Hair Care For Black Men
It’s time that Black men get the information they need to shine. Too often on sites like these, hair care or other cosmetic/appearance based articles are focused on the European/Western/White standard of beauty. But here’s the thing, our bodies are not built that way. From the tip of our hair to the bottom of our toes, Black men shine in different ways than their white peers. But for now, let’s focus on those tips, their roots, and the often curly bits in between.
So if you’re looking for some basic tips on how to maintain your beautiful locs, my king, then you’ve come to the right place.
Know Your Hair Type
First and foremost, you need to know yourself. That’s true in all facets of life. You want to fall in love? First, you have to fall in love with yourself. You want to have great hair? First, you need to know your hair. What does it look like naturally? What does it feel like when wet or dry? Typically, there are four types of hair that people of the African Diaspora exhibit.
- Type 1: Straight: Your hair naturally grows out flatly and will lay down without any need for products.
- Type 2: Wavy: Your hair can still lay down but only after a little fight. This type of hair is bendable and can range from fine to coarse. Let it grow out a bit, and you’ll start seeing “S” shapes.
- Type 3: Coiled: Seen often as loose or corkscrew curls, this is the type of hair that frizzes easily.
- Type 4: Kinky: Last, but not least, the typical “afro texture.” This hair type grows tightly and in compact curls from the very second it pops out of your head.
Read Product Labels
Now that you know what kind of hair you have, it's time to find the right products to work for your hair. First off, there are products out there that focus on each type of hair listed above. Find brands that fit the type you have. Next, avoid anything with chemicals like sulfate, isopropyl alcohol, formaldehyde or propylene glycol. These will dry and irritate your scalp and hair. Instead, go for natural oils like shea butter, coconut oil (yes, it’s not just for cooking), extra virgin olive oil, or sweet almond oil. Also, avoid products with fragrances if they’re not made with essential oils or other natural sources.
Shampoo Less Often
Next, you have to know that shampoo does not help everyone. In fact, it rarely helps Black hair. Your White peers may stare and judge once they hear the fact that Black folk don’t shampoo their hair every day or every other day, but that’s because the stuff doesn’t affect us the same way.
Experts recommend that Black men only wash their hair once a week. Any more than that can lead to the loss of natural oils and the drying of your scalp.
Moisturize MORE Often
But here’s the trick to getting around the no shampooing/washing too often thing, you can still moisturize your scalp. There are a number of sprays, gels, and more that are made with natural products. They're made with your scalp in mind. Plus, you could always try how the tried-and-true natural oils (listed above) work on your hair.
When applying these products, rub them on your fingertips. Then, massage the product into your scalp. DON’T apply to your hair. If you do, you’ll just end up with a greasy head.
Black Men & Hair
At the end of the day, we all just want to feel good looking and confident. Putting time and work into our hair can help us achieve that. SO if you’ve been thinking about getting on top of your scalp and making it the best (and healthiest) it can be, try these beginner tips. Then, let us know how you fared in the comments below.