When it comes to looking after natural afro hair, there are so many steps to be followed in order for the bounce, vibrancy and strength of the hair to remain consistent. Especially with environmental aggressors against us, having our hair out naturally can be a burden. As the natural hair movement becomes increasingly ackowledged and celebrated, more and more individuals are wearing their natural hair out. But with this newfound freedom, how effective is your hair-washing routine?
Washing natural hair accurately and effectively is no easy task. If you want to leave hair stronger and more nourished than before, experiment with the LOC (Liquid Oil Cream) method. Introduced by beauty pioneer Rochelle Alikay Graham-Campbell, the LOC method is designed to moisturise natural hair – moisture being the number one key factor for healthy and long-lasting results.
Scroll down to discover my foolproof hair routine for natural hair, feat. the LOC method.
Start with your pre-wash – you want to apply an oil-based product to the hair before washing to prevent hydral fatigue. This common condition is the result of excessive swelling of the hair cuticle as water is absorbed and contracted within the cuticle, effectively weakening the hair shaft. Applying a product like coconut oil beforehand helps to act as a shield or protective barrier to the hair shaft to reduce this absorption – Shea Moisture’s 100% Virgin Coconut Oil Daily Hydration Leave-In Treatment will work perfectly.
Cleansing & Conditioning
For cleansing, apply the Superfruit Cleansing Complex 10-in-1 Multi-Benefit Shampoo, an antioxidant-rich shampoo which will not only renew vibrancy of dull and lacklustre hair, but hydrates, nourishes, rejuvenates, and softens natural hair. Iti’s infused with marula oil and biotin, a vitamin B that plays a vital role in the preservation of hair health. Following on from this, to help moisture retention, prevent breaking, and improve softness, condition the hair with the Superfruit Complex 10-in-1 Conditioner.
Applying a mask like the Manuka Honey & Mafura Oil Intensive Hydration Hair Masque is a great product type to add into your routine. The star ingredient is manuka honey, a specialised type of honey that has natural healing properties. This deep conditioner treats hair with a powerful dose of moisture and nutrients that truly transforms dehydrated and lacklustre hair.
The LOC Method
Now it comes to looping in the LOC method for optimal hydration and moisture. The first step, liquid, works to hydrate the hair once dry, with either a water or water-based product such as the Sugarcane Extract & Meadowfoam Seed Silicone Free Miracle Styler Leave-In Treatment. This offers an initial layer of hydration to moisturise the hair and acts as the perfect base post-washing.
Following on from this you should then apply an oil, which acts as a sealant. Certain natural oils such as coconut oil, olive oil or avocado oil can penetrate the hair shaft and meld with the internal hair structure to strengthen its foundation. Since oil and water do not mix, the oil holds the water in and acts as a protective shield.
Finally, to lock everything into place, apply a cream to lock in moisture and prevent it from escaping. The Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen & Restore Styling Lotion is perfect because it is not only an oil-based lotion but protects the hair follicles, restores moisture, and is formulated with strengthening ingredients such as shea butter, castor oil and peppermint to help hair grow fuller and longer.