Tuesday, April 23, 2013

An Easy Way To Soften Naturally Kinky Hair

Tuesday, April 23, 2013 , ,

By Chioma Iwunze-Ibiam

I wish I’d learned about the wonders of apple cider vinegar much earlier. All those years of groaning about hard it is to manage natural kinky hair would have been different. Last week, after I’d watched a How To Grow Beautiful, Softer and Shinier Hair video on Youtube, I decided to do something different.

First, I went to a department store. I bought 50cl of honey, 50cl of Aqua Rapha yogurt  and a bottle of Safari apple cider vinegar (and the ACV was so cheap. It cost less then N200 naira).  And I made my own conditioner.

First, I put a glop of yogurt in a cup. Then, I added a few spoons of honey, two tea spoons of apple cider vinegar, one table spoonful of mayonnaise (because it contains eggs and vegetable oils) and two spoonfuls of my Henna deep conditioner. I whisked these into a thick paste and proceeded to shampoo my hair. Again, I had put a few drops of the apple cider vinegar into my bucket of water.

Then, I parted my very think full head of hair and proceeded to wash and rinse. I wrapped a towel round my wet hair, just long enough to get excess water off my hair, before I brought in my homemade conditioner.

I sectioned my hair into three parts. Concentrating on one part at a time, I scooped some of the conditioner with my cupped fingers and applied to tinier sections of the hair, massaging the scalp as though I were applying relaxer to it.

When I finished with one section, I massaged a bit and loosely braided that section of hair. I ensured that all of my hair had sufficient contact with the conditioner. I did this to other sections of the hair and covered with a plastic cap and a hair net.

BTW, research had shown that apple cider vinegar also facilitates hair growth by covering the cuticles and lifting dirt off the scalp.

Hard as it was, I forgot about my hair, attended to housework and read a few chapters from the books I’d started reading.  After about four hours, when heat had activated the conditioner enough, I rinsed off the conditioner with the aforementioned bucket of water (with the apple cider vinegar). I didn’t use any other conditioner; and I didn’t comb my hair, until after I’d towel dried.

Then, I applied a little Cantu shea butter and some unprocessed shea butter to each section of the hair. At the tips, I used a Texture My Way detangler. Then I combed, holding the roots with one hand and working through the tips with a wide toothed comb. My kinky hair was remarkably softer. I held it with a band and braided up. I took the second half and did the same.

By morning, after my morning exercises, I went to the salon to twist my hair. It was the first time the hairdressers made my hair without complaining about its coarseness. They even commented on its softer
texture. See pictures of the end result.




My hair was softer and smoother and shinier. I even got to see more length. Now, I’m more convinced that I can manage my very kinky hair this way.

_________

Chioma Iwunze-Ibiam is a writer and blogs at Creative Writing News





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10 comments:

  1. Sorry Myne, I just have to comment on this to make sure the right info is gotten.

    ACV doesn't make hair softer. It is an acid! What it does is to improve the conditioning effect of what was originally supposed to condition hair because it lowers PH.

    ACV does not condition hair! That's just a wrong info. How can acid condition?

    ACV will remove build-up, help scalp health, tighten cuticles thereby making detangling easy. It might even help lock a conditioner in your hair cos of its cuticle-tightening effect, but it won't condition hair.

    Please, that 'research' should be checked again.

    Chioma added so many ingredients to her DC Mix, so any of them might have been responsible for the wow softening effect, or even the combination of them, but let her not say 'ACV is a good conditioner'. It is an acid. Acids don't condition!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you AN, I guess Chioma is trying to say ACV added to her usual conditioners softened her hair even more. I'll edit to reflect your comments.

      Delete
    2. I'm going to have to agree with Naturalista only to the extent where she says ACV is an acid. I can't confirm that. As far as I know, it's a vinegar with 5% acidity. I'm not sure if that makes it an acid.

      However, ACV is not a conditioner. It clarifies the hair/scalp and removes build-up. I always use it as a DC. I also got a bit concerned when I saw that she added ACV to her DC mix. I've never heard it done that way before. And she left it in her hair for 4hrs. I think Chioma should be careful about leaving something so acidic in her hair for that long.
      When I use ACV, I first rinse my DC off my hair with water and then I use a water/ACV mix to further rinse. ACV is too potent to put in your hair straight. Plus it could hurt your eyes.
      Kindly check again to be sure you didn't misunderstand the purpose of ACV.
      Nice post though. We learn everyday.

      Delete
    3. Lool. It is. Orange is also an acid. Citric acid. Many fruits are acids, most oils and butters are acids (fatty acids such as oleic, stearic, palmitic, etc).

      Delete
  2. I suspect mayo and henna. Acv is mostly foe clarifying the scalp. :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Lovely. My daughter had the same results with SheaMoisture products. Me too, come to think of it. I always used to do relaxed for half the recommended time to loosen up my curls which meant it wasn't natural anymore. Now, I just use natural products. They have the shampoo, conditioner, deep treatment stuff you leave in for 45 minutes and tons of stuff after, all different lines for specific hair types. My mom (60s) and daughter (5) use the same line for thin hair while I use the one for dry hair. Apple cider vinegar does a lot of things. For those trying to get away from antiperspirants, you can use it first and let it dry, them apply your all natural deodorant and voila, it kills the bacteria so that even if you perspire, it has no smell. It's also good for a is reflux, mouthwash, etc.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I wonder what men that carry afro hair like myself should do to soften our hair without using hair relaxers? Chioma, ngwanu?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The secret to soft kinky hair is to DC (deep condition) most times. Also afterwards, lock in moisture with an oil eg olive or coconut oil and a butter, most preferably shea butter. You can google up a good DC mix but I usually use 3 tablespoons of mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon honey, 1 tablespoon olive/coconut oil and/or 1 egg. Mix it up and put in your hair. Let it sit for about 1 hour or more if you choose then you wash it out.

      Delete
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