Friday, June 13, 2008


The other day, I met another mom and her kiddos for a playdate. Three months ago, three of those kids were adopted from Ethiopia. She has three biological kids as well, just like us. So, she was asking me about black hair care.
(For the sake of simplicity, I'm going to be referring to African-American and Caucasian as "black" and "white". I'm not referring to color of hair.)
Black and white hair, appropriately, are exactly opposite in their needs. "White" hair gets greasy over time, black hair gets dry over time. I only wash Maya's hair once a week and with conditioner only. I also moisturize her hair every 2-3 days, generally just with a 1/2 and 1/2 mixture of olive oil and water in a spray bottle. Because her hair has never been permed (aka straightened), the water just makes her locks look better, not frizzy.
The same is true for skincare. In the winter, I have a very hard time keeping Daniel "black"- his legs get grey from being so dry, even hours after lathering him down with lotion. If they don't put on lotion after bathing, they will look like little grey kids an hour later.
As far as hair styling, I highly recommend making room for that in the budget. lol (I'm a DIYer for a lot of things, but I don't have the hours to dedicate to my lack of skill.)


Lee said...

Ginger - we just had three wonderful little boys from the African Children's Choir stay with us and they each had a little tub of vaseline - was that for their skin? Would coconut oil be good for moisturizing black skin as well? I ask because I would love to adopt from Africa one day so I am in "information gathering" mode!! :)

Ginger said...

Yes, that was for their skin and yes, coconut oil would be much better. I've been thinking about using coconut oil instead of lotion, but I need to buy the cheaper stuff. Not using my precious virgin coconut oil for skin. ;)

Anonymous said...

I was just going to suggest coconut oil! I use it (I'm white), as my skin gets very dry and itchy in the winter. It is a FABULOUS moisturizer! I use it right after a bath. I love it!


Donna said...

I feel honored to have been "mentioned" in one of your blog entries, Ginger. :-)
See you Monday!

Carletta said...

Ginger, you may want to try Eucerine moisturizing cream for their skin. It works like a charm on my dd. Regular lotion just seems to disappear after 5 minutes.

Let me know if you ever need any hair tips. A book I love about caring for black hair is, "It's All Good Hair."

There's also a yahoo group about hair for adoptive moms. You may be aware of it. If not I will track down the info for you.

Ginger said...


But doesn't Eucerin contain petroleum or mineral oil? I'm thinking that's why I haven't bought it.
I've read that book and I'm a part of that yahoo group. :D
There's another book that I bought, I liked it so well, "No Lye". Has some good hairdo pics.

aka BNR said...

Coconut oil is also great for black hair. My grandmother would make coconut oil everyother month for us and it made our hair very long and healthy.

The Herd said...

Ginger--I have some coconut oil to donate to the cause--so when can I drop it by with your daughter book too?