Dear Beautiful Curly Coily Hairess,
I’m going to talk about a product that is ‘Au naturel’ and most useful in our everyday life and hair grooming, The COCONUT OIL. Now we all know is that coconut oil is good for you, Period, That’s undisputable…. but how so?
Well, apart from its exotic culinary uses, virgin Coconut oil is known to be good to your facial skin, body , it even helps with weight loss. Plus because of its high saturated fat content Coconut oil is slow to oxidize and, therefore resistant to rancidification, meaning it has a long shelf life of up to 2 years!
Virgin coconut oil is recognized as one of the best kept secrets responsible for the long healthy hair in Indian women #Fact!
Be rest assured that the benefits of this amazing oil is worth the effort put in making it.I have been on several escapades with this amazing oil, personally, and even though l says so, it’s no mean feat. Patience is key.
There are three known methods of extracting the oil; The Wet –milling method, Boiling method and Cold pressing Method. I‘ve tried all except the cold press (which is in fact meant for larger quantities), but prefer the wet milling process, any day anytime, because the oil practically comes out as is in the fruit, boiling kind of takes out that advantage, more so, wet milling is as close as you can get to cold pressing, which is why i recommend it.
Both methods (Wet milling /Cold pressing) ensure that minimal heat is used in production of that quality Coconut oil you need for your hair, face and body. .
To make your own Wet-milled Virgin coconut oil you will need:
1) At least 3 coconuts (to get anything reasonable from it)
2) A cheesecloth/ white handkerchief
3) Two neat bowls (one with a tight lead)
4) and a blender/ food processor for crushing.
5) A sterilized jar for storage
6) 1 Knife, 1 grater
How to do;
Step 1: Simply grate your coconuts (after taking it out from its shell), if you do not have a grater then you have to slice into small pieces (this takes more time though). When you have grated the meat share into 3parts measuring with your eyes , then toss the first into a blender or food processor adding a little water enough to help it move ( two or 3 twirls is enough) .. Do the same for remaining two parts.
Step 2) Pour out the contents as you blend into a neat bowl (it will look bit milky /watery ), when you are done, Take out your cheese cloth/handkerchief, Place it over the bowl with a lead and pour in the blended coconut ( again in small parts) hold the ends of the cloth together and squeeze the milky juice into the bowl , squeeze as hard as you can to get all the milky juice out , leave the empty shafts in another bowl ( if you like) , I usually throw mine in the bin.
For the purpose of demonstration I’ve randomly chosen photos from google.
When you are done, this is how it will look.
Keep in a cool or dark place for about 5 – 6 hours; you will notice that the water and the milk have separated in the bowl looking like the pics above.
Your coconut oil can be found at the top layer so don’t be discouraged, it is mixed with the curd , but not so easy to spot right now hence it has to go into the fridge for another 2/3 hours for solidification. This is what it will look like when it gets out.
Now pretty, scoop out the solidified juice (with a plastic spoon) into an air tight container/jar, leave beside a hot cooking pot or by the window in the sun (I usually do that). After a while you will see the clear distinction between the curds and oil. The oil settles beneath leaving the curds on top, scoop out the curds with your plastic spoon. There you have it, your coconut oil in pure virgin form sans heat.
The outcome should look somewhat like this…
The boiling method is basically the same, only difference is, when you have squeezed out the milk from the shaft, all that is left to do is pour the juice into a pot and boil at medium temperature, stirring constantly until it evaporates leaving only the curd, which you then need to pay attention to, cos as it dries on the fire the oil comes out… always leave to cool before pouring into a storage container.
Tops 5 ways to get the best out of your Coconut oil.
It could be used to cleanse our mouth first thing in the morning and last before bedtime, a process known as OIL PULLING, which helps to eliminate bacteria and strengthen gums and teeth.( just take a teaspoon each time and gaggle for 30 minutes).
It is highly recommended for Oil cleansing as well, which is another process of removing excess facial oil, and cleansing it from inside out, leaving for a clearer and even tone, and also as a facial scrub ( mixed with honey).
Coconut oil could also be used for prepping out hair for wash day, a term known as PREPOOING in the natural hair world.
It could also be used separately or mixed with other oils as oil treatment or a deep conditioner.
