Thursday, December 27, 2012

The NEW New Year Plan

Eh, so I’m feeling pretty lazy about yarn braids and I’m not really ready to have my hair covered/braided up for six weeks, especially since it’s been feeling so soft. So for the next three months I plan on initiating a bunning challenge beginning January 1 and going until April 1. I currently mudwash once a week and that works fine for me, especially since I plan to workout more consistently, but if possible I’d like to stretch that to two weeks because I’m going to try out roller setting as a way to stretch my hair before bunning. I’ve never roller setted so this will be an experiment, but I plan on trying it first by sitting under the dryer on cool and then seeing how my hair turns out with just air drying. I plan on bunning seven days a week and only detangling/really manipulating my hair once a week.
During the week, most likely every other day I will change the position of the bun by removing my banana clip, applying my sulfur mix to my scalp and massaging for a bit and then putting the hair back up. I apply the mix every other day so that’s when I’ll redo the bun. I will also spritz my ends and seal on these days as well. I know it still sounds like manipulation but I’m hoping I won’t run my fingers through my hair during this processes and keep everything as a sort of smoothing motion.
For my buns I predominately use banana clips and have a two strand flat twist in the front since my bangs are too short to bun. I make a ponytail with the banana clip and split that into two, then two strand twist the two halves and pin them under. Nothing fancy but it works for me. I’ll be doing high buns as my fancier style. When not in a banana clip I use the goody ouch less flex barrettes to make a ponytail and then just pin the hair under. I have a good feeling about this method and I’m going to continue my Lunatips trimming schedule, and trim my hair every three months or four months( three or four times a year). Since I’m bunning until April 1, I might go ahead and trim every four months and trim my hair in early April. I’ll keep you all update on my progress and hope to ideally gain an inch by April 1, if I have very little breakage and if my hair grows a half inch per month, then I should be looking at an 1.5  inches…and if I trim of a quarter of an inch, it’s still a decent amount of retention. My bangs should be nearing my chin by that point…if bunning fails me I’ll reconsider those yarn braids. Oh yeah in addition to setting my hair, I want to steam more often. If I’m washing every two weeks I’ll steam before each wash, if it’s once a week then I’ll steam every week.

Here’s today’s bun, my trusty banana clip with two twists pinned under to form the bun and my flat twist in front. The two bottom corner pictures is my hair from yesterday. The hair was split in half and I used two good hair clips. One on the top part to form a half up half down look, and then one on the bottom to pull all the hair together. It was the only way to fit these on my hair. I then tucked the hair under and pinned to form a bun. I’ll probably do this style a lot during the challenge too to give myself some variety….it’s be nice to be able to bun without needing bobby pins to hold down all the shorter pieces…

Saturday, December 22, 2012

End of year hair and how the Grinch stole Conditioner

Well I'm finally really claiming shoulder length and blew out my hair two weeks ago in order to trim. Since then I've been wearing twist outs and they've been working out, but as usual I'm getting tired of my hair and styling it all the time.

For the last three weeks I haven't used a single bottle of conditioner on my hair after washing. In fact I've only got one bottle left and it's sitting in a duffle bag. Instead of conditioner I've been prepooing with oils and either baggying or steaming for a bit, finger detangling/comb detangling, twisting my hair and then washing. I've had a few rough detangling sessions (I wore small twists with a braided root for a week...terrible take down). I've gotten back into strictly finger detanlging and the key I've found it to keep my hair stretched and finger detangle every few days instead of once a week since my hair sheds a ridiculous amount.

I'm going to continue to wear my twist outs until the end of the year but the first weekend in January I plan on putting in yarn braids and leaving them in 4-6 six weeks. I'm going to try to protective style for the next six months with this style and see how my hair fairs. I plan on taking two week breaks in between sessions. If my hair thrives, I may push this challege to a year. As many of you know I'm trying to grow my hair longer for my wedding in May of 2014.

