My decision to start a natural product company came as a result of a strong desire to use only pure and natural products on my hair. when I started seeing results, I wanted to share it with the whole world by making plant butters, oils and more natural products available to everyone. I stopped using relaxers more than a decade ago but I have cut my hair several times in between. Sometimes It feels good to change one’s looks from time to time and this is exactly what I did in the Summer of 2018. If you have been a subscriber to our blog, you will see that I have posted a few updates on my simple hair care and how effective it has been. My Summer 2018 cut was a big chop (I define big chop here as a very low cut not simply cutting off damaged or relaxed ends because I didn’t have any). I wanted to grow my hair out from scratch as I noticed the density seemed to have changed over the years.
I had blow dried my hair a few times at a salon I frequented and it started to thin out. Friends and family still thought it looked great but I knew things had changed so I started again. I cut off my entire hair on the 26th of July 2018. It felt really great to take a nice shower where my entire head was covered by falling water. I wanted to leave my cut low for a while but then I started to miss my long hair again so I decided to grow it out again. I wanted to use only pure and natural products from our line up just to see what actually works on 4c hair and what does not. In this blog article, I will break down exactly what I have been doing to retain length and how my hair is growing.
Natural hair trends
I have tagged this article my minimalist hair care regimen because I consider it as such. I am not entirely sure if this statement is 100% accurate but I believe the days of “product junkie behaviors” have been long over for a lot of folks. When the natural hair movement hit, people were stocking up, combining and trying several different products on a frequent basis. You will easily find a huge stack of products in many people’s bathroom cabinets. People wanted to try anything that came out and they wanted to do so immediately. It was pure junkie behavior that was clearly evident on Youtube videos. However, these days, I will bet that people are not continuing with this trend.
The more you learn about your hair and how to manage it, the lower your propensity to spend money on every new product that is launched. Most people are now poised to be minimalists when it comes to their beauty regimen. I don’t know if I fall into this category but I have always wanted to have few products at a time. I prefer emptying out one product before getting another one. There are so many products out there and it is easy to get overwhelmed. After cutting my hair in the Summer of 2018, I decided to simply use natural products, plant based butters and oils on my hair. In the following sections, I will detail my hair care regimen for you. I hope you find it helpful.
My Hair Care Regimen
The best hair regimens usually include activities that nourish and nurture the hair. These include:
I wash my hair with my own handmade shampoo. I have not been able to find shampoos that thoroughly cleanse my hair without stripping and drying it out. We carry a gentle scalp cleanser which I also use when my hair is not too product dense. Our Aloe and green tea conditioning cleanser is 96% organic and natural and does a great job of cleaning the scalp but when I need a deep hair cleanse, I resort to my black soap shampoo.
Recipe for Mela’s black soap shampoo
4 oz Distilled water
10 drops Vitamin E
10 drops Essential oil of choice (tea tree, peppermint and lemon are great choices due to their superior cleansing properties)
1 oz castor oil or fractionated coconut oil.
Melt the African black soap in warm distilled water. After the soap is fully dissolved, allow it cool down fully. After letting it sit for a while, you can then proceed to add the rest of the ingredients.Shake thoroughly before use.
- Deep conditioning treatment
This is an important care regimen especially for tightly curled hair like mine. Deep conditioning is a must for 4 c hair (Dense, beautiful tight curls). This is tender loving care that includes immersing your hair in nourishing products. In my case, a mixture of butters, cream and oils. My hair feels buttery silky after this treatment. Your choice of butters and oils would be made with consideration of the density of your hair. Because my hair is dense, I make sure to use thick oils and butters coupled with a creamy moisturizing conditioner. This ensures that my hair remains buttery soft for several days. If your hair is fine and light, you would be fine with hot oil treatments. My choice butter for my deep conditioning treatment is Tamanu butter.
