Last year, in the heart of COVID-19’s quarantine, I delved more than ever into online resources of natural hair care. Being at home certainly gave me the extra time to do so, and I knew I wasn’t the only one. Friends, family, coworkers, online forums–almost every hair-grower I was aware of had decided to let their locks grow with minimal manipulation.
Of course, one of those reasons was because they couldn’t go to a salon to as usual to have their hair cut, but hey–they were still embracing the longer lengths.
When I originally decided to go natural in 2010, I spent all my free time researching the best hair care practices available for African American, curly, “kinky” hair. I also spent time researching the benefits of using more natural ingredients and products over commercial items to gain maximum results.
Here is my hair in late 2013 when I was following my stricter weekly regimen—which included 4 – 6 hours of prep, wash, and pamper every Sunday.
Time, as it unfortunately does, passed, and my efforts to dedicate the necessary amount of efforts for healthy, long hair diminished. By 2017, my hair growth had not only stalled; it was retreating.
Here is a picture of my hair around that time:
While it’s not necessarily unhealthy hair, it’s not hair at its optimized health. Notice that there is literally zero progress in length. Notice how the ends taper dramatically in 2017. If I was trimming my ends regularly, thus eliminating knots that got caught on combs and ripped my ends apart, you shouldn’t be able to see through gaps at the bottom.
It wasn’t just poorly neglected ends that plagued me. I’d started playing with blow dryers, flat irons, semi-permanent hair dyes, and popular, albeit questionable hair brands. I kept trying to find that one thing that would get my itchy, flaky scalp smiling while turning my dry, frizz-prone hair into curly, lengthy gold.
All this frustration led me to re-chop and keep my hair short from 2019 until mid-2020. Which brings us back to quarantine, renewed resolution, and the active urge to restart my natural hair journey.
Despite the setbacks that have led me up to this point, there is one positive difference between my hair care journey in 2010 and the one now. For the first time, I know what I ‘m looking for as far as hair care advice.
My hair journey is no longer about finding the ”perfect” product, tool or technique just because everyone is using it. It’s about gaining knowledge and understanding how to use what I find for my needs. It’s about developing sustainable, lasting healthy habits and permanently improving not just my hair, but my lifestyle for the better.
If you feel the same way about your own hair—that it’s time for a real, quality change—I am more than happy to share one of the best hair care resources I have found since I renewed my journey. I present The Mind of B’s inaugural The Greatest Thing EVER:
Disclaimer: I am in no way associated, affiliated, or sponsored by GreenBeauty. I’m just really happy to share its awesomeness. 😊 Much thanks and appreciation to GreenBeauty for letting me include their logo in this post!
A Brief Overview
“The more I learn, the more I want to know. I applied my ‘talents’ and training into a subject that I care about, and ‘poof’ GreenBeauty was born. I love that I can create content and products that help and add something positive to people’s lives.”— GreenBeauty Founder
I initially found the GreenBeauty channel on YouTube when I was trying to find recent information on the Ayurvedic ingredient, amla powder. I’d had great success with Ayurvedic practices during my 2010 journey–really, really good results. The only downside was the amount of time it took to prepare the oils and powders every week. When other responsibilities took precedence, I reverted back to pre-made shampoos and conditioners.
Upon searching YouTube, the first search result I saw immediately drew me in by its title and its thumbnail: “Ayurveda – Science of AMLA and natural hair“.
” ‘Ayurvedic,’ is it?” I murmured, adjusting my glasses melodramatically and unnecessarily to get a better look. ” ‘Science,’ you say? You intrigue me.”
For those who have visited my blog before, you know I am not a complete stranger to Ayurveda beauty practices. However, what I thought I remembered from all those years ago was a dewdrop in the downpour of knowledge I gained from that video.
With a background in chemistry and graphic design as well as her own motivation to maintain her own hair to present free, widely available information in her videos, the founder of GreenBeauty has developed an all-encompassing channel detailing not only how the average head of hair growths, but how you can assess the state of your own head of hair and determine how you can maximize those results for yourself.
Why It’s the GTE (aka the E-RISE test)
The first thing that qualified GreenBeauty as the GTE was, of course, that she kept my attention with each video. I know that sounds vain, but I’m being honest here. I am a majestic creature (ha–can’t even type that with a straight face!), but I am still human. As such, I can have a short attention span like everyone else. It is difficult–nigh-on impossible–to receive and retain information when you are bored with how you are receiving it.
Thankfully, GreenBeauty achieves the first E in the E-RISE test easily. As I mentioned above, she relies on various elements to share her research, but she does it using an assortment of fun media and methods.
For example, in her “The Science of the Inversion Method” video, she begins with an animated clip of herself demonstrating the ever-popular hair-growing technique called The Inversion Method.
Twenty seconds later, with her results onscreen, the video is over with a “Like, Comment, and Subscribe!”
Or is it???
The video resumes with GreenBeauty’s breakdown of what the Inversion Method actually is, but I found myself replaying the intro a second time to smile. Nothing is more enjoyable to me than 1) a parody on other popular videos, and 2) a false early ending. But that’s probably just the video-editing geek in me.
The intro also showed just how aware GreenBeauty is of trends in the other hair blogs around her. Her ribbing is gentle and good natured, just like any quality parody is, but the fact that she knew how to creatively say, “I know you’ve seen nothing but this approach of this challenge on other videos; now, here’s mine,” made me realize that I was going to gain something new–things that I could understand and use.
Thus…I kept watching.
“I feel like your the realest YouTuber out there like everyone else is sponsored and makes these crazy videos with high priced unneeded products.”Comment from GreenBeauty video “High Bun (with Mini-Twist) – NATURAL HAIRSTYLE“
One of Green Beauty’s key messages throughout her videos is that there isn’t a single magic product or styling tool that will instantly fix your hair and make it grow thick as cable wires or long as the day.
