I have been on a mission to re-gain the health back into my hair so I’ve “enhanced” my regimen to help speed up the process. I became really lazy with my hair, ended up dying it (twice!) and not taking care of it properly so I ended with LOTS of breakage, dryness and even *gasps*….hair loss!! It was pretty bad and I know the road to recovery may be long but when I saw hair falling out my head, I knew I had to make a change…. *sigh*
With that said, here’s what I currently do…
….I have since simplified my weekly regimen so I may or may not do everything listed below. Feel free to ask me any questions about what I do! :o)
Depending on my schedule, the day or a few hours before I wash, I will heavily coat my hair with an oil and allow it to sit in my hair. This helps soften my hair, makes detangling a lot easier and reduces the amount of moisture lost when washing.
Once a week (usually on Sunday or Saturday). The key to making wash days easy is to work your hair in sections, don’t try to attack all your hair guerrilla style all at once lol. Work small sections and finger detangle as you go along, that way, your hair stays as manageable as possible through the whole process. I actually really enjoy wash days, I feel like its time that I get to bond with myself :o)
- Clarification – Depending on how dirty my scalp is, I may begin the “wash day” by spraying my scalp with organic Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) from a spritzer bottle. This helps clarify my scalp and get rid of excessive build-up. It also helps restore my scalp to a normal pH level. ***UPDATE – I don’t really do this that much anymore since my scalp has been pretty consistent now and also my shampoo bars clarify my scalp enough.
- Shampoo – I wash my hair with shampoo bars, focusing on my scalp to get rid of product building, sebum (oil), dandruff, etc. I want to make sure I leave a well-circulated, healthy environment for my hair to grow! I separate my hair in about 6 sections and wash each section one at a time to avoid creating a mess of tangles
- Deep Condition or Treatment (1-2x a month) – I do a deep condition or treatment (I switch it up each time) for at least 30 mins under my Hair Therapy Warp Thermal Turban. After this, I finger detangle since the hair has softened from the deep conditioner. Treatments consist of any of the following – ayurvedic, Cherry Lola, homemade, steam, etc.
- Rinse-Out Conditioner – I almost always apply some type of rinse-out conditioner every time I get in the shower and wet my hair. I do this to soften and condition my hair to make it more manageable. I use whatever I have available in my shower, usually any of my Nature’s Gate, Aubrey Organics or Trader Joe’s conditioners. I will leave it in for the duration of my shower.
I try to detangle as much as possible whenever I am manipulating my hair, using only my fingers. So because I am constantly “detangling as I go”, it makes managing my hair much easier. On occasion, I will do a more extensive detangle session with my modified denman brush, as it helps remove all shed hair. The goal is to always keep my hair as detangled as much as possible. Since I have done this, I have seen a drastic decrease in shed hair and breakage!
I wear a twist-out or bantu knot-out 99% of the time because I have a lot of curl shrinkage and twists help elongate my hair, plus I just like the way it looks on me the most. I am not a big “protective style” gal because I 1) am not that creative lol 2) feel that I protect my hair well enough at night and seal my ends like crazy so it has worked for me. On occasion, I may do an updo, slicked back bun or some type of random free-style do.
Wash-n-go’s….I don’t really like the “wet” feeling or drying time of wash-n-go’s BUT I do wear them sometimes in the summer when the warm weather helps dry my hair faster. If I do a wash-n-go, I will most likely use a diffuser as well. I also get a lot of shrinkage with WNG’s and feel that my hair doesn’t stay as moisturized as when I wear twist-outs. Maybe I just haven’t discovered the right product for me yet…I have found that gels with a lot of hold like Eco-Styler, Curls Unleashed and Kinky Curly work best for my hair. I’ve learned that I need to apply a leave-in conditioner or a little bit of butter underneath the gel to keep my hair moisturized and soft.
Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize!
I make sure I put moisture (WATER) in my hair at least 2x a week. My hair is low porosity so I don’t need to moisturize every day since it takes my hair longer to absorb products. When I twist up my hair, I use my one of my spritzer mixers or a moisturizing spray like THIS or THIS. When I un-twist my twists, I coat my hands with coconut or Vatika oil to provide some lubrication in the process of un-twisting to keep my hair from frizzing and to distribute the oil through the length of my hair.
Seal your ends! ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS seal your ends! You have no idea how essential this is in retaining length. I like to use a thick pomade or shea based butter to do this. You’ll know your ends are sealed when the curls “clump” together on the ends.
Night Time Routine
Depending on how motivated I am feeling lol I will re-twist my hair at night (usually 2x a week). This is when I moisturize and apply a growth treatment (I will go into detail about those in a sec). When I re-twist, I do not apply more product, just the moisture. If my hair is feeling a bit dry, I may apply a teeny bit more product OR coconut oil to seal in the moisture. I don’t like a lot of build-up so that is why I do not reapply each time.
I sleep with satin/silky scarf, loosely tied at the nape of my neck and let the back of my hair hang out (the scarf is long enough to cover it all). I do this when my hair is in twists and also when I’m feeling lazy and don’t re-twist. In 2012, I stopped wearing my bonnet that has the elastic exposed around the edge because it was rubbing my edges and stunting the growth (check out THIS POST to see what I am talking about). I recently discovered Ebonnets by Eboni Curls so I may try one of those soon since my hair is getting longer :o)
Scalp & Growth Treatments
A few years back I suffered a great amount of hair loss due to stress which led to not taking proper care of my hair and body. So to aid in growing my hair back, I’ve been doing a few things that have been amazing and have truly worked!:
- Ayuverdic Powder Treatments — These are God sends! I try to do these treatments at least twice a month. Almost all ayurvedic powders aid with scalp issues, strengthen the roots of your hair (reduce shed) and aide with hair loss. These are overall AMAZING for my scalp. I don’t think I will ever stop doing these treatments. I have used amla, brahmi, neem, tusli, shikakai, henna and cassia.
- Bee Mine Hair Growth Serums — AMAZING!!!! I recommend this to everyone!!
- Essential Oil Mixture — I don’t do this as much since I have introduced the Bee Mine Serums but when I do, it’s in the winter when the weather is dry, otherwise my scalp gets too oily. I massage any combination of castor, almond and/or grapeseed oil (carrier oils) with a few drops of rosemary, lavender, peppermint, tea tree, cedarwood and myrtle oils (essential oils). These oils are all known to remedy alopecia and other scalp ailments. I do this 2-3x a week and make sure I wash my hair at least once a week to avoid oil build-up
- Aloe Vera Gel — I love this one during the summer since I keep my Aloe vera in the fridge and it’s cold :o) I apply AV gel to my scalp (mostly on my crown area). This is a natural astringent which helps clarify and pH balance my scalp. It is known to remedy hair loss.
I no longer attempt to trim my hair on my own, reason being…I am not a trained stylist! lol Whenever I would trim my hair myself and then straighten it, my hair was sooooo uneven! I am going to leave this to the pros :o). I try to get my hair blown out and trimmed at least once a year. Since I seal my ends so much, I really do not need trims as often as I had to in the past :o)
In the past I have taken biotin. I have tried a few other natural supplements to aid in the overall health and growth of my hair. I’ve tried Viviscal and am currently taking sea kelp and a Vitacost.com brand Hair Skin and Nails vitamin.