Last year, a few months into my journey, I tried an ACV rinse which involves diluting apple cider vinegar into water. At this time, only about 6″ of my hair was texlaxed which left the res of my hair bone straight. In other words, I was left with hard, crunchy hair with soft, shiny new growth. I rinsed my hair for a while to no avail. I hated it.
I had been hearing about tea rinses, but after the ACV rinse, I was too traumatized to be bothered. So I kept lurking threads in LHCF to learn more about tea rinsing. Unlike ACV rinsing, there are more options with tea, so if you don’t like one, you can use another.
Originally, my goal with tea rinsing was to reduce shedding and increase shine. By the time I started tea rinsing, I had been on my journey for a year and my texlaxed hair already grew out some so I hade about CBL-APL texlaxed hair and porosity issues were corrected since I only had those issues with my bone straight hair.
*With tea rinses, most benefits are usually attributed to caffeinated teas.
I started with Oolong tea. It was ok but I felt it made my hair shed more. It didn’t make my hair hard when rinsing and was quite pleasant, but if you didn’t do research, Oolong could make you give up rinsing before you barely start. I would recommend Oolong for tea rinsing if you want a mild tea rinse for the added benefit of shine.
I upgraded to Green tea. I used Green tea because I heard its not as intense as Black tea and doesn’t darken the hair over time. Green tea is actually pretty good as it didn’t leave my hair too hard, reduced shedding, allowed my hair to somehow be more receptive to DC-ing and treatments and left me with shiny hair. It also added good body and did not conflict with my regimen. I would recommend Green Tea to someone new to tea rinsing as it is neutral and not discriminating.
Now, while Green tea reduced my shedding, it not reduce it to a level I really wanted. I am realistic, I know we shed hairs on a daily basis. But I felt tea rinsing would do a better job, so I moved to Black Tea.
I was hesitant with Black tea at first. Most reviews say it leaves the hair hard, can affect and even mimic protein, and darkens the hair. Now for someone who has medium to thick strands and has to incorporate protein every week to every other week, I was not sure I wanted to try it. But as Lady Luck had to have her way, I ran out of Green tea one day and had a full box of Black tea my nana gave me. So I used it and I really liked it the best so far. It left my hair with the same hardness as Green tea, as well as the same benefits as Green tea but with even less shedding and reduced breakage. Black tea is also allowing me to use less protein weekly so I can focus more on moisture. I also noticed my brownish-red hairs turning red now. I would be cautious about recommending Black tea as a rinse to those who develop protein overload quickly.
I add other teas to my rinses.
-Chamomile is supposed to be conditioning. Since using it, I can’t say my hair feels more “conditioned” , but I’ve noticed my hair is softer for 5 of 7 days between washed instead of the normal 3.
-Burdock is supposed to be good for the scalp. My scalp itches much less since using it.
-Nettle is supposed to be softening to the hair. It makes me shed more, so I don’t use it.
-Moringa is wonderful!!!! It was the best tea rinse I ever had. Even my buns looked better that week. It’s jus too expensive, so I save that for special occasions.
-Horsetail is good because it has silica, a mineral the hair needs. Mostly internally, but I noticed it has added strength.
-Peppermint tea is one I definitely want to try, but mint and a sensitive scalp need to be proceeded with caution.
I hope to find if more teas will benefit me in the future. I also enjoy hearing what teas others are using. Let me know how they are working for you.
One Day, It Will Happen