My hair arsenal

March 22, 2014 Naija girl next door 4 Comments

Hello beautiful people! It's the weekend and I have Pharrell's Happy playing over and over in my head and through my headphones :D

Ok here are the products I use -

These 3? They are never going aaaanywhere! They are my staples, my ride or die, my hair's best friends. I'm getting emotional :')
1. Spray bottle of plain water: I re-purposed an empty body spray bottle. This is my daily moisturiser. I've tried different stuff that other people swear by- adding conditioner or an oil to it, commercial moisturisers by brands like Kids Organics, ORS, Profectiv. And I keep coming back to good ol' water. No product build-up, plus I can control the exact amount of oil going into my hair since it all comes from sealing.

2. Spray bottle of oil: I can have almost any oil in this bottle at any time, single or a blend of oils. I use whatever is in there as a hair oil to seal; on my body twice a day after shower; on my face at night (I try to keep everything as natural as i possibly can).
  Right now, what's in there is mostly Extra virgin olive oil, some coconut oil, sweet almond oil and sunflower oil. It might be different when this gets exhausted.

3. ORS Replenishing Conditioner: I absolutely love this conditioner! You will hear this a lot. I use it once or twice a week, unless I'm wearing a weave or braids. Most times I add oils to it, other times I use as is. Every time:  super moisturised hair. It goes for about 1k or so and is in virtually every supermarket.

4. Vo5 conditioner: I use any one I see for my mid-week cowash. I don't think I've gotten the same one twice. I've used from their Tea Therapy range, their Moisture Milks range,  and most recently, the Repair and Protect range. Love them all. They get the job done. I love that they're silicone-free. Yay to no build-up! They're literally everywhere and cost no more than N700 in most places.

5. Whipped shea butter: I whipped up pure shea butter with water, coconut oil, olive oil, and a few drops of peppermint oil. This stuff is gold for my new growth, softens it up and makes detangling a breeze at even 6 months post relaxer. I can tell it's going to be indispensable during my transition to natural. I use it on my edges too, and for heavy sealing before any long term protective style- like the loc extensions I'm wearing now.

6. Shampoo: I started using this Doo gro Moisturising shampoo before I started my hair journey a year ago and I'm still on the same bottle. That shows 1. How infrequently I use shampoo to wash and 2. How much I dilute it when I do.
 I had it before I got to know sulphate-free shampoos are less drying aka better than sulphate shampoos (shampoos containing Sodium lauryl sulphate, sodium laureth sulphate, ammonium laureth sulphate etc).
 I hadn't noticed any dryness after washing with this shampoo, in fact I liked it, so I wasn't about to throw it out. I started diluting it instead. No complaints. It's almost exhausted now so I'm planning to try a sulphate-free shampoo next. I'll let you guys know how that goes.

7. Palm kernel oil: Yes, that black stuff that looks like cough syrup is our very own Nigerian black palm kernel oil as I like to call it. I used it for the first time 2 weeks ago. I had read online that it is similar to coconut oil in molecular structure and so can penetrate the hair shaft and prevent protein loss. A native of Ile-ife (where I am at the moment) helped me get some (very very cheap) and I gave it a go.
    It has a very smokey, nutty smell. I'm pretty sure it contains a lot of carbon from the charcoal fire used to extract it cos it is so dark. I mixed a full tablespoon in with my deep conditioner and rinsed out after an hour under my plastic cap.
Results? Wow! My new growth was softer than everrrr! It was amazing, the best result I've ever gotten from a deep conditioning session. My friend Tope did the same thing and had the same results. I had to be sure it was just this oil so I had Alex seal with it. She got instantly softened, defined new growth!
   Can you tell how excited I am? I could be poster girl for this oil. Somebody hire me! Lol.
I would say though, that the smell is strong and it stays on. Initially I liked it but 24 hours after rinsing it out, I still had a cigarettey smell lingering on. I will suffer through it for the results anyway. It's that good.

8. Honey honey honey: It does great things in a pre-poo concoction or in a deep conditioner. It makes my hair shine and feel very moisturised. I got this brand for N900 and it passed the two tests I tried for real honey, from The Natural Nigerian site here. I don't use it on my hair as much as I used to because I read that over time and with continuous use, honey lightens hair. That would be useful if you want that but I like my dark hair. Darker would be even nicer. It's still the star of my skincare regimen though.

9. Mustard oil: An oil I started using 2 months ago. I saw a bottle in the supermarket and googled it. Turns out it's well used by Indian women in scalp massages to darken hair, promote growth, nourish hair. I snatched the bottle off the shelf and I'm still loving it. Some people online have a problem with the smell but I don't mind it. I tried it with the inversion method (look out for a post on that), and used it to pre-poo.
   It's not a penetrating oil and it's one of the more 'oily' oils so I don't leave it in. After rinsing out, my scalp always feels so good- fresh, no itch; and somehow my hair feels and looks...well, thicker. I thought it was a fluke the first time but it's been consistent. It's going to be a regular in my stash from now on.

   Any hair guru will tell you it's more about your methods than specific products.  Understand that what works for one person's hair may not work for yours, so just pay attention to how your hair responds to what you do and what you put it in it.
    If your hair feels dry or weak, is breaking, looks dull, and you feel you're doing all the right things, reevaluate your products.
    Things I cut out completely: mineral oil (paraffinum liquidum), petrolatum, silicones (basically ingredients that end with -cone), drying alcohols like 'denatured alcohol, ethanol etc). My hair flourished when I did.

Questions? Comments? Feel free to drop a line. Xx


  1. True! Its more about methods than products and I too really dig the Nigerian Black Palm Kernel Oil (NBPKO). It does grow hair and I kinda like the perfumy smoky smell.

    1. Yeah it earned a place among my staples as soon as I tried it. It couldn't have come at a better time. Anything to ease this transition

  2. Hi, What s ur advice on keeping my hair moisturized especially d new growth during d harmattan. Am presently in Zaria- Kaduna state & d weather s cold wit a very dry wind. My previous regimen b4 d weather change seems nt 2 wrk anymore, used 2 moistrizd wit water,profectiv leave-in & almond oil (or any oil available). Now do dis almost thru out a dy. I pre-poo,use sulphate- free shampoo,deep conditn on wash dys. Tnks

    1. Hi Lily, sorry for the late reply. I know how harsh the harmattan winds are, hang in there. We're in November so I'll do a full post on this. Cheers!