Saturday, January 28, 2012

Reasons to Start Your Own Kitchen Salon

Ingredients for my Winter Hair Mask
There are two trends in the natural hair community that have inspired me to make major changes in my lifestyle; greater interest in DIY hair care and greater interest in natural products. What started as a quest for healthy long natural hair has completely shifted my approach to my nutrition and expanded an already growing interest in reusing and recycling. It's amazing how much I've learned about the multifaceted uses of common items that are always in my kitchen and bathroom!

I'm sure many people are reading this thinking it sounds nice but time consuming- isn't natural hair time consuming enough? When I first started making my own hair products it was very time consuming. But I must admit I loved having an excuse to block off an entire day for pampering. Now that I have a routine and an understanding of how to balance the products, it doesn't take much longer to do my hair with purchased products than homemade products. Like with anything you improve with practice.

Still need to be convinced why you should try your own DIY Kitchen Salon? Check out the benefits I've reaped:

- I've save money because the items I use for my hair are already on my grocery list.

- I've expanded the use of packaging from previously bought products, saving a few more items from a direct trip to the landfill.

- There is no worry of harmful chemicals in my homemade products, its all natural and mostly food. If its safe enough to go in my mouth, it's safe enough to lather all ova' my booooooooody!

- Now that I understand how various ingredients work for my hair and body I can adjust the balance as needed. This is extremely important for moisture and protein balance!

- My hair has improved tenfold! It is much more resistant to breakage; maintains greater moisture and retains length (after eight years of staying at the same length without ever trimming).

- Did I mention I SAVE MONEY?!

So how many of you have I converted? How many already have a thriving kitchen salon? Tell us why you started your kitchen salon and what you love about it.

Those who are new to the DIY practice can go here for some tips on starting your own kitchen salon.

How To Start Your Own Kitchen Salon

Making flax seed gel.

Do you want outstanding hair without an outrageous price? Want to be able to pronounce all of the ingredients listed on your hair product? Then perhaps you should consider starting your own DIY kitchen salon. If you're considering it but don't know how to start, check out what I've learned.

Basic Tools
This short list of tools to keep on hand will have you set for nearly any recipe.

- A glass mixing bowl or jar. This doesn't have to be large, I use an old 8 oz. jar from a facial scrub I had years back. Glass is best because it can withstand heat. Plastic is known to release toxins when microwaved that can seep into your products.

- An empty spray bottle, or two or three, depending on how many mixtures you like. I reuse leave-in conditioner spray bottles. Its not a good idea to store mixtures for too long because bacteria will grow. I make small batches of a water and aloe juice solution for each use so as not to be wasteful.

- A few containers with screw tops for storing mixtures that are non-perishable or have a long shelf life. I also reuse old containers for this purpose. Placing a layer of plastic wrap tightly under the top can extend the shelf life a day or two.

- An old stocking will serve a few purposes. You can cut it at the top of the thighs, sew or tie the loose ends and use as a stocking cap for sleeping or dryer styling. You can use one leg as a head band or hair tie and use the other leg as a strainer for your flax seed gel. Stockings are as functional as they are fashionable!

Basic Ingredients
These ingredients can be found in most grocery stores and pharmacies. They are either non-perishable or have long shelf lives and all are useful in a variety of ways.

- aloe vera juice
- apple cider vinegar (ACV)
- baking soda
- canned coconut milk (I use half for my hair and half in a meal)
- castille soap (like Dr. Bronner's)
- [extra virgin] coconut oil (EVCO)
- essential oils
- flax seeds
- glycerin 
- honey
- [extra virgin] olive oil (EVOO)
- vitamin E

Excited to get started? I hope so!

Any of you veterans want to share what's worked for you or what have you learned never to do again?