Hey curlfriend, I’m here to break down how to build a Natural Hair Care Regimen!
It’s not meant to be rigid or complicated. It’s meant to be a plan of action and to give you a schedule to attain and maintain healthy natural hair. Remember, It’s most important to always listen to your hair and what it needs. If you need a refresher, check out Natural Hair Basics!
How Do you build a basic hair regimen? In order to build a great hair regimen you need to first understand that at its core, a hair regimen is just a consistent plan of action to achieve and maintain hair health. It should be achievable, suit your needs and your lifestyle.
A Basic Hair Care Regimen can be broken down into actionable and clear steps with the WHAT/WHEN/HOW method for each main component of a Hair Care regimen. These are Cleansing, Conditioning, Treating, and Retaining/Maintaining.
WHAT: What are you doing to your hair? Are you cleansing, conditioning, styling, deep conditioning and etc.
WHEN: With your step above chosen, When are you going to perform it? What is your timeframe that you can consistently keep up with. What's the average timeframe for the step chosen.
HOW: How are you choosing to complete the step that you chose from above?
Below you'll see the 8 parts to a hair care regimen. 1 is Cleansing, 2-3 are Conditioning, 4 is Treating and 5-8 are Retaining/Maintaining.
Basics of a hair care regimen
Cleansing/Shampoo (Moisturizing,Volumizing, Damaged, Color-Treated or Clarifying, Pre-poo)
Rinse-off Conditioners (Conditioners used to either detangle with, co-wash with, or quickly condition hair for less than 5 minutes)
Deep Condition ( alternating between Moisture and Protein)
Scalp Care [Sugar Scrubs, Hot Oil Treatments, Scalp Massages, (Strand Extras like Tea Rinses, Clay Washes, ACV rinses fall under the Treatment Category)]
Daily Hydration and Moisture ( Maintaining hydration levels on scalp and for hair strands)
Sealing and Styling(Protective Styling, End Care)
Detangling/Trims( or Search and Destroy for Single Strand Knots/Fairy Knots)
Trims (from a licensed Professional!)
For example, lets choose Cleansing as your WHAT. Next, you'll need to decide your WHEN, which is when and or how often will you cleanse your hair. Are you shampooing weekly, every two weeks, or are you a super low maintenance type of girl that shampoos monthly? Usually, if you fall in this shampoo monthly category, you’re lowkey on product use too which is why you could stretch cleansing. People who usually opt to shampoo monthly co-wash in between their cleansing. This is where you choose what works best for your lifestyle. Then you decide the HOW. How will you be cleansing your hair? Will you being using a shampoo, a cleansing conditioner, or a liquid dry shampoo for example. This is the time you assess your scalp and see what it needs the most.
So, using the same method above you would then move to the next WHAT, which would be Conditioning. You can choose between a strengthening protein based conditioner or a hydrating moisturizing conditioner. It’s key to maintain to a good balance of the two. Too much protein and your hair dries out, frizzes up, and you experience more breakage. On the other hand, too much moisture and that leaves your hair shafts over hydrated. (crazy isn’t it?). You choose your conditioner based off of how your hair strands and ends look and feel. If they feel brittle or dehydrated you may want to opt for a moisturizing conditioner or for a more penetrating deep condition. Some naturals also detangle their hair with a rinse-off conditioner. You can choose when you detangle. You can detangle when you pre-poo, condition, or deep condition.
Following this WHAT WHEN HOW method for each component of the Basic Hair Regimen will build the ultimate hair regimen. Once you have that in place, you and your hair will grow girl! You can also combine component with another as a time saver. You can detangle while you condition, massage your scalp while you pre-poo. You can also toss in an essential oil like Tea Tree, Lavender. Peppermint or Rosemary into your pre-poo or your conditioner and let the oils do all the heavy lifting!
Treating is just extra love and care if you feel your hair needs it, or because it’s a #hairspaday go crazy girl! Treatments would be Prepoo’s, Tea Rinses, Clay Masks, Hot Oil Treatments, etc.
Retaining. So you just put in all that effort into your hair, now how will you retain that length, that moisture, or that style.
To make this Regimen building process even easier, I'm giving you a free fill-in the blank form with each component of a Haircare Regimen. All you have to do is fill in your WHEN and HOW. Boom, Nailed it!
QUICK TIPS FOR GREAT HAIR
+ Keeping a proper Protein/Moisture Balance.
+ Maintaining a pH balanced head of hair from root to tip.
+ Be mindful of other ways thing can effect hair; hygral fatigue, protein imbalance, heat damage, tension from styling, split ends.
+ Protecting hair from the elements, whether environmental, physical or chemical.
+ Scalp Stimulation with regular massages manually or with a tool.
+ End Care is the key to all Growth struggles ( extra hydration, delicacy, trims, extra penetrating oils)
Retaining: Maintenance and Styling
After succesfully, building a hair routine, the next step is Maintenance, because what is the point of having a consistent path towards healthy hair if you don't know how to maintain it? This is also where styling comes into play.
On a healthy head a hair everything is properly maintained:
The scalp is consistenly massaged to promote circulation and blood flow.
Hair strands are hydrated with water or water based products, penetrating oils are applied, and then the moisture is sealed in with a barrier product.
There is a regular trimming scheduled to keep ends well manicured and in tip-top shape.
You can maintain your health through low-manipulation styling, protective styling, or short-term styling. The difference between the three are the length of time a style is left in the hair, but remember be mindful of how your treat your hair when in proctective styles like box braids or sew-ins, etc. Here are six reasons why its NOT a protective style.
Points to Remember
+ Keeping a proper Protein/Moisture Balance. Maintaining a pH balanced head of hair.(So important, I have to say it twice.)
+ Shampoo should be chosen based on your scalp condition and your condition should be chosen based on your actual hair strands. (For example oily scalp and dry ends. You would choose a shampoo that treats oily scalp and a conditioner to hydrate and reset the moisture levels in your hair).
+ It’s not just about Hair Type. It’s about Texture, Type as in wavy, coily, curly, kinky, Density and Porosity. Hair type shouldn’t be used as class-ism but as a way to figure out how to manage what God put on your head.
+ It’s about deciphering your hair for better care.
All a Hair Regimen is is a plan of action. How you plan to keep your hair clean, how you plan to keep your hair healthy, and how you plan to retain your length(if that’s a goal of yours). Your wash days don’t have to be some long drawn event unless (say it with me, #issahairspaday). Assess your hair beforehand and remember what I’ve mentioned above.
MAJOR KEY ALERT
Is your scalp feeling overly dirty/product build-up? (clarify)
Hair breaking/splitting more than usual? (tea rinses, oil rinse or pre-poo)
Ends feeling raggedy(deep condition)
Are you removing a protective style(do the works baybay #hairspaday)
Here's a quick and easy Weekly Haircare Routine example that I shared on my Instagram account. You can utilize this also to build your ulimate haircare regimen so that you can have your best hair ever. Screenshot to save or if you're on a computer (GASP) right-click and save this freebie!
Want more in-depth information or a personalized routine for your hairs unique needs? Join Digital Hair Repair and gain a natural hair bestie to help walk you through every step of the way.
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