In today’s post we tackle washing your hair. This is the basic action of removing dirt from dust, product build up from your hair and scalp. Because our scalp is made up of tiny pores from which our hair grows, dirt, excess product and dust can block our pores hindering hair growth.
So how do you know that your hair is due for washing?
• When your regimen says so. At the beginning of your journey as we said last month, your hair hasn’t yet figured itself out and training your hair in a regimen helps to get it into a routine and to get yourself used to taking care of your hair. I shared a simple routine here that can guide you on when to clean your hair.
• When you have a greasy/dirty feel to your hair We have all gone through that phase when our hair just felt dirty… not because of the duration between wash days but we had that feeling when we touched our hair. It could be the greasy feel on our hair strands or scalp…itchiness in our protective style or when our hair was visibly dirty. The there, is your hair needing a wash desperately.
• When it has been too long Sometimes our busy schedules catch up with us and we forget to give our hair and scalp the much needed TLC it requires. It is recommended that we wash our hair between once a week to once a month.
Preparing for a wash
Once you have figured out how often you would like your wash day to be… there are a few things that you need to make your wash successful.
• Pre-poo This is a treatment that you do to your hair prior to shampooing your hair. Pre-poo comes from two words: pre meaning before and poo which is short for shampoo. In a nutshell this is basically the practice of adding oils to your hair to prevent loss of the hair’s natural oils.
• A sulfate free shampoo
Sulfate free shampoos are best to use to cleanse natural hair or at least better than Sulphur shampoos. They can be pricey, but are a worthwhile investment. In case that cannot fit into your budget, a sulfate shampoo once in a month, with a co-wash in between should be just fine.
• A rinse out conditioner
This will be your first step in remoisturising after cleansing your hair. Sometimes shampoos strip our hair of the moisture and natural oils that it has, thus getting a good conditioner could be your first step in recovering lost moisture. The best conditioners are those without silicone as ingredients(because silicones are sealants and they could easily lock moisture out of your hair strand) and those that have really good slip. Nine of this however are cast in stone, so be sure to get a conditioner that works.
• A cotton tee-shirt See that material that your towel is made of… that combined with the action of physically drying your hair can damage the hair and lead to excessive tangling of the hair. A better way to dry your hair is to use a cotton tee shirt and wrapping your hair then squeezing the hair gently to get rid of excess water. The aim is not to get your hair excessively dry but rather to leave your hair damp for the next process.
HOW TO DO IT
1. Pre-poo for 30 minutes or overnight . The best oils for Pre-poo are coconut oil, avocado oil and olive oil. These have small enough molecules to penetrate your hair strands. (more information about Pre-poo next month so keep it tuned)
2. Saturate your hair with water… then divide your hair into sections. Ideally, you should wash your hair in twists to avoid excessive tangling.
3. Begin to apply shampoo focusing mainly on your roots because that is the place that needs cleansing the most.
4. Rinse out the shampoo off your hair and apply your conditioner. Some people prefer to detangle hair at this point.
5. Let your conditioner sit for anywhere between 15 minutes to one hour.
6. Rinse it out well.
• Dilute your shampoo… It will help you to stretch the usability of the product . Also you may realize that your hair doesn’t need all that shampoo that you slap on it.
• Take advantage of wash day to massage your scalp… massages improve blood flow to your scalp.
• You can consider washing your hair in twists… your hair tangles less but you need to really rinse your hair to get the products out of your hair strands.