My hair currently measure 5.5 inches in the very back, six inches on the sides, 7.5ish inches at the crown, and 6.5 inches in the front. If my yarn braids/protective style (if yarn braids fail me I'll switch to bunning five days a week) I should reach APL by the end of next year (more if I'm lucky). If I'm really really lucky, I'll reach BSL by the time the wedding rolls around, but seriously I'll be happy with APL. If I make that goal I'll let you guys know what I'm thinking about for wedding hairstyles.

 To help me with my growth I'm upping my water intake, stopping viviscal and switching to Priveta for three months to six months (just to see how it work). I also got a sulfur based castor oil mix to apply to my scalp three times a week. I've been cleansing with my mud wash, but once in the yarn braids I'm going to switch to using my newest Bobeams bar. I also plan on working out more consistently to help with the hair growth by running on MWF and doing my Jillian Michaels TTH and maybe Saturday. Since I'll be working out consistently, I will continue with washing my hair once a week. I'm also challenging myself to steam once a week, even in braids, with coconut or olive oil.

I'll keep you all updated with my progress but not very often. I'll come on here and post shots of my hair and how my hair is fairing only after I remove a set of yarn braids for my two week break period. For pictures of how I style my hair, my instagram is asvillafana.

Other than that my hair has been feeling pretty good. It's shedding more than I would like, so I might try taking garlic supplements again but we'll see. Here's to great growth in 2013!

Hair shots before I put in the yarn braids.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Challenge Mostly Complete

Hey Folks! So I actually kept up with the frequent cowashing...averaging about four to five times a week. Around Veteran's Day weekend I stopped for a few days and then went back to it...took another break because I wanted to rock loose twists for Thanksgiving...and then went back to cowashing.

Now in the beginning my hair really thrived and I do think my hair likes cowashing/getting wet daily. But some time after Veteran's Day my hair started getting a little more tangled and single strand knots were popping up all over the place. I freaked out for a second and then realized that I haven't properly trimmed my hair since...June I believe and for me I know that I've got to trim within the two to three month range. I'm coping with the tangles for now because I want to trim on December 10 because I'm going to start following the Lunatips method of trimming the hair. I'll be doing Omega 2 which is supposed to increase hair growth...we'll see how it goes. So until then I'm going to continue to cowash until I run out of conditioner (which should be soon). I'm down to 1/4 full bottle of Tressame Naturals, 1/4 bottle of Qhmet Biologics Cocoa Tree Detangling Ghee, 1/2 a bottle of Kinky Curly Knot Today, 1/2 a bottle of Koils by Nature Cocoa Deep Conditioner, and finally 1/2 a bottle of Desert Essences Coconut Conditioner....oh and a full bottle of some Sunny Isle Conditioner that has way too much protein to use regularly and might be getting tossed. So why am I getting rid of conditioner? Well....I'll explain that in a later post, I promise.

So what are my next plans and what is December's challenge? Well I'm not really planning anything for December...might just wear twist outs and see how far I can stretch the style without retwisting...if not that then I might put in some mini twists after my trim since the hair will be fresh and knot free...but then that kinda ties in to January's challenge (hint hint).  Who knows what I'll do but I'm definitely thinking about something to give me a break from my hair. I'm still not seeing a whole lot of retention which tells me I'm doing something wrong...I just don't know what. While I have loved the daily cowashing, I'm getting super tired of touching my hair every day, waiting for it to try and then putting it into a bun. Just feels like too much and hey, maybe that's why I didn't see a whole lot of retention from this challenge.

Anyway I'll let you guys know what I end up doing. I know it won't be extensions because...well I just don't want to put any in (not to mention the fiancé would hate it).

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Let's Get this Self Challenge Started

I'm back to give you pics of my official length check and what not. I've actually been following this little self challenge of mine for about a week and a half now. After my workouts I've been cowashing with Shea Moisture Black Soap Conditioner and while it's not super slippery, I still manage to do some decent light finger detangling with it.

