Long flowing hair has always been associated with woman of great beauty. In fact it is often termed as a person's crowning glory. Women spend fortune on their hair because beautiful hair signifies youth ,health and vitality. There is no standard definition of natural hair care, that could be used for everyone. Hair science is complected. A product or remedy that bad for one person might be fine for someone else. The use of natural products mostly can make your hair very healthy. A healthy life is somewhat connected to the kind of environment you are in. Bad health can lead to bad energy levels and a negative impact on your life. You will have zero inspiration and bad ideas towards your work and social life. Before you could decide your product and hair care routine it is more important to know your hair well. Otherwise even the most luxurious product or the most wonderful remedy can give you zero benefits. Your hair can be in perfect shape and you will feel happy and healthy overall. Sometimes it happens that if you use natural products for your skin and hair you will feel fresh and healthy daily.
Natural hair care products nourish your scalp, which helps you relax and behave actively the whole day. Here we will discuss first of all about hair structure , because this is very important to know your hair first of all. Your hair is not static. Your hair is changing constantly depending on the weather, your natural oils, your diet, your hormones, your hair ritual and the products you use. Get to know your hair; the elasticity, the texture, the density and porosity. Knowing your hair and using your intuition and doing what is best for you will assist you greatly with caring for your hair.
Types Of Hair
Normal Hair : Normal hair has balanced sebum. It is neither too oily nor too dry.The has natural shine. such type of hair needs to be protected from harsh chemicals. Normal hair can use most natural products & herbs. Such hair can look beautiful without products overload.
Dry Hair: Dry Hair lacks sebum. It looks dull ,brittle, and frizzy, Dry hair may have split ends or may have dry flakes It is best to shampoo dry hair less frequently, use natural hair care products with moisturising, hydrating and conditioning agents and essential fatty acids. Chemical hair treatments should be limited . Weekly intensive treatments such as hair oil and hair mask work wonders , protect hair from sun. Drink plenty of water for hydration and moisture and take essential fatty acids internally, such as evening primrose or flex seeds oil. Use essential oil and herbs that are hydrating, restorative and balancing.
Oily Hair: Oily hair has excess sebum . It looks weighted down, lacking body and looks dull. Oily hair may have oily flakes . The imbalance can be from diet ,hormones, health issues ,medication or product use . Such hair should be washed frequently with mild shampoo to reduce oil production.Use mild conditioners, hydrating mists, oil free serums, minimal oil , fruit and clay masks work well. Use herbs , essential oils that are cleansing , balance and astringent.
Hair chemistry is the science of the hair structure, the properties and composition of hair and the reactions of matter and the molecular systems.
Hair is protein, keratin and small amounts of moisture and lipids. The condition of the hair is affected by the health of the scalp and the health of an individual. Hair reflects imbalances in the body. The physical structure of hair consists of the follicle and the hair shaft.
Hair begins in the deep layer of the skin, the epidermis. At this point it is called a follicle, not hair. The follicle is the living root of hair. The dermal papilla is a bulb formed at the base of the follicle. This bulb is the living area filled with blood vessels, blood and nerves. The papilla and follicle must be healthy to prevent hair loss and grow healthy hair. We are born with all the follicles we will ever have. We lose follicles as we age.
Hair grows from the follicle and through the skin. Once it is through the skin and on the scalp, the follicle is now called the hair shaft, also known as a hair strand. At this point, hair is no longer living. The hair is dead. The hair shaft is protein, also known as keratin. The hair shaft is the part that cosmetics (hair care products) and hair care services address. The hair shaft (hair keratin) is fiber. Think of and care for the hair as fiber. The hair shaft is made up of the medulla, the cortex and the cuticle.
The medulla is the inner layer of the hair shaft. It is nearly invisible. There is still uncertainty for the exact role the medulla plays. The medulla is the part tested to discover information on a person’s diet and drug use. This is the part of hair tested for a drug test. It may be present in hair or may not. Mostly it is found in coarse hair.
