I just finished reading A Parent’s Guide to Natural Hair Care for Girls by Lulu Pierre. I breezed through this book, almost completing the read in one evening. The information is forthcoming and laid out in a sensible order. It is a great resource for any mother or caretaker who is just looking to get an overview of how to take care of ethnic black or biracial curly hair.
Although we were already using many of the methods laid out in the guide, I found valuable reminders and some techniques that I can add to our current routine. Lulu the author of the book has an impressive resume. She is a previous salon owner who has over a decade of experience with black hair and beauty, she has been featured in Vogue.
You can get caught up in watching video after video on Youtube and blog hopping to gather the information that she has compiled in one place . The guide includes illustrations to help you design a routine. My personal theory is that you should figure out a hair routine, play with products and maintain consistency until you find the golden spot that works for you and your daughters.
Before getting into product selection and specific methods of maintaining curls, the author gives advice about setting up for the hair session to ensure that it is comfortable for you as the stylist and for the little recipient. Lulu stresses the need to make the hair date with your daughter a positive experience. It is vital to our young girls that we frame our self-care in a way that creates healthy habits. Yes, our coils and curls require time but if we complain and dread it, they will also begin to see washing and styling as a chore.
After debunking some myths about black/biracial hair, Lulu gives us a little hair science knowledge, followed by a guide to figuring out the hair type of your children.
One valuable advantage to Laufty Life hair blog is that we have a wide range of curls in this house. As you read about what works for us keep in mind how each of our curls slightly differ.[stextbox id=’custom’ bwidth=’2′ ccolor=’d0b0c3′ bcolor=’8397b4′ bgcolor=’d0b0c3′ cbgcolor=’d0b0c3′ bgcolorto=’d0b0c3′ cbgcolorto=’d0b0c3′ image=’null’]
- Dione- low porosity
- Giana and Misha- Normal to High Porosity
I had previously tested the girl’s strands in the float test for porosity, however, in this book on page 69, it recommends that you perform the test on dry and naked hair. I re-administered the test and found that their porosity was closer to normal than in the previous test.
As with most curly haired chicks, we each have at least two types of curl patterns within our manes.[stextbox id=’custom’ bwidth=’2′ ccolor=’d0b0c3′ bcolor=’8397b4′ bgcolor=’d0b0c3′ cbgcolor=’d0b0c3′ bgcolorto=’d0b0c3′ cbgcolorto=’d0b0c3′ image=’null’]
Boing- Our Hair
- Dione- 3b/3a
- Giana- 3a/3b
- Misha 3a/2c
The overall routine is pretty similar for all of us but there is a slight difference in how I maintain my coils in comparison to how I manage their looser chalk size spirals.
- I use heavy oils to seal their hair such as coconut and avocado oil.
- I prefer grapeseed or jojoba on my own hair.
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4 Techniques for Wash Day
- The first method I will start incorporating from the guide is to pre-shampoo with oil. This is something I have read about for some time yet hadn’t truly committed to this step. As I remove the previous protective hair style I will coat my hands with oil. This coat of oil on the hair prior to washing will prevent the hair from absorbing too much moisture and stripping the natural moisture from the hair shaft.
- Hot oil treatments- I remember as a kid sitting at my mom’s feet as she massaged warm oil into my scalp. I looked forward to this special hair session and I forgot about it until I read about it in the guide. On page 115 there is a list of essential oils that you can incorporate to enhance your hot oil treatment. This is recommended for stimulating the scalp and giving a deep moisturizing start. We will be doing this once a month, as I already have a collection of essential oils. This week we tried tea tree.
- Detangling hair dry and in sections. We had been using a combination of saturated hair and hello hydration with a wet brush to detangle, the guide explains that adding water to tangled hair can result in matting. We also want to minimize breakage and so now we are going to use our hands and the pre-shampoo oil method to remove tangles prior to starting the washing process.
- Picking 3-4 protective styles and rotating them so that we don’t stress the same areas of the hairline repeatedly. Misha loves to wear her hair in two buns. Giana prefers one ponytail. Unless it’s the weekend I do not like to send the girls out with loose curls. Our hair is so fragile and I don’t want them to rub or snag it while they play. When their hair is out and loose it tends to get more tangles. I allow them to choose how many braids or a specific style they want to rock some days. When the same style is requested over and over, I explain to them we cannot repeat the same protective style daily. Here is the line up of our current rotation of styles:
Rotating Protective Styles
- Braid across the hairline
- Quad Braids
Luckily if a product doesn’t work on one of u,s it will likely be a match for the other since we have a spectrum of curls. We will bring you a variety of product reviews and tell you who achieved the best results from them. This week we are using the following line up of products:
- Hello Hydration Conditioner
- Eden Coconut Shea Leave in Conditioner
- Mielle Organics Babassu Oil Mint Deep Conditioner
- Avocado Oil
- Eden Kids Coco Shea Berry Curly Crème
I love love love this mint deep conditioner from Mielle. It smells so earthy and sweet with its rosemary and grapefruit peel notes. You can see how it transformed Giana’s curls within 15 minutes of penetration, I also felt that my curls were popping this weekend after using it. I ordered the Deva Curl defuser for my hair as I avoid heat on the girls. I am undecided on how I like it and will keep you posted as I learn get more comfortable with positioning and holding it. If you need to start a new regimen and want to incorporate these new techniques read about how to start with a clarifying treatment.