I've been finger detangling every time I cowash because I feel like if I don't, I will end up with more tangles. After rinsing and getting out of the shower, I usually apply some oil and twist my hair so that my hair can air dry for a bit before I put it in a bun for the evening. The last few days I've actually worn a combination of braids or twists pulled back into a little bun, but for some reason my twists/braids look super fuzzy after a day so I get a little frustrated with them, plus I feel like my ends get more knots when I cowash in twists.

So yeah the challenge begins officially tomorrow, and I'm planning on cowashing after each work out, but every other day I plan on just rinsing my hair with water instead of actually applying any conditioner. I've been sealing with a mixture of olive oil mixed with castor oil and I think I'll start applying this mix to my scalp every other day or two. We'll see...I might save that idea for December's challenge.

Anyway here are some shots of my hair length, a few shots of my smallish braids that I had a few weeks ago, a few of my braid/twist buns and the main bun I wear. Mostly I do a banana clip bun (high or low) but if not that I've been using the goody hair clip. I'm trying not to do too many hair ties because I feel like it breaks my hair, but we'll see. I'll do a few product reviews soon and give some shots of my bunned hair...but I may not always do a bun, but I will make sure my hair is always in a style that has the ends tucked away.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

November Hair Challenge

Wow! It’s never been this long between postings. I’ve been pretty busy the last couple of weeks and just never thought to come on here and write. Since my last post I’ve done another henna session, some steaming sessions, rocked small braids (using my own hair) for a week and cowashed five days in a row. I’m still taking my Viviscal and will continue to take it until June 2013, which will make a year for me. In addition I’ve stopped applying Jamaican Black Castor Oil to my scalp and don’t apply any oils to my scalp. My scalp has been less itchy recently and I’ve started applying aloe vera gel to my scalp while I deep condition.
I’m on here to talk about my self-challenge for the month of November. While my hair is feeling pretty good, I realized that I started noticing more growth/retention when I was wearing WnGs only. When I did a WnG I usually could get second and sometimes third day hair out of it before cowashing and restyling. Most often I cowashed every other day, just because I liked refreshing my style frequently. While the WnG did contribute to more single strand knots, the constant moisture benefited my hair a lot and I finally started to see that growth I’ve been wanted and can officially claim shoulder length hair in the back (the sides and front have a while to go still). I’ve decided that I want to get back into the habit of cowashing regularly, particularly on the days I work out. I sweat pretty heavily and most of that sweat is on my scalp. My roots will literally be very damp after a workout. In the past I would just deal with the itching this caused and continue to wear whatever style I was rocking at the time. I can’t do that anymore. I just feel way to gross after a workout to let my sweating scalp dry and remain dirty until wash day. So the first part of my November challenge is to cowash after every workout, but do not cowash on days I don’t work out.
Now when I cowash, I don’t actually apply conditioner to my scalp. Instead I apply condition to the length of my hair after thoroughly saturating my hair in the shower. I massage my scalp first with just the water running against my hair. I apply enough pressure that I can loosen any dirty from my workout and let the water rinse away the sweat. I did this recently and my scalp feels pretty good afterwards. After I rinse the conditioner, I lightly finger detangle and apply castor oil/olive oil to my ends while in the shower before twisting my hair into about six or eight twists. Then I just let it air dry for the night and place my hair into a bun before I go to sleep (I usually flat twist my bangs because it doesn’t quite reach back into the bun yet, on cowash days I might not even remove the flat twists, that way I can keep the manipulation to a minimum). By then my hair is mostly dry.
And that brings me to the second party of my challenge. For November I am not going to wear my hair out at all, nor will I wear two strand twists or braids. I am going to wear my hair in a bun the entire month, following the routine above. On the days I don’t cowash, I might not even remove the bun at all (assuming it doesn’t look too crazy). To prevent breakage I will make sure that my banana clip isn’t too tight and that I alternate the location of the bun each week (high, low, middle, side, etc). On wash days I will steam/deep condition as normal, cleanse and put my hair back into a bun. I wash weekly, but if the frequent cowashing/scalp rinsing works out; I could probably stretch that to two weeks. Hopefully this challenge will allow me to retain my entire half inch of growth (assuming my hair grows half an inch…I’ll measure my hair on the first of November to get an accurate growth rate). I’m excited for my challenge but I’m going to look sooooo boring the month of November. Thank goodness for big earrings and headbands. I’ll come back on the first with my measurements.

