you don’t have to spend a long time physically detangling. It’s like spending more time with a plastic cap on your head, and less time raking a comb through your tangled hair.
Deep conditioning treatments always win over styling tools because they improve your hair, instead of damaging it. Plus, you’ll be less tired on wash day because deep conditioners don’t take as much physical effort as combing and detangling does.
Besides the detangling factor, deep conditioned hair looks and feels smoother and shinier. Deep conditioning every time you shampoo will help you grow a long and healthy mane faster.
Recipe 1: Detangling Deep Conditioner for Natural Hair
This DIY recipe will help to greatly reduce the time you spend detangling. Avocado packs on the nutrition, while apple cider vinegar and shea butter help to detangle. Grapeseed oil adds vitamin E and shine. The essential oils in this recipe will help to grow your hair and retain length.
Consider using this deep conditioner with a hooded dryer, especially if you have low porosity hair. Heat will help to open the cuticles and increase penetration into the hair shaft.
1 avocado pitted
1/4 cup grapeseed oil
1/2 cup shea or mango butter
3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
5-15 drops peppermint, lavender, or rosemary essential oils
1. Place all ingredients in a blender and mix until smooth.
2. Pour the mixture into a container.
3. Part your hair into 4-6 sections and apply the conditioner.
4. Cover your hair with a plastic cap and let it sit 20-60 minutes.
5. Rinse and style.
6. Save and freeze any leftovers for the next wash day.
Recipe 2: Coconut Milk Deep Conditioner for Smoothing Curls & Reducing Shrinkage
Coconut milk is 3-4 times more beneficial for your hair than coconut oil. While both penetrate the shaft well, the milk contains water, electrolytes, protein and vitamins that the oil doesn’t have. Plus, the milk has moisturizing fat too.
So, why isn’t everybody using coconut milk instead of the oil? It may be because using the milk is more complicated and time-consuming. Plus, it goes rancid when not refrigerated. This means you have to rinse it out after application, unlike coconut oil which can be left in the hair for the entire week.
You’ll find that making a big batch of your DIY conditioners will save you time and energy. This recipe makes 4-5 servings. Separate and freeze the servings to use whenever you want.
1 can coconut milk
3 tablespoons honey
5-15 drops eucalyptus or rosemary essential oils
1. Pour coconut milk into a medium-sized bowl.
2. Stir in honey.
3. Add essential oils and mix well.
4. Divide the mixture into 4-5 servings, depending on the length of your hair.
5. Part your hair into 4-6 sections and apply the mixture to your scalp and hair.
6. Cover with a plastic cap for 30 minutes to 2 hours.
7. Rinse and style.
Recipe 3: Hair Growth Deep Conditioner for Natural Hair
Banana contains biotin, a B vitamin that aids in hair growth. It also has potassium, other vitamins, and a host of nutrients for hair. Banana must be thoroughly blended when you use it in recipes, so you’ll need a powerful blender. If you don’t have a high-wattage blender, use a jar of banana baby food instead.
Avocado oil is one of the only oils that penetrates through the cuticle to reach the hair shaft. If you have trouble finding avocado oil, feel free to use extra-virgin olive oil instead. These penetrative oils do not stimulate the scalp, but they do help you retain the hair you’ve worked hard to grow.
Yogurt softens and conditions hair, while combating fungi and other bacteria that attack the scalp. Greek yogurt is especially good for hair because it is thick and less runny. Be sure to buy full fat yogurt to get the extra moisture.
Glycerin is a humectant that will help draw in water from the air into your hair. Not all hair reacts well to glycerin and the effectiveness often depends on your city’s humidity level. It’s okay to leave it out of the recipe. You can also try honey instead.
This recipe contains 1-2 servings, depending on the length of your hair. Be sure to freeze any leftovers for another wash day.
1 ripe banana or 2 4-oz jars of banana baby food
1/4 cup plain, full-fat Greek yogurt
3 tablespoons avocado oil
1 tablespoon glycerin
1. Place all ingredients in a blender and mix until smooth.
2. Apply the mixture to your hair.
3. Cover with a plastic cap and let it sit 20-60 minutes.
4. Rinse and style.
Using a weekly deep conditioner will give your curly hair the moisture it craves, and it will help you save time and energy on wash day. Of course, use your Snappee hair ties so that you don't damage your hair using old regular hair ties.
Which DIY deep conditioners do you like to use on your natural hair?
The Benefits of Avocado Oil for Natural Hair July 13 2018
If you’re looking for the best oil for your mane, you might want to check out avocado oil for natural hair. Avocado oil is gaining popularity because of its long-lasting effects on the health of natural curls.
Before you read this article make sure you're NOT making these 10 Natural Hair Mistakes!
Learning about a new oil is exciting. It helps to do your research and get all the information before you try something new on your hair, especially since avocado oil is a bit pricier than the conventional olive and coconut oils.
In this article, you’ll find out the benefits of avocado oil, so you can decide whether to add it to your regimen.
Avocado Oil is Packed with Nutrition for Hair and Scalp
Avocado oil is loaded with oleic fatty acids, vitamins, phytosterols, and minerals. This type of nutrition makes it perfect for any beauty regimen.
