For most naturals, wash day takes an entire day. Wash day comprises of pre-pooing, shampooing, regular conditioning and then deep conditioning.
As a busy natural, I cannot afford to spend a whole day just washing my hair. I try to wash my hair about once a month or as the need arises. My wash day is divided into three simple steps:
*Pre-Poo/Deep conditioning: I usually deep condition with mayonnaise(yes, the mayonnaise we eat) as my pre-poo treatment. Mayonnaise is great for my hair because it makes it shinier, stronger and stops breakage.
I apply the mayonnaise to damp (not wet) hair, cover with a shower cap and apply heat over the shower cap with a blow dryer for 15 minutes.
Deep Conditioning? Check.
Don’t worry, your hair won’t smell of salad after you’re done with the entire wash process 😉
*Shampooing: I shampoo my hair in 4-6 sections with my African black soap in the shower. This takes about 30 minutes.
*Conditioning: I then apply my Alberto vo5 moisturizing conditioner, cover with a shower cap, and leave it in for another 15 minutes with applied heat over the shower cap, or an hour without any heat.
Total time taken:
1 hour with heat applied during pre-poo/deep condition and conditioning.
1 hour and 45 minutes with heat applied only during pre-poo/deep condition.
After washing, apply your leave in conditioner and style hair as desired.
Ideally, hair should be detangled(combed) before washing, but I choose to detangle after the wash process.
Thanks for reading. Hope this method will help you save time. 🙂
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If you’re new in the natural hair community, a few terms used on natural hair blogs, vlogs or pages may confuse you. However, you need not worry because I’m here to help. Here is a list I made of commonly used terms an acronyms.
*ACV: Apple Cider Vinegar. This is used for clarifying (just a fancy name for washing) hair. It also adds shine to the hair.
*BAA: Big ___ afro *covers eyes*. This is the opposite of a TWA. Kinda like what my hair is now.
*Baggying/Greenhouse Effect Method(GHE): This is a process in which you coat your hair with a leave in conditioner -or even just water- at night and cover with a shower cap or plastic bag overnight so that the heat from your body steams the hair making it super moisturized *yum yum*
*Banding: This is a method of stretching the hair using bands.
*BC: Big Chop. This means to cut off all the relaxed ends of the hair, leaving out only the natural hair.
*Breakage: Breakage occurs when the hair actually breaks off. Causes of breakage could be harsh chemical treatments, mechanical damage( e.g. when combing or brushing, rough handling of the hair), excessive heat treatments (blow drying and straightening-flat ironing), et al. This is what a broken hair looks like
*Carrier oils: These are oils that are used to dilute essential oils. They can also be used on their own. Examples are coconut oil, olive oil, avocado oil, sunflower oil, etc.
*Co-Wash: Washing your hair with rinse out conditioner alone. A lot of people use this method to avoid the stripping effect of shampoos but the method has never worked for me because my hair is really full and thick and never lathers, so I end up wasting conditioner. 😥
*Creamy crack: A term used for relaxers.
*DC: Deep Conditoning. A deep conditioner deeply conditions the hair preventing breakage and giving strength to the hair.
*Essential oils: These are concentrated oils that must be diluted with carrier oils before use. Examples are rosemary oil, lavender oil, orange oil, lemon oil, etc.
*EVCO: Extra virgin coconut oil. This is coconut oil that has been minimally processed.
*EVOO: Extra virgin olive oil. This is olive oil that has been minimally processed.
*Humectants: Humectants attract water vapour from the atmosphere into the hair. Common humectants are honey and glycerin. Honey can be used as a pre-poo or conditioning treatment. Glycerin can be added to water in your spray bottle.
*JBCO: This is an acronym for Jamaican Black Castor Oil. This is a special oil that is good for adding thickness and shine to the hair.
*Leave in conditioner: The leave in conditioner works just like regular conditioners. The only difference is that the leave in conditioner is ‘left in’ and not rinsed out.
*LOC: This is a method for moisturizing the hair. LOC stands for liquid, oil and cream. A liquid, preferably water is sprayed on the hair first, an oil is then added to coat the hair strands to prevent moisture from leaving the strands. Lastly, a cream or butter is finally used to finally coat the strands to be double sure that no moisture leaves the hair at all.This is the method I use for my hair.
*LCO: This is an acronym for liquid, cream and oil. It is a moisturizing method like the LOC method. The only difference is that the cream is used before the oil in this case.
*Low manipulation styles: These are hairstyles made with your natural hair that require low manipulation, meaning that you do not have to comb or manipulate your hair for the period that you have the style in. Common low manipulation styles are two strand twists, flat twists, braids, bantu knots.
*Moisturizing: This is the process of adding water(moisture) to your hair.
*Pineappling: This is simply packing your hair up before going to sleep.
*Pre-poo: This is any hair treatment applied before shampooing the hair.
*Protective Style: This is any hair style that hides the natural hair and keeps the ends of the hair covered. Protectives styles can be used to retain the length of the hair, because there will be no combing or manipulation while the protective style is in. Examples include weaves, kinky twists, braids with extensions, crochet braids, etc.
**I made this all by myself *happy dance* 🙂
*Sealing: This is the process of locking in added moisture in the hair with a cream or oil.
