Wash N Go Routine

What I enjoy most about being natural is the natural hair community! I love going to Target and going down the natural hair aisle, even if I don’t need anything; I have to stroll down that aisle. I am not the type that would start a conversation with strangers but I am very comfortable, however talking to other naturals on the natural hair aisle.  I usually chat with two types of women; the woman that has been natural for a while and she is picking up her staple items or checking out products she hasn’t tried before the conversation may go something like “remember when we only had a section on the bottom shelf” “so cool to see so many black owned brands in stores.” Then there’s the woman who is newly natural and totally overwhelmed by the vast amount of products, she has no idea where to begin. She may say something like “I love your hair how do you get it to do that,” or “my hair won’t do that,”  ” will this product make my hair curly”.

In my early days as a natural I really thought “product” would make my hair look like the girl on YouTube if I used “that” product exactly like she did. I wasted a lot of time and money until I realized I had to get to know my hair, what it liked, what ingredients to avoid; not because the girl on the video said or the blog post I just read; both are great tools but only when used to understand your own hair. When I come across  another natural and she asks ‘if I buy this product will my hair look like yours” my response is always this is what works for me and why it works for me (have to give those disclaimers).

Before we get into my routine let me tell you about my hair:

  • Texture: my hair has several textures (which is true of most naturals) over all my hair is coarse (not hard but the texture isn’t smooth) my hair is fine around the edges and nape, the curls at the nape of my neck are super loose and the texture is smooth, my hair is very tightly coiled at the crown, looser and wavy in the front
  • Density:  My hair is super thick
  • Porosity: which means your hair’s ability to absorb moisture mine is pretty normal as it absorbs moisture very well (it doesn’t take a lot for water penetrate) nor does  product sit on my hair, product and water are easily absorbed into my hair, my hair loves water based products (water is the first ingredient)
  • Goals: to combat dryness, and retain length

My routine is based on my hair, as well as the products I use are products that are my tried and true, use this information as a guide to help you find what works for you.

  1.  My  Q-Redew to detangle my hair before cleansing http://www.qredew.com

      Q-Redew $69



  2. Divide my hair into 8 sections after I have detangled with the Q-Redew

    Sections (don’t I look sexy)


  3. Cleanse my hair one sections at a time using DevaCurl Decadence No Poo http://www.devacurl.com
  4. After rinsing I apply a rinse out conditioner like  DevaCurl Decadence One Condition (my hair is still in sections) I let it sit on my hair while I wash my body and then rinse each section

DevaCurl No-Poo Decadence $44 32 oz

DevaCurl No-Poo Decadence $44 32 oz.

5. Apply Deep conditioner like Mielle Organics Babassu Oil Mint Deep Conditioner to each section, twist each section add steam with my Q-Redew put on a conditioning cap (leave on for 20 minutes) then rinse http://www.mielleorganics.com

Mielle Organics Babassu Oil Deep Conditioner $14.99


Curl Junkie Beauticulrs Argan and Olive Oil $19.99

6. Apply leave in conditioner today I used Curl Junkie Beauticurls Argan & Olive Oil to each section in a smoothing motion, applying a moisturizing leave in is essential for optimal results http://www.curlmart.com

7. Apply gel/styler (my ride or die) Uncle Funky’s Daughter Curly Magic to soaking wet hair, soaking wet hair makes for easy even distribution of product. ( keep spray bottle handy to re-wet hair when needed) I apply the gel in a smoothing motion to distribute product evenly and to smooth the hair cuticle, I apply the gel in small sections starting at the nape, my hair is still in sections, I apply the gel from root to tip. http://www.unclefunkysdaughter.com

Uncle Funky’s Daughter Curly Magic $25 18 oz


Hair before adding gel


Hair after adding gel


Its important to note products only enhance what you already have! Products don’t make your hair curly, products can’t make tight curls loose, products don’t “elongate” your hair or stop shrinkage.

After gel is applied (notice the length)


After gel is applied

8. Final step I DO NOT TOUCH MY HAIR I allow my hair to air dry completely before touching it! I have made this mistake early in my journey and I ended up with a frizzy mess! My hair takes about 2 days to dry, I have tried diffusing my hair which speeds up the process but the style won’t make it through the week when diffused so I air dry.

Shrinkage! 75% dry

To maintain the style I sleep with my satin bonnet on, and a satin pillowcase just in case my bonnet comes off. I moisturize as needed before bed or in the morning, I use my Q-Redew to refresh without wetting my hair.  Wash n Go is my favorite style especially in the Spring and Summer. I used to obsess over my hair looking perfect, curl definition and no frizz was my goal. I now embrace the frizz, as the style gets older my hair gets bigger and less defined which I now love! I struggled with this style for a long time until I found the right products that worked for me, deep conditioned my hair regularly, cleanse, and style my hair in sections, applying product the length of my hair to ensure every strand was coated with product and finally embracing my hair!