It contains vitamins A, B1, B2, B5, C, D, E and K—all of which feed the hair nutrients. Avocado oil also features potassium, lecithin, and chlorophyll which help to prevent aging of the scalp.
It has a creamy texture and the color is slightly green. This oil doesn’t smell as good as coconut oil, but it will probably be better for your complexion because of its monounsaturated content. You might find that avocado oil clogs pores less and causes fewer acne breakouts than coconut oil.
Using Avocado Oil for Length Retention and Hair Growth
Here is how avocado oil can help to give you longer, thicker hair:
Repairs the Scalp. It also contains lecithin which boosts collagen for healthy hair growth. This oil benefits the scalp, especially if you have chemical burns from relaxers or alopecia from wearing tight braids.
Antimicrobial. Avocado oil is known for its antifungal, antibacterial, and antiviral properties, making it ideal for protection against microbes. It also has antioxidants to fight free radicals and aging of the hair follicles.
Fights Dandruff and Psoriasis. Avocado oil benefits those with a dry, flaky scalp and it may help to heal psoriasis. Massage it into your scalp 20 minutes before shampooing.
Helps Retain Length. Avocado oil is rich in fatty acids, making it one of the most moisturizing oils for hair. It is creamier than olive oil and you may even find it more suitable for creamy DIY recipes.
Promotes Hair Growth. Avocado oil doesn’t exactly stimulate hair growth, but it does promote it by healing the follicles and creating an excellent environment for growing hair. Use avocado oil as a carrier and pair it with hair growth essential oils like peppermint and eucalyptus.
Fights Inflammation of the Scalp. Avocado’s high oleic acid content is scientifically proven to combat inflammation. It also contains lutein and vitamin E, two additional inflammation fighters. Use the oil along with peppermint essential oil and aloe vera to soothe an irritated scalp.
Does Avocado Oil Penetrate the Hair Shaft?
Avocado oil is one of the only ingredients that has molecules small enough to penetrate the hair shaft. This means that it can enter the cuticle and protect the water inside the cortex. Avocado oil will help to seal moisture inside your hair strand if you hydrate with water beforehand.
This highly nutritious oil will feed your hair nutrients and its antioxidant properties will protect it against damage from the sun and other elements.
See below for the best tips on benefiting from this nutritional oil.
How to Use Avocado Oil for Healthy Hair
Here are four of the most popular ways to use avocado oil on your natural hair:
Hot Oil Treatments. One of the amazing things about avocado oil is that it survives high temperatures. In fact, you can even stir fry with it. This oil also stands up well when you heat it and apply it to your strands. Warming the oil first allows the cuticles to open so that the nutrition can reach the shaft. It’s best to heat the oil carefully in a double broiler. Hot avocado oil treatments are especially useful for low porosity types.
Hair Masks. This nutritious oil is the perfect addition to your deep conditioning treatment. Deep conditioning should be done as soon as you notice dryness. Every head of hair is different and there are no exact regimens that fit everyone. However, you can benefit from doing avocado deep condition treatments anywhere from one to four times per month.
LOC Method. Using avocado oil in your hair after you shower is the ideal way to help your hair retain moisture. This oil will help you seal in hydration and will protect the hair shaft from harmful elements like the sun and chlorine. You can also use it as a mid-week refresher by spraying water on your hair, then sealing with the avocado oil. Avocado oil penetrates the hair shaft well, so you’ll want to use it before applying any other oils or creams that may hinder its ability to soak into the shaft. Then apply a heavy or light cream afterward.
Scalp Massage for Hair Growth. Use avocado oil as a carrier for peppermint, lavender, eucalyptus, and rosemary oils for faster hair growth. Avocado oil will help to repair scalp and follicle damage for thicker and longer hair. Place 5-15 drops of essential oil into 2 tablespoons of avocado oil and then massage the oil into your scalp with your fingertips.
It helps to do the massage while inverted, to allow blood to circulate to your head. Bend at the waist with unlocked knees while you massage for a few minutes three times per week if you have a dry scalp or dandruff. If you have an oily scalp, you may only want to massage with oils once per week, and then wash your hair after 20 minutes. You can always experiment with both methods.
Avocado oil is one of the best ingredients for naturals because it nurtures and protects curly hair. Using it frequently will help you grow longer and thicker hair. Just make sure you hydrate with water before using it for the best results.
Now, it’s your turn to discuss. Have you tried avocado for natural hair, and if so, did you like it?
6 Ways to Reduce Shrinkage on 4C Hair July 06 2018 2 Comments
Shrinkage on 4C hair is inevitable but you may be wondering about some ways to reduce it. As you probably already know, 4C hair types experience shrinkage the most because the curls are tighter than the other curl patterns.
Before you read this article make sure you're NOT making these 10 Natural Hair Mistakes!
And this can make it difficult to detangle, manage, and style. In fact, shrinkage can be downright discouraging when you want to do hairstyles like a low bun or twist-out.
