Popular Wash Day Routine for Natural Hair

If you have been natural for just 1 minute you would know how important it is for naturals to have some for of wash day routine to ensure that their hair stays thriving and to ensure moisture is maintained.

We will be looking at different routines that have been circulating around social medias to help naturals find the best routine that could work for their lifestyle demands while ensuring that their hair thrives and grows to long lengths!

First we need to understand that all natural hair requires some form of cleansing in the form of shampoo.

Shampooing takes off all product from the hair to ensure that hair is squeaky clean, so all the moisture that has been removed needs to be added back in the form of conditioning.

The hair has been replenished, so all that is needed is frequent moisture to avoid breakage from the hair’s daily demands.

We will look at the most popular to the least popular (but still effetive)wash days to cater for every natural under the sun!

Most Popular.

Shampoo, Deep Conditioner and Moisture Method

Most naturals vouch for this because it is the most effective for them. You pick the day when you don’t have anywhere to go and spend a few (or a whole day).

You start with shampooing your natural hair. Then once the shampoo has been rinsed off, follow up and use a deep conditioner of your choice. Make sure what you pick has glycerin and lots of slip so all the tangles can melt away!

Cover your hair in the deep conditioner in a plastic cap and sit with it for about 30 minutes or more. Rinse that out and follow your moisture routine. The moisture routine can be done when your hair is damp and not dry.

Products you will need:

  • Shampoo
  • Deep Conditioner
  • Leave In Conditioner or Moisturizer
  • Oil / Butter
  • Cream

Other Tools You will need:

  • Plastic Cap
  • Microfiber Towel
  • Spray Bottle
  • Heat Cap (for further penetration into the hair shaft)

Pros: Most effective as hair is cleansed and moisture days after the routine.

: Shampoos can leave natural hair dry. Deep conditioning usually helps but some shampoos do too much cleansing, it takes days to get the moisture back.

    The Curly Girl Method.

    Co-wash, Deep Condition, Moisture Method.

    This method is the second most popular although it caused quite a bit of controversy. Many naturals feel like using a conditioner as a shampoo doesn’t cleanse the hair therefore it may hinder the growth progress of your hair.

    Many naturals vouch for this method as shampoos tend to strip everything in the hair shaft and it may take quite some time to get the hair feeling normal again since shampoos focus is to cleanse.

    Alternatively other naturals have come up with solutions that could still cleanse the hair without using shampoos to avoid the stripping feeling that it leaves and still be using the curly girl method to get rid of all bad ingredients that may be affecting the overall health of your hair.

    Co wash (conditioner washing) your natural hair by using a conditioner without any bad ingredients and no silicones and parabens to wash your hair.

    Deep conditioning using a curly girl friendly product. Then following up with the regular moisture routine (LOC or LCO method)

    Products you will need:

    • Conditioner or Co-wash product
    • Deep Conditioner
    • Leave in / Moisturizer
    • Oil / Butter
    • Cream (if needed)

    Other Tools You will need:

    • Plastic Cap
    • Microfiber Towel

    Pros: Max moisture as there is no shampoo that will strip the hair making it feel dry.

    Cons: No guarantee that the co wash actually cleansed the hair. Hair may need a deep cleanse if the scalp isn’t cleansed. Needs a method to keep scalp clean. Use light products to avoid quick build up since there is no guarantee that hair is cleansed properly.

    Lazy Routine No1

    Co washing – using conditioner to co wash then the same conditioner to deep condition and then follow up with moisture method, maintain moisture until ready to do a full wash/cleanse.

    Products you will need:

    • Conditioner
    • Oil
    • Cream

    Other Tools You will need:

    • Plastic Cap
    • Towel

    : Fast and quick if you are in a hurry or if you need to delay normal wash day a bit further in the week(s) to come.

    Cons: No cleansing. Based on conditioner it could cause build up.

    Lazy Routine No 2

    Wash, Condition. Moisture Method. Leave in braids/twists. Repeat

    Following instructions at the back of the product by shampooing, rinsing and normal rinse out conditioner. Follow up with a moisture routine.