*Shedding: This is when the hair comes right out of the root. A shed hair can be identified by the presence of a white bulb at the beginning of the strand. It is said that we shed between 100-150 strands of hair a day so fear not when you see the white bulb lol. 🙂
*Shrinkage: My worst enemy 😦
Enough said. Water is the enemy!!! 😦
*SLS/SLES: Sodium lauryl/laureth sulphate. These are commonly found chemicals in shampoos which are bad for the hair.
*Transitioning: To transition to natural means to hold on to the relaxed ends while yourr natural hair grows out. The relaxed part will eventually break off or have to get trimmed off.
*TWA: Teeny weeny afro. This is when your hair kinda looks like this.
Haha. Ain’t I just cute? 🙂
Okay I’m sure you get the point now.
HAIR LENGTH ACRONYMS
*APL: Arm pit length
*BSL: Bra strap length
*CBL: collar bone length
*MBL: Mid back length
*SL: Shoulder length
*WL: Waist length
*HBL: Hip bone length
*KL: Knee length
*AL: Ankle length
Did I leave any out? Let me know in the comments section.
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I love ya :*
Congratulations! You’ve gotten your big chop or you just decided to transition to natural hair. You’ve made a great decision so don’t worry, I’m here to make sure you don’t regret it.
However, there are a few tools and products you will need to care for your natural hair, and I’ve put them together in this post.
1. A wide toothed comb: This will be very useful for detangling your hair. Smaller toothed combs lead to breakage and pain during detangling :'(.
2. A spray bottle: A spray bottle will come in very handy during detangling, and on days when your hair needs a little moisture. I put water alone in my spray bottle, but some people choose to put in water with glycerin and/or some oils.
3. A moisturizer: Moisturizers have water as one of their first ingredients. This is for adding moisture to your hair without getting the hair so wet or damp. My favourite hair moisturizers are Cantu shea butter leave in conditioning repair cream and Pro-Line Comb-Thru softener. Both make the hair feel so soft, moisturized and easy to comb through. However there are so many other great moisturizers to choose from, or better still you can make your own at home.
4. Leave in conditioner: This is an essential product for moisture retention. Leave in conditioners prevent tangling and keep the hair smooth. Most leave in conditioners are moisturizers, but not all moisturizers are leave in conditioners. My favourite leave in conditioners are the Cantu shea butter leave in conditioning repair cream, and Profectiv Mega Growth daily leave in strengthener. Both of them leave my hair soft and moisturized.
5. After-wash conditioner: Hair conditioners work by coating your hair, thereby giving it a shinier look. They are also useful for detangling, moisturizing or strengthening the hair. My rinse out conditioner I use is Alberto VO5 Moisturizing Conditioner. It comes in different flavours, which are equally good and smell lovely.
6. Sulphate free shampoo: A lot of shampoos contain Sodium Lauryl Sulphate, Sodium Laureth Sulphate or Ammonium laureth sulphate. These chemicals are also found in cleaning products and toothpastes. Sulphates are added to shampoos to make it easier for them to foam. However, they also leave your hair feeling dry because they strip your hair of the oils that your body produces from your scalp. There are a lot of organic sulphate free shampoos available as alternatives, however, I prefer to use African black soap, and it gets the job done just as well. 😉
7. Oils: Oils are important for ensuring that your hair does not lose it’s moisture and get dry. Oils are to be applied on moisturized hair to seal in the moisture. There are so many great oils you can use for your hair, but I use coconut and olive oils. I love coconut oil because it’s light and seals in moisture quite well, and I love olive oil because of the shine it gives to my hair while conditioning it and soothing itching on the scalp. Other lovely hair oils include jojoba oil, almond oil, rosemary oil, argan oil, castor oil, avocado oil, tea tree oil, et al.
8. Natural hair butters: Like oils, butters seal in moisture, but they are heavier than oils. Butters are great to use in dry weather like harmattan or winter. Different butters include mango butter, cocoa butter, ucuuba butter, cupuacu butter, et al. I use the great multipurpose, miracle working shea butter. It is excellent for retaining moisture while softening the hair and making it shine. Shea butter can also be used to soothe an itchy scalp
9. Styling gel: This will be used to create those beautiful curls in your hair, or to lay edges or baby hairs. I use the Beautiful Textures Curl Definer Styling Custard for mixed textures. I love it because it has natural ingredients, and also doubles as a moisturizer.
10. Love, care, patience: This is the most important ‘tool’ you need!
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Hello! My name is Oluwalonimi. I am a year 2 medical student, and a natural hair enthusiast living in Lagos, Nigeria.
I’ve worn my kinky 4c hair in it’s chemical free, unpermed state for 3 years now. I had my first big chop (hair cut) in June 2013 without transitioning (meaning I didn’t wait for the natural part of my hair to grow out. I just cut it when it was due for a perm). My second big chop was in March 2015.
I decided to go return natural after falling in love with popular natural hair vlogger Naptural85. I watched countless Youtube videos of black women styling their beautiful natural hair and I was amazed at the beauty of natural hair, and I wanted my hair to look that way too.
However, my natural hair journey has not been smooth all the way. The purpose of this blog is to show my journey to long, healthy natural hair, helping you avoid the pitfalls I experienced. Please join me on this journey.