The photo above was taken at the start of week 4 (October 30th, 2014) and that was the last day my hair looked lovely. It was still full and fluffy despite it being oily at the top and it was very soft to touch. Transitioning was proving to be easy-peasy!
That night I did my second water rinse. The first water rinse was done the week before and it gave my hair even more body. My waves looked great! But this rinse did not result in anything wonderful. My hair became waxy and I hated it! It felt like I had tons of product residue in my hair which of course I didn't, and I wondered if I had messed things up completely by doing a second water rinse. It looked matted and wonky and felt dry and brittle when just the day before it felt so healthy and nourished.
So I purchased Happy Hair: The Definitive Guide To Giving Up Shampoo to see if this was normal and it turns out that the waxy stage is inevitable and was not a result of the water rinse at all. Phew!
Knowing this, I was able to accept the waxy hair which lasted about 3 days before I did my third water rinse. Then I made a bit of a boo-boo. I added some coconut oil to my damp hair after reading in the book how nourishing it can be, and I wanted to make the waxiness less dry in case it stuck around longer, but somehow missed the part that listed the amount (only a wee bit) and to only add it to your ends. I covered my hair from root to tip with the stuff so my hair has been pretty slick and wet-looking for days.
I have not bothered to try to rinse it out because it doesn't bother me in the least. My hair is always in a ponytail at home which is where I am 99% of the time these days, and I'd take this sleek look over the waxy stage any day. The waxiness was completely gone after that third rinse FYI, so maybe the coconut oil saved the day! Plus, I know it's only nourishing my hair so what's the biggie? It will transition through it eventually, and it's much less "wet" than it was on Monday.
Since I've started being shampoo-free, I brush my hair daily and sometimes a few times a day. As most of my girlfriends know, I've never been a hair brusher before now. I've always let my hair dry naturally and do what it does without any interference from me. No blowdrying. No products. No brushing. No curling. No straightening. No colouring. Nothing. But I know that distributing the natural oils while in transition is pretty key so now I'm brushing like a boss!
Also, I'm now beginning week 5. Woohoo! I'll keep you posted!
WEEK 5 UPDATE
WEEK 5 UPDATE
Since I don't often take pictures to simply showcase my hair (unless it's just been cut), you'll need to settle for the only picture I took of myself during week 5 (I was showing off the sweater Paige gave me - so cozy!). As for week 4, I was showing off my brand new hooded tweed fall jacket. IN LOVE.
Back to my hair. All of the coconut oil has finally left of its own accord (read about the oil mishap in my previous update above) and I did one water rinse during week 5. Overall my hair is back to being fluffy but it has also been incredibly naughty aka knotty all week. No matter how often I brush it, it seems intent on being difficult. It's just not soft and easy peasy to deal with. I'm not used to this because as stated previously, I never even needed a brush in my life before going shampoo-free. I can withstand this annoyance knowing that this is just part of the transition, but guaranteed I'd bail on the whole thing if I thought this was as good as it gets.
In my last update I mentioned the waxy stage that led to the coconut oil overload, and now I seem to be in what I'll call the "sludge" stage. Nothing you can see. Just a heaviness throughout much of the hair that feels sticky and icky. It's not that my hair is greasy or oily at the top like it was at the beginning. It's just dense. Or maybe it's actually the remains of coconut oil? I have no idea. Sounds more gross than it actually is, but I can't think of a better word for it. Kind of like a heavier greasiness maybe? I just want it all to lighten up a bit. My hair can't fall or flip very well because it's being weighed down right now. Still a major upgrade from the waxy stage, but nowhere near "normal" hair yet. Luckily I can still make it look cute, but I currently have less freedom with my hair than I did before the transition, obviously.
I'm not sure how much longer this will take but I'm in it for the long haul. As of this update I am 3 days into week 6.
Also, I'm really sick of the smell of my hair. Thankfully it's not stinky, but it's also not lovely. I have no idea how to describe it and I probably spend too much time smelling it and trying to figure it out, to be honest. Maybe this is the smell of natural hair? I don't know yet. I hope not. Time will tell. And besides, if it is and I don't grow to like it then there are plenty of natural ways for me to add some scented love to it. I really want my hair to smell like lemons more than anything else. Maybe that will be my signature hair scent once my hair is transitioned. Lemon juice works wonders for our hair!
Until my next update, my friend.
Explore my other Shampoo-Free posts here.
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