My favourite recipe and tips for happy afro hair –
Afro hair care can tend to set you back a fair bit if you don’t live in an area with high demand, so it helps to know how to make your own hair products cheaply at home.
Homemade hair cream!
I knew the very talented Rachael Cooper many years ago when I lived in Boston, USA, and despite being on different continents now, I’m still learning from her and her amazing hair.
You can find her on YouTube where she dispenses the best information about hair care and DIY hair products. This video was the one that hooked me, and I’ve been coming back to it for the last two years.
Where to find the ingredients for Rachael’s DIY hair cream:
Most of these can be found in your local supermarket or health store. Failing that, I’ve included links to online sellers below.
Aloe vera gel/juice – 1 cup
Cocoa butter – 3/4 cup
Coconut oil – 1/4 cup
Xanthan gum – 1 1/4 tablespoons
I’ve tried this recipe a few times and I’ve realised a few things: first, I didn’t like the heavy smell of the cocoa butter very much, but then I don’t wear perfumes because of not liking persistent scents. The second time I made this, I reduced the amount of cocoa butter and increased the coconut oil.
Second, my hair absolutely soaked up the hair cream so quickly that I thought I’d struggle to make it economical enough. That was until I played around with the recipe a bit and figured out that my hair was really responding most to the aloe juice!
I also made my version of this hair cream with more aloe juice, and slathered it on. The results? Nothing short of a miracle! Honestly, I wondered how I’d managed to get this far without realising this before.
The aloe juice on its own was enough to make my hair curl in ways I could have only dreamed of before. Since that discovery, I’ve been using plain aloe juice in a little spritz bottle as a detangler, refresher and setting lotion.
Aloe moisturising spritzer
Here’s a simple recipe for an even more moisturising spritzer:
1/2 cup aloe juice
1/4 cup glycerin
1 teaspoon water
Pour into a spritz bottle and shake vigorously. Apply when your hair needs a lift, but you don’t want more oils.
Making your own hair cream variations
The basis of this hair cream is a simple emulsion – an oil and water mix – in a ratio of 1:1. Any combination of oils and water/juice will yield a creamy lotion if beaten well, and the xanthan gum helps to keep the mixture in that emulsified state.
The key is to experiment until you find something you love:
Instead of cocoa butter and coconut oil you can try olive oil or shea butter.
Instead of leaving your hair cream at a 1:1 ratio, you can do as I have and slowly add more aloe vera juice after you have whisked your cream to the original recipe consistency, if you want a more liquid lotion.
Make your first batch of hair cream without any of the optional ingredients, then set aside smaller portions to add different items to, such as the cinnamon.
Homemade flaxseed / linseed hair gel
You can make a fantastic, all natural hair gel by boiling linseeds (flaxseeds if you’re in the US) in water. Boil to your preferred consistency and strain the seeds out – a good way to make clean-up easier is to cut off the foot of an old pair of tights, pour your linseed in, tie it shut and boil. Then when it’s cool, you can squeeze the gel out of the bag without getting seeds everywhere.
This gel doesn’t last very long before it spoils though, so don’t bother making it too far in advance, and keep it in the fridge once you do.
The great thing is it’s so easy, quick and cheap that you can make it up without much fuss.
I hope you’ve found some easy afro hair recipes for you!
The great thing about making your own hair products is that you can change them and make exactly what you want, so get stuck in and start making some delicious hair food!
Hello, I’m so happy I found your recipe going to try it. I have an oil blend I use on my hair I was wondering if I could substitute it instead of using coconut oil because it makes my hair dry.
Hi Nuella, I’d say to definitely give it a try! The thing that may change is the consistency, so you may get a more liquid result. I use olive oil sometimes as a substitute and it does work as a hair cream, but comes out runnier. Hope it goes well!