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29 Contributors to Healthy Natural Hair

Avatar • Sep 24, 2011


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By Cipriana at UrbanBushBabes.com

One of the most important things I have learned through my hair experience is that no matter how similar they seem, no two heads of hair are alike. Sometimes people fail to understand that not only does the physicality of our hair contribute to its uniqueness, but our lifestyle does as well. Stay with me as I list 29 major contributors to an individual’s unique hair makeup. Keep these in mind when building your natural hair routine and taking natural hair advice.
1. Density/mass of hair (how many strands you have on your head)
2. Length
3. Porosity (how easily your hair retains moisture)
4. Individual strand density
5. Texture
6. Shrinkage percentage
7. How often hair is washed
8. Water intake
9. Nighttime routine
10. How educated and knowledgeable you are about your hair
11. Nutrition
12. Recovering from an illness
13. How often you seal your ends
14. Whether you are transitioning or have completed the big chop
15. Your stress levels
16. Your fitness levels
17. Your field of work
18. How often you search & destroy or trim ends
19. How patient you are when detangling
20. The amount of time you dedicate to your regimen
21. How long your hair was relaxed
22. How often you use heat
23· Whether or not you protective style
24. Amount of manipulation your hair encounters during the week
25. Whether or not you color your hair?
26. How often you moisturize
27. Whether or not you’ve given birth
28. Genetics
And Most Importantly:
29. Whether or not you love your hair!

Ladies, what factors do you consider when assessing your hair? And which factors contribute most to the health of your hair?

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supasista
9 years ago

Thanks for an exhaustive list. It would have been beneficial to the reader to explain each point in detail. 🙁

NW
NW
9 years ago
Reply to  supasista

+1. I think all of the points need to be elaborated on so there’s context to their inclusion on the list. I think the title may be misleading, though, since the author states that the points contribute to the hair’s uniqueness and overall make-up, but she doesn’t say anything about the list being contributors to actual gaining healthy hair. If it were a list of healthy hair contributors then some of the points need to be re-evaluated because some of them contribute to healthy natural hair (nutrition); some points have no correlation to healthy natural hair ( i.e. how long… Read more »

Phyla
Phyla
9 years ago

I can’t say I agree with everything on that list. What do genetics have to do with having healthy hair? And giving birth? (Other than you’ll have less time for your hair with a baby. This was kind of pointless as it really provided no information other than a list of arbritrary terms.

kisha
kisha
9 years ago
Reply to  Phyla

giving birth, hormones change lots of things if u pregnant u will notice changes in every part of ur body from hair to teeth to skin u must not be a mom or u must not have noticed any changes in ur body when u were pregnant.

Annie L.
Annie L.
9 years ago
Reply to  Phyla

@Phyla — I think it’s within the realm of possibility that a hair and/or scalp disorder could be genetic, or that even a hereditary disease or condition could produce symptoms or immuno reactive side affects adversely affecting scalp/hair. Also, I’ve heard and read many women describe temporary and permanent changes to hair density, texture, color, strand thickness and growth during pregnancy and after giving birth.

HandsInHair
HandsInHair
9 years ago
Reply to  Phyla

Genetics have a lot to do with having healthy hair. http://www.ishrs.org/articles/gene-driven-hair-loss.htm

“This was kind of pointless as it really provided no information other than a list of arbritrary terms.” Huh? You’re saying this list is based on random choice or personal whim rather than any reason or system. What makes you believe that?

Phyla
Phyla
9 years ago
Reply to  HandsInHair

The list says “Whether or not you’ve given birth” not “whether or not you’re pregnant or have RECENTLY given birth.” If someone gave birth 5 years ago would that affect her hair? The list can see arbitrary when no explanation is given for any of the points.

merry
merry
9 years ago

i agree. some of these things don’t have much to do with hair health. genetics? how does that impact the health of my hair?

texture, color, length it can growth — yes. but health? no.

Jasmine
Jasmine
9 years ago
Reply to  merry

Are you seriously asking that question?? What does genetics have to do with hair health?? Wooooow.

merry
merry
9 years ago
Reply to  Jasmine

yes. i am.

what does genetics have to do with whether my hair is healthy?

unless i have a particular condition that impacts the health of my hair, then it’s about care.

i would imagine the overwhelming majority of people’s hair health is not about genetics.

maybe the author should explain what is meant.

