As a Certified Formulator I have learned a lot about hair and continue to do so – probably always will continue to study the capillus (hair) because I find it so fascinating!
As a nature lover, tree hugger and self-proclaimed hippie, it bothers me how much shit we are told to put our hair through in order to keep it healthy, shiny, clean, or wavy/curly. All this product ends up down the drain, you know? And not all of it is made to support aquatic life. Not all of it is meant to be on our scalp, actually, and in the long run it is very damaging.
WHYYYY? OH WHY are we doing all of this?!
The state of a hair
How is your hair? Is it perfect? Normal? Is it perfectly curly or wavy, straight or coily? That's right, nobody has perfect hair and I am yet to find a single person who says they'd do "nothing" to their hair because its perfectly formed waves or glistening shine need nothing. Pschhh...
We all have issues with our hair. Straight-haired people want a bit of wave, wavy people want a bit of curl, curly people want that perfect curl, coily people want it smoother, we all want it less dry, the struggle is real! And finding the right set of products requires a friggin' detective.
The ideal products
NOTHING. Not a single thing you will use on your scalp or hair will be perfect. You may find something that really works for you well and two months later it's caca, surprisingly not the ideal thing you thought it was going to be forever.
Your hormones change and so will your hair.
The weather changes and so will your hair needs.
You need medications for x or y and your hair will change. Or fall. Or get weaker.
You highlight your hair or perm it, forget it. You need a whole line of different products now.
Back to the curlies
In the curly girlie world, we are supposed to aim for the "perfect curl". Bouncy, shiny, clumped just perfectly, not frizzy, and we should still be able to last 4-5 (or more) days in between washes because your hair will be so gorgeously hydrated that you don't need anything to wash off all that stuff you just put on it!
In the curly world, there is no wavy hair and if you *think* you have wavy hair, you probably have curly hair but have never tried the "curly girl method" so how would you know?
In the curly-haired world you need to follow these steps carefully:
- a shampoo
- a conditioner
- a leave-in conditioner (while your hair is still very wet and you "squish to condish")
- mousse. Lots of it.
- or gel to hold those curls in a "cast"
- then plop it with a towel (but just right! not too long, not too much crunchin' and not to much touching either)
- then dry it using a diffuser - but holy shit be careful! That cast is super fragile!
- then after it's dry you want to "break the cast" but leave the curls you spent 50 minutes forming. So an oil may work for this – just a touch is all you need!
- and if you need to because you have a few frizzies, you can re-gel a bit. Or re-dampen.
"Making the curls" is another project though! And this is after the mousse and sometimes before (or after) the gel. You try and figure it out because heck, all curls are different!
- You can form them using two fingers;
- you can form a spiral using a favourite Denman brush handle (because "no other handle will work", you know? It's "gotta be a Denman for goodness sakes!" - rolls eyes);
- you can use a banana, a cucumber, or a thick Sharpie pen (yep! seen that too); or
- you can just mousse and gel and then crunch, that'll give ya perfect curls!
It's all very frustrating to watch... It's damaging to our hair cuticle, the scalp microbiome (that's all that good flora that lives on your scalp eh?), and to our Earth!
Guess what – it's wavy!
Or... is it...?
Not everyone has spiral curls. Not everyone has a full head of waves, either. Just like not everyone has either porous or non-porous hair. I for one, have a combination of porous and non-porous, waves and curls, spirals and even straight hair! Check it out in that picture right here:
In this photo I used 2 products to style my hair:
- Our Concentrated Powdered Shampoo, and
- Our leave-in conditioner gel (coming 2023)
And both products are fully biodegradable.
Is my hair perfect? Nah it's not.
And the struggle can seem real sometimes, but that's normal...
It really bothers me that haircare manufacturers are selling you 2, 3, 4, or 5 products with the belief they're all different. And here's the big secret: THEY'RE NOT.
Newsflash: It's all the same stuff.
Cosmetics manufacturers are fighting for your spend. They want your money! Conventional, mass manufacturers of haircare products are using a LOT of synthetic ingredients because they're cheap, without regarding our Earth, your hair, the state of your scalp, what may happen to the microbiome of it or how it will affect your hair in the long run. They just want your bucks and profit.
A lot of products that I listed above are actually one and the same.
- Your conditioner and leave-in conditioner are exactly the same product, with very slightly different ingredients, percentages of ingredients, or slight viscosity changes.
- Your mousse and leave-in conditioner? Same thing.
- Your gel is basically water with gums like carrageenan or xanthan or a combo of these and/or others. Your gel could easily be incorporated as part of your leave-in conditioner, so you skip a step and save lots of $$ (why not? we did it) And time! Holy smokes the time you'd save!
- Did you know that many shampoos and conditioners are the same, with very slight variations? And did you know that you can actually also cleanse your scalp with a conditioner?
- Did you know you can water down a conventional shampoo by 200% (twice as much water) and wash just as effectively? (and save lots of $$)
- Have you looked at the ingredients list in that "hair oil serum" you're buying? Does it list any "PEG" ingredients? Yep... petroleum-derived...
Time to simplify your routine.
Learn about the ingredients that are in your haircare products. Don't know what it is used for? Google it.
Learn what your hair likes and needs at this moment (because that will change), and do that!
Use less product and wash less often.
Wash less often and drain less chemicals down the drain.
Take the time to save our Earth because it matters.
Take the time to save your hair now, because it will thin out and fall out later.
I remember in my late teens using a shampoo called "Timotei Plus" and OMG it was PERFECT! Until I learned that the ingredients it included (all those parabens, silicones, formaldehyde preservatives!) were the reason for its demise and discontinuation. So I set out to make some of my own and here we are (wink!).
It's time to rethink the curl, the waste, the time, and the labels. You may not have curly hair after all, so stop believing everything you see on social media because many of those "influencers" are paid to make you believe you can look just like that, by using just those products.
What do you think? Bring it! I'd love your input on this one.
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