Tailoring Your Own Hair Care Routine: A Comprehensive Guide For All Hair Typesinasali
The term “hair care routine” is being used all around the world wide web so much in the last few years and we are sure it got you wondering “what’s a hair care routine? Should I follow other people’s routines or should I make one up?”. Truth be told, we prefer and love customized routines based on each person’s preferences and lifestyle and this is what we want to discuss thoroughly. Let’s take it from the start.
A hair care routine consists of the set of products and tools you use for your hair, paired with how you use them, how often, as well as any styling or hair care techniques you do to keep your hair in tip top shape. There are many variations of hair care routines because of the huge range of products, tools and techniques available. You will find it the best to experiment with a few things and fine tune your hair care routine to perfection.
Before building your routine, you need to consider a few points in order to determine the desired outcome
- Your hair porosity and texture.
- Whether you want a more moisturizing routine or a damage repair routine.
- Whether you want more definition or more volume.
- The budget and amount of time you’re willing to spend on your hair.
- Scalp conditions that you may have that could affect your decisions.
Hair Porosity and Texture
Knowing your hair porosity lets you add little but crucial tweaks to your routine. Low porosity hair has a hard time letting in moisture, so the best bet is to apply indirect heat to your hair while conditioning or deep conditioning for more moisture. On the other hand, high porosity hair takes in much moisture but lets go of it quickly, so it needs more sealing products and possibly repairing products too.
Hair texture also plays a big role, because straight/wavy hair can be easier to manage with lightweight products, while curly and coily hair of thicker textures mostly need thicker products.
What You Want Out of It
The goal of your routine greatly determines the final shape of your routine; if your ultimate goal is just moisture, you will seek products rich in humectants and oils. Even when seeking moisture, you can choose if you want super moisturized defined hair, or you could trade off some of the hydration in lieu of volume.
Alternatively, if your hair is damaged and you’re looking for a reparative routine, you will choose products rich in proteins that will aid in reconstructing your strands.
Budget and Time
A hair care routine can range from affordable and quick to expensive and time consuming. You get to choose your routine however way you like so that it suits the amount of money and time you’re willing to put in. At the end of the day, what good is a hair care routine that you can’t be consistent with?
Existing scalp conditions play a big role in choice of products and some hair care techniques that you should or shouldn’t use.
The Pillars of a Hair Care Routine
The first step is to cleanse your hair and scalp to work with a clean slate. The thing that always comes to mind is shampoo, but we always advocate using sulfate-free shampoos or using shampoo alternatives.
Some people like to always “co-wash” their hair, which is use a lightweight conditioner to massage their hair and scalp. Other people find that it weighs their hair down or doesn’t work for them all the time, so they use a shampoo every few washes to clarify their hair. Other people prefer a natural approach and use apple cider vinegar rinses or natural cleansing herbs like Sidr.
In all cases, you need to experiment and find out what’s best for you, but steer away from harsh sulfate-containing shampoos to avoid drying your hair out.
Conditioning or Deep Conditioning
Using a hair conditioner after cleansing hair is absolutely crucial. It restores your hair’s moisture, eases tangles and knots, and helps fight frizz.
Deep conditioning, however, is a thicker denser product that gives a higher hydration dose to hair. Usually, you should use a deep conditioner instead of the regular conditioner once a week, and if your hair needs an extra kick of moisture you can use it more frequently. Just make sure you don’t overuse deep conditioners because over-hydrated hair becomes weak, brittle and frizzy.
There are debates on whether to detangle hair while it’s wet or dry. From our experience both are okay if you do it right. So if you’re detangling your hair when it’s wet, make sure that you saturate it in conditioner and that you gently use your fingers or a wide-tooth comb to detangle it starting at the bottom and going up as you detangle the knots. If you feel more comfortable detangling your hair dry, then get a brush specific to detangling hair and brush your hair gently from the ends and all the way up.
Applying a Leave-in Conditioner
Leave-in conditioners are lightweight conditioners that you apply after washing your hair and not rinse. They add further moisture and lessen tangles in the days between washes. Don’t skip this step and find yourself a good leave-in with no silicones, petrolatum or waxes.
When it comes to styling products, there are so many mixes and matches that you could do. Depending on your need, you can use a thick styling cream for more defined curls, or an alcohol-free mousse to give your curls more oomph and volume, and/or a gel to hold all the curls in their shape. Experiment with products that are made for your hair texture and play around with the sequence of using styling products and find your best fit.
There are two good ways to let your hair dry, the first is to let your hair air-dry without touching it in the process, it is a low-effort way and could take little to long time depending on how fast your hair dries. If you need to speed it up and have more volume, then diffuser drying is the way to go.
Check out The Hair Addict’s Universal Collapsible Diffuser attachment and give it a whirl!
Upkeep Between Washes
After doing these steps, you definitely want your hair to look its finest until the next wash. Firstly, you should get satin or silky pillowcases to sleep on. These silky materials don’t draw moisture out of your hair like cotton does, and they don’t create friction against your hair so they won’t stir up frizz and fly-aways. Secondly, you should lift your hair up in a loose ponytail on top your hair -we call it a pineapple- so you don’t sleep on your curls and flatten them.
If you get frizzy strands and your wash day isn’t due yet, mix up a refreshing spray by diluting 1 part leave-in conditioner to 3 parts water and use it to spot-treat the troubled areas and they will be back to normal in no time.
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