Besides hair growth, moisture is by far the number one area women struggle with in terms of their natural hair. If you are a new natural or in the process of transitioning, this may come as a shock to you but, it is OK to moisturize your hair every day. This does not mean shampooing and conditioning every day but, pure and simple moisture. Moisturized hair will lead to less breakage, greater lengthen retention, easier manageability, softer hair and so forth. The confusion comes into play when women THINK they are moisturizing their hair but, the hair is still dry and brittle. The common thing I hear is “I put tons of coconut oil in my hair so it’s moisturized.” Unfortunately, that will only lead to a head full of oily hair and clogged pores. If you constantly put coconut oil on your hair only to discover your scalp is itchy and the hair is brittle, there is no hydration in your regimen. Remember: oils do not moisturize. If you want to achieve moisturized natural hair here are 7 things you must start doing TODAY.
1. Increase Moisturizing Frequency (Morning, noon & night)
Moisturizing your hair once is the morning may not be enough. Curly hair is naturally prone to be drier than other textures because the sebum has to work 3 times as hard to get from our root to ends due to all the curves along the strand. Use a daily moisturizing lotion in the morning and gently mist your hair with water at night. If your hair also feels dry by mid-day, using a refresher spray like the Obia Natural Hair Curl Hydration Spray as well. The main take-away is moisturizing once or twice a week isn’t going to do the trick. You must moisturize daily and even multiple times a day if needed.
2. Change Your Deep Conditioning Regimen
Deep conditioning is another option where changing the frequency is possibly needed. Hair that is extremely dry and breaking should start on a weekly moisturizing deep conditioning regimen. Moisturizing deep conditioners like TGIN Honey Miracle Mask Deep Conditioner, which is void of protein, will help boost moisture levels and reduce shedding. If you want a pure moisturizing deep conditioner without protein make sure to read the label to confirm.
3. Don’t Confuse A Moisturizer With A Styler
Another common mistake several new naturals make is confusing a styling product with a moisturizer. While there are a few products that work as double duty action, products like gels, curling custards, foaming lotions and mousses should not act as your daily moisturizing product. Stylers are mainly formulated for hold and definition first. A moisturizing product should still be used in conjunction with these items as you will see in most product lines. Use products where water is the first ingredient on the label such as hair lotions and hair milks for daily moisture and stylers to define your curls.
4. Understand How Glycerin Works
Glycerin is a common ingredient found in tons of products and when used correctly, glycerin can also be amazing for your hair. But, you must understand how glycerin works first. At the core, glycerin is a type of humectant, which means it attracts moisture to itself and your hair when it is found in your products. The hydrogen bonding properties of humectants attract water from the atmosphere bringing moisture to the hair and ultimately improves moisture retention. On extremely humid days too much moisture can be attracted to your hair causing the hair to swell and frizz. However, on low humidity days (cold, dry days) where the surrounding air is more dry than your hair, the opposite occurs. Moisture is drawn from the hair back into the air to balance the moisture in the atmosphere. Did you catch all that? If not, read more About Glycerin and Natural Hair.
5. Seal Moisture for YOUR Hair Type
Another key to obtaining moisturized natural hair is ensuring you are sealing moisture for YOUR hair type. I underlined “your” for a reason. Using the L.O.C method is great but this is pointless if your leave-in conditioner, oil and cream do not work for your texture. Every curl type and texture is different. What works for one woman or blogger may not work for you. Ingredients my fine, 4a-4b hair texture enjoys are shea butter creams like the Alikay Naturals Moisture Rich Parfait, thick and creamy leave in conditioners with aloe vera, and avocado oil. My hair remains moisturized up to 3 days with just leave in conditioner and shea butter…very simple and easy to manage. And because coconut oil doesn’t work for everyone also read 7 Amazing Oils for Natural Hair Besides Coconut Oil .
6. Cleanse Hair & Scalp More
Clean hair is another way to achieve more moisturized natural hair. Why? Because cleansing the hair and scalp on a regular basis will ensure product build up is removed which, in return enables your products to work better and allows moisturizing products to actually penetrate the hair and scalp. If you co-wash often product build up will happen and a clarifying shampoo is suggested for use at least monthly. Shampooing your hair every 5-7 days will remove build up, sweat and environmental elements.
7. Drink More Water
Of course this one is a no-brainer but as you’ve probably heard before, healthy hair starts from the inside. If your body is de-hydrated your skin and hair will follow. How ever you choose to take care of your skin, think of some of the same characteristics for your scalp. The common rule of thumb for daily water intake is half your body weight. For example, I am 160 lbs, therefore; I would drink 80 oz, or about 5 bottles of water per day.
What ways do you keep your hair moisturized? Comment and let me know!