Anything that happened pre-pandemic can feel decades away, but anyone who was dialed into the beauty space around 2018 may remember the explosion of Korean skin care products and the 10-step Korean skincare regimen. The 10 steps are said to be rooted in ancient tradition and include washing, exfoliating, moisturizing and several other steps and products to nourish and pamper your skin. The popularity of this system, largely stemmed from two things: the introduction to new types of skin care products and a comprehensive and precise routine.
Well, hair care is no different. Sure, we all have a sister, cousin or friend who has amazingly thick, long and healthy hair without much effort on her part. But for most of us, achieving our best hair takes work. Ethnic hair, especially, requires precision (in what you use and how you use it) and consistency in order to thrive.
The MMARA 7 Steps to Healthy Hair Care were developed for this exact reason. So many of us focus on the products we use, but not how we use them. Not paying attention to our routine can be the difference between inches of growth, the thickness of your ponytail, or the bounce of your curl or coil. Not all steps happen everyday, but ensuring you are doing the right steps regularly can make all the difference. After all, you cannot make up for weeks of neglect with one 6-hour wash day.
Step 1: SCALP CARE – Your hair’s health starts on the inside so your routine must start with your cleansing and caring for your scalp. Weekly scrubs and massages can help with blood flow and circulation to your hair follicles.
Step 2: CLEANSING – Shampooing your hair/scalp is necessary, but can be tricky. Focus your efforts and product on your scalp to ensure you don’t strip your hair off too many of its natural oils.
Step 3: CONDITIONING – Conditioning is the bedrock of your hair’s moisture. Everyone is different, but applying a deep conditioner at least monthly (but can be as frequently as weekly) will help ensure your hydrating your hair from the inside out.
Step 4 – STRENGTHENING – We’re talking protein here. Hair is made up of 95% keratin. Unfortunately, environmental factors, health factors and hair care techniques can all damage the integrity of the hair. So it’s important to fortify our hair with protein treatments. Frequency is highly individualized and you’ll need to go through some trial and error to find the best cadence for you.
Step 5: MOISTURIZING – Keeping your hair hydrated between wash days is key to reducing breakage for most women. Water-based moisturizers applied daily or several times throughout the week can help retain shine and keep hair soft, supple and manageable.
Step 6: TREATMENTS – Treatments such as hair masks, serums and oils are all highly dependent on your hair care needs and goals. In some cases they are used to course correct when you see damage and in others cases they are used to support and maintain your hair’s health. How often you use them and what you use are entirely up to you.
Step 7: STYLING – Physical damage is one of the main ways hair damage occurs. That’s why it is incredibly important to monitor and modify what products and techniques we are using while styling. Styling products can provide an extra layer of protection against heat and environmental damage, but ultimately it’s the technique that will help or hurt here.
Hair care is not just about what you do to your hair. You cannot separate your hair’s health from your general health and wellness. So make sure you are taking care of your sleep, nutrition, hydration and stress levels.
Not sure what products you should be using? Take the MMARA hair quiz for recommendations on what products and ingredients will work best for your hair type.