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Old 03-07-2009, 04:32 AM   #1
 
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Default Soften 4b hair

Shea butter is good, but is there anything else out there which is better. Just wondering if I can make the kinkier parts just a little more moisturised and softer.

Last edited by lenax7; 03-08-2009 at 12:59 PM.
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Old 03-07-2009, 08:28 AM   #2
 
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Some folks like castor oil...kinda thick so i guess just apply a little.

In my experience, straight application of oil to dry hair (even shea butter) doesn't make it moist/soft.

Oil to me doesn't represent moist/soft -case in point when I apply oil to my dry/ashy legs. It's oily but dry underneath. Oil may eventually penetrate but nothing feels like the kinda of results you get with the application of water.

No matter what oil, try spritzing your hair with a bit of water before applying the oil. The thought is that the water quenches your hair and the oil will prevent it's escape..aka..seal the water in.
Worked me for me so far and it works irregardless of which oil i used.
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Old 03-07-2009, 12:36 PM   #3
 
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Originally Posted by lenax7 View Post
Shea butter is good, but is there anything else out there which is better. I'm not saying I trying to make my hair as soft as a white person's or anything! Just wondering if I can make the kinkier parts just a little more moisturised and softer.


My eyebrows went to my hairline when I read this. Where on earth did you get the notion that caucasian/straight hair is softer than African/kinky-coily hair?? Have you touched a natural, healthy, well-conditioned 4a or 4b, head lately?? Some of the softest hair on the planet! . Okay, rant over.

Answer: frequent conditioning and deep treatments. They need not be pricey. One of my favorites is a coconut cream/yogurt/banana DT. Measures are approximate--

Tropical Traditions coconut cream concentrate (2 tbs)
extra virgin coconut oil (2 tbs)
plain, strained yogurt (I use Greek since it's already strained) - 6-8 oz
Pureed banana (I use baby food) 4-6 oz
ACV (1 tbs)

I melt the coconut cream concentrate and coconut oil together in a glass Pyrex 2-cup measuring cup (a minute in the microwave). Add the ACV, and slowly drizzle in the yogur while constantly mixing with a fork. Then the banana. You could blend but it's not necessary. This makes a smooth, mousse-like mixture.

Make sure your hair is fairly detangled and not full of knots before applying. You can pre-poo with oil to detangle or shampoo first.

I apply with fingers in small sections starting at the nape, from the root and smooth with my fingers to the ends of hair. Use generously to ensure full strand coverage. Don't use a comb or you could pull your hair out.

Cover hair with a plastic cap and sit under a heat cap for 1/2 hours. Rinse very, very thoroughly and condition/detangle with regular conditioner.

On Youtube a variation of this is called the coconut cream "relaxer". It has absolutely no relaxing or straightening properties. It is very moisturizing and softening.
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Old 03-08-2009, 04:26 AM   #4
 
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Originally Posted by lenax7 View Post
Shea butter is good, but is there anything else out there which is better. I'm not saying I trying to make my hair as soft as a white person's or anything! Just wondering if I can make the kinkier parts just a little more moisturised and softer.


My eyebrows went to my hairline when I read this. Where on earth did you get the notion that caucasian/straight hair is softer than African/kinky-coily hair?? Have you touched a natural, healthy, well-conditioned 4a or 4b, head lately?? Some of the softest hair on the planet! . Okay, rant over.
I was thinking the same thing. I have friends and family members who are Caucasian, but they don't necessarily have soft/supple hair.

OP, I've found that my hair is the softest when I spritz it daily with leave-in. I use AR's BRX spray mixed with Infusium, grapeseed oil, peppermint EO, and a spoonful of vegetable glycerine. My hair is amazingly soft with this mixture, for some reason. It's even softer when I apply that after using shea butter on my hair.

I spritz my hair daily. I've heard a lot of 4bs say that they have bouts of dry hair. I've been spritzing my hair daily from the start of my natural journey, so my hair has been consistently soft. Once, decided to just let it dry right after a really stripping shampoo, to see what it would be like when dry. UGH, I'll never do that again. I stick to spritzing with some sort of leave-in daily - almost always with the concoction that I mentioned above.

