No oil routine??


New Member
Hello ladies!

Is anyone here on the no oil routine (particularly naturals)? I find more and more that after conditoner washing and applying oild based products (oil listed in the 1st 5 ingredients) that my hair dries very hard and crunchy. It just can't seem to stay moisturized. It's very frustrating!

I'm thinking about doing a no oil routine. Can someone help me get a routine together? Are butters (shea, avocado, mango) considered oils? How often do I need to CW? I plan on trying this for at least 2 weeks. So please help! Thanks
Not natural...but I use oil VERY rarely.

have you considered just leaving some conditioner (like an a actual conditioner, not a leave in} in? I think something like Elucence left in on natural hair would be wonderful for retaining moisture.
I'm a natural on the no-oil (or limited oil) routine and I have mostly 4A with patches of 3C hair. Come to think of it, my hair sounds exactly like yours -- dense, but fine, OS shape.

I usually conditioner wash with either Suave Milk & Honey or Citrus Smoothie (occassionally Tropical Coconut) and use one of said conditioners as a leave-in or I use the Elucence conditioner as a leave-in. I think all of these have oils, but the amounts are so small that it's not a problem.

I conditioner wash and detangle daily and deep condition once a week (my hair is color-treated).

I never use plain old oils directly on my hair and it's been a lot softer and more moisturized since then.
I will take your suggestions and try leaving conditioner on my hair after washing.
And maybe some diluted in a spray bottle for when my hair feels dry??
my hair is a 4a/b and Ihave a tendency to get crunchy hair if i use too much oil also. I do leave diluted conditioner in my hair and it helps a lot
I use serums only. If you have a good deep conditioner and a good leave in you won't need to put any oil in your hair.
Very feasible.
Biosilk Silk Therepy is the serum I use. It's expensive, but it lasts forever. I've had the same bottle since December!
what is the 'no oil' routine? This is an old thread that reappeared and I've never heard of this before. What is so bad about oil on natural hair?
My hair tends to break with oils as well.. I'll comb it out while wet and as soon as I put oil in my hair it starts to shed.. maybe I'll try none at all.
I found out about the "no oil routine" on the Nappy Hair yahoo group. I have pasted part of it here. The full file can be found with the group.

Q: Does natural, kinky and/or curly ethnic hair need oil?

A: In a nutshell, it depends on your hair. Like many newly naturals, I wear a "wash, shake and go" style that involves washing or wetting my hair, applying products and letting my hair air dry. At first, my hair looked great using "old school" hair products, but after reading that mineral and petroleum oils were bad for the scalp and hair, I began to use natural oils, like shea butter, olive oil, corn oil, etc. I read the backs of jar after jar of hair oils, shopped endless hours online for "natural" oils and pomades only to find that after a few months, my hair looked worse than ever.

Good or Bad?
Over the summer, I started thinking about why we avoid mineral oil and petroleum. Hair experts feel that they prevent water, the best moisturizer there is, from getting to the hair shaft and dry the hair out over time. That led me to wonder what the real difference between "bad" oils and any other oil except possible health concerns. Even with the proper use of natural oils, my hair was rough, dry, hard and greasy from them sitting on top of my hair and not absorbing. Oils seemed to work for everyone but me! I even suggested them to others! Did I have weird hair?!

A New Routine
On a whim, I picked up a light vitamin E oil gel by Good Earth and decided to give it a try. It turned out that it wasn't an oil, as the name would imply, but rather a humectant emulsion, which drew much needed moisture into my hair. After using it for a while, my hair felt amazingly soft, had increased curl definition and dried without the crunchy feeling most gels yield. By look and feel, my hair was telling me it needed humectants, not oils. I immediately stopped using all oils and began a new hair routine. I researched humectants and what ingredients were classified as humectants in the products I used. I found that many products use humectants such as Glycerin, Panthenol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Propylene Glycol and Silk Amino Acids but usually not in the right order or in enough quantities. After careful shopping and a little trial and error, I soon compiled a short list of products and a routine that helped to add moisture to my hair without leaving it dry or with an oily film.

Before I started the routine below, I used nothing but Cream of Nature Shampoo and the Fruit of the Earth Gel for about a month. The gel is thick enough to add definition and it helped me "transition" out of the oils. I had a little bit of dryness during the first week, but once I started using the Color Vive as a 5 min conditioner after shampooing with the Cream of Nature, it was like a light came on. My hair stayed slightly damp during the day, but it didn't dry out again and it began to feel soft.

Is This For You?
If you are having problems with dry, hard hair that would normally have curl definition, but it's non-existent, then a no oil (NO) routine may work for you. A word of warning, THIS DOES NOT WORK FOR EVERYONE. Many people have hair that thrives on the use of oils of all kinds and I suggest they continue to use what works for them. I've also noted that a NO routine seems to work better on those who have "combination" hair; hair that is made up of different textures (silky, wooly, wiry, spongy), types (Andre Walker's 2's,3's & 4's), curls and waves all within the same section. Whether or not NO works or not crosses all hair types and textures in different ethnicities. If you seem to have no luck with oils, then the products and routine below may be what you are looking for.

The Basics:

No oil based anything unless it's 5th or more in order in the ingredient list.
Try combing once a week (this is not for everyone but I find it helps curl definition.
Wash once a week, rinse daily for "wash, shake and go" styling. Otherwise, rinse as needed.
Avoid blow drying unless it's impractical.
Apply products on dripping wet hair for "wash, shake and go" styles.

Hot Oil Treatments
Yes, you want to do this at least once a month. Super curly hair will still be drier than other hair types no matter what routine you use. It helps your ends because they do not normally benefit from the sebum you produce due to the distance from your scalp. Try to find a water based one like the Queen Helene brand from Sally's Beauty Supply.

Within the first couple of weeks to a month, you may notice a difference in your hair that will indicate if the NO routine is for you. If your hair is fuller, shinier, softer and has better curl definition IF you had curl definition to begin with, then you may wish to continue with the NO routine. After a couple of weeks, try a hot oil treatment or massage a little bit jojoba onto your tresses and then wash out to help keep your ends healthy. If you find that your hair becomes too unmanageable without the oils, then NO may not be for you!
I have been using very little oil which has helped me be able to handle CWing better than in the past. I CW and towel dry a bit. Then I use Dudly's PCA followed by Philosophy Shear Splendor serum. Then I let my hair dry about 65% and just put it up in a giant clip. I find that my hair feels soft for the whole day and I don't have any oil to weigh down my strands. My hair is fine, so this works well for me.