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African-American hair is different from all other hair. Too often, African-American women use the wrong shampoo and conditioners. It’s tough to keep your hair under control without using products that make it greasy and oily. To help clear up the confusion, these are a few of the best shampoos for African-American hair.

The Ideal Shampoo for African-American Hair

Examine the ingredients on the shampoo label. An ideal shampoo should be gentle and alcohol-free. Look for hair products containing natural oils such as jojoba, grape seed, avocado, olive oil, tea tree oil, coconut oil, or emu oil. Never confuse natural oils with mineral oil, which will dry out your hair.

Condition Your Hair

To keep hair soft and well-moisturized, always use a conditioner after shampooing. Not only is conditioning good for the health of your hair, but it also makes it easier to manage and reduces follicle breakage. No matter how gentle a shampoo, it strips your hair of its natural oils, making it necessary to restore moisture. The right conditioner (preferably of the same brand as the shampoo) will do just that.

How Often to Wash Hair

Many African-American women wash their hair too frequently. Washing it every day leaves hair dry and prone to breakage, especially if you use a heated styling tool such as a blow dryer, curling iron, or flatiron, or if your hair is chemically treated. Ideally, African-American hair shouldn’t be washed more than once a week with a shampoo, although you can rinse your hair with water every day.

Hydratherma® – Naturals Moisture Boosting Shampoo

This shampoo stimulates the hair and scalp with natural extracts, such as sea kelp, algae, and seaweed. Enriched with omega 3 and omega 6 acids, it promotes an 8-percent moisture level in African-American hair. Hydratherma cleanses, hydrates, softens, and detangles hair without unnecessary buildup.

Karen’s Body Beautiful® – Ultimate Conditioning Shampoo

Karen’s Body Beautiful shampoo moisturizes thirsty hair without stripping it of natural oils, which is why African-American women praise this shampoo as being perfect for their hair. In addition to being ideal for dry and curly hair, it’s recommended for colored and chemically treated hair.

Elucence’s® – Moisture Benefits Shampoo

Enriched with Irish moss, wheat protein, ginseng, peach extracts, and wheat protein, Elucence shampoo is a gentle product that’s getting great reviews. It moisturizes without weighing down hair. With regular use, hair feels softer, healthier, and fresher.

Zipporah’s® – Delight My Hair Moisturizing Shampoo

Zipporah’s shampoo is rated ideal for African-American hair, as it contains coconut milk, Shea butter, and aloe juice. It cleanses the scalp and hair gently while moisturizing deeply.

Redken’s® – Clear Moisture Shampoo

The Redken product line has been trusted for years for its outstanding quality. Their clear moisture shampoo is enriched with apricot oil, glycerine, and glucosamine, and helps rebalance and restore damaged hair and keep it in peak condition.

Keep in mind that the best shampoo for African-American women usually is not available at the supermarket or drug store. For quality products, you would be better served by visiting a health store or hair salon that caters to African-American hair.

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Building Fitness into Your Busy Life

Those leftover pregnancy pounds and weak muscles are discouraging to any mom, even if it has been years since you had your last kid. You know that you should exercise, but there doesn’t seem to be an effective way to fit it in. There’s no secret formula to being physically fit, but if you try some practical advice you can discover what works for you.

Make a Commitment

You’re not going to get any more motivated by trying to do a couple of aimless workouts and then feeling guilty when you can’t keep up the routine. Do yourself a favor and make a clear commitment with goals and a plan before you start a fitness regimen.

Set Realistic Goals

In order to change your lifestyle, you’ll need goals that are motivating but realistic. Don’t shoot to lose twenty pounds in the next month. Your goals don’t even need to be related to your weight or pant size. A different approach is committing to frequency. If you commit to twenty minutes of exercise four days a week after doing none, your physique will change in the way you want it to. If you find end goals inspiring, sign up for a fun event like a 5k run.

Include Your Kids

Not only will you be creating a healthier lifestyle for you, but you will be teaching your kids the value of fitness. It will also be more fun. Your activities can change depending on the age of your kids. Go for power walks with the stroller, take family bike rides, walk the dog together, play catch or tag at the park, participate with a yoga video together, or run laps around the field while your child is at soccer practice.

Short Sessions

Ideally you might want an hour-long work out, but sometimes it’s just not feasible. If you can get your heart rate up for ten minutes at a time, you will effectively burn some calories and build some strength. Fitting three ten-minute sessions or two fifteen-minutes sessions into a day is a lot more realistic for some people than one thirty-minute session.

Mix It Up

While you should build fitness into your daily routine, you will almost certainly get bored and lose motivation if you are always doing the same workouts. Always be looking for something new. Try indoor and outdoor sessions, resistance training, cardio, relaxation exercises, and workouts of varying intensity. This will keep you excited about you routine and help you work out your whole body.

Include Your Friends

You probably don’t get enough time to socialize anyway, so consider the benefits of having workout buddies. You will have more fun and will be more motivated when working out with your friends. It’s also a great way to make new friends. Join a fitness class or a club, or plan to run a charity race together. Working out is also a great way to spend time with your significant other.

Reward Yourself

You deserve a reward when you meet your goals. Being more fit is a reward in itself, but don’t feel bad about treating yourself to a shopping trip or a new outfit. Congratulate yourself, you’ve worked hard!

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