Deep conditioning makes your hair more likely to be impacted by hair treatments and moisturizing products. So when you have tried every hair care product in the market and nothing works for your hair, it is time to start doing deep conditioning treatments more often and watch your hair blossom once again. You don’t have to buy deep conditioning treatment, you can make yours at home with simple ingredients in your refrigerator and kitchen cabinet.
- Extra virgin organic coconut oil
- Unrefined Tamanu butter
- Pure honey
- Oslove organics hair massage oil: A blend of 11 virgin organic carrier oils known to promote hair growth and health. I use our hair massage oil which is outstanding for supporting hair growth. If your main goal is hair growth, I recommend you read one of our blog articles on “growing your hair with natural oils“.
I will not specify the amount to include in your treatment as this depends on the density of your hair. I have a full head of hair so I am quite heavy handed with everything but to minimize waste, you will have to eye ball the amount needed to coat your entire hair. Mix the products until fully incorporated together. It should be golden brown in color in the end. For best results, before application, you should cleanse your hair with a clarifying shampoo if you have a lot of product build up. You can also just do a conditioning wash if you feel your hair is not dirty. Applying your deep conditioning treatment on dirty hair is a tricky one as some people frown at it. Most deep conditioning products advise you to cleanse your hair before application for effective results. However, everyone is different, I am sometimes guilty of deep conditioning dirty hair when I don’t have much time. You will need to try both options to see if it makes much difference to you.
- Moisturizing regimen
Moisture is an important and essential aspect of a healthy hair care regimen. If your hair lacks moisture, it will break and not thrive, period. I take moisturizing my hair very seriously. For me, its like watering a plant. If you don’t water your hair, it will dry out and wither too. I use our banana juice leave in conditioner to water my hair twice a day. Once in the morning and at night. I will discourage against simply spritzing water on the hair. You can infuse your water with nourishing ingredients like aloe juice or rose water if you have a tight budget. Apart from leave in spritz, I like to apply generous amounts of moisturizing butters to my hair. Because our butters are pure and natural, I do not have any build up that clogs my scalp.
I use natural butters and oils for styling my hair and to keep my hair soft and moisturized
Mela’s ultimate moisturizing hair butter recipe
3 oz Cupuacu or Mango butter
2 oz Murumuru butter
4 oz Tamanu butter
2 oz Coconut oil (extra virgin organic)
3 oz Oslove face and body oil/oil of choice
10 drops of Vitamin E
7 drops of essential oil of choice
Simply melt the butters down, add in the oil and let it sit for a while in the refrigerator to solidify. Afterwards, simply add vitamin E, any essential oils of choice and whip the mixture up to get it soft and fluffy. This is also a good no melt butter. You can simply skip the melting process or you can melt and mix the ingredients together without whipping.
- Hair Treatments (hot oil treatments, protein treatments, hair steaming and more)
Some people take it up a notch with several other treatments including hot oil treatments hair steaming and infusions. Hot oil treatment is a way to maximize the benefits of carrier oils for hair. It involves warming the oil slightly. To ensure that this treatment works properly, you will need to wash your hair thoroughly first. while your hair is damp, simply coat it with the warm oil. Cover your hair with a plastic cap and wrap up with a towel to generate heat. some people choose to sit under a hooded dryer to speed up the treatment process. Our hair massage oil is designed specially for this treatment and works wonders even after just one use. I do this treatment once a month. I would prefer to do it more often if I had the time.
Hair steaming is often done in salons. It involves an infusion of moisture into the hair strands. It is often followed by a protein treatment. I do not do protein treatments often because my hair is thick and has a high porosity level. If your hair is thinning out, it may be something to consider. Hair styling is optional as people prefer to have their hair in protective styles especially during colder months. Most people rely on hairdressers to do that for them but it is important to be careful while selecting hairdressers. If you simply walk into any hair salon around your home without a pre-consultation first, you run the risk of undoing all the good you have done in maintaining and nurturing your hair. If you are looking to maintain healthy hair, I would also recommend you read our blog article on what to avoid. Want to grow strong and healthy hair? Say NO to these things.