I often hear naturals complain about how dry and dull their hair is — especially if they have 4C hair, which can be tightly coiled and prone to dryness.
You may be thinking, “If I am no longer relaxing my hair, then why does it feel drier than when I used chemicals?”
The one thing you need to know about natural hair is that the kinkier (tightly coiled) it is, the drier it will be in many cases.
When your hair has more kinks, it’s harder for your scalp’s natural oils to travel down your strands. You also may have less shine/sheen.
That is why some people who have looser/straighter curl patterns don’t have as much of a problem with dryness.
Your pattern can also explain why your hair has a very low sheen and no shine. Shine comes from light reflection. That’s why relaxed hair appears shinier. Straight hair reflects the light better.
Natural hair has more of a sheen when healthy and properly moisturized.
So if your hair is very kinky (4B/4C curl patterns), it will be harder for it to reflect light and your hair may appear dull.
But there’s good news…
No, you cannot change your hair’s texture. However, with proper TLC you can still bring out your strand’s natural sheen and revitalize your tresses.
AAAAND…. as you’ll see below, you CAN do a successful wash and go on kinkier hair. You just need moisture and the right steps.
So let’s jump to it…
Know Your Hair’s Porosity
Porosity refers to how open your cuticles are on your hair shaft. If they aren’t open enough, moisture can’t get in (low porosity). Your hair may feel dry and straw-like if you use too much protein.
If the cuticles are too open, your hair can frizz and tangle easily (high porosity). High porosity often comes from heat or chemical damage.
Take the hair porosity test here.
Buy Water-Based Moisturizers & Good Sealants!
Unless the first or second ingredient is water, it’s not a true moisturizer. Don’t be fooled by products that claim to moisturize your hair, but don’t even have water (or it’s listed as one of the last ingredients.)
The term “moisturizer” is used so loosely and incorrectly on natural hair products. Now you know the secret to discovering if it’s REALLY a moisturizer or not.
Sealants contain oil and/or butters that seal in water (moisture). So if you twist your hair while it’s damp (water is your moisturizer) and apply a good sealant, that will keep your hair moisturized and soft for a long time.
See how to make your own shea butter sealant.
Here are some good moisturizers and sealants for natural hair that I really like…
1) Jane Carter Nourish and Shine (This is a sealant. When you use with water (damp hair), it keeps your hair moisturized for a long time.) You can buy online or at Target.
2) Shea Moisture Products (They have tons of moisturizing products. You can buy at Walgreens, Target or Amazon)
3) Shea Moisture Leave In Conditioner (I believe this is an older Shea Moisture product, but I can only find this at Amazon. Nevertheless, it’s GREAT! Check out how it moisturized my puff.)
4) Qhemet Biologics Amla and Olive Heavy Cream (Another great sealant.)
5) Oyin Hair Dew (A light moisturizer.)
6) Oyin Burnt Sugar Pomade (This sealant smells sooooo good and will make your twists very soft and luscious!)
NOTE: I rarely use a thick sealant and moisturizer together because it’s too much product and I’ll have build up.
If I use a thick sealant like Qhemet Biologics, I use water as my moisturizer. So I will spritz my hair first and then use the Qhemet Biologics as my twisting cream. The product holds the water/moisture in and my hair will be soft for several days.
See some of the best rated natural hair moisturizers at the bottom of the page.
NOTE >>> When searching for moisturizers for kinky, dry hair, look for thicker, creamier products.
Do The Cherry Lola Treatment
No, this has nothing to do with adding fruit to your tresses. 🙂 It was named after the lady who invented it.
This is an EXCELLENT protein + moisture + clarifying treatment for your hair and scalp that will help reduce frizz and make your curls pop. The 3 ingredients are liquid aminos, yogurt and baking soda.
The aminos give your hair a protein boost while the yogurt infuses moisture into your hair. Finally, the baking soda helps cleanse your hair of all build up and dirt to let moisture penetrate your hair shaft.
When your hair can absorb moisture better, your natural curl pattern will come out easier. If you are in the Type 4 group with low porosity hair that doesn’t hold moisture well, you are going to love this treatment, and it’s super easy to make and apply!
1) Mix the following ingredients in a bowl…
- 16 oz. of full-fat, PLAIN yogurt (I use Chobani)
- 2 tablespoons of Braggs Liquid Aminos (buy at health food store in the soy sauce aisle)
- 2 tablespoon of baking soda
2) Section your DRY hair and add the mixture to your hair from root to tip. You will instantly see your curl pattern start popping out as you coat your hair. Apply generously and don’t be afraid to overlap.
I tend to use a lot more of the mixture on my really dry/brittle areas like my crown!
3) Place a plastic cap on your head and leave on hair for 20-45 minutes.
4) Rinse with a cup of water to keep from disturbing your natural curl pattern. But if that is too tedious for you, feel free to rinse in the shower.
I’m telling you… when you rinse this out, your hair is going to feel like silk!!
5) Follow up with a rinse-out or deep conditioner of your choice if you wish.
Wait at least 2 weeks between treatments. Too much protein is not good for your hair.
Try The Max Hydration Method (MHM)
Let me tell you, this method is the TRUTH.
You do this treatment for 7 consecutive days or until your hair is fully hydrated. You will know because…
- Your hair will retain moisture very well (less product to achieve optimal moisture level)
- You’ll have less shrinkage
- Your curl pattern will pop with less frizz
- Your hair will be stronger (less breakage)
- There will be fewer tangles
This won’t change your pattern, but it will highlight what you have naturally.
You can also do it every other day or every 3 days. Just understand the more you space your 7 treatments, the less effective it will be because you will lose moisture.
The first time you do it, you should really do it for 7 days straight. Then you won’t have to do it as often since your hair will be hydrated.
I got great results doing it every other day, but I probably would have had better results doing it daily the first time.
Read more about max hydration and how to do the steps here.
Big shout out to Pinke Cube for introducing me to this method. Check out her results too. Amazing!
Why I Love The Shea Moisture Conditioner
When your hair is properly moisturized, your natural curl pattern will come out when you use conditioning leave-ins and water.
