Hair regimen frustration!
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Is there any one out there who just cannot stick to a hair routine for more than a month?
"Oh she of many routines" but do any of them work! My journey now involves all those wonderful things that all the natural hair followers do, but in my own way that suits my hair. I have to warn you that I keep changing things I just can't keep to a single routine for longer than a month, possibly 2 if I'm lucky.
Routine 1 (now not following, this was before December 2012)
- Once a month I twist my hair in fairly small twists with a leave in conditioner, I use ‘beautiful curls leave in curl activator’ and cream at present. I have been using this product for a month or so now and it is ok. I originally bought it to use for a wash and go as I don’t have curly hair, it’s just very kinky. I thought if I used curl activators they would encourage some curls! Any way I found out it works well with twisting to keep my twists moisturised. I then seal them with shea butter. I love shea butter which is also in the leave in. It weighs my hair down, which is what I prefer. I wouldn’t recommend it if your hair is very fine and light as you might find it too heavy.
- I co-wash my hair whilst in twists every other day and twice on the weekend, but only the top of my hair gets washed I make sure I do not wash out all the conditioner, (Tresemme Naturals) I cover the bottom of the hair with cling film so as not to get the twists wet as they will get very fuzzy. I got the cling film idea from YouTuber sistawithrealhair as she uses it when she is deep conditioning her hair, she puts cling film or (saran wrap if you’re American, I think that’s how you spell it ) on her braids that she has under a wig (she has really lovely hair). If my hair is fuzzy at the top I use Eco Styler gel to smooth it down. When I have co-washed my hair I put the beautiful curls leave in curl activator on the top to condition it. I then add a hair strengthener to the whole of the twist called ‘Mane n Tail’ this Mane n Tail product does have some preservatives that are not great as I researched them, but I am ok with them for now as there are no silicones in it and it does have mostly healthy ingredients. I need lots of protein in my hair or it breaks and it has silk protein and hydrolyzed protein in it’s ingredients. I really like it at present.I do this until I feel my hair needs hennaing (greys start showing and my hair seems to break off more). Henna makes my hair a mad reddish colour covering my greys, shiny and stronger. It mimicks protein conditioning but it is soo much better. I feel without it I would have so much more breakage. Hennaing is a constant for me, once every 2-3 months.
Routine 2 Tweaking this for routine 3
- I put my twists in with shea butter.
- I wash my hair in my twists with a shampoo, at present I'm using clarifying sulfate free shampoo (Giovannis Clarifying shampoo)
- I deep condition with a conditioning mask, which has no protein in it as I feel I have overused protein this month, I keep this in for 1 hour (Vatika mask from a stash in my product junkie days) then rinsed all of this out.
- I blot dry with a cotton t shirt, I spray watered down Tresemme conditioner or Honeysuckle Rose conditioner with jojoba oil, on the twists then use shea butter to seal.
- I then put the hair into 2 sections, I corn row the twists together until dry usually overnight, which gives a nice curl. I then pin the twists back and wear them down and out.
- I try to co-wash the twists (the whole twist) every other day. I don't put cling film on now, only if I think I want extra moisture and the hair feels dry.
- I then spray them every day regardless, with the Honeysuckle Rose conditioner mix and seal with shea butter.
- I now have added a conditioner especially formulated for the scalp, on my scalp, using a spray bottle and adding water to it to water it down. (Giovannis wellness system conditioner)
- After I spray the scalp with the conditioner I use a pipette and drop oil onto the scalp of Rosemary essential oil being the most important and any oil mixture of olive oil, castor oil or avocado oil or jojoba oil.
- I will do the same steps above for the next few weeks. I have been experiencing more breakage than usual so I might henna my hair soon.
I managed to last 7 weeks with my routine, yeh a record for me! Now I think my hair grew but I had so much shedding and breakage I might not have retained much of that. I detangled with my fingers when I took out the twists (having washed and conditioned it, I even hennaed it) I still experienced much breakage I will add a photo. I think it could have been the fact that I kept co-washing, I think it just gets really matted and tangled even in the twistst. it's a hard habit to break as I like to be clean all over so I feel I must wash my hair constantly. OCD:-(
Routine 3 Currently doing
I've copied and pasted the same parts of my regimen as above and added new things. I will make these bold for you to see quickly.
- I washed my hair in my twists using clarifying sulfate free shampoo (Giovannis Clarifying shampoo)
- I deep conditioned with a conditioning mask, this time I also used henna and did alot of conditioning with coconut oil and other conditioners to make sure it is moisturised after the henna especially or it ends up very dry, I used to have that problem with henna but it's no problem now.
- After all my conditioning I untwisted my twists and finger detangled. My hair came out in shed loads! I was really upset :-(
- I used Giovanni direct leave in conditioner and shea butter after finger detangling.
- I stupidly used curlformers for the first time, horrendous, took ages and they were torturerous to sleep in. It came out really horrible I think I should not have used the honeysuckle Rose spray mix with the Giovanni leave in conditioner. The white residue from the conditioners stayed in and the curls were not defined.
- Round 2 I caved in and blow dried (I was trying not to use heat) it and put it into twists I was desperate not to look too unpresentable for church the next day!
