Juicy ringlets, perfect spirals, manageable mane, silky tresses ... these words have never been used to describe my naturally dry and coarse head of super dense, high porosity 3c/4a curls and coils.
However, something amazing has happened during my first official winter living in New York City. My hair is actually the silkiest it has ever been. I'm not mad about it, either. I love my fluffy 'fro every day of the week and then some, have been since 2012. But this weather has shown me something I haven't witnessed since I was living in Washington, D.C. years ago. There's something about brisk, frigid yet humid air that lets my hair thrive in its element. I have pinpointed some reasons why this could be so.
I don't cowash as often.
I have limited my co-washing to just a couple times a week, if that. Frequent shampooing or co-washing can lead to a scalp that is stripped of necessary sebum which leaves the length of the hair dull and lifeless, so instead, I have been practicing the method of water washing since New York tap water is so amazing on its own and it's been working, too.
I limit each wash and go to 2 stylers or less.
It depends on how I want to style my hair -- some days I care more about definition, and some days I want more volume. Usually, a light and milky leave-inpaired with a curl refresher spray or a creme and an alcohol-free gel combo does the trick for a fluffy, silky wash-and-go.
My favorite cocktail right now is the SheaMoisture 100% Virgin Coconut Oil Daily Hydration Leave-in, Oyin Handmade Frank Juice as a curl refresher, Controlled Chaos Curl Creme for my creme, and Camille Rose Naturals Aloe Whipped Butter Gel.
I am loyal with the scalp massage.
By giving myself a routine scalp massage with my favorite carrier and essential oil blend in a bottle, I am:
- increasing proper blood flow to the hair follicles
- nourishing my scalp
- strengthening my roots
- reducing stress
Both in and out of the shower, using the pads of my fingers against my roots in a circular motion for a couple of minutes helps me to relax and not forget to take care of the important part of my head that I cannot see.
I detangle and style gently.
This season, I haven't been using any brushes or combs to detangle or style, just my fingers. Since my natural hair is the softest it has ever been, I want to maximize on that by encouraging more definition and letting the healthy sign of shrinkage do it's thing. Harsh manipulation was something I wasn't particularly mindful of avoiding during the summer and fall, which is why I am taking gentler styling more seriously during the brutal climate. Even my ponytails and pineapples get extra TLC at night with an "ouchless" hair tie and a silk bonnet.
Which season does your natural hair thrive in?
And does humidity or dry air give you your best hair days? Let us know in the comment section below.
Read one of my latest, How I am Preventing Dry Curly Hair This Season