When we decided to embark on our natural-nappy hair journey, we knew that there would be lots of tools to stock up on to assist with taming our new form of hair.
From watching endless YouTube tutorials, through reading countless natural hair blogs, we were able to gather ideas on not only the best products to apply, but also the best supplies to use for curly-nappy hair. Over the years since becoming fully natural, we have purchased several hair tools with the intent of making our natural hair journey easy, sustainable, and exciting. Here is the list of some of our most treasured hair tools and accessories that we’ve found to be highly useful.
Plastic Spray Bottle
What is the one thing that curls cannot get enough of? The answer is: Hydration! And that’s why having a spray water bottle is an absolute hair saver. Whenever products require the hair to be damp to apply or if the curls are just drained and need to be quenched, the spray bottle becomes a convenient best tool. We keep our spray bottles filled with water and/or conditioner and always within reach.
An Afro puff , whether high, big or small, is an easily achievable and go-to style when you have large elastic headbands on hand. For us, these work to gather up our hair until we have achieved the puff size we desire. Or they can be used for ponytails. The no damage large headbands can be purchased at Target and other retailers, but we have also discovered similar products that offer adjustable elements like Puff Cuffs, and Adjustdabands also work great to give us the puff style we want.
Hair clamps are very useful for keeping sections of hair divided especially when detangling, styling or when trying to concentrate hair products on certain sections. We love using our hair clamps to ensure strands remain in their places and a bonus is that they do not pull the hair out.
Detangling Combs and Brushes
Detangling is part of every natural/nappy girl’s hair routine and so having the right detangling tools is a must! While one of us prefers to use a detangling wide tooth comb by Conair, the other prefers to use the popular Denman detangling brush. We both have gotten hip to using the ez style detangling brush, but the most important thing is that these tools do work well for us when its time to detangle our knotty strands.
All curly strands need oil for sheen and strength and we have found that the best way to apply oil to both the hair and scalp is through an applicator bottle. Many hair oils now include their own applicator tops, but this type of bottle can also be used to apply shampoos, DIY substances, and other products that work to stimulate the roots.
This nifty tool can probably be mistaken for a kitchen gadget of some sort, but it is actually used to massage the scalp. When we just want to let our hair down, and caress our roots, we grab our scalp massager. Just position this over your head, push down, and allow the bead tips to spread across to massage the scalp. It provides such a relaxing feeling and its much soothing for itchy scalp. We’ve found that the steel branches do not get tangled into our naps, but we do recommend using it on dry hair. This tool has become one of our favorites.
Shampoo Brush and Massager
The shampoo brush can also double as a scalp massager, but we mainly use it for the purpose of lifting dirt and exfoliating our scalp while washing our hair. The bristles also help to promote hair growth by increasing blood flow to the scalp, so we hardly ever wash our hair without this brush. We must note however that the shampoo brush can barely be used as a detangler.
Since hair tends to shed and clump when washing, it is imperative to cover the shower or sink drainage with a hair stopper to prevent clogging. Thick and curly strands can easily stop up a drainage, so we are always sure to use our hair stopper on wash days.
T-Shirt Hair Towel
One thing that we learned early on is that using a regular towel for drying natural hair can lead to breakage as the fibers cause friction between the hair and towel. As an alternative many naturalistas opt to use a t-shirt instead for it’s much softer, less abrasive fabric, yet proven ability to soak up water. This t-shirt towel wrap as shown in the picture is so easy to wrap over freshly washed hair. We like that it does not over-dry our tresses, and keeps our strands intact.
Silk or Satin Bonnet or Scarf
All naturalistas will agree that it is very important to wrap your hair at night with something silk or satin. Silk/Satin scarves or bonnets help to reduce friction against the hair and the pillow, thus reducing frizz and keeping certain styles in place. But most of all the non-absorbing quality of these materials help to hold in the hair’s natural oils and moisture. We never go to bed without our silk or satin.
Afro Hair Pic
How do you keep your Afro nice and fluffy or your curls looking voluminous?… with a hair pick of course! We use our picks to provide lift to our twist-out hairstyles or to elongate our curls. The pick is also widely used to add shape to Afros.
Backless Ponytail Hat
When your mane is just too thick to wear a regular baseball cap, then it’s time to get yourself a backless ponytail cap. This hat comes in handy when you’re having a lazy hair day, or if you just need to keep the sun or your hair out of your face. You can also wear it to add a super cute look to many styles which is also why we chose to add it as one of our favorite hair accessories. Purchase one of these on Amazon.
Ceramic Hot Air Brush
On wash days when we are preparing our hair for a straighter style, our Maven Ceramic Hot Air Brush becomes a handy tool. Not only does this air brush dry the hair rather quickly, but it also glides smoothly through our curly strands (given that we have detangled first). The ceramic technology is beneficial for reducing frizz and ensuring heat is distributed evenly to eliminate heat damage. A follow-up with our ceramic straightening brush (not pictured) does provide a more sleek strait look.
Conditioning Thermal Cap
Heat is not always bad for the hair! This is especially true when it comes to deep conditioning and it is the reason why we always use a conditioning thermal/heat cap when it comes to this step of the wash day process. Wearing the conditioning heat cap helps to open the hair cuticles so that the conditioning product can penetrate deep into the roots allowing the roots to absorb all of the conditioner’s nutrients. We love our microwavable heat cap for instant and longer lasting heat. But the self-heating conditioning cap which traps the body’s heat inside to condition the hair, is a less expensive great alternative.
Since ancient times, head wraps have always been worn by women of color to adorn the head. Through the centuries wearing a head wrap has taken on many meanings, but today they represent a symbol of pride, culture and beauty. Head wraps come in many designs and forms and can have many functionalities. From self-tying head wraps to pre-assembled designs (as pictured), this accessory has become a must have in our hair arsenal. They are convenient to wear for unkempt hair days, or to add a fashionable touch to any look. Regardless the reason of wearing a head wrap, these are sure to add distinction and style to your curly/nappy crown.
There are so many other accessories and tools that we use to assist with keeping our hair healthy, stylish and maintained, but those listed above are the ones we consider our absolute must haves, and the ones we highly recommend placing in your hair supply box. Comment to let us know what are some of your favorite hair tools and/or accessories?