There is a concept that as a naturalista you only need the bare minimum to care for and maintain your natural hair. The notion that you should be content with using “oil and water only” on your hair is misleading at best. Don’t get me wrong, I believe that nature has provided the ingredients that we need for healthy and thriving hair. See “Natural Ingredients In Our Hair Care Products Are They Worth The Additional Cost”
However, the thought that we only need oil and water for natural hair will undoubtedly lead to dry, thirsty hair. There are several factors that determine how curly hair should be nourished and moisturized, whether your hair is:
- • Type 2, 3, or 4
- • High, low or medium porosity
- • Long, medium, or short in length
- • Thick or fine
- • Wavy, coily, curly or kinky
These attributes have differing needs that require tailored regimens, “one size does not fit all”. Examine the unique needs for your hair type and use best practices for that type.
There are five reasons why ONLY oil and water will not be enough to maintain luscious natural locs. Because:
1 – Product Ingredients Matter
For a long time, the predominant products on the beauty supply shelves that were marketed for natural hair contained mineral oil, petroleum oil, propylene glycol, lanolin and color additives these products are relatively inexpensive. Many of the ingredients are used as sealants, and for the most part were of no benefit to the health of natural hair. Albeit that low-grade products sometimes means lower cost, natural hair needs so much more, is it really worth it, to go cheap?
Synthetic ingredients are not good for our health or natural hair. Products that include:
- • Coconut Oil Moringa
- • Shea Butter Jamaican Black Castor Oil
- • Argan Oil Jojoba Oil
- • Aloe Vera Avocado Oil
- • Olive Oil Honey
To name a few, have vitamins, biotin and fatty acids all attributes that are nourishing for natural hair and help to support its integrity, strength, moisture, provide sheen, definition and act as sealants.
2 – There Is Access To Great Resources
We have more information and readily available access to great resources more than any time in history. There are blogs, vlogs, meetups, influencers, groups, live chats, books, pop up shops and networking events, consequently as naturalista’s we can strive for a deeper understanding about how to care for natural hair.
We are now more informed about the unique needs of natural hair:
- • how to implement regimens and wash day routines
- • how to deep condition, eliminate breakage and shedding and protective style
- • the requirements for daily maintenance, treatments, regular trims, styling, retaining length, avoiding dry hair and using quality products
With insight into the genetics of your hair type, you can determine the products and practices that can be used and make informed decisions about the needs of your curly hair and the maintenance required for its optimal health.
3 – There Are Supportive Communities
There are supportive natural hair communities, specifically created to meet the needs of naturalista’s and this is a great thing. There are naturals who have been on their hair care journey for many years. New naturalista’s can now learn from others that have gone before and benefit from their experiences.
As you begin your natural hair journey you can tune in to what the experts have to say, as they identify what to avoid, what works and what doesn’t.
We can determine which influencer, blogger or group member that has a similar hair type or texture and therefore can emulate the products and practices that work for them.
4 – Regimens Work
Merriam Webster’s dictionary defines regimen “as a regular course of action”. As naturalista’s care for their curly hair and develop their personalized regimens, they can maintain beautiful manes whether they be twa’s, afros, locs, or braids.
With great hair, you can have great styling whether that be updo’s, twist outs, braid outs, bantu knots or wash and go’s the possibilities are endless.
When hair is curly, coily or kinky and you use best practices and quality products this can lead to length retention and gorgeous hair. With a consistent hair care regimen, it is possible to retain a length of a ½ inch a month, if long hair is your goal, waist length hair is possible.
5 – The Availability Of Quality Hair Products
There is greater access to attain hair products formulated with quality ingredients, for those who don’t have the time to prepare their own.
With greater access to quality products, there’s so much choice, about what to use, so your hair looks and feels its best. Products can be trialed through subscription boxes, sample products, or recommendations before committing to a product or brand.
It’s key to figure out the products that work best for your hair, normally a process of trial and error. When you have determined the products that work, there is no need to be a product junkie. You can utilize a select few items and stick with your mix of products tailored specifically for your hair. It’s a fact that no one product will work for everyone.
What You Need
Use oil and water as part of a much broader spectrum of requirements for healthy natural hair. Take some time to appreciate all the resources naturalista’s have available. You can be a part of the movement as much or as little as you like.
Share your experiences of your hair care journey in the comments box below.
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