There are several things that you can do to combat dull looking hair. In general, curly/kinky hair doesn’t appear to be as shiny as straight hair, due to the fact that its hair cuticles are lifted and not flat like straight hair cuticles. Lifted cuticles tend to absorb light rather than reflect it like flat cuticles do – giving the hair a less shiny appearance.
Lack of moisture is a big contributor of dull-looking hair. Several natural hair wearers make the mistake of pilling on oils and pomades as a means to moisturize their hair. However these things, especially if they are not essential oils, actually coat the hair cuticle, and cause product build-up.
Product build-up results in dull-looking hair. Apple Cider Vinegar rinses -ACV rinses – after or before washing works as a clarifyer and can add shine to your dull curls. Mix 1 capful or 1 tablespoon of ACV to 1 cup of water and pour the mixture through you hair, before or after washing.
As an after wash leave-in rinse, ACV rinses should be done no more than twice a month, because ACV will dry out your hair/scalp. But, if more treatments are necessary, be sure to add a little olive oil, castor oil etc… to your mixture. Also using more water-based products will help prevent product build-up. All in all, natural hair should be ‘moisturized’ with water and oils, and pomades should be used after to seal in the moisture.
Of course, staying away from high heat appliances, will also help with dull looking hair. For those who live in hot climates, make sure that you use products that contain sunscreen. Shea Butter, Sesame Oil, Exta Virgin Olive Oil, Virgin Coconut Oil and Hemp Seed Oil are natural alternatives that have UV protection. Also make sure you cover your hair with silk/satin lined scarves or hats if you are going to be outside for long periods of time.
Following the above tips, along with a healthy balanced diet of dark green veggies, protein, fish, beans and nuts, will bring shine to your dull looking hair and aid in its overall health.