how to wash natural hair

Going natural is an exciting transition. With lots of useful information now online, many women are taking their hair care into their own hands. If you are new to natural hair care and still not quite sure on where to begin, you have come to the right place. In this post, I’m letting you in on a very important step to take when you begin your natural hair journey: build a hair regimen. Simply put, a natural hair regimen is a set of hair techniques consistently followed in order to nurture the health of your hair. It may also include a set of products used as well as the order and frequency in which they are applied to your hair.  

It is best to build your hair regimen around your hair’s unique needs. If your hair is exceptionally dry, you may need to focus on adding moisture, while if you're an athlete and sweat heavily every day, you may want to emphasize the cleansing aspects of your hair regimen. Remember, a hair regimen is built in response to your hair's needs, so it may not always remain the same. Nonetheless these four anchor points should ground your hair regimen over time.

1. Pre-poo

You may choose to apply an oil along the length of your hair to prevent excessive cleansing during the washing process. This step is often referred to as pre-shampooing. Shampoos, particularly those with sulfates, can often strip our hair of natural oils, so pre-pooing adds an extra layer of protection against loss. To pre-poo your hair, apply a light oil such as jojoba oil to the length of your dry hair. Leave the oil on for at least 30 minutes and then proceed to cleanse your hair.

2. Cleanse

There are different levels to which hair can be cleansed. Clarifying products are the most astringent while bentonite clay and oat water may be gentler. Either way, over the course of your wash day regimen, feel free to use some type of cleanser to rid your hair of weekly buildup. Our community's favorite cleansers are SheaMoisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen, Grow & Restore Shampoo, Obia Naturals Coconut Shea Shampoo Bar. Some of our Editors' favorites are Elucence Volume Clarifying Shampoo and Alikay Naturals Moisturizing Black Soap Shampoo, and Briogeo Rosarco Reparative Shampoo

3. Condition

Conditioning your hair is one of the most important steps you can take to ensure the health of your hair. Conditioning your hair using a moisturizing deep conditioner adds extra moisture and slip to your strands and prevents breakage in the long run. In addition, protein deep conditioners work to strengthen our strands say after coloring or applying heat to our hair. Again, feel free to switch between the two depending on your hair’s unique needs. A couple of our favorite deep conditioners are SheaMoisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen, Grow & Restore Treatment Masque and the Alikay Naturals Honey and Sage Deep Conditioner

4. Seal

In order to prevent moisture loss, apply sealants. You may use a light oil, heavy oil, or even a whipped butter. You want to use a product that is able to coat your strands with emollients in order to slow down moisture loss. After all, the purpose of a regimen is to keep our hair moisturised. Steps 1, 2, & 3 above would be pointless if our hair dry.

Lastly, a regimen is a personally tailored process that may take several months to get it right, so keep trying. Keep doing your research and learning from the wider community of curl sistas. You can always come back to this list to make sure you have your foundational pointers in place.