Natural hair 101: Beginners ! What To Do
This post is aimed at advicing new naturals on what to do in terms of routine, products and hair care. As a newbie natural it is easy to get bombarded with lots of ideas and not know where to start. Reading other naturals' journeys on YouTube or on blogs can prove to be be a rather confusing thing and lead to frustration instead of progress. So if you don't know what equipment you need, or what to do, this blog post is just for you.
Natural hair has certain characteristics that make it work better with certain products over others. So it will be important for you to familiarise yourself with the types of ingredients you should stay away from.
1. Shampoos: I'd advice you to get a sulfate free shampoo. Sulfates are cleaning agents that are added to the shampoo. Unfortunately sulfates are too strong and over clean natural hair thus stripping it of moisture and making it dry and brittle. Dry, brittle hair easily breaks! For more info on which shampoo to use and why read this post.
2. Conditioner: you will need both leave in conditioners and deep conditioning ones. Leave in conditioners are good agents of moisture and you will notice as your healthy hair journey goes, kinky curly hair loves moisture. For deep conditioning, look for products that have shea butter, aqua, glycerine and natural oils. Stay away from conditioners with parabens or mineral oils as these simply coat the hair shaft and give the illusion of shiny moisturised hair; when they are infact just coating the hair shaft and not penetrating it to provide actual moisture. They also clog your scalp pores and prevent your hair from 'breathing'.
3. Oils and Shea butter: these will be essential for locking in moisture and sealing it. You may be aware of the LOC, or LCO method of locking and sealing moisture.
1. Spritz bottle: you will realise with time that natural hair loves moisture, and spritz bottles are the best way to add moisture to your hair on a daily basis. Your concoction here could include 2 thirds distiller water and 1 third virgin olive oil and pure glycerine.
2. Wide tooth comb: as they don't get stuck between our coils and do not cause excessive breakage like the small tooth comb does.
3. Bobby pins: your styling will get easier if you make bobby pins your friend
4. Tooth brush: I prefer the one with soft bristles. This brush is great for your edges, to smooth them away.
5.Satin pillow or scarf: cotton sucks moisture in your hair so the best way for your bedtime routine is to use satin based material. I only started using a satin pillow and scarf 2 years into my healthy hair journey, once I saw the results I regretted not jumping in from the onset.
6. Old cotton T-shirts: replace traditional towels with old t-shirts. Towels cause too much friction and break our sensitive tresses.
You will have to build a hair regimen/routine. A regimen is simply your routine that you can't go without, for example, every morning you take a shower and brush your teeth right? That's a grooming regimen and you need one for your hair. Go to this link for a guide on building a regime.
Love - AfroMoriri