Friday, July 2, 2010


The Danger of Lifted Cuticles or Unconditioned Hair

Lifted cuticles not only make the individual strands weak and dull looking, they also make the cuticles counterproductive. The purpose of cuticles is to protect the inner part of the hair stand. Lifted cuticles become like little sharp knives that then can wreak havoc or destroy other hairs. If you try to comb out or detangle hair with lifted cuticles, two kinds of events may possibly occur.

The first event is that you can inadvertently flick off or pop off one or many of those precious and important cuticles. You can literally strip the cuticles from your hair strand. Once you strip away the cuticles from the hair strand, your hair has become damaged and weakened permanently.

The second event that can happen is that these little lifted cuticles can cut and saw away at other hairs. Hairs with lifted cuticles can damage the other hair strands on your head. Poor care, and damaged unconditioned hair can create an environment that may inflict additional damage upon your head of hair.

Protein to the Rescue

Most protein products are formulated to gravitate to the hair. The molecules within protein products tend to be large and to be positively charged. Our hair has a slight negative charge. Hair rubbing against hair, as in the case of the lifted cuticles can cause physical damage as in the cutting of one hair by another. It also has some electrical impacts. Positive energy is attracted to negative energy. Therefore, the positively charged protein molecules in a protein hair product gravitate to the negatively charged hair.

These positively charged molecules are in a solution, or in a liquid form that contains resins. A resin is something that is placed in a product to help it bind to another ingredient or to the hair directly. The binding is necessary for the protein molecules so that they can stick to the hair.

I prefer to use a protein product with dry heat, as opposed to steam heat. This drying allows or helps the resin and the protein molecules to bind to the hair. Why is this important?

This is important because the protein molecules fill in the spots on the hair strand that are missing cuticles and that are damaged areas. Protein products cannot permanently repair hair. They temporarily “repair” hair and fill in missing pieces of a strand. They help to give the impression of lowered cuticles on the hair strand by filling in for missing cuticles. This makes the hair appear shinier or have more sheen because the hair strand has what appears to be a healthy cuticle layer that better captures and reflects light. Cuticles are important for shine and sheen.


Has A Negative Charge (-)


Has a Positive Charge (+)

Try to use protein conditioners on clean hair that has been washed. This will allow the protein to have the greatest access to the spaces and places on the hair strand that need protein the most. Types of protein ingredients to look for in products are silk, collagen, and keratin. Non animal or plant or vegetable based types of protein are wheat, pea and soy based proteins.






The Magic of Moisture

Although I do not believe in a magic product that works well on every single head of hair, I do believe that moisture is magical for EVERY head of hair! Moisture is a water based product. Moisture needs to be used along with protein based products. Moisture is not necessarily grease or oil. Oil can be mixed with water to form a component within a moisture based product.

Try to find a moisture based product that does not contain any of the ingredients listed above found in protein conditioners or products, such as collagen, or soy and etc. Always try to use a moisture based product or conditioner after you use a protein conditioner. Water, panthenol and natural oil are great ingredients to look for in a moisture based product. You can add these ingredients to enhance your store bought conditioner. Remember to only add the ingredients to what you are going to use that day. Adding a liquid to a store bought conditioner that will sit for days may destabilize or contaminate your product.

Unlike protein products that function to bind to the hair, moisture based products are made to penetrate the hair. To help these moisture based products work at an optimum level on your hair, you may want to use them with steam or wet heat. Remember, protein based products tend to work better with dry heat. Moisture based products tend to work better with moist or wet heat. Wet heat is simply another way to refer to steamed heat.

Moisture based products help the hair to be soft, pliable and flexible. Softened cuticles and hair strands tend to bend and move as opposed to break away from the hair strand. Unfortunately, there is no magic ratio for protein and moisture. Each head of hair is different, every situation is different. You really must perform a bit of trial and error to find your protein moisture balance for your head of hair.

Ladies, Chicoro is on the ball....thanks to her I am really beginning to understand my hair and why certain things that I was doing at one time ....just wasn't coming together.   Annnnd, I finally....finally have a understanding of how to properly moisture my hair...and to keep it moisturized ...why certain products, just wasn't keeping my hair moisturized.  Discovery on that in future post......stay tuned.



CallaLily said...

Hi Zainab1 - another wonderful post. I enjoyed reading it!

zainab1 said...

@Callalily...So, glad you've enjoyed reading it! Thanks so much Callalily, for stopping by. Take care and have a great weekend!

ElectrikSunset said...

this is great information! Thank you! Are you coming to the hair meet up this weekend? Hope to see you there!

zainab1 said...

@ ElectrikSunset...Thanks! I wont be able to make this one , but hopefully I can make it if there is ever another one. But, if you attend have fun !! thanks for stopping by and take care.

Tiffany said...

omm!! i'm researching cuticles for a post and found your blog. I've seen you comment on my lil bloggety blog before. hello!!! so happy to have found u. you got madd knowledge over here.

zainab1 said...

@ Tiffany, yes !!!, I know you ( lol) I follow your blog( a day in the life of a curly girl) great blog!

So, glad you've found AuNaturale, welcome!!!! , thanks for stopping by visit often.
Take care.