My Updated Scalp and Hair Care Routine 2021 – Type 1, Low Porosity, Virgin Hair

It has been almost year since I last posted my scalp and hair care routine, I thought it was about time to do an update since it has changed a bit since then!

First things first, my hair is VIRGIN again! No more annoying dry, bleached ends. Alongside healthier ends, I find with my current routine, my scalp is less irritated, and my hair surprisingly stays moisturized and rarely feels dry. The best part is, this routine is more simple!

About my Scalp and Hair:

  • Type 1 – pretty straight hair, but I’m not sure the specifics. Am I 1a, 1b, or 1c?
  • Medium strands.
  • Low porosity.
  • Scalp is traditionally oily, I like washing my hair every other day. I don’t like using hair powder and dry shampoo as it causes buildup and irritates my scalp with longterm use.
  • Hair typically gets dry as days pass, but lately it’s been staying moistured (maybe because of the warmer weather).
  • No more bleached ends, they are finally healthy and rarely experience breakage.

My Scalp and Hair Care Routine

With wet hair, I lather the shampoo bar and focus the application on my scalp and roots, and just repeat this process until my entire scalp is sufficiently covered. I then massage my scalp for a minute to make sure the shampoo has a chance to do it’s thing to break down the oils and because it feels good to give my scalp a light massage. After that I rinse my hair then move on to either a pyrithione zinc (PZ) shampoo or conditioner.

1-2x a week, I will use a PZ shampoo to treat my scalp. Last year I used the Innate Life Scalp Treatment, but I found it was starting to feel a bit uncomfortable on my scalp, and it was just a pain to have to shampoo my hair 3 times. The PZ shampoo is a lot easier to use and has proven to be very effective! I used to use Head & Shoulders for years until I threw my scalp into turmoil when I started bleaching and dying my hair. My current go-to PZ shampoo is AG Hair Control Anti-Dandruff Shampoo with 2% PZ. I find this to be non-drying and it is also pH balanced for the scalp. After shampooing, I massage around two pumps on my scalp and I find this enough since the cuticles are now lifted and the mileage is just better after a first wash. After making sure my entire scalp is sufficiently covered in the treatment, I massage my scalp again for a bit and leave it in for a few minutes while I do my body care, then rinse.

Once shampoo and/or PZ treatment step is complete, I finish off my hair wash with Upfront Cosmetics Conditioner Bar. I wet it and massage the bar first to get the lather going, then I massage the bar directly on my hair. I keep doing this until I feel like my hair is sufficiently coated in conditioner and I can easily run my fingers through. If I didn’t use a PZ shampoo that day, I would wrap my hair in a bun and do my body care routine. Otherwise I would just rinse it out after.

After showering, I ring out my hair and wrap it in a hair towel (gift). I find this has been the best way to remove as much water as possible from my hair and I find it shortens the amount of time I need to blow-dry.

Once I let my hair out of the towel, I apply a heat protectant since I don’t like airy-drying my hair that much. Note, I have air-dried my hair for years prior and I have not seen a signficant difference in the quality of scalp and hair. My current go-to heat protectant is IT 12-In-One Amazing Leave-In Treatment (gift). I really like the scent of it, it reminds of Nerds candy and it makes my hair feel really soft and not weighed down. I spray only the mid shaft to ends of my hair and lightly run my fingers through, making sure it’s well coated. Sometimes I also apply a moisturizing spray on my scalp, I’m currently using the Innate Life Neroli Hair Primer. While I do like the list of moisturizing ingredients in the formula and that it does not weigh down my hair, I really dislike the scent – smells like Bermagot and Citrus.

After I apply the heat protectant and hair primer, I then begin drying my scalp with hot air, holding the blow dryer at a distance. Because I removed a lot of the water, my hair dries pretty quickly despite it being long. I usually focus on making sure my scalp is dry and I just lightly dry my hair strands. Once I finish drying my hair, I apply Innate Life Rose Elixir Hair Oil. This is the only oil serum I have ever liked for my hair and I have repurchased it a few times since I first tried it.

Last step, I brush my hair with the Tek Oval brush. I like the rounded ends because it’s gentle on my scalp. I start at the ends and work my way up to prevent extra hair fall. Sometimes I take an extra amount of time to massage my scalp.

That is pretty much it for my go-to scalp and hair care routine. Here are some extra steps I’d do if my hair is feeling dry.