Whip some coconut oil with Shea butter and use as lotion every day for a clear skin, or use as Deodorant if you are looking to avoid chemicals.
Coconut oil is still being used by indigenous people in many areas of the world especially Asia, and has helped a lot of women folks care for their hair and even earn a living. Click on the link below to see how it’s made locally in Asia using the boiling method!
Till next time hairess…I hope you find the courage to try making your own virgin coconut oil, do let me know how it goes if you do. Cha cha!
Dear coily curly queen,
How are you and your gorgeous locks doing?, Sorry for my long absence, I have been extremely busy getting married, yes yours truly is now a mrs, and while it feels good to be a mrs somebody i may just be realising the resposiblities that come with it, which are enormous by the way , still struggling to come to terms with the new found role as ‘’Wifey’’, lol.
Anyways, It does feel like a new channel has been open for me, in a way that the african society recognises and likes to use to its own advantage for example, being a married woman in Nigeria gets you respect among the folks, you are automatically elevated to a new status overnight and people will address you different , its very amusing when your suddenly hear ‘Madam ’ from people who called your name directly without permission in the first place, lol, and I get the feeling that its going to be a very interesting ride, which we will be talking about as we go along on this journey.
Now down to the business of the day, we have just gone past the harmattan which is akin to winter in colder climates and are now in the raining season,or spring season if you like, am curious to know how you coped with your tresses during the hamarttan , did you find it easy or difficult to maintain? For me, the weather was so dry here in Abuja that I had a hard time keeping it( still no name yet) moisturised , I did find a way though after so many trials, in fact I discovered 3 methods that worked perfect depending on how often its uses, these methods ensured that my hair was constantly moisturised and did not break unessesarily , we discuss it shortly.
Hey naturalhairess, does your hair feel dry and limp? Does it tangle easily?, are you experiencing breakage or hair loss? Have you kept a weave or braids for long periods at a stretch? Any of these method of natural hair care, included in your regimen will help regain life and shine in your hair.
The Greenhouse Effect Method ( GHE) : This means applying natural oils or butter to hair and covering with a shower cap and a scarf before going to sleep or simply wearing both for a long period of time, This method aims to grow hair from the scalp directly by creating a sort of steamy, warm environment for your hair just like is done with plants! it aims to stimulate growth using the natural sebum produced by your scalp, It is reasoned that with the cap on for longer hrs than the usual deep conditioning time, the heat created will help increase blood circulation retains moisture, which will in turn prevent breakage or hair loss. How smart is that? Lol, sounds weird but studies have shown that it is quite effective at facilitating hair growth as well as moisture retention. Below is a video to practice with if you like.
Oil Rinse Method ORM: Involves coating your hair in a huge amount of oil( any type of oil will do) right after washing /shampooing , allowing it to sit for about 10 / 20 minutes before rinsing of with lukewarm water , and proceeding to condition as usual finally rinsing with cool water. Its is a most recommended treatment for dry hair, having used it myself on and off, on several occasions. It is also very effective in combating single strand knots.
Protective styling : Any style that will leave your hair ends well tucked in, moisturised protected from the natural elements and manipulation free for a long period of time is refered to as protective styling, it could be in form of twists, braids,buns or flat twists. Do take note that this doesn’t involve extension braids and weaves as they ultimately to do the opposite in practice.
The above two methods are totally different in application ancd will be effective in various conditions, If you are a homebody, a stay home mom, or someone that works from home the Greenhouse Effect will work perfect for you because it means you can keep your hair tied up for longer period, while the oil rince method will serve if you have little time on hands, work an 8-5 like me, and have a tight schedule.
As you know, in the natural hair world once a method works for you it becomes a keeper. My hubby would say “why change a winning team”?, there is no point reinventing the wheel if it works, its sounds cliché, I know, but there’s truth in it, these methods saw me through the most “drying periods” of my hair’s life and have now been included in my monthly regimen, I’ve tested and tried them that’s how I know they are effective,but hey , it doesn’t have to be harmattan or winter time for you to try them, our hair goes through different phrases at different times, its very important to keep track and know when to apply any of these methods, for example, hair that is just 3-4 inches long old is obviously easy to maintain and doesn’t need a protective style, its already low, and maintenance is all it requires is to be constantly moisturised and properly hydrated.
