Before I go on answering today’s question, I’d just like to say a big thank you to all of you who read this column and leave comments as well. I really appreciate it and I feel like we’re all learning. I’m thinking of spotlighting some positive/helpful comments, so keep leaving those useful tips and it just might be yours!
Now, where were we? Haircare routine!
First of all
go down low, as you know, I do my hair at O’Naturals salon frequently. When I’m not there, I’m either rocking a protective style – carefully following Omozo’s home care instructions to help preserve the style and keep my hair healthy – or I’m rocking my afro out making sure to moisturize and seal often.
Wash & Condition
Products: Mizani Thermasmooth Shampoo and Conditioner
I shampoo my hair every 2 weeks with warm water. Then I use a rinse out conditioner and rinse it out with cold water after leaving it in for 3-5 minutes. This method of mixing hot and cold water for different uses is best for people with high porosity like myself.
You see, I’m not really into all this Trichology grammar but I’ll explain porosity just how I understand it then we can explore other terminologies together as time goes on. Your hair strands have cuticles that are pretty much the doorway to your strands, they keep moisture in when they’re closed. High porosity hair means your cuticles are constantly open, making it easy for your hair to get moisturized but this also means it dries out faster too. Low porosity is the opposite, it’s hard to get moisture in there but once it’s in, you’re good to go.
Since I have HiPo hair (naturalista lingo 101), I rinse my hair with cold water to close my cuticles. It makes my hair feel softer and silky.
Products: Mizani Thermasmooth Conditioner
I deep condition my hair every 3 weeks depending on what my hair needs at the time. It’s important to listen to your hair people! Think of it as a relationship (like I said in my last post), if you don’t get to know your hair, what it likes and what it doesn’t like, you’ll never know what it needs for it to be at it’s best.
I don’t like sitting in the dryer or steamer so I try to dodge this but my stylist (shoutout to you, Omozo) will not have it! However, when I do, I use low heat. Using low heat is unique to this product (not for every deep conditioner) or a hot oil treatment.
Products: African Naturalistas Daily Hair Mist and Oil Elixir. Dark and Lovely Au Naturale Afro Moisturizing Butter, Plaiting Pudding Cream and Anti Shrinkage Coil Moisturizing Soufflé. Design Essentials Curl Defining Creme Gel … Design Essentials Contours Panthenol Enriched Clear Protein Styling Gel
Depending on the style, I spray my hair with water every morning before leaving home. I prefer to do it in the morning and during the day because I don’t want my hair to be wet/oily before I go to bed. It transfers to my satin bonnet, then to my pillow, then it gets on my face and into my pores and… AH, just no!
Most times I spray my hair till it’s damp before leaving for the office because my hair gets dry easily #HiPoProblems. Because of this (similar to my skincare), I make sure I moisturize and seal with the African Naturalistas Daily Mist and Oil Elixir or Coconut Oil or Shea Butter right after. I just started using the Malicha Luxury Butter Soufflé on my hair as well so I’ll let you know how that goes. I also use the Dark and Lovely Au Naturale Afro Moisturizing Butter for moisture.
I’ve also just started using the African Naturalistas Anti-Dandruff Spray for my scalp because it gets a bit dry and flaky sometimes. I’ll update you on my results. When I’m doing twist outs by myself at home, I use the Dark and Lovely Au Naturale Anti Shrinkage Coil Moisturizing Soufflé and a bit of water in a spray bottle to get my hair slightly damp so it’s easily malleable when twisting.
- Having HiPo hair also means your hair’s pH level is higher than the normal 4.5-5.5, which means it’s alkaline. This alkalinity is what keeps the cuticles lifted.
- Make sure you massage your scalp often, it’s one of my favourite things to do, it stimulates blood flow/circulation in your scalp and that will also stimulate growth
- Aside from deep conditioning, I also do hot oil treatments – again, depending on what my hair needs at that time. I do this when my hair/scalp feels particularly dry, using a custom blend oil at O’Natural made according to what my hair needs.
- I don’t use a towel, NEVER use a towel. Use a cotton t-shirt to avoid damaging your curls.
- Always use a satin bonnet or scarf when going to bed at night, I never miss it. That and washing my face with Malicha Luxury Moroccan Black Soap.
- The Malicha Luxury Butter Soufflé contains Shea Butter, Mango Butter, Sweet Almond Oil, Sesame Oil and other essential oils
- Don’t wash your hair with your nails, use your finger pads (fingertips) to avoid damaging your scalp or injuring yourself.
- Moisturize and seal always 🙂
- Be patient to find products that work well for you: I’ve tried some of the very popular brands (I won’t mention) and they didn’t work for me, this doesn’t mean it won’t work for you.
- Keep it simple with your routine, if you disturb your hair, your hair will disturb you.
We’ll talk about my protective styling in another post but for more on African Fashion & Style, visit www.bellanaijastyle.com