As a little kid living in Kogi state, I remember seeing Wodaabe women with their long luscious hair and caramel-colored skin. They always dressed the same way, with same tattoos and henna designs. When we moved to Lagos state, I noticed that quite a number of Lagosians patronized Wodaabe women for their hair dyes and concoctions that was believed to made hair grow. Our landlady was one of these customers. Unfortunately, her hair never grew past her neck area. This could be because using products alone can’t make your hair grow, how you take care of your hair is much more important. However, these Wodaabe women with long & shiny hair do some things to their hair we can learn from. See Wodaabe women hair growth lessons below.
Moisturizing: Wodaabe women apply Mai Shanu (cow butter from raw cow milk) on their hair to soften it & also add shine. We may not have to go looking for Mai Shanu, but we must not forget the importance of moisturizing our hair regularly with water, natural oils & butters. Instead of Mai Shanu, you can use Shea butter or even mango butter to seal in moisture into your hair.
Protective Styling: One of Wodaabe women hair growth lessons is that of protective styling. All the Wodaabe women I have seen usually have their hair in stylish plaits. Because of the hot weather in the northern part of Nigeria as well as their religion, they sometime protect their hair in loose scarves. Now that the harmattan is here, protect your hair with low manipulative styles if you can.
Decorating: Multi-colored small & medium sized beads, cowries, bones, etc usually decorate their hair. These beads are arranged at the tips of the braids & also wrapped around their foreheads. So, whip out your Alice bands, scrunchies & other accessories & let’s get stylish.
As I stepped out of the gate of my house this morning, I felt the cold breeze of the harmattan. I quickly went back into the house and took my pashmina. On my way to work, I noticed the usual haze that comes with harmattan mornings; it was then I realized that I am yet to put together a concrete hair regimen for this season. This weather is known for its dryness. Your wet clothes can be dried in less than 10 minutes with the wind of this weather. Luckily for me, my hair is already in a protective style (box braids). But then, I realized that protective styling my hair is not enough for a harmattan hair care regimen. I have decided to do a few things more.
1. LCO Instead of LOC: There’s been some argument that there is no real difference whether you do the LCO or LOC method. However, I realized that the LCO method keeps my hair moisturized for longer. I apply my leave in conditioner, followed by shea butter and then olive oil. I will be adding the LOC method to my harmattan hair care regimen.
2. Styling with Scarves: When I take out my box braids, I intend to style/cover my hair with scarves especially when going out in the mornings when the wind is at its driest. It is always a wonder to see how quickly your wet hair gets so dry & brittle by the harmattan wind. One has to be careful. No breakage allowed.
3. Daily Moisturizing: For the past two months, I have been moisturizing and sealing my hair every other day. But with this weather, I have to moisturize & seal my hair every day preferably in the mornings.
4. Satin Sleep Caps: I am already used to wearing my satin cap to bed every night, but sometimes, I am really tired & just fall asleep on the couch. With the harmattan, there are no excuses not to wear my satin cap to sleep.
5. Water Intake: I currently take about 2 liters of water daily. I intend to increase it to 2 & a half or even 3 to moisturize from inside out.
Having tried two styling products in the past which were not pleasant on my hair, I decided to go the natural route. There has been a lot of buzz about flax seed gel. I then watched Naptural85’s video on how she used it for her perm rod set which turned out really great. I also read about how to make the flax seed gel as well.
Step 1: I put small amount of water in a pot and added one cap of flax seed to it.
Step 2: After boiling for two minutes, I stirred it with a wooden cooking stick (omorogun) because it had started to thicken. I added some water to make it lighter.
Step 3: I then tried to strain it when it cooled, but it was too thick for the sieve. This could be because the holes in the sieve were too tight.
Step 4: I added more water and put it back to boil. The gel was lighter time. I put the content in a bigger sieve and used a spoon to spread it so that the gel can come out.
How to use flax seed gel for twist outs
I applied the gel on my nearly dried hair. I then sealed it with olive + coconut oil mix and Shea butter. I did this in small sections before twisting my hair.
Results: The curls of the twist outs were firm and not crunchy and dried out. It lasted for a week.
Have you tried flax seed gel before? What were your results?
Twice a year, Nigerian university graduates below the age of 30 go for a one year compulsory service to the country called NYSC (National Youth Service Corps). Prior to commencing the service year, they must embark on a 21-day rigorous camp training. By Thursday, some graduates will go to a different state to begin their NYSC. You may not have the time to style your hair regularly, so you might have to make a style that is easy to maintain & moisturize. Don’t let the Khaki dull your swag, check out our NYSC camp hairstyles you can try out.
1. BOX BRAIDS: These tends to last for a while before it gets rough. Hopefully, they should last for the period you will be in camp.
