The Best DIY Homemade Edge Control for Curly Hair
So...we never tried this recipe before.
We never attempted it, largely because I didn’t think it was possible to recreate it without all the nonsense most brands include in their products.
It’s a styler that lays down those stubborn baby hairs. People swear by its ability to regrow your edges.
Can you guess what it is?
Now, if you look at the ingredients label on most edge controls, they don’t even pretend to have good ingredients.
The first ingredient is water and then from ingredients 2-10, you can’t pronounce any of them.
At least with most natural products you can at least pronounce ingredients 1 through 5 with no problem, the other 10 may be synthetic, but at least they try.
Unfortunately, with most gels, and edge controls, they have a ton of synthetic ingredients.
So when I began mixing products, I started with all the ingredients that can lay down hair by themselves, it was just a matter of putting them together to form a viable edge control.
This mixture makes appx. 8 ounces of edge control.
- 1 cup of Distilled Water
- 1/4 cup Flaxseed Gel
- 1/4 cup Castor Oil
- 1/8 cup Raw Honey
- 1/8 cup Glycerin
- 1/2 tsp Xanthan Gum
- 20 Drops Fragrance (optional)
- Jar for storage
- Hand Whisk or Immersion Blender
- Cook Top & Small Pot
Step #1 Boil Flaxseed Gel
Boil 1 cup of Distilled Water. At boiling point (raging), add the Flax Seeds and give them a quick stir to make sure all the seeds are hydrated (touching water). Let the seeds boil until a white foam appears on the top of the gel. Watch the pot because the seeds sometimes boil over. This should take 5-8 minutes.
Strain the gel into a separate container.
Step #2 Mix Oil, Honey, Fragrance & Preservative
Next, add the Raw Honey, Castor oil, Fragrance, and Preservative (if you have some) and mix in a separate bowl. If you don't have the preservative at home, you can grab it here.
Use a whisk or immersion blender to mix the ingredients together.
Step #3 Mix Glycerin & Xanthan Gum
In a separate bowl add the Glycerin first, and sprinkle the Xanthan gum into the mixture. Use a spoon or cake spatula to fully hydrate the Xanthan Gum with the glycerin.
To fully hydrate something, means to make sure all the dry parts get wet with the liquid substance.
This will make for an easier emulsion process. Often times Xanthan Gum can clump, but this method will make sure there are no clumps in your mixture.
Side Note: This step is done differently in the video, but we revised the recipe once we knew a better way to mix the edge control.
Step #4 Combine All Ingredients
Next, add the Glycerin and Xanthan gum mixture to the honey and oil mixture. Use a whisk or an immersion blender to mix them. Next, add the Flaxseed Gel. At this point, it is best to use an immersion blender to ensure everything combines properly and has a smooth texture.
If you don't have one, use a hand whisk. Mix for appx. 5 mins.
Step #5 Storage
Once blended well, add mixture to jar and store in the fridge for 30 mins to an hour to cool. Leave it in the fridge if you have not added the preservative. This mix will last for 1-2 weeks without a preservative. If you have added the preservative, it will last for up to 6 months.
Step #6 Style Hair
On clean damp hair, apply the edge control to the desired area. Rub the edge control onto the damp hair with your hands first, and then follow up with a brush to control the frizz. Use a hair scarf for extra hold.
If you're busy like me, you don't have time to go shop for all these ingredients and ruin your kitchen with measuring a bunch of ingredients.
Save yourself some time and get the full recipe and materials pre-measured here.
It will take all of 15 minutes to make and NO MESS!
Flax Seed Gel
I've met very few curly/kinky women who didn't fall in LOVE with Flaxseed Gel after trying it for the first time. It's the most hydrating gel and TRULY defines your curls for the perfect wash n' go gel.
It adds great hold without making your hair crunchy. The problem is that the homemade version spoils after 2 weeks. But we created a ready to use version for the perfect wash n' go. You can check it out here.
This base is what makes your edge control have hold.
Everybody and their mama swears by Castor Oil.
Apparently, Castor Oil can control frizz, re-grow your edges, and revive the dead, jk.
So we had to include it in the edge control, it just wouldn’t be right without it.
I’ve heard of, well, I know people who have styled their entire head with honey and left it in for a month.
Her hair was so crunchy and hard the entire time she wore the style but it looked cute lol.
I’m not recommending this, I wouldn’t even do this myself, but I’ve seen it with my own two eyes.
Her style lasted for the entire month and her hair didn’t fall out, it actually grew.
Honey has so many benefits and one of them being hold.
I’m not suggesting you go out and do a twist out with Wildflower honey, but I’m just sharing that it is very versatile and effective.
This was the one natural ingredient we found in almost every edge control we researched.
Glycerin is a humectant, drawing moisture from the air into your hair.
It keeps this edge control from becoming crunchy but it’s thick consistency helps to lay down the hair.
Is a sugar that stabilizes cosmetics to keep them from separating.
What’s interesting is that you can actually make a gel with just Xanthan Gum.
If you peruse the interwebs, I’m sure you’ll find a few recipes.
The reason we didn’t make the gel out of ONLY Xanthan is because I didn’t want you laying your edges down with only sugar.
The fragrance we used is Apple Cinnamon but you can add any essential oil or fragrance you like. You only need 10 - 20 drops, so don't go overboard.
These ingredients, individually, can all lay down your edges, but just aren’t as effective by themselves.
Combining all of them will make a wonderful all natural edge control.
It would seem like mixing these ingredients would be super easy, but it wasn’t.
I went through 10 batches of failure before I found a mix that wasn’t too thin, didn’t leave a bunch of excess product, and actually laid down my edges.
I have 4b hair and my hair is pretty thick.
NOTE: The edge control texture is more like a paste, and less like the block of gel you may be used to. It doesn’t have the texture of a normal edge control, but it definitely has the results.
I kept adding too much water to the boiling process of the Flax Seed Gel, and as a result, I’d have way more gel than I actually needed to make the edge control.
So my first challenge was determining the perfect amount of gel I would need for an 8oz jar of edge control.
I went through several batches of gel until I found the perfect ratio of seeds to water before boiling.
I started using Guar Gum instead of Xanthan Gum.
Guar Gum is often used for thickening products, and can even aid in “slippage”, so I thought it would be perfect for the edge control.
However, if you’ve worked with Guar Gum before you know about the “fish eyes” problem.
No matter what I did, it kept leaving lumps in my products and wouldn’t blend correctly.
I had to switch out the thickener for Xanthan.
After more research, that’s when I learned that people sometimes make a Xanthan Gum gel.
I even tried Agar Agar. Agar Agar comes in the form of a powder and it helps to get the jelly texture that many edge controls favor.
These products don’t contain Agar Agar, but Agar Agar is an ingredient that not only thickens your mix but it makes it take the form of a jello.
When I added it, the mix looked perfect, BUT when I tried to put it on my hair, it sucked.
It left chunks of jello in my hair...not sexy at all.
So I had to remove it.
After finally having the perfect amount of water for the flax seed, switching out the Guar Gum for Xanthan Gum, and removing Agar Agar, I found an edge control I really liked.
I was so impressed with myself.
I was able to create an edge control with things you can find in your DIY kitchen.
And now you can enjoy it too!
TIP: You definitely want to refrigerate or add a preservative to this mix because if you don’t, the mix will swell and create a gooey monster. It sounds crazy but it looks kinda gross once it goes bad. I just wanted to warn you before you’re surprised at home.
Here is the preservative we offer, Optiphen PLUS.