To hear someone say it the way it is–not promise me insane miracle results just so she can get more views and likes–is such a relief. While miracles in general are cool–especially once they happen–there are too many external elements in effect (especially with hair) for one single item to perform miraculously for all. These elements must be taken into account and adjusted for accordingly when incorporating them into your current hair regimen.
One of my favorite GreenBeauty moments happens when she is talking about how detrimental wearing her hair in a non-stretched, loose style is to her hair’s ends. There’s nothing better than hearing a lovely, talented, scientific mind just state the rough facts about her split ends and single-strand knots: “These mutha%@$%&’s set me back for a year.”
I mean…it don’t get much realer than that.
American service members represent one of the most diverse countries in the world. We should be converting to a reality where a citizen can defend their country without having to sacrifice their personal ethnic identity.“Locks in the Military (ARMY),” GreenBeauty
Did you know that at one time, all of the U.S. military branches banned locks from being worn in active service?
Yeah–I certainly didn’t.
The good news is that, said bans are now in the past, with the Army and Navy being the last two branches to finally raise the ban (the Army in 2016, and the Navy in 2018). And a major part of that reason is GreenBeauty.
In 2016, GreenBeauty posted a video addressing the concerns that the Army had about wearing locks. The concerns ranged from the the level of professionalism they displayed, to how hygienic they truly were. Green Beauty answered them all, including expanding on the rich history of wearing locks themselves.
In addition to sharing this video on YouTube, it was also submitted with a formal letter to the Pentagon as part of a petition to raise the ban on wearing locs in the Army. GreenBeauty (along with army Lieutenant Whennah Andrews who reached out to GreenBeauty with the video request in the first place) did what they needed to represent lock-wearers everywhere, not just in active service. In extension, they defended anyone with identity pride and the unending desire to stand as yourself, by not having to conform to someone else’s aesthetic ideal.
Let’s jump back to GreenBeauty’s Inversion Method video–because actually, its difference from nearly every other inversion method video out there is what made me realize how much I wanted to highlight GreenBeauty’s stance on it.
As I was doing a YouTube Search for the Inversion Method, I noticed something very interesting. In nearly every video that appeared at the top of my list, one word popped out at me from every single title.
“I Tried the Inversion Method”
“I Try the Inversion Method”
“I Got 1 Inch in 1 Week with the Inversion Method!”
I, I, I. Me, my, mine.
Now, this isn’t me knocking on any other YouTube hair guru’s methods, video editing, or results. If all of these YouTubers actually did grow 1 inch of hair in a week, that’s AWESOME. That’s…phenomenal, actually. But sometimes, the techniques they used and methods in which they showcased their results…bothered me.
For example, one blogger measured one side of their hair before starting the 7-day challenge of massaging their head upside down for a week. At the end of the week, they measured their hair on the other side of their head and raved about how they couldn’t believe the method worked.
Not gonna lie–I low-key wanted to claw my face off when I saw them do that. It’s a fact that different areas of head hair grow at different rates due to blood circulation in each follicle and even external factors like lying on one side of your pillow more than the other (thank you, Healthline). The fact that this blogger either didn’t know to adjust for that, chose to ignore it, or–worse–was relying on viewers not knowing this fact to show “valid” results–concerns me a little for those who follow them.
Also, I’m pet-peeved that they didn’t measure on the same part of the head both times, but anyway–
Let’s get back to GreenBeauty.
Her video thumbnail and title–“The Science of the Inversion Method”–are neutral, unbiased from the beginning. In the 5-minute video itself, she only shows her face for 20 seconds. When it is on screen, not once does she utter the words “I” or “me.” Instead, it’s “you”. It’s “let’s.” Already, she’s devoting time to what her viewers want and need to know, not what she wants to show.
The only reason this Educational section isn’t longer, is because what more can I say about how informative GreenBeauty’s videos can be? If you want the science of hair care and hair growth, you’ve got it. If you want to learn the history of hair itself and what it means from a cultural point of view (and whoo boy, is that an eye and earful), you can find that, too. You can look up a plethora of different hair topics and find something that you are bound to learn anew:
- The benefits of using herbs and natural remedies (including Ayurveda)
- Caring for your scalp
- Exploring your hair type (which GreenBeauty complete revamps into a much more structured breakdown than the popularized Andre Walker’s Curl Typing System)
This is an intelligent, multi-talented individual who is using her platform to not only help others, but to inform even more that hair is not just about hair. It’s about living freely, positively, and peacefully in all ways.
And she never stops at simply telling us to take her word for it. She never takes a side on whether a hair product, tool, or technique is right or wrong for you. She doesn’t even promote brands. Instead, she gives historical and scientific data (with the aid of microscopic imagery) to provide evidence behind her words. What she can’t display in real time, she demonstrates using 3D models and animated sequences as she describes each process.
- have done every popular hair technique and trick to get fully luxurious, healthy hair,
- have tried every hyped-up hair product on the market,
- AND have followed every YouTube and Instagram hair celebrity and swore you did everything they did, forever and ever and ever and a day, and STILL saw no results…
I highly recommend you taking a look at this channel and see if there is something that fits you and your journey.
Because GreenBeauty won’t tell you to do any of these things.
As for me? How are my results going with my hair growth journey? What have I taken from GreenBeauty’s videos? What are my faves?
I’d love to tell you. And I will, if you would like to know–someday.
For today, though, other than building a backbone to the start of this post, this isn’t about what’s happened to my hair.
This is about GreenBeauty—the first and very spiffy Greatest Thing EVER.