    Products you will need:

    • Shampoo
    • Rinse out Conditioner
    • Leave in Conditioner
    • Cream
    • Oil / Butter

    Other tools you will need:

    • Microfiber Towel
    • Plastic Cap

    Pros: Also quick and great if you are in a rush.

    : Because it is a rinse out conditioner, there is little penetration so it’s not to commit onto.

    Organic Routine / Mixtress

    Clay Mask, Some food deep conditioner, Aloe Moisturizer, Homemade Oil

    This natural hair method is using all organic and non science products to grown natural hair. This method was inspired by naturals as they struggled to find products that were friendly to their hair and were not chemically produced or harmful to anything in nature.

    Most naturals wouldn’t trust companies to say that the product is organic (simply because the back of the product would have a list of science/chemical names) so it’s best that they go to the store and get some ingredients to do this themselves.

    Naturals would use either clays or organic soaps such as African Black Soap. Deep Conditioner would be a mix of Yogurt, eggs, oils, glycerin and anything in the pantry! They would then use the same if not similar ingredients as a leave in and follow up with a homemade oils and homemade butter as well.

    Products you will need:

    • Bentonite Clay /Rassoul Clay / Kaolin Clay or African Black Soap
    • Yogurt and/or Coconut Milk and/or Avocado and/or Glycerin and/or anything in your pantry!

    Other tools you will need:

    • Blender
    • Strainer
    • Containers
    • Fridge Storage

    Pros: All organic. Fully knowledge of what is actually in your product.

    : DIY heavy, requires a lot of prep time before and cleaning up afterwards.

    Ayurveda Routine

    With Henna the start of the show, this routine follows through plenty of powders that focus on the hair’s health, strengthening properties.

    Many naturals use this routine if they have stagnant growth and have seen really good results.

    Oil Prepoo, Shikaikai Mask as a cleanser, Henna Mask that needs to be prepared 4 hours before using (with any 3 to 5 powders to choose from). Sit with it for an hour and rinse and then continue with moisture routine with Aloe and seal with Infused Oil.

    Products You Will Need:

    • Shikaikai
    • Henna, Amla, Fenugreek , Indigo, Cassia etc
    • Aloe Gel or powder
    • Oil (preferably infused)

    Other Tools You Will Need:

    • Mixing Tools and bowls
    • Plastic gloves (henna leaves a stain)
    • Plastic cap
    • A whole outfit that can get dirty
    • Precious Time

    Pros: Also organic full of both cleansing, strengthening and moisturizing powders

    : DIY heavy and time-consuming. Best to use every 6 – 12 months to fortify strands.

    15 Step Wash Processes (usually after a long protective style)

    Prepoo, Keep in Twists, Detangle, Twists, Clarify, Twists, Condition, Twists, Deep Condition with 15 ingredients, LCOGS.

    This routine is just like the first but it’s for naturals that have the time and energy to invest in their hair.

    The prepooo process can be used to prevent the shampooing from stripping too much oil. Detangling for every step to keep the hair from matting and tangling back up and keeping the hair in twists.

    Ideal for naturals that carry out long term protective styles (braids for 2+ months)

    Products You Will Need:

    • Oil
    • Clarifying shampoos or Clays with Apple Cider Vinegar
    • Deep Penetrating Masks that allow the shaft and adding oils, butters, glycerin for max moisture.
    • Leave in with added ingredients.
    • Oils or grease for sealing long term.
    • Essential Oils
    • Ayurvedic powders

    Other Tools You Will Need:

    • Detangling tool of choice
    • Plastics for different masks
    • Heat Cap for long penetration

    Pros: Maximum moisture guaranteed. Full benefits of adding essential ingredients.

    Cons: Time consuming and DIY heavy


    It’s pretty clear that there is no one method that works for all naturals. We have different porosities, textures, densities and lifestyles so we need to do what can best feed our hair with the time that we have on our hands. So let me know which one are you?

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