Heya folks. December 11th was my three year natural anniversary and I must say the journey has had its shares of ups and downs for me. There have been times when I became frustrated when my hair didn't retain the style throughout the day or the moisture simply evaporated during the course of the day even though I applied the LOC or LCO method. Below are a few selfies I took last Saturday. Violet's been flourishing, even in this cold weather, thank God.
I've tried so many products last year, it was beyond ridiculous and began mixing my own concoctions in the kitchen, which I must say have given me very positive results. I've invested in reading so many blogs and things to stay away from like sulfate free shampoos and hair grease. Lord knows I stayed away from hair grease like the plague during my natural journey. Well, these days I still read the blogs, but not as intensely.
The key to this natural hair care journey is discovering what works for you, and I must say, as of today I'm returning to using hair grease. Let me say this. It seems like those single strand knots still came to haunt me even after my trims and moisturizing regimens. I've retained a lot of length since I whacked off my hair in utter frustration back in May of this year. You can read about that little venture here. But I know I can retain more length. Honestly, I should have. I've suffered from some minor setbacks a few months ago due to hormones and some stress before I started wearing my wigs to give my hair some rest. Am I still kicking myself for cutting my arm pit length hair off? You bet your behind I am.
During my relaxed years my hair grew a little pass my collar bone. I had color and it broke off. It thinned, and It looked so horrible. Now this was back in the late 90's. The only other time I achieved arm pit length hair was in the late 80's early 90's due to the moisture I needed to maintain my jheri curl. Yes, oh yes, I have those pics, the hair was thick and luxurious! I am my own hair crush, especially looking at those pictures. But guess what. Eventually, my hair thinned even from the jheri curl, yep, you know as well as I that eventually those chemicals do thin the hair out as you get older. (At least for me, they did). Oh and I didn't have the drip drip curl, my hair was kind of damp to the touch and I never left marks on the couch like in the movie, Coming To America. LOL I'll try and have those old pics scanned and uploaded to show you all one day. I'm telling you, when I look at those old pictures I want to kick myself.
Now, what about those old school methods? My mother uses hair grease on my nine year old niece and guess what? Baby girl has hair down the middle of her back. Mom also put a kiddie perm in her hair a few years back, but it's only once every few months she does that.
Now, thinking back to my relaxed days, I've never had an itchy scalp like I have when I went natural. I've been using Neem and Tea Tree oils for my hot oil treatments. I use it whether I need it or not to keep any fungus, and or bacteria that may be scheming to homestead on my scalp away. I've oiled my scalp with Jojoba oil in the past, but it always evaporates. I can't use Castor Oil directly on my scalp or my scalp becomes sensitive to the touch. I've tested that out twice and i'm not going back! Sunflower oil is a great emollient, but I can't put it directly on my scalp. I'm not a heavy oil user anymore, either. I believe my hair started retaliating against oils a few months ago. I never became an oil user until I started on my natural hair care journey.
And, I do know oils aren't moisturizers. For me, sealing moisture into my hair with oils didn't help so now i'm going to test out hair grease. Now, there's something else. In the quest for moisture retention in your natural hair, have you overlooked your scalp? We try so hard to obtain the moisture for our locks but neglect our scalp. Yes, it is possible to have moisturized hair while your scalp is as dry as the Sahara. I know, I've done it. For those of you struggling with dry scalp problems, do you add a little product to your scalp or no?
Do you remember being a young child and how your mama always used to stress the importance of greasing your scalp? What if that holds true today?
There's so much more knowledge in the natural hair community and I wish we had it back in the day, but perhaps incorporating some of the old school stuff into the modern hair care techniques and regimen's we're utilizing can help make all the difference in how our hair reacts. Think about it. Have you ever used a product for a month, or maybe six months and it doesn't give you the same results before even when layering your products? Then you feel like you have to jump over to another product line? I have. In the past, LOC and LCO methods with oils has worked for me, other times it hasn't. I don't know, just putting some thoughts out there that's been on my mind lately.
Oh, and here is another thing. My 14 year old is biracial with waist length hair. We have a simple regimen for her while incorporating a deep conditioning treatment to her hair. Sometimes we do her hair at home, sometimes to pamper her, we take her to a trusted beautician for a simple wash, blow dry and flat iron.
Over the summer, our stylist used coconut oil to grease my baby's scalp. Geez, I do wish she had asked first. Anyhoo, a few days later she developed flaky patches in the middle of her head. Mmm. Coconut oil. I can't use the stuff in my scalp, either. So, I greased my girl's scalp and it went away. Nothing like some good ole fashion grease, huh? Here's a little secret. My daughter has always had her scalp greased off and on and has had no problems with retaining length. I really do believe there is something to this greasing of the scalp stuff. Her hair and scalp seems so much happier when we grease it.
I'll keep you all updated on the incorporation of grease into my natural hair care regimen. Until next time.