The Shea Moisture Leave-In Conditioner has this effect on my hair. So when I wear my hair in a puff, I like to use this product to replenish moisture. I also find that the more I use it, the better my hair feels.
Here’s a picture of my puff after using the Shea Moisture Leave-In regularly. Notice how my curls popped.
The Baggy Method
This is a great way to replenish moisture at night. Spritz your hair with water so it’s slightly damp. You may also want to add a moisturizer of your choice. (Remember, real moisturizers have water listed as one of the first ingredients.)
Cover your hair with a plastic cap while you sleep. Secure the cap with a headband. The water, moisturizer and body heat will help to condition and moisturize your hair overnight.
Will this cause frizz? Yes, it may if you are wearing your hair out. However, the baggy method is a great option for women wearing afros and/or those that don’t mind the frizz.
Go Sulfate Free
Use sulfate-free shampoo products to keep from stripping your hair. Sulfates are harsh detergents that rob your hair of its natural moisture. My favorite line is Giovanni.
Use Hot Oil Treatments
This is one of my favorite pampering routines because it softens my hair so much and brings out its natural sheen.
It’s really good to make a habit of doing this in the winter months because your hair will probably dry out faster.
You can even experiment and develop your own concoctions based on your favorite oils.
Click here to learn how to apply a hot oil treatment.
Spritz With Water
Since water is the best source of moisture for natural hair, a daily dose of it on your strands will help keep your hair supple and soft.
If you’re trying to keep frizz at bay, use a creamy, water-based moisturizer instead. Even though it has more water than any other ingredient, your hair won’t frizz as much because of the creamy consistency.
Don’t Forget to Seal (Especially in Cooler Months!)
I talked about sealants above, but here’s another reminder. After you moisturize your hair, seal it in with a natural oil (olive, jojoba, sweet almond, castor, etc.) or butter (shea, mango, etc.) to help lock in the moisture.
And if you can find a product that has both water and butter, then you may find that it acts as both a moisturizer and a sealant.
Just remember to always add oil or butter after you moisturize. Adding a sealant to dry hair will do nothing but give you a greasy mane with no moisture.
I remember constantly adding jojoba oil to my twists and couldn’t understand why my hair continued to break off. The problem was I wasn’t moisturizing my hair at all.
Oil is not a moisturizer by itself. That’s why people recommend adding a plastic cap with a hot oil treatment. The warmth generated from the oil and plastic cap generates moisture.
The water moisturizes your hair, while the oil seals and conditions with the oil’s natural nutrients. A perfect combo! Who says oil and water don’t mix? 🙂
Sleep With Satin
Sleep in a satin cap or use a satin pillow case to keep your hair from drying out at night. Cotton will soak all the oils out of your hair and can dry it out very quickly.
Drink at least 6-8 glasses of water per day. Not only will water help keep your hair moisturized, but it can help your hair grow at its optimal rate.
Constantly touching your hair will strip the moisture and oils right out of your hair. You can even see the oils on your fingertips.
If you must touch and play in your hair, that’s fine. Just know that you’ll have to moisturize it more often.
Rinse With Apple Cider Vinegar
If you want to add some sheen to your hair, mix one part apple cider vinegar with 3 parts water. (Feel free to adjust the recipe as needed.) Use this as your final rinse when shampooing your hair.
Just be careful because if it gets in your eyes, it will sting. Use an applicator bottle, and tilt your head back while applying it to your hair.
And don’t worry about the vinegar smell. It goes away after a few minutes. I promise you won’t be walking around smelling like salad dressing. 🙂
Not only will this add some sheen, but it can also help with detangling.
It’s best to buy the organic apple cider vinegar that reads “With the Mother” on the label. I buy the Braggs brand from Whole Foods.
Also keep in mind that ACV is very acidic so don’t apply more than once a week.
Cold Water Rinse
I actually combine this tip with the last one. I use cold water and apple cider vinegar as my final rinse to bring out my hair’s natural sheen.
However, if you don’t like to use vinegar, you can just do a cold water rinse by itself. Cold water seals the cuticle and promotes shine.
Don’t Forget Twists and Braids
You may forget to moisturize your hair when it’s up in twists or braids. Don’t fall into this bad habit!
Your hair still needs moisture, if not more! If you don’t, you could suffer from more breakage when you take them down.
Here’s how I moisturize my twists.
Tips for Winter
Don’t neglect your moisturizing routine in the winter. In fact, you need to step it up because your hair will be drier. Here are some tips for keeping your hair moisturized during the colder months.
If Your Hair Doesn’t Retain Moisture…
Struggling with keeping your hair moisturized? You may be surprised at some of the bad habits you’ve developed that can affect how long moisture stays in your hair. Check this out.
Let’s Sum it Up
I know this was a lot to absorb, so let me sum up the key points regarding moisturizing natural hair…
1) Water equals moisture. Yes, it can cause frizz, but it’s what your hair needs to maintain a good moisture level. If you don’t want to use water by itself, buy a creamier moisturizer that has water listed as the first or second ingredient.
2) Use oils and butters after you apply your moisturizer to seal.
3) Using products that contain water and butter can moisturize and seal at the same time.
4) Experiment with products. No one can tell you what specific products will work best on your hair.
5) Kinkier hair often responds better to creamier/thicker moisturizers and sealants.
6) Your hair will be drier during the winter months. You may have to re-apply moisture more often.
7) Moisturize your hair as often as you feel is needed. Everyone’s regimen will be different.
8) Know your hair’s porosity to help with product selection.
Most Popular Moisturizers & Sealants on Amazon.com
|Jane Carter Solution Nourish and Shine||$$||4.5|
|Shea Moisture Shea Butter Leave In||$||4.0|
|KeraCare - Natural Textures Butter Cream||$$||5.0|
|KoKo du lait Daily Leave In Moisturizer||$$||4.0|
|Oyin Hair Dew||$$||4.6|
|As I Am Double Butter Rich Daily Moisturizer, 8 Ounce||$$||4.3|
|Curl Junkie Curl Rehab Moisturizing Hair Treatment||$$||4.5|
|Qhemet Biologics Amla and Olive Heavy Oil Cream||$$$||5.0|
i have Just looking for any ideas/help/suggestions, I wash my hair every 2 weeks I do a co-wash in between. I deep condition, use leave in conditioner, use butter, and seal with oil (for low porosity hair) and shear butter once a week. I do rice water treatment once a month. I also trim every 3 months. My hair is thick and long but still feels dry and brittle and it breaks. My hair breaks easily especially when wet. I don’t know what to do again.
