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Over the past week, I was experiencing a bit of a hair melt down.
But I'm jumping ahead.
First, I should explain: I've worn my curls au natural for almost 5 years now. They started as a buzz cut and sprouted eagerly into shiny bouncy corkscrews all over my head. And during this honeymoon period, I fantasized about Chaka Khan curls cascading down my back - looking like this majestic curl goddess. All I had to do was simply wait, right?
And given the fact that I have superhuman fast-growing hair, waiting would be easy! Yeah.
Well after five years, I've cut my hair so many times, clearly I couldn't "just wait". Not because of any lack of patience I may have had but because the stages to get to long curls is a nightmare people! Sure, 4-inch curls are a cinch but anything past 8 inches is agonizing. Every time my hair would enter that danger-zone length, I would go insane from the maintenance and cut it off.
But! Last week, when my left eye began to twitch and my teeth started clenching at the thought of finger combing my neglected overgrown locks, instead of taking to the scissors like usual, I turned to the internet to find a simple, no-nonsense wash and go for longer natural curls (because I refuse to style my hair any other way - I mean, I have places to be you know?)
After hours of searching I finally stumbled across a hair blog that gave me a refreshed taste to go forward: "Beads Braids & Beyond".
Of course it would be a children's natural hair care blog that would give me the simplicity I need to not give up. Of course it would.
Anyway, it was lil Miss A's hair care routine that got me to go to Target and finally get some new products to play with. When I saw this cute little girl, I was like Chaka who? This girl's hair is fierce.
Little did I know, just playing around ended up changing my mind completely about hair products.
They're totally amazing and I totally need them!!
This is a wash and go.... A wash and go, ladies! Scroll down to get the deets on this miracle - needless to say, I'm loving my longer curls and I aint choppin' em off.
clockwise: Shea Moisture Curling Gel Souffle / professional blowdryer / Dove Intensive Repair Conditoner / Denman brush / Kinky Curly Knot Today Natural Leave In/Detangler
The first thing that Miss A's mom discusses is her use of conditioner. She uses lots and lots and lots of it!
So I did too. In fact, I filled my whole palm and that alone made a noticeable difference when finger combing in shower. It really is amazing how much moisture my hair type needs.
So onto the steps:
I got in the shower the next morning like usual. I wet my hair completely. Then I poured a palm size of Dove conditioner into my hand and glazed it over my hair, spreading it in thoroughly.
Miss A's mom says she uses the cheap stuff. Because with the huge amounts of conditioner that Miss A's hair needs for each wash, she doesn't want to break the bank with the expensive conditioners.
It all gets rinsed out anyway. This big size Dove conditioner was $5.
After the conditioner had been worked into my hair I began finger combing and detangling. Working from the left side of my head to the right.
After my hair was thoroughly detangled with my fingers, I put a golf ball size of conditioner into my hair and began detangling my hair with my Denman brush. From bottom to top, starting on the left side of my head all the way to the right. I hadn't done this in years. Yikes! That's when my curls began clumping up and springing back to life like a magic trick.
With my hair completely detangled, I rinsed out all of the conditioner being careful not to agitate my curls. I finger combed the conditioner out, avoiding causing new tangles.
Leave In Conditioner
Stepping out of the shower, I did not wring out my hair or pat it with a towel or touch it at all. I allowed it to drip wet from the rinse without any kind of drying. I immediately poured a golf ball size amount of Kinky-Curly Knot Today Leave In into my hands and worked it into my hair, adding a little more to my ends.
At this point, my corkscrew curls have already formed all over like I had twisted them individually. But I hadn't! And I notice my hair has an incredible gloss! Not a wet look but a healthy clean gloss. Something I'd always had trouble achieving before without the use of a shine serum. So glossy!!
With the leave in conditioner fully absorbed into my dripping wet hair, I take a few paper towels and squeeze the excess water from my ends. Then I carefully part my hair (making sure to not snap any tangles) and place the hair in the style I want to wear. So for me, bangs in front with a top middle part.
Then I dip two fingers into my Shea Moisture Curling Gel Souffle and finger comb it into each section of my style. Re-dipping for each section. This will set my style and promote less shrinkage. I didn't notice less shrinkage but I did notice my curls didn't frizz later that day.
Last, I turn on my blowdryer to a medium strength with a heat setting of cool. Pointing it down while placing it over my head, the air blows my hair down, keeping it in place and setting it in the style I created. At the beginning of blowdrying, I don't want to agitate the curls, I just want to dry them a bit so that I don't have wet hair. I pull the curls down and extend them out so that they'll dry in a lengthened state.
Then after my hair is somewhat dry, I turn my heat setting to warm and point it upwards while placing it at chin level so that it blows my hair up. I like volume.
From this angle it also dries my roots and agitates the curls to pop more.
Miss A's mom doesn't use heat at all. I do because I can't stand having wet or even damp hair when I go out. With care, little damage can come of blowdrying so I'm not worried.
So there you have it! My new and improved wash and go routine for better hair and a saner me. Hopefully it is easy to follow and do with your own hair potions.
I used Kinky-Curly because that's what Miss A's mom uses and I liked the idea of using a leave in for once since my hair dries out so easily. I love it. I decided to use Shea Moisture because it happened to be on sale. I would have bought the equivalent of Kinky-Curly styling gel but it was $20. Maybe I'll try it in the future if it ever goes on sale.
If you have any questions, email me or leave a comment, I'd love to chat :)
And catch up with me again on Friday!
I'm excited to show you a completely new outfit for a change!