In this series of posts we touch on the basic knowledge you need to successfully take care of your natural hair. There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to looking after your hair, we are all unique right down to the kinks and coils on our heads. But there are some general pieces of advice that we can all benefit from and that’s what we’ll be sharing with you.
It goes without saying that having a clean scalp and clean hair is integral to ensuring you maintain healthy strands. Like the rest of our skin our scalp also needs to be cleaned often and freed from any build up caused by products and sweat. Excessive build up can lead to reduced hair growth, dandruff and in severe cases infections.
When we were relaxed maintaining a clean scalp wasn’t always a priority because, well let’s face it, our hair reverting wasn’t an option! But now we know better and washing our hair has become a weekly or fortnightly routine. Depending on the approach you take this could be a laborious task or relatively simple and straight forward.
So let’s talk about the different options we have for taking our hair from dirty to ‘fresh and so clean, clean’
Shampoo – You could say this is the tried and tested approach to cleaning your hair. Shampoos are great at stripping all that excess product from your strands and scalp and leaving you with that squeaky clean feeling some of us love! But this pro can also be a con, as the sulfates in the shampoo not only clean your hair but can also strip it of the necessary moisture. For a more gentle option, you could try a sulfate free shampoo or a shampoo bar.
If the drying properties of shampoo is not your thing, you could skip them all together and go down the co-wash route. ‘Co-wash’ is the shorthand for conditioner washing, and as the name suggests you use any conditioner of your choice in place of shampoo. Although this doesn’t give your hair as thorough of a clean it will still get rid of any product build up and unlike shampoo, leave your hair feeling moisturised.
Another route you could decide to take is using a clay. Using clay on hair and skin has been around for centuries and history has shown that in many cultures across the world clay is used for its deep cleansing properties. Similar to a hair mask the clay is put on the hair and left for a short period of time and then rinsed out. This option is perfect for all the DIY naturals out there. We recommend using rhassoul, bentonite or kaolin clay and mixing it with your favourite oil and some honey for a great all in one cleanser and conditioner.
Tired of products all together? Then you could attempt the No-Poo method. No shampoo, no conditioner…nada! Taking this approach is more of a lifestyle change and will affect all aspects of your haircare. As you will be using no aides to help get rid of build up the aim of this regimen is to avoid it at all cost by reducing the amount of products you use when styling. This way you decrease the need to use shampoo or any similar product.
Which method do you like to use to clean your hair? Tell us about it in the comments!