Ethnic hair has been proven to be the driest hair type (when compared to Caucasian, Asian and Hispanic hair) so keeping moisture levels high to avoid breakage is key for not only retaining length to grow long hair, but to simply have healthy hair. The only way to keep your hair properly moisturized is understanding which ingredients best promote moisture.
Water: Known as the “ultimate moisturizer” because the job of all moisturizers is to increase or maintain water levels in the hair. Water alone, therefore, is a powerful moisturizer but must be sealed into hair strands with an oil to prevent it from escaping into the environment. This process is commonly referred to as moisturizing and sealing.
Vegetable Glycerin: An extremely powerful humectant, vegetable glycerin has the ability to attract and hold water from its surrounding environment. For your hair, this is a very attractive property although it can cause hair frizzing in extremely high humidity areas. Vegetable glycerin is a colorless, odorless liquid that is produced from plant oils through an extraction process known as hydrolysis.
Panthenol: Also known as B5. Women often shy away from this ingredient because the -ol ending makes them think of it as an alcohol which we’ve been trained to view as bad. When panthenol is applied to the hair, it give the hair shine and provides it with moisture. Panthenol is a humectant, emoillent, and mositurizer.
Silk Keratin: Keratin is an important structural component of hair and nails. Silk proteins such as silk keratin can smoothe the hair and help to repair brittle hair.
Aloe Vera: Aloe vera helps with dry, itchy scalp. It penetrates the hair and scalp easily. Aloe vera has the ability to provide proper moisture and hydration for your hair. It also maintains the ph level of the hair and scalp. Aloe vera can be purchase in liquid or gel form.
These are what I think are the five best moisturizing ingredients for hair. There maybe one particular moisturizer that works for your hair, or you may find that all of them work for you. Keeping your hair adequately moisturized can help prevent damage to your hair, help you retain length, and helps your improve the look of your hairstyle. Healthy hair is good looking hair!