Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Repair: Dealing with decades of hair-shame

Like most people in the western hemisphere (and probably the eastern part too) I grew up with certain complexes and shames. In between my weight issues and my untamed hair, school was pretty unpleasant and I was an easy target for other kids (who dealt with their their own complex by bullying others). Not to mention, my four-eyed existence since I was 7 and adding insult to injury, braces when I was 9. But nothing was worst, than the funk I've always had on top of my hair.

My hair was brown with some natural highlights. Now I really couldn't tell what color it was... I can only remember, and it will probably never grow back to it's natural hue. It's something I have accepted, since I do not want to shave my entire head for it to come back in it's original tones. It is dry, frizzy, sort of curly but with undefined curls, the complete opposite of shiny and silky. That is what I have had to deal with, since I remembered caring about my appearance.

I've had every possible thing you could imagine on top of my skull. I've had it long, super short, a chelsea cut with a #2 comb, 3 different mohawks (one with leopard print on it's sides) and every single color known to the universe, from brown to pink to blue to blonde to orange and beyond.  I've had several hair procedures and probably every product you can imagine. I first dyed my hair when I was 14, I believe. After that, I've never stopped. By now, my hair has gone through hell and back, yet it still remains on my head.

By now, I've concluded it loves the torture, masochist hair strands... filthy kinky un-curly curls. So, 10 years after the first massive attack to my hair, I'm trying to make peace with it, yet again. As part of my new lifestyle, I took all of my personal care and beauty products and placed them in a bag... the amount of stuff I relied on to feel pretty was unacceptable and after knowing all of the horrible things they contain, I will not go back. I'd rather have ugly hair than be bald due to cancer ( which is treated with chemo therapy, where loosing hair is one of the main side effects), brought up by Pthalates and Parabens ( things our products have that make us sick).

Most products that are sold on a the wide market have some kind of ¨fragrance¨ or ¨perfume¨, even if they don't necessarily need it (same thing can be said of color dyes, but that is another entire blog entry in the future). These manufactured smells contain Pthalates, or Pthalic acid, which are mainly used as plasticizers, and are pretty much everywhere. While, Parabens, are used as preservatives and can be found in mostly every beauty and personal care product, as well as pharmaceuticals.But, what is the problem with this?

Turns out, pthalates and parabens are both know to be endocrine disruptors. This means they mess up the way your entire endocrine system is supposed to work and sends your body on a chaotic hormone ride. Disrupting hormones cause many, many things to a body, from growing hairs were they are not wanted, to growing tumors were they are not wanted. Parabens are also known to be carcinogenic and recent studies have found that in many cases, parabens are associated with breast cancer.

So after deciding to go on a chemical detox, I recently googled some nice hair repair masks. I decided to start nurturing my hair with the nutrients and oils it needs, since it's been deprived of them because of the bad things I was putting on my hair to make it look "pretty", like shampoo, "conditioners", gels, smoothing cremes, moose, hair spray and more.  Right now, I'm still working on the detox part. My hair seems to have withdrawal symptoms, and has been pretty hard to tame the last couple of months. But I know it will be back to healthy in no time. Last week I used this mask I now share with you, and is seems that with patience and a little natural care, my hair will be back in route to being kinda sort-of nice (since it's never really been THAT nice).

Natural Hair Repair Mask  
(It's also a fun activity to do in a group!)

-Egg Yolks- 1
-Olive Oil - to ¨taste¨
-Jojoba Oil - to ¨taste¨ (this oil is kind of expensive, so control yourself)
-Honey (1 spoon)

Mix together. It will look a pretty bright yellow! If you need more, just mix more, I had to do 3 yolks since my hair is very thick. Apply to hair, cover with shower cap or shopping bag and leave for 30 minutes or more. Rinse.

I promise it will bring back some shine into your hair, even if it used to look like dried up hay from a dirty stable, like mine did.  I will try other masks and conditioners as I go along my chemical rehab. I'll keep you posted.


  1. I looooved this entry!!! I completely understand how you feel about your hair. I have struggled with mine since I was a kid myself and finally last June I did something I never thought I would: I asked somebody to cut it all. Granted... now I look like a poodle sometimes, but I'm determined not to relax, nor blow dry, nor hot iron, nor dye, nor "wash and condition" the regular way anymore. I will tame it as best as I can with products that are made of essential oils and natural things and wear it the way it is. Thanks for the recipe.I will definitely try it!

    1. Thanks for reading! :D Yes try it! It helped for some shine and softness. I will be trying some new stuff soon, I'll keep you posted! :)