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HAIR REGIMEN AND TIPS FOR TRANSITIONING TO NATURAL HAIR

May 17, 2016

Transitioning3

Photo credit 4chairchick.com

We are gaining more and more transitions! It’s good to see that more and more people are encouraged to go natural. This is my one year nappyversary and six months post the big chop.  I can proudly tell you that I will never go back to relaxed or textlaxed  hair again! Let me tell you why: I’ve fallen in love with my pure unadulterated texture, I love the volume and the versatility, I love the styling options… the list is endless! There is only one problem that tends to overshadow all of the advantages; its high maintenance and requires dedication. But guess what…. so does relaxed hair. If you don’t take care of your hair, you will not achieve optimum hair growth. Even if you think you are because you have long hair, try following a routine and you will see that your hair could actually do much better. Remember my mantra: Good hair is a mixture of nature and nurture, if you don’t have it naturally, fake it till you make it by taking good care, simple!

Whatever your hair type, you need to find the right balance of protein and moisture to optimize your hair growth.  However, while transitioning, you’ve gained a new enemy called the line of demarcation. This is the line where the relaxed hair will meet the natural hair and ultimately the point at which the relaxed will start to fall off no matter what you do. If you are like me and love to hold on to length, I’ll give you some tips on how to keep both textures until the big C. I must say though that it’s normal for the relaxed to appear weak and eventually big C itself as the natural hair grows. This is the point I advise people to just go ahead and chop off.

Here is a  hair regimen that you should follow; you may alter it here and there to suit you as time goes on. The whole idea is for you to start with the basic concepts and instinctively, you will know through practice which part of the routine you can stretch longer or  shorter etc.  Be honest with yourself and don’t be lazy! Lol. When you fall off track, fall back in ASAP. Here it goes:

What you need.

  1. Moisturizing Shampoo and deep Conditioner
  2. Protein shampoo and deep conditioner
  3. Clarifying shampoo
  4. Co-wash conditioner
  5. 2 leave in moisturizers- Liquid for rainy seasons and creamy for dry seasons or dry hair
  6. Oils
  7. Wide toothed comb ( as you become more natural, finger detangling is best but for now use a wide toothed comb to wean yourself off!)
  8. Steamer/shower cap
  9. Raw natural products eg shea butter mix, natural honey etc to mix with your deep conditioners or for pre-shampoo treatments (optional but helps a lot to absorb deep conditioners)
  10. Patience and persistence.

What to do.

EVERY WEEK

You should deep condition once a week. This is the most important thing to do in your regimen. If you are to skip anything, don’t skip this!

How: Mix your deep conditioner with raw Shea butter or oils and apply to your freshly shampooed or co washed hair and leave on for at least 30 mins preferably with a steamer. If you don’t have a steamer, no worries; use a shower cap and leave on for an hour.

Recommended deep conditioners:

  • If your hair is 50% or more relaxed (beginning of transition): Keracare Humecto mixed with raw Shea butter/oils/ TR shea and mango butter mix ( great because it has butters, carrier oils, essential oils, vitamins) OR Aubrey Organics honeysuckle rose conditioner mixed with raw Shea butter/natural oils/ TR shea and mango butter mix ( great because it has butters, carrier oils, essential oils, vitamins
  • If your hair is more natural than relaxed ( towards the end of your transition): Carols daughter black vanilla smoothie OR Aubrey Organics Honeysuckle rose conditioner also mixed with the butters or oils

EVERY TWO WEEKS

Shampoo strips your hair of its natural moisture and even more so as you go natural. So, shampoo every two weeks.  The week you do not use a shampoo, you should co wash instead and deep condition.

Recommended Shampoos:

  • Beginners: Keracare sulphate free moisturizing shampoo, Aubrey Organics Honeysuckle rose shampoo
  • End of transition : Carols daughter Black vanilla shampoo, Aubrey Organics Honeysuckle rose shampoo

EVERYDAY

Moisturize with leave ins and seal with oils in that order, every single day! What is important to note here is that the more chemically treated your hair is, the more natural protein you have lost. The opposite is true for natural hair: natural hair generally requires less protein.

Why am I telling you this? You don’t want protein overload which will lead to breakage. Many leave ins have protein in them and they are very useful for ladies with relaxed hair and transitioners. However, once you cross the line, you need to switch to leave ins with less or no protein. Do naturals ever need protein? Yes, but it’s better to get the required dose periodically through protein treatments than to overload your hair with protein daily.  Got it?

Moisturize and seal from the tips up. You don’t need a lot, a little over a tablespoon is enough.

Also massage oils into your scalp daily for 2 minutes for blood circulation which stimulates hair growth.

Recommended leave in conditioners:

  • Beginners( more relaxed hair): Giovanni Direct Leave in (creamy), Carols daughter Black vanilla leave in (spray), keracare leave in.
  • End of transition/ Naturals: Kinky Curly Knot Today (protein free), Carols daughter hair milk leave in conditioner

EVERY 4-6 WEEKS

You need to do a hard protein treatment to strengthen your hair every four to six weeks.  Use your protein shampoo and deep conditioner at this point. Check previous blog post for more step by step details on how to do protein treatments.

Note here that protein treatments vary in strength from hard to mild. As mentioned earlier, you will need a stronger protein treatment if you are relaxed or if your hair is color treated. Nevertheless, I advise clients to do a strong treatment at least every 2 months then follow up with mild protein leave in if chemically treated or transitioning. If you are mostly natural or completely natural, after the strong protein treatment, use a protein free leave in.

Recommended protein treatments

Beginners: Aphogee shampoo for damaged hair followed by Aphogee 2 step protein treatment and balancing conditioner (very strong), ORS hair mayonnaise (moderate-if its too mild you can break an egg into the treatment)

End of transition/naturals: Carols daughter monoi shampoo and conditioner (moderate), aphogee 2 minute keratin treatment (mild), aphogee 2 step protein and balancing conditioner (strong)

You can easily make a mild treatment strong by adding eggs and/or natural greek yogurt to your mild mixture. Pls don’t add anything aphogee 2 step treatment, its very strong!

EVERY 6 WEEKS

You also need to clarify your hair every six weeks. This is basically stripping your hair purposefully from all the product build up to have fresh clean hair to start all over with. You must deep condition after clarifying your hair otherwise it will become very dry

IN-BETWEENS

If you have time, you should co wash mid-week, in between deep conditioning treatments. If you don’t its not a biggie but make sure u co wash each time you wet your hair if u r not going to deep condition eg if you are a muslim and you perform ghusl. When you braid or conrow your hair, co washing is also a good option. Don’t forget that co washing should be performed as an alternative to using shampoo. In fact, most naturals co wash more often than they shampoo but for starters, let’s do it 50:50 and gradually progress as we get more comfy with co washing.

I suggest you keep a diary to keep tabs of everything. It may seem demanding in the beginning but as time goes on, it will become part of you and it gets easier.

One piece of advice, make sure your water heater and shower heads work excellently! Makes a world of difference!!

Please read previous blog posts for details on how to do moisture and protein treatments, how to co wash, moisturize and seal etc.

With practice and patience, I guarantee you will see results!

Big announcement: For your convenience, we now stock our products, toools and accessories at the Fusion Store located at the Capital Hub Mall in Abuja. Visit us!

 

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