I'd always suggest taking your time and being as gentle as you feel necessary, even if it takes double the time. All those rough detangling sessions WILL add up. Plus, being gentle will inevitably become habit, and not something you have to focus on doing every time you touch your hair..
Anyways I'm still trying to find a way to wash my hair quickly and healthily. Right now I'm focusing on being gentle, and my wash day is still a little too long for my liking
- I've recently eliminated using combs completely so the only tool I use in my hair is my fingers. To detangle I just pull out small pieces of hair and run my index and thumb down, as if I was smoothing them. This brings all the shed hair down to the bottom and releases them. Any further tangles, I just pull apart. Its definitely easier said than done, and I had to try a few techniques before perfecting what worked for me. Overall, this takes about two hours.
- Products-- Spray bottle with warm tap water (to dampen and soften hair), extra virgin coconut oil (to give hair some lubrication and prevent unnecessary breakage)
- As of recently I've gone back to washing my hair in 8 twists. I work in quarter sections of my head. I take a quarter size amnt of shampoo and work it into the roots of that section and smooth whatever is left onto the hair shafts. I mostly rub it into my scalp, and also scratch lightly if needed, then rinse. On the second wash of that section, I use only half the shampoo I used the first time, and start on my scalp and let it lather enough to run throughout the whole section, then rinse. To prevent tangles, I try to keep the hair in the twists the whole time and just work the lather through the hair by squeezing. This takes 30 minutes.
- Product- DHD H2O Anti-Itch Shampoo
3. Deep Condition/Oil Rinse
- To make my deep conditioning experience more rewarding I have to always add castor oil first. So I use about a quarter size amount of castor oil on each of those 8 twists, so I have the 8 twists slathered in castor oil now. Then I go back around and add my favorite deep conditioner. I put a plastic cap on, and a bunch of hats to trap in the heat, and then I let it sit for about an hour. Putting in the oil and deep conditioner (while being gentle) takes 20 minutes and then I sit for 1 hour.
- Products- cold pressed castor oil, Aubrey Organics Glycogen Protein Balance
4. Leave-In and Sealant
- Almost done with my wash day! At this point I'm done with washing and rinsing and all that, I just have to add some final moisture to my hair so it doesn't air dry hard (I don't use heat to dry my hair). My hair is still in the 8 twists that I started with to shampoo, so I either use those same 8 sections or I make more sections if I want them to dry faster. Usually I take down each of the 8 twists one by one. I add my leave-in conditioner (hair moisturizer that you use after washing on damp hair) and then I add a tiny drop of castor oil and rub that through the section as well to seal in the moisture. Then I just braid it, and leave it to dry, moving on to the next section. Overall I have 8 moisturized and sealed braids by the time I'm done. This takes a wholeee 1 hour.
- Products- Kinky Curly Knot Today Leave-In Conditioner, cold-pressed castor oil
5. Daily Moisturizer
- This next step doesn't usually happen on wash day, but on the days following it. After unbraiding my braids to wear my hair in a braid-out style, I have to rebraid at night time, to both stretch my hair out some more, and to avoid tangles and knots forming from sleeping on loose hair. While rebraiding I use my daily moisturizer and a tiny bit of castor oil to seal it in.
- Products- Qhemet Biologics Burdock Root Butter Cream, cold-pressed castor oil
That's it! Overall, my wash day takes about 5 hours, but there are always breaks, or things that come up so I usually try to give myself a little more time than just a 5 hour slot of time to do my hair. :)