Product


For anyone who is curious about how I keep up with my hair, this is what I’ve fallen into the habit of doing lately. First, the items:

Shampoo: Arganic Extra Virgin Olive Oil Infinite Moisturizing Shampoo.
I’m looking for a new bottle or a good replacement, as I am almost out. It’s sulfate-free!
Conditioner: Silkience Silk-Smooth Conditioner
I really like this conditioner! It’s cheap and works well. Also sulfate-free, but has alcohol. However, it has never made my hair feel  dry…
Rinse: Apple Cider Vinegar
I just filled my spray bottle and poured some vinegar and a little coconut oil. You can find a recipe anywhere!
Sprays: Water & Coconut Oil (picture of the coconut oil I used in this post)
Used for wetting dry hair that needs to be styled and for whenever I feel like my hair needs a little spritz.
Palmer’s Olive Oil Conditioning Spray Oil
I don’t use it too much. It smells weird, but my scalp likes it.
Rasta Locks & Twist No More Itch Gro Spray
For calming an itchy scalp in between washings!
Creams: Cantu Shea Butter Coconut Curling Cream
I mostly use it for moisturizing, haven’t tried it for curl definition next. Maybe next post? No… Next post will be how I bleach my hair!
Softee Indian Hemp Hair Grease
Can this be considered a cream? I know I shouldn’t use it, but it’s more convenient that oil.
Tools: Large-toothed comb
Paddle brush & boar bristle brush
Ponytail holders

Nearly every weekend, usually on a Friday I wash my hair. I start by parting my hair into four sections and repeating the same steps, one section at a time.

  1. Get section wet and spray down with ACV rinse. I concentrate mainly on my scalp because it helps control my itchy dry scalp.
  2. On shampoo days, I take a little of the Arganics and rub it through the section and my scalp. It’s sulfate free, so it doesn’t lather very much.
  3. Next (or first if I’m not shampooing that day) I use the Silkience conditioner. It smells like apples and completely eliminates the stink of the vinegar. Also, it doesn’t leave an overpowering smell of its own on your hair (probably because it’s cheap).
  4. I detangle with my large-toothed comb and sometimes brush it out.
  5. I then twist the section up and secure it with a ponytail holder.
  6. Wrap up in an old t-shirt to soak up excess water without over-drying or distressing hair.

Voila! My wash regimen. Styling is usually a bit more varied, of course, depending on the style. But my go to style lately has been twists or braids. I also do one section at a time here. This is how I go about it:

  1. I take a lock of hair and spray it with the coconut oil water mix if the hair has become too dry (like when I don’t do my hair on a wash day).
  2. Lightly grease the scalp around the lock (or the oil, if you’re a better person than me)
  3. The lock then gets a finger of the Cantu curling cream worked through it and brushed straight with the boar bristle brush. (I get a really pretty curling effect when I do this, but I’ve never let it stay like that. I ought to try one day!)
  4. Twist or braid (Or finger coil or bantu knot) the lock.

And then you would continue throughout the whole head with that. It’s very simple, but can be time consuming. Lately I’ve been making really large twists out braids and then pulling it into a ponytail in the morning. Sometimes I may undo them, sometimes not. It’s usually not very pretty or stylish, but it has been getting the job done, and I noticed today that my hair feels a lot softer and looks shinier and stronger.

Good luck, all! Tonight I’m going to start packing after I finish my hair. I’m moving next week! 🙂

I met a fellow product junkie today who made me realize I’ve been neglecting my blogging duties (again). She asked me about a product I was buying (more on that later) and since I haven’t used it yet, I directed her to my blog to check soon to see if I’ve posted about it. Of course, I have to be a regular poster in the first place for that to happen! Unfortunately, I gave her the wrong url…But she’ll figure it out…Right?

Anyways.

I took up an offer from a friend of mine to get my hair flat ironed. I haven’t had it done in quite a while, and I really wanted to see how long it was…So why not? I am primarily concerned about the health of my hair, rather than the length so I went in apprehensive and took defensive measures to protect against heat.

Meet two more friends of mine! Organic coconut oil and Garnier Fructis Blow Dry Perfector!

As you know, the new thing in the natural community is coconut oil, so I had to give it a try. I have used coconut oil based products before (Blue Magic Coconut Oil Hair Conditioner. You know the stuff!), but that was before going natural and before paying attention to my hair’s reaction to products. Coconut oil has anti-bacterial properties to prevent hair loss, moisturizes, and has a higher melting and boiling point than many oils, making it an ideal heat protectant. The Blow Dry Perfector contains argan oil, which is rich in omega-3s and is great for smoothing and straightening hair.