Friday, September 21, 2012

WnG turned Braidout?

Hey folks. Quick post. I’ve been rocking a WnG since Tuesday (Sept 11) and last night (Wednesday 13th) I decided to do three flat/corn row braids in the front since my bangs were beginning to lose definition. I part my hair on the right so I had two braids going to the left and one braid going to the…they weren’t the prettiest braids since my flat braiding skills suck, but they worked for me. The rest of the hair I spritzed and put into a bun. In the morning I let the steam from the shower refresh my WnG and fluffed, leaving the braids in to function as a headband. I wore it like that to my first job but pulled the back into a puff for job number two, but for some reason upon arriving to work I decided I wanted to remove my braids…so I did. I wasn’t expecting much and planned on pulling the front back into a sort of hump and the rest of the hair in a puff. Except the definition was awesome! My bangs had some hang time and were curly/wavy from the WnG and braids. I left the hair out to hang in front of my face and pulled up into a bun (the fluffy buff looked weird with the defined bangs).
 I’m definitely going to have to play with this in the future. It would be great in the colder weather for those folks that wash and style on the weekends, and try to have minimal manipulation during the week. If you don’t want to cowash and restyle (especially if it is too cold out) you can just spritz the hair and corn row your WnG, two strand flat twist, or twist/braid regularly. I would apply a lot of product to do this. The water and maybe a little oil or butter to seal just the ends should be good. In the morning unbraid/twist and fluff. You’ll have a lovely hybrid of a WnG plus braid out, with the added bonus of more length since the braids would have stretched out your shrunken WnG. Normally I cowash every other day when wearing WnGs, but with this I could definitely see myself styling on Sunday (wash day), wearing the WnG up until Wednesday (could be in a puff that day) and Wednesday night braid it up and rock a WnG turned braid out the rest of the work week.

Maintaining a Twist Out: Multiple Days

Hey Folks!

Day 1
Day 3
So I lasted washed my hair with my Terressentials Mudwash on Tuesday and was going to do a full detox but my hair felt awesome that second day and I didn't think more washing was necessary. Since then my scalp hasn't been itchy at all. In addition I've stopped applying JBCO to my scalp. For the time being I'm not going to be massaging any oil into my scalp except for the days I'm steaming, and I rinse my hair afterwards so oil won't be sitting on my scalp for days at a time. Anyway, moving on to the topic of this post.

Tuesday night, after my hair dried a bit in braids throughout the day, I decided I wanted to twist my hair with 100% aloe vera gel (the kind I have is from Wholefoods) and pure Shea butter. I had my hair in about in about 8 braids which became 16 twists. To each section I applied a little aloe vera gel for moisture (my  hair loves this stuff) and for a little hold. On top of this I applied a little Shea butter and finger detangled before twisting. To twist I began by flat twisting the roots which creates more definition for me. My hair felt really soft and the Shea butter made my strands so shiny! I didn't pin down the twists to stretch them because I didn't feel like sleeping with bobby pins in my hair. I just put on my satin bonnet and hit the sack.

