By Christina of The Mane Objective

Whether relaxed bone straight, 137% natural, transitioning, texturized, kinky, curly, colored or cut, there are some supplies every woman should have in her haircare arsenal. The great news? None of the tools cost over 3 bucks (if you do it the right way). Oh, now you’re excited! Read on…

10. Tattered Rags

Whether they be old towels you bleached to kingdom come that one time on accident, or old faded t-shirts from an ex, having cloths you don’t care about are beneficial to any regimen. From drying hair post-shampoo, to protecting your sink/floor during a messy henna treatment, these tattered rags come in super handy — because you don’t care if they get dirty or discolored.

9. Plastic Caps/Grocery Bags

Clear plastic caps are great for protecting a style in the shower, and holding in moisture for a deep or overnight conditioning. They are usually no more than $2 a pack, and hold up pretty well. Cool bonus: recycle your plastic grocery bags! They work just the same as plastic caps, if not better. Just pile your hair in, use the handles to tie the bag closed,  and ta-da!

8. Butterfly Clamps/Clips

These clips are a lifesaver when its time to detangle, separate, or style hair. They’re cheap (around $4 bucks for a 12 pack on Amazon), easy to use, and easy to clean.

7. Banana Clip

Super throwback, right? I have recently fallen in love with this hair blast from the past all over again. The banana clip has officially replaced my scrunchie for buns, ponytails, and other styles. They are easy to use, secure hair well without tension, and are incredibly versatile. Cop yours at Wal-Mart for $3 for a 3-pack or on Amazon.

6. Applicator Bottle

Sure, you could use it for its original intended purpose; mixing and applying hair color. It’s also a great tool for moisturizing your scalp. If you tend to get heavy handed with the oils like me, a narrow tipped applicator bottle will become your saving grace. It allows for precise application of oils to your scalp or hair, which is a bonus while rocking a straightened style (bye bye greasies). Just remember: the harder you squeeze the bottle, the more your product comes out!

5. Spray Bottle

Cue the soul glow! Nah, I’m kidding. Sometimes, products come in packages that are more of a pain than purposeful (like Infusium 23 Repair & Renew Leave-In). Or maybe you want to moisten your hair with water, without dunking your head in the sink. Or maybe you think a certain product is too thick, and you need a way to water it down and disseminate it evenly throughout your hair. All of the above and more are great uses for the spray bottle. Grab yours at Sally’s, Target (in the travel sized bottle section) or on Amazon for a few pennies over $1.

4. Bobby Pins

You can never, ever, EVER have too many bobby pins. Large, small, colored or not, these little fellas are a life saver. From faux hawk sculpting, to bun securing or just keeping my growing out bangs in place, bobby pins add dimension and variety to any style. I am known to have bobby pin stashes in my house, car, work bag, gym bag, and purse if I am carrying one (I hate purses… especially big ones. All they do is allow you to carry around unnecessary junk. Tell me I’m lying!). But the point is, bobby pins are incredibly useful and multifaceted.

3. Wide Tooth Comb

Once your hair reaches an inch long, a wide tooth comb becomes somewhat of a staple in your arsenal. I know, most short hair ladies use rat tail or fine tooth combs. I’m not knocking you if you do but, how much of your hair ends up in the sink? At least use a wide tooth comb to prep your hair for whatever you’re doing…before reaching for that denman or rat tail comb. Right now, I’m rolling with my Target special aka Conair wide tooth comb that hit me for around $3. Amazon has $3 wide tooth combs also.

2. Satin Scarf/Bonnet

Do I really need to explain why sleeping on anything less than satin is a bad idea? Didn’t think so.

And theeeee most important tool of all……… Drumroll, please!

1. A Hair Journal

Huh? What? How is this #1? Let me explain. If you’re anything like me, you can’t remember what you wore to work yesterday….let alone what combination of products and procedures you used on your hair last week. So keep a journal. Put an app like colornote on your phone, keep a literal journal, or heck, keep a blog! This blog is just as much for me as it is y’all. The point is for you to record what products your hair loved, hated, and everything in between. No need in making the same mistake twice, or forgetting how to do that dope style from two Mondays ago.

Are there any tools you can’t live without?

Christina Patrice

Born, raised, and living in Los Angeles, Christina is BGLH's resident transitioning expert and product junkie. In addition to loving all things hair, she is a fitness novice and advocate of wearing sandals year-round. For more information on transitioning, natural hair, and her own hair journey, visit Or, if you like pictures follow Christina on Instagram @maneobjective.

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97 Comments on "10 Hair Tools Every Natural (Regardless of Hair Type) Should Have"

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Pecanprincess southernstyle
Pecanprincess southernstyle

Ummmmmm whats a banana clip? Yo no se 🙁


google banana clip for a picture…but it’s literally a curved plastic that opens with small combs…kinda like teeth. It was crazy popular at one time…and apparently coming back for some. It’s just another type of barrett. hth!

Pecanprincess southernstyle
Pecanprincess southernstyle

Google!!!! Ugh, how did i forget about ol trusty??? Lol…thx! Gosh i havent seen one of those in forever!


Don’t forget the Goody Ouchless hair bands!!


The ONE thing I really don’t do enough of is document my hair journey. I took a few pics here or there within my first year being natural. However I said to myself after 2 years of slacking, I need to get it together and get creative w/documenting my journey, lol. Plus I definitely want to start doing product reviews.

