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non toxic hair care












SO, I have been on a journey to detoxifying my skincare, haircare and food for just over two years now...

I posted last week on my youtube channel a video of how I maintain my hair using non toxic hair products which I will link in case you want to watch it; especially because I do show you in real time how I wash and protective style my hair for the week.

I'm unsure how many of you would be aware of this, but there was a study published not so long ago that stated that hair products made for and marketed to women of colour are considerably high in toxic chemicals. The study found that products for women of colour contained 70% more harmful and dangerous chemicals than other hair products that are marketed for the general public. I don't know about you, but that is a pretty disturbing statistic.

These chemicals include high levels of endocrine disrupting chemicals that can cause chronic illness and cancer as well as uterine fibroids and dysfunctional periods.

One thing I find even more worrying is that a lot of these products are also made and marketed for children with afro textured hair.

Again, a lot of people could read this and say it doesn't matter, it's just hair products; but the reality is these chemicals are being absorbed into your body. It may not seem like a big deal but imagine using the same toxic products over and over again on a weekly basis over a long period of time. That is a lot of toxic build up!

It's no surprise to me then, that uterine fibroids are found mostly in women of afro/carribean descent.

It's amazing to see now, that our hair in it's natural state is being embraced a lot more often and rather celebrated, but the reality is, just over ten years ago it was almost unheard of for women to rock their 'natural' hair.

I remember my hair being relaxed from the age of about four or five, and I continued to relax my hair well into my twenties until I went completely natural in 2013. That is a long time to use relaxer on your scalp and hair. I can't even begin to imagine the damage!

Women with naturally straight hair will have never been exposed to such harsh chemicals let alone for that period of time.


This isn't an extensive list, but I have briefly listed a few, but common, chemicals that you should take note off when reading the labels and completely avoid in your haircare products:


Fragrance or Parfum [This is a term used to hide hundreds of harmful chemicals that companies do not have to disclose]

Calcium hydroxide

Formaldehyde or Methylene Glycol [formaldehyde is also released by DMDM hydantoin, diazolidinyl urea, and imidazolididinyl urea]

Lead acetate [This is usually found in hair dyes]


Parabens (Propylparaben, Butylparaben, or Methylparaben)

Petrolatum, Parrafin or Mineral Oil

Retyinal palmitate

Specific alcohols: Alcohol denat, ethanol, propanol, isopropyl, propyl, SD alcohol #4




"Another thing that needs to be mentioned is the fact that

many brands marketed for women of colour use 'buzzwords'

on their products in an attempt to appear 'chemical free'.

Just because the product lacks parabens, SLS and mineral oil doesn't

mean there isn't an onslaught of other chemicals within the product that can and will harm you,"

Let me balance this by saying that not all chemicals are harmful, but by rule of thumb, I only buy products that are, generally, organic and made with ingredients that I recognise in their natural states. Anything that looks too complex or complicated to read is a straight no no for me.

Another thing that needs to be mentioned is the fact that many brands marketed for women of colour use 'buzzwords' on their products in an attempt to appear 'chemical free'. Just because the product lacks parabens, SLS and mineral oil doesn't mean there isn't an onslaught of other chemicals within the product that can and will harm you.

It's incredibly disappointing as well, because a lot of the brands that we grew up with or appear to be 'black owned' have in fact been bought out by commercial giants like L'Oreal and Unilever. These companies are known to put profits over people, and they use chemicals that are nothing more than industrial waste. All of the products I see in the supermarkets and shops have been green washed to appear clean, and are specifically marketed for black women when the products themselves do nothing for them.

Many of you know, if you've been following my channel for a while, that I used to make all of my hair products using ayurvedic ingredients and practices. I made everything from my hair cream and conditioners, down to my gel. The only downside to that being; making product every week for my hair is very time consuming. Especially because everything I use on my hair I also use for my daughter.

This is what led me to start looking for ready made products that not only worked for my hair texture, but also featured no chemicals or harmful ingredients.

I'm going to introduce you to a few of the products I use in case you're stumped finding truly natural hair care that works for your hair type as a WOC.

If you want to see how I use these products and how I found them, click the link to watch the video on youtube.












onion oil



One of the home made remedies I created for my hair was onion water. Onions are very effective at combating bad bacteria as well as being stimulant for the hair follicles in the scalp. I began to make this because my aim was to use natural means to get the healing my scalp needed. My hair previously was covered in a fungal type of eczema that shed constantly so I needed antifungal and antibacterial remedies that would counteract this, but at the same time add nourishment to my hair and scalp.

To make onion oil, you chop up a whole onion in roughly a cup to two cups of water and let it boil until the onions are softened and have lost it's colour. This doesn't necessarily take ages but amongst all the other things, the time definitely added up!

I was looking for a hair oil on amazon and when I saw this I jumped to it immediately because I never seen a hair product made with onion before. I had already experienced the benefits of onion rinses, so it made sense for me to get this in order to eliminate that step in my wash care routine.

Now, I normally use the onion oil as a pre to my shampoo. I saturate my hair in it. Leave it for a few hours before I wash it out. If I use it during the week I tend to leave it in but I won't use too much.

Another reason I love this oil is because it also carries a number of different oils that benefit the hair, and they're all organic. I find that combining different oils gives you an all rounded benefit, as each oil has it's own property and 'focus' area so to speak, so you're essentially tackling many different issues with one product.

The last thing I will also mention is that despite the onion oil element, the oil doesn't smell. It has a smell but its not oniony at all. My cousin that was with me when I was using it was pleasantly surprised and she even said it smelled nice, so don't be put off!

Onion water on the other hand does, so if you do use it no doubt you will need to wash it out!