Plus, you may be anxious to show off your true length to let people see just how hard you’ve been working to grow your hair out.
Contrary to popular thought, shrinkage is a sign of healthy curls. It means your strands are strong and not limp, dull, or stringy.
However, you may still want to do some things to reduce the shrinkage and make your hair more manageable during the week. In this post, you’ll find 5 ways to reduce shrinkage on 4C hair.
1. Keep it Sectioned and Twisted While Washing
The easiest way to solve shrinkage is to not allow your hair to shrink on wash day. Keep your hair organized in several twists when you wash it. Only take out a twist when it’s time to apply shampoo, conditioner, or for rinsing. You can use your Snappee hair ties for this job.
Even after the shower, only take one twist out at a time to style your mane. You’ll find your hair is less likely to shrink if you keep it in elongated twists while it’s wet or damp.
2. Stretch It
Stretching your natural hair is one of the best ways to get rid of shrinkage. Good stretching techniques are also protective. These hairstyles include twists, braids, low bun, banding, and the African Threading Method.
As you know, 4C curls become tangled easily and the tiny coils cling to each other to form knots. It’s a good idea to stretch your hair because it will make it more manageable and lead to less breakage. Again Snappee hair ties can help you stretch you hair.
Of course, there may be days when you want to rock a wash and go. And it’s perfectly fine to let your hair down some days of the month. You don’t have to do stretching 100% of the time, but you should aim to do it as much as you can to get healthy, long hair.
3. Condition with Coconut Milk
Using coconut milk during the conditioning phase on wash day will help to reduce shrinkage on your final outcome. Coconut milk has a rich fatty acid content and it packs on five grams of protein per cup.
The result is stronger, smoother, and softer strands. Plus, the water inside coconut milk is hydrating and contains several minerals.
If you’re accustomed to applying coconut oil to your hair, you may want to switch to using coconut milk. It contains protein, water, and fat—everything you need to create healthy strands.
Coconut milk has molecules that are small enough to penetrate the hair shaft. That means the coconut water, protein, and fat can enter through the cuticle and feed the shaft hydration and nutrients.
You’ll probably find that your curls are not as tight after using the milk, and that your shrinkage has been reduced.
Use coconut milk alone as your conditioner or mix it into a small amount of deep conditioner. Fresh coconut milk goes rancid quickly, so it can’t be used for a leave-in conditioner. Rinse the coconut milk out after 20 minutes to 1 hour.
Using canned coconut milk is easiest, and it will last for several wash sessions if you divide it into small plastic zipper bags and freeze.
4. Apply Aloe Vera Gel Before Styling
Aloe vera is loaded with hydration, enzymes, and amino acids for hair. These are the building blocks for healthy, strong hair. The gel has smoothing properties and will help to reduce shrinkage when you apply it before using your styling products.
Have you noticed that your hair has more length when it’s wet or hydrated? Aloe vera is one of the only substances on the planet that you could use instead of water.
In fact, some haircare brands opt to include aloe instead of water, resulting in a high-performance product. The hydration from aloe penetrates the hair shaft like water can, and then it feeds the hair nutrients too.
Aloe vera won’t straighten 4C hair, but it will help to smooth and elongate the curl, giving you more manageability.
5. Do Monthly Henna Treatments
Henna doesn’t have to be reserved for coloring gray hairs. It’s an amazing conditioner that will bind to the keratin in your hair and strengthen the strands.
This unique hair dye helps to reduce shrinkage by adding weight to each hair strand at the curve. It will make your hair smoother, softer, and stronger.
Henna deposits along the shaft are permanent, but it will take several treatments over the course of a few months to see a difference in shrinkage.
If you get henna on your Snappee hair ties you can always put it in the washer and dryer to get it off!
6. Use Anti-Frizz Products
Anti-frizz styling products will help to smooth and elongate your curls. Creams and gels are useful for reducing both frizz and shrinkage while you’re doing twist-outs, braid-outs, and even wash and gos.
Look for products which state “anti-frizz” on the front label. Manufacturers formulate anti-frizz products with the intention of smoothing the curl and reducing shrinkage.
Ready to Reduce your Shrinkage?
Keep in mind that if you’re aiming to reduce shrinkage, you’ll likely see some disruption in the curl pattern. Reducing shrinkage on the regular basis may even permanently break the curl pattern.
Treatments like henna may change your curl type, resulting in curls that are not as tight as they once were. It could also result in having two or more different curl patterns on your head, as some curls elongate, and others stay tight.
This can be a problem if your goal is to have defined curls. Reducing shrinkage is helpful if you like to wear your natural hair straight or in updos a lot. But you may not want to change a thing if your goal is to have ultra-defined curls for a wash and go.
However, loosening the curls is inevitable if your goal is to reduce shrinkage. So, you’ll have to decide whether you want defined curls, or looser curls. It’s entirely possible to have both, but it helps to begin with one objective and go for it.
Reducing shrinkage will ultimately make your hair much more manageable, healthy, and less prone to breakage.
If you would like more help with your natural hair then check out Curl College!
What’s your favorite way to reduce shrinkage on 4C hair?