The cortex is the middle of the hair shaft, the core of hair and composed of protein fibers and contains melanin. The cortex gives the hair strength. Melanin determines the hair color. The more melanin there is, the darker the hair. Curls are determined by the amount and ratio of cells in the cortex and the ability to absorb moisture.
The cuticle is the outer layer of the hair shaft and consists of protective layers of keratinized scales. These thin scales look like roof shingles. In time, the shingles are worn down from styling the hair, chemicals (hair dying, relaxing), harsh hair care products, washing the hair and the environment. The inner hair is then exposed and easily damaged. The cuticles are open or closed.
Hair is naturally porous and absorbs moisture. Porosity is the ability or
inability to absorb moisture or chemicals into the cortex of the hair shaft.
Hair can have high porosity, middle porosity and low porosity. Hair with low
porosity is resistant and doesn’t readily absorb chemical treatments,
moisture or conditioning treatments. Middle porosity is the ideal range. The
more porous the hair is, the more permeable the hair is and moisture and
chemicals are allowed to easily enter but too porous leaves the hair open
Porosity varies with the type of hair, age of the hair, the chemicals used on the hair and the condition and shape of hair
Hair with high porosity absorbs more water when it is wet but then loses
the moisture when it dries resulting in a puffy hair look. Heat styling tools,
hair coloring and chemical relaxers can cause high porosity in hair.
To determine the porosity of your hair, do a porosity test or feel it. If your
feels rough when it is dry or rubbery when it is wet it has high porosity.
The diameter size and cross-sectional appearance determines hair shape
and can range from fine to coarse.
CURL AND TEXTURE TYPING SYSTEMS LOIS SYSTEM©
The LOIS SYSTEM© is covered in the book, The Science of Black Hair by Audrey- Davis-Sivasothy. The system is based on the curls, bends and kinks in hair and the sheen, shine, strand size, density and texture.
L– All hair with bends
O– Hair strands are like a spiral
I – Hair lies mostly flat
S– Hair looks like a wavy line
Andre Walker Curl and Texture Typing System
Andre Walker (Oprah Winfrey’s personal stylist for over 25 years), was one of the first to come out with a curl code for textured hair.
Naturally Curly Texture Typing℠ System
Naturally Curly further developed Andre Walker’s classification system. Naturally Curly’s founder expanded on it and they developed the Texture Typing℠ system for wavy, curly and coily hair. Their system is the typing system that is referenced the most.
The density of hair refers to the close proximity of the hair strands on the scalp and how closely they are packed.
HAIR ELASTICITY – HAIR SHRINKAGE
The hair can shrink ½ or more of its stretched length. The hair is very elastic when it is wet and stretched. Generally, wet hair is the best time to style and detangle the hair as it reduces breakage of hair. This may also depend on the individual and she or he may prefer to dry detangle.
Hair grows approximately ¼”-½” per month. Each person’s rate for hair growth varies and depends on many factors. The maximum length of uncut hair is determined by care of the hair and genes and the individual’s growing phase length.
THE HAIR GROWTH CYCLE
There are 3 stages of hair growth in the cycle, from actively beginning growth from the root to hair shedding. These are known as the Anagen phase, Catagen phase and Telogen phase.
THE ANAGEN PHASE
The Anagen phase is the period of growth. The cells in the hair bulb divide rapidly creating new hair growth. Hair actively grows from the roots for an average of 2-7 years before hair follicles becomes dormant. In this time, hair can grow anywhere between 18-30 inches. The length of this phase is dependent on your maximum hair length, which varies between people due to genetics, age, health and many more factors.
THE CATAGEN PHASE
The second phase of your hair growth cycle is Catagen. This period is short, lasting only 2-3 weeks on average. In this transitional phase, hair stops growing and detaches itself from the blood supply and is then named a club hair.
THE TELOGEN PHASE
Finally, hair enters it’s third and final stage called the Telogen phase. This phase begins with a resting period, where club hairs rest in the root while new hair begins to grow beneath it. This phase lasts for around 3 months.