I still like having the Briogeo Rosarco Milk Leave-In Conditioner on hand because it’s a light mist that I can use on dry hair, and I think it would be useful come the summer months when I’m outside more and my hair is more susceptible to dryness from sun exposure.

I also occasionally incorporate hair masking in my scalp and hair care routine. Back in the winter, I tried the Capillary Schedule so I was masking on every wash, rotating 3 types of hair masks. I found it very helpful at keeping my hair moisturized, to the point that I didn’t need a hair protectant when drying my hair. Now that it’s warmer, I just reach for a mask once a month because I have not really been experiencing an oily scalp and dry hair when I do not wash on my normal schedule.


Products I Use for my Scalp and Hair Care Routine

Upfront Cosmetics Shampoo and Conditioner Bar
https://upfrontcosmetics.ca/collections/haircare-1

AG Hair Control Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
https://rstyle.me/+Z1gntCIyGJvy7u1DxQhrcw *

The Body Shop Hair Towel – it was part of a gift box I got for my birthday, but there’s a really cute strawberry one they sell
https://rstyle.me/+d9yGodOwbpdjUdUxYJyEDQ *

The Innate Life Neroli Hair Primer
https://theinnatelife.com/collections/scalp-treatments/products/test

It 12-in-One Amazing Leave-In Treatment *
https://rstyle.me/+D3NjVevLqVC4y0037o4aRQ *

The Innate Life Rose Hair Elixir
https://theinnatelife.com/products/rose-hair-elixir

TEK Wooden Oval Brush
https://rstyle.me/+JdKmryfn92r4Z_wzQAWy7w *

Briogeo Rosarco Milk Leave-In Conditioner
https://rstyle.me/+GQWRiIrQ1Lpeu-JuakpVlA *

The Hair Routine Moisture Treatment
https://www.thehairroutine.com/products/moisture-treatment

*Affiliate links. If you use one of these links to make a purchase, I earn a small commission. Thank you so much if you decide to use them!

As always, I hope you find content like this helpful and informative!

xo, M


Related Content to my Scalp and Hair Routine

Scalp and Hair Care Routine 2020
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KR-ALeOkKrk

Capillary Schedule
https://www.instagram.com/p/CKPNFWGL19O/?igshid=4dw9qyhomgr6
https://www.instagram.com/reel/CMDFVcAn4gB/?igshid=1fpn0za0mu178

REVIEW: The Innate Life Small Complete Hair Care Bundle

Inspired to take care of my scalp more + the desire to try something new, I purchased Toronto-based brand Innate Life products and had to share my thoughts on their products!

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I’ve strayed away from Green Beauty marketing-based companies when it comes to skincare, but when it comes to my hair I find that’s when these types of products benefit me the most! I decided to purchase their Small Complete Hair Care Bundle with the small sizes of the following products:

  • Scalp Treatment for Problematic Scalp
  • Herbal Hair Mask
  • Rose Hair Elixir

As I just mentioned, the Innate Life is a Toronto-based Canadian brand that takes an ayurvedic approach to hair care! Every product contains their signature blend of the following ayurvedic herbs, all supposed to promote either hair growth and overall scalp health:

  • Bhringaraj
  • Brahmi
  • Amla
  • Tulsi
  • Neem

My personal opinion: I do believe traditional medicines serve a purpose and have some promise since it’s based off of thousands of years of trial and error, which is why I occasionally like using these kinds of products. It is consistent long-term use for potentially long term gain, and sometimes it’s hard for them to compete with new Western medicine, especially when you’re living a modern lifestyle of different  (and more often than not, a lot more) stresses (environment, food, etc.).

The Innate Life Small Complete Hair Care Bundle with tax cost $55.53 USD / $76.19 CAD have used this bundle for a couple of months now, so I am ready to share my thoughts!


Scalp Treatment for Problematic Scalp

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Hair growth starts at the root. The Scalp Treatment is the ultimate product for hair growth because it nourishes and stimulates the scalp. It’s packed with natural goodness that will benefit your scalp and hair in ways you never thought possible! Used a couple times a week, The Scalp Treatment will provide intense hydration and repair the scalp for ultimate growth. It’s relaxing herbal scent makes it an essential part of any self-care day.