16 oz is way too much yogurt for short hair it’s a waste since baking soda increases volume.
I have 4B/4C hair. What can I use to moisturise it daily without adding water? I usually blow dry it and leave it out during the week so it is a complete pile of dey hay. I tried organic roots oil moisturiser but that can’t survive past a few hours and it feels really heavy on my hair. I just want something I can rub in, in the morning that oils and softens it without adding water and making it shrink
Carolyn Young says
I highly recommend “Jamaican Mango and Lime Leave in Moisturizer”. It is excellent for very dry African hair hair. Use an oil based product as a sealant. There’s no build up and you will be amazed how your dry hair responds to it. It’s great to use as a detangler when combing little girls hair. Just apply it and massage and gently pull the hair. Amazing! I believe this product is sold internationally as instructions on the bottle is in 3 languages.
Wth is African hair?
I have the same issue though I don’t blow dry when it is too much I just do head wrap and go.
I tried shea moisture curl enhancing and I have to spray water otherwise the results are not good. If I can get better ways I will be happy because my hair is dry and shrinks a lot. Looking forward to your help. Thanks
Ms. Wendy Clarke says
I have 4c hair. It is very short. I use minoxidil to grow my hair due traction alopecia. I apply it on my scalp after washing my hair, every night before I go to bed.
In the morning I saturate my hair in cold black and red tea. Then I apply oil plus aqueous cream, then a leave in moisturizer. I place a plastic cap on for 3 hours. My hair is softer.
Every evening, I go to the gym and afterwards chill out in the steam room.p for an hour
My hair is still very dry. Would texturinzing help?
Maybe you could try hair ‘grease’ I found that after I stopped using it my hair is very dry also I plan to go back to using my local products…..my hair is now breaking and has to be trimmed/ cut frequently ( every 1-3 months).
Texturizing will not help and another good method to stop having dry hair is to find out your hair porosity, maybe your hair has low porosity levels.
THIS IS PROBABLY TOO LATE, BUT I THINK YOU SHOULD RECONSIDER USING AQEOUS CREAM AS IT USUALLY CONTAINS HARSH CHEMICALS LIKE ALCOHOL ETC.
I’m trying not to buyou products for financial reasons and just being confused. My game plan is water, oils aloe ver nnd make my own shea butter whip. Is buying products versus using these items better?
Hey, I am a first time real natural. I’m actually really excited to finally get a chance to learn more about my hair. I have seen a lot of great recipes for natural hair but all of them have apple cider vinegar in them and I’m allergic to apples. I was wonder if there is or was another product like it out there because I really want to try them but I also want to keep my hair and skin lol
Yes, decaffeinated green tea or chamomile tea makes a great rinse as well. Good luck! ?
You could also try white vinegar probably this would be a great alternative!
Are the products you recommend also Max Hydration approved?
Yes they are.
Lil Ole Me says
I didn’t read everything but I skimmed through and wow! How brilliant to find someone who ACTUALLY knows what they’re talking about. I will now make the time to read through this article in depth. Well said about the difference between moisturiser and sealant as a LOT of people get this wrong. Using oil alone on your hair when you have problems with dryness (as I do) will just cause it to be brittle. As I am now living in Germany where there are very limited resources for black hair I am now looking at making my own products and trying to style my hair myself as well as learning the science that makes my hair healthy. I’ve read a LOT of blogs and sites as well as scientist and doctor reports to understand how things like conditioners work and why and what ingredients do what and whether to be worried about them. I am so pleased that someone out there actually has a clue, I’ll be keeping an eye on this website and recommending it to others.
Dry 4C says
Thank you for posting this blog…I have been searching for ways to moisturize my dry 4C hair during the summer months and found this blog, which has been quite helpful.
Do you have a recommendation for the best water type to use for dry 4C hair? Some blogs have indicated that distilled water is best; others recommend filtered tap or spring water; others do not mention water types at all. Just wondering if you have any experience with using a certain water type on your hair, and if you can share that experience.
Good read. Thank you very much for sharing all the information to keep our hair healthy. I personally do the hot oil and it works great. I also keep myself hydrated not only for my hair but for my whole body as well. The one thing I miss is sleeping in satin 🙂 I better try this one.
I’ve just finished my first seven days on the max hydration method and there is such a big difference in my hair now. It’s a long process and can seems a bit tedious but the results are worth it I think. This was the first article i read when i was looking for ways to deal with my dry hair so thanks for the information.
Mary Ware says
Love your natural hair remedies for dry hair. They are absolutely fantastic stuff and it really works as I have experienced. Bur apart from that I will add a moisturizing shampoo that along with the natural remedies produces an optimal results for dry, brittle and dull hair. I use Avocado, coconut oil and apple cider vinegar along with my favorite GKhair moisturizing shampoo to better play with my dry, brittle, dull and weak hair that are prone to fall and break so easily. But this composition put a new life and look in my dry and dull hair.
is white vinegar good to rinse hair with after shampooing?
well for example iv been going natural for 4 years now and my hair type is a 4c i have recently washed my hair last week on a Friday and id blow dried it etc i had box braids n my hair as well iv been moisturizing my hair because it tends to het dry i use Castro oil, and magic jack a grease. but iv been trying to have protected styles on my hair and my hair has been snapping and shedding do you know any way to stop the damage of it snapping what im going to do today is cuting the ends probably the split ends and see
Does this process work for locked hair?
I have a couple of issues :
1. When I use creamy conditioners for some reason it sits on the top of my hair. Any advice on what I’m doing wrong?
2. When I wash my hair it seems like the water also just sits in my hair as well. am I using too much water lol.
It sounds like you have low porosity hair. Instead of doing the LOC method, try LCO. I had the same problem and that’s how I solved it!