The next morning I applied a little of my oil mix to my hands and removed each twist, taking care not to separate the hair too much. My hair felt very soft and light (a little Shea butter goes a long way) and the definition was awesome. I haven't been this happy with a twist out in a while. That night I just lightly spritzed my hair with aloe vera juice and water, rubbed on a little Shea Butter to seal and put my hair into two low buns using satin scrunchies and taking care not to mess with my hair too much. I did two buns because My bangs don't make it back into just one. On top of this I put on my scarf and went to bed. The next morning I removed the scrunchies gently, spritzed my hair with water/aloe vera juice and shook my head, letting my hair fall naturally and fluffing a bit to get the shape right. My definition was just as awesome as day 1! I never get good second day hair on a twist out. Even when I use gels, my twist out just fell flat after one day. The second day felt soft, moisturized, and not greasy at all (which can happen when I use too may different oils/butters to seal). Again that evening I spritzed, smoothed on Shea butter, put in two buns, and tossed on my scarf. And again the next morning I spritzed, shook my hair and fluffed. The definition was still awesome! Third day hair, who knew! For a change in style I pinned the top part of my hair back with two jaw clips and put on a stretchy headband.    The great thing about this third day hair is that I know I'm going to get fourth day hair! I'm going to do the same night time method tonight. My hair is getting a little more stretched and big, but I love that. I plan on doing a henna treatment sunday or just steam with some oils, and retwist. Just had to tell you that maintaining a twist out is possible and super low manipulation!
Day 3

Day 1

Day 2

Day 2

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

One Month Trial of a Super Simple Regimen Using Minimal Products.

Since becoming natural I’ve been obsessed with getting longer, bigger hair. Well as you all can see it’s a very, very slow journey and sometimes I feel like I will never reach my goals. But, no matter, I’ve got my eye on the prize and plan on reaching my goals and to do that it all starts with a good regimen, healthy diet, and plenty of exercise.
I’ve finally replenished my Terressentials Mudwash and decided to go with Lavender, Lemon and I got the Cool Mint to use on my itchy scalp. I’ve decided I’m going to adopt a very, very simple regimen for the next thirty days and it’s following a similar routine to Youtuber Naptural85. Like her I love the Mudwash and get great results with it, but unlike her I use conditioners, gels, etc. So I’ve decided to give her routine a try for the next thirty days. She only washes once a month. I did that today and the Cool Mint made my scalp feeling tingly and refreshed. I’m not itchy at all. Her sole styling products are her homemade creamy shea butter mix, her hair and body oil, water and occasionally flaxseed gel. I’m not going to make her shea butter mix yet, but I will be using plain, unrefined shea butter. I do have a batch of her hair and body oil that I will use, and I don’t feel like making flaxseed gel so if I need gel I’ll use straight up pure aloe vera gel.
Her styling regimen is pretty simple too. She mostly wears a twist out and keeps her hair stretched, which I know keeps single strand knots out of my hair. She’s also able to stetch a twist out a few days by bunning her hair at night before needing to retwist. I’m going to give this a try too.  (She does other styles but I’m going to stick with a twist out and she “washes” once a month but does wet her hair in the shower and while I may wet my hair if it’s feeling griming after a workout, I’m going to refrain from washing. I will be deep conditioning using natural oils and my steamer weekly).
Now some of you may wonder why I’m bothering with this because what works for one, may not work for another, but I LOVE the simplicity of her routine. She doesn’t have products cluttering her space and she knows the results are guaranteed every time. She knows exactly what’s going on her hair; there are no extras or unnatural ingredients. I want that too. I want to be able to have a total of three products on my dresser and know that I don’t need anything else.  I don’t mind experimenting and her regimen doesn’t seem harmful so I’m going to give it a try. Thirty days can’t hurt. I’m going to count tomorrow as day one because I plan on trimming my ends….fresh start and all that jazz.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Henna and Curl Loosening

