Last night on Instagram (follow me!) a lovely reader asked me how I keep my hair from reverting. My answer would have had me thumb hustling my iPhone replying back on IG so I decided to do a post…lol.
I’ve been natural since 2010. Once I couldn’t handle the two textures after transitioning for only like 2 1/2 months, I started wearing sew-in weaves. I was in between hair appointments and dying to take my weave out so I did it myself and then was all “Might as well big chop!” so I did…lol. I rocked with that for a while before getting bored with my hair (looking back I wish I would have experimented with haircuts at that stage more) and tried some other styles. Then I shaved one side of my hair after some really bad breakage. Then I grew it back (so much easier than you think—see how I did it here). You can see a mini hair timeline here and all posts pertaining to my hair here.
I know this day and age everything beauty seems to be DIY especially with natural hair, but I will always be a salon girl…lol. Even when I had my medium sized fro my best twist out ever came from going to my stylist Gabrielle Corney. So I count on her to get my hair the way I love it (be it weaves or my own hair) and then I try to maintain it myself at home.
At the gym/swimming
I workout 3-5 times a week and I’m back at swimming lessons once a week for the next 6 weeks so my hair is constantly needing something…lol. For the gym I wrap a satin scarf on and then put a hat over it. My heat styled natural hair doesn’t remain perfect but doing this at least allows me to have some sort of style retention.
Now swimming. SIGH. Swimming is such a rewarding experience and great exercise but lawd it can be inconvenient when it comes to hair…lol. Before I get in the pool I get my hair wet with non-chlorine water and add a little conditioner before putting on my swim cap. This helps my hair from absorbing too much of the damaging chlorine water (hair has a certain saturation point so wetting it with “good” water helps keep it from absorbing some of the “bad” water). Once I’m home (the shower at the Y kinda scares me so I just go straight home after…lol) I wash my hair with Malibu C Superior Swimmers Kit which contains a treatment to help remove chlorine plus a shampoo and conditioner. It makes zero sense to get my hair done while I’m taking swimming lessons so I found that having weave that matches my natural hair texture (when blown out) is best for low maintenance for me. You can see what I wore during my last set of swimming lessons here.
Tools and products
OK so this is where I credit most of my anti-reversion. I start by using shampoos and conditioners made for smoothing naturally curly and kinky hair. Some of my fave sets include:
You can see more of the curly to straight kits on the market here.
I also love using Carol’s Daughter Monoi Shampoo, Mask, and Leave-in.
After the gym or whenever my hair needs to be revived before washing it again, my heat styled natural hair loves a good hair oil. Rub a little into the hair and it does wonders for shine, vibrance, and style. My faves include plain ole vitamin E oil (mine is even a generic from CVS…lol), Caudalie Divine Oil, Carol’s Daughter Monoi Oil Serum, and Ouidad Mongongo Oil.
I also like a good dry shampoo to help revive an old blowout or if my hair gets too greasy. You can see why they work and some of my faves here.
To keep my edges “laid” I LOVE Tancho Tique Stick. My hairstylist introduced me to it years ago when she used it on my hair to keep my hair looking sleek especially the part left out when I wear weave. She taught me a little trick that I now do at home when I flat iron my own hair: dab a little Tancho Tique Stick on your hair before AND after passing the flat iron through. But just a little because if you use too much it can get really greasy. But I swear by my Tancho Tique for keeping my hair looking fresh.
As far as heat tools, I get a lot of things sent to me by virtue of doing this blog so I pretty much just use what I’m sent…lol. For my flat iron I LOVE my Hot Tools Cool Tools 1 ¼” Conditioning Vapor Flat Iron as well as one I own by Jose Eber. When it comes to creating the big waves I love, my Remington Curling Wand is my go-to. It’s so easy—all you need to do is wrap small sections of hair around the iron (twirl it, girl) and let it sit for a few seconds then release. I used to wear gloves in the beginning because I’m clumsy and um, ouch but now I’m much better at not burning my fingers. Once in a while I use a curling iron but I need to get a smaller one and will probably get one from Hot Tools next.
No matter if I’m wearing my own hair or a weave, I always make sure to wrap my hair with a satin scarf before bed. It helps keep my hair in place and also helps prevent my hair from drying out (hair likes fabrics like satin and silk—cotton and wool: not so much).
Rain and humidity always try my hair…lol. I find that using a good smoothing system helps (I mentioned my faves earlier in this post) and a good hairspray helps, too (some of my faves are Moroccanoil Luminous Hairspray and L’Oreal Elnett—see more here).
But if I need to be somewhere and my hair needs to look decent, I’ll usually wear a hat or if it’s the winter, cover myself with an oversized scarf (with my satin scarf as a protective layer between the wool and cotton) to help preserve my style.
When all else fails
I have many beanies, hats, and printed scarves to get me by…lol.
Another reason why my hair might look like it’s always laid: I try not to post pictures when it’s not…lol. This isn’t to say I don’t have tons of bad hair day pics of me floating around (because people play too much)—I just personally didn’t post them myself…lol.
So that’s it, I think…lol. Hopefully I didn’t miss a step…lol. If you have questions or want to add how you keep your heat styled natural hair from reverting, leave them in the comments!
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