- What is the 30-day detox?
- What is the point of the 30-day detox?
- Do you need to do the 30-day detox?
- Benefits of 30-day detox
- What are the principles of the 30-day detox?
- How to do the 30-day detox? Including product recommendations
- Why the 30-day detox is misunderstood
- Issues with the 30-day detox
What is the 30-day detox?
This article explores the 30-day detox. Surprisingly, the 30-day natural hair detox challenge is not a new phenomenon. Contrary to its rise in popularity over the last few years. Arguably, the spike in popularity originated from two US-based hairstylists, Aeleise Ollarvia, a veteran cosmetologist and Aishia Strickland licensed cosmetologist from Black Girl Curls.
According to the founders, Aeleise and Aishia, the 30-day hair challenge is very simple. Based on the ideas in the book 'Wash Your Damn Hair' it’s no revelation that the core principle is to wash your hair with shampoo.
A key component of the detox is to avoid the following raw ingredients in isolation:
- Raw Coconut Oil
- Pure Castor Oil
- Raw Shea Butter
These ingredients in their raw, unprocessed and solid-state are unable to penetrate the hair shaft due to their large molecular sizes. As a result, they create a film coating on the hair. To combat this, the founders recommend the use of a clarifying/chelating shampoo. To effectively remove this product buildup of oils and butters from natural hair products.
The 30-day detox advocates for more shampooing than co-washing to improve curl definition and increase scalp health.
What is the point of the 30-day detox?
Undoubtedly, the focus of the detox is to clean natural hair and rid it of product buildup.
The foundation of the challenge is to remove set systems and procedures within the natural hair community and replace them with factual ones. Hence why the 30-day is centred around learning product formulations and styling techniques. Namely, to learn what your natural hair looks and feels like after clarifying and without the coating from conditioners.
The aim of the 30-day detox is not only to educate but debunk myths such as the following but not limited to:
- Dirt doesn't grow the hair
- Co-washing is a replacement for shampoo
- ACV Treatments or bentonite clay clays remove impurities from the hair. Mitigating the need for shampooing
- Oils and butters moisturise hair
Do you need to do the 30-day detox?
The 30-day detox may be of interest to you if you have been suffering from the following:
- Product buildup
- Drier hair than usual
- Lack of curl or coil definition
- Limp hair
- Lustre hair
You may also be interested in the 30-day detox if:
- Wash day is too complicated
- You are looking to simplify your routine
- You dislike the number of steps for styling
- You are interested in mastering a single style such as a Wash and Go
For the reasons listed above, you may need to do the 30-day detox or a variation of it. If you have previously used products that contain heavy butters and do not use a clarifying/chelating shampoo.
Benefits of 30-day detox
Based on the individuals sharing their journey on social media via Youtube and Instagram many have praised the challenge. We have briefly summarised some of the benefits:
- A simplified approach to natural hair care
- Reports of better hair manageability
- Money saved on unnecessary products
- More curl definition
What are the principles of the 30-day detox?
As the title of the book suggests, the first principle is to start with clean hair. This simply means to shampoo at least once with a clarifying shampoo in the first week of the challenge. Then use cleansing shampoos afterwards.
Then, hydrate using a quality rinse-out or deep conditioner. To assist with detangling and sealing in moisture from the water.
Applying a botanical gel on soaking wet hair. To nourish, soften and define curls and coils. A topper gel can be applied for more definition and hold.
Dry the hair using your favourite method albeit a hooded dryer/diffuser or air drying
How to do the 30-day detox?
Week 1: Clarify
- Saturate your hair with water
- Apply a clarifying/chelating shampoo to remove buildup from oils and butters (your hair could be chronically dehydrated due to a build-up over time, if this is a step you previously missed).
- Apply shampoo to scalp, edges and hair
Recommeded clarifying shampoos
- tgin Moisture Rich Sulfate Free Shampoo 13 oz
- Aunt Jackie's Power Wash Intense Moisture Clarifying Shampoo 12 oz
- MICHE Beauty Cleansed Sulfate-Free Shampoo 8 oz
Subsequent Weeks: Cleanse
- Now that your hair is clean and you have put aside your oil and butter-heavy products. Your hair is not as dirty and thus no longer requires a clarifying shampoo.