I’ve used Henna on and off since becoming natural and never really had a specific regimen. I used it when I felt like it, for either the strengthening or color changing perks. Usually I did a henna treatment every three to six months. Recently I started doing a Henna Gloss biweekly. For my Henna Gloss I mix about 50 grams of Nupur Henna with a half cup of green tea and mix it. To this I add a good amount of conditioner, most recently I used Jessicurl Deep Conditioner. I add some olive oil, castor oil and any other oil I feel like using and mix this all together until it is smooth like pudding. Then I cover with saran wrap and set aside for a few hours. The great think about a Henna Gloss is that the conditioner makes the application and rinsing process a lot smoother. I apply Henna to clean, damp or dry hair in sections, smoothing it onto my hair. Any extra Henna I freeze. After I apply I put on a plastic cap, a bandana, scarf and sometimes a hat or my TurbieTowel (yeah taking no chances) and hit the sack. Because I work 60 hour weeks and have to get up early (I never seem to Henna on the weekends when I have more time) my overnight henna treatment is usually about 6 hours. In the morning I rinse my hair in the kitchen sink first, getting most of the Henna out and using my time in the shower to get everything that I missed. After rinsing I apply a light conditioner like Giovanni Tea Tree or Kiss My Face Whenever conditioner, let that sit on my hair while I shower and rinse before getting out which gets any last bit of henna left over. Then I just style accordingly!
Henna Glosses will also give a red tint to your hair, but it might not be as intense if you just mix up your henna gloss and apply right away. I let mine sit longer for dye release. Once my hair gets to a shade I like I might just do a quick, direct application and leave on for only an hour. Or if you don’t want the red you can add Indigo to your Henna. I’ve done this in the past and kept a nice brown shade of hair, but for now I’m content with plain ‘ol henna.  Before I get married I’ll incorporate the two step henna and indigo process for darker hair.
Now the Nupur Henna seems to give a redder tint than others but it does have other herbs in it like Hibiscus which might be a factor. I’ve used the Jamilla Henna before and didn’t get quite such an obvious tint. I like the Nupur though…it didn’t seem to rinse as easy but maybe I just need more conditioner next time.
Since starting my biweekly henna treatments I have noticed less shedding during wash day. I also haven’t experienced any extra dryness which can happen with full strength henna treatments (sans conditioner). Today, while washing my hair, I realized my hair felt….different. My hair felt easier to finger detangle, smoother, and soaked up water easier. It also seemed to hang more while wet and while it still shrunk up for my current WnG…it feels and looks different to me. The hair didn’t feel knotted while applying my products and everything just went on smoother for me. Could this be curl loosening? My texture doesn’t look different (the back is looking kind of straight when wet but waves/curls when dry and doesn’t look too different than the rest of my hair).  Plus my WnG dried fairly quickly too.  Since my hair is super tightly, coily, curly, I’m not too worried about Henna loosening because I don’t think there is any way henna would ever make my hair straight. If anything I’m kind of embracing the thought of looser curls. Already I’m noticing less single strand knots and if it means easier detangling and better looking WnGs then I’m all for it. I don’t want straight hair, but manageable hair and sometimes kinky, coily hair is tough! I’m going to stick with my biweekly henna treatments and see how my hair fairs. If biweekly seems like too much then I will switchy to monthly or every six weeks. All I know is that I definitely want to keep Henna as part of my hair care routine!
Today’s WnG combo was Paul Mitchell the Conditioner and Eco Styler Clear.  I freakin’ love the way the Paul Mitchell pairs with Eco Styler, but I hate that it has parabens! If I’m going to go natural/organic I gotta find a way to get a WnG that looks like the ones I get with this combo, only without all the bad stuff!  Or maybe I might just have to except this one product in my life….decisions decisions.

