31 October, 2011

Hair History, Thoughts & Tutorial

So, to start out & get up close & personal, I'm just going to put this out here & take your bad opinion on it I don't wash my hair every day. Or every other day or even every 3rd day. That might not sound like love to you but hold on. Now, if I've been working in unrelenting sun & am absolutely soaked, then yes, I'll wash it, but I do it the old-timey way & generally wash it on Sat. so as to be fresh for church. Am I backwards? A hillbilly? I might be, but let me also say my hair has never been as healthy & less split on the ends than right now. Let me take a moment up front to clear my mother of this habit; if you know her then you'll know that she couldn't raise me this way. :)

A conversation I heard between my grandma & her friend Sister Fletcher (Pentecostal sister, not catholic. "Brother" & "Sister" replaced all of the misters & missus' at the church I grew up in.) stuck w/ me, marveling that all the young girls of today washed their hair every day. When grandma grew up, it was once a week, & they washed it w/ Tide, at that. Why did daily hair washing come about? I suspect advertising & photography in the glossy magazines & then television.

The Hegelian Dialectic was at work, changing the meaning of words. Oily & dirty at one time were not synonymous but Herbal Essences can't make money off of you if you're satisfied w/ your looks. Check out this article I found on keeping the hair pretty from 100 years ago. It urges in the strongest possible lady like terms of the times to not wash your hair oftener than every 3 weeks. In fact just do a google search of hair washing habits 100 years ago, it's just a completely opposite standard today.

For my part I've had oily hair all of my life I was never made to feel that this was a good thing. Women of color can go weeks w/out hair washing & actually buy oils to put in their hair & they look great; sadly, from what I've read on other forums, a lot of them get looks & comments on the negative side when they go natural. Let a white person skip a hair wash & they're a dirty hippie. 12 hours w/out a wash for me & my hair would be begin to try to replace it's sebum. I now get the same amount of oiliness 4 days w/out a wash. And after that it's just starting.

It took a year (for me, I've read of some people being adjusted in as little as a month) to re-calibrate my sebum production by simply not washing it & the ol' 100 strokes w/ a boar bristle brush trick. No, it doesn't make your hair grow but it was at one time acknowledged as very beneficial to distribute the oils from your scalp down to the tips of your hair. Your hair needs the oil to protect itself. If it got dirty you could rinse the dirt off of the hair & the dirt would slide right off of the oil protected strands.

A headcovering while working also serves to keep hair clean. There is nothing but dirt here & we hope to make it our living. Now, if I'm in the sun, a straw hat hangs on the door to clap on on my way out, when I'm working in the shade I prefer a snood. A snood is eminently practical, especially w/ dirt flying from root cellar construction, or mucking the goat shed or getting the muck into the garden. Panicked chickens can't get their claws tangled. Miranda throwing flour on my head when I'm baking & she's at the counter & I'm cleaning one of her messes off of the floor all stays out of my hair. I've been very happy w/ Devorah's, her wide headbands too.

Since I do cover & wash occasionally, I am always on the look out for a new hairstyle because I do like to play w/ hair. I'm the person who was always trying to figure out how to put in Victory rolls & Marcel curves before styling products (rats, pins & sugar water) came about. This one I found is called Amish Braids, so you know it's good for wearing a headcovering. It's also very comfortable to sleep in. I had a 5 year old guest/model & I think her hair had not been washed in 2 days, it held really well.

Here's the halfway point, you can see all 3 sections.

Braid the top third.

Divide the middle section into 2 strands leaving the top braid to act as the middle strand.
It's a thicker more knobbly braid now.
And repeat for the last bit using the knobbly braid for the middle strand. You should have 2 braidzillas.
Now the tuck; there is a little gap that ought to be big enough for you to get 2 fingers under. Hook your fingers under & pass the tail of the braid through pulling it tight.

Like so.
And repeat for the other side. Much longer hair can be passed through the top gaps making another X. Maybe you can make another pass w/ super long hair.
Now cover it & get to work! This style is comfortable to sleep in (for me) & I can keep it up for about 3 days before I have to tighten it. I generally don't wear it all week as I like to give my hair a rest & a brush but if it's a busy time I'll tighten it for another day or so. And by tighten I just mean re braid the tails to pick back up the wispies.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I love the Amish braids hair style- it's so cute. :) Did it take very long to do? I found the information on hair washing very interesting. I am a fraidy cat and have to baby step everything. I am going to try to go conditioner only with my hair. If it works, then I'll do it with my dd that has very dry and thirsty hair.

Thanks for sharing.