Last edited by CoilyParisienne; 03-08-2009 at 09:19 AM.
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Old 03-08-2009, 07:36 AM   #5
 
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I use a melted combination of shea butter, coconut oil and cocoa butter. Right now I'm out of the coconut oil, so I'm substituting it with extra virgin olive oil. I apply this to my hair right after washing, and before conditioning. I work it into my hair until it it very, very oily, saturating it throughout the hair, especially the ends, massaging and really working it in there. Then I apply a GENEROUS amount of conditioner, work and massage that in, really raking and smoothing it in, and then cover with a plastic bag and wrap a towel over that, for about 20 minutes or more and then rinse. It is not oily afterward. In fact, I always add a little more when twisting it up afterward, so that the hair has a little more moisture to go with the twists. When I take the twists out, it's never greasy, and always soft, and the curls are very springy. Maybe you could try that, and see if it works for you.
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Old 03-08-2009, 12:55 PM   #6
 
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What I meant was I've seen some the backlash people get when they use words like 'softer,' and I didn't want anyone giving me a lecture or anything! Like I was trying to make my hair something it wasn't It wasn't meant to offend. I also said that because I didn't want anyone thinking I didn't like my natural 4a /4b texture. I know ours can be very soft!
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Old 03-08-2009, 12:58 PM   #7
 
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Originally Posted by Suburbanbushbabe View Post
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Originally Posted by lenax7 View Post
Shea butter is good, but is there anything else out there which is better. I'm not saying I trying to make my hair as soft as a white person's or anything! Just wondering if I can make the kinkier parts just a little more moisturised and softer.


My eyebrows went to my hairline when I read this. Where on earth did you get the notion that caucasian/straight hair is softer than African/kinky-coily hair?? Have you touched a natural, healthy, well-conditioned 4a or 4b, head lately?? Some of the softest hair on the planet! . Okay, rant over.

Answer: frequent conditioning and deep treatments. They need not be pricey. One of my favorites is a coconut cream/yogurt/banana DT. Measures are approximate--

Tropical Traditions coconut cream concentrate (2 tbs)
extra virgin coconut oil (2 tbs)
plain, strained yogurt (I use Greek since it's already strained) - 6-8 oz
Pureed banana (I use baby food) 4-6 oz
ACV (1 tbs)

I melt the coconut cream concentrate and coconut oil together in a glass Pyrex 2-cup measuring cup (a minute in the microwave). Add the ACV, and slowly drizzle in the yogur while constantly mixing with a fork. Then the banana. You could blend but it's not necessary. This makes a smooth, mousse-like mixture.

Make sure your hair is fairly detangled and not full of knots before applying. You can pre-poo with oil to detangle or shampoo first.

I apply with fingers in small sections starting at the nape, from the root and smooth with my fingers to the ends of hair. Use generously to ensure full strand coverage. Don't use a comb or you could pull your hair out.

Cover hair with a plastic cap and sit under a heat cap for 1/2 hours. Rinse very, very thoroughly and condition/detangle with regular conditioner.

On Youtube a variation of this is called the coconut cream "relaxer". It has absolutely no relaxing or straightening properties. It is very moisturizing and softening.

What's ACV?
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Old 03-08-2009, 01:02 PM   #8
 
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Originally Posted by Suburbanbushbabe View Post
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Originally Posted by lenax7 View Post
Shea butter is good, but is there anything else out there which is better. I'm not saying I trying to make my hair as soft as a white person's or anything! Just wondering if I can make the kinkier parts just a little more moisturised and softer.


My eyebrows went to my hairline when I read this. Where on earth did you get the notion that caucasian/straight hair is softer than African/kinky-coily hair?? Have you touched a natural, healthy, well-conditioned 4a or 4b, head lately?? Some of the softest hair on the planet! . Okay, rant over.
I was thinking the same thing. I have friends and family members who are Caucasian, but they don't necessarily have soft/supple hair.

OP, I've found that my hair is the softest when I spritz it daily with leave-in. I use AR's BRX spray mixed with Infusium, grapeseed oil, peppermint EO, and a spoonful of vegetable glycerine. My hair is amazingly soft with this mixture, for some reason. It's even softer when I apply that after using shea butter on my hair.