Invaluable information. Thanks a mil Lisa. Much blessings to you!!
You’re welcome Avril!
I read your blog about moisturizing and sealing natural hair. I’m a 4b 4c natural sistah and Ibwas wondering is it necessary to use the Loc method or just can I narrow it down and use your method which is water (moisturizer) and a great sealant. I am looking for quicker alternative to cut down unnesssary steps to doing my twa daily.
Thanks in advance
Hi. I have had my short kinky hair in box braids for too many years . My hair has been damaged through lack if care from me. Now I’m going natural and would like some advice. My hair is thicker at the root and then finer as it grows longer.
I wear my hair in short twist. For work I wrap it in a scarf (silk scarf underneath)
At night I wear a silks scarf also
I wash my hair every 1-2 weeks (palmers coconut oil shampoo and conditioner). I deep condition every 1-2 (palmers coconut oil protein conditioner )
After washing I twist my damp hair using JCO
Daily I use African pride she butter leave in conditioner.
I use a little JCO on my edges 3 times a week as they have broken badly with the braiding.
So my question is …….am I doing this right? Am I missing any steps / products to encourage healthy natural hair growth?
P.s I drink plenty of water. Eat a good variety of fruit and vegetables and I also take a daily complete vitamin and minerals tablet
Beauty Famoriyo says
You could be getting too much protein from the deep conditioner. If your hair was badly damaged from before, it will take a pretty long time for it to recuperate. Try cowashing more often instead of shampooing. If you still seeing no results seek more rejuvenating treatments or medical attention like Rogaine.
Hair naturally gets thinner at the ends as it gets longer due to natural wear and tear because the ends are the oldest parts. But if the ends are noticeably thinner than the rest of your hair there are a few things that might be happening.:
1. Too much manipulation of the ends have caused split ends which lead to breakage. Check to see if you have lots of split ends and trim if needed.
2. Your hair might be dry even though you wash and deep condition weekly and moisturize daily. If your leave-in does not have water as 1st ingredient you probably are not really getting the right amount of moisture. Try moisturizing with water then use your leave-in.
3. Too much buildup on the ends. This can block moisture from getting in, so every now and then (like once a month) try clarifying with a sulfate shampoo or ACV rinse.
Hope this helps!
Sorry put comment in website. Wen is Great. It does even the width of the hair from root to end. I find it hard to moisturize my hair without build up. I have tried alot if products. Kinky curly was one. Leaves flakes. Shea butter milk and curl enhancer does the same. I need a daily moisturizer. My hair is oily yet no sheen. Use coconut oil castor oil with Vita E. Scalp moisture. Spray with aloe Vera juice water and smiggin tea tree oil. Help. Need names solutions
I have tried almost every “natural” product and hopefully you can help me with this problem. EVERY PRODUCT IS TURNING MY HAIR WHITE!! No matter how much I massage it through or how little I use it leaves my hair white. Leading me to believe my scalp is barely being moisturized, instead its on my actual hair. Yet my hair ALWAYS seems dry.
20 yr old
med natural hair style
Thank you in advance for your response(s) and help!
What kind of natural products are you using? Because there are so many products out there that it’s hard to believe you have used them all. Granted, you probably tried a lot of products, but not even a product junkie that has tried almost all of them would claim that not one worked, and/or caused the same results over, and over again. If you used almost every product, such as natural oils and butters, then you shouldn’t always experience the “white cast” effect. For example, natural oils such as Olive, Avocado, and so forth don’t leave a “white cast” in your hair. However, if not properly rinsed out or thoroughly melted, Coconut Oil is the only oil (I know of) that will leave a white residue. And this is due to the fact that it reverts back to it’s original form ——– a solid. Solution: make sure you rinse Coconut Oil out thoroughly (or until it feels less oily). Other great alternatives of Coconut Oil (solid) is the liquid or Pure Fractionated version of Coconut Oil, Coconut Milk or Coconut Water.
Furthermore, just because your hair LOOKS dry doesn’t mean your hair IS dry. For instance, in order to know if my hair is moisturized, I feel it. And by that, I mean, feeling how soft or rough it is. If it feels soft, then it’s moisturize. But if it feels rough, then it means my hair is dry. Anyway, here’s a solution: to combat dryness, Blend the following ingredients in a spray bottle: 1/2 cup of Purified Water, 1/2 cup of Aloe Vera Juice, 1/4 cup of Coconut Milk (or Water), 2 tablespoons of Raw Honey (or 1 tablespoon of Glycerin), 1 teaspoon of Shea Oil, Avocado Oil, and whatever other natural oil you prefer. If you don’t have an old hair spray bottle laying around the house, you can buy one from Sally’s Beauty (online or in store), or your local beauty supply store. And by the way, you can buy the ingredients from iherb, Vitacost, Luckyvitamins, etc. Also, I try the LOC and/or baggy method too. These methods help combat dry hair too.
However, if your hair continues to feel dry no matter what you use, then it’s a sign that your hair needs to be cleansed. It may sound backwards, but when your hair doesn’t seem to absorb any of the products you’re applying, clarifying shampoos are necessary to remove the severe build-up of product, dirt, and oil in order for your strands to absorb moisture. Sometimes moisturizing shampoos or cleansing conditioners do not cleanse effectively enough. To clarify the hair, try using the following products: Giovanni Triple Tree or Deep Moisture Shampoo, Bentonite Clay (mix with Apple Cider Vinegar, Coconut Milk, Avocado Oil, Shea Oil or Butter (Melted), or a favorite conditioner), or a mild shampoo, such as, baby shampoos. tresemme, suave, or use the pre-poo method before using a shampoo. All can be found at the same sites (i.e. iherb) I mentioned earlier.
Oh, btw, if the natural products you already own is full of nutrients, then you could just mix it with the Purified Water, Raw honey, Aloe Vera, Shea Oil and/or Avocado Oil. Moreover, check and make sure your natural products contain Water. It should be the 1st ingredient listed. If it isn’t, then this is why your hair is dry. Just like you need water to be hydrated, your hair needs water to be moisturize.
