BELGIUM – Globally, more women are embracing their kinks and curls. Loads of women worldwide are putting aside flat iron’s, chemicals, weaves and synthetic hair. These choices women of color nowadays make are not only life changing, they are disrupting businesses as well. I’m Janine Van Throo, the Natural Hair Therapist and founder of Just Natural Consulting.
Getting Your Natural Hair Back
With this choice comes another challenge and this is education. For years treating our hair with chemicals or wearing wigs and weaves has been the norm for a woman of color. We never learned how to treat our own hair in its natural state.
The educational system worldwide never took in consideration that there is even such a thing as natural hair or that there should be education on this subject. Those who’ve mastered braiding techniques learned it from either their mother, grandmother aunt or other woman in their circle.
We as women, have through the years, forgotten how to treat our own natural hair. So now that many of us are returning back to being natural, embracing our hair in its natural state and accepting who we are. We realize that many of us don’t know how to actually treat and maintain our natural hair.
Another thing to take into consideration is the fact that until this day, a lot of hairdressers still tend to advise ladies of color to either wear wigs, weaves or use chemicals to treat their hair.
Instead of empowering us to keep the hair in its natural state. Majority of Black or Afro hair dressers simply do not know how to properly treat natural hair. Their focus has always been on treating our hair with chemicals to get it “smooth and look decent’.
How to Properly Treat Your Hair
In today’s world it is unthinkable that with the diversity of women there still is no education on how to properly treat our hair. We all know that education is one of the most powerful tool that we use to empower ourselves.
This is why I developed NISH, a certification program for natural hair care. With this certification program I hope to help woman start their own business and offer them the opportunity to become financially independent.
Especially today, every woman needs to be prepared to earn her money. We as women need to have a mindset to not only earn our own money, but to excel in this as well. For ourselves and for the next generation of women. We need to set an example for them as well. I believe it is most important for women all over the world, single or married, to have a certain level of financial independency.
Top 5 Stop-doing List
- Stop using oils or Butters as a moisturizer for your Afro natural hair. Although oils or Butters may have moisturizing properties, that does not make them a moisturizer or a conditioner. Afro hair or natural hair tends to be dry and it needs moisture. To be more accurate it needs a combination of water, oil and other nourishing ingredients. Using only oils will not give your hair the moisture it needs!
2. Water is not a moisturizer . Now let me explain that. When we put water on our hair, our hair has the ability to take up the water through the cuticles ( the outer layer of the hair). However, if the cuticles are “open” the water evaporates , taking away more water / moisture from the hair. Leaving the hair even more dry than before. To avoid this, one simple trick is to seal the water with a bit of oil ( however this would not be sufficient to properly condition or moisturize the hair). The same applies with adding oil to your hair. No matter how great the properties of the oils are, they will not be enough (on their own) to give the hair what it needs. Since our hair needs both water and oil, you need to combine those two.
A cream based product is your best bet. A cream based product infused with strengthening and conditioning ingredients will make sure that whatever product or whatever ingredient is there to penetrate the hair to give it the moisture and conditioning it needs.
3. Not washing the hair regularly; I know that some of the ladies think that because our hair is dry, they shouldn’t be washing it. I do get where the thought comes from, the problem however, when you choose not to wash your hair is this: all the mites and bacteria on your scalp, get the chance to increase in number. An increased number of mites on your scalp, may eventually lead to scalp issues such as hair-loss.
4. Buy “fast growth” products; Now I know that it’s tempting and I know that we all want long hair. I also know that we all want it the easy way. Because if I told you that I developed a product and it’s made of bird poop and with this product you could grow your hair 10″ overnight. If I will start selling this product I am sure that within the within 15 minutes I would have sold out. Ladies! There is no product that you apply to your hair that can make your hair grow . Products that you apply to your hair are for the maintenance of your hair. Nothing! I repeat, nothing that you apply to your hair will make your hair grow. Your hair is biologically dead material. If you want to grow your hair you should start from the inside, you should give your body the nutritions that it need to be able to make hair.
5. Do not look at others people’s results; Everybody is unique and so is our hair. You cannot look at the result of your sister, neighbor, friend or even at the model on television, and expect the same result. 1st of all you don’t have the same lifestyle, background nor live in the same geographical area or even eat the same food. The only way to make sure that you get results, is to start listening to your hair.
Get to know the need of your own hair, don’t look at other people’s results!