So, I first discovered Fushi in whole foods, and started buying their oils because the quality was so good and also in glass bottles rather than plastic.

I also loved the fact that it was a small local business rather than me just buying all of my oils from 'random' sellers on amazon.

I think it was through following them on instagram that prompted me to look at their website, but I realised that they did hair products as well! At this point, I was looking for some new products for my hair anyway, because almost all of the products I used on my hair, I made myself. I desperately needed products that had the same or similar ingredients to what I already used to shorten the process. A wash day for me would take about 48 hours!

The main method I use to take care of my hair is called Ayurveda, and this is a process that uses mainly herbs and the properties of herbs to maintain the hair.

Each herb has it's own property or function, and I used Bhringaraj in my routine simply because it reduces the amount of shedding and hair fall and stimulates the hair follicles for new growth.

It was an actual moment for me when I saw they had a shampoo and conditioner that was infused with it. I was also amazed too find that the shampoo and conditioner had both been infused with 50% bhringaraj which is a lot!

I always find that when hair products feature a key or important ingredient, the percentage of it in the actual product is next to nothing!

I wasted no time in purchasing the shampoo and conditioner together and I'm so glad I did becauseI wasn't disappointed. The shampoo wasn't stripping at all but my hair felt clean, and the conditioner, along with a protein treatment I'll show you later, made my hair feel so soft and easy to manage.

This set is set to be part of staple products, as I used it in my daughters hair and it was amazing in her hair too!




fushi shampoo
deep follicle treatment

I'm sure by now, all of you reading this would have heard of rice water right? It was one of the viral discoveries made by natural hair youtubers on instagram, and many people purported the use of rice water in growing their hair in record amounts of time.

I did this for a little while but found that I could never get the right balance, As I would plan to use rice water on the days that I would cook rice but still end up wasting it.

The bottom line really, is that our hair is and needs protein to maintain strength and retain length.

Now, theres's a lady on instagram called Enitan, who studies, or has studied, the science of afro hair for a living. She's incredibly passionate about what she does and she regularly hosts talks, seminars and appointments for people who need help growing their hair. The progress pics of her clients as well as her own beautiful hair tells me this lady knows what she's doing, and it's for that reason that I bought into both her protein defence and her hair follicle oil.

The protein defence is so simple and made with only one or two ingredients. No chemicals or artificial chemicals added, which is another reason I bought into her products because she's very similar to me and the way I think in regards to what we expose ourselves to.

The protein defence is also super easy to use as you only need to add 1TBSP to every 3 TBSP of your normal conditioner. Also, you only need to leave it in your hair for twenty minutes which literally feels like 5 minutes after you've put it on. The process is just so quick.

When I used this in my hair combined with the fushi conditioner, my hair came out feeling as if I had done a henna mask. It was soft but also incredibly strong.

The deep follicle treatment is also an amazing product because it has literally helped regrow my hair where I started to experience balding not too long ago. The main ingredient in the oil is cannabis sativa which is said to stimulate the hair follicles for new growth which I guess is what it says on the tin!

I'm so glad I found Enitan because I also think it's important, not only to invest in smaller brands that hand craft all their product, but also to buy product from another woman of colour because she would understand first hand what it takes to look after afro and natural hair.


Protein Defence:

Deep Follicle Treatment:

These last two products are what I use to seal my hair once I've used the follicle growth oil in my scalp all the way to ends.

They are both butters; one is pure mango butter by sky organics, and the other is a clay pomade that I originally purchased from uproar to try and slick my edges down [it didn't work]. After having it sitting around for a while, I decided to use it as a sealant because the main two ingredients in it were shea butter and castor oil with a few other oils and essential oils. Again, no chemicals or artificial ingredients added.

If your hair is finer or looser in curls, it will probably work for you as a type of gel because it works well for my daughter. It's just not great for me because my curl pattern is so tight, my hair just springs back!

It's such a shame I had run out of my holy grail product by the time I did this post, but the final product I want to tell you about that is all natural and worked like a dream in my scalp was T444z cream.

This is the cream that I used from the time I shaved my head until now and completely nothing else. Come to think about it, I think T444z cream deserves a blog post all by itself!

The base of the cream is shea butter and again, it's infused with herbs and essential oils that maintain the health of your scalp and stimulate hair growth. Every single person I've recommended it to has said it works wonders!

Honestly, my wash days now are so quick and easy, I can actually fit other things into my day!

One thing I will say before I end this post is that, it's time that we started to take care of ourselves. The companies that are formulating our hair care know nothing about our hair; and in addition to that, are happy to put their profits over using clean ingredients that actually work. The minute we come together and say NO to the rubbish they're putting out, we will be the ones in the driving seat with the ability to change our own hair care game.

Don't settle for the crap sitting in the hair shop shelves, supermarket or drugstore shelves anymore. There are many brands out there that do so much better for our health, hair and the environment.

Take your coin and invest in some of these brands and watch how quickly these big brands change the products in the way we demand them to.


If you have used any of the products mentioned, please let me know in the comments, as well as any other recommendations you have for natural products for women of colour!


Afrocenchix, is another brand I have to cover soon as I only discovered them last week after my friend sent it to me!


Mango Butter:

Uproar Clay Pomade:

sky organics mango butter
uproar clay pomade


  1. Lynn
    October 8, 2019 / 9:53 am

    These products looks like they can only be purchased in U K is this true.?please respondlynn

    • Joanne RH
      February 6, 2020 / 8:51 pm

      I think so possibly but some of them can be bought on amazon. x

  2. Lynn
    October 8, 2019 / 9:57 am

    Dark Mark’s I would love to get rid of been the bane in my life .lynn


    • Joanne RH
      February 6, 2020 / 8:51 pm

      Rosehip oil is amazing for dark marks x

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