Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Natural Hair Lingo...

When I first entered the "world" of researching and blogging on natural hair care, I was hit with acroynoms and terms that had me totally confused and stuck with trying to figure out what the meanings were.  After all, the "Natural Hair World" have a tongue of its own and definitely speaks in code, lol.

Here is a very helpful guide to some of the most commonly used acronyms and terms that you may find in the world of natural hair...

  • ACV - Apple Cider Vinegar, typically used to clarify the hair.
  • BC - Big Chop, the first time your permed hair off.
  • CG - Curly Girl, not using shampoos with sulfates, mainly washing with conditioner and not using any products with silicones.
  • Clarify - Washing your hair to remove product build up, dirt, oil or anything clogging the hair follicles in your scalp.
  • Co-Wash - Wash hair with only conditioner. 
  • DC - Deep Conditioner.
  • Dusting - A light trim, usually about 1/4″ or less of the ends of your hair.
  • EVCO - Extra Virgin Coconut Oil.
  • EVOO - Extra Virgin Olive Oil.
  • HG - Holy grail a product your hair LOVES.
  • Humectants - Ingredients or type of products that draw moisture from the air and into the hair shaft. Most naturals don’t like to use humectants in dry weather because the products will draw moisture from your hair (since there’s no moisture in the air) and dry it out.
  • JBCO - Jamaican Black Castor Oil.
  • Manipulation - The amount of time you spend touching or doing anything to your hair on a frequent basis (i.e. brushing, combing, detangling, etc.). 
  • Porosity - Your hair’s ability to soak up moisture. The more porous a strand is, the more quickly moisture will be absorbed into the cuticle.
  • Protective Styling - Any hair style that protects the ends of your hair from exposure to elements such as the weather, clothing, etc. Protective styles can be worn for days at a time so that there is low manipulation to your hair (i.e. twists, flat twists, cornrows, braids, etc.)
  • Sealing - Sealing moisture into your hair. This is done after a moisturizer/leave-in has been applied and usually done with a heavier type of oil or butter. 
  • Shrinkage - When your curls tighten and “shrink” making the length of your hair appear shorter than it actually is, usually when the hair is wet.
  • Slip - How well a product allows your fingers/comb to glide through your hair. The more slip, the easier it is to detangle.
  • Stretching - A very simple technique used to lengthen the curls in the hair without heat. (i.e. banding, twisting, braiding).
  • TWA - Teeny Weeny Afro.
  • Twist Out - A hair style where two strand twists or flat twists are done in hair, dried completely, untwisted and gently separated to create fullness. 
  • Wash- N-Go - A styling method where you wash your hair, apply some product if needed and go, usually allowing hair to air dry.

Credit:  La Coco Bella
More can be found here: Essence: Ultimate Natural Hair Dictionary by Jenelle Stewart & Nicole Marie Melton

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