Nandipha Dilla

Every week Perdeby takes a look at something you should have learned at school to assist you in day-to-to life. This week, we take a look at how to maintain healthy natural hair.

For many girls, taking care of natural hair seems like a daunting task. Not only is it seemingly high maintenance and prone to damage, the products our hair needs are often expensive and inaccessible to the average girl. While this guide may be a foundation to better taking care of your hair, no one knows your hair’s needs better than you do. So listen to your hair and make the right adjustments to accommodate it, you will feel all the better for it.


Washing your hair

It is best to prepare your hair before a shampoo by coating the strands from root to tip with coconut oil and letting it sit for about twenty minutes before a wash. This protects your hair strands from the drying effects of clarifying shampoo and can help prevent hygral fatigue. Sectioning your hair into four or more braids, while time consuming, aids in making your wash day more manageable and less likely to have knots, tangles and breakage.

Next, shampoo. If possible, try and invest in sulphate free shampoo. While sulphate shampoos can be used sporadically to deeply clarify the hair from all build up, sulphate free shampoo does not contain harsh sulphates that strip away moisture that can leave your hair feeling dry.

A moisturising shampoo concentrated to the scalp of your head and a deep, sulphate free conditioner concentrated at the ends of your hair is ideal and can leave your hair soft with enough slip to detangle painlessly. You can then use either a microfiber towel or an old t-shirt to dry your hair after rinsing the products out.


Moisturising your hair

The LOC method is a useful way to keep your hair moisturized throughout the week. LOC stands for Liquid, Oil and Cream and helps your strands retain moisture more effectively. There are many variations to the method used and its use is dependent entirely on you. The standard method includes using a leave-in conditioner for a liquid, an oil such as olive, argan or avocado and cream such as shea butter or a moisturizing cream.

While the number of products may seem alarming, this is a tried and tested way to ensure that your hair’s moisture is sealed into the cuticle and isn’t lost completely to the harsh environment.


Night time hair routine

The last thing we want to do after a long day of lectures is having to deal with our hair by protecting it before we sleep but it can be very beneficial to follow a night time hair routine. It is essential to add back the moisture your hair lost throughout the day with a spritz of water before sealing it with a cream such as shea butter. Section your hair and either start twisting, braiding or cornrowing your hair to make sure that it will be much more manageable in the morning. Cover with a satin scarf or sleep on a satin pillow because the material will not strip your hair from more moisture.


Protective styling

Protective styling is one of the most crucial parts of your natural hair journey as it protects the vulnerable ends of your hair by tucking them away into a variety of styles. You have an array of cornrow, braid, sew-in weave and wig styles to choose from and they all essentially do the same thing. Make sure that the braids are not too tight or pull too harshly as that can damage your ends. Also remember to keep your hair moisturised while it’s protected by concentrating a few spritzes of water at your natural hair regularly.

Protective styling is also popular in that it leaves room for you to breathe, and greatly reduces the amount of work that needs to be done to your hair to keep it protected.

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