Let me just say that I get overwhelmingly excited with all things related to natural hair. When I start to get half low-ish on my homemade and purchased products, it’s like being a kid in a candy store all over again. What am I going to try this time, how did my hair do from the last time? Have I tried sunflower oil?
So, when it came time to pick the “must have” books in my quest to learn everything I can about natural hair, I realized just how hard this was going to be. There are lots of great books like Thank God I’m Natural and Curly Like Me that I’ve been wanting to read for a while, but I had an emergency that I needed to address…
After being natural for nearly 2 years, my hair had grown past my shoulders and was thick full and gorgeous. That was, until I flat ironed and blow dried it 3 times in 6 months. That was three times too many for my hair!
So, I wanted to know 2 things:
- what are the easiest, fastest, healthiest ways to grow and strengthen natural damaged hair and scalp?
- how do I take phenomenal care of my natural, kinky, coily hair?
Having these specific goals helped me narrow my search to books that included lots of information on healthy natural hair care and tips/techniques I could use to strengthen and repair my hair. Grow It! How To Grow Afro-Textured Hair to Maximum Lengths in the Shortest Time was the first book to pop up. With 143 positive reviews I added it and The Science of Natural Hair to my cart!
Grow It! is a slim, short book packed with information, tips, encouragement, and an honest perspective of what really makes natural hair grow to amazing lengths. The Grow It Process is a step-by-step guide for growing natural hair to longest lengths in the healthiest, most gentle ways possible. Chicoro gives her experience and recommendations of each stage which are very helpful when following the model.
I have been using the techniques from the book for 2 months and am happy with the results. I realized this while typing this post so to keep it brief and lavishly exciting, this is part one of a series on The Grow It Process.
The Grow It Model has six steps:
To detangle the Grow It Way, Chicoro suggests separating your hair into 4 to 6 sections and then loosely braiding each section.
I liked twisting better only because my hair was too “tangly” to braid. It was shedding big time and the twists worked well. The more I use this process, the more I like the loose braids. It makes it easier for me to get to my scalp and thorough cleanse and condition each section.
I also took my time with this section. I had gotten into the bad habit of rushing the detangling process. Chicoro is an advocate for preserving the hair you have for as long as possible. Carefully detangling your hair with your fingers will keep more hair on your head than down the drain. It’s also helpful to detangle under running water or with your favorite conditioner. This helps the tangles more easily separate from your hair without pulling or tugging. She goes into great detail here about when to use water, oil, or conditioner to remove a detangle, how to determine product build up on your hair and what to do when you hair does get tangled. It’s worth it to purchase the book on this section alone if you’re losing hair detangling like this:
This was after the first detangle in October with the Grow It Method. The scary part is that I’m pretty sure it would have been more if I hadn’t been as careful. Last week (December) this was how much hair I lost total from detangling, cleansing, conditioning, deep conditioning and styling! Very happy with this type of improvement:)
Some key points I took away from the detangling section of the book are:
- How you wash and condition your hair is as important as what you wash and condition it with
- Use your fingers to detangle your hair while it’s dry and again when it’s wet. She also suggests skipping the dry detangle part of the process depending on the condition of your hair. I chose to skip the dry detangle in the beginning because it seemed to add more tangles to my hair
- Get in the habit of smoothing your hair. Smoothing the hair is exactly as it sounds, you run your hands down your hair. While smoothing, Chicoro suggests paying close attention to how your hair feels. This way YOU can tell if the product is having any effect on your hair. I can tell how moisturized my hair is, whether or not I have a split end or a frizzy end, and if a product is going to work with my hair. Chicoro say s that smoothing also helps or trains your hair to grow in the right direction. When I did my second big chop, this was an even more important step as my hair started to grow.
Lavish want’s to know…