So we all know that the maximum hydration method aka MHM is a lot of work and very time consuming but the benefits are great. If you have aborted the MHM like me or you have not even tried it because of time constraints but your hair is quite dry and can do with a bit more moisture, then you may want to read on because there is salvation for your hair after all. Instead of the MHM, enter GHE or BM,simply put, the Green House Effect or the Baggy Method respectively.
Many of us naturals have been doing this already but lacking consistency to rip the full benefits and also not knowing that the practice had a name. Some naturals tend to differentiate the baggy method from the green house effect, (allow me to sometimes refer to these two as BM and GHE from here) but I think they are the same as the GHE uses the BM to trap heat. I think they now have names depending on who made the practice popular and decided to attribute a name to the practice. Different people adopt different ways of doing this technique to retain moisture and as such the difference in the GHE and BM is basically the different techniques people use. This is my opinion. Anyways, back to what you need to know.
What is the Green House Effect
This technique entails massaging the scalp in the evening and then placing a plastic cap on so as to trap the heat from your scalp to moisturise the hair. So in a way, it is bagging your hair so as to trap heat and moisture which creates a humid atmosphere for your hair and scalp. This increases moisture in your strands and is also said it stimulates your follicles to grow hair faster while keeping your hair moisturised so that there is minimum breakage thereby more length retention. The jury is still out on its ability to stimulate faster hair growth though I can testify on the moisture boost. Some naturals have reported that they have recovered from a bald spot by using the GHE or BM and quite a number of naturals rely on this for moisture, Naptural85 included.
Benefits of the Green House Effect on hair
I feel I have kind of mentioned these already but there is no harm in listing them again for you.
- Increased moisture on hair
- Less split ends
- Less breakage
- Length retention
- faster hair growth
How to do a Green House Effect Regimen
I will tell you what I do when I do the GHE or the BM for these two are one. I also mostly do this when my hair is in mini twists. It is just more easier to handle the shrinkage and styling afterwards.
- Before going to bed, I massage my scalp for at least 3 minutes with or without oil, (rarely with oil unless I am going to wash my hair the next morning)
- Mist my hair a bit with my spritzer and then seal with Olive oil followed by Shea butter. I style my hair for the next day in a way that stretches my hair while being comfortable to sleep with so that I will not have to style my hair in the morning.
- I place a plastic cap on my hair, normally a cheap shower cap that I get from Dischem for R7.95 for a pack of 3 and I use the same cap for about 2 to 3 times
- I will then proceed to tying a satin scarf on followed by a satin bonnet sometimes to increase the amount of heat trapped and I hit the pillow.
- In the morning, I will only have to remove my mobile overnight steamer and I am good to go. No need to style my hair. I may only need to make my edges smoother with my fingers though. I always let my hair air dry.
Her is a pictorial for you for ease of reference
This only takes me about 10 minutes at most and it is kind of a normal natural’s night routine with the plastic cap added of course. I do this every month or when I feel my hair is very dry for 3 consecutive nights and then do not do it again until after a month or so depending on how my hair feels. I also do this almost every time I wash my hair. The thing is I find it difficult to sleep these days with a wet head so I can not deep condition overnight. So this is my pre-poo treatment of some sort.
Green House Effect on Natural Hair Tips
- Do not attempt to do it for more than 5 nights consecutively as it may cause your hair to have moulds and become smelly which may trigger infections and we don’t want that happening. Rather take breaks in between and do 3 nights per week until you feel your hair is moist enough to take a longer break.
- Braid or twist your hair before putting the plastic cap on if you do not want to deal with excessive shrinkage the next morning. Because of the trapped moisture, natural kinky hair will do what it knows best. Shrink.
- If you are trying to maintain a straight hair style, then it is not the right time to do the GHE. Wait until you are ready for shrinkage.
- Moisture balance is key so do not over do the moisture. incorporate some protein treatments with your moisture drive so that your hair does not get a moisture overload and break off. We want stronger healthy hair remember.
I hope this helps someone struggling with dry hair. Because the full MHM was a non starter with my heavy schedule, now I know I can rely on GHE when my hair needs some moisture boost.
Have you tried the GHE before? What was your experience?