Those Who Live in Greenhouses

Woman in the Shower

Photo Credit

I first heard about the Greenhouse Effect when I watched a Real Queens video on YouTube. I may be mistaken here (and if I am, please forgive my misinformation), but it seems to have originated with this YouTuber. When I asked Professor Google, a lot of links pointed back to either the Real Queens YouTube channel or to a blog of the same name. But there are numerous variations in the method out there. Here are the highlights…

How Does It Work?

The Greenhouse Effect (GHE) is a method for promoting scalp stimulation and hair growth using moisture. The basic premise is to create a warm steamy environment for an extended period of time in order to maximize the moisturizing of the hair.

What Do You Need?

  • plastic shower cap or plastic shopping bag
  • oil or butter of choice – Jamaican Black Castor Oil is the recommended oil, although EVOO seems to be popular too
  • scarf or head-tie
  • hat (like the kind you wear in the winter – optional)
  • time

What Do You Do?

  1. Apply the oil to dry or damp hair
  2. Prepare the hair (i.e., twist, braid, bantu knot, etc.) for the next day
  3. Cover head with plastic cap
  4. Tie scarf over the plastic cap
  5. Put on the hat
  6. Leave head covered overnight
  7. In the morning, style as usual

Sounds an awful lot like something called the Baggy Method, doesn’t it? Both require you to coat your ends with oil. Both require you to cover the hair with plastic. Confusing…

So What’s the Difference?

The main difference I can see is that Baggying aims to improve retention while GHE is believed to result, not only in increased retention, but also in actual growth from the root. This is because the whole head is covered during the process, instead of just the ends.

I found a post on Care 4 Curls that compares the two methods. Read that here. The author made an interesting point: to her, it made little sense to exclude a scalp stimulating step in the method. If the purpose of the method is to encourage growth from the root as opposed to simply strengthening the hair shaft, it would seem necessary to physically stimulate the scalp on a regular basis.


I think I’m gonna give this a try and see how it goes. I’ll report back in a few weeks.

Are you using an intense conditioning method, such as baggying or GHE? Which one do you think works better? Why?


CoverGirl Comes Alive with Janelle Monae

I’m always too rushed/lazy/confused in the morning to do much more than wash what needs washing and brush what needs brushing.  If I’m feeling like being especially GLAM, I might put on some lip gloss and mascara.

All this to say that happenings in the makeup world don’t usually make ripples in the water for me.  That is, until I stumbled upon these…

Y’all… gone are the days of the stereotypical “Girl-Next-Door.”  CoverGirl continues to break boundaries by featuring the unique and trend-bucking Janelle Monae, who joins the ranks of the emblematic Queen Latifah, P!nk, and Ellen DeGeneres, as its face.

One of the best quotes I’ve come across from Janelle is:

That’s what I’ve always been fighting for – making sure that people love themselves for who they are, and we don’t pick on people because we’re uncomfortable with ourselves, or who they are. That’s been my message, from when I was young to now. There are lots of young girls out there who are struggling with their identities… afraid of being discriminated against or teased. I take risks and use my imagination so that other people will feel free and take risks. That’s my hope. (source:

It’s good to see the brand recognize and celebrate diversity.  Sounds like she’s a perfect fit for their campaign!

In the aftermath of Viola Davis and Gabby Douglas receiving flack and negative comments about their hair, what does this new partnership between Janelle and CoverGirl mean to you?