Most of us naturals, whether loc’d or loose, have the same ultimate goal… we want healthy hair. Many of us also love conditioners because, as the name suggests, these products condition, nourish and hydrate the hair follicle and often help with detangling. This is perfect for “loose” natural hair, hence the reason most naturals and almost ALL ” new natural converts” are continuously searching for the champion conditioner. What I need my fellow loc’d naturals to understand however, is that conditioner is NOT necessarily the answer you are looking for to have long and healthy locs. Confused? Allow me to explain from my own experience and research just why you should avoid using conditioners in your locs.
Conditioners are known to soften and nourish the hair, and do a wonderful job at giving the appearance of healthier looking hair. The fact is however, conditioners merely allow the hair cuticle to lay down and reflect light. The results? Shiny hair with a nice luster that we all equate with “healthy hair”. While it’s true we all want to avoid the dull, brittle look, the reality is that our locs are an amalgamation or “callaloo” of many different stages of our own hair; the healthy, the damaged, the growing, and even those that should have been shedded… all knotted together. Therefore, while loose naturals want their hair follicles to be separate and lay down, the idea behind locs is to have all that hair intertwined. Adding conditioners to our locs actually impedes the loc-ing process. Furthermore, these thick creamy products can lead to product build-up in the loc resulting in weakened, dirty locs that are prone to bursting. So what now? Are we beautiful, loc’d sisters and brothers destined to a life of dull, lackluster hair? Napturally no! There are other ways to restore the lustre and shine of locs without traditional conditioners.
Here are my 4 top alternatives.
Use a 2 in 1 Shampoo and Conditioner
· I have noticed that these types of shampoos have the same conditioning properties that you may be searching for, without the thick and creamy feel that makes it difficult to rinse out of the loc itself. It also means that after washing, your hair is not as dry and stripped of all its moisture as it would be with your usual shampoos.
Rose water & olive oil conditioning mist
· You can make this mixture yourself at home and spritz the locs after shampooing for conditioning purposes. Rose water leaves the locs hydrated, moist and soft, while olive oil is a particularly powerful moisturizer thanks to its thickness. The two mixed together make a perfect conditioning remedy for locs.
Virgin Coconut oil & an essential oil mixture
· This timeless oil mixture continues to be perfect especially for damaged locs. Coconut oil is renowned for its effective moisturizing and regenerative properties. Mix in your favorite essential oil for that ideal scent and apply to your hair after shampooing for a truly healthy shine.
Homemade deep conditioner
· Using Aloe Vera gel, virgin coconut oil and Jamaican black castor oil (ratio 2:1:1), you can create the perfect DIY deep conditioner that your locs will love. Mix the ingredients together and apply throughout the locs. Let the mixture sit in the hair while wearing a plastic cap for 20 mins. Rinse after deep conditioning and seal in the moisture with your favorite oil.
Now go out there and let those locs SHINE! Don’t forget to write us at Napturally to let us know how these methods worked for you.