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AMOUNT: 2oz
INDIVIDUAL PRICE: $20 USD

Coconut Oil as the main oil is also great for hair health, for it is able to penetrate the hair shafts, create a water-blocking layer, and prevent protein loss. The ayurvedic and other plant extracts in the list are shown in herbal medicine to have soothing properties – definitely a must when applying potent essential oils on the scalp and trying to lower irritation from buildup. The essential oils listed, particularly Rosemary Oil, has a study on how it contributed to hair growth (Rosemary Oil was compared to be just as effective as Minoxidil (key active in Rogaine) but without irritation!). Pair all of these ingredients with the act of scalp massaging, it sounds like this is a go-to product for literally getting your head in the game of scalp health.

I’ll leave the following links below if you’re interested in the read. PLEASE NOTE: Just because some studies were done, doesn’t mean that it’s 100% safe and proven to be used in such a manner. Only until your country’s governing body passes ingredients (in this case, essential oils) as a drug for use in such a manner (in specific concentrations), these are just the beginning of studies and any use otherwise is anecdotal.

Human studies:

2015 Rosemary oil vs minoxidil 2% for the treatment of androgenetic alopecia: a randomized comparative trial

Standardized Scalp Massage Results in Increased Hair Thickness by Inducing Stretching Forces to Dermal Papilla Cells in the Subcutaneous Tissue

In vitro & in vivo:
Effect of mineral oil, sunflower oil, and coconut oil on prevention of hair damage.

Animal studies:

2016 Study Hair Growth-Promoting Effects of Lavender Oil in C57BL/6 Mice

Peppermint Oil Promotes Hair Growth without Toxic signs

USAGE: 2 hours before I planned on washing my hair, every wash. My scalp was quite irritated at the time, and I confirmed with Innate Life that I was able to use this every wash (for me that’s every 2-3 days).

SCENT: Light herbal scent, the Peppermint Oil is the most noticeable scent.

TEXTURE: Runny, make sure to take little amounts rather than a lot in one go.

APPLICATION: Parted my hair in sections, and massaged thin layers directly on the scalp. After my entire scalp area was covered, I massaged it for 3-5 minutes.

FEEL: While massaging, I felt my scalp heating up. Not in an irritating way, moreso that there was a lot of blood circulation gong on. This feeling lasts from 30 minutes to an hour.

WASH: Need to shampoo twice to make sure all the oils from my hair are out.

OVERALL THOUGHTS ON THE SCALP TREATMENT FOR PROBLEMATIC SCALP

PROS:

  • My scalp became less itchy; Usually it gets itchy by the 2nd day, and I haven’t experienced that since using this treatment
  • In combination with the shampoo and conditioner I am using (see Haircare Haul), I’ve been told my hair looks fuller at the front
  • I’ve noticed baby hairs that I usually don’t see finally sit on my head differently and look more visible (they already existed, the photo does not show brand new growth)
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CONS:

  • Not a fan of the clear, jar packaging. It is great that it’s in glass, the essential oils act as a natural preservative, and I can keep it in a dark cabinet, but it should be in an opaque package with a small dispenser to further prevent any ingredient degradation.

Overall I have seen benefits while using the Innate Life Scalp Treatment. My scalp feels less irritated, baby hairs are coming out to play, and it is not difficult to wash out.


Herbal Hair Mask

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Dry and damaged hair rejoice! The Herbal Hair Mask is the answer to your prayers. This intensive once-a-week hair mask has the power to naturally transform hair into a silky dream. Formulated with over 15 plant-based botanicals, The Herbal Hair Mask keeps hair soft, silky, and shiny. Natural detanglers leave strands tangle-free and manageable. This Mask also reverses damage caused by heat tools and hair dyes. For sad-looking locks, The Herbal Mask is sure to cheer them up!

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AMOUNT: 4oz

INDIVIDUAL PRICE: $25 USD

USAGE: 2 hours before I planned on washing my hair, once a week alongside the Scalp Treatment on dry hair. I tried damp and after-conditioning as well; I did not notice a difference between the application methods, so I stuck with the pre-wash.

SCENT: Citrusy Lavender. Definitely took a handful of whiffs while applying it!

TEXTURE: Light cream.

APPLICATION: Massaged product in from the mid-length to ends on dry hair, making sure it was properly coated.

FEEL: Like a light oil, not as overwhelming as Coconut Oil on its own.

WASH: Rinses out pretty easily without using shampoo at the ends.

OVERALL THOUGHTS OF THE HERBAL HAIR MASK

PROS:

  • Smells divine – I definitely enjoyed this while applying.

