When it comes to natural hair care, moisture is at the top of the list. It’s vital to keep the strands moisturized. Knowing this information, in many situations naturals fall short at locking in that moisture.
Below are a few tips to help you effectively moisturize your natural hair. From experience, I’ve fallen short many times. Learn from my mistakes.
1. Oils are NOT moisturizers
When I began my journey I of course turned to the gurus on YouTube and I constantly heard many mention that certain oils are moisturizers. For a while I just took this and ran. About a year later I finally realized that oils are sealants. They aid in the aspect of locking in moisture. A few oils, like coconut oil, can penetrate the hair strands YES; I won’t however refer to this penetration as moisturizing. It’s simply nourishing the hair with different nutrients. Water is the main source of moisture. In a nutshell, oils and butters will sit on the surface of your strand because they are SEALANTS, not moisturizers. Their purpose is to trap moisture or repel it depending on what your end game is (either keep hair moisturized during harsh winter days or repel the moisture during humid summer days). Simply applying oil to dry hair makes it brittle and at times dry. What follows is breakage.
2. Product Build-up
Many naturals stretch their wash days apart because let’s face it, washing our hair can be time consuming especially on deep conditioning days. This causes the problem of product build-up. A layer of dirt on the surface of the strand will inhibit the water from penetrating it. The point of moisturizing is applying products that are water based so that they penetrate the cuticle of the strand and infuse the cortex with moisture / water. This is why it is important to clarify one’s hair and scalp regularly. For those who shampoo, fine but a tip for those who solely co-wash, make sure you are using a clarifying conditioner and try to encorporate Apple Cider Vinergar (ACV) rinses.
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With the way hair and skincare are always a topic of discussion, I’m sure finding a person who hasn’t heard of or tried Shea butter is quite rare. I’m particularly proud of this picture I used because this is the first DIY whipped Shea Butter I have ever created. I mixed in olive oil and coconut oil. I liked it, but loved the experience of creating my own products. There’s something about creating, producing and preparing things for my own use.
When one searches for Shea butter two types usually pop up; the Ivory/White Shea which is what i always order (not to be mistaken for the bleach white refined Shea butter)and is pictured in this post, and the Yellow Shea Butter. There is unrefined and refined and also Grades A-D. The difference between these is the way they are extracted and processed. It’s always best to go for unrefined products in my opinion because they are not altered by chemicals. They are in their most natural form. The unrefined butter maintains it nutty, earth scent and nutrients. Commercial grades remove this scent and the end result is a bleach white butter that is odorless and retains little to no nutrients.
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