After this time, the resting club hairs will fall out to allow the new hair to come through the hair follicle. This is nothing to be alarmed about and is a natural process that should go completely unnoticed. Each follicle is independent and goes through the growth cycle at different times so you don’t lose patches of hair all at once and only shed 50-100 hairs each day. Meanwhile, the other 80-90% of your hair will be in the Anagen phase, growing long and strong! Those hair that have longer period of anagen phase are thicker and longer. Anagen phase could be prolonged by good diet, exercise and good products.
NATURAL HAIR GROWTH
For optimum hair growth, hair needs to stay in the Anagen phase for a long as possible. This can be supported by a healthy diet and lifestyle, using products that care for your hair and avoiding unnecessary damage that may contribute to your hair growth cycle being disrupted.
MOISTURE IS VITAL
Naturally textured hair craves moisture and it’s important to lock in this moisture. Humectants generally work well to add moisture to the hair. Light oils and conditioners can help to seal in the moisture. Heavy oils weigh down naturally textured hair.
Causes of Hair Breakage
Hair is very vulnerable at the bends and curls and breaks easily. Relaxers and chemical processes break the protein bonds.
Detangling with combs.
Extra tight braids. Rough grooming of hair. Over shampooing.
Harsh shampoos. Over conditioning. Product build-up.
Environmental factors: pool chlorine, sun, heat, cold, hard water and pollutants. Nutritional deficiencies.
Oxidative Hair colors
Prevention of Hair Breakage
Hydrate the hair. Moisturize the hair.
Keep a protein-moisture balance.
Gently comb the hair.
Best to comb and style the hair when it is wet unless a dry detangle is better for you.
Use t-shirts for the hair; towels may snag the hair depending on the hair texture.
Sleep on silky soft pillowcases. Wear soft silky scarves to sleep in.
Apply conditioner on braids at night and cover with a silky scarf.
The scalp craves circulation and stimulation. Keeping the scalp fresh, massaged, and hydrated and clog-free from heavy oils, helps to keep the scalp healthy and allow hair to be vibrant. Use light oils for the scalp.
TRANSITIONING TO NATURAL HAIR
Slowly transition the chemically relaxed hair to natural hair. Start a ritual to care for the new growth of your natural hair.
Transition with co-wash, hydrating mists, hair rinses and leave-in moisturizers. Be patient with this transition. Use natural hair coloring methods like henna and indigo contributes a lot in retaining healthy hair
GENTLE CARE FOR NATURALLY TEXTURED HAIR
The care and needs for an individual’s hair depends on her unique hair type. Naturally textured hair needs gentle care.
Lock moisture in the hair.
Pay attention to protein and moisture balance.
Gentle cleansing 1-3x a week.
Try gently wash methods in regular routine like sulphate free shampoo. Avoid sulphate shampoo . These could be harsh to hair. But you can wash twice a month with sulphate shampoos too .
Do herbal hair rinses.
Detangle from the ends to the roots.
Use a little light oil, Shea butter or conditioner on the hair. Try a spray moisturiser on the hair.
Use a wide toothed comb for the ends.
Use t-shirts on the hair to dry and blot the hair.
Steam the hair.
Deep condition the hair.
When applying product, gently squeeze the hair and work the product down into the hair, without rubbing or friction.
Use natural oils and butters.
NATURAL HAIR CARE PRODUCTS
Clarifying Hair Rinse
Protein Based Moisturisers
Deep Conditioning Moisturising Treatments once a week, try it with heat for 15-30 minutes.
Protein Based Conditioning Treatments – do once a month or once in 6 weeks.
Braid Moisturising Spray
Hydrating Mists – use daily
Pre-Poo Hair Oil
Hair Oil – Use light oils. Use oil as a pre-shampoo treatment or after a moisturiser to seal the hair or as a hot oil treatment.
Hair Butter – Use as a pre-shampoo treatment or as a moisturiser to seal the hair or as a hot oil treatment.
Essential Oils – add a drop onto the fingertips and finger comb through hair or mist onto hair in a hair mist.
For all natural Hair care product you can buy from Organic Roots
“The hair is the richest ornament of women.”
~Martin Luther King
Love your hair