Loose Twists

I was perusing through Youtube the other day and one channel I subscribe to is UrbanBushBabes. I love their channel and they give a lot of great information pertaining to the care of natural hair. Another Youtuber I follow is Alicia James, a gal with fabulous hair and a fabulous voice. Anyway I noticed that both Youtube channels mentioned something I hadn’t tried before; loose twists. In the case of UrbanBushBabes, Cipriana puts her in about 150 loose twists and this allows her to have better styling options with minimal hair damage (seriously check her out, she has some fab hairstyles). Alicia James also does the loose twists, although hers aren’t as loose as Cipriana’s.
Anyway so what are loose twists? Well basically it’s a two strand twist but instead of making tight two strand twists (meaning you twist in the same spot and don’t move down until you can’t twist in the spot anymore) you loosely twirl the two strands. When I did them I started tight at the base of the twist and then basically moved my fingers to the end of my strands as I continued the twists and then twisted/twirled the ends with a little product so that they wouldn’t unravel. As expected the twists puffed right up, which is exactly what I wanted! The puffy looking twists can give the illusion of thicker hair (especially if your hair is thin) and the added bonus is twisting doesn’t take as long. Plus you can wear them down, style them in updos, and kind of have the freedom of loose hair without the extra tangles and knots. Normally I like to do mini twists or small twists, but I hate the long process, the take down, and I always feel like some parts of my hair look too scalpy. The loose twists took about an hour and a half to do (it was my first time…and I was trying to twist while at work) and I loved how thick my hair looked. I think next time I will try to do them a little looser and maybe even a little smaller….we’ll see. I definitely think this is a style that could last a week or two before you would have to restyle and restyling would be easy. Just take a twist down, finger detangle, rub some product through and twist back up; do you whole head. This means no yanking a comb through your hair and detangling should be easier and you should have less breakage. I didn’t wash in these twists, but next time I might try and braid the twists into about eight loose braids (probably band the ends since my hair is short) and wash and condition in the braids, rinsing every product out thoroughly. I would leave the braids in overnight to dry and the next day do the twist by twist finger detangling while at the same time applying a leave-in and sealing. That way your manipulation each week is super low.
I will say that this style should be done on stretched hair. Either an old twist out, braid out, curlformers, bantu knots or you can tension blow dry (this is what I did). The stretched look ensures less tangles and knots, plus the twists look better when they puff out on stretched hair. I only kept these in for three days (yeah…ya’ll know me and my itchy scalp and inability to keep a style in for very long) but could have gone longer if I didn’t feel the need to change my hair style. They were so easy to put in, I wasn’t even mad. Currently I’m back in a WnG  but these twists will definitely come in handy in the colder months when I start wearing my beanies and such.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Twist Out Prep

Hey Folks,

Just wanted to come on here quick and say I took down my twist style yesterday and washed my hair. I was going to henna gloss overnight but opted to just deep condition instead. I did cowash the style once and of course it got fuzzy but didn't look too bad.

Anyway today I'm prepping my hair for a twist out tomorrow. I have the front flat twisted into a headband and the back I twisted with Oyin Hair Dew and sealed with Oyin Burnt Sugar Pomade. I followed Naptural85's twist out method and pulled the twists around my head and pinned down, that way the take down tomorrow will yield a nice stretched twist out. But...I can't exactly go to my evening job looking like a crazy person so I put a satin scarf on the back half of my head to cover the twists and on top of this I put on my snood. This thing has been a life saver. With two jobs I can't always freely style my hair and most of my styles need to be prepped during the afternoon in between jobs but still allow me to look normal at work. The snood is perfect for covering up half done twists or a raggedy twist out until you have time to work on your hair. It's simple and stylish and even a little bit retro. I got mine from and I'm thinking I might need to get a few more colors...winter is coming after all and my evening job isn't going to allow me to wear my cute threadmill a snood will have to do. Plus it's considered a protective style option too!

Cowashed twists...they actually stayed put

Yeah...I gotta get better at flat twisting...but this works for now

Thin edeges...castor oil and viviscal have greatly improved them though

And the results!


Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Product Review: Bobeam’s Cocoa Rhassoul Clay Detox Shampoo Bar

