Happy Monday Ladies! I’ve decided to start a new series, called Revive Your Hair, focusing on some basic techniques and information that will help your hair thrive. There are so many great new products and emphasis on creating fabulous styles that we can easily drift away from caring for our hair. Sometimes we just have to go back to the basics, revisit the oldies but goodies, and give your hair some extra TLC! So the first topic is baggying and the greenhouse effect.
Black hair is known to be the driest hair type; our kinks and coils make it hard for sebum (oils) naturally produced by our scalp to travel down the hair shaft which leads to dryness. Dry hair leads to brittle hair that breaks easily affecting our ability to retain our length as our hair grows. This is why keeping our hair moisturized – not just wet, damp or shiny – but truly moisturized with quality ingredients is so important.
Baggying and the greenhouse effect are both techniques designed to maintain high moisture levels in the hair, combating our hair’s proneness for dryness. Both involve applying product to our hair and covering with plastic – either saran wrap, a sandwich baggy or shower cap. The minor difference between the two is baggying is usually done with moisturizer or conditioner while the greenhouse effect is mostly done with natural oils. A heated, high humidity level environment is created aiding in deeper penetration of the product(s) and allowing the hair to stay moisturized longer.
There are a few essential steps that are important to baggy or do the greenhouse effect properly. Firstly, product selection. You should use moisturizing products with a high water content (being the first ingredient) and humectants (i.e. glycerin, panthenol) for your hair to reap the best benefits. Choose products that are as natural as possible – regardless of whether or not your hair is chemically processed. Only do the greenhouse effect on hair that is already properly moisturized either from deep conditioning or applying a moisturizer. Natural, heavy oils that are known to penetrate the hair shaft should be used.
After you’ve chosen quality products to baggy/greenhouse effect – the next precaution is to NOT allow your hair to stay perpetually wet or covered 24 hours per day. Keeping your hair too wet will lead to fragile, over moisturized hair. It is important to maintain the proper levels of moisture, softness and strength. Not to mention keeping your hair covered and wet will lead to growing mold and other scalp conditions. Cover at night but allow your hair to “breathe” during the day.
As mentioned, some ladies chose to cover their entire head with a shower cap, while others only baggy/greenhouse effect on their ends. To focus on your ends, after you apply your moisturizer or oil (or both), pull your hair together wrap in saran wrap or a baggy and secure loosely with an elastic, seen in the photo to the left.
As for product recommendations – there are so many amazing, quality moisturizers available now but I’ll give you my tried and true favorites: Bee Mine Luscious Balanced Cream Moisturizer (my #1 staple!), Jane Carter Revitalizing Leave-In Conditioner, S-Curl, Elasta QP Mango Butter, Mixed Chicks Leave-In Conditioner. Oils I recommend for the greenhouse effect would first include Jamaican Black Castor Oil (known to accelerate growth and a fantastic natural oil), coconut oil and olive oil.
I hope you enjoyed the first in the Revitalize Your Hair series!!! As I finish the last of my transition, my focus will be on maximizing my retention so I can regain my length as quickly as possible. Baggying is definitely going to be a part of the routine whenever my hair is not under a sew-in.