Sunday, July 8, 2007
Nappy Hair Care...
African hair, even though beautiful when natural, has to go through different routines to keep it well maintained. African hair is actually the most driest hair, out of all hair types. And don't be fooled by its amazing thickness, African hair follicles are also the thinnest.
Most don't realize that when we relax our hair, it actually weakens are hair even more. Relaxing the hair also reduces the scalp from naturally producing its own natural oils. Eventually (at some point) we end up with split ends, due to continuous use of chemicals. Which leads us to grab more chemicals and products to fix the problems that we already created... After fixing the "split end" damages, we continue the cycle all over again.
Hot irons and curling at the end of the hair, also leads to breakage. To add to this, kinky hair is also very prone to quickly be tangled. Pulling these tangles out, ALSO leaves to breakage...
So the question... How do we maintain African Hair?
1. Firstly, ignore anyone who claims that you should wash your hair two or three times a week! Our hair is already dry, and only needs (at least) to be washed once a week.
2. Next, after washing your hair. Begin to comb your hair when it is wet (Gently! Remember, our hair is weak) to get the tangles out. Do this (with a wide tooth comb) when you have your deep hair conditioner. Comb your hair for a few minutes, letting the conditioner get to all parts of the hair, before rinsing out the conditioner.
3. Pat your hair dry, until almost dry (still damp. So that you can lock in more moisture), with a towel. Then oil your hair (Not the scalp! You don't want to clog up your pores on your scalp). When oiling the hair, place the oil (preferably Shea Butter) at the bottom of the hair strands. Then, using a wide toothed comb, comb your hair gently. Spreading the oil along the hair strands.
4. Section it and plait it before going to bed. This will reduced tangles when you wake up in the morning. It also helps to keep your hair moisturized.
5. Wrap it up in a silk or satin head scar. And sleep with your head wrapped.
6. When you wake up the next morning to style your head, a good tip would be massaging your scalp with your finger tips. This will help to activate your oil glands. Your body's own oil supply is always better than anything you can purchase in the store.
7. Don't be too dependent with using oil moisturizers. They clog up your pores, and the contain chemicals (like fragrances) that tend to dry out your head. Oil moisturizers are a good quick fix, if you forgot to oil or tie up your hair the night before. But don't rely on them. A good leave-in conditioner is better to have.
8. Another good tip is using a rosemary rinse (mentioned in my previous article... "What do you know about your Rosemary") every other week, can help prevent you developing dandruff.
9. Try to avoid petroleum base or Vaseline base hair food products. They actually block your pores... which is something you don't want.
10. If you exercise regularly, make sure to rinse the salt out of your hair (collected from sweating), and put in a deep conditioner.