Say Hello to Emilia Luyindula, founder of The Good Hair Co.
We are often asked “I have curly/wavy/natural hair. Will Ksoni shampoo and conditioner work for me?” The answer is a resounding “Yes!” In fact, we designed Ksoni to be effective for a wide variety of hair and skin types. Because navigating the hair aisle can be confusing at the best of times (and we now have more time on our hands at home to experiment with hair care routines), we turned to Emilia Luyindula, founder of The Good Hair Co. who use data to connect people with kinky, coily and curly hair with the products that will work best for them.
Tell us about The Good Hair Co.
The Good Hair Co. is an information and product discovery platform for people with Kinky, Curly and Wavy hair. Our mission is to help people with all types of textured hair by providing the right information on how to manage and maintain their curls as well as introduce them to the right products for their hair in real time.
We champion the notion that ‘all hair is good hair’, we reject the ideology that natural hair is deemed inappropriate in adulthood, the workplace and the public domain. We are reclaiming our good hair so that we are able to educate and influence the start of a good hair revolution.
What inspired you to start?
I started The Good Hair Co. in July 2019 out of frustration. I had been natural for over 4 years, maybe a little longer - and I felt as though I had no idea what I was doing. My hair was growing and it was the longest and strongest it had ever been, but how could I ensure my hair was getting the right nutrients it needed? Was it healthy? What suitable products were available apart from the usual ‘black’ hair care products? Was I even handling my hair carefully?
I knew I wasn’t the only person in the same situation so I thought to myself, “product aside, what do I actually need?” I wanted to be able to share my thoughts and frustrations with someone, shop with ease and not leave the hair shop frustrated with products I’d stress bought. I also wanted a space full of relevant information for me, my friends and family - that was factual, fun and helped me unlearn a lot of negative connotations I had towards my hair.
What can users expect when they subscribe to The Good Hair Co.?
We’re providing both a service and a product. Users will be able to access our platform and explore in-depth information on the management and maintenance of their hair, specifically focusing on their hair type or problems they are experiencing, all with the help of our advisory board consisting of Trichologists, Dermatologists, Cosmetic Scientists, Nutritionists and Mental Health Specialists.
Our product discovery platform is a hand curated subscription - when users sign up we will ask them a series of questions that revolve around their lives which might affect their hair, such as; lifestyle, mental health, diet and the current problems they’d like us to help with as well as any past product usage to help us get a better understanding of what stage they are in their hair journey. From this we will be able to consult with our advisory and provide users with the right products or solutions for their hair.
What sort of benefits do your users feel they are lacking in the current selection of products available?
I think there is an incredible selection of hair products currently available on the market that we are not yet properly introduced to. Yes, there are major players in the hair industry but I truly believe the key players are the smaller brands - they’ve got their ears closer to the ground. When speaking to a majority of our community, they’ve expressed how excited they are to trial new brands and products so we’re really taking it on ourselves to ensure that there is more variety in their spending than they believe.
Product wise, I think more people should use hair masks! I absolutely love them and use them every Sunday when I can. It’s my form of self-care and really preps me for the week ahead - they’re great for making your hair super silky soft, adding extra shine and defining my curls and if you’re constantly on your feet like I am, can be a great hold between washes.
What is one of the biggest myths about kinky/curly/wavy hair that you come across?
A common misconception amongst Kinky Hair is that it shouldn't be washed more than once a month. Not true folks!
Your scalp is an extension of your face but it's covered with hair so we should treat it with care! Wash it regularly as your scalp needs moisture and to be clean.
When it comes to product usage, there is such a thing as overloading your hair and this product buildup can lead to bacteria and yeast being trapped in your scalp making it difficult for your hair to grow.
Co-washing is a great way of washing your hair without stripping the essential moisture from your curls or even opting for a sulphate free shampoo, make sure you get it right into your scalp and massage it as you would your ends.
Is there a difference in hair care routines for different curl types?
Yes there is, let’s compare Wavy and Kinky hair for example - two very different curl types.
Unlike Kinky Hair, Wavy hair tends to frizz a lot more and lack definition - so for someone with Wavy hair they would be looking at lighter styling options such as mousses and gels with have enough weight to keep curls intact and frizz-free while someone with Kinky hair wouldn’t have to worry about frizz as much their curls are so tightly packed.
It's really important when looking for Afro/Curly hair products that they contain ingredients that can really help moisturize your hair. The curls in Kinky Hair are tightly packed and product takes a little longer to travel from root to tip, as a result Kinky Hair can get dry very easily, so when shopping for products I'm looking for products that are packed with oils and a lot of slip meaning that they are very thick and don't require me having to use so much or put it on frequently.
What role do sustainable hair formulations play in your product selection (ie vegan, sulphate free)? Many people feel they don’t work as well for curly hair. Is that true?
We now see that a lot of products marketed towards afro hair are much more “clean” than they would have been a few years ago, along with a rise in the use of natural ingredients.
For a lot of people with Afro Hair that have transitioned, they're looking for cleaner and sustainable alternatives in their hair products, and more people moving away from mainstream hair brands and traditional shampoos that typically contain the use of SLS and Sulphates in them as research has shown that while these ingredients do have cleaning properties, they are harsh on tighter curl patterns, stripping them off the moisture they need and they have followed through with this by also looking for products with sustainable and organic ingredients too that are not only better for themselves but also the environment.
Hair care products for both Afro and Curly hair are very interchangeable and I believe they work - they just need to be given time and dedication for them to do their magic!
It’s funny you mention that, as we do tend to give up on a product if it doesn’t produce desired results after one or two tries. How long should someone persevere with a hair care routine before giving up and trying something new?
When starting or changing your hair routine, we’d recommend experimenting for a month so that you can properly study your hair and document your problems.
People often tell me about a new product they’ve started using but they’re not having much luck with it and I generally tend to ask them how often are they using it and whether they are overcompensating because they want quicker results - don’t do that. As frustrating as it is, results take time and overloading your head with products in hopes to stop dryness isn’t going to magically produce luscious curls.
If there is one piece of advice you could give for a curly girl shopping in the hair care aisle today, what would that be?
First things first, breathe. There is a lot to take in, but it is ok, your perfect routine will come with time! Do your research into the specific ingredients you’re looking for and before you go shopping for anything ask yourself, “What am I trying to solve?” Are you looking for a new moisturiser for your dry scalp? Or maybe you want a new oil to help add shine. Whatever it is, don’t let yourself get side tracked. Focus on one specific problem - this will help reduce spending.
Most importantly if you can shop local, think of the smaller brands and how you can really benefit their business.
The Good Hair Co. is launching soon!
Sign up to their mailing list ahead of launch, www.thegoodhair.co
Get in touch with - firstname.lastname@example.org
Join the private community - https://www.facebook.com/groups/thegoodhairclub