HandsInHair
HandsInHair
9 years ago
Reply to  merry

You answered your own question: a particular condition that impacts the health of your hair. Eeeeexactly. There are people with genetic conditions that affect their hair. Even if caring for their hair in a particular way helps lessen the impact, that still means that if the particular care regimen wasn’t there to counteract it their genetic “fate” (for lack of a better word at the moment) would run its course. http://www.ishrs.org/articles/gene-driven-hair-loss.htm “Androgenetic alopecia is the best known and most widely distributed gene-caused or gene-associated cause of hair loss. There are a number of other causes of hair loss with a… Read more »

MV
MV
9 years ago
Reply to  HandsInHair

+1

Cipriana
9 years ago

Actually the original title of the post is “Natural Hair Advice: Make it Your Own”

EG
EG
9 years ago
Reply to  Cipriana

Hi Cipri, I think some people were thrown off because we’re accustomed to receiving detailed list on this site. So when some people saw yours, they no doubt thought, where is the rest? Anyhoo. I am a big fan, just saw your take down twist video on youtube, and I really like your spirit. I especially love how you and Nikisha(?) have different hair types, and your hair is the same length, if not longer than hers. Take that you type 4 is bad hair b*tches!

Cipriana
9 years ago
Reply to  EG

Haha YES take that and thank you so much EG I am a strong advocate in showing our texture is just as fierce as any other texture and dispelling that ridiculous myth! 😀

EG
EG
9 years ago
Reply to  Cipriana

You’re welcome :-).

Cipriana
9 years ago

The original title of the post is “Natural Hair Advice: Make it Your Own” I was stating the factors you should take into account when finding your own regimen and listening to others who provide natural hair advice because no matter how much it may seem that your hair is identical to someone else’s hair there are other factors you have to consider to when listening to “Natural Hair Advice” to cater it to your own hair. Even though some of these factors very much contribute to healthy natural hair.

Jasmine
Jasmine
9 years ago
Reply to  Cipriana

Thanks for the list Cipriana! I love it!

Cipriana
9 years ago
Reply to  Jasmine

Your welcome and thank you so much Jasmine 😀

Jasmine
Jasmine
9 years ago

I love this list. The natural hair world is currently so focused on texture. EVERYTHING is texture-centric; from the advice we give each other to the styles we think we can achieve. It’s important for us to look outside the texture box and think of additional factors that contribute to our hair’s uniqueness.

Mimi
Mimi
9 years ago
Reply to  Jasmine

I completely agree. There is so much that contributes to having healthy hair. I’m glad this list didn’t explain each point because just by stating a contributor it makes the reader think: Hmmmm, maybe I should consider more protective styles…or moisturizing more often.

anastasia
anastasia
9 years ago
Reply to  Jasmine

+ 1 Excellent list and yes, yes, yes, we must unchain ourselves from the ‘texture box’

Cipriana
9 years ago
Reply to  anastasia

Anastasia thank you :DDD

Ruth
Ruth
9 years ago

I believe that this list was to add emphasis on the introduction: “One of the most important things I have learned through my hair experience is that no matter how similar they seem, no two heads of hair are alike.” The post was meant to illustrate how there are many OTHER factors to take into consideration when thinking about YOUR healthy hair. For instance, someone who is on medication for a certain illness may experience different levels of growth and health vs. if they had never been on that medication, etc. PS- I never come to the comments section of this… Read more »

Jasmine
Jasmine
9 years ago
Reply to  Ruth

EXACTLY! Girl don’t even get me started, lol. I’ve been in many a comment box fight on this site. I think the readers have become increasingly critical and unreasonable.

merry
merry
9 years ago
Reply to  Ruth

but the information is a bit on the cryptic side.

doesn’t matter what you’re doing (blog, etc), when you write for an audience, you need to be clear. this was not clear. things like this shouldn’t need further explanation really.

this coming from someone who writes for a living.

df
df
9 years ago
Reply to  Ruth

PS- I never come to the comments section of this blog anymore because everyone is always so critical.”

