LoPo’s Frenemies: Kimmaytube Leave-In, cold water/vinegar rinses and heavy oils

Before I discovered my hair was low porosity, I was all about closing my cuticles with low Ph products or cold water and locking in moisture with heavy oils such as shea butter and coconut oil. Coconut oil has many health benefits and I really wanted my hair to enjoy being coated in it, but it just did nothing for my hair but exacerbate its dryness. Just imagine low porosity hair as a spong covered in cling wrap, if I proceed to cover the cling wrap in oils, the moisture is just not going to reach my hair, no matter how hard I try. After I realized this, I made some major adjustments to my regimen.

1. I stopped using Kimmaytube leave-in. The original recipe, which comes from famed Youtube personality Kim Love, contains:2 tablespoons of Kinky Curly Knot Today + 2 tablespoons of  aloe vera juice + 2 teaspoons of castor oil +2 teaspoons of jojoba oil. 

This leave-in left me with frizz, white residue and dry hair. My hair felt coated and tacky. Once I removed the oils and the aloe from the mixture, essentially leaving me with just leave-in, I saw an immediate improvement. Again, I’ve tried to make my hair love aloe, because it’s such a wonderful natural hair product, however, my hair just despises it!

2. I stopped doing vinegar rinses/cold water rinses. Again, great all natural products and techniques to enhance shine and seal the cuticle. For my low porosity hair not so great. My story would start like this, I’d wash and condition. After my conditioner, my hair would feel nice and detangled and soft. I’d then pour my vinegar rinse or freezing cold water over my head and my hair would instantly shrink up and frizz up. I’d then spend the next hour trying to apply creams and serums to regain the moisture.

3. After my cold water/vinegar rinses, I’d follow by sealing with shea butter or coconut oil. My hair would shine like a new penny for the first day. The second day it was both dry and oily. It was like I was suffocating my hair, any hope of moisture was ruled out by the fortress of oil I’d applied. It took me a long time to accept that my hair doesn’t always need oil. It was only until one day when I spent hours trying to wash out layers and layers of shea butter– not fun! I know that coconut oil is one of few select oils that can penetrate the hair shaft. That’s fine and dandy, but my hair just wasn’t having it.

Eliminating these three stages, has not only saved me a lot on time, but also money. It takes a lot of trial and error to figure out what works best. Now I know my hair:

  • doesn’t mind some light oils like jojoba and sweet almond.
  • loves water based creams for leave-ins (if it’s not water based, I add water to it).
  • can handle a small amount of aloe or shea butter on the ends. I think this is because this part of our hair is the oldest and most susceptible to damage.
  • hates to be rinsed in cold water and is not a friend of vinegar.

I attribute eliminating these products from my hair regimen to contributing to fast and healthy growth. Believe me, I’ve had set backs and had to cut and trim here and there, however, after I started figuring out what worked for me, that’s when my hair started to flourish. I’ve included pictures below of my hair, one year after going natural in 2012 and this month, two years after going natural.

Did you use any products or techniques for a long time, only to discover they did more harm than help your hair?

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Lo-po’s BFF: Rhassoul Clay Mud Wash

Rhassoul clay can be used to make an inexpensive, all natural, cleansing and conditioning hair wash. I use this as my shampoo and conditioner about 2 – 3 times per month. It makes my hair soft, tangle free, shiny and helps revive my curls and kinks. I usually apply this wash on a Sunday, when I can just take my time and not feel rushed. The great thing about this product is that a little goes a long way and you usually don’t need to follow with a conditioner.

A little information on rhassoul clay:
It’s a natural mineral clay found in the Atlas Mountains in Morocco. It’s known for its cleansing properties. It has been used since the 8th century as a beauty product for skin and hair!

It is made of:

silica 58%
aluminum 2.47%
Irons 0.64%
sodium 2.3%
magnesium 25.2%
calcium 2.34%

Silica has been shown to help reduce hair loss and aid in growth, by regenerating cell growth and strengthening the connective tissue of the hair, skin and nails. Rhassoul clay is made up of more than 50% of silica! magnesium has also been shown to decrease hair loss. I’ve used rhassoul clay for almost a year now and I love the results.

