If you haven’t learned why sealing natural hair is so important then this post is for you! Your hair may appear dry and this could be caused by you doing all the right things yet not sealing in the moisture.
Why Sealing Natural Hair Is Game-Changer For Your Hair Moisture!
If you are natural I am sure that you hear all the time that sealing natural hair is necessary to maintain the health of our curls.
But if you don’t seal your natural hair, will you see a decline is the health of your hair?
Let’s get to know our hair a moment!
The Nature of Natural Hair & Sebum
Dry hair means thirsty hair, hair that is not properly moisturized.
The inability of natural hair to retain moisture is closely, if not solely, connected to the shape of natural hair, which makes it difficult for sebum (hair’s natural oil) to travel along its length.
The latter keeps hair conditioned and lubricated and creates an external barrier that keeps the hair protected. In the absence of sebum, our hair becomes dry.
This is definitely why so many transitioners, if not all, are such grade A students in the “Graduate School of Natural Hair”.
We spend countless hours reading, watching and collecting photographic inspiration and information about natural hair. We want to avoid past mistakes and keep our hair as moisturized as possible.
We know that to keep hair moisturized we need water, oil and/or emollients (products that “marry” water with oil). While some can successfully do this without much difficulty others are not so lucky.
Therefore, many resorts to sealing their hair as this will mimic the function of sebum in the hair shaft – create a barrier (seal) to keep moisture inside.
WHAT IS SEALING NATURAL HAIR?
Sealing is when you apply an oil or butter (or even aloe vera juice but more on that later!) to your hair after moisturizing your hair with water or a water-based product. The intention is to lock the moisture into your hair so it doesn’t become dry or brittle.
I remember back to my school days when I did that experiment in chemistry class where you put water in two jars and add a layer of oil to just one of the jars. By the next day, half of the water in the jar without oil had evaporated whilst the jar with the layer of oil was still nearly full.
This is the logic and science behind sealing your hair!
WHAT IS THE BEST PRODUCT FOR SEALING?
There are multiple products you can use to seal your hair. Any natural oil will do the job.
These include lighter oils (such as coconut oil, jojoba oil, grapeseed oil etc) or heavier oils (such as avocado oil, olive oil, castor oil etc) – I tend to use oils when it’s warm outside. You can also use butters, such as shea butter, mango butter, avocado butter, etc.
Butters are obviously heavier than oils so they’re better suited to people with thick hair or when it’s cold outside. I ALWAYS seal with a butter during the winter – for me, when it’s cold, oils just don’t cut it. But there is an alternative for my fine hair sisters.
IS SEALING NECESSARY?
Well after you’ve spent a whole day pre-pooing, shampooing, cowashing, deep conditioning and moisturizing your hair, the last thing you want is to end up with dry hair because you didn’t lock all that moisture in! So I always recommend sealing your hair.
I noticed a HUGE difference in the health of my hair when I started sealing my hair. Apart from the fact that the sealants lock the moisture in, many of the oils/butters used as sealants contain nutrients that are highly beneficial for your hair.
Sealing can also help reduce frizz, reduce tangling, increase length retention and soften the hair. That being said, I follow a few naturals on Instagram who don’t seem to seal their hair (they are in the minority though!).
As we all know, everyone’s hair is different and responds to different things but for the vast majority of people, sealing is and should be a necessity.
Remember that when it comes to hair, health is the most important thing, regardless of if your hair is natural, relaxed or transitioning. Sealing will improve your hair’s health!
What else to check before sealing..
Do a Porosity Check
Most curly hair is highly porous, which means it has an open cuticle that allows moisture to easily escape and leaves you open to breakage.
Here’s how to tell if your hair is porous: Place a couple of hairs in a cup of water. If it sinks in less than a couple minutes, it’s porous.
Now what? Here’s how to care for porous hair: Step away from the flat iron and blow dryer, avoid color, trim your ends regularly, and apply weekly deep conditioning treatments with a gentle heat source (like a thermo heat cap).
Always do a Proper Sealing
Sealing is locking moisture in the hair, specifically the ends. To do, apply a leave-in conditioner with water as its first ingredient (try Qhemet Cocoa Tree Detangling Ghee), and then seal with shea butter or oil.
The molecules in most butters/oils are too large to pass into the hair, so they stick to the outside of the shaft, trapping in the moisturizer!
When sealing after your regular washing routine, apply your conditioner to damp hair in a downward motion. Then apply your butter or oil, concentrating on your ends, and style as usual.
There you have it, Why Sealing Natural Hair Is Game-Changer For Your Hair Moisture!
What is your favorite oil for sealing?
What to read next? I’ve got you, girl!
- Natural Hair Growth Tips For Beginners
- Why Trimming Natural Hair Is Key To Your Hair Growth!
- 17 Supreme Natural Hair Tips For Better Hair Growth!
- The Pros & Cons Of Transitioning From Relaxed To Natural Hair
Xo, The Natural Hair Lover