I’ve been asked in the past how i personally know what techniques work for my hair and which ones don’t and how they can figure out what makes their hair happy. My answer is and always will be EXPERIMENT! Experiment, experiment, experiment! Simple isn’t it?
Let me ask you this. If you’ve always done things one way, how can you be sure that way is the best way unless you have a comparison, something else to compare it to?
How do i know that my hair responds better to weekly rather than fortnightly washes? How do i know that detangling tools work better for me than solely finger detangling? How do i know my hair responds well to regular moisturising and sealing? Because i experiment. I’m always trying new/different methods with my hair. I’ll give you a few examples of some of my experiments.
I’ve gone two weeks without washing my hair on more than one occasion and i can feel the difference. After the first week, it seems that moisturising and sealing doesn’t work as well. My hair begins to feel really dry and straw like, as though the moisture isn’t getting through even though i’m moisturising daily. So i know that weekly washing keeps product build-up to a minimum so i get maximum penetration from my moisturising and sealing routine. My scalp becomes itchy if it’s not washed weekly too. I also find that my hair needs the weekly conditioning to maintain it’s optimum softness and manageability.
I’ve also tried finger detangling exclusively for 3 weeks. I keep reading how finger detangling is ‘the best way’ to detangle your hair and so i thought i’d give it a try. I don’t use combs or tools to style my hair during the week and only fully detangle on wash days with conditioner and the Tangle Teezer. For those three weeks i washed my hair weekly and used no other detangling tools apart from my fingers. To detangle i sprayed my dry hair with my Detangling Spray (coming soon) and gently separated my strands before stepping in the shower to wash it, and again detangling with conditioner during washing. I thought i was doing a great job until the third week where i started to get tiny two and three strand tangles. It seems i was doing a good job removing the larger tangles but not so much the smaller ones. What i found was that i had loads of these two and three strand tangles and so was forced to bring out my detangling tools, but oh the work i had to do. It took me AGES to remove all those tiny tangles! I definitely did more damage than good with exclusive finger detangling. I personally know that detangling tools work better for me and are in better keeping with my overall lifestyle than exclusive finger detangling. I don’t have 3-4 hours to sit and pull apart every strand of hair. I have three kids!
Shampooing over Co-washing
This knowledge came about by accident. Since i’ve begun to formulate my own range, i’ve had to use my own hair to test out each product before passing them onto my panel of testers. That’s probably why i haven’t written so much about my routine in a while. It’s a bit all over the place as i test out new things. When i was developing my shampoo, i was forced to shampoo my hair weekly to test out different formulas. So for a few months i was shampooing every week, which i thought i would never do as i hate the way regular shampoos make my hair feel. I usually alternate between shampooing and co-washing. Once i was happy with my shampoo i went back to co-washing for a while only to find my scalp is no longer satisfied with it. My hair loves co-washing (can you say soft?) but my scalp does not. It does not cleanse my scalp as well as shampooing does. This also teaches me about products. Products DO make a difference. As i said, I’ve always hated the way shampoo makes my hair feel so i tend to steer clear of them. But my Aloe & Honey Conditioning Shampoo works so well for me and leaves my hair clean but soft and not stripped, that i’m pleased to shampoo my hair weekly. It’s no problem now. i co-wash only when i’m pressed for time, after intense workouts or if i need to add extra moisture mid-week in the summer months.
My Advice To You
Experiment to see what your hair likes. Try washing it weekly for one month and then fortnightly the next month and note the way your hair feels. In summer try warm water rinses/co-washes mid-week for one month and see if the extra moisture brings your hair to life or if it’s moisture overload. Try co-washing for one month and then shampooing and conditioning the next. How does your hair feel? Try moisturising and sealing daily for 2 weeks and then moisturising twice weekly (for example) for another 2 and see how your hair responds. You’re looking for happy hair (what does that actually mean?). Hair that feels soft and smooth. You’re looking for processes that bring out the best in your hair, that makes your hair easier to maintain, that minimises damage and split ends and that maintains a healthy scalp. Gradually you’ll begin to learn the processes and techniques that work best for you and your hair!
Until next time!