Synthetic vs. natural
A color treatment can be synthetic or natural. Obviously the synthetic types have much more damage-potential than natural coloring agents.
The range of synthetic dyes
A permanent hair color uses hydrogen peroxide and/or an ammonia-based product to lift the hair cuticle and allow the dye to penetrate into the hair fibre. By lifting the hair's cuticle some protein and moisture is lost.
As hair colors become less permanent: semi-permanent to demi-permanent to temporary the strength and toxicity of the dye becomes lower. The least toxic synthetic coloring agent is the temporary type; this is because the molecules in the dye are too large to penetrate the hair cuticle - basically, the dye doesn't mess with hair natural structure.
There are three main types you can use: Henna, Cassia and Indigo
I thought it was just okay. So far the best conditioner I have used on my hair is the LUV naturals brand of conditioner but I can't afford to keep importing it to the UK so I need to find an alternative.
Too expensive. I bought the 2 oz bottle to try it out and used the whole bottle in one go. That's £4.50 (or $7.20) in one session. Buying the 16 oz would only reduce my per session cost to £2.80 ($4.50) which is still pricey considering the Luv Natural conditioner which my hair prefers is $13 or $1.60 per session. Postage is excluded in these prices because it varies so much for different people.
This didn't feel adequately slippy on my hair. Also make sure you rinse out ALL your shampoo before application because it feel even less slippy when there's a bit of shampoo in the hair. I noticed this because one half of my head was well rinsed out and the other wasn't.
It didn't retangle my hair, so that's a plus.
After my hair dried it felt parched and wiry.
At that price, my hair would have to be having a passionate love affair with the deep conditioner for me to repurchase so, on that basis, I won't be getting this again!
Firstly don't worry if your daughter hasn't reached the age of two yet; baby hair can be very fragile and all the tossing and turning that babies do can have an impact on the growth and thickness of your baby's hair.
If the child is older than two and you think the hair isn't growing well, then the issue could be one of the below:
If you or your husband's family have slow hair growth then your child may have inherited the trait. Some people's hair grows faster than others.
2. Split ends
There is no scientific proof that removing splitting ends "makes" hair grow faster but there is a lot of empirical evidence to suggest this is true. If the ends are looking rough, uneven or messy cut them off!
3. Not getting relevant nutrients
A lot of protein, iron and zinc is needed for healthy hair grow. Ensure your child is getting plenty of fruit, vegetables, grains and some meat. Obviously, if you're vegetarian there will be no meat in your diet so a lot of protein will come from beans and other grains. Here are specific foods you should be looking to give your children more of for good hair growth:
The thyroid gland in the neck controls many of the body's metabolic function by realeasing the thyroid hormone, thyroxine. You have an underactive thyroid (or Hypothyroidism) if you produce too little of this hormone. One of the symptoms is poor hair growth, hair loss and/or thinning.
5. A fungal infection
A fungal infection such as ringworm (not caused by a worm despite the name) can cause hair loss or lack of hair growth. If you see a doctor they can have the child tested for this condition and prescribe an appropriate antifungal cream. The doctor can also diagnose other scalp conditions such as scalp psoriasis and seborrhoeic dermatitis.
6. Styling and regimen
Excessive brushing, combing and styling could lead to breakage. Try styling the hair in such a way that it doesn't need to be changed every day; wash and condition every 7 to 10 days.
When you style the hair massage the scalp for a few minutes to stimulate the roots and go for a style that doesn't cause stress around the edges.
You might also like: Tips on Caring for your Kids' Natural Hair
Get your FREE ebook on How To Grow Long, Healthy Natural Kinky or Curly Hair.
What Causes Hair Not To Grow In a Toddler?
How To Make Your Child’s Hair Grow Faster
Hypothyroidism and Hair
This is a common problem!
You want or need to get your hair done and you just don't think a salon that deals with relaxed hair can do good by your hair.
Natural hair has different needs and most natural girls take a special interest in how their hair is handled: if you're a no heat girl or a wide-tooth comb only girl, the stylist has to respect that!
Firstly, try to get a recommendation from a trusted friend or friends. Even then, read reviews of that salon to see what experience others have had. Reviews are so insightful!