CONS:

  • Hair feels the same, nothing crazy different
  • I get similar results from just leaving conditioner in my hair for a couple of minutes

Overall this was my least favourite product out of the 3. Not just the Innate Life Herbal Hair Mask, but I find conditioning masks in general don’t do much for my hair. Maybe my hair is less damaged than I thought? If you’re looking for a light hair mask, still consider this one – lots of other users have benefitted from this hair mask!


Rose Hair Elixir

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The Rose Hair Elixir is the Holy Grail product of hair care. Formulated with over 15 organic oils, this Elixir is potent and serves a number of purposes. It can be used daily or whenever your hair needs a quick pick me up. It can be used on dry hair to nourish split ends, tame frizzy hair, repair damaged hair and add shine. This little bottle does it all! It even works as a heat protectant before styling or on damp hair as a leave-in treatment. If that’s not enough for you, it’s intoxicating rose smell will have you coming back for more.

AMOUNT: 20ml

INDIVIDUAL PRICE: $15 USD

USAGE: 2 times a day, morning and night before brushing my hair.

SCENT: Starts off smelling like rose. It isn’t overwhelming, but I definitely liked sniffing my hair throughout the day. After a few hours the scent wears off and your ends smell like a mix of oils.

TEXTURE: Similar to a silicone-based hair serum, but feels like an oil, if that makes sense…

APPLICATION: Apply 4 drops to my mid-length to ends, more of a focus on the ends.

FEEL: Does not weigh down my hair and does not leave an oily look.

OVERALL THOUGHTS ON THE ROSE HAIR ELIXIR

PROS:

  • First oil-based hair serum that performs well
  • Ends feel very soft and healthy
  • Lovely, subtle scent of rose

CONS:

  • Another deduction for packaging; Clear bottle and the dropper doesn’t even reach the bottom, you’d have to poor out the oil when you’re near the end

Overall this is my favourite oil-based hair serum I have tried to date. I personally preferred silicone-based hair serums because I saw better results, but I’m happy to have discovered the lovely formula that is the Innate Life Rose Hair Elixir.


FINAL THOUGHTS

OVERALL PROS:

  • All products have very promising ingredients that have potential to contribute to scalp and hair health, particularly Coconut Oil, Amla, and Rosemary Oil
  • Fairly affordable price and lasts fairly long considering I have long hair
  • Quick delivery once ordered – being in Toronto in particular it takes 3-5 business days
  • Saving $10 when buying the bundle as opposed to the individual products
  • The Scalp Treatment in particular was the catalyst for paying more attention to my scalp, leading down the endless hole that is haircare

OVERALL CONS:

  • The packaging on the Scalp Treatment and Rose Hair Elixir needs to be updated for better function and product preservation
  • Just like other brands, I am not a fan of the scare-tactics type of marketing; They use the “no chemicals” and “non-toxic” approach to their products. If they changed their marketing to show the potential plant power going on in their products and promote these as beneficial chemicals, they could definitely gain more of a following and trust with their brand

OVERALL IN-BETWEEN FEELS:

  •  I’m not sure if they mean “made from scratch” from a home setting or in a lab. Not to say it is a bad thing, it is to point out general caution to anyone looking at their products. They are all wash-off anyways and I haven’t experienced any negative side effects.
  • Scalp Treatment and Herbal Hair Mask can be left on overnight, but I didn’t notice much of a difference than if I were to just keep it in for 2 hours

The Small Bundle is a great introductory purchase for the Innate Life products. On top of the sensorial experience from each product, 2/3 products actually delivered for my hair type and have played an essential role in gaining and maintaining healthy scalp and hair. It was easy to consistently use these products, especially knowing that they wouldn’t run out so fast.

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I already repurchased their Long Hair Bundle which contains full sizes of the Scalp Treatment (Problematic Scalp) and the Rose Hair Elixir. They’re definitely part of the reason I’ve been loving my hair state lately and will continue using them and supporting a Canadian brand!

Use “INNATE15MICH” * to get 15% off your first purchase:
http://www.theinnatelife.co/discount/INNATE15MICH *

This is an affiliate code and link. If you use this link to make a purchase, I earn a small commission. Thank you so much if decide to use it! If you feel uncomfortable, feel free to google a new link.

Have you tried these Innate Life products? They also have a shampoo and conditioner, let me know what you think about them in the comments if you’ve tried!

xo, M

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