I joined in a hair discussion on a site a while back. Someone made a comment about their hair. I’m reposting it here in the hopes that it will be useful. Here is her comment and my response.
I am trying to hang on in there but my head looks like a Brillo pad….a hot mess….like I said now I been washing it and putting hair wax in it and just rolling…..it’s curly but still…..looking like a Brillo pad.
But I’ve been watching You tube clips….not sure which direction I want to go…..and I do live like 4 blocks away from some natural hair salons. I might just find somebody to braid my hair…
If your hair is dry, wax will make it worse because it’s a barrier to moisture. You may be able to use it as a sealant, but personally I wouldn’t. If your hair is curly while wet, normally if you add a leave in or something to coat it, it will dry that way if you want it to. You can’t handle it in the mean time or it will frizz or fro. Even though you are natural, you still have to deep condition. If you have scab hair, or hair that is damaged from relaxing or straightening it to blend in with your new growth, sometimes it just has to grow out. Your texture will change as it grows out, but sometimes it can take a year or more. If you are shampooing daily, you might want to switch to conditioner washes instead. If you aren’t using heavy products, conditioner by itself or even rinsing is enough to clean your hair, and it wont strip it so you will have less frizz. Oil is not a moisturizer, though it can be used to seal it in. If your hair is very dry, increasing how often you wash will help, if you aren’t stripping your hair with each wash. If you are going to conditioner wash, don’t use heavy pomades, use light oils. Also some products have “cones” in them, which can only be removed from the hair with shampoo. They make your hair look great at first, but they coat the hair, and can cause your hair to be dry or dull looking. I have nothing against cones, but if you use a product with them, then you will need to use shampoo more often. There are water soluble cones that will break down with just water. More info on cones:
List of cone free conditioners:
Shampoo list you may be intersted in:
List of commonly used hair product ingredients:
Here’s a list from naturallycurly.com. The water soluble ‘cones are less likely to build up:
Amodimethicone……….not soluble in water by itself
Amodimethicone (and) Trideceth-12 (and) Cetrimonium Chloride……….mixture that is soluble in water in the bottle
Behenoxy Dimethicone……….Sparingly soluble in water
Cetearyl methicone……….not soluble in water
Cetyl Dimethicone……….not soluble in water
Cyclomethicone……….not soluble in water
Cyclopentasiloxane……….not soluble in water
Dimethicone……….not soluble in water
Dimethicone Copolyol……….water soluble
Dimethicone copolyol……….water soluble
Dimethiconol……….not soluble in water
Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein Hydroxypropyl Polysiloxane……….water soluble
Stearoxy Dimethicone……….Sparingly soluble in water
Stearyl Dimethicone……….not soluble in water
Trimethylsilylamodimethicone……….not soluble in water
Lauryl methicone copolyol……….water soluble
You will have to spend a lot of time finding the products that work for you. When I started out I had to be heavy handed with my hair products because my hair would drink up anything I put in it. Now that all the chemicals are out and I have no heat damage, my cuticles are sealed and it doesn’t take a lot to get the job done. Order one of the sample packs from Qhemet and start there. The Honey Tea Gel and Heavy cream work well together. Myhoneychild.com has a cream I used to use, called buttery soy cream, that worked well too. http://myhoneychild.com/inc/sdetail/211
I use a leave in called Giovanni Direct Leave in. It doesn’t work well under gels though. http://www.luckyvitamin.com/item/itemKey/62455
It costs 8-9 bucks locally at health food stores, under five bucks at luckyvitamin.com. You can also purchase liter sizes at a very reasonable price at massagewarehouse.com. I use the Fantasia IC gel in clear or blue. It doesn’t mix well with the giovanni though and it’s not a moisturizer.
I’m sort of limited with the products that I can recommend, because I’m avoiding parabens, a set of preservatives that can mimic estrogen in your body. Several of the product lines I listed are from black women who went natural, and couldn’t find anything that worked for their hair, and created their own, and many only use natural preservatives. Don’t be afraid to try products from “white” companies “designed” for caucasian hair. I only mention this because some folx believe if it doesn’t say it’s specifically for black hair, that they cant use it. It’s only marketing. You just want to go for moisturizing products for dry hair, as products that say they add volume will normally be too light weight or drying.
There are a lot of products that work well that you can get locally. I think the Elasta QP Mango butter is great, and it smells great. I only stopped using it because of the parabens. When I went natural, I relied heavily on product recommendations and online ordering, especially since I was avoiding parabens.
If you haven’t already, I strong suggest joining a forum and asking for recommendations. Naturally curly.com is a great place since the members there try new products daily. They can help you type your hair and help you try stuff out.
Info on typing:
If you scroll down, these pages has different pics and explanations of hair types.
Don’t let some folx make you think that hair typing determines “good” or “bad” hair. (If it’s healthy, it’s good hair.) It was designed to help find products that will work well with different hair types, and types 1-4 are based on the SIZE of the curl in your hair, and has NOTHING to do with texture. You can be a 4a with fine texture or coarse texture. 1 has no curl, 4 has very tight curls. When the hair typing came out (by this stylist named Andre) There were a lot of black women left out because they had hair between type 3b and 4a. It was unofficially added as 3C. I am mostly 4a, with some 3c at the nape. One other thing, don’t be surprised to have diff textures. I have 3 different ones. My crown is very coarse and dry, the nape is thinner and curlier, and the rest is in between.
Note: I listed several forums and hair care sites in the previous post, Natural Hair Part 1.