- Swap that out with a moisturising one to clean your hair.
Recommeded moisturising shampoos
- Camille Rose Naturals Lavender Fresh Cleanse 8 oz
- Mielle Babassu Conditioning Sulfate-Free Shampoo 8 oz
- The Mane Choice Easy On The Curls - Detangling Hydration Shampoo (8oz)
- Apply conditioner to dripping wet hair for more slip
- For better application and ease, section your hair
- For hair that is prone to matting and dryness, apply your conditioner in sections first. Have a steamy shower then start detangling to allow it to penetrate
- When detangling, start at the ends and work up to the roots
- Use as much conditioner as you need (you can use the excess conditioner for other sections)
- Turn your brush vertically when smoothing conditioner for easier detangling
- Tangle Teezer Naturally Curly Detangling Hair Brush
- Tangle Teezer Scalp Exfoliator and Massager
- Camille Rose Naturals Moroccan Pear Conditioning Custard 355 ml
- tgin Triple Moisture Replenishing Conditioner For Natural Hair - 13 oz
- Oyin Honey Hemp Detangling Conditioner 8.4 oz
- Innersense Beauty Hydrating Cream Conditioner 10 oz
For the best results, make sure your hair is dripping wet to ensure your curl definition is captured. If applying gel outside of the shower, keep a spray bottle on hand.
- Soak hair under the shower and only apply a natural botanical gel
- Section hair again for easy and even application
- Use the praying hand's method for definition
- If your roots are drone to frizzing, matting or simply thick, apply and focus some more gel there
- For looser textures such as waves, a mousse may suffice
- Naturals with thicker and tighter coils can use a topper gel for more hold
- If you want a more defined look, focus more on smoothing and raking.
- If there’s a lot of humidity, apply more gel
- Tangle Teezer Fine Mist Spray Bottle
- Innersense Beauty I Create Hold Styling Gel 10 oz
- Camille Rose Naturals Curl Maker Curling Jelly 355ml
- Uncle Funky's Daughter Curly Magic Curly Stimulator
- Innersense Beauty I Create Hold Styling Gel 10 oz
- Kinky-Curly Original Curling Custard Natural Styling Gel 8 oz
- The Doux Mousse Hi-Defintion Control Mousse Texture Foam 8 oz
If you can, use a hooded dryer to lock the curl in place before it starts shrinking and frizzing up.
Otherwise, use your preferred method of drying either air drying or diffusing.
Step 4:Protect Your Curls
The nighttime routine is essential for maintaining your curls over the week. Consider how you will sleep at night to prevent denting your curls and stop them from matting throughout the week.
Consider using a spray bottle filled with water to re-active the gel if your hair starts to frizz up.
- Plain Various Coloured Satin Head Scarf
- Satin Rowe Reversible Navy Blush Bonnet
- Kitsch Satin Sleep Scrunchies
- Kitsch Luxurious Blush Satin Pillowcase
Why the 30-day detox is misunderstood
The 30-day detox has been quite controversial on social media. This is mainly due to it being misunderstood and over complicated.
- If you do use heavy oils and butters, simply use a clarifying shampoo more frequently
- Leave-in conditioners aren't necessary, your rinse-out conditioner or deep conditioner can be enough
- Avoid applying oils and butters to dry hair, it's only sealing in dryness
- Using twisting butters, and defining creams aren't bad for you. And only become so if you aren't regularly cleansing the hair to remove the build-up they cause over time.
- Wash and go's aren't only reserved for looser curl textures. You can wash and go even with the tightest curl pattern
Issues with the 30-day detox
Just like with any detox or trending challenge. It is important to only participate if you want to and if you think it will be beneficial for you. If you are happy with your current hair regime and are maintaining healthy hair then continue doing what works. As challenges could result in more breakage and damage over time.
Perhaps, the biggest issue with the 30-day detox is financial. To receive more in-depth information regarding the detox, you must pay for the Black Girls Curl book and/or their course. Making it inaccessible for most people.
It also encourages readers to meet with a stylist for hair consultation, another financial barrier.
Lastly, the recommended products for the challenge tend to be very expensive due to their botanical ingredients.