So I don’t cook. Like, at all.
Still, I don’t let my lack of skill or talent keep me from being a Wizard in the kitchen. If you should happen past my kitchen window on a lonely Saturday night, maybe when Dusty’s out of town, you’ll see me there, bent over a simmering pot, as I craft concoctions, prepare potions and mix magic elixirs…
…for my hair.
It’s true. I can barely prepare myself a square meal and have zero interest to learn. But I have undying enthusiasm for mixing ingredients in a bowl and mashing the contents into my hair in the quest for softer, fluffier, shinier, bouncier locks. Olive oil? Check. Honey? Check. Avocado-and-banana mush? Double check.
So. For your brewing, mixing and mashing pleasure, I offer you five of my favorite hair recipes and treatments. The ingredients for all (well, most) of these can be found in your kitchen. Also, keep an eye on me the next time I’m at your house, lest I sneak into your kitchen, surreptitiously raid your pantry and dump the contents on my head.
1. Oil Treatments.
Ok, so you probably saw this one coming. After all, my love of coconut oil has been well documented. And when it comes to how-tos for using coconut oil to have the best hair of your life, I’m still a fan of this one by my pal Amelia. But did you know that you can also use Extra Virgin Olive Oil for pre-walk-out-the-door touch-ups? Rub a little (A VERY LITTLE) in your hands and lightly brush your hands over the top layer of your hair to moisturize and tame frizzies. I will also rub a little EVOO into the ends of my hair to smooth and prevent split ends. Read here for Olive Oil masks and more ways EVOO can help your hair.
Here I am with coconut oil in my hair and a face mask on my face. Because dignity is for suckers.
2. Lavender refreshing spray.
I’m cheating with this one, because this receipe uses lavender essential oil rather than fresh lavender, and essential oils aren’t really a kitchen thing. But whatever. My blog, my rules! Lavender refreshing spray is awesome for those of us with curly or wavy hair. On days when I don’t want to wash or rinse my hair, I spray it all over with lavender refreshing spray, rub in a teeeeeeensy bit of Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie, and I’m out. It takes less than three minutes. Lavender will deodorize and refresh your hair and scalp. AND THAT’S NOT ALL. You can spray this stuff on bed linen, on clothes, and gently on your hair and face whenever you need a pick-me-up. I found this recipe for “Lavender-It-With-Love-Spray” in Lorraine Massey’s book, Curly Girl: The Handbook (she actually gives TONS of natural hair recipes, so check it out).
You will need: 2 quarts water, 5 drops pure (not synthetic!) lavender essential oil.
1. Fill a large pot with the water.
2. Cover the pot, bring the water to a boil on high heat, then turn the heat down to low and simmer for one hour to get rid of impurities (Check occasionally to make sure the water isn’t boiling away). (When I’m preparing my spray, I only boil the water for 10 minutes. Seems to work just fine–Phina)
3. Remove the water from the heat, add the lavender oil, stir to blend, and replace the lid.
4. Let the lavender water steep until cool, then poor it into spray bottles.
5. Store extra lavender spray in a cool place.
3. Beer hair!
I hate beer. I think it tastes gross and it makes me feel bloated and heavy. But beer is super good for shiny, bouncy hair! There is a lot of enthusiasm for beer shampoo, but I personally prefer ye olde beer rinse. Here’s what I do: Take some beer (I just use whatever is handy) and leave it out for a day or two. You want your beer to be flat and room temperature (like the Brits drink it! ZING!). Wash and condition as normal. In the shower, slowly and carefully pour the beer over your entire head, making sure it hits all your hair. You may have to flip your hair upside down to get the underside. Leave it be for about two minutes. Then, and this is the hard part, turn the shower to cold and rinse it out. I’m a giant baby when it comes to taking cold showers, so I will actually get out of the shower, wrap my body in a warm towel and just duck my head into the cold water to rinse it out. Shiny, bouncy hair without the threat of hypothermia!
My beer hair brings all the boys to the yard.
4. A touch of honey.
Honey is good for damaged, dry hair because it is a natural humectant (meaning it holds onto water). Read this article for more information on why honey rocks. First off a rule–DO NOT APPLY HONEY TO YOUR HAIR ON ITS OWN. It will create a sticky, awful mess. But every month or so, a touch of honey added to your conditioner will give you smooth, soft hair. Work it in from roots to tips on wet hair after shampooing, and let it sit for about five minutes. Rinse off using (gulp) cold water. You can even try adding honey to your oil treatment, as this blogger did. (I’ve never tried a honey/oil combo, but it’s on the agenda for my next at-home spa day)!
5. Apple Cider Vinegar me, please!
I’ve written before on why it’s awesome to drink ACV, but it’s also great to pour it on your head. Apple Cider Vinegar is awesome at removing product buildup and adding smoothness and shine! For a simple hair rinse, just mix one part ACV and one part water. Carefully pour over your head as you would with a beer rinse. Let it set a few minutes before rinsing in cold water. I like to ACV rinse after shampooing but before conditioning–although others swear that an ACV rinse makes conditioner not necessary. ACV also makes a bangarang scalp treatment to get rid of product buildup. Mix a tablespoon (ish) of ACV in with your conditioner and massage it into your scalp. Wrap in a plastic bag or a warm towel and chill for about 10-30 minutes. Wash and condition as normal, for gorgeous, flake-free hair.
Alright, kitchen witches. Go forth and beautify.
UNRELATED: Today is my Mom and Stepdad’s twentieth wedding anniversary. Congratulations, Jennifer and Michael!