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the moisturizing masterbook (courtesy of j!), pt 1

Avatar • Feb 5, 2009

so, a few weeks ago, jenteel (our resident hair expert for some months now…) put together a bomb package on our favorite topic; moisturizing!

in a prophetic twist, i realized that i needed a new daily moisturizer soon after she completed the article. so, this article is as much for me as it is for you. here’s part 1.

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As winter sets in, we at BGLH thought it would be important to focus on moisturizing techniques as we brave the sometimes unforgiving winter weather. All the hard work done throughout the year can be diminished if one does not incorporate some “winterproofing” into our hair regimens 🙂

IT BEGINS ON THE INSIDE…

As far as hair health, I will begin with the internal — the most important. Yes, what you put into your body reflects on the outside; especially important for most of us concerned with the beauty aspects of hair, skin, and nails.

Water: The amount of water you consume actually varies by person. I don’t stick to the “8 glasses a day” rule because we are all different. You should drink a little less than half your body weight in ounces of water per day. If you exercise, you should add 16 oz to the total for every 45 minutes of strenuous activity. For every ounce of caffeinated beverage that you drink, you need to drink and additional 2 oz of water.

Fruits/ Vegetables: Try to consume fruits and veggies with a high water content; red-orange fruits and veggies, leafy greens, citrus & berries.

Vitamins/Minerals: Vitamin A, C, E, zinc, selenium, and omega‑3 fatty acids. Omega-3s are very important. For vegetarians who don’t eat fish/fish oils, try nuts/oils like macadamia, walnuts & almonds.

Useful Supplements: MSM, Spirulina, Silica & DHA.

WHAT YOU PUT INTO IT…

No-poo / Co-wash: This is a technique popularized by Lorraine Massey in her book, “Curly Girl — The Handbook: A Celebration of Curls: How to cut them, care for them, love them, and set them free”. The premise for this technique is that most shampoos contain harsh, drying sulfates that are extremely damaging for curly hair (ammonium laureth sulfate, ammonium lauryl sulfate, sodium laureth sulfate, sodium lauryl sulfate, etc.). They make curly hair frizzy and uncooperative. Using conditioner in place of shampoo will cleanse the hair just as effectively without stripping it of moisture. Gentle shampoos that contain mild cleansers (i.e. cocamidopropyl betaine or coco betaine) can be used occasionally.

Deep Conditioning Treatments: You can make these treatments yourself or purchase commercial conditioners that contain one of more of the following ingredients: honey, botanical extracts, shea butter, avocado oil, olive oil, castor oil, sunflower oil etc. INGREDIENTS TO AVOID: mineral oil & petroleum which coats the hair and prevents moisture from getting in. A good conditioner should flatten the cuticles and fill in rough spots, thereby smoothing the hair surface. It should also provide good lubrication so that hair glides over each other avoiding snags and breakage. This is where slip becomes important. Slip describes how easy it is to get the comb thru the hair strands. Leave in a deep conditioner for 30 minutes to an hour with heat, longer without.

Oils: Coconut and olive oils are known to penetrate the hair shaft easily, but make sure to mix the oils with even a little bit of water to really penetrate the cuticle. Jojoba oil is similar to our own sebum so this works well on the scalp and as a sealant.
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there is SOOO much more, but we’ll do bits at a time.
thoughts?

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About jenteel

haitian-naturalist-lover-idealist-health-conscious-spiritualist-yogi-new yorker

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rlimiray30
rlimiray30
11 years ago

Thanks for the information, this is good information to know! I’m gooing to try no-poo

Hijabi Apprentice
Hijabi Apprentice
11 years ago

Great post!

Gloria
Gloria
11 years ago

By the way… Oil is not for moisture. Its to seal in moisture that is already there.

Black girl with long hair
Black girl with long hair
11 years ago

@ gloria… got to agree with you on that one. oil has never been a good moisturizer for me…

jenteel
jenteel
11 years ago

thanks ladies 🙂 @rlimirayi love no-pooing!it has made an extreme difference in the feel of my hairbut it is very important to find the right conditioner to no-pooit makes a world of difference(i use trader joe’s nourish spa)if you use a conditioner with siliconesit leaves a yucky film @ gloriai never stated “oil was for moisture“oils provide essential nutrients to the hair shaft these nutrients penetrate easier with the use of wateri myself never liked oils until i learned how to use them properlyfor instance straight oil on my scalp sends me running! when leila posts the rest of the article… Read more »

KurlyQue
KurlyQue
11 years ago

I’m allergic to fish and nuts so I can’t try the Omega‑3…are there any other suggestions?

jenteel
jenteel
11 years ago

@kurlyque 1st,let me break down the importance of omega-3s especially for anyone who is not familiar essential fatty acids (EFA)s are important to overall functioning of the body. they are needed by all cells and cannot be created by the body, unlike the nonessential fatty acids which can be created by the body. EFAs keep the cell membrane fluid and flexible. they are broken down into two categories: omega 6s and omega 3s. we get plenty of omega 6s thru oils like corn, safflower, sunflower, cottonseed, and peanut and margarine. our processed foods are overladen with these oils, but omega… Read more »

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