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4 Ways to Achieve Softness in Coily Hair

Avatar • Aug 31, 2013

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I recently discussed the importance of recognizing the difference between softness and moisture in our hair. While moisturized hair may feel soft, soft hair is not necessarily an indication that your hair is properly moisturized.  Well, now that you know what I think about mistakes that can lead to soft but unmoisturized hair, let me share with you methods I’ve found to lead to soft, fluffy, moisturized hair. All of these methods may not work on your hair but hopefully you can learn something that benefits your hair.

1. Post-Wash Protection
I used to become frustrated with my hair the day after it was washed. For some reason no matter what conditioner, shampoo or moisturizer I used my hair felt dry and straw like. I then found that if I let my hair dry and then lightly re-moisturize it felt soft and remained that way for two or three days at a time. This is not to say that my hair was not moisturized. Coily hair (my hair is in the 4a/4b range) shrinks when wet which may make it feel “crunchy” and dry. I find that applying a moisturizer to clean, dry hair helps my me to better feel the softness of my tresses.

2. Lighten Up…on the Oil
I can’t explain exactly why my hair responds this way but when I use excessive oil my hair is likely to feel greasy without the added benefit of softeness. Moisturizing and sealing, therefore, isn’t something I do every single day. Even if I moisturize daily during colder or dryer weather, I will only seal with oil every two days.

3. Focus on those Dry Spots
If you’re like me you have multiple textures on your head. For me this means that not every section of my hair responds to the same methods. I may have soft hair in one section and dry feeling hair in another section.  For me, paying a bit more attention to the hair in along the nape prevents it from feeling coarse while the front and middle feel soft and moisturized. Modify your technique to meet the needs of different sections of your hair.

4. Your  “Cure All”
There is one product that no matter what improves, even if it doesn’t solve, a hair problem I’m facing. For me that product is whole leaf aloe vera juice. I call it a cure all because it doesn’t leave build up, doesn’t have a smell and it is light enough to use every day. The best part: My hair will undoubtedly be moisturized and feel softer the next day. I recognize that not everyone may have the same opinion of aloe vera but if you haven’t tried it I highly recommend it. In fact, this is probably the only must have I recommend to people regularly.

How do you achieve moisturized AND soft hair? Please share!

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Tonia
Tonia
7 years ago

It took me awhile to figure out #1 when I first went natural
My hair needs another boost of moisture after a wash.

Lawuan
7 years ago

I learned to seal much moisture as possible after drying my hair with an old tshirt. I use a combo of Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Grapeseed Oil and Coconut Oil adding to my prepoo and one of these after to seal the moisture. Sometimes depending on the weather and humidity I use the Loc method. Far as days after my Shea Moisture and Nubia Heritage Products do the trick for me keeping my hair moisturize throughout the week. Having 4c hair my hair is the most fragile hair type so I try to always keep it moisturized and balance with… Read more »

Missc
Missc
7 years ago
Reply to  Lawuan

I was trying to thumbs up your post 🙂 I’m walking on the treadmill trying to THUMBS UP! Smh! Lol

ladyluo
ladyluo
7 years ago
Reply to  Lawuan

Don’t really care if I get thumbed down but I feel some kind of way about men who spend as much time as I do on hair. It is kind of weird. Maybe that’s just me.

Dananana
Dananana
7 years ago
Reply to  ladyluo

It is just you, madam. I don’t feel like there’s anything wrong with either gender trying to look their best…and maybe more men should pay attention to their hair.

xyzebra
xyzebra
7 years ago
Reply to  ladyluo

So many times when you see a group of young black people, the boys have LUSH ‘fros and plaits while the girls have damaged hair and weaves. We need to take heed and learn what the guys are doing to grow their natural hair long and strong. Keep doiing you, young man!

K
K
7 years ago

1:1 humectant:water mist on damp-dry or dry hair. My hair must be close to dry or dry before adding humectants or they don’t penetrate. Lastly, a sealant. Extreme softness and ongoing moisture lasts for a week.

Kenesha Trenea
Kenesha Trenea
7 years ago

I achieve moisturized hair with traders joe tea tree tingle conditioner for co-washing, and shea moisture curl enahancing smoothie and coconut oil to seal and bantu knots.

