Overview At Centre Clauderer, the number of our clients who decide to no longer have their hair straightened increases every year. For them, beautiful afro hair means healthy hair, and not artificially straightened hair, as they had long thought.
Here are the tips and advice we give them, to help them love and take care of their new hair.
Natural hair is much more than a fashion statement... It means no longer being a slave to straightening, and also choosing the liberty of being oneself, of loving and being proud of black beauty.
You have chosen to express your real nature and we congratulate you for it! You should know that you will be able to count on our support throughout the process: as our clients will tell you, we have always incited them to stop straightening their hair, and given them tips to optimise the charm and health of their naturally frizzy hair.
First, in order to avoid being tempted to change your mind about your new resolution, here is our first tip: learn how to understand the nature of your new regrowths, and how to treat them with care. Consider them as precious and living fibres, and not like strings that can be pulled endlessly. That is because every tiny curve of your natural stems corresponds to a potential breaking point! Be particularly careful about the tangled-untangled junction, as it will be the most vulnerable part, during all the time where you let the two textures coexist in transition. However, if you know how to delicately take care of your new hair, you will quickly understand its needs, and you will never regret your decision.
And when you need to motivate yourself, never forget the torture you made your hair go through by straightening it...
Your Old Hair
Breaking hair and split ends, coarse hair that does not grow well… those are the problems we find every day on straightened hair. There is nothing surprising about that! Applying a straightening product, whichever it is, starts by emptying the hair of its natural hydration, because the humidity reduces the effectiveness of the straightening process. And even if we then bring the best compensating care, the hair’s cuticle remains fragile, and risks breaking with traction, and making the hair dull. Nothing surprising then about feeling like your head is the home to a set of lifeless hair!
Also, straightening products, with or without welding, all have a very alkaline pH: they can be corrosive for the scalp, and trigger a whole series of scaly states (dandruff), irritations, crusts and itchiness. Why do you think the person applying them always wears gloves?
And this is without mentioning the actual burns that occur when the product has been applied too close to the skin. If the inflammation is deep, it can reach the hair follicles, which will no longer produce hair, and leave entire zones without any regrowths.
Natural Products Only!
And since you decided to go back to natural hair, you should go all the way and only use, for upkeep, products made of 100% natural ingredients: it would be a shame to damage your new hair, which in fact has a particular kinship with plants, which it easily absorbs. Plants represent, for your hair, a guarantee of strength and softness.
Always carefully read the labels, and exclude from your choice any formula that contains ingredients that could harm your hair, including:
1- Alcohol in gels
2- Sulfates in shampoos (lauryl and laureth sulfate)
3- Glycerin, in creams and balms, if it exceeds 5% of the total content
4- Silicon, which finds its way in most of products available nowadays
The first three mentioned reduce the ability of the products that carry them to hydrate your hair properly.
As far as silicon goes, it is particularly misleading because it initially gives the illusion of softer hair, easier to untangle… But, by adding a slim chemical layer to your hair, it captures its keratin and does not allow for its hydration. And none of the nourishing products you later apply in order to regain healthy hair will be able to cross the fence created by the silicon layer. Your hair will thus rapidly become dryer, more rigid and receptive to dust.
You should first know that opting for a short or long ‘transition’ is a matter of personal choice, but has no incidence on the quality of the growing hair: the hair growths through the root, and not through the tips. It is thus on the root that you should work if you want to increase the pace of growth, and be able to take care of the straightened part of your hair as soon as possible Activ’Croissance.
Also, the skin on your scalp must be perfectly smooth: it should no longer be subject to rashes or dandruff, which straightening and other hair products may have caused. In order to achieve this, it will be important to cleanse and oxygenate it permanently, with strongly hydrating milk, along with special massages.
If you follow the Clauderer Care Method, our Balancing Milk for frizzy hair will first cleanse your epidermis –the visible part of the iceberg.
But it will also act under the epidermis, where the roots develop. They are often clogged with toxins, which are cellular dejections that smother and curb their full activity.
It is best to identify and eliminate those toxins as early as possible if you want to make your hair as strong and supple as possible In-Depth Clauderer Diagnosis
In Europe, frizzy hair needs to be hydrated much more than in its country of origin, because of the difference in hygrometry (the level of humidity in the hair). Of course, the process is amplified when the hair is straightened, but it remains, to a lesser degree, with naturally frizzy hair. It is thus essential to provide it with the water it needs… But ‘hydration’ does not mean ‘oiling’. In order to know which oils are best and how to apply them, you can read our article onExcessively Dry Frizzy Hair: Treating It with Essential Fatty Acids.
