Thursday, October 6, 2011

Tips n' Techniques: How to keep moisture in natural hair


My biggest problem has always been keeping my hair from feeling dry (which leads to breakage, tangles, and knots). When I have a hair problems, I head to YouTube. If you are like me, you've watched 100's of haircare videos on YouTube. Some girls have techniques that are easy to replicate, while other techniques leave you confused.When it came to moisturizing natural hair, all the girls have a different trick. Below, I'll tell you what REALLY works for my hair and why it can work for you.



 
Above is a picture of a single strand knot on the hair shaft. That right there is my nemesis! My type 4 hair is extra curly and prone to single-strand knots. Cutting your hair (at the point of the knot) is the only way to remove those little buggers. At one point I had to cut a whole inch of hair because I had so many knots. This is not the way to retain length, and length is one of my hair goals.


Basically, dry hair needs moisture. The best moisture for hair, skin, and nails is WATER! Since hair is so porous, water tends to escape quickly over time. In order to protect strands from the evaporation, you must seal the hair shaft with a natural oil based product such as Coconut oil, olive oil, and avocado oil (source). These oils have been scientifically shown to penetrate the hair shaft and help hair retain water and won't leave your hair feeling greasy. Mineral oil and petroleum are not the best, and tend to cause more dryness overtime.


CLICK HERE FOR A GREAT ARTICLE ON HAIR OILS

Still a bit confused on the whole, 'oil vs. water' concept,  I came across a  video produced by BlackOnyxx77 who talked about sealing in the moisure with a simple technique. I tried it, and it worked. The steps listed below will allow your hair to retain more moisture than you've ever imagined. IN addition, if you deal with knots, tangles, and breakage this technique will lesson these symptoms over time:

  1. Wash your hair with your choice of moisturizing shampoo. My choice: nuNaat Karite Special Nourishing Shampoo
  2. Condition hair with your choice of moisturizing conditioner. Take this time to rinse and detangle your hair. My choice: Herbal Essences Hello Hydration Conditioner
  3. Towel dry hair.
  4. Spray hair with you choice of leave-in conditioner. Your conditioner should be very liquid, almost close to water. This is the beginning of your sealing technique. My choice: Motions Nourish Leave-in.
  5. Apply oil to the hair with one of the natural oils listed above. Make sure to distribute all over the head concentrating on the ends of your hair. My choice: Pure Coconut Oil
  6. Lastly, cover your hair with a creamy moisturizer. This will add the final layer to the seal. My choice: Creme of Nature Lemongrass and Rosemary Leave-in Conditioner.
I know this seems like a lot, but believe me, your hair will feel so much better, softer, and have more natural curls definition after you use this technique.
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