I spritz my hair daily. I've heard a lot of 4bs say that they have bouts of dry hair. I've been spritzing my hair daily from the start of my natural journey, so my hair has been consistently soft. Once, decided to just let it dry right after a really stripping shampoo, to see what it would be like when dry. UGH, I'll never do that again. I stick to spritzing with some sort of leave-in daily - almost always with the concoction that I mentioned above.
I've found water makes my hair very hard, so I don't like adding a lot. The water here in England, is very hard and they add lots of stuff to it which isn't great for hair. My mum had the same problem. It turned her silky ringlets into bushy, frizzy curls!
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Old 03-08-2009, 03:37 PM   #9
 
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I've found that a spray like Oyin Handmade's Juices & Berries sprayed on dry hair really makes it soft. I had my doubts at first because I suffer from dry hair. But when I tried it, it was WONDERFUL!!! Soft, moisturized and great smelling hair. You can use it after you shampoo/co-wash on wet hair and you can use it as a daily spritz. HTH
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Old 03-08-2009, 03:43 PM   #10
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lenax7
've found water makes my hair very hard, so I don't like adding a lot. The water here in England, is very hard and they add lots of stuff to it which isn't great for hair. My mum had the same problem. It turned her silky ringlets into bushy, frizzy curls!
Ahah! The hard water could be your problem. Have you thought about a shower filter or water filter?

ACV= apple cider vinegar
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Old 03-09-2009, 12:07 AM   #11
 
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What I meant was I've seen some the backlash people get when they use words like 'softer,' and I didn't want anyone giving me a lecture or anything! Like I was trying to make my hair something it wasn't It wasn't meant to offend. I also said that because I didn't want anyone thinking I didn't like my natural 4a /4b texture. I know ours can be very soft!
I totally understand what you mean...I've seen those sorts of lectures you're wary of on forums, too. It can be daunting!

I had the same hard water problem in France and I used ACV/Spring Water for my shampoos, sponge applying it to my hair. The ACV helped combat the hard water and my hair felt super soft. I don't know if this would help, but you may want to consider it if you haven't already.
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Old 03-09-2009, 12:10 AM   #12
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lenax7
've found water makes my hair very hard, so I don't like adding a lot. The water here in England, is very hard and they add lots of stuff to it which isn't great for hair. My mum had the same problem. It turned her silky ringlets into bushy, frizzy curls!
Ahah! The hard water could be your problem. Have you thought about a shower filter or water filter?

ACV= apple cider vinegar
Oh yes, filters are really helpful, too, in hard water regions! I don't know if they remove the "calcaire" (sorry, I don't know the English word for that...can someone let me know? I can't find it in the dictionary!), but I believe there are some that can. I just had a hard time finding one that was easy to install in France.

In the US, they can just screw them on to the shower heads! If you can do that in the UK, too, you may want to try it out.
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Old 03-09-2009, 08:30 AM   #13
 
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Thumbs up Glycerin and Water Spritz

Many people have commented on how soft my hair is. 100% Vegetable Glycerin and Water spritz works great for me. I wash my hair once every two weeks. I try to use a good conditioner like, Kinky Curly Knot Today or Ganier Fructis Hydra Curls, which really helps maintain my moisture levels. If I wear my hair out in a curly fro with a headband, like today, I spray my hair until it is slightly damp with a 50% water / 50% glycerin spritz that I premixed and put in a water bottle. Then I put large two strand twist (about 12 total) all over my head and sleep in a satin cap. When I wake up, I fluff, and my hair is like butter. Really simple. I linked the YouTube video on how I dress my hair at night.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iANRg5XA6m8
If I wear my hair in two strand twists then I spray them every couple of days to prevent drying and breakage.
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Old 03-10-2009, 04:26 AM   #14
 
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What I meant was I've seen some the backlash people get when they use words like 'softer,' and I didn't want anyone giving me a lecture or anything! Like I was trying to make my hair something it wasn't It wasn't meant to offend. I also said that because I didn't want anyone thinking I didn't like my natural 4a /4b texture. I know ours can be very soft!
I totally understand what you mean...I've seen those sorts of lectures you're wary of on forums, too. It can be daunting!

