By Audrey Davis-Sivasothy of The Science of Black Hair
In hair care, there seven deadly hair sins that can really make your hair life miserable. We’ll walk you through them and give you quick tips for avoiding them! Are you guilty of any of these hair sins?
We’re not talking about genuinely being proud of what you’ve got—no, this hair sin happens when you know that your hair is damaged or in bad shape, but you refuse to part with the split or bad ends to “save face.” It’s okay to admit that … hey— you messed up. Maybe you were using too much heat, wearing the weave a little longer than you planned … or perhaps that lighter hair color set you back a bit. It’s okay! We’ve all been there. Admit when you are wrong, and cut your losses— literally! Your hair will be so much better for it.
You’re on Youtube, Tumblr, Twitter, Facebook and beauty blog overload. The constant barrage of amazingly gorgeous hair (that looks nothing like yours) can send almost anyone over the edge! The Internet has been both a blessing and a curse. On the one hand it connects you with some of the fiercest sisters on the planet, on the other, it can leave you feeling extra-regular. But remember, allowing yourself to become green with envy over another person’s hair success will only set you back. Channel the frustration into something positive. Study their techniques and methods so that you can find something that works for you. (Also know that things aren’t always the way they seem. All of that extra shine “so-and-so” has could be a really good camera flash or great lighting, and who knows how many “takes and edits” it actually took to get the “carefree look” presentable enough to share with you.
Product lust, that is! Lust in hair care is just like lust in the real world. It makes you go after a hair product based solely on its superficial characteristics and physical appearance instead of valuing it for what it is inside (ingredient-wise/how it responds to YOUR hair). This means jumping on products just because they are new/just hit the market, on sale/cheap price, your favorite color, from a popular brand name, have a fruity smell, etc. You may even “cheat” on a proven, long-term relationship brand or staple product in a quest to feel the rush. Stay loyal to the products that are working for you. If it ain’t broke— you know the rest!
True Story: When I was in high school, I actually chose my shampoo and conditioner based on color and fragrance. I loved sour apple, so naturally Suave Sour Apple shampoo and conditioner were my mainstays for years. The products were bright green, matched my bathroom and was 89 cents. Sure, it left my hair feeling like straw, but the bottles looked pretty in the bathroom and it smelled amazing.
Getting caught up with product lust naturally leads to the next deadly hair care sin: avarice.
Like product lust (where we move toward products solely based on superficial criteria), greed is that desire to find the next best _________ (insert hair-related thing). The Internet has only made it worse for those of us who are always on the quest for the next best product! It’s not about experimentation, it’s pure greed! This deadly hair sin happens when you actually find a product or technique that works for you, but you need something more! You’re no stranger to product hauls. You need the next best conditioner. The next best curl defining gel. The next best flat iron, detangling brush etc. when what you have is already working pretty well. This hair sin will lead you to stockpile products and tools that you never intend to use because, well …you just gotta have ‘em! Give your pocketbook a rest and work with the products you have before feeding the desire for more, more, more!
If your deadly hair sin is gluttony, you probably have a complete lack of self-control or balance in your hair care—especially when it comes to chemical treatments, weaving and heat use. Gluttony is one of those sins that really shows itself on the outside. From the condition of your hair, we can tell you’re probably doing waaay too much. Excessive coloring, chemical straightening, thermal straightening treatments, weaving and basic blow dryer and flat iron use are common traps. If you’ve got all of these factors going on at once, then you are probably REALLY in trouble! Remember balance! Too much of anything is well—too much!
Sloth kicks us in the rear when we have no hair care routine at all. You’re not organized and you’re all over the place. And guess what? Your hair looks like it, too! You haven’t researched your products, you haven’t done any due diligence—you’re just doing stuff on a whim or because your favorite hair guru, blog article or book said that THIS is THE thing. Commit to kicking the lazy habits and getting your hair back on course! Do your own research and then put it to the test. Your hair may or may not be textbook hair– and that’s okay. The “experts” often disagree. Listen to your hair, it won’t tell you wrong.
This deadly hair sin is what you feel when you hit a plateau or wall in your hair care regimen, and it’s usually a result of haphazard hair care. It’s frustrating. You’re fed up. You don’t have a real hair care plan, and it shows. Your products are not working like they used to, your hair is not as thick or shiny as it once was, or you’re shedding like a cat. Any number of things could be happening. The Solution? Get back to basics and focus on a basic cleansing and deep conditioning hair care regimen!
Ladies, have you been guilty of any of these hair sins?
If you’re battling these seven hair sins, there’s still time to change! Find The Science of Black Hair on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter @blackhair101 for more great hair care tips! You can also pick up The Science of Black Hair here! Thanks ladies (and gents)!