Thanks Nia, for taking the time to share this information. It is sincerely appreciated.
One last thing, sorry for the long response. Lol, I didn’t realize how long my comment would look until I submitted it, But it seems that you may need to wash your hair because it makes no sense that every natural product gives your hair a ghostly look, lol! Or you’re blending products that don’t work well together. Anyway, I hope these methods will help solve or reduce your problem. Good luck!
Yeah, like Nia suggested, you may need to clarify your hair. Basically, wash your hair of impurities. Or you have low porosity hair, which is prone to product build up because the cuticles are closed. To help the hair absorb product, do the baggy method; once or twice a week — after moisturizing hair, put on a plastic cap, and let sit for 1 hour if you’re using heat, or if no heat, let sit for 2 (or 3) hours. Then, allow the hair to air dry. Oh, and do the baggy method on days you don’t have anywhere important to go. You need to allow the hair to dry.
And once the hair feels slightly dry, re-apply moisturizer, but this time apply a leave in conditioner (or dilute a conditioner you already own), and then seal the ends with a heavy oil, such as, Castor Oil. If Castor Oil seems too thick/stiff, pour 1/2 (or 1/4) Castor Oil into a cup mix with 2 tablespoons of water. The water thins it out, and makes it easier to glide down the hair.
I thought I was the only person with this problem!!! It goes from white when wet to ASHY and DRY when dry!! I have been using Knot Today leave in and Gel with the MHM. While my hair is WET…it looks AMAZING!!! AS SOON AS IT DRIES….it looks/feels like RAMIEN NOODLES!!
I have NO IDEA how to add SOFTNESS & SHEEN to my horribly dry hair!! I’m SERIOUSLY considering going back to THE CREAMY CRACK!! I HATE Athens way my hair looks and feels!!!
HOW DO I FIX IT?????
You probably have low porosity and have to use heat to infuse your products into the hair cuticles.
♥ Best I have ever used is Pro Naturals ♥ ; )
Alinda Reyes says
Hello, I just discovered the CLT and am currently sitting with a plastic cap and getting ready to rinse. I have 2 questions:
1, I have quite a bit of the mixture left, can I keep it and for how long?
2. I am not sure what to do after I deep condition, is there a particular process I should do other than seal?
PS: I will not be doing the MHT. I cant imagine anyone having that kind of time.
I wouldn’t keep it for two long and since you have to wait 6 weeks for the next treatment, I wouldn’t keep it that long. After I deep condition, I moisturize then seal.
Also my hair is so dry and dull and there are so many different products out there I’m kinda confused. I’m wondering if I should use a leave in conditioner, also I’m wondering if I should use raw Shea butter. Now I only use coconut oil for moisture and Eco gel for the curls. What do u suggest for my kinky, dry 4 c hair?
Stop using the gel for a while, gels tend to have alcohol which dry out hair. Do a hot oil treatment or a prepoo treatment before you wash, then wash with a sulfate free shampoo, use a deep conditioner, put a plastic cap on and sit under a dryer for 20-30 min or if you don’t have one wrap a towel around the plastic cap to keep the heat in. Rinse with lukewarm or cool water. Then apply a leave in conditioner and make sure to smooth it throughout your hair, apply your favorite oil in the same manner, then apply a smaller amount of a thicker butter or oil (like shea butter or castor oil) to seal (This is a version of the LOC method, but it makes more sense to put your water based leave in first, and then use an oil and a heavier butter to seal it in)
Hi, I just did a big chop and I think my hair is type 4c. It’s really dry and dull. I want to kno how often I should wash it- my friend recommended co washing every week but using a shampoo every month. What do u think
Co wash once a week and wash with the shampoo once a month
a co-worker told me to use the Aloe Vera plant to thicken my hair and so far its been great
Hi, I’m new to being natural and I’m a lil confused on to shampoo or not and if so how often. I co-wash with Tresseme moisturizing conditioner, but not sure on how often to do that either. I Greenhouse every night with water, Shea Moisture leave in and seal with Olive oil before I put on my shower cap, scarf and satin bonnet.
I have not washed now for two weeks. At this point what should I do to cleanse and how often?
P.S. I recently had my hair professionally high lighted to bring more color to my dark hair.
I’ve been natural since January 2015, my hair is a Lo-po, I’ve been using Design Natural Curl Enhancer Mouse and Design Natural Honey after my turn into a small afro. I only wash my hair q 2wks.. My crown and edges are thin, it is soft and fine, I am also taking BP meds. I am not sure if my hair is 4C or a 3. I just want my hair to grow, enhance my natural curl and for my hair not to turn into a afro.
Not everyone’s hair will be curly. It may be more kinky or frizzy depending on your texture and curl pattern. For example I can get more curls with certain pudding or gel products but it is only temporary. If your hair turns into an afro that’s what your natural hair does and it’s hard to change what it wants to do naturally. But as I said there are temporary solutions with gels and puddings.
Can i use aloe vera gel for the 5th step? Or do i need a curly pudding if i dont have the type of gel u suggested? Thanks ?
You can but you won’t get that same hold.
This website is the truth! Everything u need to know about stopping dryness in one spot.
Constance C. says
I had typed in Natural Hair Moisturizers and I am really happy that I found your website. It has been very informative and I plan to try using your your information on my hair. My hair is real soft and a little wavy and it dries out very fast.
Thanks for your info, I really appreciate it
I am currently about 3 months into transitioning, but I am not sure that I got off on the right track. I was washing my hair twice a week for the first two months (no pre-poo, but I would mix oils, like coconut, almond, jojoba, etc and shea butter and sleep with it before I washed my hair. I used a small amount of apple cider vinegar with water as the shampoo and Aussie Moist for the conditioner. I would leave the Aussie moist in and Use their Leave in conditioner as a daily moisturizer.) I know this may sound crazy, but I didn’t deep condition my hair al all, but things seemed alright. But then, a few weeks ago, I started loosing A LOT of hair, bulb and all, not much breakage (probably because my last perm was about 2 years ago, but there is a lot of heat damage and as of now half of my hair wants to curl and the other half doesn’t and it tangles SO easy.) I have stopped washing my hair as often because that may be the cause of my hair loss, but I am not sure. My hair is so hard to manage as of right now, but I wont give up on being natural. I just have limited options as far as styling because I am in the military. I am just really glad that I have come across your page! I think this may be my saving grace. I am going to order some new products and put more time into working on my hair.
