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My Pre-Motherhood Curly Hair Regime
Me and my curly hair
I am the proud owner of curly hair. Curly hair takes a lot of maintenance to look good but with the right care, the wearer of curly hair will always turn heads as she enters a room.
I used to have long, curly hair. Because of the work it took to care for my curls, I didn’t always like my hair. All of the magazines I read only had styles for straight hair which made me feel left out. Why not just relax my hair? Because I have mixed afro and Indian hair so I have soft curls. Everyone I spoke to who had relaxed their hair advised me against it. So why not blow dry my hair straight? I’m no good at blow drying my own hair into a particular style and paying a hairdresser to do it every week was not an option. Plus I don’t want my hair to suffer from heat damage. So the last thing you are probably thinking is, why not iron it straight with hair straighteners? Not only does it take too much time, as with blow-drying, I didn’t want to damage my hair with the heat.
I have other reasons for not straightening my hair. The non-vain answer to the question “why not just straighten your hair” is that my curls are me. Curly hair is what I have inherited from my parents and I should be proud of the way I was made.
The final reason, and it took me a long time to accept this, is that people, especially hairdressers, loved my hair! I couldn’t understand this at first because to me, everyone wanted straight hair. I guess it’s because it was different.
After coming to the realisation that my hair was, and still is, an asset, I managed to grow it to shoulder blade-length by taking care of my scalp and hair in a few simple steps. I’ll begin by sharing my pre-pregnancy routine with you.
It’s worth getting a professional haircut to lay the foundations. Your hairdresser will probably recommend that you buy the products they have used, although on the odd occasion I do buy the products, I can never get the same finish! A good hairstylist will give you valuable tips, even if it means recommending a product that they do not sell in the salon.
After getting my hair cut, which I did every three months, I would follow the same two routines for home care. One was for curl care and the other for scalp care as I have yet to find one regime that is perfect for both.
For scalp care, I would use a salon brand shampoo specifically for sensitive scalps followed by a salon brand hair masque for curly hair as a conditioner. I would always shampoo and rinse twice, towel dry my hair, apply the hair masque then rinse it out after five minutes. If my scalp still felt a little tingly, I would apply a trichologist brand scalp toner then style my hair.
If my scalp ever became intolerably itchy and flaky, I would apply a trichologist brand hair mask before shampooing and conditioning.
For curl care, I would shampoo and rinse twice with a salon brand shampoo formulated for curls, towel dry my hair then follow with a salon brand hair masque for curly hair. I used the masque instead of a conditioner – something I learned from my hairstylist.
Whether looking after my curls or my scalp, I would always use a curl cream on my damp hair if I was going to wear my hair curly, to encourage the curl and nourish my hair. If chose to wear my hair in a straight or wavy style, I would use a general moisturising cream, again on damp hair. To avoid heat damage, I would leave my hair to dry naturally and when it was halfway through drying, I would apply a hair oil to really lock in the moisture and leave my hair soft and shiny. On the odd occasion where I did blow dry or straighten my hair with straighteners, I would always use a heat protector spray, usually a high street brand.
Long and healthy hair
I have stuck to this simple regime because it really works. I have not seen a split end in my hair for what must be at least five years! I ended up with long, healthy, shiny and bouncy hair.
It took a while to find a regime that worked but I think of my hair as an investment – I put in the work and now I am reaping the dividends.
#naturalhair #curlyhair #motherhood #pregnancy