You’ve decided to take the plunge and grow out your relaxer. Immediately you may be a bit overwhelmed by all of the products on the market geared towards those who are fully natural, and now products are being marketed to those who are transitioning as well. The Transitioning Kit.
Many of the major natural hair companies appear to have a set of products geared towards transitioning, which is great! This offers those new to natural hair some direction in appropriate product selection. Though, some kits now available can be a bit pricey, they all are made up of routine products which promote the fundamental principals when growing out chemicals and general hair care.
To those serious about transitioning, knowing the basics will get you off to a great start. If your pockets aren’t deep, you’re Frugal McDugals (like me, lol) or are too anxious to wait for the mailman, here are a few products and a little info to get you started.
Step 1: Cleanse
Many shampoos marketed towards natural hair (or those achieving fully natural hair) are often gentle cleansers which do not contain harmful surfactants such as Sodium Laurel Sulfate. The shampoos are designed to not only cleanse the scalp but nourish as well.
local finds| Avalon Organics Nourishing Shampoo, Yes To Carrots Nourishing Shampoo, Organix Macadamia Oil Shampoo
Step 2: Strengthen
According to Chicoro, "the purpose of a conditioner is to improve the surface of the hair and needs to be applied repeatedly to continue to affect the surface of the hair'. Some conditioners are marketed with claims to repair damage, the reality is they cannot repair damage permanently. Instead, conditioners make your hair appear that is has been repaired. Protein treatments are designed to bind to the surface of the hair and should be applied with dry heat (sit under dryer until hair becomes less damp).
Reconstructors contain molecules which are smaller in size and are negatively and positively charged and are able to penetrate the hair strand to the cortex. Reconstructing treatments should be applied with wet heat (sit under dryer with a plastic cap or cover head with warm damp towel).
local finds| Nexxus Keraphix Restorative Protein Creme Reconstructor, Tresemme Nourishing Rituals Protein Renewal Cream, Shea Moisture Ant-Breakage Masque
Step 3: Moisturize
After strengthening your strands with protein or reconstructors, it is important to follow with moisture. The nature of our highly textured tresses, with all of its bends and twists, makes it difficult for our sebum to reach to the ends. This makes natural hair tend to the dry side. We require regular moisturizing treatments and using a gentle heat source helps it to penetrate better.
local finds| Aubrey Organic's Honey Suckle Rose, Aubrey Organic's White Camellia, Trader Joe's Nourish Spa Conditioner
Step 4: Leave-In
After you've rinsed your moisturizing conditioner, you must follow-up with a moisturizing leave-in to keep your hair soft and pliable between washes. The more texture your hair possesses, the more forgiving a heavy leave-in moisturizer will be. If your hair is mostly straight, a light leave-in or cream rinse conditioner is your best bet to ensure flowy tresses.
local finds| Giovanni Direct Weightless Moisture Leave-in, KeraCare Leave-in Conditioner, Tresemme Naturals Nourishing Conditioner with Aloe Vera and Avocado
All products above can be found in your local Target, Walmart or beauty supply store.