Whether you wear your hair permed, straightened or au naturel, many of the products you use to maintain your magnificent mane may contain a noxious stew of chemicals and solvents. More than 80 percent of us use chemical relaxers of some type or a combination of lotions, dyes and gels that are less than pure.
Many of these products may work miracles on our hair, but when it comes to our bodies, they may be doing more harm than good. It appears relaxers may even contribute to fibroid tumors one of the most problematic health issues for black women.
Dermatologists also report that exposure to the chemicals in relaxers, as well as those that coat weaves and wigs, can lead to rashes and alopecia (hair loss).
So this weekend, do something to make your hair say, ahhh! Here are a couple of natural recipes for removing product residue, while nurturing your scalp and tresses.
Try the Mud Cure. Bentonite clay is a tried and true natural remedy for removing layers of product from your hair. Lots of people mix the clay with apple cider vinegar, but vinegar can change hair color, so try using organic coconut milk as a base and add honey for moisture. You can also add a few drops of peppermint essential oil to help cleanse and stimulate the scalp. Follow package directions, but work toward a creamy mask. Apply it to wet hair and your scalp. Let it sit for 15 to 20 minutes and rinse with warm water. Do not let it dry.
Rinse in moisture. Pure aloe vera juice can be tremendously soothing to the scalp and it leaves hair soft and shiny — though there’s no research to back up claims that it can make hair grow or cure baldness. Rather than buy a commercial aloe vera conditioner with tons of added ingredients, try a simple, inexpensive DIY version.
Mix ¼ cup aloe vera gel (from a plant or the health food store), about 3 tablespoons melted coconut oil, and a teaspoon of pure vitamin E oil. Massage into hair and scalp. Leave it on for 10 to 20 minutes. Rinse with warm water.
Keep it pure. Detox your shampoo and conditioning regimen for good. Look for shampoos and conditioners that are free of parabens, sodium lauryl/laureth sulfate and other chemicals. Try the Giovanni or Alba Botanica product lines. Both companies produce natural shampoos and conditioners that protect color, address scalp problems and keep hair looking lovely.
About Fierce Fridays — Tips for Weekend Well-Being
We each cherish those precious days off at the end of the week, but increasingly those of us who are charter members of the sisterhood of the stressed and overworked are losing our Saturday and Sunday leisure time to weekend work and domestic duties.
To make sure that you do something every weekend that’s just for you, we’ll be sharing a little advice to make those 48 hours a great time to recharge your batteries, bring a little good news into your life or discover a quick and easy way to improve your health.