It is often said that methods matter much more than products. For some naturals this is true but for others both are just as important. Here is a run down of the winners and losers when it comes to methods for natural hair in 2014.
1. Max hydration method (MHM) — This is pretty much the most talked about method in 2014. It did not have a razzle dazzle type of entry into the natural world but a slow trickling effect starting off as a compilation on a hair forum before being adopted by more people. The dazzle effect came with people showcasing curl clumping where previously there had been none and reports that tangling and knotting of hair was at an all time low folllowing use of the method.
2. Hair Steaming — The craze for hair steaming is still around. Perhaps the big difference this year is not the purchasing of hair steamers but DIY hair steaming instead. It is certainly one way to reduce costs and still get the steaming effect.
3.Crochet braids — Crochet braids have been around for a while as aprotective style but one that gave a weave/wig look without the actual weave/wig. In 2014 the big splash was really about creating invisible parts allowing the knots in the crochet braids to be disguised.
1. Max hydration — It was the top winner but it is also the top loser. As much as it has its fans, it also has its detractors. The method itself even from a neutral perspective is very involved and tedious. To the naysayers, the extensive use of the highly alkaline baking soda is a cause for concern. The aesthetic of the final result using MHM has been described as a showcase for shrinkage which is not necessarily what a girl who has spent 3–4 years growing her hair is aiming for. If you are not a wash and go girl and you prefer a more hair friendly pH range of 4–7, this method is not for you.
2. Inversion method - Grow one inch of hair in a week by doing a daily massage and turning your head upside down — this was the promise. In reality, no one is yet to showcase 52 inches of hair (52 weeks in a year) or a similar rate e.g 12 inches in 12 weeks. It turns out that most people were just able to hack out one week before giving up the routine as they forgot or more worringly felt dizzy during the process. Was it just a passing fad or is anyone really still doing it?
3. Hair Typing - It might be premature to declare the death of hair typing but it is hanging on for dear life in 2014 from my perspective. I have noticed people generally giving broader classifications such as type 3 or type 4 hair and less emphasis on the abc part. I have also noted that naturals are rightfully not drawing a correlation between a hair type and the effect of a product or method. However, hair typing is not dead and buried quite yet as my 4z hair did draw up quite a bit of hair typing confusion when it formed clumps with bentonite clay and there was fierce debate as to whether it was actually 3c or 4a.
Ladies, which methods were winners and which were losers for you?