How I apply and mix it:

  1. **About 5 TBSP of rhassoul clay, Mixed with about 7- 10 TBSP of water (amount will vary depending on hair’s length and thickness. You don’t want the mixture to be thick like a pancake mixture nor watery. My mixture is usually on the thinner side, so I can spread it, but it’s not runny.
  2. I then add 1-2 tsps of vinegar or aloe. I’ve tried this mixture without adding vinegar or aloe and it resulted in dry hair. So from now on this is how I mix it.
  3. (Optional) I mix in a little tea tree oil and about 1 TBSP of Brahmi or Vatika oil and mix it well.
  4. I split my hair into 4 sections, dampen it and either in the tub or leaning over the tub (it can get messy), I apply the rhassoul clay to each section. I do not rub it into the hair, but gently apply it to my hair, being sure to coat the entire section with a small amount.
  5. I detangle my hair at this point or do it after in the shower.
  6. Put on a plastic bag/cap and let it sit for 20 – 30 minutes, rinse out the clay with warm water (detangling each section if I haven’t done so already). When the water runs clear and you’ve rinsed your hair well, you’re done.
  7. Your hair should feel soft and strong. If you’d like or if your hair still feels a bit dry, you can lightly condition your ends with a moisturizing shampoo.

** Never mix clays in a metal bowl nor metal utensils.

Sources:
Wikipedia
Mountain Rose
Live Strong

I live abroad, so buy my rhassoul clay in Europe, however you can buy rhassoul clay from:
http://www.mountainroseherbs.com
It’s a one lb bag and will probably last you over a year. It costs 9 dollars, so that’s basically .16 cents a week!

I’ve also heard positive things about Anita Grant’s Mud Wash. It’s a lot costlier than buying a bag and mixing it yourself, however, if you’re not a mix-tress, it may be a better option for you.

-https://anitagrant.com/

Have you tried rhassoul clay?

Calling All Low Porosity Beauties

Do you have low porosity hair? I want to hear your voices! If you would like to be featured on this blog, please send me an email with the following:

Subject: lopo feature

  1. In 50 words or less describe yourself (such as: name, what you do, personality, hobbies).
  2. Describe your hair and regimen.
  3. How do you maintain healthy hair?
  4. Have you any encountered challenges/problems with low porosity hair? If so what?
  5. Any tips on caring for low porosity hair?

Look forward to your entries!

Lo-Po’s BFF: Healthy Heat

As mentioned in an earlier post, there are certain techniques that have worked remarkably on my low porosity hair. Three of the techniques I listed were: warm conditioners, deep conditioners with heat and warm water rinses. They all have one thing in common: the use of heat. Heat is a friend of low porosity hair.  I don’t mean flat-iron or curling iron heat, but using a little steam and heat during your cleansing routine. Remember, the trick with this hair porosity is slightly lifting the cuticle to welcome moisture into our hair shaft.

I used to baggy for days. For those of you who aren’t familiar with baggying, it’s basically, leaving a plastic cap on your hair for several hours or overnight and using your body heat to provide a deep conditioning effect. This did nothing for my hair, but make it mushy and limp.

What helps me in my deep conditioning process is using heat and steam.

1. Warm conditioner

Squeeze conditioner in a container, place the container in a sink of hot water for about 10-15 minutes and apply the conditioner to your hair. This can help lift your cuticles and moisturize your hair.

2. Rinse your hair with warm, not lukewarm or cold water.

Cold water rinses are all the rave, because they seal the cuticle and impart shine. This may work for most people, but for low porosity hair, this just locks out moisture. Before you condition your hair, wet it with warm/very warm — not hot, water.

3. Deep condition with heat

Sit under your steamer if you’re lucky enough to have one. I use a soft bonnet dryer. I apply my deep conditioner, cover it with a plastic cap and sit under the dryer for 30 -40 minutes. If you don’t have a dryer or steamer, simply use a towel. Wet it with very warm water, wring out about 50 percent of the water, wrap it around your hair and cover your hair with a plastic cap or bag for about 10 – 15 minutes.

4. Another tip that I forgot to mention is applying a medium amount of heat after applying a leave-in to your hair. When I style my hair, I apply a little heat from my blow dryer for about 15 minutes. This helps my hair absorb the leave-in or light oils that I use.

Remember, for low porosity hair, heat during the conditioning phase is key.

How do you condition your hair, what tips and tricks work for you?

Upcoming Posts:

Rhassoul Clay Lo-Po BFF ( I will discuss how I apply it and show pics of my results)

LoPo’s Frenemies: Kimmaytube Leave-In, cold water/vinegar rinses and heavy oils

Check out: My regimen