The online healthy hair communities goes through phases all the time. When I started my healthy hair journey, it was very common for ladies to have very strict, to the letter hair schedules. Shampoo on Saturday, Co-wash on Wednesday, Deep condition on both Saturday and Wednesday alternating between protein and moisture, Moisturize and seal twice daily, etc. You get the picture. I think that became a bit overwhelming for both those who developed the regimen and newbies looking to formulate their own. Now the popular thing is to say “my regimen is simple.” People have almost stripped down their regimen to the bare minimum – sometimes I think falsely so actually. Like I will see a thread on a hair forum with progress pictures where the person was able to grow their big chopped TWA to BSL in two years and when asked what’s your regimen? They respond with ‘my regimen is simple, I shampoo when I want, deep condition when I have time, moisturize when my hair needs it’. It always makes me look at the person with the side-eye. And yes, in MY head, they can feel my stare! lol. Anyway, what I think happens is they probably were stricter earlier in their hair journey and after achieving a certain level of health and determining which products work best with their hair were able to enjoy a bit more simplicity. That and the fact that the “trend” right now is to have a simple regimen. But this whole idea of doing things when your hair needs it is the topic of today’s discussion so let me get back to that.
My advice to women is to do things before your hair needs it and I’ve stated it in my healthy hair handbook. For example, why wait until your hair feels dry to moisturize it? I prefer to moisturize regularly so that it never has that feeling. I would think there is a lag time between the time your hair needs moisture and when you actually notice the dryness, during which your hair is prone to breakage. So I’d like my hair to always have what it needs, not wait for it to be reflected in its look and feel before I react.
Remember the movie Two Can Play that Game? When Wendy Racquel Robinson’s character was explaining Vivica Fox’s plan and said the key is to know your man’s schedule? The time between when he wants sex again from you and when he will get it from someone else? Okay, I know that seemed to come out of left field but go with me, ‘kay? Your hair is the same way. The key is to find your hair’s schedule – the time between when you do part of your regimen and when it will need it again to keep it in optimal health. You must learn if your hair needs moisturizing and sealing every day, twice a day, every other day, etc to not become dry. Does your hair pretty much always feel clean if you shampoo it once a week as opposed to feeling dirty by waiting to wash every other week? If so, wash it weekly don’t wait until it feels like it needs it. Do you see what I’m saying now? I think it is important to prevent your hair from having a specific need (as much as possible) rather than waiting to react to when there is an obvious need.
So whenever I see someone say “I wash when it feels dirty” or “I moisturize when it feels dry” I cringe a little bit. I’m not saying we need to go back to the days of a hardcore detailed healthy hair journey regimen, but I think its important for each of you to learn your hair’s “schedule” to keep it as healthy as possible.