Ya’ll know that I’m a fan of the Terressentials Mudwash, but I’ve been out of this stuff for a few months now and I haven’t repurchased yet because I had like a million shampoo bars to use up and some other cleansers. Plus I live an hour from the Terressentials store and haven’t quite gotten around to getting out there.
I plan on making the Terressentials my holy grail, everything I could ever need item…but until then I’m experimenting with other things…most particularly Bobeam’s shampoo bars. I love the shampoo bars and how they make my hair feel, although a few of them do give my hair a weird feeling post shower. This is usually the case with shampoo bars and an apple cider vinegar rinse usually takes care of the problem but I am way too lazy for that so I just leave the hair alone and it feels fine enough to me.
Last week I tried the J’Rels Detox Bar and liked it but wasn’t in love with it. This bar has Kanolin Clay as opposed to bentonite or Rhassoul.  I only have experience with those two clays and get good results with both. The Terressentials has bentonite clay, while my Anita Grant Conditioning cures have Rhassoul clay.  Both clays give me good results. I love bentonite clay more, but Rhassoul clay imparts a little more softness usually.
 Today I washed with the Cocoa Rhassoul bar. First let me say that this bar looks like I could eat it and smells just as good. It has actually cocoa powder in it and I’ve discovered recently that my hair detangles pretty well with a combo of cocoa butter and jojoba oil. I get pretty good deep conditioning with this combo too. Anyway, I used this bar to cleanse my hair today in order to prep for a henna gloss this evening. Prior to cleansing I section my hair in four and used the Qhmet Biologics Cocoa Tree Detangling Ghee to finger detangle. Ummm and I also used my Denman too. I know, I know, shame on me but I had tons of tangles and my fingers weren’t working through them all, but whatever. I didn’t lose too much hair and detangling was a breeze with the Qhmet (review to come later). I hopped in the shower and going a section at a time I lathered up the shampoo bar and rubbed it along my roots and then along the hair shaft (used a lot of castor oil this week). I did this for each section and then let this sit on my hair and scalp while I did other shower things. I mostly let it sit to see if the Rhassoul clay in this bar would give me some additional softening and to treat my seborrhea dermatitis a little (clay seems to be helping actually). After a few minutes I rinsed my hair section by section and finger detangled a little more. Ahhh my hair felt nice. Soft and my fingers were combing through my hair easily. Plus I didn’t have that waxy, weird feeling that has happened with other Bobeam’s shampoo bars. My scalp also felt nice and clean after the wash and my scalp felt soothed and not itchy at all (+1 for that). 
This was my first impression with the bar and I will use it again just to confirm its awesomeness. I definitely think I could keep this bar as a holy grail and it’d be great for travelling purposes or quick wash purposes when the mud wash would be just too inconvenient.
I still have the Cheris Hibiscus bar to try, the Shealoe, and I just received the Vashti Ayurvedic bar….not sure when I will try them considering I want to stick with the Rhassoul one for a bit, but I’ll let you know when I do!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Two Strand Twist Style

Hey ya'll! Since I got my scalp feeling good, I figured I shouldn't tamper with it too much with cowashing and WnGs, so I started twisting. No I didn't do mini twists, I would say these are on the smaller size of medium.

Before styling I did an over night henna treatment and rinsed Friday morning. I cowshed with my Curl Junkie Curl Rehab (shameful I know...but hey I'm using stuff up). The henna rinsed very well. Sometimes after rinsing I'd scratch my hair two days later and have henna remain under my nails. Not this time. After I got out of the shower I applied Oyin Hair Dew and Oyin Burnt Sugar Pomade. I've had both of these products for a while and I don't know why I haven't been using them. They smell soooo good. I love them and might have to keep them in my simple arsenal that I have in mind. I also love the Oyin Shine and Define too and might pick up more of that once some stuff runs out. Anyway I lightly blow dried my hair using the tension method on cool. I didn't dry my hair completely, but it wasn't very damp either. I put my hair in some chunky twists and pulled back with a banana clip. I was able to get out the door on time to work thankfully.

Once home from my first job I decided I wanted to style my hair in twists that I could keep in for a week. I used the Original Moxie Shapeshift to twist. My hair was looking strong and shiny and as I started twisting I noticed they seemed plumper and firmer too. I did something a little different this time around since I just didn't want a bunch of twists hanging straight down as usual, so I did a sort of flat twist style in the front swooping sideways and in the back I twisted straight down. I also did a braided base first for the twists in the back and I think this will keep the fuzzies at bay. In the nape area, which is slowly becoming very very straight for some reason, I braided instead of twisting because this area tends to unravel quickly. Anyway, this weekend I'm wearing the hair down but this style also allows for some pinned up looks that I'll try throughout the week and next weekend I'll remove and wear a twist out for a day or two and then...start the wash process again and maybe twist the hair into a different style.