Thursday, 19 March 2015

My Thoughts on the Max Hydratiion Method

In my first post on the Maximum Hydration Method, I shared details of the regimen and my results from the 7 day jumpstart challenge recommended by Pinkecube. As promised I will be sharing my thoughts on this method. Kindly note that these are my views and I am still researching the method and love to read and hear thoughts on the method from other ladies.

The approved products dilemma
I am currently in a phase in my natural hair journey where I want to explore products in the bid to find what works perfectly for me hair.  The recommended products are however quality products that contain all natural ingredients avoiding sulfates, silicones, parabens, drying alcohols etc and I guess these are worth trying anyway.

There is a list of ingredients to be avoided however I am wondering if I should avoid them just because they did not work on someone else’s hair. I do not believe my hair is protein sensitive, for example, and also I live in a humid (very humid) city and glycerin pulls moisture into my hair and not out of it. The use of styling products that are glycerin free is useful for defined twist-outs and braid-outs in humid conditions.

Where is the place of protein in all this?
As the regimen is focused mainly on moisture infusion and most of the products do not contain moisture, I have been wondering about protein treatments which I feel are vital for healthy hair. The Cherry Lola treatment acts as a moisturizing & protein treatment and it is recommended to be done every 2 weeks. I wonder if this will be enough to maintain the balance? I am still inclined towards using protein reconstructing conditioners as I believe they are vital for healthy hair. As usual for this I will focus on how my hair feels and needs; if I need to use of reconstructing conditioner I will choose one with natural ingredients.

The Baking Soda debate

Okay, so the use of baking soda for hair is quite controversial due to the pH of baking soda and there is a post on the MHM website addressing baking soda concerns. While the method states to dilute the baking soda with water and/or conditioner, I wonder if anyone has tested the pH of the resulting mix to determine the safety for hair use. My main concern is the long term effect on hair and due to this I will no longer be using baking soda on my hair (I used this for the clarifying step during the 7 day challenge). 

Issues with itchy scalp
I experienced itchy scalp some days into the regimen and I am unsure if the culprit was the baking soda or bentonite clay. I was able to remedy this by applying jojoba oil to my scalp.

The Time Factor
Initially when researching the method, I thought phew! how time consuming!!! However, there are several time cutting methods that can be utliized and this involves basically doing each step for the minimum amount of time, for example
Step 1: Clarify -15mins
Step 2: Cowash/Deep Condition/Detangle 30-45mins (incorporating heat) The length of time for detangling depends on hair length and technique
Step 3:  Clay Rinse 15mins (mix clay enough for 2-3 applications ahead to save time)
Step 4 & 5: Leave In & Gel application (I think this depends on individual technique although if you are shingling section by section for optimal definition it can take 20-30 mins)

It is recommended to repeat the regimen every 3-5 days not every single day as is the misconception by some. 

Curl Altering Claims
Some opinions have been expressed that the method alters curl patterns, however this is not true. I always noticed how my curl pattern would be expressed when conditioner was applied but after rinsing out the conditioner the pattern was no where to be found except I re-wet my hair by misting with water.  

The use of conditioner and for this method,clay enhance the existing curls and the styling method captures the curls to retain this. The claim of this method however is that once the hair is fully hydrated and retaining moisture there will be curl definition from root to tip.

Could this be my new regimen?
I am currently exploring whether or not to continue MHM because I know in a few months I will not have the time to jump into the shower several times to rinse my hair and reapply products. The options I am considering are;
- Continue MHM until I reach what is termed Maximum Hydration then switch to a modified curly girl method.
- Adopt a regular curly girl method with curly girl approved products but incorporate clay rinsing /mask once a week.
- Have one wash-day and do the MHM on that day; other days will be a simple cowash.
-Adopt a regular regimen but periodically do a 7 day moisture infusion challenge which will basically follow all MHM steps and use approved products (I think this can be adopted after protective styles or when one's hair is feeling dry).

Finally; Is it worth it???
Yes, I believe the method is worth trying but I advise that you research all aspects, especially ingredients that are controversial. It is important to know why you are using a particular ingredient and it's effects on your hair.  I would recommend this method for ladies who just big chopped as the hair is particularly dry at this point.

I am pretty happy to have stumbled on this method and glad I had the time to actually try it out. I will continue to follow the MHM regimen for the rest of this month and reassess my schedule and regimen. (I will be having baby number 3 next month y'all; a girl!!!) 

I would love to hear your thoughts on the method; do you think it's a bandwagon worth jumping on, is it worth the effort and time? Do share!

1 comment:

  1. I am little doubtful about using baking soda on hair. I am really? There are lots of remedies out there to maintain healthy hair. I would try one of them and hair loss treatment but I am not sure about baking soda experience.