re-tightening day recap: baking soda wash, ACV rinse, black tea rinse

Last re-ti, I washed my hair with baking soda, followed by an ACV rinse (I believe before the baking soda I may have used shampoo too… I don’t remember). I do remember my hair feeling and looking great after that reti, so I decided to try it again as a pre-retightening routine.

Here’s what I did yesterday morning:

  • Shampoo: 1 TBSP baking soda added to 1 Cup of Water and a lil bit of Shampoo (in this instance DreadHead Shampoo)
  • Rinse: 2 TBSP ACV with 2 Cups of Warm Water… let sit for a few minutes… and then apply 1.5 cups of Black Tea, diluted with 1/2 Cup Water… let sit for a few more minutes.
  • Final Rinse: Cold Water
  • Moisturize: I let my hair air-dry for a few hours and then spritzed lightly with some Greg’s juice.


Nothing magical happened right away. But after the reti my hair felt pleasantly light and soft. My hair is usually light and fluffy after a reti but the softness was a nice bonus. However,  to avoid dry scalp from the baking soda, I may need to rub some light oil directly on it after my hair dries.


Black Tea Rinse
The Black Tea rinse definitely cut the ACV smell. There was no trace of the ACV smell left over at all! So far, my hair doesn’t seem any dark or “healthier” as a result of the black tea rinse. I know it takes time so I’ll continue to use it each wash for a few weeks and see what happens. EDITED TO ADD (9/24): Actually the black tea has enriched the color of my hair. It took a few days for me to notice. I did another black tea rinse the wash after this one. 

The night before, I boiled 4 tea bags in 5-6 cups of water. Then read blogs about how tea makes your hair hard, and ended up using less than half of the brew, diluted with water. I’ll continue to play around with the brew until I get it just right for my hair.

ACV Rinse
I believe the ACV rinse may be the culprit of my “browning” hair. Before yesterday, it has been 6 weeks since my last ACV rinse. Before then, I don’t remember how regularly I’ve done the rinse… maybe every 2-3 weeks? Likely less than that… the point is, I’ve done a few of them this year.

The acidic properties of ACV, in light of the benefits it provides, can lighten and make your hair drier over time. I read a blog recently that said it could be contributing to the frizz… Going forward, will limit ACV and Baking Soda Washes to no more than every 6-8 weeks.

Remember how last time took about 10 hours? Today Mrs. CGS (Sisterlock Consultant #2) only took 5 hours. I was just getting comfortable thinking I was in for a long haul. Seems like she has “learned” my hair and 6 weeks is a good enough time for me to come in for a re-ti for her. Unfortunately, every 6 weeks will stretch my budget since she costs more, so I’m pushing my next re-ti to 7 weeks.




my hair today with some notes

A bit dry. It’s crystal clear the difference in size between my front locs and the ones in the crown of my head. You can kind of tell from these pics how brown my hair is/is getting. Finally, it is indeed growing. It seems to be growing “down” now, instead of “out.”





low-cost natural hair treatment: black tea hair rinse

I want to try something new on my hair >> to cover the “brown” in my hair without the hassles of the black rinses I love so much (but am trying to stay away from for now).   There has to be something I could do to enrich my hair without unraveling my sisterlocks, right?

I took to internet/blog stalking and read up about black tea and coffee rinses, which can help in darkening and strengthening (reducing shedding) hair. Low cost, low risk… doesn’t hurt to give it a try.

Here’s what I plan to try before my next re-tightening:

* brew 3-4 tea bags in 4-5 cups of water
* spray over my hair after  rinsing out shampoo and leave on for 10-15 minutes (or whenever I finish washing up in the shower)
* rinse with cold water
* very light oil to the scalp/hair to combat any dryness (some folks say the tea stiffens their hair)

Any one try black tea rinses? Do you recommend a particular brand or application method?