Transition Hair Styles
- Whatever the transition hair style you choose, do not replace the torture of straightening by other tortures that will be as hard on your hair: braids too tight on the basis, excessively heavy extensions and add-ons. By over-pulling on your roots, they risk removing them from their hair follicles, and thus causing premature hair loss. The loss would then artificially trigger a new life cycle for the regrowths. And this is not something you want! Eventually, your regrowths will become thinner and thinner, and their life cycle shorter and shorter. Then, your hair will end up no longer growing at all, because you will have worn out its ability to renew itself. In medical terms, this process is called traction alopecia.
-Very important: continue to hydrate and massage your hair well, during all the time you keep a hairstyle. If you do not do this, your hair located close to the roots will dehydrate itself and will risk breaking in large amounts when you will undo the hairstyle.
- In fact, we advise you to not keep a hairstyle more than a month, or 6 weeks as an absolute maximum. It is never good for the roots to remain set for too long in the same, unnatural, direction. They need to breathe and develop freely, with no obstacles ahead of them. Also, when you are undoing your braids or removing your add-ons, make sure to be very gentle. Check that your natural hair, closest to the scalp, did not break. If it did, then you should skip having a new hairstyle, and let your hair loose, and free, for a few months!
The cleansing elements found in shampoos, even good ones, are an aggression to your hair, and contribute to drying it out. At Centre Clauderer, we always replace shampoo with a post-shampoo cleansing and revitalising cream, made of 100% natural ingredients. Despite its lack of detergent, the cream makes the hair very clean.
In order to avoid harming your hair when you wash it, follow the tips we had already given you for straightened hair:
1- Wet your hair progressively with tepid water (more or less 30 to 35° C), and spread a small amount of shampoo on the scalp and the hair.
2- With your fingers flat, gently rub your scalp, and massage your hair softly, from the scalp to the tips so as not to tangle it. The process should take 1 to 3 minutes, depending on the length of the hair. Important: contrary to a common misconception, a strong massage of your head while shampooing risks dehydrating your skin, and should thus be avoided. Massages, which are so crucial to the hydration of afro hair, should be done after shampooing, never during, using special nourishing milk (see Scalp Care section above).
3- Progressively pour the equivalent of one or two bowls of barely tepid water on your hair, while continuing to massage it gently. This is in order to remove the shampoo little by little. Then rinse thoroughly. If your hair does not feel clean enough, you can renew the process once. Otherwise, it is not necessary.
4- In the last moments of rinsing, add a coffee spoon of apple vinegar in 50 cl of mineral water, in order to eliminate the limestone, which is a particularly damaging substance for frizzy hair.
If you did the big chop, your natural hair does not need to be untangled on a daily basis. That being said, you should not let it mount to a tightly knit ball. So what should you do then? On most days, use your fingers instead of a comb. And to occasionally untangle in-depth, follow, here too, the same instructions we had given you for straightened hair, i.e.:
Proceed lock per lock, by maintaining a lock in one hand, and an afro comb with large dents in the other. Always untangle from bottom to top, by slowly moving towards the scalp.
Recipee; We advise you to always humidify your hair before untangling it. Best is for you to use an atomiser and mineral water, to which you will add a small dose of virgin oil, and light caring cream (in order to ease the mix of oil and water). Dosage: 80% water, 10% oil, 10% cream. The proportion of oil can be modulated according to how your hair reacts. PLEASE NOTE: If you decide to follow Clauderer Treatments, one of the products provided will enable you to make this mix.
If you decide to let your hair grow naturally, your risk feeling pressure from your peers or your hairdresser. Here are some answers you can provide to their false arguments:
Argument #1Your hair will never look neat!
Answer: If my hair is kept up well, and healthy, it will look a lot neater than artificially rigid and inert hair, that breaks at every level. And because I will feel neat in my head, comfortable with myself, it will necessarily reflect on my hair’s health and beauty. My new mantra? “Love yourself, and your hair will love you back!".
Argument #2Your hair will no longer grow!
Answer:On the contrary, it will grow much better, because my scalp will no longer endure the aggressions caused by straightening products, which prevent regrowths from developing normally.
Argument #3Your hair will fall!
Answer:I know that during my entire transition phase, the straightened part of my hair will be very fragile, and that I will need a specific treatment for each texture. But why then would the natural part fall? I will, on the contrary, regain my lost hair density.
Argument #4You will spend a fortune on add-ons or extensions!
Answer: A fortune is what I spent when trying to breach the damage caused by straightening. With my natural hair, all I will need to do is hydrate and feed it. My hair budget will clearly go down!