When I started to ask professional hairstylists which DIY hair treatments were worth trying, I assumed we would receive a list of the usual suspects: avocado, egg, mayo, aloe, some hard-to-find oil, etc. You can imagine my surprise when the stylists—who all work on natural afro-textured hair—said a variation of the same thing: they don’t really recommend any. So we asked Rhonda Pope, a stylist and owner of the Hydra-Bar Salon, why DIY hair masks are actually bad for your hair. Read on to discover what she had to share!
(Image Source: Unsplash / Etty Fidele)
About the Expert
Rhonda Pope is a professional stylist with 12 years of experience in naturally curly hair. She is known for her signature Hydra Sets and Hydra Press and works out of her Hydra-Bar Salon in Coral Springs, Florida.
Why Are Natural Hair Professionals Against DIY Hair Treatments?
There are so many recipes for DIY conditioners, detoxes, and growth stimulators online. Is there nothing online worth trying? Pope simply says no. “Most of the ones I’ve seen require food. People put up a good attempt but hair doesn’t work that way. It’s only going to take in so much.” Lawing makes a fantastic point, a lot of times the DIY treatments that are so popular in the natural hair community can’t actually do much because the molecular structure may be too big to penetrate the hair shaft. Instead, they stay on top of the hair.
Pope adds, “I think people forget or may not realize hair is one of the body’s defenses. Sure we dress it up but it’s meant to be the first line of defense and its job is to push things away so putting in some of these DIYs isn’t logical when you understand what the hair does on a scientific level.”
When it comes to finding the right ingredients for healthy hair, Pope’s recommendations are simple. “Just make sure it has water like everything else in life that we want to take care of.” She adds, “Stop putting blockers like oil in place that won’t allow the hair to get what it needs.”
If someone absolutely wants to try a DIY treatment for the hair, a tea rinse is a good option. Tea rinses are not only great for soothing the scalp, enhancing one’s hair color, and even reducing shedding. They are water-based which seems to be the one thing every stylist we spoke to mentioned as an essential part of any hair routine.
The more time passes, the more we learn that taking care of natural hair isn’t that complicated. I love that for us.
Have you ever wondered if coconut oil is right for your hair? Check out THIS article about why the popular oil is not for everyone.