I had the same hard water problem in France and I used ACV/Spring Water for my shampoos, sponge applying it to my hair. The ACV helped combat the hard water and my hair felt super soft. I don't know if this would help, but you may want to consider it if you haven't already.
I found the lectures very strange because black people in england don't do that. We don't have debates about things like how natural is natural and things like that, so I assume it is an american thing, but I don't know! We don't really care! The only time someone said anything about going natural to me was when I was at the hairdresser and she asked if I'd forgotten to relax my hair. I told her no and that I liked my hair this way. She asked me how old I was and when I told her, she said I was at the 'right age' to get it relaxed. When I told her I liked my hair this way, she gave me such a strange look! AS long as your hair looks nice, black people over here don't say anything really about it being natural. I think if you look bad, they will start to talk about it.

What does the ACV do - is it a clarifyer? I've started washing my hair with only conditionner, but I don't think the one I have chosen "curls coconut sblime conditioner" is very good because it has alochol in it and my hair hates that!. I think the word you were looking for is 'calcium.'
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Old 03-12-2009, 01:48 AM   #15
 
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What I meant was I've seen some the backlash people get when they use words like 'softer,' and I didn't want anyone giving me a lecture or anything! Like I was trying to make my hair something it wasn't It wasn't meant to offend. I also said that because I didn't want anyone thinking I didn't like my natural 4a /4b texture. I know ours can be very soft!
I totally understand what you mean...I've seen those sorts of lectures you're wary of on forums, too. It can be daunting!

I had the same hard water problem in France and I used ACV/Spring Water for my shampoos, sponge applying it to my hair. The ACV helped combat the hard water and my hair felt super soft. I don't know if this would help, but you may want to consider it if you haven't already.
I found the lectures very strange because black people in england don't do that. We don't have debates about things like how natural is natural and things like that, so I assume it is an american thing, but I don't know! We don't really care! The only time someone said anything about going natural to me was when I was at the hairdresser and she asked if I'd forgotten to relax my hair. I told her no and that I liked my hair this way. She asked me how old I was and when I told her, she said I was at the 'right age' to get it relaxed. When I told her I liked my hair this way, she gave me such a strange look! AS long as your hair looks nice, black people over here don't say anything really about it being natural. I think if you look bad, they will start to talk about it.

What does the ACV do - is it a clarifyer? I've started washing my hair with only conditionner, but I don't think the one I have chosen "curls coconut sblime conditioner" is very good because it has alochol in it and my hair hates that!. I think the word you were looking for is 'calcium.'
Yes, you're right - it is a particularly American thing. I'm not subject to those sorts of debates in France (or Germany), but whenever I use American forums or when I'm in the US, I see those sorts of debates/confrontations. It's kind of strange/interesting how differently people interact according to where they're from and their cultural perspective...

Yes, the ACV will clarify and remove the calcaire deposits that build up on the hair (I don't know remember the English word for it, but it's the white stuff that builds up on the water faucet, etc). That build up will harden the hair if not removed, so it's important to get rid of it. I also use spring water, since it tends to be softer than the standard water in France. If you're in a hard water region in the UK, then I'd definitely try using that method. My hair was never more supple than when I used this method.
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Old 03-23-2009, 01:54 PM   #16
 
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I've been searching seemingly forever for a product to soften my curls. I finally tried Giovanni's Direct Leave-In and I think I like it very much. It's been 2 days but so far when I apply it to my dry hair then seal with one of my oils (castor, grapeseed, etc) I get nice, soft curls. My search may be over! I ordered it from Vitacost and the price is fantastic.


Shea butter made my hair hard and crunchy. I even tried mixing it with other products. My hair can't handle it, unfortunately.
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Old 04-11-2009, 09:44 AM   #17
 
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try castor oil. Qhemet Amla and Olive oil heavy cream works for some people. HTH
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Old 04-11-2009, 04:02 PM   #18
 
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try castor oil. Qhemet Amla and Olive oil heavy cream works for some people. HTH
Just brought some - can't wait to try it!
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Old 04-11-2009, 04:12 PM   #19
 
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try castor oil. Qhemet Amla and Olive oil heavy cream works for some people. HTH
Just brought some - can't wait to try it!
I recently tried a baking soda wash for the first time. The result was soft and clean hair, free of build-up. I've read that you can't do it often because it will dry out your hair. But in an area with hard water, you may be able to do it, say, twice per month? Experiment and see.
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Old 04-11-2009, 08:02 PM   #20
 
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"Calcaire" = Limestone.
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