After being natural for almost 10 years (I can’t believe it’s been that long!) reading dozens of blog posts, and spending countless hours watching YouTube videos, I finally tried it….
……Bentonite clay! Bentonite clay has been a consistent favorite for many naturals since I first went natural and I’m sure it was popular long before that. I’m usually the last to hop on the bandwagon when it comes to something that’s new to me even if many people seem to love it. I’m all about educating myself, so I like to know the products’ origin, how it benefits the hair, price and availability. I also like to see how the product performs on naturals with different curl patterns. In my opinion, that’s one of the best ways to determine product quality. So since I don’t want to bore you with research, I’ll just give you a quick rundown of what Bentonite clay is and why I decided to finally give it a go!
Bentonite clay is deemed the world’s most powerful facial due to its deep pore cleansing capabilities since it is made from 100% natural calcium clay. So no added silicones or synthetic ingredients. Even though it is intended to use on the skin to remove impurities, it is also highly effective at cleansing the hair.
Clay cleanses the hair in three ways:
- Antibacterial properties
- Removes toxins and impurities
- Removes oils
Since I can be a little (ok…a lot) heavy handed when it comes to applying hair products, a non-stripping, deep cleansing is usually in order every about once per month to remove product build up and excess oil. If you notice flakes in your hair or if your hair is not behaving typically, it may be a good idea to give your locs some love with a nice deep cleaning. Spring cleaning, anyone?
Clay Mask Recipe:
1) 3 tbsp of oil. I used grapeseed. You can use any oil you have on hand
2) 1 tbsp of molasses. You can use honey as well
3) ¾ cup Aloe Vera Juice
4) ½ cup of clay
Feel free to adjust the measurements based on the length and thickness of your hair.
To mix the mask, you will need a non-metal bowl and a non-metal spoon to avoid a chemical reaction between the clay and metal.
To apply the clay mixture, I first created my standard six sections of hair and applied the mixture from roots to tips; including the scalp. Healthy hair begins at the scalp. Product build up on the scalp, it can stunt hair growth.
I left the treatment in for 30 minutes and rinsed each section thoroughly until the water ran clear. My hair felt cleansed, but also a little hard/stiff so I followed up with a deep conditioning treatment, with heat. To my deep conditioner, I added half of a 1/4 cup of molasses. You can read this post to see why I am loving molasses in my deep conditioner these days!
I left the deep conditioner in for about an hour and 15 minutes. While rising out my deep conditioner, I noticed my hair was smooth, shiny and detangled easier than normal (and who doesn’t want that?). My curls were also elongated.
I really enjoyed using the clay and I will definitely add it to my regimen more often when my hair needs a good cleansing.
Have you tried a clay before? What was your experience?