To help you find a natural hair salon, click one of the below:
There is no hard and fast rule for when you should trim your hair. I would do it when:
1. When it needs it
You know your ends need a trim when they are looking worn out, dry and frizzy. If you don't get rid of those ends they will end up breaking on their own and this normally leads to more split ends, unkempt looking hair, tangling and even more breakage!
2. To keep it neat
If your hair isn't broken or has split end but it looks uneven and messy give it a trim.
3. To stop the ends from getting damaged
I made the mistake of over trimming! Every time I washed my hair, I was cutting the ends off because they were tangled and hadn't been combed through properly. This is not necessary at all; use a good quality detangler. Also, what would be better is "dusting" the ends.
"Dusting" involves trimming so little hair that it looks like dust. This technique helps to stop split ends from happening at all. You can dust every 6 to 8 weeks. Seriously, snip off a tiny, inconsequential amount.
That said, if your ends are damaged you cannot run away from giving your hair a proper trim!
So you want more strands of hair on your head. The truth is, the density or thickness of hair is mostly predetermined, however, you could have thinner hair than you should have due to the way you 'treat' you hair. I myself had thinning hair in early 2011 and by taking the below simple steps I have recovered my natural health and thickness:
1. Your hair is what you eat
You can actually improve the quality of new growth by eating a better diet. Your diet should be rich in proteins, iron and vitamin B. Good foods for hair included lean meats, leafy green vegetables, egg yolks, fruits and vegetables.
2. Get a vitamin supplement
There are vitamins marketed specifically for skin, nails and hair. Before you get one, check that it has three times more zinc than iron for optimal iron absorption. Supplements will not make up for a good diet but if you are lacking in something, they'll make up for that deficit.
3. Use essential oils
I swear this works. Massage a high quality, low density carrier oil mixed with the best essential oils into your scalp.
The best carrier oils for scalp application are jojoba oil, argan oil and avocado oil. All three of these are present in the 6 best oils pack. Castor oil, also included in the pack, is also reputed to improve hair thickness.
The best essential oils for improving hair thickness are: rosemary and ylang ylang.
Don't feel like mixing your own oil, that's okay, get a bottle of Neno Natural's Hair Growth Stimulator. It is optimally blended improve hair growth and thickness.
4. Stop smoking
Nicotine reduces nutrient absorption and smoking can cause premature hair loss.
5. Sleep more and reduce stress levels
Stress can cause a massive increase in hair shedding so you appear to have a lower density of hair. Lack of sleep can also lead to increased stress and hair loss.
6. Use a microfiber towel
When you dry your hair avoid rubbing. Just squeeze and pat dry using a microfiber towel.
7. Sleep with a satin cap
Have you seen how babies frequently have no hair around the edges. Because they have very fine and soft hair their tossing and turning impacts hair growth on the sides. the same thing could be happening to you on a small scale. Sleep with a Satin cap over your head and/or a satin pillowcase.
8. Improve your hair management
Get your FREE ebook on How To Grow Long, Healthy Natural Kinky or Curly Hair.
You might also like:
Iron and hair growth - critical must-know information
6 best oils for growing and nourishing hair!
How less sleep = less hair! Does hair grow faster during sleep?
How to Get Thick Hair
How to Improve Hair Growth & Thickness
What is Hair Loss in Women?
Hello this is Ivy of Natural Rock' N,
Using proven family recipes; our aim is to give you healthy potions of natural ingredients for your hair and body. Great to meet you! I would like to introduce to you my featured products exclusively for the readers of Neno Natural!
First up we have Mango Street Hair Butter.
This is a jar full of mango bliss. Mango has been used by rainforest tribes for food and body, they knew the secret!
Mango gives the gifts of:
All this adds up to growth promotion! Mango Street contains a healthy dose of Macadamia oil. This wonder oil is great because it's properties are similar to your own naturally occurring scalp oil sebum - a sheen booster!
Mango street is blended with lavender and grapefruit essential oils for a great fragrance that has wonderful feedback love. Free of dyes and chemicals you're going to love this one too! Works very well as a sealant with a hint of water.
Next for you I have Orange Krush Honey Butter Lotion.
This is a new wonderful lotion blend that's doing very well with Natural Rock' N lovers. Made of a goat's milk and honey base that's really good for your skin. Goat's milk is actually similar to our skins natural pH.
Goat's milk is mild, reducing inflammation and contains Alpha hydroxyl. We take those benefits and then add pure orange butter!
