Shampoo Update 2017

Happy New Year All! I was settling, but not completely satisfied with the Aveda Rosemary Mint shampoo. I am still going to use it because it is the most non-irritating shampoo I’ve used. Well, that is, until yesterday.

So I decided to do a little bit more digging on the surfactants/detergents in shampoo. This is ongoing research for me, but I decided to venture back in to see if there was more detailed information. And there was. I found it on Curly Nikki’s website. I didn’t go directly to her site, but used Google, and a link to this article popped up. I was searching for shampoo for sensitive scalp, but this one on shampoo for dry natural hair was on the return results list. I won’t go into detail because all of the information is contained within the article, but I can say that this helped me select a different shampoo.

nosulfates

I have found that after being a serious product junkie that my scalp had become super sensitive. I’ve had severe dry scalp, sore spots on my scalp, and some hair loss — from cheap sulfates!! When I use anything with SLS/SLES or Sodium C12-14 Olefin Sulfonate, Sodium C14-16 Olefin Sulfonate, I have an instant reaction. As soon as my hair dries, my scalp is dry and within a day or two my scalp is itchy, and then a few more days out, my scalp is itchy and has sore spots. When I attempted to do no-poo (with Wen and many other cleansing conditioners) the same thing happened.

I decided to go back to Aveda brand shampoo. I first purchased their Scalp Benefits formula, but that made my scalp dry and itchy (see the ingredients list). And then I moved on to the Rosemary Mint. This shampoo significantly reduced my symptoms, and it’s actually supposed to be a clarifying shampoo. I thought that using it once a week would dry my hair out, but it doesn’t. And as I mentioned in a previous post, my scalp seems to prefer watered down sulfates. I still get the itchies with Rosemary Mint, but it’s nothing like the severe reaction I get with the other shampoos. That is, on a scale of 1 to 10, Rosemary Mint is about a 2-3 by wash day. But I think that this is only part of the story.

After reading the article on Curly Nikki’s site, I ran out and purchased Not Your Mother’s  Naturals Tahitian Gardenia Flower & Mango Butter Curl Defining Shampoo . I really don’t like fruity body care products, but I decided to give this a shot. I purchased this because of the mild cleansers. Mild doesn’t mean that this won’t get your hair clean. It means that it is less likely to irritate your scalp. I would usually wait until I’ve used a product for four washes before I post, but after my first wash, I could tell that this was going to work. I have not experienced any burning or itching so far. I will definitely be able to confirm by Saturday.

I purchased a Ouidad brand shampoo with C14-16 cleanser — I knew that I should not have because the Organix brand uses this cleanser, and it always dried my hair out, and irritated my scalp. But because Ouidad is supposed to be great for curly heads, I decided to risk it. Well, it didn’t work, ha! So, I exchanged it for the Ouidad Climate Control Defrizzing shampoo . I was simply going to return the Ultra Nourishing formula, but I noticed that the Climate Control formula contains some of the milder surfactants. So I will try that one next, and let you know how it goes.

I’m not that thrilled about how my curls turned out with the Not Your Mother’s, but if my scalp is inflamed and not healthy, it’s not going to matter too much anyway, so I’m sticking with it! All of this is connected to my slow hair growth! Ugh!

I may simply rotate these with the Rosemary Mint. But I first have to try the Ouidad!

Did this post help you? It’s taken me about five years to figure all of this out, and I am surprised that I’m not bald. Let me know.

 

Natural Black Hair Regimen 2013

Indie Black Hair 2013

Indie Black Hair 2013

So, I haven’t done an update on my hair regimen in a long time. In fact, I don’t know if I’ve even done a regimen post. I think I have, but I can’t remember, ha!

Anyway, let’s get to it. I still use a lot of products, but there are some that have been staples since I learned how to take care of my natural texture.

Keep in mind, I live in Chicago (extreme cold/hot/humid.) This regimen is pretty consistent throughout the changes in weather.

Styler: Kinky Curly Curling Custard
I can’t live without this stuff. I love it, love it, love it. I don’t think I will try to make my own, ever. I just don’t think it could compare. I do, however, keep track of how much I use by marking the lid with the month and year. I get the jumbo jar which is pricey ($29.99). Target sells a smaller jar ($17.99), but it doesn’t make economic sense–unless you have an emergency. Every time I think I am going to try something less expensive, or make my own, as soon as I get to that last, snotty drop I am racing to the store for another jar. Shame.

