Over the years I have come across so many issues natural haired women are discovering with their hair. I’d like to help you all out by talking about some of them, what causes them and how to work with what you’ve got. We're dealing with knotted strands in this article. What they are, how they get there and how to minimize them. We've all had them from time to time - so what's the deal?
Would you like to try a wig or a weave to rest your natural hair? Sometimes you just want a break from styling your natural hair. There are lots of reasons why. You may be in a style rut, experiencing damage from over-styling, or maybe you just want a change for a little while. You can always wear protective styles to rest your hair but it still requires daily styling to maintain this as well as your hair is exposed, which you may not want.
No matter the reason, there are ways you can do this safely without damaging your natural hair. Two options to cover and protect are weaves and wigs.
Should you wear a wig it or have a weave installed, and what are the differences to your natural hair.
Both methods have advantages and disadvantages.
Before talking about porosity, it is important to understand the hair strand and how the outermost layer of the hair works.
The outermost layer of hair is called the cuticle. Under a microscope, resembles overlapping scales. These scales can open and close like window blinds. Its purpose is to prevent or allow penetration of moisture and air (or anything else that touches the surface).
Hair porosity relates to the ability of the hair to absorb moisture through the cuticle layer. Your hair has the ability to absorb up to 50% of its weight when its wet. The degree of porosity is directly related to the state of the cuticle layer. Healthy natural hair with a closed and compact cuticle layer is resistant to penetration. Porous hair has a raised cuticle layer that easily absorbs moisture. As hair grays, the cuticle closes and the hair often becomes what is called "resistant" or "low porosity"
The No-Shampoo Method (also called co-washing) was originally popularized by a curly hair website about 8 years ago. It is a method of “cleansing” the hair without using shampoo which gained popularity after people began to recognize the dangers and drying effects the sulphates contained in most commercial shampoos can have on the hair and skin. People were looking for alternatives.
Basically, the method involves using conditioner instead of shampoo, to cleanse the hair. Sometimes baking soda is added to the conditioner, and sometimes an apple cider vinegar rinse is performed as a rinse at the end of the procedure. The procedure claims that conditioners contain enough cleansing agents to effectively clean the hair and scalp.
As Nappturality’s 10th year comes to a close, I have taken some time to reflect on why I started Nappturality and think about what Nappturality has become during our first decade. Back in 2002 there were no websites exclusively for the care of African American natural hair. No YouTube channels. No Facebook. No Yahoo! Groups. There was nowhere where natural-haired women like me could gather and share our hair care tips and discuss our hair woes in a positive, non-judgmental environment.
The idea of Nappturality was conceived from this and my newly discovered love of my natural, highly textured hair – hair many of us derogatively called “nappy” and the hair which I had hidden and run from my entire adult life. I wanted to capture the feeling of freedom I felt when I finally let go of the damaging straightening processes, weaves and chemicals and share it with like-minded women online, and in the process help others to discover the truth about their natural hair.
So you have been enjoying your daily hair spritzes and refreshing herbal rinses over the long hot summer, but now that winter is approaching, it is time to review and be ready to change your hair care routine and products.
Winter brings lots of challenges with it. Not only the challenge of dealing with cold, wet and dry weather but the hats, scarves we wear and temperature fluctuations from freezing outside to hot inside can all have an effect on the condition of your hair and your health.
Twist outs are one of the most popular styles for natural hair. Twists outs are done when you use two sections to make twists like a rope with your hair. When the hair has set, the ropes are untwisted and the hair holds a wavy, cioly pattern. Two strand twists can be done on just about any hair length or texture for spectacular results that can last for a week or longer.
Here are my top tips for a long lasting and shiny twistout.
So you have decided to try your hand at making your own hair products! Many natural haired women have begun exploring ways to make their own healthy hair products. A lot of this has to do with those who go natural starting to pay attention to what is actually in the products they purchase for their hair and skin. We are turning away from chemicals so naturally we don’t want any dangerous ones, or too many of them, in our personal care products.
Nothing worse than a dry, itchy head. There are some great companies out there who supply raw ingredients for homemade hair products. For instance, From our experience, Nappturality highly recommends the raw products sold by Just Natural Hair Care for consistently excellent quality. That said, you can have the best raw ingredients in the world but if you do not know how to mix and measure them, or which ones to use for different hair situations, you may make your problems worse.
If you have been a part of the natural movement as long as I have, you would have seen hundreds of “natural” hair products come and go. From having nothing specifically geared towards our natural hair in 2000 to 2012 and having the choice of hundreds of hair products has been quite a surge, and a goldmine for those jumping on the natural bandwagon to try to get us to purchase their hair care lines. It can all get confusing.
So I am now going to attempt to decipher for you, the most popular hair product types and their purpose...
Nappturality is all about embracing your NAPPtural, natural hair. Many, many thousands of African American women and women of African descent all over the world have stopped relaxing their hair and are wearing their natural hair proudly. All have different reasons for doing it -- damage, scalp problems, illness, hair loss, finances, curiosity or maybe simply being tired of wasting all day Saturday waiting in a salon. Others saw someone on the train wearing a fierce set of locs, coils or twists and started to rethink their choices.
We're in many of phases of nappturality. We're transitioning, or wearing braids or weaves and thinking about transitioning -- and some of us have just cut off the relaxer and are beginning to learn how to care for napptural hair in the real world. But regardless of how we got here, all of us have these 3 things in common:
- We want to have healthy, beautiful, natural hair.
- We want to see pictures of other women's natural hair.
- We want the transition to natural hair to be as painless as possible.
I want to stop relaxing. What do I do?
There are many factors to take into account when you are trying to decide if you should enroll in School 1 BIG CHOP or School 2 TRANSITION. Here is a little test you can take to see which way may be the best for you. Add up the numbers according to your answers and click on your final score below. Note that your results don't mean you HAVE to transition a certain way, it's a guide to what you may be able to do.