I have noticed in the past few years a few of my friends are starting to show off their hair, being proud of it, snapchatting, gramming it, and bringing it out for the world to see. I myself have been in this ‘game’ for a while (~ 5 years), learning the ups and downs, dealing with those mornings that my hair didn’t want to do what I wanted it to do. Here are a few tricks I learnt along the way.
1. Coconut oil = Life
For about 6 months or so I switched out my regimen for coconut oil. I used it for my hair for styling, during blow drying, if it looked dead, if it needed softening, if the oil was just there and I was bored and so forth.
Honestly speaking, I used coconut oil for my whole body, my hair went from that’s ‘cute’ to ‘omg, what do you use on your hair?’ It had that shine, it was easier to handle and it lifted my hair spirits a bit. So for now, I stand with coconut oil, and so should you!
An expert opinion from the Hair Affairs says that coconut oil would work better with a few people when mixed. This is because coconut oil is very thin on hair which could make hair go dry easily.
And also due to the high protein content contained in coconut oil, hair might take time to absorb water and more time to release water after being wet hence advised to be mixed with other oils such as castor oils to correct low porosity issues ( less pores on hair cuticles)
2. Combing and Detangling
First, do not use a comb to detangle, and if you for any reason you need to comb your hair, do not start from the roots, unless you want all of it to come out. To detangle, the easiest way I have found is to do it in the shower, running your fingers through sectioned hair and taking time to un knot every strand.
I would then do my ‘mabutu’ in the shower as well as I condition it, and my hair would look Godsent!
3. Cut off those split ends, they are not real Growth!
This was a real problem for me at first, I would see the supposed growth in my hair and think, ‘do I really have to cut this off?’ The answer is always yes! If that hair don’t look as healthy as the rest, you need to cut it. I mean, this is only if you want actual real healthy growth in your hair.
4. Heat is a no, no
Having my hair for about 5 years, I have experimented on it a lot, ding it, using different products, and so forth. The best experimentation was not blow drying my hair for a whole semester. The growth I had was immensely satisfying, my curls were ridiculously beautiful and my hair felt healthy.
I didn’t use any sort of heat, straighteners included, for such a long time and I couldn’t believe how my hair responded. But then again, I am only human, and I barely have enough time to take care of my hair, so I retracted to my old habits.
The only time you should be blow drying and straightening your hair is really when you want to observe your growth and cut those split ends!
5. Wash regularly! (and condition!)
It needs the water I am going to go ahead and say that I thought washing my hair would damage it. I also know that as a Tanzanian, we are not really accustomed to wash our hair regularly, which I think is detrimental to our hair.
Hair needs moisture and moisture comes from washing it, conditioning it and using water during styling! I try my best to wash this head of hair at least once every week, and
I love wash days because that means I get to spend my whole day in the shower and not worry about my adult responsibilities.
An expert opinion from the Hair Affairs also pits in that hair is supposed to be moisturised daily by spraying some water in the hair roots everyday using a spray bottle. Its easily done at night, thereafter you sleep with a satin cap to retain the moisture since hair grows with water as plants do.
6. Know your hair !
All these I have learnt from taking notice of how my hair reacts to certain products or conditions I put it through. Know your hair Argan oil maybe better than coconut oil for your hair, (which I doubt), do not buy a product just because everyone else has it.
I am a 4C, so when I go on YouTube, I make sure the person I am watching videos of has hair that looks like mine. This has honestly saved me a lot of grief. I am still learning as well; my point is:
Know. Your. Hair. Now go out there and be the Goddess you deserve to be!
(And leave comments on what tricks you’ve found out about Natural hair below!!)