The max hydration method arrived in the curly hair world via a comprehensive thread on BHM created by PinkeCube, although a few YouTubers have been practicing a variation of it for some time and were the inspiration for creating the regimen – Aketafitgirl, Danabnatural & Rachaelcpr.
The max hydration method is a 5-step regimen created to optimize moisture levels in low porosity type 4 hair although other hair types can try it as well. The steps are broken down below:
- Step 1 – Clarifying the hair with baking soda or apple cider vinegar depending on your hair type, which also opens up the cuticles to receive moisture.
- Step 2 – Cowashing and detangling with approved conditioners.
- Step 3 – Rinsing the hair with clay. This is the step where your curls start to appear.
- Step 4 – Leave in conditioner.
- Step 5 – Apply botanical gel and seal with oil.
- There is also a part one before you start the MHM method where you apply the Cherry Lola caramel treatment. This is repeated every 8 – 12 weeks.
You can read a breakdown of the detailed regimen on the official Max Hydration Method website – the site is currently defunct but you can still read about it on the BHM forum.
My Experience with the Max Hydration Method
I was initially reluctant to try this because it looked like too many steps and a recipe for excessive hair loss through manipulation but as I viewed pictures and testimonials, I carried out more research and decided to give the 7-day challenge a try at least before bailing on it.
My hair wasn’t particularly dry before I started but as a mostly type 4 curlista, I’ll take moisture wherever I can find it :).
On the first day I tried the max hydration method, it took me half the day because I also included the Cherry Lola caramel treatment and I was still trying to figure out the product measurements for my hair. It was also extremely messy and my bathroom looked like a pigsty by the time I was done but I was pleased with the results and the hair loss was not as much as I expected from all the manipulation. First day pics below:
I decided to go ahead and complete the 7 day full regimen challenge but with a gap of 1 day in-between. There was simply no way I could do it everyday with my work schedule. However, the results remained consistent. I didn’t modify anything throughout the 7 days and followed the regimen as laid out on the website.
The Good Things About Max Hydration Method
- It helps get much needed moisture to chronically dry hair. The defined curls are a pleasant end result to the method.
- You can wear a wash and go without your hair strands tangling on each other. You want to take the time to separate your curls in steps 3 – 5 for this to work though.
- It will curtail PJism to a certain extent since you have to stick to the specific products recommended to achieve the desired results.
Some Cons About Max Hydration Method
- Until you get a hang of it, it will take forever to complete but please don’t let this discourage you from trying it.
- It can be a bit messy initially.
- Until you learn to maximize the products, it can get expensive real quick especially if you have hair longer than shoulder length.
Final Thoughts on the Max Hydration Method
I love it! Currently I’m wearing braids but before then, I did my modified regimen every 3 days and the full regimen every weekend. I alternated the Cherry Lola caramel treatment with my henna & indigo treatment every 8 – 12 weeks. There is a lot of anti-MHM sentiment out there but I would just ignore it and try this out if you have tried everything for your dry hair and can’t get it to act right despite your efforts.
There were a few parts of the regimen that my scalp didn’t agree with, which led me to conduct my own research and modify the regimen to make my scalp happy. The next article will discuss my modified regimen in detail.
You can view some more of my hair pictures below. I still have product in my hair in pic 1 & 3 and pic 2 is a day 3 high bun.
You can view a video collage of my results. Let me know if you have any MHM questions in the comments section. Happy hair growing! 🙂