I just had a few questions:
Should I continue to use the ACV as my shampoo or should I try to find something else?
How much oil and conditioner do you use for your pre-poo?
Do you alternate pre-pooing and co-washing? How do you go about that?
I ask because I see that you should deep condition weekly. Should I do it weekly or Bi weekly? When I do that should I follow Pre-poo, shampoo, deep conditioner, then moisturizer and sealant. If so where would co-washing and normal conditioning fall?
Why are you using vinegar as a cleaner? It’s been proven that it doesn’t clarify or cleanse. It closes the cuticle which is the opposite of what you want if you’re trying to get hair clean. It also becomes damaging if used for too long. You need shampoo. Shea moisture has tons of them. For the shedding try tea rinses or garlic shampoo/conditioner. Also MSM is known to lengthen the hairs growth phase which equals less shedding.
Bicarbonate of Soda is used for cleansing, some people people use it with their shampoo others with their conditioner when co washing and others just add water to it. The Thing is, clean your scalp and not hair strand. condition your hair strands and not your scalp. As you rinse the cleanser goes to the hair and conditioner goes to the scalp as well.
ACV is used to close the hair shaft so that the moisture doesn’t go out.it, use of cold water (coldest that you can stand) also has the same impact since AVC can be damaging to hair if used
to much. Stop using the ACV as a shampoo. Buy a low sulfate shampoo or use a regular conditioner to cleans your hair.
Stop mixing the oils, use one oil for a month or so then you can change this way you can know if the oils you are mixing for pre-poo are not causing the hair fall.
Deep condition your hair weekly even if its for 5 minutes, its a huge benefit for the hair that has already grown.
washing the hair has nothing to do with hair falling but , your regimen or products used or diet can be.
And if you are transitioning and still have a lot of relaxed hair you should know that dealing with 2 different texture is much harder for most people, so I would suggest you start trimming or cut it off.
Thank you so much. I just finished the final step & my hair is GORGEOUS! You are God-Sen!!! I do have one question though. To keep from purchasing the ingredients so frequent, can I conserve and reuse the ingredients in step 3? And if so, how should it be conserved? Thanks.
You sure can. You can put the clay in the fridge and then add some warm water to re-activate. So glad this worked for you!!!
I use shea curl and shine shampoo and conditioner my hair looks good when I first rinse it out and for the next 2-3 days. I have some somewhat silly questions like should i be wetting my hair everyday in the shower and after i rinse out the conditioner what can i add into my hair to keep it moisturized. Normally my hair will start to not feel dry but look dry 5 days after washing it should i be washing it more often or moisturizing somehow
Your questions are not silly at all. Everyone’s hair retains moisture differently so you’ll be able to tell by how it feels. Some people spritz their hair lightly with a water bottle that has water and some kind of oil to keep their hair moisturized. But depending on your curl pattern and type, this may cause frizz. Others use a heavier, thicker moisturizer every 3-4 days. So it depends on what works for you. But generally you don’t need to wet your hair everyday. But if it looks and feels dry you should definitely moisturize it.
I can only speak from experience. I do not shampoo at all, co-washing takes the place of shampooing for me. I do not know what pre-pooing is, but I try to detangle with oil and water first, or a conditioner then co-wash. The article suggests rinsing with ACV and water to lock in moisture. After co-washing then I deep condition, which I do weekly. Then I follow the LOC method, which is Leave-in, Oil and then Cream. Cream for me is what I use to style.
The LOC method is explained here http://www.naturallycurly.com/curlreading/kinky-hair-type-4a/loc-method-the-routine-every-curly-should-know/.
I hope this helps. Good luck
Hey! Can I use the cherry Lola treatment on my dyed hair ??
Angela Williams says
Did big chop 9 -months ago hair breakage so start over 3 times I cowash,use deep conditions,use daily moisture products hair has breakage on the side I sleep on use satin cap HELP
Hi Angela! From one Angela to another, I think I get it. I did the big chop about five months ago. Everyone I talk to tells me it really takes a year to see real change and growth. You may be putting too much product in your hair too often. I started out doing daily moisturizing with deep conditioner and just ended up with breakage and crunchy hair. Then I started getting twist outs at salons that seemed to help with less dryness but that resulted in breakage as well (and this was happening at the salon!) too time consuming and expensive. I have an experienced, caring lady who has shown me professional secrets. One is before you wash your hair, cover it with conditioner and let it sit for 20 minutes with plastic cap on. Amazing detangler and moisturizer and a lot less hair loss. Finger comb gently as opposed to brushing or combing rigorously. Then wash and condition with natural products-Shea moisture shampoo and conditioner. Then use the liquid, oil and creme combination to moisturize and seal in moisture. While hair is wet, put on oil by rubbing small amount on hands and massaging into hair. Then use a creamy leave in conditioner. After that I apply Miss Jessie Quick Curls then shake my head so curls clump together. My hair looks like I have a twist out but without all the hair dryer time and expense. I end up air drying and having softer, more natural curls that bring out my natural curl pattern and texture. I do this only every 5-7 days. Every morning I lightly most with water and lightly hand brush to wake up the curls. Hope this helps. Love, Angela
I recently bleached my hair blonde and one day out of no where the crown of my head had severely broken off. Any suggestions on what to do. I’m thinking of cutting it but I really don’t want to. What can I do to grow it back and also any suggestions on hiding it. I’m always having a problem with tiny knots and split ends. HELP!!!!;(
My hair is type 4 btw. I think 4a/4b and in the crown it seems to be 4c because I don’t really have a noticeable curl pattern there
Correction! I should have said, For the person that had chemotherapy, not leukemia. I am sorry! I miss read the article.
