How To Take Care Of Your Afro Hair: Our 5 Best Tips
Our natural hair is the crown that we wear daily. And as such it must be cared for with the best products, tools and love. Often our afro hair is not in the best condition it is, due to lack of care for it. In this article, we will be sharing the top 5 best tips to take care of your afro. These tips will, hopefully, help you increase the length, strength and hydration levels of your hair to bring it to an optimally healthy condition. Your hair is your crown and should be worn proudly.
1 – Moisturise Your Hair
Our natural hair is naturally dry because of its kinky/coily nature. The sebum that is produced by our scalp should be used to nourish our new growth and the rest of our hair shaft. It should travel from our roots to the ends of our hair however it usually gets stuck in the crevices and corners of our curls. As opposed to Caucasians who have straight hair so the oil travels always the way down to nourish it. Hence, we have to moisturise the part of our hair that the sebum did not touch which includes the exposed hair.
The best moisturisation technique for our natural hair is the LOC/LCO method. This method was coined by Rochelle Graham, Founder and CEO of Alikay Naturals in 2015 when she was known as Black Onyx on youtube. Her research indicated that the reason why after we moisturise our hair, it still feels dry is that we did not seal in the moisture. The LOC/LCO method allows you to hydrate and seal in the hydration into your hair strands. Thus reducing the dryness which leads to breakage, split ends and single strand knots.
L stands for liquid, O for oil and C for cream.
Liquid – The liquid is the hydrant for our parched strands. Examples of liquids for your hair that you can use are a spray bottle of water, aloe vera juice, or a water-based moisturiser. Water is the best hydration for our hair. But other alternatives that work just as well are aloe vera juice and water-based moisturiser. The first ingredient in these products is water which is key for our tresses.
Oil – In chemistry class we learned that water and oil do not mix. When they come into contact with each other, the oil sits on top of the water. And, that’s exactly what happens when we apply oil to our hair strands. The oil will trap the water molecules to our hair strands and prevent them from escaping. Thus, preventing moisture loss and embracing your moisture retention. Example of oils that you can use to seal in the moisture added from the liquid includes grapeseed oil, almond oil, and olive oil.
Cream – The last step is to apply creams such as shea butter, almond butter, cupuacu butter, grapeseed butter and so much more. The cream will seal in the moisture added by the water, and any additional benefits added to our hair from the oil. Also, it will impart minerals to our hair shaft as well that will aid in promoting healthy hair.
Depending on the acronym chosen for your hair, the order of the products will be different.
2 – Detangle On Wet Hair Only
Your hair should only be detangled once it is wet with a product specifically a conditioner or deep conditioner. Once water is applied to our hair our strands will soak up the water into its strands which usually causes the shrinkage. Then, we apply a conditioner and deep conditioner to our strands using the praying hands’ method. This method ensures that each strand is evenly coated with the product. Also, the conditioners contain Cetearyl alcohol which is a fatty alcohol that provides the slip to the product. This slips makes detangling with our fingers, comb or even brushes a breeze.
3 – Sleep with Satin Only
Picture credit: isokenenofe.com
If you are aware of sleeping on cotton sheets or pillowcases will leave your hair very dry. The dryness makes our hair strands susceptible to breakage, single strand knots and split ends. To retain the length of and moisture into our hair strands, we sleep on satin materials. The satin materials create a barrier between our hair and the cotton sheets/pillowcases and prevent moisture from leaving our hair. Thus, allowing us to retain the moisture that we worked so hard to apply and retain into our hair strands. You should be sleeping with a satin cap or satin scarf over your hair, or on satin sheets.
4 – Massage and Oil Your Scalp
The health of our scalp plays a very important role in the overall health of our hair. Hence we have to nourish it for it to function effectively. Applying oils to your scalp aids in improving the function of the scalp. The oil will impart the minerals to your scalp that will aid in penetrating the follicles at a cellular level and regenerating the cells. Thus, allowing consistent sebum production needed to moisturise our new growth. Also, if the oil is massaged into our scalp it will promote blood circulation beneath the hair follicles. Our blood transports the nutrients needed for the various areas of our body especially our scalp. Once blood circulation is flowing then the scalp will get what it needs to boost our hair growth.
5 – Wear Low Manipulation Hairstyles
Low manipulation hairstyles are hairstyles that last for an extended period with little to no retouching. Little maintenance will include oiling our scalp, spritzing our hair with moisture or relaying our baby hairs. Hairstyles include wash and gos, twist outs, braid-outs and even puffs. These hairstyles save our hair from experiencing breakage, split ends, single strand knots because we ate not in our hair. Consistently styling or playing in your hair daily will result in single strand knots, breakage, split ends which will affect our length and moisture retention. Thus, not allowing our hair to flourish to the best of its ability. Once you style your hair in any one of the aforementioned styles, your hair will stay in that for a minimum of 4 days once you choose the right product and technique to achieve the hairstyle.
If you need a mobile natural hair stylist in London, don’t forget to book on Afrocks.com