The natural hair blogger has been somewhat of a savior since the on-start of the highly publicized natural hair movement. When all of us were denouncing the credibility of our hair stylists (you know, the ones that helped to contribute to our experiences with hair loss as a result of not educating us about our tresses) there were a select few doing their due diligence at home and discovering the makings of their naturally curly, kinky, coily hair.
These kitchen-ticians concocted products, methods, recipes and remedies that were the long forgotten staples of our grandmother’s generation and the women that came before her. Their view from the ivory tower might be earned to some degree; however, we mustn’t forget the lost professionals of the hair industry who have the final say in how this world of hair works: the cosmetologist. The most egregious act being championed by many natural hair bloggers and religiously practiced by their dedicated followers? Ditching the shampoo.
“There’s an over-belief of the non-necessity of shampoos,” says Anu Prestonia, licensed cosmetologist with over 30 years in the hair industry and proud owner of Khamit Kinks Hair Salon in Brooklyn, New York. “There’s so much conversation around shampoos and co-washing and it has become a little extreme. You NEED to shampoo your hair at least once a week and not just a co-wash.”
Prestonia, who recently launched a natural hair care line Anu Essentials, believes that the anti-shampoo campaign began when women started wearing braids. She recalls clients walking into her salon with severe build up of product and debris in their hair after weeks (sometimes months) of shampoo-averse practices. Through a series of herbal rinses, essential oils, and rosemary oils, the ritual for breaking mildew and smells had become an all-too common necessity.
Shampoo, by definition, assists to clarify the scalp, banish debris, dirt and oil and offer a clean canvas for healthy hair. By not shampooing you risk build-up of products, breakage and the fungal dandruff Malassezia.
So what’s a no ‘poo girl to do who might be hesitant to strip moisture from her hair and fears dryness?
Ylorie Anderson, veteran beauty industry expert and vice president of marketing for natural hair care line EdenBody Works, suggests the use of a clarifying shampoo followed by a conditioning routine that includes weekly deep conditioning under a steamer. Anderson also suggests that during winter months when harsh weather can contribute to brittle hair that revitalizing shampoos made without sulfates should be used.
Have you been a supporter of the anti-shampoo movement? Will you ever go back?