Natural hair, it’s safe to say is no longer a passing trend, it’s more than that. Natural hair has now evolved to a statement and a lifestyle. But with every ‘new’ thing, there is bound to be a lot of information that can leave you scratching your head and asking really? I have been natural for over 4 years now and the curious side of me is always looking for new products, techniques etc that will help me up my game and enjoy my hair more. I have tried a lot of techniques and followed plenty of advice, so here are a few over-rated natural hair techniques in my opinion that you can just brush over!
Top 3 over-rated natural hair techniques
1. Water Only washing. This is when you cleanse your hair with nothing but water. The idea behind this is that as you massage your scalp the water lifts away impurities. The massaging stimulates your natural hair sebum and as you wash down your strands, the sebum coats the hair strands for what is called total sebum coverage which moisturises and softens the hair. The argument for, is that our ancestors didn’t use shampoos yet their hair was still clean. Others suggest that shampoos are full of chemicals that dry out your hair. Others also say that they experienced hair growth, reduced shedding and less tangles.
Why do I think it’s over rated? Firstly, with the amount of products we use on our hair, water is not an effective cleansing agent! The most simplest of routines have at least 5 products, not counting the amount of times you use each product in the week. How many times do you use a leave-in conditioner or an oil? The argument for our ancestors never shampooing their hair is invalid to me because how do we know if they used an equivalent but it just wasn’t called shampoo? They also didn’t use half as much products as we do now, then there’s also pollution, weather, diets, we could continue this environmental difference list for another few paragraphs at least!
TIP – If you are really worried about chemicals, try choosing a vegan/organic shampoo that gently cleanses without stripping your hair. There are plenty of natural alternatives like cleansing clays or African Black Soap
2. Two shampoos, one wash day. Using detangling shampoo for the 1st rinse and going in with a moisturising shampoo the 2nd rinse? Or using a clarifying shampoo then a moisturising one? This is not only expensive but a waste of time and I wonder why some naturals complain about wash day lasting the whole day.
TIP – A good shampoo can multitask. If you really want detangled hair before you wash, simply detangle before or use the foam from the shampoo for detangling. Washing in sections will also reduce the amount of tangles during the wash process.
3. Condition, Deep condition
For this technique, a rinse out conditioner is used to detangle and condition followed by a deep conditioner for more intensive conditioning. But here’s my problem with this, a rinse out conditioner will work on the surface to close the cuticle. A deep conditioner penetrates deeper to work from the inside out. So if by conditioning first, you have closed the cuticles what real benefits, if any will you experience from the deep conditioner? too much conditioning can actually lead to limp/mushy hair.
TIP – Use your conditioner to detangle. Use blogs/YouTube to find out the best conditioners with a lot of slip (that’s why reviews exist!) so that you can use one conditioner for both, saving you time and money.
What advice/techniques have you come across that has left you thinking, really?