And you will love the smell! Reminiscent of fresh orange with a hint of spice, some have said it smells like a soda pop. The great unisex scent is a crowd pleaser; it's popular with kids too!
Both Mango Street and Orange Krush are best sellers for Natural Rock' N . Many have loved these simplified products already because they work! If you want to try these two hair-loving products or just want to drop by for news and new products, we're here:
On Twitter and Facebook
Open to UK & US residents. 2 winners will be randomly picked next week Wednesday/Thursday.
COMPETITION NOW CLOSED
Entry question was: "Now that you are a natural, how do you view water on your hair? how do you incorporate water into your natural hair life?"
Braids and cornrows are a protective style.
Braid care starts before you actually go for your appointment. The day before, wash and deep condition your hair so that it's at its strongest before you braid your hair. Afterwards the following tips will help you to minimise breakage and other forms of damage.
1. Take care of the edges
For the first seven days after you've put the braids in you need to ensure that the edges that were more than likely pulled tightly are always moisturised. This will ease the pressure and will stop the roots from being uprooted.
I apply oil around the edges twice a day initially because my scalp is sensitive and usually breaks out in little bumps.
2. Ensure your scalp never gets dry
The scalp is carrying an extra load so to ease its burden ensure it is clean and never dry. Some people will naturally produce enough oil so they don't need to add extra but none the less I like to spray Neno Natural's Hair Growth Stimulator so that I get the benefits of the essential oils.
3. Wash every 7 to 10 days
Not washing and conditioning your hair when it's in braids will lead to a lot more breakage when you take them out. Natural hair continues to crave moisture whether it's in braids or not.
4. Moisturise the braid as though it were your hair
There are two ways to do this:
a) Spritz with water regularly just like you would when you have your hair out.
b) Rub a shea butter onto the braids every few days.
Overall, the more you think of the braids as your hair the better your own hair will fare.
I got asked this question today.
The answer for this is simple, you can't.
When hair is relaxed the chemical bonds in hair are permanently dissolved. This process cannot be reversed in order to become natural. If you want to go natural you can either transition, big chop or do the stepped chop.
Some hair types don't take very well to relaxer so they never really straighten properly. I have been told by at least one person that because of this when they went natural they didn't have to transition in any way; this was only because the hair never straightened in the first place not because the relaxer process had been reversed.
You might also like:
How to Go Natural: Big Chop vs. Transitioning. #BlackHair
An Alternative to the Big Chop: The Stepped Chop!
If there's one thing that's frequently discussed in natural hair forums it's the fact that sulfates in shampoo dry out hair. Sulfates can also dry out and irritate the scalp. If you look at a shampoo bottle as a natural haired girl you don't want to see:
I knew what I didn't want as the detergent in my shampoo but I didn't know what I DID want? I would pick up a bottle and if the above-mentioned ingredients weren't there I'd take it.
The problem with this strategy is that, at times, manufacturers combine several 'gentle' hair detergents and in combination the shampoo dries hair out more than a regular sulfate shampoo.
So, which detergents are gentler?
A much gentler and less irritating cleansing agent is Cocamidopropyl Betaine. This is an organically derived ingredients which is partly derived from coconut oil.
Personally, I use Kinky Curly Come Clean. Cocamidopropyl Betaine is its only detergent.
What's the disadvantage of Cocamidopropyl Betaine?
The advantage is also the disadvantage. It's not a stong detergent so if you have very greasy hair it won't clean efficiently. If you've been using heavy products you'll need something stronger like a regular sulfate shampoo to get the build-up out.
Is there something even gentler than Cocamidopropyl Betaine?
Yes. Decyl Glucoside. This is very, very mild. One range that uses this gentle cleanser is Aubrey Organics. I used an Aubrey Organics shampoo first when I went natural but I couldn't get past the fact that it doesn't lather.
Are there any other detergents you probably would rather not have in your shampoo?
There you have it, your shampoo bottle reading should now hopefully be much easier!
References: Good Guide, Herbal Luxuries, There Must Be A Better Way, Science of Black Hair
I now blog about wealth creation - so if you have any money questions meet me there, you can do all sorts of cool things like leave me a voicemail.
By Heather Katsonga-Woodward
I was a natural hair blogger and mixtress living between London & Chicago from 2012 to 2017. I always thought I was 4C but some say 4B; images below - you decide! Heather xx