Building a natural hair regimen is key for healthy hair even though learning what to do with your hair is hard at the start. There’s so much to learn, or at least it seems that way and when coupled with the large number of the ever so delightful YouTube videos, it can get overwhelming. I love watching YouTube videos; there’s so much great content but sometimes you just want something very specific and simple. The good news is one year into your journey you’ll have a good idea how to deal with your hair, and all of the other stuff will just be supplementary. A hair regimen is a systematic plan to improve and maintain the health of your hair. This is my four step regimen, as simple as it get.
1. Combined Pre-Poo and detangling (before shampooing):
“Pre-pooing” is coating your hair with oil (coconut oil, olive oil…) before shampooing to protect against hygral fatigue (more on this later). You know what’s better than just slapping oil onto your hair? DETANGLING, yes! When you detangle before shampooing, you won’t need to detangle at any other step. This is under the assumption hair is washed in twists. Cover your hair in a plastic bag (kaveera) to generate heat and facilitate oils sinking into hair strands.
This is the cleansing step in the regimen. Now some people don’t use shampoo at all, but from experience shampoo is so vital to clean your scalp and hair (depending on the products you use). Choose a sulfate free shampoo to limit the drying and stripping effect. If all you have is a sulfate shampoo (contains Ammonium lauryl sulfate (ALS) and sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS)), don’t fret; just dilute it with water and follow up with a conditioner. Alternatives to shampoo include clay masks, co-washing (literally washing hair with conditioner), and water. I use any one of these options depending on how my hair feels.
3. Deep Condition:
I do a moisturizing deep treatment every time I shampoo (every 2 weeks). The only time I use a rinse-out conditioner is after a gentle wash (clay mask or water only) and after a protein deep treatment (every 4-5 weeks). I always apply heat when deep conditioning.
For the final step, use the LOC (Liquid Oil Cream) or LCO (Liquid Cream Oil) method. Let hair dry in twists. Watch the video below for a more elaborate take on LOC vs LCO.
If you have questions on styling I’ll tell you one thing, I don’t style my hair regularly, especially not on wash day. By styling I mean bantu knots, roller sets, twist outs, and flexi rod sets. If that’s left you with more questions, soon I will share with you why I don’t style my hair often. I re-moisturize my hair 1-2 times during the week. At night, I keep my hair pinned up in a ponytail, large twists or braid.
- Pre Poo and detangle
- Shampoo & Condition (or cowash & alternative clarification)
- Deep Condition
- Moisturize (LOC or LCO)