Before apply anything harsh to hair, please consult with your doctor. Several years ago, a lady applied a relaxer after chemotherapy and it burned her scalp. She was warned by the doctor; but, she let someone put in the relaxer without waiting the proper amount of time. I hope this info helps.
Now! As for me, I like to know how to thicken the top of my head. I have been taking vitamins such as iron, B-Complex, B12, C and D. My hair is improving. I have only been doing this for five months. I cannot use too much oil or my scalp will break out with bumps.
For the lady recovering from leukemia, please be cautions regarding chemical in hair. With some cancer patience, the chemicals can burn the scalp, and the hair follicles will be damaged. Hopefully, the doctor informed you regarding chemicals. I am not sure about texturizers.
I am Niki from Haiti. I just did the big chop. My hair gets dried so fast. I really want it to grow fast.
Please help me. What are your advice to keep it moisturized? and Healthy?
I tried the Lola cola treatment and it broke my hair off…I had to cut it all off and start over….I had my hair dyed 4 months prior…I’m pretty sure it was the baking soda and and prior chemicals in my hair…you should include an FYI with the Lola treatment
I do have a warning about the baking soda straightening the hair but will make the notice more prominent. That’s the tricky thing about hair recipes. Everyone’s hair behaves differently. Sorry that happened to you.
Athena Douglas says
I really appreciate the information on how to take care of my kinky natural hair. I bought a lot of Shea products because I wasn’t sure what my hair type was. Now I know because of you. I would like to know if it matters what type of shampoo to use on type 4c hair? Thank you so much!!!
Hi Athena, try to find shampoos that are rich and say “moisturizing.” And of course get sulfate free.
Hi Lisa, my hair is ‘”lopo”. You listed Qhemet Biologics Amla & Olive Heavy Cream as “some of the best rated natural hair moisturizers”, but you also stated that if the moisturizer didn’t have water as a first or second ingredient that it wasn’t a real moisturizer…Qhemet Biologics Amla & Olive don’t list water at all…how would this help my lopo hair? Thank you!
Great point, Pat. And actually Jane Carter technically isn’t either but both JC and Qhemet work really well on damp hair. They are sealants. So when you apply them to your hair with water (damp hair) they really do a good job of holding that moisture (water) in for a long time. I should modify that paragraph because it is confusing. Thanks for making me aware.
This was all very helpful and useful information- thank you so much for taking the time to share!! You really are quite knowledgeable in natural hair care, and I can’t wait to try some of the new tips that I picked up in reading your page. Thank you again!
Hello, I’ve been transitioning for about 6 months now and its getting really tough. At this point its really hard to comb, its super dry, and my edges are thinning. I don’t want to give lol. I really need some advice. I use Crème of nature shampoo and conditioner and leave in conditioner. Well its all right but it does give me moisture but it doesn’t stay.. I believe my hair type is 4c.One time I used the 2 eggs and leave in conditioner and Herbal oil ( I didn’t have olive oil) home made remedy. I believe my natural hair loved it and it had some shine and it was kinda soft and I could see some of my natural hair curl. But the next day it was back dry. I really need some help.
Managing two different hair textures z not easy. You should try keeping your hair braided for about two weeks or even 3/4 Two strand twists, three strand plaits, braids or cornrows which are much better for people who work and have certain company policies. Don’t neglect your hair, just keep the period between your comb and hair longer. Protective styles will help you get through the transitioning phase much easier.
Thinning edges could be a sign that your hair is being pulled to tight or touched to much. Remember hair is protein and every time you touch and style and etc, the protein is lost. .Use olive oil and crushed garlic for as long as its needed. this will promote hair growth and strengthen whats left.
Dryness can mean too much or too little protein or moisture or to much manipulation of the hair, so to tackle that, wear your hair out less to reduce the # of times you comb.
When you use a protein treatment (eggs etc) follow with a deep conditioner that has moisturizing as the main objective. Keep the protein and moisture level balanced.
Deep condition every week with or without a protective style.
Use protein treatments once a month, but follow with a deep cond.
Use steam or wrap a plastic on your head while deep cond. use cold water to rinse.
Spray water on your hair daily or every other day.
Don’t use to much shampoo when washing the hair.
There are so many things on this site and on the net that can help but whats important is finding what works for your hair. keep a journal if you like, to track down what works and what doesn’t work.
and drink lots of what
Hope this helps
Hi, Angela! I’d suggest doing twist or braid outs for a while. Try setting with water and some sort of pomade. I’m not against the oils – not at all – but mostly I don’t find them to hold moisture very long or soften all that well. As I Am deep conditioner is a little pricey – it’ll run you around $16 and only has a few applications in it – but it helped me get out of breakage mode when I first went natural.
Keep your twist or braid out no more than two days, then re-wet and re-braid or twist. I find that the cumulative effect of keeping the hair soft, moisturized and sorted is what matters. That’s when you’re going to retain your growth and whatever you have now will be enjoyable.
Hi i just recently big chopped so im not 100% sure what my hair texture is. i have about 2-3 inches of hair all around and after washing my hair and doing the LOC method i notice coils starting to form, and their pretty tight in most places and sometimes they only form at the ends in others. When i look at my hair in full view though i have a lot of hair that isnt curled at all – just frizzy., kind of like a fro but not really. Is there any way i can get my curls to start forming uniformly all around my head. I understand if i need to wait a few more months for more hair but i really dont like this half curly, half frizz/fro look.
Also Im kind of thinking it could be from still having straight ends because sometimes i notice that sometimes my shed hair is really straight, no curl at all. What do you think?
You may still have some scab hair so it could conform over time. Keep conditioning your hair regularly. Also remember we all have different textures so it could be that part of your head as a different texture. My crown is a lot less curly (more frizzy) than my back. It’s always been that way. With everyone’s hair being different it’s hard to answer with certainty.
Not sure about the straight hairs to be honest.
Hi Mikayla. Your hair sounds like my hair. I had a bald spot and my hair grew back. My hair is tapered and 4c, although I don’t hair type. I maintain moisture in my hair for 2-3 days before having to remoisturize again.
