The Baggy Method vs. The Greenhouse Effect

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The Baggy Method
The Baggy Method is a hair care method that offers a creative solution for dry hair by seeking to promote hair growth by trapping in much-needed moisture. It allows you to prevent damage to your delicate tresses, especially your ends. If you suffer from dry hair or split ends, simply apply a moisturizer (or your favorite leave-in) to the ends of your hair. Or, if necessary, (or depending on your preference) to your whole head. Then, add your favorite oil or butter to seal in the moisture.

Place a plastic processing cap over your whole head. If only baggying your ends, you can use saran wrap or a ziplock sandwich bag and then secure it with a ribbon tie or an ouchless hair elastic. Just make sure the tie or elastic is on the wrap or bag and NOT your hair! For additional nighttime protection, add your usual satin scarf or silk wrap. Keep covered for 3-4 hours, or overnight, if you wish. Then, remove the wrap/bag and style your hair accordingly.

The Greenhouse Effect
The Greenhouse Effect (GHE), unlike the Baggy Method, DOES NOT use moisturizers or leave-ins. It encourages the use of shampoos and conditioners that are 100% natural. And, instead of using commercial, chemical-based products, the GHE relies on body heat to stimulate the sebum production of your own scalp.

To use this technique, simply apply an all natural oil and/or butter to dry hair. To jump start the process (or if you do not produce enough body heat on your own), you can also lightly mist your hair with water prior to adding an all natural oil or butter. Make sure your hair is damp, not wetPlace a plastic processing cap over your whole head. Secure the cap with a satin scarf or silk wrap. Add another satin or silk wrap, or a knit cap or beanie to produce even more body heat. The steamy, tropical environment will encourage your hair to stay moist and retain length. You should see water droplets on the processing cap when you remove it in the morning.

The next day, after you remove the cap and scarf/wrap, you can style your hair any way you choose. Just let it air dry. Or, you can prep your hair the night before (i.e., with braids/twists) prior to using the GHE for a braid- or twist-out the following morning. The choice is yours. The key is frequency. The more you do it, the better your chances for optimum moisture and growth.

Some Helpful Tips
Tip #1: Either method is suitable for both natural and relaxed beauties alike. So, take your pick! These techniques will help naturalistas retain more moisture while making the new growth of relaxed divas more manageable. Options, anyone?
Tip #2: Use a processing cap instead of a grocery bag. Grocery bags have chemicals and toxins in them that are not worth the risk. Besides, you can get a bag of 15 processing caps from Wal-mart for only one buck! Parlez-vous good deal?
Tip #3: Don’t overdo it! Start with 2-3 days a week to see how your hair responds, then build up to 4-5 days a week (if necessary). Remember, you cannot baggy your hair 24/7.Your hair needs to breathe. Otherwise, your strands will weaken, become overly elastic, and break. Who wants that?

P.S. I started a growth challenge on the first of June, using a combination of these methods. I will post my progress after three months (in September). Stay tuned!



Filed under Hair Regimens

22 responses to “The Baggy Method vs. The Greenhouse Effect

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  9. Sandara

    I have relaxed hair and it’s cut into a tapered pixie cut but I want to grow it out using this method but it makes my hair wet and I can’t retain any curled style ( with a hair straightener). Normally I curl my hair once a week on a Sunday and it keeps the style till school is finished on a Friday. Any suggestions?

    • Hi, hon! I’m sorry, but there is no way to use the baggy or GHE methods without your hair getting wet. The moisture these two methods generate is the whole reason why they are so effective. I say, use it to your advantage. Since you have a tapered pixie cut, this will be a breeze. Just style your hair in the morning with some mousse, curl activator, or your fave moisturizer (after you remove the processing cap). Your hair will take much less time to style and won’t be as prone to heat damage!

  10. Yolanda

    Thank you for the article. I have heard of both methods and assumed they were one in the same. But you explained each method thoroughly and cleared up my confusion. I will be trying very soon, as well as passing this information onto friends and family.

  11. bastet

    It might be a dumb question, but do these methods work just as well for caucasian hair? I’ve been reading a lot about moisture retention by baggying, steaming etcetera but I notice it is always directed towards kinky/curly hair types … Is there a specific reason for that, or have the straight-haired among us just not caught on to the hype. 🙂 Thanks a lot, and excuse my english, I am not a native speaker!

    • What an excellent question!

      The reason straight-haired people have no use for such methods is because the natural sebum their scalps produce goes from root to tip quite easily because it has a straight path to follow. Curly, coily, and kinky hair, on the other hand, is innately more dry because sebum cannot go from root to tip due to all the twists and turns, and zigs and zags of each strand.

      A Caucasian with curly hair would benefit from the baggy method or GHE just as much as someone with 4b/4c hair. This is because these moisture-retention methods have less to do with ethnicity and much more to do with hair type! 😉

  12. tasha

    Can you do the inversion method and baggy method at the same time?

    • Yes, of course! Each technique does different things … The inversion method expedites hair growth while the GHE or baggy method create an environment to maintain moisturized hair.

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  16. I didn’t know there is a difference between the baggy method and the GHE. Thanks so much for the informative article.

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