Hair Type Healthy: Simple Tips to Help You on Your Journey to Healthy Natural Hair

Hair care can be simple, you just need to have right foundation. In our quest to reach “hair goals,” our hopes and dreams for how our hair will look are often fueled by end results without considering how we will reach those goals. We want long hair overnight, hydrated strands with one wash, and we want our styles to be easily mastered and last for days. While achieving long, hydrated, healthy strands in a flawless style that last for days is a totally attainable goal, we have to remember that this journey is a marathon not a sprint.

Achieving healthy natural hair takes a little time, and requires that we don’t skip the foundational steps for healthy natural hair. Check out the tips below if you want start your journey to healthy natural strands and a simpler hair care routine.

“Achieving healthy natural hair takes a little time and requires that we don’t skip the foundational steps…”

Shampoo your hair.

First things first, you must start with a clean canvas. There has been much debate about shampoo and if shampooing your hair regularly is beneficial for natural hair. The short answer is yes. As naturals, we should absolutely use shampoo. If you would like more details on why shampooing is beneficial and the types of shampoo you should use, click here.

The frequency you shampoo your hair depends on your lifestyle, but it is recommended that the hair be shampooed every 7-10 days. If you love shampooing your hair like I do, or your lifestyle requires it, biweekly shampooing is ok as well. Just make sure to use gently cleansers that will not strip your strands. Shampooing your hair will allow the dirt, buildup, and residue from styling products to be cleansed away; exposing the cuticle layer and allowing moisture to penetrate the hair strands.   

If you’re new to the shampoo game or notice that you have significant build up on the strands, consider using a cleansing shampoo to aide you in the removal of buildup. If you are a regular shampooer consider adding cleansing shampoo monthly to ensure that you’re working with a clean canvas.

Deep condition your strands weekly.

A good deep conditioner serves several purposes. In addition to closing the cuticle layer and locking in moisture, a good deep conditioner (emphasis on good) will also add much needed nutrients to the hair and aide you in the detangling process.

I’m pretty sure that I don’t have to do too much convincing to get anyone to add a conditioner to their hair care routine, we all know that its benefits are abounding. Regularly conditioned strands will be healthier, having greater elasticity they will become more resistant to breakage leading to retention of length and realized growth.

Heavily processed or color treated hair? Consider using a deep conditioner with protein more regularly to help prevent breakage and dryness.   If you’ve skipped the color or it’s been a while consider using protein every 6 weeks or more regularly if you notice damage or your needs a little TLC

Detangle with a tool.

Hair sheds. It is sometimes discouraging to see the amount of shed hair once we have completed our detangling process. Several things can contribute to shedding, if you are looking to reduce the amount of shed hair and expedite the detangling process consider using a tool. As with all things, user error will definitely affect how successful you are in this endeavor, but generally speaking proper tools are a great resource when preparing to detangle your natural hair.

Most of us don’t have the time or patience required to properly finger detangle our strands, but with the aid of a good conditioner and a proper tool (i.e. FL brush, tangle taser, wet brush) we should be able to masterfully navigate out curly tresses to produce beautifully detangled strands.

To reduce breakage, the goal is minimal stress. Working backwards move from the ends of the hair to the root gently brushing and detangling the strands along the way.

Trim your ends Routinely.

“Let it go so it can grow”

Damage happens. While it is often preventable, clipping your ends is not one of the steps required to prevent the onset of damage. Before you think I’ve lost my mind and completely contradicted myself, realize that while clipping your ends doesn’t prevent the onset of damage it will help to prevent the spread of damage through out the strands.

Routine maintenance and trimming of your ends will allow you to address issues before they have the chance to travel up the strands and cause any further damage. All damage may not require a trim, but routinely assessing the hair and removing any problem areas will work to enhance the overall health of the hair and reduce breakage.

In essence, let it go so it can grow and, in the process, get a dope shape so that you can look fabulous as it grows out.

These are just some of the things you can do on your journey to healthy natural. Slowly incorporate one new healthy hair practice into your routine and before you know it, they will become habits.  Remember this journey is a marathon not a sprint. With a solid foundation you can be well on your way to achieving long, hydrated, healthy strands in a flawless style that last for days.