JENNID
JENNID
7 years ago

Keep it clean! After being natural for 12 whole years I can honestly say clean hair is moisturized hair. My hair behaves and hold moisture so much better when I keep it washed regularly. No product or method has been as effective. Hair that is free from buildup (product or enviornmental) is soft, less tangly and less likely to snap off.

Anon
Anon
7 years ago
Reply to  JENNID

Interesting idea — if you don’t mind me asking, what is your hair type and how many days do you go before washing? Did you find that your hair was drier before adopting this routine or were you always a frequent washer? Do you ever clarify or just use normal surface free shampoo? I would say my hair can go comfortably for 3–4 days yet I only wash every week and by the end of that week, my hair will be very dry. When I had a TWA I washed more often and my hair stayed moist for longer. However,… Read more »

JENNID
JENNID
7 years ago
Reply to  Anon

My hair type is 4c. It is about collarbone shoulder length at the moment. I wash between 5 to7 days. Sometimes in the summer i do 3–4 days. But usually if it gets that frequent i’m co washing and acv rinsing. I don’t really have a preference about sulfates in shampoo. Both work just fine, soap based shampoos are no good for me however. My comment more or less was about cleaning your hair as needed not waiting weeks just because wash day is too long or you want to preserve a style. I use to try to find the… Read more »

RukiyatG
7 years ago
Reply to  JENNID

JenniD, that advice right there…Priceless! 100% agree!

cacey
cacey
7 years ago
Reply to  JENNID

I AM THE SAME WAY JENNID!!!! OMG i feel like you’re like the first person i’ve seen on here who expresses what i feel about hair washing/moisture. and the irony, is that as much as people say hair type matters, it doesn’t, as i would say my hair’s about 3b/3c. but the biggest fight i had with my hair for the longest, and which made me resent it so much for the first year that i tried caring for it naturally with no straightening methods involved, is the fact that i couldn’t figure out how intricately tied to washing my… Read more »

Alwina
Alwina
7 years ago
Reply to  JENNID

I completely agree with you and the ladies. I think for some people, spending all day washing/conditioning/styling hair is daunting. I know it is for me. So when I have the time I detangle and pre-poo in advance and do the rest the following day. I don’t push the styling to another day because I have this thing with styling dirty or sweaty hair (I work out almost every day). I keep my hair in mini-twists and if I feel itchiness, I use my tea tree oil/witch hazel/water mix on my scalp. I re-moisturize as necessary. Then co-wash my twists… Read more »

Amena
6 years ago
Reply to  JENNID

The most sensible comment I’ve read in a while. ALWAYS listen to your scalp. Signed, the naturals natural hair sylist!

Lex
Lex
7 years ago

(I type 4 hair with course texture and super coily)
Every time I wash my hair it doesn’t matter what shampoo or conditioner I used. One thing always happened…shrink, tangle, and crunchy city.
But I use Giovanni Direct Leave In after a wash & it will soften my hair and stretches it back out for easier styling. I love that stuff. Next morning my hair won’t be silky so I keep it in a protective style until it “breaks in” after the second moisture session (usually with shea moisture cream).

Trish
Trish
7 years ago

Mist with water then massage a dime size of avocado butter trough my hair. Softness for days.

Tiana
Tiana
7 years ago
Reply to  Trish

Ooooo! Where do you get your avocado butter? I’d like to try it. I’ve heard great things about it. Is it even comparable to shea butter?

Thanks!

hadassah
7 years ago

I don’t always have the time or patience to do the three step LOC method so I had to figure out a one step method to moisturising my hair for at least two days. My new mix helped solve this problem. I mix 100ml of clean water with 2tbs Cantu Shea butter leave in conditioning repair cream and 1tsp of olive or coconut oil. The resulting lotion gives me the same results as the LOC method and was even good for my mum’s greying TWA. I live in Nigeria so this measurements work for me. You may tweak it a little… Read more »

Kiara
Kiara
5 years ago
Reply to  hadassah

I did the same thing! I call it my LOC in the bottle. We use the same exact ingredients and everything! I spray that mixture on my hair in the morning to style and moisturize it and it makes it soft and nice! It’s the only product I’d ever need in my hair supply

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Alwina
Alwina
7 years ago

Awesome article! Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

Cas
Cas
5 years ago

What is the moisturizer that you use on your clean dry hair?

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