Although I have literally made it my business to learn any and everything about taking care of natural hair, I’ll be the first to admit that I can always use a little help. With so many products and techniques out there, you can lose hours on social media trying to figure out what works best (trust me, I have). So I caught up with Emmy-nominated Abbott Elementary lead hairstylist Moira Frazier to get some expert help on the best ways to keep my curls looking their best and to make wash day more manageable for me and my 13-year-old daughter.
To keep Jeanine’s curls poppin’, Frazier says she lives by the LOC method – a three-step process that involves liquid, oil and cream.
“When I set Jeanine’s wigs, I wet them down first, then I follow up with a lightweight serum. For the cream, I finish with Curl Confidence by Joico. It’s a defining cream that hydrates the curls,” she said.
Frazier adds that choosing the best type of oil for your hair depends on porosity – its ability to absorb and hold moisture. “Every oil has a different feature. I don’t use castor oil on everybody because it’s heavy,” she said. “For Jeanine’s curls, I like the way they expand, and I don’t ever want them to look greasy, so I use something very lightweight like argan or jojoba oil,” she said.
Frazier says one of the biggest mistakes people make when wearing wigs and braids is neglecting their own hair underneath. So although the Abbott actors wear wigs, caring for their natural hair is a priority.
“Wearing braids or wigs is not an excuse to neglect your hair,” she said. “Use products that will continuously hydrate and add moisture to your hair. Your hair sheds 100 strands per day. So you need as much moisture in it as possible to have that nice regrowth.”
Frazier says she braids the Abbott actors’ hair under their wigs with the Moisture Lock Hair Creme from her Fingaz Beauty line of hair care products. Infused with chebe oil and a blend of shea butter, mango butter and kokum butter, it’s formulated to hydrate the hair and leave it more manageable. It also helps to strengthen your strands and protect them from damage.
“You don’t have to use it every day, but even 2 -3 times per week makes a difference,” she said.
Frazier notes what you use to keep your wig in place can also be harmful to the hair. Her hair care line includes a Lace Lock Melting Spray which she uses on the Abbott set to hold the wigs in place without adhesives that can irritate the skin and damage edges.
Because I’m the parent of an impatient tween who wants to look good but can’t be bothered to sit still long enough for box braids, wash days are the worst in my house. So since the Abbott cast includes lots of kids, I had to find out how Frazier works with her tiniest clients.
“I have a 10-year-old, so I sympathize,” she laughed.
Frazier says she started early, stressing the importance of hair care to her daughter.
“Before she was old enough to realize what was going on, I talked to her about taking pride in how her hair looked before walking out the door every day. And when you do that, it can make wash day a little easier,” she said.
But recognizing that not every kid will care about making a good first impression, she suggests using hydrating products to help make detangling easier.
“I keep my daughter’s hair braided for about two weeks. But when that time is up, I’m trying to figure out what day I’m going to sacrifice to do her hair, because it’s a process,” Frazier laughed.
She designed her LAMIE LUV Moisture Shampoo and Conditioner Combo with her daughter in mind. The moisture-rich products are formulated to minimize breakage and make hair more manageable – which means less tears during the detangling process.
But at the end of the day, Frazier says one of the best ways to make wash day less painful for everyone is to add a few special details to the routine that make it fun.
“With my daughter, we’ll turn on a movie. I might pop some popcorn or order a pizza,” she says. “Make it a pampering session. Styles like box braids take a while, and kids will want to get up and take breaks. So be creative and keep them entertained.”