Leave-in: Jessicurl Deep Conditioning Treatment (formerly Weekly Deep Treatment) I layer this over a lighter leave-in. This stuff is magic.

Light Leave-in: DevaCurl One I stopped using this for a few years because they changed the formula. But I’ve started using it again, and I haven’t had any adverse effects.

Sealant:  Homemade Coconut Oil blend  ( This recipe is based on naptural85’s coconut oil moisturizer .) Using a hand mixer, I blend coconut oil, shea butter, castor oil, olive oil, jojoba oil, rosemary essential oil, and jasmine essential oil (you can choose your own essential oils, but use sparingly because of the scalp.) Sometimes I will add grape seed or argan oil to the blend it depends on what I have on hand. Just enough to coat the strands, otherwise you will have an oil slick all over your ears and neck.

Shampoo: This has been a complicated one. I am currently using Terressentials lavender or left coast lemon. Now, I have a love-hate relationship with this clay cleanser. I LOVE the results, but my scalp hates the stuff, so I rotate this out ( I use the Terressentials every third or fourth wash) with As I Am cleansing pudding,  which I just started using. The cleansing pudding has an ingredient, piroctone olamine, which is known to be a great scalp cleanser, and to promote growth. It is a little drying, so I do a short deep condition( with Tresemme Naturals condish–I put a lot of this in my hair, and then briefly run it under the shower stream to activate, and then I detangle with my fingers, or a shower comb.) After I detangle, I leave it in, place a plastic cap over my head, finish my shower duties, take the cap off, and then rinse it out.

BTW: I use the Teri Laflesh method to wash my hair. Her website was the first one that I found when I began to research how to take care of my hair. I spent years trying to figure out how to wear my hair natural (Whew, I don’t miss the birds nest days, or people calling me Macy Gray, I like her, but I don’t look anything like her. But we know what that’s about…)

I would love to find a really moisturizing shampoo for my scalp, but I am going to ride this As I Am cleansing pudding thing until the wheels fall off. Every time I use shampoo it dries my hair out–it just isn’t the same. And some alternative sulfates are more drying/stripping than regular sulfates. The day will come…

I started working with ph a few months ago, and it has done wonders for my hair. This means that I try to use products that range between 4.5-5.5. I use the Terressentials with Aubrey Organics White Camellia conditioner. This feels really weird. BUT the Terressentials is really alkaline( maybe 9 or 10 on the ph scale? But it’s a solid, so I am not sure), which means that it opens up the hair shaft, and then fills it with moisture. When I put the AOWC on it feels really squeeky, which means that it is very acidic and that it’s closing the cuticle. I rinse this out, and then put the DevaCurl one in (acidic at 4.7.) I get fabulous hair when I use these two products together. Confusing, right? Well, the last leave-in/conditioner I put on my hair is acidic (between 4.5-5.5).

The Natural Haven has a ph list for both conditioners and shampoos.

WARNING: Don’t ever try to use the AOWC on it’s own( as a leave-in or co-wash–don’t do it!!) because it will tangle your hair big time. SERIOUSLY. I learned this the hard way.

Product Lines I dabble in:

Curl Junkie: I love the Smoothing Lotion as a light leave-in, and the Coffee-Coco Curl Creme as a curl refresher and a curly, pony tail poof refresher. That is, if I have been wearing a wash’n go for a few days, and one of the curls is kind of frizzy, or out of whack I will wet the strand down, and then slick some CCCC down the strand. This usually makes the curl snap right back. My only complaint is that her products are really expensive, and she has a sale once or twice a year. (Try Curl Mart? They have sales more often, but they don’t sell larger sizes.)

Oyin Handmade: HoneyHemp Conditioner I often use this as a pre-poo because it softens tangles. (Be careful how you store this because hemp oil goes rancid, so I would put it in the ‘frig for storage.) I get the big bottle from the website–it just, yes, makes economic sense.

*sigh* That was a long one, but I hope it helps somebody out there. It took me a long time to get to this point. I have gone through so many products to get to my hair’s maximum potential, but it’s been worth it. Yup.

Next post:  How I keep my hair moisturized in between washes.

Any questions? Comments?