Going natural is a journey of ups and downs as you explore the natural hair patterns and curls and figure out which products work best for you. Choosing products and tools can be very confusing. Here is a list of some basic products and tools to help your get started.
Feel free to share with you friends and family and leave your hair care must-haves in the comments section below if it’s not mentioned above. Happy Hair Journey!!
The most important and first on the list is good old “water”. You’ll find out that water is your friend after all.
Because natural hair thrives in a moisture intense environment, it’s only natural to spray it with water. Unlike our previous beliefs, water is almost if not the best thing that can happen to our hair. Water quenches your hair’s thirst, and various natural oils work as a sealant when applied afterwards to ensure that the water stays where it is needed.
1. Sulfate Free Shampoo
Sulfates and other chemicals can be harsh and dry out the hair, moisturizing shampoo is best. Always read products ingredients and stay away from shampoos as much as possible.
If you notice that one of those ingredients is sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) or sodium laureth sulfate (SLES), then that’s where your sulfates are coming from. These chemicals are quite commonly found in not only shampoos, but in a host of other cleaning/hygiene products.
2. Moisturizing Conditioner
Dry, brittle or frizzy natural hair is a strong indication that you should be using a moisturizing conditioner. It not only helps your hair retain moisture, it will hydrate the hair to improve its texture and elasticity. Moisturizing conditioners can be used as often as daily to keep hair properly hydrated. Natural ingredients to look for in moisturizing conditioners include coconut and olive oils. These natural oils protect hair and guard against protein loss. Note that the first ingredients must be water/aqua for the product to be a moisturizing conditioner.
3. Deep Conditioner
Deep conditioners are designed to penetrate deep into the hair’s cuticle to rebuild and repair damage. These conditioners are heavier in texture and will have longer effect than your daily conditioner. When you deep condition your hair, apply a plastic cap and use a towel or hood dryer to allow the conditioner to fully penetrate before you rinse. Deep conditioning can be done as often as once a week or once a month.
4. Moisturizing Leave-in Conditioner
Leave-in conditioner is a type of conditioner that is applied after a person after shampooing, conditioning and deep conditioning process and which is left in the hair until the next washing.
5. Styling Product/Gel
Gels / Curling Custard / Curling Pudding / Curling Cream….what’s the difference?
Well, even though they all have different names, they all refer to the same thing – styling product that gives your hair hold and includes some moisturising ingredients. In other words, it’s a hair gel combined with oils or butters to make a custard or pudding like cream. These are commonly used by Naturals for wash ‘n’ go styles, twist outs, braid outs etc. An alternative could be to use a gel on top of your moisturizer. It also gives the same effect – depending on how much hold you like.
6. Natural Oils & Butters
To seal in moisture; coconut, extra-virgin olive, castor, jojoba, grape seed are examples of good natural oils. Shea butter, cocoa butter, mango butter are examples of butters
1. Spray Bottle
A spray bottle is definitely a must-haves. It is used for spray liquid moisturizer with is mostly water to the hair.
2. Applicator Bottle
This is mostly used to apply oil on the scalp. Getting a calibrated applicator bottle is an added bonus when making mixes that requires measurement.
3. Wide Tooth Comb Or Denman Brush
This two are the best detaching tools you can think of apart from your fingers of course. Natural hair in all its kinks, coils and curls tend to wrap around itself in knots and you’ll need these tools coupled with some good finger detangling to unravel these knots without ripping your hair apart.
4. Satin/Silk Pillowcase Or Bonnet Or Scarf Or Sleep Cap
Regular cotton pillow case or hair nets or cap can be rough on our edges and entire hair while we sleep. They can strip moisture out of tge hair, snag on the hair and cause breakage. Satin/Silk Bonnet or cap may not be very stylish and pretty but they will prevent these misfortune caused by regular sleep caps as well as preserve your hair style while you sleep.
5. Old T-shirt
Instead of drying your hair with a towel post-shower, swap it for a T-shirt instead. It’s that simple. Why? “When [our hair is wet], it becomes
weaker and softer. If we use a regular towel to dry it, the grooves of the towel become aggressors to the cuticle
of our hair. Towels absorb all the moisture from our hair, when what we want to do is absorb the excess water
without taking most of the moisture that helps our hair from becoming frizzy or creating frizz.”
So why swap in a cotton T-shirt? T-shirt will absorb excess water but prevent your hair from frizzing. “The T-shirt does not have the rough grooves of a towel”. “It’s a flat surface, so the water
sinks into that surface and it slides through the hair instead of [roughing] it up.” Using a microfiber towel; it is lightweight and will give you the same smoothing benefits. T-shirt or
microfiber towel will dry your stands without disrupting your natural curl pattern.
6. Processing Caps (Shower Cap)
These a great for deep conditioning sessions and those who like to do an overnight treatment. They help keep things from getting too messy and also aid in helping to create a greenhouse effect on your hair by trapping the heat generated from your body which further helps the whole treatment process.
You’ll need lots of patience as well. Going natural is not as easy as it seem. There are a lot of bumbs on the way, but with patience you’ll have the right mindset to overcome them.
Most people choose to go natural because they desire a more healthy head of hair, free from various scalp conditions or because they’re tired of all those chemicals which does not do any good.
Go natural for you & not because everyone else is in the game. Natural hair is not a trend!!!
Do it for you, only then you’d appreciate all the ups and downs, triumphs and failures else you’ll find yourself not loving it as much and going back to chemicals.
The rules of natural hair is not set on stone. In fact I’d say there are no rules, just guidelines that serves as a platform for to you begin your journey. Enjoy every step of the because you’re charge.