When you first return to natural hair you will soon realize that pretty much you’re starting all over with your hair care. You will now have to take the time to research natural hair care and become familiar with yours. One topic you will consistently come across is having a hair routine.
A hair routine is the steps you do in order to keep your hair happy and healthy. It includes wash day, moisturizing, detangling, trimming, and styling.
If you are confused about what a typical hair routine looks like here is an example of one:
Conditioner (co-wash optional)
These are steps every natural needs in order to have healthy natural hair. Missing one step might hinder one’s journey.
I know some are wondering where is the detangling step? Everyone does this in so many different ways it something that is inevitable.
By default, you’re going to detangle whether it’s with tools or fingers. It’s not a step that anyone misses. However, the 5 steps mentioned above are steps that sometimes can get missed or neglected especially for new naturals.
As you can see #2 and #3 on my list can be interchangeable. If you are going to co-wash you don’t have to shampoo and vice versa.
However, you can go without co-washing natural hair, you can’t go without shampooing your hair. Shampooing cleans your scalp and in order to have a healthy scalp, you need to shampoo.
Co-washing with conditioner does not contain the detergents that truly cleanses the scalp unless you are using a cleansing conditioner that is designed to cleanse your scalp and hair. Regular shampooing followed by a conditioner or deep conditioner* will give your natural hair more moisture and shine.
After sectioning your hair:
The act of applying a penetrating oil (not a conditioner, but oil) prior to shampooing. Helps to control the expanding and contracting (hygral fatigue) of the cuticle.
A great pre-poo helps to add shine, elasticity, slip and reduces tangles. It’s a step I never miss and I encourage you not to either.
I do this step whether I am shampooing or co-washing. Rinse your hair with warm water. Do not use hot water as is drying to the hair and scalp as it is to the skin.