One of my blog readers, Sandra, emailed me with a question regarding how often should she wash her natural hair.
Firstly, can I just say that this is a brilliant question.
Within the black community it has traditionally been believed that washing black hair can be damaging because over-shampooing strips curly/afro hair of moisture.
As a result, many black and mixed race women have grown up with the belief that it is bad to wash their curls too often.
Whilst, there is a lot of truth to this assertion, it’s important to pay attention to a few things.
#1. We need to clarify what is meant by ‘washing.’
If you plan on shampooing your afro or curly hair every day, you will most likely over-cleanse your hair and that will ultimately result in dryness which in turn leads to breakage.
Curly and afro hair chicks should therefore not shampoo their hair every day.
That leads me to my next point.
#2. Shampooing daily is bad but rinsing your hair daily is good! In fact it’s great! Natural hair loves water and it is therefore a brilliant idea to apply warm water to your hair on a regular basis. Why do you think that almost all hair products contain water as the first or second ingredient? It’s because water is one of the best natural moisturisers for natural hair. If your hair is tightly-coiled, kinky textured or prone to tangles and knots, it’s recommended that you apply water and oil to your hair on a daily (or very frequent) basis.
In other words, replace daily shampooing with daily rinsing and your hair will look amazing!
#3. Co-washing. If you’ve never heard of the term co-washing before it simply refers to washing your hair with conditioner rather than shampoo. It sounds a little strange but millions of naturals swear by it.
Co-washing allows natural girls to cleanse their hair without over-cleaning it. Furthermore, it’s effective because most conditioners will not strip your hair of its natural oils unlike shampoos.
Whilst co-washing sounds like a curly girl’s dream solution to preventing over-shampooing and dryness, it can have it’s downsides.
For one thing, over co-washing or co-washing too often can lead to product build up. Product build up simply refers to when your hair is weighed down by so much product which causes your hair to be sticky, gooey and a dry, crazy mess. Product build up is incredibly common in women who co-wash too often.
So if over co-washing is bad and over-shampooing causes dryness, what can a natural haired girl do instead?
Here are some tips to help you.
#1 Shampoo your hair once a week at most. Ideally, you should shampoo your hair once every 2-3 weeks and use a sulphate free shampoo that contains healthy natural oils. Our Cleansing Cream Shampoo does just that.
#2 Co-wash your natural hair once every 2-3 days at most. Ideally you should co-wash once a week. Like I said above, over co-washing can cause build up so try to do it once a week rather than daily.
#3 Rinse or wet your hair daily. Some naturalistas prefer to rinse their hair in the shower and that’s perfectly fine. However, if that option isn’t for you simply get a spay bottle and fill it with water. Spritz as much as you need onto your hair and you’ll get the benefits of rinsing in a very time efficient way.
Now it’s your turn. In the comments below tell me what was your biggest takeaway from reading this post? Will you co-wash less or more often? Or, are you excited to be rinsing your hair daily? I’d love to hear from you.