Afro, wavy, frizzy, curly or coily hair used to be seen as a ‘problem’ – and this meant ‘taming’ it as if it were a wild beast or naughty child. Thankfully, this is no longer the case. With the natural hair movement burgeoning on social media via the hashtag #naturalhair along with the blockbuster success of Black Panther and the Tom Ford SS18 show, it is clear that we are throwing away the old restrictive rules and embracing diversity – and curls!
And a growing number of indie brands are giving us the products to empower our natural ‘kinkiness’. Rose Ovensehi founded Flora & Curl after getting fed up with the straightening chemicals and drying alcohols she had been using on her hair previously. Apply the hydrating Flower Garden Hair Butter Concentrate (£26, floracurl.com as a deep conditioning treatment, to define natural curls or to style bantu knots. Use Big Hair Soft Co-wash Conditioner (£16, bighair.co.uk) between washes and the silicone-free formula smooths natural kinks and curls.
Meanwhile, Afro Hairdresser of the Year Charlotte Mensah has created the perfect Paddle Brush (£22, charlottemensah.com) to detangle textured hair.
Ever more of us are seeking nontoxic products that don’t compromise on efficacy. Luckily, new kid on the skincare block Herbivore Botanicals delivers on both fronts. Founded by US husband-and-wife team Julia Wills and Alex Kummerow, the brand uses organic ingredients and excludes fillers (ingredients that are devoid of value for the skin, but make the product cheaper to produce). I mixed one heaped teaspoon of the powdery Pink Clay Exfoliating Mask (£20, spacenk.com) with two teaspoons of water, massaged the paste into my face and left it to dry for five minutes before rinsing. The next day, my skin was smoother and softer with a satisfyingly natural glow.
Feature by Bella Blissett. Beauty assistant: Alice Robertson