I use a no poo for cleansing with 3 drops of Dr. Bronner’s 18 n 1 Hemp peppermint. I deep condition and steam for 30 mins. Rinse with cool water moisturizer, 2 strand twist with a Bantu knot. I keep pretty good definition thru the day. I re twist/ Bantu knot with water in bigger sections.
I wash weekly, recently changed twice a week. I like it better because I have less build up on my hair and I get better definition.
Thinking out loud and wanted to share.
I hope this helps,
This was the most definitive overview on keeping grade 4 hair moisturizered that I’ve ever read. I’ve been natural since 1999 at 19 and have kept a fade, but for once, I am going to grow it out and honestly, it seems so intimidating. There wasn’t any info really out there in the late 90’s when I big chopped, now there is a plethora but I must say., this overview packs a punch and was full of information for someone like me.
Wishing you well!!!
Keep educating and blessing 🙂
I agree! Information has come a long way and I applaud you for rockin’ your natural hair even before it was “the thing to do” and more socially acceptable. Good for you!
Gigi Griggs says
Can you tell me what’s the best way to figure out what my curl pattern is, and what I can do to change it… i.e. I want looser curls, and my curls are very tight… although more wavy than a full curl in areas where the hair is longer… I’m new to this natural stuff. I had chemotherapy and my hair feel out, what grew back isn’t kinky, but VERY curly… I want to keep the natural look, but with a looser curl. Can you give me any tips, advice?
Thanks so much!
There is no way to change or loosen your curls. Sometimes when you wear your hair in a stretched style for a long time, your hair will temporarily loosen up but there is no way to permanently alter your curl pattern. It’s very common to have different textures throughout your hair.
You can loosen your curl pattern with Brazilian Keratin Treatments. You can try:
1. Silk Elements
These products aren’t permanent but they are all very different from the other so I would do a little research to see which one would work best for you. Check out this review
Another option is to texlax your hair. the procedure involves using relaxer but only for a minimal amount of time to loosen the curl. If you choose this option I would use a mild relaxer.
Henna is yet another way to loosen the curl pattern and it makes your hair look fuller and healthier. Use Body Art quality Henna if you choose this option. Regular hair henna contains heavy metals that could damage your hair.
Hope this info helps. Good luck!
This is my personal experience only!
The results I got from kitchen remedies were uneven and mostly disappointing given the expense, hassle, and short shelf life. Right now, I use either Pantene’s cowash or Tropic Isle’s Castor Oil shampoo for regular use, and occasionally I wash with Dr. Bronner’s Peppermint liquid soap to stimulate the scalp and get the cowash residue off it. Overall, I suggest finding a good routine that minimizes moisture loss (cowash or get some kind of water on your hair at least three times a week) and use a good pomade or oil to soften the hair so that it bends instead of breaks. The idea of “sealing” moisture in with oil is one that I’ve found to be illusory at best. “Sealed” at 1:00 p.m. is just “dry and greasy” by 4:00.
Finally, I found that maintaining the integrity of the hair helps it be less porous and less susceptible to drying out. For me, that means no combing! I finger smooth with Tropic Isle Coconut Castor oil on my fingertips and separate the hair that way. I only do this when the hair is dry – wet handling leads to a lot of stretching and later breakage. I also keep the use of curling puddings, custards, soufflees, caviars, mousses or whatever they call them to get the highest price – to a minimum. I have yet to find one that doesn’t have a drying effect on the hair after a day or so. I just use water and pomade on my hair to set twist-outs.
It’s a cumulative thing, really. No matter what I used, I never went from dry hair to moist and fab thanks to one treatment. Hope some of this helps. Good luck.
Hi Jill! I’d love to find out more about your routine and your experience seems really similar to mine. Though I’ve only been wearing the twa for three weeks I’m really frustrated with the dryness and breakage and feel like I spend all day every couple of hours wetting it just to have the same result an hour or two later. I’ve used and spent a ton on Design Essentials leave in conditioner, design essentials hydrating moisturizer with Argan oil, coconut oil Shea mousse, Eco. I’m so frustrated I’m considering getting it flat ironed and giving up.
Do you have any recs? I love my curls and curl pattern but can’t take the dryness and breakage.
Hey, Angela! I feel a big part of going natural is getting used to the feel of your hair on your fingertips. Looking back, what I thought was “dry” when I was growing my hair out really wasn’t – it was just different than relaxed hair. Try the finger smoothing I talked about! I cannot emphasize enough how completely that changed my hair – in length, manageability, and texture.
Very well stated, Jill. We often get dry and “just our hair” mixed up when we’re newly natural. Some of that comes from assuming natural hair is supposed to be shiny. Not everyone can get shiny hair… Sheen, yes. But some textures don’t shine because they don’t reflect light as well as straighter hair. Very great point.
Hi my name is Rennae. My hair has been breaking badly for over a year now and I tried all types of anti breakage oils and creams and one is yet to work. So I would like to start treating my hair with home remedies such as eggs, olive oil and honey to stop the breakage and dandruff. I would like to know if I should apply the egg mask once a week or every other day. I recently stopped straightening my hair (6months ago) and I would like to know what hair moisturizer products I should start using since I am going natural now. I was thinking Shea moisturizer products. Is that a good choice? Please help a sista out! Thanks so much..
Th breakage is usually caused by too little or too much moisture or proteins. If you want to use the eggs (protein) i would advice you to use it once a month then gradually reducing to once every two months. After every protein treatment follow up with a moisturizing treatment. Deep condition your hair every week for 30 to 45 minutes.
What ever you choose to do, just remember, too much or too little of either protein or moisture will make your hair dry then it will break.
You can also spritz your hair with water daily to add moisture in between your wash days.
Hope this helps 🙂
Get some hair vitamins
Alice Humphrey says
Hi I like what I see on your page, but how can I grow my hair back in the top of my head. I like for my hair to get thicker. What should I do?
Can I replace the yogurt w/ sour cream ?
I prefer Pro Naturals