I remember how happy I was to see that there was going to be a new natural hair company launched in Jamaica with all the cool new products I have loved here in the US for the last four years of my hair journey.
Nettle and Moss, is a pretty young business but it carries enough of the popular brands so I could tell my friends and family in Kingston to go there if I wanted them to try a new conditioner I was currently loving .
It takes time, research and expert logistics for product lines to move across territories and regions so at times a woman on the same hair journey as myself who lives across the globe may not always have the luxury of just running to the nearest Target to pick up a jar of conditioner.
With that said there are other ways of enjoying the benefit of a great product without worrying too much about particular brands with fancy bottles and creamy concoctions that smell like cake.
Sometimes we have to strip a product down to its bare ingredients and if we shop by ingredients chances are if the product is considered an ‘off brand’ it will work just as well as something that is ‘on brand’.
How To Know What To Look For In Your Conditioners
Start out with the basics of what your hair needs and likes. Moisture is always going to be on the list, protein is a great candidate and cannot be left off, and if you are into emollients, ingredients like shea butter* are great and don’t forget about your favorite oils* such as olive oil* or coconut oil*.
Once you have your lists of needs and likes then the next task is becoming familiar with how certain ingredients work especially when they are listed under scientific names that we do not use in everyday conversation.
Let’s build an ingredient list to demonstrate just what we mean.
1. Keratin (Hydrolyzed Keratin)
Protein is the back bone of the hair strand so if you are looking for a product to repair damage or to strengthen the hair, keratin is a great ingredient to see somewhere in the list of ingredients. Hydrolyzed protein simply means that the protein has been broken down into tiny particles that are able to better penetrate the hair strand strengthening it from the inside out.
2. Wheat Protein (Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein)
Works similarly to keratin however the main difference is that it is rich in fatty acids and can make the hair shiner and easier to manage. Hydrolyzed wheat protein is typically found in deep conditioners and can be considered a protein treatment when used on your hair.
If you are slightly protein sensitive, follow up your protein treatment with great moisture treatment so that you get the benefit of the protein without the downsides of protein overload which can cause stiff strands that break easily.