So it’s been an interesting past few weeks for me and my hair.
This natural hair journey, in all honesty, is not the easiest and trying to treat my hair like silk with loving patience at times, can be the last thing on my mind. The journey has it’s ups and downs and at times, I just feel like throwing my hands up and saying ‘ain’t nobody got time for that!’
It’s times like these when I KNOW I’m due to put my hair in a long term protective style like box braids or a twists for a few weeks.
My hair is usually in some state of protection about 95% of the time, when I have my hair out it’s usually in a puff.
My little hair puff
For work, I try to figure out a way to keep my hair neat and the ends tucked away with plaits. Most of the time though, I use half wigs. I don’t weave my hair anymore, because no matter how it’s done or cared for, my fine strands just cannot take it. Wigs are neat, I don’t have to wear them all the time and I have complete access to my hair. Plus my hair seems to loooove them and really thrives. I’m yet to find some natural hair looking wigs that I like though in Harare though, but the search continues.
I started using a spritz a few weeks ago which consisted of about 50% aloe vera juice, 10% glycerine and the rest water, with a few drops of olive oil. At first my hair didn’t really take to it, it felt brittle and dry. I then tried it again and my hair felt moisturised, my coily pattern was more pronounced and my hair was less frizzy. After weeks of happily using it, this week, my hair changed it’s mind. How is it that my hair just starts reacting differently to a product without any external changes?
Spotted forms of Aloe vera are sometimes known as Aloe vera var. chinensis. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Well with some research, some coilies/curlies don’t react well to aloe vera, especially girls with low porosity hair. When I began my journey, I had highly porous hair. Now I’m asking the question of whether my hair porosity has changed and now has a normal or even low porosity. Well considering I have used henna treatments, it’s highly likely.
Hair porosity refers to how easily hair absorbs moisture. This depends on how the cutilcle layers on the hair shaft rests. If they are raised, the hair is highly porous and moisture passes in and out easily. If they are compact and tightly overlapping, the hair has low porosity. This hair type repels moisture, and to get moisture the cuticles have to be raised. Normal porosity is ideal where some moisture is absorbed and retained.
My hair has also previously reacted badly to glycerine when it was dry outside. It’s Fall/Winter here, so the air has become very dry. Since glycerine is a humectant and draws moisture, when it’s cold and dry here, it draws moisture out of the hair strands into the dry surrounding air, making hair dry and brittle. So it could have been the glycerine in the spritz.
So I just began using a spritz with no glycerine, less aloe vera juice and more water and olive oil. So far, my hair is showing very little change, but will check again after a wash.
I’ll report back on results.
And, look forward to more posts on hair porosity.