Saturday, 24 January 2015

Hydrating Afro with Coconut Oil

For the past two weeks, I didn't comb my hair at all. In the mornings I sprayed it with a mixture of water and castor oil, then applied Shea butter leave in conditioner. I had never done this before and am not sure why I let laziness get the better of me.  In this period I thought giving the hair moisture would protect it but I ignored/forgot that the hair would tangle even more and now realise (in retrospect) that I was somewhat delusional to think I wasn't damaging my hair. Guess what I discovered today on my wash day? A lot of breakage and knots, grrrrr!

Anyway, no use crying over spilt milk. So I performed a deep hydrating treatment using coconut oil. Here is the Coconut story and a picture:

Why coconut oil?

  • Coconut oil is able to penetrate the hair shaft and fully hydrate your hair because of its light density. Oils that are heavy simply give your hair a shiny glowing look when in reality the hair is dry inside. Other light oils are Avocado oil and Olive oil. 
  • Coconut oil doesn't easily evaporate from your hair and therefore helps your hair stay hydrated/moisturised for longer
  • The oil is good for conditioning your hair, softening it, preventing dandruff and keeping the hair strong and less brittle.

Method I followed

  • Washed my hair and dried it with a T-shirt
  • Smeared/smothered the oil on my hair
  • The oil looks solid, don't panic, when you place it on your hands it melts from the natural heat of your body temperature
  • Applied a plastic cap, then wrapped my hair in my heat wrap (heat accelerates the rate at which the oil penetrates the hair shafts). Think of it this way, if you put sugar in cold water it will dissolve after some lengthy time but if you put it in hot water it melts in few seconds! 
  • I stayed with the heat for 30 mins, washed off the oil (must be a thorough wash), then conditioned and sealed in moisture with other products because my hair is super dry. I'll blog about a detailed wash day explaining the process of conditioning and sealing in moisture in more detail. 
  • Applied heat protection then blow dried my hair using the tension method. Will explain the tension method of blow drying in a separate post.
Happy healthy hair! Team Natural Hair! Team African Afro!

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