So, if you follow me on Insta, you would have seen me talking about my obsession with the Sanaa Lathan movie “Nappily Ever After” and me feeling compelled to cut my curls. Well, I did it! I didn’t quite go to the extremes of shaving it clean (only out of fear that my Mum would have the same reaction as Violet’s Mom in the film) but it is the shortest I have ever had it - other than when I was a baby of course.
I recently debuted my new do to you all on Insta and a few of you have been asking me why I chose to go short and if it’s easier than before. Well I decided to big chop as I had been thinking about it for a long time because I just wanted a fresh start with my hair after years of relaxing, colouring, weaving, braiding and every time I watched “Nappily Ever After” it pushed me closer and closer into doing it until I just decided to go for it. I’m so glad I did. It felt so liberating. And for those asking if it’s easier than before - 100%!! I love that I get to literally wash and go. I absolutely love how simple it is for me on wash day and on a daily basis. In the name of sharing is caring, I thought I would share with you my wash and go routine and the products I use to keep my curls poppin’
Step 1: Wash
A while ago I was gifted a few products from Noughty Hair Care and I absolutely love them. They are super concentrated so you only need a tiny amount, even more so now that I have less hair to wash. But to be honest when washing my hair I have always concentrated more on my scalp rather than the hair itself. As these products are all natural and sulfate free they are perfect for curly kinky types (3 and 4) as they don’t dry out the hair. This Moisture Boost Shampoo is the perfect first step to quench thirsty hair, especially in the hot summer or cold winter moths when the hair tends to be at it’s driest
Step 2: Deep Condition
I was actually recently gifted this amazing Intensive Treatment Hair Mask when I was in Whole Foods and got speaking to the co-owner of the brand, which she and her sister created for their mixed race daughters to help tame their hair. The thing with afro hair is that there are so many different types of curls and a lot of us tend to have more than one curl type, which she said her daughter has. She spoke about the struggle of finding a product that could work on all of her hair, so she did some research and created Curly Ellie (named after her daughter). When I told her that I was a blogger and expecting my first child, which will also be of mixed race, she decided to gift me a product to try on my hair and my child’s hair (these products can be used on babies 6 months and over). She told me that this specific product is good for all curl types and that if you have a tighter curl pattern then this product works amazing if you leave it in overnight. Boy she wasn’t wrong. Every Friday or Saturday evening, I wash my hair with the Noughty Hair Care shampoo and then I use an old t-shirt to dry my hair (unlike a towel, it doesn’t create static or frizz and soaks the water out of the hair without stripping it of it’s moisture - perfect for curly girls)
Then after about 10 minutes I apply a generous amount of this hair mask to my hair, paying close attention to any areas that tend to be drier (for me this is the crown area especially in summer months) then I let it air dry slightly before putting my satin bonnet on ready for bed
Step 3: Oil scalp
For those who have naturally oily hair, you can skip this step, but I suffer with a really dry scalp (but it isn’t as bad now that I have cut my hair possibly because my hair isn’t being pulled every which way like it used to be) so after thoroughly rinsing out my my mask and drying my hair with my old t-shirt again, I use my Afrochenchix Soothe oil to moisturise my scalp and massage my scalp to ensure it fully penetrates my roots and scalp
Love how it comes with this handy nozzle so that you can target your scalp directly and with it being a glass bottle, you don’t end up squeezing too much out and wasting it
Step 4: Moisturise
As part one of the L.O.C. method that I have come to love for keeping my curls moisturised, I then thoroughly spritz my hair with this divinely smelling moisturising Sheen spray, ensuring to rub it in afterwards to coat every strand
Step 5: Lock In Moisture
As the second part of the L.O.C. method, I seal in the moisture using the very aptly named Seal from Afrocenchix. It comes with a useful pump so that you use the correct amount. After pumping it into my hand, I rub it into my hair. I love the smell of all of these products. The lemongrass and citrus oil are so therapeutic and really give me a sense of zen. Namaste!
Step 6: Quench Curls
So next up, as the third and final step in the L.O.C. method to keep my curls from drying out I use this delicious scented Smooth Cream from Afrocenchix. It’s so luxuriously creamy and helps my little curls stay poppin’ for longer and prevents them from drying out.
I love that these 3 products come in a handy set called the Moisture Surge Set. They also do a set which has all products in and works out cheaper than buying them all individually, but as I have my go to shampoo already I thought I’d wait until I finished that first and then I’ll try the full set once all of these products run out (I have a whole cupboard of hair products that I have been trying to get through so don’t want to buy a load more when I don’t need them yet)
Step 7: Detangle
To make sure the cream coats my strands evenly, I use my Denman D3 brush. These brushes are perfect for curls as the hard plastic bristles help gently detangle without making the hair frizzy
Step 8: Define and Style
Once my hair is nicely detangled, it is time to define those curls to keep them poppin for longer. So before applying my final product to define my hair, I use a metal tail comb to part my hair on the side. I find that using a tail comb, especially a metal one gives me ultra precision when it comes to parting my hair
Now, this final step was a game changer for me once I discovered it, as it means most mornings I can wake up and not have to worry about my hair at all. So once my parting is looking sharp, I apply this AMAZING Smoothing Gel from As I Am. This stuff is an absolute dream for me because it defines my curls and keeps them moisturised for days. The smell is also heavenly (I’m all about scents in case you didn’t notice - this has been my downfall on occasion because I have bought stuff that weren’t so good because of how they smelt - luckily that wasn’t the case with this one)
To apply this gel, I put a load in my hand and then gently apply it to my curls a little section at a time, ensuring I rub it in thoroughly (nobody like clumpy gel hair - not a good look)
Et Voila! It seems like a lot of steps but it actually takes me about 5 minutes maximum to do this. Then I put my bonnet on every night which keeps my curls silky soft so every morning I can just get up and go (obviously I shower - but don’t need to touch my hair) only thing I occasionally have to do is gel down my edges and maybe neaten up my parting but that’s the extent of my weekday morning hair routine
Mid-week touch ups
So when the sun is ultra hot my hair can tend to start feeling a bit crispy. I was lucky enough to be gifted this oil from Monat which I use to refresh my hair during the week if it needs it.
If my hair needs more definition, then I’ll spritz in more of the Afrocenchix Sheen and rub it in, add a drop or two of this oil to my hands (it comes with a dropper - or a pipette as I was recently was it’s technical name, which makes it easier to use a specific amount) and then I’ll rub this into my hair, then lastly I’ll add a small amount of the gel to any parts of the hair that seem to need it. This usually tends to be my hairline and back of my hair from where I have slept on it or sweat out my sleek edges. But to answer my earlier question, this hair style is deffo easier to manage than my previous styles. The hubby isn’t too keen on it as he liked my longer hair but for when the bubbah comes I know it will come in handy not having to spend hours on my hair on wash day. So I may well be keeping my hair this length for a while