While a long haired natural who constantly battles with dry ends, tangling or fiery knots would need to oil rinse every now and often to prevent split ends and breakage. Its all about attentiveness dearest.
My next post will tackle caring for your hair in heat and humid weather which is what we are presently experiencing in this part of the world.
Till then, chacha curly, and keep being kind to that beautiful mane of yours.
Hello there coily curly queen,
What a pleasure to be able to talk with you again after such a long while. how are you and how are you treating that hair of yours? Have you been keeping track of its growth? you may not realise it but that hair is growing but if you do not document the process through pictures and monthly measurements/length checks you will never know for sure. i did a little documentation of my own as its been a while, find the pictures here..
The stages of growth for our hair are quite a number and we (naturals) have a name for each stage ; The TRANSITIONING Stage, the BIG CHOP AKA BC is when you chop of all your permed hair leaving about 1 or two inches of hair to begin the natural journey, this is followed by the Teeny Weeny Afro stage(TWA) with 5 / 7 inches of hair, there’s also the CHIN length,SHOULDER length, BRA-STRAP length, MEDIUM lenght , WAIST lenght and the list goes on, as you can see my hair has almost reached my chin now so you could say that l’am at the chin length stage. what stage are you at now and how are you taking care of it?
Its important to know what stage you are and styles that are best suited for each, otherwise you could easily get frustrated trying out a style, method or regimen that your hair length is not suited for or has gone passed. it happened to me a lot, I didn’t know that there was an awkward stage and did not understand why my ‘wash and go’s looked different, I often compared with other naturals who by the way were passed my stage, how their hair seemed to fall and felt I wasn’t doing something right, that was until I found out about the ‘awkward stage’: stage between a teeny weeny afro and chin length, this stage requires one to make use of hair accessories, its not a very beautiful stage per se, it requires a lot of creativity to it pull off! Here goes the different stages….
The Transitioner or Transitioning :This is the process of growing out ones natural hair along with the permed hair for a period of time, it could take from 1-8 months but I wouldn’t advise going beyond 8months because of the damage it causes to the new growth, not saying its impossible, one will have to be extra careful to maintain both textures Curlie, Hair styles for this stage should be directed at blending of the two textures while protecting the new growth, it could also be quite annoying.
Suggested styles for this stage include : Bantu knot outs, twists-outs and buns.
Photos of a Transitioner and her hair.
Big Chop; This is when a curlie chops of all her permed hair to start afresh with about zero to 2 inches of hair, very easy to maintain your hair at this level, only need to keep it clean and moisturised.
Teeny Weeny Afro: The teeny weeny Afro is a welcome stage, here Curlie has at least 3-5 inches of hair to play with, you may begin to do finger twists, twist-outs, braid-outs , etc, but keep in mind this stage is sort a shortlived and after comes the awkward stage but fret not, just go out and get those hair bands, flowers, scarves and any other type of accessories you can find at the store, these could go a long way to ease your stress believe me.
Suggested styles for this stage include: mini puffs twist-outs, bantu knot-outs ,braid-outs, wash n go’s , etc…
The chin and shoulder length stage : This basically means you can put your whole hair in a bun, its longer and can therefore accommodate more styles and manipulation such as : mini pompadours, huge puffs, chunky twist-outs, twist and braid outs, Wash n go at this stage is very tricky, you could get those annoying fiery knots and detangling could become a dreaded thing, however cheer up Curlie it just means your hair is growing!
The Medium or Bra strap length: This is also known as the third, where your hair must have grown in length and volume, it can do what ever you want it to, but also has its disadvantages such as longer wash days and detangling hours, but its so worth it you may forget so l heard, lol.
The longer our hair is the more time and effort is needed to wash, detangle, and style it so be prepared Curlie Queen, I’m not considering the cost because that is so relative, I personally advocate 90% use of natural/home made product for washing as well conditioning.
In a nutshell Queen, its up to you to do your research, experiment and find out what works best for you and your hair at each stage of its growth rather than sit and whine about how its not acting like hers or hers, don’t forget your hair only works best for you.
Below is a picture I found at Natural hair rules page, showing the different stages;
Till my next post, which hopefully would not be too long from now, Have a great time with your hair this week!