You might be wondering, conditioner…deep conditioner – aren’t they one and the same? Well, in a way, they both do the same job – condition your hair. In my opinion, the difference lies in how long you leave the mixture on your hair.
For a quick condition – let’s say about 3-10 minutes – this would be a simple conditioner. If you choose to leave it on your hair for a much longer period – let’s say 15-30 minutes – this would be a deep condition. There are other circumstances where one can leave a conditioner overnight for a much needed nurturing or just for the simple reason of convenience or yes, laziness – I am sometimes guilty, especially if I am too tired to finish my hair regimen for that day.
There is the ever so simple way to condition hair – just put on some conditioner after cleansing hair while in the shower and then do the other little things you do during your shower routine – shaving, facial scrub, etc.- allowing the conditioner to do its job.
Then there is the 10-15 minute time frame. In this instance, once the conditioner is applied, you put on a plastic shower cap or saran wrap or plastic bag and allow your body heat to help the conditioner soak into your strands.
And then, there is the ‘Big Mama’ of conditioning – the hair steamer. This is a great way of ensuring that the conditioner does the job. The more commonly used hair steamers are the the Huetiful or the Q-Redew Hand-held Hair Steamer. They basically open the hair cuticle more to allow deeper penetration of your conditioning product which leads to better hydration and better prevention of hair breakage. Take a look at a table top model and a standing model being offered at Amazon.com.
Of course, whichever method you choose, the most important thing is that you are taking the time to care your hair.
Here are some yummy natural recipes that you might find interesting to pamper your tresses.
1 Aloe vera leaf
To make this ever so simple hair conditioner, simply slice down the middle of the leaf, (watch out for the slippery feel of the leaf while cutting). Then get a table spoon and scoop out the inside – a jelly-like substance – and then put in a bowl. Next, empty contents in a blender and blend. Pour the mixture through a sieve to ensure that all the little stray pieces of the leaf does not stick in your hair. Then, massage into freshly cleansed hair. You get more penetration by covering your hair with a plastic cap for about 10 minutes. Rinse and style as you like. Your hair should be easy to comb and oh so much softer to the touch.
Honey and Banana
1 over-ripe Banana
It is better to use an over-ripe banana for this recipe. It is softer and blends easier. Simply peel banana, slice and put in blender. For one banana, I usually add one tablespoon honey. Blend. Once blended,strain through a sieve to ensure that the seeds from the banana are out of the liquid and does not stick in your hair. Massage in freshly washed hair and cover with a plastic cap for about 10-15 minutes then rinse and style. This mix makes your hair soft and shiny.
Yoghurt and Olive oil
Natural Greek Yoghurt
As with most of the recipes I will outline, the quantity is mainly for one use so there is no waste. So, one tablespoon of olive oil and one small tub of yoghurt. If you do not have Greek Yoghurt, any natural yoghurt will do. The Greek Yoghurt is just more loaded with nutrients. Put both ingredients in a small bowl and hand mix until blended together. Massage into freshly cleansed hair and cover with plastic cap for at least 5-10 minutes. This mixture might be a little runny so ensure that there is some protection (towel) around your neck for the ‘drip factor’! Rinse and style or continue with your regimen. This mix will strengthen your hair.
1 Fully ripe Avocado
For this recipe, please choose a softer avocado – it blends better. You can mash the avocado in a small bowl with a dinner fork or you can blend on a slow speed for a few seconds. No needs to strain after blending. Just add to freshly cleansed hair and cover with plastic cap for 10 mins and then rinse. Hair should be softer and shinier.
Fenugreek is often used in the Indian culture as a very pungent and vibrant spice added to curries. Now there are two ways of making this conditioner. I like to grind the seeds using a coffee grinder until it is a soft powder. I then add about 6 tablespoons water to 1 tablespoon powder. Now, this powder tends to double in power once it is wet. Leave overnight to allow it to do so. Then simply massage into freshly cleansed hair and cover with a plastic cap for about 30mins. Rinse and enjoy tangle free, shiny hair.
The other method, is to soak 1 tablespoon of seeds in warm water (about 6 tablespoons) and let it sit overnight. Then blend and use the paste as a hair mask. After 30 mins, same results as above – tangle free and shiny hair.
Can of Coconut Cream
I LOVE coconut anything! The oil, the cream,the flesh, the water – it really does a body good! There is not much to this conditioner recipe. Simply sp0on some coconut cream in a small bowl depending on the length of your hair. Apply it to your hair and then cover with a plastic cap for about 20 minutes. Rinse and style or continue with your regimen. Coconut cream leaves your hair smelling great, feeling soft and silky and full of shine!
These are just a few recipes which show how versatile fruits and natural products can enhance the beauty of black natural hair. Start your adventure and let me know your thoughts.