Incorporating a rinse into your natural hair care regimen can do wonders for your hair by stimulating growth, encouraging length retention, locking in precious moisture and giving your curls and coils body and shine.
The good thing about natural hair rinses is that all the ingredients can be found in your pantry and are inexpensive.
Here are six rinses and their benefits that you should consider adding to your weekly or monthly dose of TLC routine for your hair.
Apple Cider Vinegar
This product is becoming ubiquitous with natural hair and beauty routines and for good reason. When applied to your hair, apple cider vinegar makes your hair cuticles lie flat. A flat hair cuticle is always a good thing because:
- Your hair locks in moisture and protein which are lost to the environment due to evaporation.
- Your hair appears shinier because light reflects from a smooth surface.
- Flater hair is easier to detangle.
- It increases your hair’s elasticity so that it doesn’t snap or break under tension.
To do this rinse, mix 1 part of apple cider vinegar with three parts of water. That is, if you have a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar, mix it with three tablespoons of water.
After shampooing your hair, run the mixture throughout your hair and let it sit for about 1-2minutes then follow up with a conditioner.
You can use this rinse once a month as an overuse can lead to dryness.
A small caffeine content has been shown to penetrate your hair follicle and stimulate growth. Black tea also tends to stain your hair and darken it, making the rich dark colour of your curls to pop more. Because black tea also strengthens hair, it can minimize the amount of shedding and help to retain length.
To make this rinse, brew a cup of weak tea and allow it to collect until it’s lukewarm.
Run the tea throughout your hair after shampooing and let it sit for no more than thirty minutes. This is because, if your follicles absorb an excess of caffeine, it can be counter-productive and lead to a stunt in growth. It is also the reason why the tea you brew should be weak.
It might be a little hard to determine how much caffeine is enough for your hair so you might want to consider buying a caffeine infused shampoo in the future or to keep experimenting with ratios until you find that balance that works for your hair.
This rinse works great as a bimonthly treatment.
Baking soda is good for clarifying hair and removing the product that has built up on your strands. Its alkaline nature lifts the cuticle of your hair and helps it to absorb moisture.
However, baking soda on its own may not be very beneficial to your hair as once it lifts the hair cuticle, it leaves it open and makes your hair prone to dryness.
When you mix it with apple cider vinegar, the acid in the vinegar will balance the alkalinity of the baking soda and return afro-textured hair to its natural acidic state. The good thing about this rinse is that it can be a substitute to your shampoo due to the super clarifying nature of the two ingredients.
To make this mix, add one part of baking soda to two parts of water and run it through your hair. Do not rub it in as the granular nature of baking soda is abrasive and can wreak havoc on your hair shaft.
After you rinse it out, you should follow up with a very dilute solution of apple cider vinegar to restore the pH balance of your hair.
You can do this rinse once a month.
The ingredients that make up beer (hops, barley, and water) contain oils that are rich in nutrients and that help to strengthen hair. The sugar present in beer also seals the hair cuticle giving your hair body and shine.
After shampooing your hair, run a warm can of beer into your hair and let it sit for about 3-5 minutes while wearing a shower cap. Afterwards rinse your hair thoroughly then follow with a conditioner to get rid of the smell. If you don’t mind the smell of alcohol in your hair, you can skip the conditioner.
This rinse works well when used once a month.
The acidic nature of vodka helps to seal in moisture in your hair and prevent frizz.
You can incorporate it into your regimen by adding a shot of vodka into your shampoo or conditioner and mix it thoroughly then continue to use the products as you would normally.
Depending on the herbal tea, each has its own benefit to your hair.
- Green tea- stimulates growth, reduces shedding and helps to prevent dandruff.
- Rosemary and sage tea- darkens grey hair.
- Chamomile tea- brightens hair, especially if you have dyed your hair blonde.
- Hibiscus tea- promotes hair growth.
The method of preparation and use of the herbal tea rinses is the same as the black tea rinses.
You can delve more into the science of how the rinses work and to read more on other rinses that I have not mentioned on this website.
Featured image via Ebony.com.