2.SENEGALESE TWISTS: You can do this with the regular extensions or you can do it with Marley hair. With Marley hair, even when the hair starts to get rough, it will still look beautiful.
3. FAUX LOCS: This is an easy maintenance style that you can style in a lot of creative ways. You can choose to ditch the regular faux locs & do goddess locs instead. 2-colored locs are always a winner.
4. WIGS: If you get bored easily with rocking one hairstyle, this one’s for you. You can switch your look with your favorite wigs. With wigs, you can have as many NYSC camp hairstyles as you want.
5. CROCHET STYLES: You can do crochet braids or even weaves.
Despite your hair is in a protective style, it is important to moisturize it regularly. Don’t forget to deep condition your hair before installing of these style and also when you take down the style.
Also go along with your satin caps or scarfs, your spray bottle, moisturizing oils & butters, bobby pins & scrunchies, shampoo & conditioner as well as any other hair item of your choice.
Do enjoy yourself & have a fun-filled NYSC camp experience.
Hello! It`s another wash day experience. This wash day I tried a new leave-in conditioner plus I also tried the LCO moisturizing method. Harmattan is here and my hair needs a new strategy to boost its moisture level.
Cleansing: I skipped the pre-poo session firstly because I was in a hurry and I had a lot of build-up on my hair and scalp already. After detangling and removing shed hair, I shampooed my hair in 8 sessions.
Deep Conditioning: I deep conditioned for about 2 hours, 30 minutes. My initial plan was to deep condition for 2 hours, but the never-ending house chores extended it. I rinsed off the product and soaked up excess water with a towel for a minute. I then wrapped my hair with the Magic Hair Drying Cap (See review here) for 45 minutes.
Moisturizing: It was time to try out my new leave-in conditioner. A little amount of this product actually goes a long way. I sprayed it on my palms before applying it to my damp hair. I then sealed in the moisture with Shea butter. To finalize the process, I sealed my strands with the coconut oil and olive oil mix. This is called the Liquid, Cream, Oil. LCO moisturizing method. I twisted my hair in about 8 sections for it to complete its drying.
The next day, I took out the twists and styled my hair into a bun for the week.
Did you wash your hair recently? How was your wash day experience?
There is a current hair trend in Lagos with everyone rocking one beautiful wig or the other. Firstly, These women enjoy the pleasure of switching up their hairstyles easily by wearing different wig styles. They also enjoy letting their hair & scalp breathe as often as they like. Instead of the regular cornrows beneath those wigs, everyone now does didi plaits for a number of reason:
Didi plaits make the hair really flat so that the wig can fit perfectly without any bumps pointing out of the wig.
Lots of Lagos hair stylists recommend it because they claim “it makes your hair fuller” and “it makes it grow faster”. This is a hair myth. It has not been proven to be true. I once discussed it here.
With the last reason given above, it is not unusual to find hair stylists physically trying to make the hair grow while making didi plaits. The plaits are tightly done and every single strand of hair is picked into the plaits, even those fragile temple hairs. Doing this can frequently can result in the following:
Traction Alopecia: This is caused primarily by pulling force being applied to the hair.
Hair breakage when you do not care for your own hair because it is in didi under a wig.
Hair breakage from rough handling the hair while plaiting it.
So, if you love wigs as much as I do, you can still do your favorite didi plaits only that:
Make sure your hair has been deep conditioned & well moisturized before heading off to the salon. This protects your from breakage when doing the plaits.
Plead with your hair stylist not to make the plaits to tight.
Remember to take care of your hair even while it is in didi plaits.
Instead of doing the straight “all back” style all the time, you can switch it up by doing “center parting”, “side parting”, etc. This is to prevent frequent tension on the same spot all the time.
Ever heard of a magic hair drying cap? Well, I was on the Jumia website when I stumbled on the Magic hair Drying cap. I was really curious to find out what was exactly magical about this product. I was not just sold on the word `magical`, I was attracted by the fact that it is a microfiber towel and it does not excessively dry out the hair. It has been said that regular towels can excessively dry out your hair and even the friction can cause hair breakage.
Price: The price was N580. I paid a shipping cost of N200. That is a total of N780.
Instructions: These were provided on the back of the pack.They are quite easy to follow as well.
Does my hair love it? I wore the cap after rinsing out my leave in conditioner. I was surprised it covered the volume of my hair. It did not excessively dry out my hairl.
Concern: There were purple turfs coming out of the cap which stuck to my hair. I am not sure if this is normal with all microfiber fabrics.
Will I continue to use Magic Hair Drying Cap? I will most likely use it interchangeably with my cotton t-shirt.
Ever dried your hair with a microfiber fabric? Please share your thoughts.