How to switch from the left images to the right image without overdrafting the bank account and damaging the scalp with countless stripping cosmetics? Following my years long struggle with my afro hair I have finally found efficient solutions.

Afro courtAfroNormal

I use plants blends. My home made shampoos are made of 3 agents aiming at :

  • washing the dirt
  • softening the hair
  • treating the scalp

In order to clean the hair, I have tested various products that contain saponins, mainly plants :

  • Soapnut
  • Shikakai
  • Jujube tree leaves
  • Soapwort
  • Rhassoul
  • Panama bark
  • Climbing ivy leaves

Soapnuts must be soaked in water to get the soap. It is also available as a powder sometimes called Aritha or Reetha. They are usually sold in organic shops. 1 kg bag of seeds costs 9 to 14€. Same thing for the Panama bark. It must be soaked in water.

Shikakai is milder than soapnut. It is available as a powder. Shikakai and aritha powders can often be found in indian shops, a box costs less than 2€.

Jujube tree leaves powder foams just like standard shampoo does. It is sometimes called Sidr. It can be found in oriental shops because it is a component of Henna.

Soapwort leaves produce more foam than the other products. The leaves must be soaked in water to extract the soap. It dries the hair allittle bit. It contains so much soap that it can be used to wash the dishes and the clothes, just like soapnut.

Rhassoul is the mildest. It dries the hair less than the other products.

As incredible as it may sound, climbing ivy leaves are full of soap. all you need is to cut them in little pieces and let them boil for ten minutes. It makes a dark liquid that makes a lot of foam. It must be kept in the  frigde.


In order to soften the hair we can use an acid plant, like for instance lemon or hibiscus flowers which are usually called bissap.

lemon bissap
Lemon Bissap

All we have to do is to add lemon juice or bissap decoction to the preparation. We can also put them in a blender with water

If a preparation is too acid then it is likely to eat away the hair protein. So it's better to use just a little bit and to not use them with shikakai which is the most acid washing powder.

One day I tried to replace the lemon with white vinegar. I will never do it again. It was a disaster.

Caution ! If your hair is conditioned then don't use these plants. It is already damaged by the conditioner therefore the acid is likely to finish the destruction job.


In order to treat the scalp, I have tested a lot of things like mustard seeds or ginger. These fruits purify the scalp and stimulate the blood flow.

Brown, black or yellow mustard seeds are easy to find in exotic products shops. It contains sulfur. Sulfur is very important for the body's cells, for the nails and the hair. As mustard is rather strong, it is better not to blend it with lemon.

I have also tried some powders like amla or kapoor kachli. Amla is a bitter and acid fruit so it can play the same role as lemon. kapoor kachli is a variety of ginger. Their powder can usually be purchased in indian shops.

Powder shampoo

The formula can be customized according to one's inspiration. For instance :

  • In a bowl put 1 to 3 teaspoon of washing powders (shikakai, aritha, sidr, rhassoul)

  • Add a teaspoon of kapoor kachli powder

  • Add a teaspoon of amla powder

  • Add water

  • Stir well

  • filter

  • Apply the mixture straight on dry hair, massaging the scalp

  • Rinse briefly

You can also use a small cotton bag to avoid the filtering step. Put the powders in a cotton bag and let it infuse in water.

I have never made a paste with the washing powders like it is advised in the instructions for use. They contain saponins. I think that too much soap is likely to damage the hair.

Fruit shampoo

The fruits are a little bit more complicated to use. For instance :

  • In a bowl put 1 to 3 teaspoon of washing powders (aritha, sidr, rhassoul)

  • In a blender put a piece of fresh ginger, a peeled lemon and water

  • Pour the mixed products in the bowl

  • Stir well

  • filter

  • Apply the mixture straight on dry hair, massaging the scalp

  • Rinse briefly

It is of course possible to blend powders, fruits and decoctions as one wishes.

Beware, never ever put the washing plants in a blender. It makes a foam so thick that it is impossible to filter the blend.

Seed shampoo

The formula can be customized according to one's inspiration. For instance :

  • In a bowl put 1 to 3 teaspoon of washing powders (shikakai, aritha, sidr)

  • Crush 1 spoon of mustard seeds in a mortar with a little bot of water

  • Pour the mustard in the bowl

  • Add water

  • Stir well

  • filter

  • Apply the mixture straight on dry hair, massaging the scalp

  • Rinse briefly

Extra moisturing

We usually wash our hair with industrial shampoos, filled with chemicals stuff that "soften" the hair. While rinsing it, the hair seems silky to our fingers. But when it's combing time, we cry because there are locks everywhere.

Chemical shampoos create a pleasant illusion while ruining the hair. When I was using them I used to comb only once a week, only after the rinsing, when the hair was still wet. It was long, tedious, painful, it would last for a whole hour. I would not even try to do my hair the other days. One cannot afford such a waste of time when living an active life in big city.

If you start to use these natural products, you may be surprised at first. The hair seems rough at rinsing time. but the comb runs smoothly. Since I use these products, I comb it every day, it's easy, it only lasts for 3 minutes. So don't be fooled if the illusion of "softness" disappears when you switch for the natural products.

In order to keep the soft touch, you can add a few drops of oil to the mixture. All you have to do is to crush mustard seeds with water in a blender, just like the lemon and the ginger. It is an emulsifier therefore the oil blends completely in the preparation.

By reading this article you may say that you are Caucasian and therefore it is not about you at all. I don't agree. Sometimes in public transport, I see people with straw-like rough light brownish hair. I feel that as children these people were platinum blonde with soft hair. Marketed shampoo is a poison. The hair becomes dry and harder under the blow of chemical attacks. It loses it's luster and flexibility over time. The effect of industrial shampoos is disastrous on the hair of black people and I think that it is also significant for white people.

I'll go further in my hair investigations. My goal is not to become the greatest beauty queen ever. I was born with black, thick, curly hair. Why has it become frizzy, dry, thin and brown? Scientists say that this is normal. Babies lose their pretty birth hair to have ugly adults one, especially black people.

When I saw the pictures of Blue Ivy Carter, the daughter of Beyoncé and Jay-Z, it sadly reminded me of my own situation. She also had black curly hair at birth, today it is afro and dry. If the hair becomes a little thicker by growing up, that's ok. But what occurs here is definitely a mutation. Chinese and Indians have approximately the same texture of hair from birth to death. Why do those of black people change so radically?

My real goal is to get my birth hair back. By stopping to use industrial chemical shampoos, I managed to get closer to the goal. I want to get my birth hair back because I increasingly find it hard to believe what religience says. I need to prove to myself that I'm not dreaming, indeed there's something wrong in our so-called modern world.

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