Common misconceptions about the care of Hair (whether natural, relaxed or transitioning)


I was speaking with a customer recently who had just taken out a style she'd had for about 3 weeks - I advised that after we shampooed she would need to get a proper deep conditioning treatment using the steamer and she was hesitant saying she'd read somewhere that 'steaming a lot' was bad for the hair.

 A few days later, I was reading somewhere where someone said something along the lines of 'steaming the hair weekly is not good as that is too much heat for the hair'. Is it really? So I thought I'd just do a quick compilation of stuff just to bring a different perspective on a number of things people believe to be true and non negotiable.


1.Steaming the hair often is bad for the hair as that is applying too much heat and can lead to damage: Direct heat which can lead to breakage prone damaged hair and  heat from a wet steam are different things. Direct heat is when heat is applied directly to the hair strands by using heat tools such as blow dryers, flat irons, curling irons, hot combs etc. The heat from the appliance literally fries the hair cuticle leading to dry brittle hair that breaks off. This is why we are advised to ALWAYS use a heat protectant before applying direct heat to your hair.

Heat Damaged Hair From Flat Iron Use.
Wet heat on the other hand is vapor that is derived from water - this type of heat helps the cuticles of the hair open up so that whatever deep conditioning treatment you have in your hair will penetrate deeper into the cortex of the hair; nourishing from deep within. Also we already know that water is great for hair and the steam is just that - water. A lot of women have seen improved manageability, textures and healthier hair by introducing weekly deep conditioning treatment that employ the use of steam.

 Don't have a steamer? Let the steam from your shower do the work! When I first started taking care of my hair, I'd go to the gym and after working out, apply my conditioner, cover with a cap and go into the steam room! Soothed muscles AND better moisturized hair in one step!
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Dry heat (bonnet/hooded dryers) is also a form of indirect heat and helps to lift the cuticle to allow deeper penetration of  your deep conditioning treatment.

After deep conditioning it is always advisable to rinse out your conditioners with cool water as this closes the cuticles back up, sealing them and preventing them from being frayed and damaged in the subsequent styling process.


2. You can use Shea butter alone on your hair everyday: Shea butter is a sealant and WILL NOT MOISTURIZE your hair. Same thing goes for other butters and all oils. Oils seal in moisture so if you don't have any moisture (water or a water based moisturizer) in your hair, sooner rather than later, you will have dry, oily hair. Shea butter is fantastic so are all natural oils - they are just meant to lock in moisture not impart moisture to hair.

3. Washing hair every week is too much - Our hair tends towards dryness and the sebum our scalps produce does not easily find its way down the hair shaft as easily as say, Caucasian hair. Hair that is dry becomes brittle and brittle hair breaks off. It stands to reason therefore that if hair tends to dryness, the best thing for it is moisture, and what is the easiest and cheapest form of moisture? Water!

Contrary to what we grew up hearing and believing, our hair actually thrives when it is washed regularly. The first step in healthy hair growth is a clean scalp: a dirty scalp leads to blocked pores and blocked pores mean hair is prevented from coming through, but when the scalp is clean, the pores have an optimal environment to grow in and healthy strands come through easily. Furthermore, the water moisturizes the hair making it more resilient and less prone to breakage.



4. Taking care of natural hair is an expensive venture: Taking care of natural or relaxed hair is as expensive or as cheap as you make it. There are people who have worked out what works for their hair using stuff from their kitchen (Eggs, Mayonnaise, honey, Apple Cider Vinegar, Baking Soda, Olive, Palm and Coconut oils,  Avocados, bananas, etc)  and it works a charm for them.  There are others who use only high end off the shelf products and that works a charm for them too! Find out what works for you and stick to it.

5. No need for shampoo to wash natural hair - just use Dudu Osun: Dudu Osun is a great mix of black soap and other natural goodies - thing is, it clarifies hair meaning it will strip your hair of oils and whatever else is on it. With regular use, you get dry brittle strands. Our hair already tends to dryness so add regular clarifying to the equation and the end result will be dry, brittle strands that break off easily. Clarifying hair should be limited to once or twice a month depending on how heavy handed you are with products.


6. My  hair is breaking, if I go natural it will stop breaking off: The first thing that needs to be determined is WHY the hair is breaking. If it's due to improper hair care then going natural will only mean you will have natural hair that is breaking. Going natural does not automatically solve all hair issues.

As I always say listen to your hair, determine what works for you and not what the next person swears is working for THEM, don't jump on every bandwagon and be patient with your hair and with yourself :)

So are there any things you heard before you started your healthy hair journey and have now discovered to be untrue especially in your own hair journey?


9 comments

  1. Thanks!

    I'd always thought shea butter is a moisturiser; thanks for the correction.

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  2. Thanks for the post.i think I read somewhere washing your hair often is bad for you!at least I can wash it guilt free now. Another issue is the common my hair is breaking up,let me cut it issue which Nigerian women I know seem to do a lot.Thanks ok.How was d salon today?Hope u aren't too stressed?

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    Replies
    1. Hiya! Glad this has helped you! Salon was busy as usual but I'm great! Thank you so much for asking. Have a blessed week xo

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  3. Hi, got da link to your site from bellanaija, and am glad I have found you. I have artificial dreads on my hair now that is overdue too, and I intend to keep natural hair after removing the dreads. Question is wud my natural hair survive after removing the dreads because I dnt wanna cut my hair low. Please help. Thanks

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    1. Hiya! Glad you found us too! I'm not really sure why you think your hair won't 'survive' the temporary locs. As far as I know it's just like having braids in and once you take them out, wash, deep condition and pamper your hair back to strength if it's been weakened by being kept away for so long. No reason to cut it unless there's irreparable damage done to it!

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    2. Thank you so much, but I think it would be best to visit your office personally when I am ready to get the locs out, to also enable you have a look at my hair and recommend best procedures and treatments. Thank you once again. #hugs#

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  4. nice blog
    great information.
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  5. Very Nice article. thanks for sharing very useful tips
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