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My Pregnancy Hair Care Regime (with alternatives if I do it all again)
In my earlier blog post I introduced my pre-pregnancy hair care regimes – one to look after my scalp and the other to take care of my curls. In short, I used salon brand shampoos, salon brand masques as conditioners and followed this with curl cream and hair oil to style. When I became pregnant I adjusted this a little and this is how I did it.
To cut or not to cut?
Pregnancy was exhausting! Washing my long curly hair was such a chore, to the point where I wanted to cut my hair into a 1990’s Nia Long style crop. That wouldn’t have worked with my curly hair but I could always dream. I could have opted for a Tia Mowry-Hardrict style natural curly crop but after all of the time spent thinking about it, I didn’t even cut my hair. I was desperate not to fall into the stereotype that “all mothers cut their hair really short”. Looking back, I really shouldn’t have cared what anyone else thought and I should have done what was comfortable for me.
Another small reason for me not cutting my hair was that some people get thicker hair, or at least it feels and looks thicker. I think it’s something to do with the hair not falling out at its usual rate. The perk of the thicker hair lasts until the baby is born then the hair is supposed to fall out. As I was not sure what the pregnancy hormones were doing to my hair, I decided it wasn’t the best time to start experimenting and risk not having enough hair after my baby was born.
Washing my hair was too tiring to be pleasurable, so I decided that I needed to reduce the time spent doing it. I wanted to try co-washing which is washing the hair with conditioner only. In theory it seems great – one less step and my hair is left clean and conditioned. Long, curly hair might be able to skip the soap but skipping the conditioner is certainly out of the question. There are specific co-wash formulas available but when I went to the shops to buy one, I couldn’t find the brand I wanted. In fact, I couldn’t see any co-wash products. I was too tired to spend time chasing after a conditioning hair cleanser so I gave up. I could have bought one online but I found that my patience was at an absolute minimum when I was pregnant!
Purse-friendly products for good scalp health
My key concern during pregnancy was scalp health. Perfect curls were the least of my concerns which might seem strange but my belief is that a healthy scalp will produce healthy hair anyway. When I have to choose, scalp care takes precedence.
In preparation for motherhood, I tried a high street brand of shampoo and conditioner which was geared towards scalp health. I didn’t use a masque so I just left the conditioner in for a few minutes then rinsed it out. I transitioned to high street products from salon brand products in order to save the pennies – everyone kept telling me that babies are expensive!
Of course, I had my trichologist brand scalp toner and scalp mask on standby in case the pregnancy hormones really wreaked havoc with my scalp. Sometimes you just have to spend the money. Fortunately, my scalp remained healthy so amongst the general pregnancy worries, my scalp wasn’t one of them.
Styling my hair also really took a back seat in the grand scheme of everything. I continued to use curl cream to enhance the curl and hair oil to lock in the moisture. I wore my hair in a low ponytail as it was the quickest and easiest thing I could manage. I did straighten my hair once myself and once at the salon and I remember thinking that straight hair would be so much easier to maintain. For starters you can just run a brush through straight hair. Curly girls know that a brush plus curls equals a frizzy mess, but that’s another story. I didn’t maintain the straight hair look – curly hair is me.
In all, my pregnancy adjustments led to me focusing on the health of my scalp, doing the absolute minimum to nourish my curls and switching to more affordable hair care products. As basic as my regime became, I still didn’t get any split ends or an itchy scalp, and my long hair made it to the birth. I feel quite proud of myself!
Tasha is the author of hairbytashasface.wordpress.com and tashasface.com