Shampoo day

The weekends are hair time! My daughter gets her hair loosened, shampooed, conditioned and woven into cornrows. This typically happens from Friday to Saturday.

I wash her hair with Black Soap. If you want to know why I don't use commercial shampoos anymore, let me know in the comment section and I will do a post on it. Just before I stopped using commercial shampoo, I would spray her hair with a mix of coconut oil and some conditioner, loosely braid her hair in 4 to 6 sections - detangling (with my fingers or a wide toothed comb) while doing so and then shampoo section by section.

Now that I use black soap, which is not as stripping as commercial shampoo, I do not always bother with the pre shampoo (a.k.a. pre poo) step. I may pre poo if I think that her hair needs the extra moisture.

One section down, four more to go!

 

From the picture you can see that I had completed one section. I find sectioning very helpful because
  • Her head get a really good wash as doing the wash section by section helps me pay adequate attention to her entire head.
  • It minimizes tangling of hair. If you don't wash carefully, you may end up losing a lot of hair per wash which is an unnecessary waste.

I loosen each section to wash it. Depending on my mood, I may either put it back in a loose braid to rinse or not re-braid and just rinse everything out altogether. When I use the latter method, I am careful not to manipulate her hair much. I just let the water run through until it runs clear.  

Clean hair that is approximately 99% tangle free!

Some good guidelines are

  • Don't wash with your fingernails, just use the pads of your fingers and thumbs.  This is because you do not want to scratch at or irritate the scalp. You want to use massaging motions to loosen the dirt on the scalp so that you can rinse it away easily.
  • Don't scrub your hair like you would wash clothes. Remember your hair is delicate - treat it with care. The rubbing motion on your scalp is more than adequate for loosening dirt. No need to yank your hair from side to side, scratch your scalp with your nails like they do in salons.
  • If you do use commercial shampoo, dilute your shampoo. 3 parts water to one part shampoo is a good mix.
  • Make sure you get ALL the shampoo off when you rinse. Leaving it in there can cause your hair to be dry, flaky and itchy.  
  • Lastly, don’t rub your hair when you are drying it. Just dab.  Rubbing tangles the hair and damages the cuticles. Tip: An old T-shirt actually works better than a towel. It may be less absorbent but it is also less damaging.

When done right, shampooing will stimulate blood supply to the scalp and hair follicles – actions that promote healthy hair and growth.

19 thoughts on “Shampoo day

  1. Afronuts

    Its my first time on your blog and I’m loving it! Thanks for this educative piece. At least my wifey can get to know this and apply it to herself and my little girl.

    Thanks for the info on food and diseases in your earlier entry on ‘Disease no dey kill black man’. I got a clear understanding of ur point.

    Reply
    1. Natural Nigerian

      Post author

      Hey you made it here… I was not sure you would take up my offer seeing how offended you were over the Garri and Agege bread matter ;). I am so glad you like the blog! Ask your wife to come visit some time – there will be a lot more posts on hair and other things.

      Reply
    1. Natural Nigerian

      Post author

      I guess they have been taught over the years that that is the best way to get all the dirt out.

      Reply
  2. Adaeze

    Interesting….
    Yes I am interested in a post about black soap.
    If not using commercial shampoo (and conditioner) what would you advice? Apart from black soap? I have very long, curly hair (not African curly but more like Middle eastern curly lol) and my hair gets very tangly without using conditioner, so what would you advice against that? I have used different types of oil , one of them being jojoba, but I don’t like my hair looking too oily. Also, the not rubbing hair when drying it sounds…impossible to me, is there no way around that? Lol. My hair gets so heavy and so wet (even when I do rub) and since I live in this cold country I simply cant walk around with it too wet (I get sick because it usually takes 8 hours to dry) and I try to avoid blow dryers. A lot of questions here, you don’t have to answer personally but it’d be nice to know :-) Great post by a great mother.

    Reply
    1. Natural Nigerian

      Post author

      Hey Adaeze. I will do a post as requested. I would most definitely advice that you use shampoos that are free of SLS and SLES. They are Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) and Sodium Laureth Sulfates (SLES) respectively. These chemicals provide the suds and lather in shampoos but are also known to be drying to the hair as well as being irritants. In fact, SLES tend to stay in the body for longer because they can’t be metabolized by the liver. That means that they have even longer lasting effects. I will talk about it more on this in the post. I really don’t want to pub any products but if I absolutely must, I think Aubrey Organics is a good one for Shampoo. You should always use conditioner when you wash your hair.

      To oils, my absolute best for hair is coconut oil as it is the only oil that is scientifically proven to actually penetrate into the hair shaft. The rest act as moisture sealants for hair. There are of course different interactions if we are talking about the relationships of oils with the scalp. I think before I can answer this question, I need to understand what you want you achieve with the oils.

      Regarding drying your hair, I had not taken into account non African hair and non African weather, sorry. The fact that your hair takes 8hours to dry speaks of its length and thickness. I would advice that you try getting a large microfiber towel turban and tucking your hair under it to dry for about an hour before you let it out to air dry. That way you won’t need to rub it or carry it around wet for a long time.

      I am happy to answer any number of questions – it may take me sometime if there is some research I need to do.

      I hope this helps! I have a feeling that I may have to do a whole post on the questions you asked to get them all properly answered.

      Reply
  3. Adaeze

    Wow, thanks :-) I really appreciate you taking your time to help.
    The microwave fiber towel sounds like a good idea. Na wah o… My hair is giving me problems every week haha (with the long drying time). Ofcourse it dries faster (but still takes a while) in warmer weather and in the summer and that makes things much easier. I will definitely look out for the sodium sulfates. You are so knowledgable….looking forward to the next post to learn me some more.Oh, and about the oils; what I want to achieve is Mainly to keep the hair and/or scalp healthy and keep the scalp from itching. I recently had an allergic reaction in my scalp with eczema and all. Luckily I seem to have finally found the right medicine to stop the itching for now.

    All the best, have a nice weekend NN

    Reply
  4. mikki

    Never thought about sectioning my hair to wash.
    Will have to try it… WHat Black soap do you use? ..The only one I know of is DuduOsun

    Reply
    1. Natural Nigerian

      Post author

      I use the local one sold in the market and then mix in anything I want like Aloe Vera gel, jojoba oil, coconut oil and any essential oil. Sectioning your hair is really the best way to go about it…

      Reply
    1. Natural Nigerian

      Post author

      Thank you Valry!

      My daughter has dry skin as well and I have had some success with using a mix of shea butter, castor oil and other oils on her. It should be noted though that oils neither provide moisture or hydration as they do not have any water content. What they do is to “seal” the skin so that moisture doesn’t escape. The best way of tapping into this property is to apply it to damp (not wet) skin immediately after a bath, that way it seals in the water that is in the skin.

      I forgot to mention that my shea mix also has some vegetable glycerin in it. This is a natural humectant that draws water from the atmosphere and locks it into the skin throughout the day. That provides some moisture.

      Reply
  5. Julia Seyi

    Hello.
    Thanks for this post.
    I use elucence shampoo and dilute about 1 to 7.
    I also used dudu osun, as well as baking soda for cleaning my scalp.

    I’ll push away laziness, and start sectioning my hair to wash.
    Thanks.

    Reply
  6. sahara

    Hey, just a quick one, do you mix the black soap with anything else, or do you use it as is? Just got some black soap and my hair is due for a wash.

    thanks, i wonder how I missed this post..LOL

    Reply
  7. onome avae

    hi NN,
    its my first time on your blog…its so interesting!..am interested in knowing more about the ‘black soap’ for shampooing.. and i want to go natural… how do i start?

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>