Hair Care 101

Hair Care can be a complex and intimidating process even for those who have identified products and routines that work for them. The most important aspect of hair care and maintaining healthy hair is to breakdown the process, simplify it and understand the importance of each step.

An optimal hair care routine includes but is not limited to cleansing, conditioning, sealing in moisture, protecting and styling. The frequency and care taken in each of these steps can determine if and when you will achieve your hair goals! The good news is, hair care doesn’t have to be scary, the idea is to have fun and experiment with different products and routines until you finds what works best for you and your hair.

 

1. Cleanse

Cleansing allows you to get rid of product build up. Whether you choose to do a shampoo or non-shampoo (co-wash) cleanse, begin your routine with a prepoo using aloe vera, coconut oil or a natural pre-poo for at least 20 minutes. Remember to use a shampoo that is sulphate and silicon free.

What we have found works is doing a co-wash if we are cleansing the hair on a weekly basis and a shampoo cleanse once a month. This helps as the hair isn’t stripped of the natural oils produced that are necessary for hair health and growth.

To minimise product build up in between co-washes and shampoo cleanses, you can use organic, raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar and water rinse to clarify- a spritz bottle can help you do this.

Work products in using your fingers or a head massager to boost blood circulation to the scalp. You can add carrier and essential oils to enrich your shampoo and cleansing products depending on your hair type and needs.

Products to Buy Now :

Mosara- Sulphate-free shampoo @650ksh

Bu.Ke- Shampoo Bar @400ksh-480ksh

Harvest of Sunshine- Na’azi @800ksh

Sheth Naturals- Apple Cider Vinegar @880ksh

Sheth Naturals- Moisturising Shampoo Bar @410ksh

 

2. Condition

After a good cleanse, the hair can be stripped of oils that keep the cuticle flat and smooth. Hair then tangles when the frayed cuticles of one hair gets caught on the cuticle layer of another hair. A conditioner works by smoothing out these cuticles, replenishing oils, adding moisture and regulating the pH of the hair. Conditioners contain oils which coat the hair shaft, improving the appearance and texture of your hair. For best results, choose a conditioner with ingredients and formulation that meets the needs of your specific hair type.

The benefits of hair conditioners include:

  • Softens hair: It makes hair feel smooth and soft and helps with detangling knots. It also adds more shine and luster to the hair.
  • Moisture retention: It protects hair from dryness especially during subsequent steps of styling.
  • Protects against towel and drying damage: It boosts the tenacity of hair, and reduces the vulnerability curve of hair during drying.
  • Improves hair elasticity and strength: Prevents breakage especially for weak or colored hair.
  • Treating: Specific conditioners are created for chemically treated, relaxed and damaged hair to aid the rejuvenation and hair growth process.

Deep conditioners are usually thicker and more viscous than regular conditioners. For this reason, they are highly penetrative and have longer lasting effects. They are left on the hair for 20-30 minutes during which heat can be applied to boost the absorption rate of moisture into the hair. Moisturising deep conditioners can be used in combination with protein treatments for extensive repair and hair chemical balance.

Products to Buy Now :

Sheth Naturals- Moisturising Deep Conditioner @950ksh-1690ksh

Mosara- Rich Conditioner @500ksh

Mosara- Deep Treatment Masque @350ksh-600ksh

Harvest of Sunshine- M’Cado @1,500ksh

Wild Earth Botanics- LUX Hair Treatment @850ksh

 

3. Seal/Loc

In order to maximize moisture retention after a conditioning, the process of sealing and locing incorporates a sequenced layering of products. The best-known sealants are oils and butters. These components work by creating a barrier along the hair shaft that prevents the loss of water through evaporation.

Step 1: Add moisture to hair with a liquid such as a leave-in-conditioner, water or a water-based curl enhancer.

Step 2: Apply a thin layer of oil to loc in the moisture. The oil chosen should be selected depending on hair porosity.

Step 3: Apply a butter-based cream to completely seal in the moisture. This step enhances curl definition and the hold of style.

These steps are more effective for high porosity hair that tends to be dry. The amounts, choice of product and frequency of application all depend on the curl patterns and porosity.

Products to Buy Now :

Mugzie’s Naturals- Hair Butter (Protein-Free)

Afrolicious- Jojoba Oil @980ksh

Afrolicious- Peppermint Tingle Elixir @800ksh

Harvest of Sunshine- Buyu Daily Leave-in @800ksh

Harvest of Sunshine- Mwele @1,200ksh

Harvest of Sunshine- Buyu Loc & Style @1,000ksh

Mosara- Hydrating Butter @400ksh-700ksh

Sheth Naturals- Black Castor Oil @1,055ksh

Sheth Naturals- Avocado Oil @360ksh

Cocopure- Organic, Cold-Pressed Virgin Coconut Oil @650ksh

Cocopure- Baobab Oil @500ksh

Ella’s Tree- Shea Nut Oil @850ksh

Wild Earth Botanics- LUX Hair Treatment @850ksh

 

4. Protect and Style

The structure and composition of Afro-hair means that it needs to be protected from weather elements, loss of moisture and breakage. Whether your hair is long or short, relaxed or natural, there are endless ways to protect and style hair. Protective styling is therefore any form or method that tucks away your ends. Some popular protective styles include braiding, faux locs, weaves, wigs and crotchet styles.

If you chose to style and wear your natural hair as it is, there are also many options including braid outs, twist outs, bantu knots, flexi or perm rod sets to name a few, which results in fabulous curls with definition and body. Braided crowns and buns allow you to wear out your natural hair with your ends still protected but remember to care for your hairline by not pulling your hair back too tightly, too often and applying an oil or butter everyday to promote growth and health along your edges.

However, even when your hair is in a protective style, always remember to cleanse your scalp and roots, and keep your hair moisturized with water and oils. Don’t forget to protect your hair as you sleep using a satin or silk bonnet to minimise tangling, friction and drying out your hair.

Products to Buy Now :

Afrolicious- Peppermint Tingle Elixir @800ksh

Sheth Naturals- Black Castor Oil @1,055ksh

 

So keep calm, have fun, be bold, do your research, nourish your body, listen to your hair and enjoy your hair journey!

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