In this post, I shared my plans to go heat free for 1 month in an effort to get really comfortable with my natural hair texture. Though there is certainly nothing wrong with heat styling or altering your natural hair texture, I really wanted to embrace mine as a way of getting more comfortable with myself. For many reasons ranging from social to personal, I have been straightening and smoothing my hair for many years and always worked to combat my natural texture.
As I enter my 31st year of life though, I want to really embrace you who I am in every way and enter a new level of self-acceptance that extends beyond my physical appearance. That said though. I thought the easiest place to start would be with my outward appearance so I went cold turkey on all heat styling exactly 1 month ago yesterday. In today's post and video that you can watch at the end of this post, I'm sharing what this journey has taught me about myself and my hair, as well as the routine I'm loving at the moment.
WHAT I'VE LEARNED ABOUT MY HAIR
Let's kick things off with what I've learned about my hair during this journey. First and foremost. I learned that my hair is wavy, not curly and based on some online quizzes I've taken and articles I've read, I think it is type. 2a/2b. Next, I confirmed that humidity is my number 1 enemy when it comes to having a great hair day and that as a result, humidity control is my #1 concern.
After testing out the wet brush, a wide toothed comb and my beloved Mason Pearson brush on sopping wet hair, in the shower, on damp hair and on dry hair I've learned that my hair performs the best when brushed only once when damp - not too wet and not too dry. Also, there wasn't a noticeable difference between any of these brushes so I've stuck with my Mason Pearson because I love it so much and want to use it. Unsurprisingly, I also learned that my hair loves moisturizing products but that those products can't be too heavy or it will weight my hair down and I can't stretch my style as long as I'd like. Last but not least, I learned that less truly is more for me and complicated multi-step routines only left my hair feeling crunchy and weighed down.
WHAT I'VE LEARNED ABOUT MYSELF
Now I want to go over what I've learned about myself during this journey. First up is that my identity was and still is very firmly linked to my hair. After wearing my hair straight for so long, my natural waves felt foreign and uncomfortable but after just 1 month I already feel more like myself than I have in years.
Next up, I am VERY lazy when it comes to doing my hair. I've always known that I prefer quick and easy to long and complicated, but there was something about trying to figure out a wash and go routine that reinforced this in a new way. Needless to say, if a routine takes a long time and tons of products I just won't do it - plan and simple. I touched on this above, but I'm also feeling more confident than ever before and I couldn't be happier that I'm settling into this truer version of myself. Along those same lines, I've also been reminded that our identities are 100% our own to develop, reinforce and share with the world around us. Though this is often easier said than done, I've been reminded in a new way that nobody can determine who we are or what we want better than we can and it's so important to stay in touch with that. Check-in with yourself often and make sure you're always living your truth. And last but not least, I wish I did this years ago! Though it feels way overdue I am excited to be in this new stage in my life and I'm excited about the personal development that will come as a result.
STEP 1: WASHING MY HAIR
Now I want to get into the fun stuff and share the routine and products that I've been loving. Over this month long journey I've experimented with a ton of products and routines and these have given me the best results. One of the biggest changes I've made has been how I wash my hair. Before this journey I used shampoo and conditioner like many of you probably do, but as I researched the best ways to care for wavy and curly hair I discovered co-washing. If you're unfamiliar with this it's basically washing your hair with conditioner and I was hooked from the first time I tried it. The co-wash that I've been loving is New Wash by Hairstory and it's incredible! I've embedded some of the pros and cons below for you so you can get a feel for the product at a glance, but I can't recommend it enough. Also, for me and my hair type I've found that I need at least 6 pumps of New Wash and a really good scalp massage to get my hair really clean.
When I get out of the shower, I put my hair up in a Turbie Twist which is a terrycloth towel that reduces frizz while helping my hair dry faster. If you're like me and have very thick hair you know what a game changer this is! In fact, depending on the weather and the season, my hair can stay wet for a full 24 hours after I wash it if I don't do anything to it. I let me hair sit in the Turbie Twist for about 10-15 minutes before I let it down and brush through it with my Mason Pearson.
STEP 2: STYLING
Once my hair is completely tangle free I go in with styling products and the two that I've been loving give me hold without the crunch - plus they smell amazing! To achieve the perfect styling combination, I mix about a dime or nickel sized amount of the Oribe Matte Waves Texture Lotion with the Ouai Hair Oil and then apply them evenly to my hair. Once the product is applied I try to avoid touching my hair until it's dry - easier said than done sometimes but I find that it helps reduce frizz.
The last step in my routine is styling cream when needed and the one I've been loving is the Leonor Greyl Eclat Naturel. I love everything about this product and it does a beautiful job of smoothing fly aways and keeping things looking fresh.
The important thing I've found with this product is to use a very small amount (about a dime) or it can get very greasy very quickly! I unfortunately learned this the hard way before figuring out how little I truly needed. Also, for me this product does not work on damp hair and when I tried to use it as an air drying product my hair was incredibly limp and lifeless.
And there you have it! I really hope that you liked this and found it helpful and I'd love to know if you have any tips for keeping my waves looking great past day 1. I'm having a hard time figuring out how to sleep on it etc so I'd love to know if you have any recommendations. Also, since frizz and humidity are my #1 enemies and spring and summer are just around the corner, I'd love to know if you have any frizz fighting product recommendations. Other than that, I hope you're having a nice week and thanks so much for stopping by!