What’s your go to style? What are your favorite hair products? What is your hair routine?




  1. Mander
    June 26, 2017 / 8:24 pm

    Woo hoo! You know I love your beautiful hair!!! The bigger the better! 🙂

    • Karen's Essentials
      June 26, 2017 / 10:41 pm

      Thanks Mander! YAAAS the bigger the better!

  2. Joyce Riley
    June 26, 2017 / 8:37 pm

    I’m still stuck on your hair takes 2 days to dry! Wow. I believe you because Arianna”s hair is exactly like yours. Anyway my hair product is Shea moisture, I’ve tried so many different hair products but Shea moisture is the only product that really works for me. I don’t have a go to style because I keep my hair short. Im always saying I wish I had curly hair but had to learn that we all have curls it’s just that our curl pattern is different. BTW I’ve try deva curl and loved it but for some reason I stopped using it, can’t remember why. Great info you shared. As always thanks

    • Karen's Essentials
      June 26, 2017 / 10:41 pm

      Yep! 2 Days crazy right! You got everyone’s hair is different when I learned that I was good just had to find what worked for me. Yes I remember you using DevaCurl, they have a decadence line now for kinky coily hair (the products) featured in this post. I love love love it! Thanks for your input and the encouragement! You’re Welcome!

  3. CurleyKai
    June 27, 2017 / 10:22 pm

    Thank Karen, that helps a lot! Will have to give this a try. I agree, I went through a lot of disappointment when I would watch some you tubers not realizing their hair texture was nothing like mine so results did not come out the same.

    I have been putting sweet almond oil in my hair, my hair loves it, and putting a shower cap on top of the high puff or pineapple and then my silk/satin scarf on top of that and when I wake up my hair is nice and moist and really soft, not dry.

    I can usually stretch a braid and Curl for a week in various configurations, out, updo high puff with bangs, high puff, but as the week went on my hair felt dryer and dryer. This solved that problem.

    I got the idea from “fusionofcultures” youtuber who moisturizes her hair, mid week with a water-based leavin-in, homemade whipped mango butter, twist and then puts a plastic bag on her head for 20 minutes, takes it off and then puts on her satin scarf for the night.. I did try this mid week w braid n’ curl w great results, but now I am just doing a nightly shortcut of Pineappling or high puff, generously oil hair and put on plastic shower cap and silk scarf. Boom, soft pliable and bouncy and moisturized in the morning!!

    Note on twist and curl and parts!!! My hair takes a good day to dry so in the morning when I take the rods off the end of the braided sections and unbraids (with oiled fingers) if my hair is still damp, I uses soft ribbon ties, (how I learned to make my own: https://youtu.be/tWvb2EnI6Ug) grasp combine a few sections starting on top of head and band them from root to about 1-2 inches from the ends, do the same on both sides and maybe bottom in back. about 5 sections (allows it to stretch and dry, keeps curl on end and does not disturb the curl/braid pattern and gets rid of the parts!!!), Massage and finger fluff and good for shorter curlier look. as the days go by and you pineapple or re-band at night it will stretch out more)

    • Karen's Essentials
      June 29, 2017 / 6:37 am

      Thank you Kai for sharing your routine! I have never been with the twist and curl I will have to try your technique. Twist outs I can do but I struggle with the twist and curl.

  4. Heidi, Q-Redew Team
    June 29, 2017 / 5:20 pm

    Thank you for sharing your detangling and refresh experience using the Q-Redew! Gotta love the steam to avoid a two day drying process tat would be involved if you rewet the hair. Love the detailed routine and the end results are fabulous!

    • Karen's Essentials
      June 30, 2017 / 8:44 am

      Thanks Heidi! Q-Redew is my secret weapon love the brand and your awesome customer service!

  5. Irene
    June 30, 2017 / 2:55 pm

    Beautiful!! This is so helpful!! Me and my two girls have completely different density and texture. Finding products is a struggle!

    • Karen's Essentials
      June 30, 2017 / 4:24 pm

      Hi Irene!
      Yeah that was a struggle for me as well until I figured what products worked for me. There was a lot of trial and error but I now know what my hair likes. Take notes and pay attention how your hair/your girls hair responds to a particular product. Does it feel soft, hard and dry, does the product sit on top of your hair or does is it absorbed into your hair easily, does your hair feel weighed down etc. Try one new product at a time that way if you keep everything else the same and your hair acts funky you know its that product. Good thing most retailers allow you to exchange or get a refund if you don’t like a product. Glad it was helpful!

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