Beautiful…I get frustrated too, so you’re not alone. As loyal as I am to my natural hair, meaning a relaxer will not touch my hair again “by fire by force,” sometimes I can get so annoyed with it. From single strand knots to parched coils that refused to be quenched at times, I understand the frustration you’re feeling. It’s a universal feeling and I stand in solidarity with you. But why exactly are you frustrated?
From threading to braids, Nigerian women aren’t afraid to experiment with their hair. We have been consistently adding attachments and weaves to adorn our beloved crowns. Gone are the days that a TWA (that’s Teeny Weeny Afro) meant you were on your way to boarding school or being punished for remotely enticing a boy with your hair just by letting the wind catch a strand. Now, a modern group of Nigerian Naturalistas are in the front of the hair class, giving us the inspiration to Big Chop and start over, proudly wearing our natural coils without shame. Here are a few noted Nigerians leading the way to help us embrace our beauty, naturally.
Last week, I put up a post about good moisturizers for low porosity hair. This time, I want to talk about high porosity hair (you didn’t think I would leave this out did you?). If you don’t know how to test the difference, read this post. Unlike low porosity hair, high porosity hair absorbs moisture really well. However, it also loses moisture easily. Because the hair cuticles are often open, it’s hard for high porous hair to retain moisture. High porous hair can be attributed to heat damage, poor hair maintenance, harsh hair dyes or just good ‘ole genes. It’s usually thin and can break easily if not properly maintained. High porosity hair needs heavier products and sealants to aid in retaining moisture. Products that contain butters and thicker oils like shea butter, mango butter, babassu oil, olive oil and avocado oil can help to retain moisture high porosity hair. Also, protein-rich products aid in strengthen the hair. Proteins temporarily fill the porous gaps leaving the hair stronger and less prone to tangles and knots. Personally, I have high porosity hair. I use castor oil on an almost daily basis for my twist outs and I try to deep condition my hair after every wash. Here are some products to try for your hair.
Most naturals either have low porosity or high porosity hair. You can test this by putting some of your strands in a bowl of water for a few minutes to see if it floats or sinks. If your strands float then you probably have low porosity hair and if it sinks than high porosity hair. Low porosity occurs when the hair cuticles are tightly bound with overlapping scales that make it difficult for moisture to enter the hair shaft. Which means you tend to have super dry hair. It’s best to stay away from protein-rich products and heavy oils that will just sit on top of your hair shaft making your hair stiff or oily. Emollients like shea butter and coconut oils are excellent moisture boosters. Also, products with humectant ingredients that draw moisture from the air like honey and glycerin make your coils bounce with moisture. So if you leave in a humid climate like parts of Nigeria, ladies with low-porosity hair can mix honey or glycerin with their conditioners to add more moisture to their coils. Using hair milks and lighter oils like jojoba oil, grapeseed oil and argan oil will help to add moisture to your strands by easily penetrating your hair shaft. Just remember that because it’s harder to get moisture into low porosity hair, lighter products will be better than the heavy creams and butters.
We’ve all been there, yes? You’re on a lovely beach, ready to dip your perfectly polished pedicure into the salty clear blue seas, and then you realize you are not Bo Derek in 10. Your hair is not naturally straight and it’s not immune to the curling power of water. You have natural kinky hair that will fight to cling together in tight coils if the slightest ounce of water touches your tresses. However, the good news is there are ways to prep your hair to prevent sun, chlorine and salt damage, so you can maintain your beautiful natural glow all summer long.
I’ve always been a fan of flowers accenting my afro. My slight boho sensibilities get giddy with flowers in coils. Lately, this bohemian trend has been making an appearance all over Instagram with the floral crown stickers. I even did a post on a Flower Power bridal shower theme, because I love flowers. To continue with the floral festivities here are some inspiring looks to try this summer.
In my quest to find a manageable protective style, I decided to give crochet braids a try. However, instead of embarking on the original process, I decided to create a crochet wig. I wanted to be able to have access to my natural hair effortlessly without the extensive process of taking out cornrows, etc. to expose my natural hair. The result was gorgeous! I loved the wig and I constantly got compliments. Now, I want to take it a step further and find ways to transform a crochet wig with an elegant updo. Here’s some inspiration.
1. The Semi-Dutch Braid
2. The Partial Goddess Braid
3. The Sleek Tuck & Roll
4. The Bouffant Bangs
5. The Wavy Side Swoop & Tuck
Tell me, which style would you elegantly wear?