You go walking in your nearest target, straight to what they call the ethnic section then see countless products. Now, there’s some you recognize from your relaxed days then there are a ton more that you want to get your hands on but don’t know where to start.
How many times has this happened to you?
I mean yea you knew what you use to use back in your relaxed hair days but that’s different now you’re dealing with your natural hair now right?
When I first was starting to find the right product it was overwhelming seeing so many products and not knowing where to start. I got so many products that were a waste of time because I went by pretty packaging or what I heard someone would use that didn’t have my hair type versus what it could do for my hair. This crazy method of mine lead to a
- Waste of products
- Waste of time
- Waste of money
Think about it
How much money could be saved by already knowing what products would work for your hair.
I know I’m a pure product junkie at heart and that’s because I love to try new things when it comes to my hair. However, when I started doing this method and really paying attention on what I wanted for my hair.
What to Know Before Hand
In this post you will not hear me talk about co-washing. After our events we have done over the past two years, speaking with natural hair stylist most of them do not believe in co-washing. Quite frankly, they ruined it for me, basically described it as just putting lotion on your body when it’s already dirty. Co-washing does nothing for your hair but put extra product in it. It’s necessary to have a shampoo to clear the old product that you previously used.
Side note: Now don’t get me wrong if your cowashing in the middle of the week to add softness or tighten up that wash n go then by all means go ahead. I’m referring to you if you only cowash your hair and despise using shampoo.
Also, know if you have a regimen that works for you please continue to stick with it. However, if you are having issues with dryness or breakage or any issue where your not pleased it might be time to change something in your regimen or do a different technique that would give you your desired results.
So, let’s get into it
Prior to going into the store there’s a couple things you need to know about your hair:
3 Questions to Ask yourself
1) What’s my hair type?
If you want to go by the Hair type 3a-4c system by all means please do but I’m talking about taking a look at your hair to know the density. Density as in the width of your hair is it fine, medium, or coarse.
This is good to know because fine hair will get easily weighed down by heavy butters or creams. Where as medium to coarse can not just use a leave in to get the results that you want. Once you know the density then it comes to the porosity. I know Everytime I hear that porosity word I’m thinking what the hell is that?
The bottom line is Porosity is about knowing how your hair sucks up moisture which can help you determine how you should do your hair.
What’s My Hair Porosity?
Let’s do a visual picture to get a better understanding. Say, if you go under the shower let the water run in your hair but it takes a while for the water to take it in you might be working with low porosity. Let’s go to the other spectrum, Say your under the shower, letting that water hit your beautiful hair and then it immediately sucks in water but as soon as you get out, within minutes it becomes really dry afterwards that is what you call high porosity hair. Then we can call medium porosity neutral because your hair easily absorbs and can quickly keep the moisture in.
In low porosity hair yes it might take a minute for your product to be sucked in but once it’s in thats it your good to go.
As for high porosity, naturals tend to get high porosity hair due to some type of damage whether it’s from color, too much heat or messing with your hair way too much. Protein treatments are going to be your best friend to gain the strength back in your hair.
Lastly check your hair health to determine whether you have any damage to your hair which is also going to alter your products. If you have color or any chemical your texture tends to change so be mindful with your hairs health.
2) What are my Hair Needs?
It’s time to start taking a look at your hair right now. Yes, right now as your reading this post and find out what your hair needs.
Is it looking frizzy where it has no definition when you were trying to go for a look with definition (twist out, braid out)
Is it dry? Does your hair break off easily? Have split ends
Is your scalp sensitive? Flaking?
Take a real good examine of your hair to know what it needs to move on to knowing your hair Density (fine, medium, coarse), porosity and health
3) What Styles will I be using these products for?
Have the end goal in mine. At first, let me make it clear what might work in your neighbor, your friend or a Youtuber doesn’t mean that it will work in yours. Just because your fav Youtuber uses her wash n go with a certain gel doesn’t mean that it will work good in your twist out. You might be asking what do you mean by this question though and I’ll explain. When you know your ultimate style goal then it makes it a lot easier to narrow down on what products will not work for your hair. For example, if I know I want a twist out I’m going to use styling products that will help my twist out become more defined such as a medium to firm hold custard or creme versus shea butter or a light leave in. When I think about what am I going to be using these products for I automatically think of styling products or the style i will be doing to make it a lot easier.
Picking the right product
Regardless, you want to make sure that your products have water in it for two reasons. one reason because you know it will give you some moisture and two so it can be easily removed from your hair. You also want to look for products that are plant based such as ingreidents with marshmallow root, aloe, nettle and horsetail.
I know what I’m about to say will sound off to you if your use to hearing the same tips. I want you to pay attention to the first 5 ingridents to but stay away from products that has castor oil, coconut oil or shea butter in the raw form without using it with
water. There was been a trend of women who have dry hair using these products because they place it in their hair so heavily. One of the main reasons is because these heavy oils and products are not water soluble. it takes a strong shampoo to be able to get rid of the heavy product build up which begins this cycle of dry hair consistently. I know when your hair gives off a nice glow it can seem moisturized but where people make the mistake is the fact of not understanding that water only last in your hair between 4- 7 days so when that evaporates then you start putting a coconut oil or shea butter in your that’s making your hair more dry. When you begin to shampoo, unless you clarify each time your repeating the cycle when using these products in the raw form because most sulfate free shampoos is not strong enough to remove that build up.
Keep your shampoo sulfate free to keep the moisture in your hair. Usually we recommend shampooing your hair once per week but once you start paying attention to your hair and what your hair like your going to start to realize the frequency that you need to wash your hair. Your shampoo should still have your hair feeling moisturized but still having a fresh feeling.
My favs are
Zuresh Clarifying Shampoo (online)
Mane Choice Shampoo ( online + in stores)
I’m still in the look out for more so if you have a favorite let me know below.
What your shampoo should not do
Shampoo should not strip you hair of it’s oils or make your hair extremely dry. You know what I mean when your hair has that squeaky clean sound like your cleaning glass. Your hair should not be that dry and shampoos like Suave, VO5 will leave your hair feeling stripped.
Conditioner is every natural girls fave because the softness it brings but keep in mind what conditioners your using. Is it a conditioner that leaves your hair feeling moisturized afterwards. Choose a conditioner that you think has the right ingrideients for your hair. Make sure you are not putting conditioner on your scalp. Conditioner is mainly for the oldest part of your hair starting from the ends then work your way up.
Finer: Use products that are light to not have your hair weighed down. Products like hair milks will not be as heavy for your hair.
Medium: Try not to use products that are too heavy such as only raw shea butter, or anything too light that will cause frizz. Mixing a milk and a creme is a really nice mix for a twist out or braid out.
Coarse : A mix of a leave in with a heavy creme such as manechoice butter style creme or creme of nature Argan oil butterlicious mixed with a curl and custard different products that will give you the desired style.
Using this trick below of mixing products on your hand helps with choosing the right mix
If the mix comes out clear then it’s great to use. If it shows up white and/or clumpy then don’t even try it.
If you want to read more
3 Ingredients you have to Use for Overnight Hair Growth
Now I want to hear from you
How do you find out the right products for you?