Hmmm…I feel a blog idea emerging 😛


I’ve really been slack with recording my journey too. Well, not slack, just plain negligent! I reaaly need to get back on track with that. After all, we look at others’ blogs and videos. Someone will be inspired by you as well.

I almost have all the things listed. The most helpful was the bottle applicator. I’ve had it for a few months. I love how easy it is to apply my oil mixture on my scalp and hair. I had a hair journal a few year back but eventually stopped writing in it. I’m good at keeping a mental not of what works on my hair and what doesn’t because I’m a minimalist when it comes to the products I use. I just also want to add that their is nothing wrong with doing something that others don’t do or using… Read more »

I’ve purchased about 3 different spray bottles and they all suck!! They “spray” in a straight line dribbling all over the place. I need one that actually sprays…any recommendations?


Try a spray bottle with a round twist nozzle cap that you can loosen and tighten. Its important to have a sprayer with a nice forceful mist spray. Its also good to have that straight stream sprayer when you want to get oil/water mixtures directly to the scalp. I keep both types of spray bottles handy for my wash and go and moisturizing needs.


I got a really nice spray bottle from Dollar Tree. It’s conical in shape and sprays a fine mist.

Pecanprincess southernstyle
Pecanprincess southernstyle

I got mine from the 99 cent store…it works really well…try there…


Targets dollar bin spray bottle is interesting and may be what you want. The bottle is curved and the sprayer is angled. I haven’t had the drippling thing happen yet. Sally’s is always a good place to try stuff out. Buy a few different types, keep the receipt and take back what you don’t like.


ohh….maybe try closing the knob on the spray, or opening it more…that may help the way its spraying


C0-signing on Targets spray bottle, its angle so it fits comfortable in your hair and it sprays not drips.


I actually use the Goody Ouchless barrette instead the the butterfly clips, they are easier to use and it doesnt tangle or trap my hair in the teeth! And Walgreens recently had them buy 2 for $2 with a $2 dollar register reward = free!


I love them…just bought my first one the other day. I like that it holds secure, but you feel absolutely no pulling or tension. I need more colors and sizes immediately!!!! I




A journal though? Really?? Naturals are doing way too much. It’s not that serious. o_O

Annie L.

People keep food journals to track nutrition gains and fitness journals to track weight, and even journal their menstrual cycles all in the name of conscientious living.

Why not a journal to track the health of your hair too; how it responds to product and styling and how best to spend your hard-earned money?


Co-sign. Journals are an especially good idea for naturals who are just getting started on the road to salon independence. I think photo journals are good as well for documenting particular styles as well as INFREQUENT length checks (every 6 months to a year IMO; YMMV).

Once you get the hang of your hair, journaling becomes less important IMO.


I never really thought of it as a journal but I have basically kept one. I love looking back and revisiting styles that I’d never be able to recreate otherwise!


I like your examples. I agree that a hair journal could be beneficial for many because you can keep track of what you’re doing.

Why is that a difficult concept to understand Anoychick?


Yeah… why not? Some people need to record things to remember. It’s a great way to keep track of what product combinations work best together. Don’t knock it til you try it.

Roger THAT

OK, I am MAD at Snoops purse. lol


You’re just mad at the purse? I’m mad at the whole image. Lol.


I was soooo hoping he was holding that for his wife…or whomever and got caught by a camera.

I can see him with a bonnet though…lol. He’s nutz enough to do it.

Annie L.

Now you know that’s his murse 🙂


I kinda sorta agree with everything here. I wouldn’t say I have a “hair journal” per se. When it comes to styles I like online, I like the webpage && have a hair folder. As for YouTube I have liked tooo many videos that are favorited && for myself I just take pics & store them.

Bobby Pins OMG. you can never have enough of them!!


It isn’t a tool but more of a mindset : PATIENCE. 🙂 My other one is a cute headband.


I used to use butterfly clips, but they break too quickly. I like the croc clips from Sallys. They hold more hair more securely. They cost more but you don’t have to replace them as often.


Everything on the list plus what the ladies before me have stated. I use my phone for the camera and journal. I’d add headbands or scarves…some days your hair just won’t act right. They may not be necessary for styling or detangling…but a cute headband or a scarf twisted in the right way might keep you from grabbing the clippers and shaving your hair off!!!


I have started an online journal on Pinterest! This way, I know how to style my hair and what I have done! I need to start adding dates to the styles tho…


Amen to that! lol


I would like to add a good mirror and a pair of hair scissors/shears to this list! I think the mirror is obvious (admire your awesome self!) but the scissors are essential because they keep me from ripping stubborn knots out! Now I can just cut the offending ball 🙂

Alice in Nappyland


A camera is a must, and 2 mirrors. Need to see what’s happening in the back. I didn’t realise how important a journal was until i started using one.

Curly Hair Extensions

I think so, and I think you can write a more detailed article, I will follow you!


you’re right about the camera and the mirrors. i started locs again in nov, this time sisterlocks and i’ve really enjoyed taking pics of my progress. i record what products i like. i’ve written a couple of essays for my personal records but the photojournal with my sisterlocks has been really fun for me.


This list pretty much sums up my tool belt!
I used to use spray and applicator bottles, but have since abandoned those. I could never really get hip to using them.

Another tool I would add to the list are my hair SCISSORS!! I take those bad boys everywhere when I’m doing my hair — in the shower, detangling sessions, and on the couch when twisting up my hair.


+1 on the hair scissors! Mine go everywhere as well.

Keisha's Friend

How do you become a style icon????????

The Natural Haven

I think you should email with style icon as the subject