Hair Rehab – How to Rehabilitate Your Hair

Hair health activist and style alchemist Reneé Potgieter is on a mission to get us all to fall back in love with our natural locks. In her 20 years spent in the hair business, Reneé has watched as we cut, coloured, curled, and crimped the natural beauty out of our hair. She also learnt that there is a gentler, more accepting way for us to uncover the hair of our dreams.

This gentle approach begins with allowing our hair to heal; letting mother nature take the metaphorical brush and breaking our cycle of chemical dependency to begin the rehabilitation process. To start our holistic hair care journey, we must first understand the mistakes we are making and embrace our hair’s true nature.

How do you know if your hair needs rehabilitation?

Just like our skin, our hair will display signs of ageing and damage if we mistreat it. Dullness, build-up, dry scalp, dandruff, oiliness, hair loss and sensitivity are all common side effects of long-term chemical dependency. These symptoms can be caused by a wide variety of sources including a build-up of silicone on the hair shaft, compromised porosity and elasticity, pH imbalance, a nutrient deficiency in the body, a medical condition such as a thyroid imbalance, genetics, and physical reactions to the chemicals in your hair products.

Paying attention to your body and taking a minimalist approach to products and styling will give your hair time to find its natural equilibrium again. Everyone’s hair is already uniquely beautiful. It simply needs the time to recover, which happens at different speeds for different people.

What is the Hair Rehab process?


First, you need to detox from all the chemicals you come into daily contact with. Everything you use including shampoos, conditioners, oils, silicones, heat-protectors, and even bubble baths will have an impact on your hair. Have a look through the ingredient lists and exclude any products with terrifying, unpronounceable words and alcohol.

Deep Cleanse

Give your hair a helping hand with a deep cleanse that will remove any chemical build-up and expose the natural state of your hair. You cannot begin to properly nourish your hair until you have broken the build-up shield on the hair shaft and scalp, as any nutrients will be prevented from making their way into your hair.

Deep Nourish

Elasticity and porosity are the building blocks of great hair and after our deep cleanse we need to feed our hair to encourage them. Natural nourishing treatments like oils, masks and conditioners that contain botanical elements will help your hair look and feel loved. Make sure to use premium grade products as they are most often not contaminated with other chemicals.

Take Care of The Cuticle Layer

All hair has a cuticle layer that must be nurtured and understood for happy, healthy hair. Sealing the cuticle locks in moisture and protects the keratin in the hair from exposure, improving the texture of your hair and prolonging your colour.

Limit Your Chemical Exposure

After all your hard work in detox and recovery, you need to cultivate healthier habits. Cleaner, more natural products, a minimal-heat approach, a nourishing diet, and being kind to yourself with your personal care regime all makes you a healthier happier person. Actively replacing unhealthy hair habits with a ‘less is more’ approach to heat and chemicals, helps the care you put into your hair shine through in your confidence.

No matter how long you have been using harsh methods, if you start with the basics and have patience, your hair will recover. To unveil your inner goddess will take time so be gentle with yourself and allow yourself to adjust and recover. You are already beautiful, and your ideal hair is waiting for you, with a gentle approach, a holistic plan and a little time, it is only a few simple steps away.

Editor’s note:
For more information and/or to arrange exclusive comment or a potential interview with Reneé Potgieter please contact:

Media Contacts:
Megan Nugent
M. 072 322 4138

Reneé Potgieter (Naturally Reneé) – Media Biog

Putting the Care back into Haircare:

Reneé Potgieter, hair health activist, colour alchemist and owner of Naturally Reneé, is on a mission to change the way beauty is perceived. As a society, we have developed a dependency on toxic products and processes which damage and disrupt the natural balance of our hair.

Reneé is determined to stop this madness by reminding us of one remarkably simple truth: we are already beautiful!

In her work, Reneé strives to teach us that if we accept and celebrate our natural hair we can cut, colour and style it, without sacrificing our hair health.

Her journey began in 1993 when she trained for 3 years under the renowned Carien Fensham in Johannesburg. After working and backpacking for 2 years everywhere from Turkey’s beaches, to hostels in London and salons in Europe, Reneé returned home to settle in Cape Town.

In 2000, after noticing that the industry was fundamentally flawed in how it approached hair for real women, she became an independent stylist. Since then she has trained and collaborated with many talented individuals, some of whom have opened sustainable salons of their own, and she continues to spread the message of a no-nonsense natural approach.

Education is key to Reneé’s operation which is why she equips her clients with the fundamental knowledge they need to break their dependency on chemicals. Her tenacity, integrity and intuition are sharper than her scissors, inspiring admiration, and gratitude from clients.

The biggest challenge Reneé faces daily is the cognitive dissonance between what her clients believe about chemical processes and the truth about how damaging toxins are to their hair and health. Although clients know that their hair has been damaged by chemicals, many have become overly attached to their unsustainable hair regimes. Reneé knows that by using her unique combination of skill and knowledge she can prove the natural way is always the better way.

When she is not challenging societal norms and spreading the message of self-love Reneé enjoys learning how to surf with her magnificent 8-year-old daughter, spending time and sharing great food and gorgeous wine with close friends, and growing herself through constant online education and can copious amounts of books.