- After church I then put it into my beloved twists using shea butter and will now keep them in for 1 month again.This is what my hair looked like after all the above hard work! Ah well looks the same length as usual!
Maintenance whilst in twists to be kept in for a month
- with my hair in twists as seen in above photo I put this into 2 sections and just twist the twists together and pin them around the head. (Easier than putting cling film on!)
- I will put shea butter on the twists each day or as needed if they feel dry. (I am able to go a day or 2 without adding shea butter)
- I will only wash the top of the hair at the scalp each weekend, I will no longer co wash every other day and will do this for a month. (This will be really hard for me not sure I will keep to this but I need to see if it's making my hair break and tangle)
- I will wash all the hair from the scalp to the ends once a week on the weekend to try and keep the twists looking neat and not too frizzy for as long as I can.
- Every day I will add a conditioner especially formulated for the scalp, on my scalp, using a spray bottle and adding water to it to water it down. (Giovannis wellness system conditioner)
- After I spray the scalp with the conditioner I use a pipette and drop oil onto the scalp of Vatika oil, the one with henna and amla and coconut oil in it.
Taking out after a month (a week to go)
- When I take the twists out this time I will wash the hair with the sulfate free shampoo, deep condition with Aubrey glycogen protein (as I can't afford henna right now). I'll co-wash with Tressemme Naturals then use my vatika hair mask for an hour or so. I will wash this out and spray with my Mane n Tail hair strengthener (this hopefully will stop so much shedding and breakage) then coat it with coconut oil. When it is dry I will add a little more coconut oil, finally I will untwist and finger detangle, yep this sounds like it will take forever but I don't want to loose as much hair as the last time. If I am very careful I might be ok! If it detangles well I will possibly just twist it up again. If there is alot of breakage and tangling I will blow dry, I find it tangles terribly when I'm trying to detangle as my hair meshes up for fun it sounds counterproductive to blow dry it but I will loose less hair this way believe me from experience. If I use the tension method to blow dry as opposed to the comb tension method I would hope the strands will be straighter and not mesh, therefore not tangle as much if at all. I'm not looking to have the hair straight just to stop my kinks meshing.
- Finally I will twist it up again and wait another month and I'm hoping I will get a little growth at least as my hair does not grow really fast. Any growth is better than none. I learnt this from Longhairdontcare (my favourite YouTuber)
- You will notice I don't trim, this is something I need to address, or at least dust my ends I just can't find the time. But this could be causing my breakage as I feel I do most of the recommendations for healthy hair. Woud you agree?
Taken hair out of twists March 25th
I was trying to keep my hair in twists for another month but It was matting and I recently read that your hair tangles more if you keep a protective style in for too long. I have to agree with this as I loose the most of my hair when I keep it in too long.
Regimen 100......! Joking aside it probably is. I realise there's going to be too much scrolling if I document each regimen I try, so I'll just say the things that did or didn't work. This time I did not cowash every other day but this seemed to make no difference as it still tangled and broke off. I took the hair out before I washed this time but this made no difference and I won't try this again I will always wash my hair in the style before I take it out. I know you're thinking it will have bits of lint and so on but I don't have that problem and for the future I will cowash every other day again. I will start to add a creamier conditioner and use the L.O.C. method bought to my attention by MsRosieVelt (YouTube) basically you moisturise your hair with Liquid, could be water then add an Oil of your choice and lastly use Cream a creamy conditioner or heavy butter. I will wear it in bigger twists and then deep condition on the weekend. I feel I need to keep on top of the tangles and this needs to be done on a weekly basis. I also need to keep it stretched out because it will stop it meshing so much. I'm trying to use the no heat stretching method though I have to confess my hair tangles so much, to stretch it I used the blow dryer (I hang my head in shame).
If you've scrolled down this far thank you! I will try not to be so long winded. I will use the strategy now of stretching the hair using bantu knots as I find them really easy to do, they don't hurt my head as it is very tender and if I use banding I get headache within a few minutes of banding. I will experiment to see which is more effective though. I will also detangle with my fingers on dry oiled hair twice a week as I find it is 10 times harder to detangle if I leave it too long. I will still co-wash regularly in between doing these new things. These are my corrective measures for now, I will keep you posted to see if they are a help. I will pop back each time I have any worthwhile results.
I will leave the old regimens on display rather than just delete them as someone might find them useful and they might actually work for your hair type, or there might be something here you think you would like to give a try, I'm just having trouble with breakage due I think to using too much protein previously.
I will add a glossary of the terms I am using soon, as a separate page, as you might think what on earth am I talking about if you are new to the natural hair world! I will also add a product list if you want to purchase products I have mentioned.
So that I can have company on my hair journey please let me know if you have a successful hair regimen or you're like me tweaking previous regimens. Or if you are at the same point as me and still searching for tips to enable you to have healthy hair growth and find that perfect regimen for your hair type.
Post your comments in the comments box and I will reply if you need to ask anything or if you'd just like to say hello!
Please comment on what you think of my regimens, be kind! Let me know your honest thoughts as I can't seem to stay rigidly to anything I do for my hair apart from using henna. (When I can afford it!) Let me also know what your regimens are and if you are having success with them. Your comments will be much appreciated.