Tuesday, 18 February 2014

My Weekly Hair Care Routine

Not professing to be Rapunzel, or to have hair like a Remy Human Hair Wig, but just telling you lovelies what I do to my hair on a weekly basis to cut frizz and style my hair.
Products Used:
  • Shampoo: 
    • Luster’s Pink Moisturizing Shampoo - not sulfate free, but I only use this rarely and it does make my hair SUPER soft – smells like bubblegum. 
    • Tresemme Keratin Infused Shampoo - also not sulfate free but doesn't noticeably dry out my hair.
  • Conditioner: Nothing But Cleansing Conditioner - sulfate free & pretty cheap, and does the job although it doesn’t lather I find sometimes if I have a ton of build up it doesn’t get rid of it  quite as effectively as I want.
  • Styling Product: DAX Wave and Groom Hair Dress – this was my boyfriends, and it smelled yummy so I stole it. Like this for up-dos (use on days close to when you’re going wash your hair – pretty thick)
  • Leave In Conditioner: African Pride Shea Butter Miracle Leave In: This makes my hair SO soft. Bought this in December and it’s so huge it’s still going. Cheap too and practically all natural.
Day 1:
First off, I finger detangle & brush my hair through with a paddle brush to remove tangles.On ‘wash day’ I may wash my hair with either of the shampoos above, and get out the shower and put in my leave in conditioner.
If not, I (as I’ve been doing more recently) use a baking soda and vinegar rinse.After I’m finished washing/rinsing my hair, I get out and quickly just make sure my parting is in place etc. as I don’t really need to comb again. Then I squeeze out the excess water from my hair and dry a little with a t-shirt.
I apply a little (emphasis on little) drop of olive oil and rub it between my hands and apply to the ends of my hair. I flip my head over, scrunch my hair and shake the excess water out of my hair. I find that this gives my curls shine and volume. At this stage my hair is a little damp and it’s ESSENTIAL not to touch it unless applying styling products in order to avoid frizz.
Usually at night I would just pull my back in to a pony-tail or a braid and sleep like that..

Day 2: 
I take my hair down, and just lightly spritz water on any frizzy parts, flip , shake and go out the door.
At night, I dampen my hair in the shower, brush through it and apply a VERY small amount of coconut oil through out it concentrating on the ends. After this, depending on how much volume I want I either put my hair in a pineapple, or braid in a simple plait.
I repeat this process for the next 2-3 days usually, and I may do varying  minimal manipulation styles such as wearing headbands, or twisting/braiding my bangs out of the way.

Day 6: 
Usually I like to have my hair in a bun on Thursdays/Fridays. When I do a ‘sock/donut’ bun I use my bristle brush to smooth down the hairs and apply DAX hair dress to smooth down my hairs. This product leaves my hair shiny and smooth, and if any fly- aways occur I can simply smooth them back into place.
I find that this product kind of stays in your hair, so the next day I usually do an up-do too, such as a halo twisted up-do, a bun etc.
When I come home I find that I like to do a 2-strand twist out on damp hair with my leave in conditioner, and coconut oil as a sealant. I usually sleep in a satin headscarf this night to allow my hair to stay moisturized.
On Saturday mornings, I take down my twists ( I don’t care about frizz), and do a hot oil/egg deep conditioning mask. I have a video showing this process here. I let the mixture sit in my head for around an hour whilst I potter about the house or sit on the internet, and then I wash it out.

This routine works out okay for my hair type when I’m not working out. If I work out, I wash my hair 2x weekly at least, sometimes co-washing in between. I just don’t want my hair to smell sweaty, but it’s possible to go longer in between washes even whilst working out if that is your preference.
Also, if I find I have product build-up e.g. from doing an up-do earlier in the week, I may co-wash  around Wednesday       (co wash = wash with conditioner).

What my hair looks like after air drying with no product in it.

Saturday, 1 February 2014

How To Go Longer Without Washing Your Hair

Part of getting healthier hair, is to wash it less. Here are my top 6 tips on how to go longer between washes.

+Dry Shampoo Can Be Your Best Friend!
A dry shampoo is a good thing to have handy. Dry shampoos get rid of those greasy roots, without you having to wash your hair. If you work out a lot these are helpful and are also handy if you're travelling.
- A good dry shampoo for thinner hair is : Oscar Blandi Volumizing Dry Shampoo.
- The most cost effective brand of  shampoo for all hair types is : Batiste

Baby Powder and Cocoa have also been used successfully as substitutes for dry shampoo

//Satin Should Be in Your Wardrobe!
LOL not like that, but you should invest in a satin bonnet, head tie or pillowcase. Silk scarves work well too when wrapping the hair but can come off easily during sleep.
This technique is often used by women of color, but can also work for all different ethnicities, either to provide volume for curly hair or to prolong straightened hair.

Straight: Smooth your hair around your head, pinning with bobby pins to keep it flat, and continue on. You may use a mesh head band to keep it secure and then put on your silk bonnet, scarf or whatever you choose. This helps prevent that annoying line in your hair where the hair tie was.

Curly: Tie your hair in a pineapple (ponytail close to the top of your head) and use your bonnet, scarf  or head-tie, or go to sleep on your satin pillowcase. This will help prolong your curls by keeping them moisturized and preventing frizz and will also give you more volume.

+Up-dos are a girl's best friend
Doing an up-do is the PERFECT way to go another day without washing your hair, and I say the bigger the better... "That's why her hair's so big.. it's full of secrets". Well. The secret is, updos such as messy buns, and all sorts of twists and braids look so much better on dirty hair!
I know I KILL a sock bun at least once a week.
If you live in a climate where you can get away with wearing hats/beanies etc... Do that! Trust me, not only are they stylish, they keep you warm and can hide all your hair hang-ups.

//DITCH All Those Products!
One of the main reasons people need to wash their hair so much is - PRODUCT BUILDUP!
The necessary products you need are the ones that give moisture to your hair, like your conditioner etc, not hairspray, gel and all that crap, especially not on 'first day hair' unless you have some seriously special plans.
Limit the amount of product you use, e.g. you can only use hairspray twice a week etc.. and you'll find that your hair gets way less dirty in the same amount of time. Stick to using it only when you're doing an up-do or you're going out somewhere that you really need to look good for!

+Conditioner to the Rescue!
Co-washing can allow you to go more time in-between washes. Co - washing is quite simply the act of washing your hair with conditioner instead of shampoo. A lot of kinky/curly/coily haired girls use co washing to allow them to go up to 2-4 weeks between washing. It's the action of massaging your scalp and the water running over your hair that cleans it.

The most important thing is to take baby steps. If you wash daily, do NOT jump into washing your hair only once a  week. Your hair will look disgusting and you'll get disheartened. My advice is, increase what you're doing by 1 day. So wash every other day, and keep going on until you get to a routine you're happy with.

How Long SHOULD I go between washes?
Depending on your hair type it varies, but I'd say:

1. Thin, light grease prone hair - every 2-3 days
2. Thinner curly/wavy hair like mine - 1 or 2 times per week.
3. Extremely thick kinky/curly or coily hair - can last for up to 2-4 weeks.

This is simply a guide, but wash your hair as often as YOU prefer. Train your hair to your wash routine!

Do I need to wash.. Is there no alternative to shampoo?
You can use products like clarifying and cleansing cremes;  you can even use natural products to clarify the hair, just make sure you do your research!

Let me know how your hair growth journey is going!