After months of researching I finally settled on a hair steamer. I'd heard so much about all the different types of steamers and decided to purchase a salon quality stand up steamer instead of a table top. Since my salon is in home, it thought it best to have one that can be rolled around in the event I may need to use it in my bedroom as well. One of my sweet Facebook supporters sent a link to my page a few weeks back recommending the steamer shown above. At the time, I wasn't ready to purchase one but visited the site on e-bay, read the reviews, and pretty much settled on purchasing it but still continued shopping around for other styles and brands. I finalized my decision when I returned to the e-bay store to find the steamer on sale for $10 less then it was originally priced including shipping. I luv catching deals!
For those who are new to steam treatments, here is a list of benefits of consistently having the hair steamed:
1. Up to 5x added moisture, than using a hooded or heat dryer
2. Increased Shine
3. More manageable new growth
4. Softer feeling hair
5. Lessens shedding/breaking hair
6. Decrease in dandruff cause by dry scalp
7. Hair will be easier to detangle
If your hair is dry or damaged, you can use the hair steamer twice a week to maintain a healthy moisture level in your hair. There are some who say the best way to steam treat is with a steam cap on the hair after your conditioner of choice has been added. From day one I knew not to use a cap because to me it's counter productive. If one wears a cap during the treatment, steam vapors won't penetrate and open the cuticle. You want the conditioner to absorb into the hair shaft and to me wearing a cap lessens the ability for that to happen.
I decided to challenge the steam treatment by doing it immediately following a henna treatment. Henna tends to dry my hair out and it takes a day or so for my hair to get back to it's normal moisture level. I figured why not henna first then do the steam treatment. If my hair will benefit like the list above claims to have on hair after a henna treatment then I know it was definitely a wise investment. In the two photographs above I'd just rinsed henna from my hair. My curls where elongated (a temporary result of henna due to the weight of the paste on my hair), my hair was extremely dry and dull looking, and I still had a little henna in my hair.
I used this instant conditioner to help remove the remainder of henna paste I'd had in my hair prior to applying the deep conditioning treatment.
So on with the DC using the above product. At times, I use this as a styler instead of a DC because it gives my hair a slight hold and locks in moisture for my wash n'go's. This time I decided to use it as intended as a base for the steam treatment. I didn't pack it on, I used it lightly concentrating on the ends of my hair. I was crossing my fingers in hopes my curls would pop back...
One thing I didn't realize was this thing gets HOT! I don't know why I thought it wouldn't after all it is steam, steam causes burns too. This steamer has an up to 60 minute timer and 2 settings 400 and 750 watt. I initially set it for 20 minutes, after about 5 minutes I had to change it to the 400 watt setting and still used my microfiber towel to cover my forehead at times. For the most part however, it was comfortable once I lowered the wattage. Another thing I noticed and didn't care for was that where hood is, water collects in a small tray around the rim...when it fills up, it leaks. I'll be reading over my instructions again to see if I might have missed something during assembly.
This photo was taken right after coming from underneath the steamer prior to rinsing the conditioner. I was elated to see the elasticity in my curls return, how soft my hair felt, and how it only required 20 minutes of my time. When using my hooded dryer after a henna treatment I would usually stay under at least 45 minutes to ensure the moisture level was restored to my hair and it never felt as soft as it did from the steamer.
...and voilà ...once my cool rinsed all of the conditioner from my hair, curls and moisture were restored as well as added shine and my hair was soft as butter, even after the conditioner was rinsed. I don't have dry scalp nor dandruff issues so I can't provide feedback on how effective it is just yet. I 'll have to wait on my next client who schedules a treatment to help alleviate dry scalp or dandruff to really tell if it's beneficial. I also noticed my hair was much easier to part and detangle. Shea Moisture Deep Treatment Masque doesn't have any detangling properties, at least not on my hair which is why I prefer it as a styler. One of the main properties I look for a conditioner to provide my hair is the ability to detangle my hair with ease. Moving forward, I'll be using SMDTM as it were intended now I have a steamer.
Let's take a look at the results:
It's obvious my hair has tons of shine and it even looks more full...take a look at the close ups as well and compare...you can't miss it. I'm hooked!!
My favorite part...my weekly styling. I decided to continue with another protective for the next week or so and jazzed it up this time adding gold ribbon I'd purchased from Michael's crafts for .25 cents for the spool on clearance. No tutorial on this one as it is very similar to the previous weeks large cornrow protective style I wore. This time, I returned to my old faithful Kinky Curly curling custard for my roots and used Shea Moisture Curling Souffle` on my lengths. I really love the way the souffle` kept my hair so moist without me needing to add more product or even water for that matter even after I took it down and wore a braid/twist out my hair was moist...I'm liking it more now as I'm learing how to use it to suit my hairs needs.