I understand people’s views about this post even though it was helpful to me but I totally do the same thing too. I personally think it’s because there was such a huge swing in the posting of controversial topics that people got used to arguing and are now just constantly on edge. Or maybe not…who knows but I just stick to reading the posts.

Cipriana
9 years ago

The original title of the post is “Natural Hair Advice: Make it Your Own” I was stating the factors you should take into account when finding your own regimen and listening to others who provide natural hair advice because no matter how much it may seem that your hair is identical to someone else’s hair there are other factors you have to consider to when listening to “Natural Hair Advice” to cater it to your own hair even though some of these factors very much contribute to “healthy natural hair”. This list is meant to help others who are frustrated… Read more »

Annie L.
Annie L.
9 years ago

I assess my hair according to varying density, strand thickness, wave pattern, porosity, reflex (aka shrinkage), strength and my overall health. Factors contributing to my hair health: +Acidic (pH4‑6) solutions. Detox, fortify, define wonderfully +Humectants. Moisturize, soften, detangle and define looong time +Water. Wonderful but only weekly or as needed. Humectants increase hydration time and the other benefits of water so much longer for me +Avocado Oil. Softens, moisturizes, protects and lovely consistency +Cleansing. My hair can go forever w/o it so it’s as needed +Herbal rinses. The slip and nutrients are no joke +Flat twists/plaits. Good for my ends, suits my… Read more »

Cipriana
9 years ago
Reply to  Annie L.

Beautiful and wonderful list. I love how you explained what works for you and catered it how your hair responds 😀

BornSwimmer
BornSwimmer
9 years ago

@ Annie L. Thanks for your list. Very informative. Diet is such a significant factor! I include vitamin intake with that as well. @ HandsInHair, thanks for the link. I appreciated this piece very much, and give kudos to the author. I took this piece as a way to facilitate discussion, or as mostly a conversation-starter. So I expected that more details would be provided as we all answered her questions: “Ladies, what factors do you consider when assessing your hair? And which factors contribute most to the health of your hair?” I am also grateful for the editor’s clarification about… Read more »

Sylvia
Sylvia
9 years ago

By “How long your hair was relaxed” does the writer mean the length of your hair when it was relaxed? And, if so, how does that affect hair health? My hair was BSL back in the relaxed days. What does that mean for my hair’s future?

Cipriana
9 years ago
Reply to  Sylvia

Well in the original post it was worded differently but I am referring to how long someone was chemically (relaxing) treating their hair. Hope that helps 🙂

lexibugg004
lexibugg004
9 years ago

I was hoping for clarification on the effects of recently giving birth, i had a baby girl in august, and was expecting excessive shedding due to a shift in hormones, but my hair barely sheds at all, even less than it did during pregnancy!! i could literally count the number of hairs in my brush at the end of the wekk, heck two weeks even!!!!

AJ
AJ
9 years ago

This is just listing facets of hair care, I can’t see how these are “contributors” so much as they are areas in which you can evaluate your hair care

foxyr
foxyr
9 years ago

Thanks for the changes, because I was getting discouraged by all the nasty comments some of the readers tend to make when a post is even the slightest bit controversial. I really love this blog and I would like to see more positive and constructive feedback from readers in the future.

Again, thanks for trying to keep the atmosphere positive!

Annie L.
Annie L.
9 years ago

This IS a great list. I had hoped to see what others would contribute whether or not they questioned items on the list or were responding to the criticism of others, but…another day 🙂 Also, in my opinion, the tone, visitors and contributors to this site are overwhelmingly positive. I see the same variety of critical response on many open, public forums, with and without a registered users list. I find that the best way to smother trollish, abusive or disparaging online behavior is after responding once, instituting ‘group ignore’, leaving that person(s) to rant ad nauseum by themselves and recoup… Read more »

nappy headed black girl

#10 is spot on. It doesn’t matter how knowledgeable you are if you don’t know what works for *your* hair.

My biggest contributor is simply leaving it alone. I don’t do any type of manipulating outside of washing and separating. Works for me.

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