Wash and Go’s have been my staple style throughout my natural hair journey. However, once I became pregnant and had my son in 2013, my hair type changed abruptly from type 3 to type 4 and never reverted back to it’s original curl pattern. My hair was still fine in density, it was just the curl type that changed. I had to relearn my hair and which products to use all over again. Here are my tips for achieving your best wash and go for type 4 natural hair:
Here are my tips for achieving your best wash and go for type 4 natural hair:
1) Cleanse with warm water: Stay away from hot water while cleansing your hair. Hot water naturally opens up the pores which removes product build up and impurities from the scalp and hair. The problem is that natural oils (sebum) end up being stripped from the hair as well. These natural oils are necessary for strong, shiny and healthy hair. It’s best to use warm water rather than hot when cleansing. Warm water has the same ability to open up the pores to remove product buildup and impurities without stripping the hair.
2) Style in the shower with cool/cold water: I have always styled my hair in the shower throughout my natural hair journey. Especially since my hair type has changed, I’ve noticed the more saturated my hair is the better my results. When our hair is saturated there is more opportunity for moisture and product retention. This happens because cold water helps to seal the hair shaft and cuticles. Our hair will soak up the products much more efficiently while wet and styling with cool water helps to seal it all in. This will make for more defined and lustrous curls/kinks/coils.
3) Use a leave-in: This is one of my must do tips! Our hair is way too thick and complicated not to use a leave-in. Shampoo and conditioner alone won’t cut it. I’ve been a fan of using regular conditioners as leave-ins since the beginning of my journey. I’ll share some of my faves in another post. You want to make sure that your hair has that extra layer of moisture before applying your styling products. That extra layer of moisture makes for an amazing foundation which leads to the perfect hairstyle.
4) Stay away from heat: I know the diffuser can be tempting. I would use it occasionally when I had type 3 hair. I would achieve immense volume and it was always super convenient. I quickly realized after my hair type changed to type 4 it could no longer handle a diffuser due to its proneness to frizz. We should be limiting the movement of our hair while wet this way our kinks, curls and coils can set in place properly. More friction while wet equals more frizz when dry. The less manipulation the better your results. Type 4 hair plumps up with volume much better when it’s dry so the diffuser is not really needed.
5) Know the weather: Styling our hair in the Fall tends to serve as no issue. Winter months you should be sticking to more moisturizing products like butters and more emollient based products. Summer season is where it gets complicated. You should definitely stick to more water-based products and moisturize with creams rather than butters. If where you live is set to be a rainy, hazy, hot and humid day, leave the wash and go out of the picture. The heat and humidity will not allow you to be great ladies…lol. Instead opt for a protective style such as 2 strand twists or braids and pin up into a cute updo. You can also opt for a sleek bun or ponytail with a really good edge control paste. I’ll share some of my faves in another post as well. If you just have the triple H (hazy, hot, humid) in your forecast try to stay away from products with glycerin in them. Glycerin is tricky because it can serve as a double edged sword. I breakdown the story behind glycerin here: http://cebelamour.com/2015/01/04/product-review-curls-curl-ecstasy-hair-tea-conditioner-champagne-caviar-curl-elixir-and-curl-souffle/ .
6) Style in the morning: Do not, I repeat, do not style your hair at night. When it comes to wash day be sure to wash in the morning or early afternoon. Early mornings are preferred because you want to be able to give your tresses ample time to dry. I’ve learned the hard way so many times. I would wash and style at 5pm thinking that my hair would be completely dry. I would try to cut corners by going to bed with my hair still slightly damp. My hair would always result in one half of my head with perfect curls while the other half falling flat.
7) Section your curls: One of the biggest secrets behind a perfect set of curls, coils and kinks is in the method in which you apply styling products. Be sure to section your curls when styling this way you are giving each strand the attention it needs. The smaller the sections the better the results.
8) Seal your curls: My fine coils and curls still need moisture just like every other hair type. Sealing your hair allows for your hair to remain moisturizer as long as possible. Once moisture penetrates the hair shaft the oil will act as a protective outer barrier to prevent that moisture from escaping out of your hair shaft too quickly. Once that moisture leaves the hair shaft it evaporates, leaving your hair dry all over again. I use a lightweight oil like sweet almond oil because it absorbs very quickly. I also use Jamaican black castor oil from Tropic Isle Living, especially in the winter time, but I use a very small amount. If I use too much my hair will become pasty and weighed down.
What is your wash day routine? Do you have a particular method you follow? Comment below and let me know!
Here’s a snippet of my wash day routine:
Thanks for reading!
Let’s stay connected!