I see those scissors in your hand. I see you peering into the mirror each morning, looking at your hair growing out, looking wild, and needing a good wash, cut, and some styling. I see your roots growing out and making you want to grab that box dye. I see your curls drying up and looking parched.
Trust me, I see you.
The COVID-19 outbreak has shut down many businesses temporarily, including beauty and hair salons and studios, leaving many of us without access to our trusted hairstylists. It's also left many of us bored and itching to experiment—after all, you're not going to be out in public for a while, right?
While most of us are in the same boat, women with natural hair, in particular, could benefit from these tips and tricks to keeping your locks feeling and looking healthy:
Stock up on hair supplies
When you're out for groceries or shopping online, get your hands on the right supplies for your hair. This includes sharp scissors—we'll get to that later—the right natural, sulfate-free shampoos, and conditioners, additional products such as shea butter and hair oils, combs, brushes, shower cap and scarves, bonnets and covers for bedtime.
Build a wash routine
You might be tempted to let go of your pre-COVID hair wash schedule; after all, you're not going to work and probably have more time. But it's important to space your washes out and plan them properly. This applies to straighter hair textures too. Overwashing your hair strips your scalp and follicles of natural oils and moisture, leaving your hair brittle and dry.
For natural hair, it’s essential to limit the number of times you shampoo your hair each week. When you do decide to shower, start with pre-poo and detangling using your combs and brushes.
Deep condition and protein treatments
This is a great time to experiment with DIY hair masks and treatments, in addition to your store-bought protein and conditioning treatments. Use coconut oil and other pantry items to create nourishing and moisturizing masks for your hair, deep conditioning treatments every few weeks, and of course, using your regular leave-in hair butter and conditioners.
Lay off the heat and chemicals
It doesn’t matter if you have curly hair or straight—chemicals and heat will damage your hair with consistent use. Take this time to cut heat out of your life and hairstyling and maintenance. No straighteners, no curling wands—nothing. It’s challenging, but for those of us used to styling on the regular, this will be a welcome break.
If you do need to go to work or have a video meeting, stick to heat-less or minimum heat styles.
Practice protective styling
For natural hair, another essential step is to practice protective styling at home. Go back to lessons your mother and grandma taught you; or head to YouTube for some tutorials on how to make braids. It might take a while if you’re not used to it, but protective styling is worth the effort. Keep your hair safe from the weather and other elements that could be harmful, but don’t forget to moisturize and nourish it.
Don’t cut your own hair
But then why’d I ask you to get scissors?
So you can trim dry, dead, split ends! Unless you've done this before, I wouldn't recommend cutting your hair at home because this can lead to a disaster. Instead, focus on keeping it healthy and trimming the tips to promote growth before scheduling an appointment with your stylist.
Enjoyed these tips and tricks? Stay tuned to my blog for more content. As a celebrity hair artist and beauty consultant, I’ve worked with different hair types, styles and I know it's tempting to experiment while you're bored at home. Focus on healthy hair, before trying anything that might damage it further. You can reach out to me about my services here!