Let’s Talk – Wash Day Dread

For all of my natural sistahs out there, you know what wash day dread is. It’s that onset anxiety we get when we know its about that time to take down the protective style and wash our hair. For my straight and loose curled friends, this will be a good opportunity to see the struggle of that of a kinky haired girl.

Lawd have mercy, I don’t know if I’m ready for this. I literally have to come up with a game plan when it comes to tackling my hair. I’m not saying that I can’t do a quick wash and then leave, but if I want to be able to do my hair completely later I might as well knock it all out at once. Typically for us kinky curly girls, we have to set aside a whole day to commemorate washing. There is prep work, the actual act of washing and de-tangling, making sure to de-tangle as you go, and post work.

Don’t worry silky Susan, the prep work isn’t as complex as inferred. Prep work is simply getting your hair ready for shampooing/conditioning. Some people like to plait they’re hair, or in other words they braid/twist the hair in large sections. This helps to ensure that your hair is already untangled before hitting the water which will make the entire process much easier and keep it from kinking back up. Another method is to apply leave in or an oil based product to first de-tangle then shampoo. Then there’s those that live on the edge and just hop into the shower and make it work. I, my friend, am a fantastic combination of all three. Now for the ultra naturalista, do not panic. I already know that skipping the first two steps leads to breakage and stress on the hair ans wah wah wah. It’s cool I still have growth retention.

Because there are different levels of nappage, there are going to be different ways in which a person washes their hair. I know some can do the pull method. They stand under the faucet and drag the shampoo through the hair and massaging the scalp. I can’t do that, pssshhhh, right. A good portion of us 4C girls use the twist in sections method. This allows us to target the scalp area. Our ENEMY. Since our hair is so thick, dense, and resistant to water intake, we generally focus on getting rid of built up product from our scalp and hair. This doesn’t require heavy scrubbing or large amounts of shampoo. Our hair type loves a good co-wash or hot water rinse. Done both! Having the hair braided or twisted reduces the amount of time taken to re-comb our hair and allows us to clean what’s important.

Once we have the hair washed, conditioned and towel dried/blow dried, we proceed into the post wash. MOISTURIZING. For me the easiest way to do this without being overly tired is through the L.O.C. method. L.O.C. stands for liquid-oil-creme. so while my hair is still wet I get an oil of choice and apply roughly throughout my hair. Those pre-made sections will come in handy here. From there I proceed with the style I have in mind. With each section I apply the necessary amount of leave in conditioner and creme moisturizer. I found that if I do it this way, it seems less of a chore and more like a normal persons routine. I could do all my moisturizing first then style, but my brain automatically thinks “Dis too much”. Depending on how intricate the hairdo is, the longer it will take.

If you have ever wondered why it is taking Karmela so long to change her hairstyle, it is probably because she has “Wash Day Dread”. I should declare this to be a serious condition amongst those of us with the rubber band tight curls. It’s an epidemic! Hahahaha, but no, this is what we go through. Don’t touch our hair because you will speed up the timeline for the next wash day, and we can’t have that!!!!

Until next time! Thanks for dropping in! Like, Comment, Share!




  1. The struggle is real lol I’ve been natural one year now and wash day is definitely one I dread. First of all…I didn’t realize that without a relaxer my hair could grow so thick, so being natural for me has been an eye opening experience. On wash day, which I usually put off as long as possible I still struggle with what works for my hair. I’m only a year in so I’m still trying out products and methods to see what works best and what will make the process easier for me. My hair tangles badly,after the wash/shampoo so once thats done I’m almost ready to cut it off because detangling is 95% of my struggle on wash day. I definitely read your post taking in any pointers I could.


    • I really hear you. As you go you’ll learn what works for you and your hair. I switch off between finger de-tangling, using a Denman brush or a wide tooth comb. For me it’s easiest when my hair is damp and sectioned into a minimum of 4 sections.


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