Caring for Afro and curly hair in lockdown


Hands up if your beauty routine is feeling the lockdown? We hear you loud and clear (albeit from a safe distance;-)). From grown out roots to overgrown nails, we have been there - we are still there! Post lockdown, you can be sure that we will be running as fast as we can back into the arms of our fave stylist. Till then, here are my tips for caring for your afro & curly hair during this time. 


Tuck your hair away

During times of anxiety, some of us may find ourselves subconsciously adopting habits such as pulling and playing with our hair which can weaken and create tension on the hair. If your hair tends to be out and you can, try keeping your hair in a simple style that limits your ability to play with it.

For instance, you could put your hair in cornrows or twist outs. However, if plaiting is not your forte a slick back bun (but remember not too tight to avoid hairline tension) or ponytail will do. Do this at the beginning of your week and keep it in until wash day. For those with shorter curls opt for keeping hair wrapped in your favourite silk scarf or headwrap. Knots UK do a great array of options for you.


Keep up the hair routine

It can be so tempting not to wash your hair. I recommend continuing with your wash day routine (once a week). This is such an important step for our hair maintenance particularly those with a tighter curl pattern. The Boucleme Scalp Exfoliating Shampoo is a great option for anyone looking to get rid of product build up (usually caused by layering of thick creams and oils). It uses hydrogenated castor beads to softly exfoliate the scalp, whilst stimulating hair follicles for healthy growth. The Holy Curls Shampoo is a super moisturising cleanser with hydrating active ingredients such as baobab oil, coconut oil, cupuaçu butter and yucca plant and willow bark extract. Superb for anyone struggling with very thirsty hair. 


Do not attempt a chemical treatment at home

If your hair is dyed or relaxed, I strongly advise against attempting to lighten it at home if you’re not use to doing it. I know this is not idea but the potential damage caused can take months to undo. Best to embrace the new growth until you can safely have it retouched by a salon professional. 


Never stray from your conditioner

Deep conditioning is perfect for keeping the dryness at bay but also preventing damage. If you are in the mood for some major self care TLC, opt for Flora and Curl Clay Wash which combines clarifying (deep scalp cleanse) and conditioning clay (rhassoul clay). Dizziak Deep Conditioner is ultra nourishing with quinoa protein which helps with strengthening the hair. Turbo charge the performance of your fave deep conditioner with the Hot Head Deep Conditioning Heat Cap

Join us for our bi-weekly Deep Conditioning Parties on Instagram, where we play our fave tunes, dance and deep condition together. 


Be sure to keep your hair hydrated

This is a rule of thumb for me on a daily basis as afro hair textures have a tendency to be dry so it is essential to moisturise often. A moisturising spray such as the Flora & Curl Floral Hydration Mist is a great and simple form of thirst relief. Alternatively, mixing some water, olive oil and peppermint oil (if you have it) in a water bottle is a great DIY option. Do this every morning (or when your hair needs it). Following the LOC Method (i.e. apply Liquid/Oil/Cream) is a great way for ensuring that your hair is moisturised for longer. The Flower Garden Butter and Hic&Nunk Nourishing Balm works particularly well for sealing in the moisture.


Enjoy your hair

Give yourself a head massage. Not only is it calming but it also helps stimulates blood circulation and ultimately hair growth. Our hair texture tends to knot very easily during sleep and this is exacerbated by traditional cotton pillowcases, which causes friction and breakage. A silk pillowcase will do all the hard work whilst you sleep, leaving your hair plus skin super soft. 


Do stay safe and we will see you on the salon queue:) x

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Winnie Awa, founder of Antidote Street