A few hours before it was to be straightened, I washed, treated with coconut oil, rinsed and then braided my hair after running the Fructis through it. My friend was a bit upset, because she wanted my hair wet so that it’d be easier to blow dry, and I hadn’t been able to rinse out some of the oil. So I had to wet my hair AGAIN and she blew it out….Mostly.

Then she went through most of my hair with my flat iron, and then decided it wasn’t hot enough. (Quote “I touched it and it didn’t even burn my hand!”) SO she went through again with her own, got tired and passed my head over to our other friend, who went through my head all over again! Needless to say, I was there for a while, but I had fun with them and got the result I wanted (They weren’t as pleased :D)

It was much longer than I thought. It moved when I walked. It bounced! I could toss it around or whip it out of my face. I was having so much fun! Best of all, my scalp didn’t itch at all (I think thanks to the coconut oil). I thought everything was going well until something odd happened…

People weren’t saying my hair looked ‘cool’ or ‘cute’ or ‘interesting’. They used words like ‘beautiful’ and ‘gorgeous’. I got hit on a lot more. I acted different, more confident. But that’s not what bothered me…What got me down is how much it took a toll on my naturalista psyche. I started questioning my natural beauty, wondering if I should just keep my hair straight. I just knew that people were like “Finally, that nappy-headed girl came to her senses!”

Then it rained, my hair puffed out like magic, and I finally did come to my senses! I was taking things way too seriously. It’s going to be a long time before the majority of people will cherish anything but long, straight hair. And that’s fine by me, it’s beautiful too. But so is natural hair! And so am I.

AND SO ARE YOU!

I was inspired to do mini-twists (my third try) again to get ready for my first real spring break vacation! Every year before this I’ve been a high schooler or stuck working a new job that I couldn’t take a week off from just yet. Well, my wonderful boyfriend and I saved up all the money we could and just…left. Haha, it was great! We brought friends, had a crappy hotel, fun, food and drinks…Oh, but you’re here about hair, right?

I don’t have any recent pictures, but here are some twist I’ve had before, as a reference.

Now, while shopping at the beauty supply store I came across this:

The famous ecostyler! I’ve heard a lot of good things and have seen it many tines, but this was the first time I decided to buy it because I knew exactly what I could do with it. You see, my scalp gets itchy. Everyday for most of my life, before and after going natural. So it had only been a few days to a week since I had these twists in and they were already looking fuzzy! This is why I decided to wash and moisturize my poor scalp (I also bought Jamaican Mango & Lime itch relief spray for good measure. Life saver!) and use the Ecostyler gel to help keep my twists intact. Take a look.

ECOSTYLER | WATER

(It’s the less frizzy looking side with the product) Not only did my hair naturally curl up because of the water, the Ecostyler held the twists, the curly ends, and even made it shinier! I was very pleased once it was dry and even slept on it multiple times without any problems.


I’ll stop gushing over how great this was for the beach…Eventually. Water, wind, humidity and sun did nothing to it. I could headbang to my boyfriend’s favorite dubstep songs (ew!) and it was very touchable.

It even looked cool and stylish as a twist out, as opposed to the twist out from the last mini-twists:

My only problem was that it didn’t turn into an awesome fro like my last two minitwists did. Must have been the ecostyler!

It was still cute and pretty durable. And a great protective style. After I combed it out nearly 3 weeks later, there was only minimal hair loss. (And for those wondering, I’m fairly certain I used pure Shea butter and cantu moisturizer for my initial twists)

Happy twisting, everyone!

(Hint hint! The next post may be about straight hair! ;])

Did you miss me? My laptop died, so my posts had to die with it. But everything is back up and running again! The next few posts will be a little old, but hopefully still valuable!

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Don’t get excited! Queen Helene and Cantu haven’t teamed up. I just ran out of oil for my treatment. 😀 By the way, this post has a lot of stuff going on. It starts like this with sad dry hair:

My hair was feeling a little stripped from clarifying it because I didn’t properly moisturize afterwards. I know, I’m terrible. To fix this, I had my good friend Kristin give me her leftover oil from her own treatment. I hoped I’d have better results than she did.
The three things you need for a hot oil treatment are hot water, oil, and a container that won’t melt! I heated up a jar of water in the microwave and let the tube of oil sit in it to get hot. I was worried the tip would get into the water and would flood the tube, but it floated nicely.

The process wasn’t very hard, though it was time consuming. After parting my hair in half, I took sections of my hair and distributed the oil. To help keep it out of the way, I coiled it and clipped it down with a duckbill clip when I was done with a section. I don’t know if I over did it, but I ran out of oil after finishing half of my head, so make sure you have enough when you start this! Luckily, I had some Cantu Nourishing Body Oil left over. The container didn’t do so well in hot water. 😦

In the next picture, you’ll notice that half of my head is a bit more puffy than the other…The puffy side is the Cantu, the smaller side was the Queen Helene. I’m assuming my hair just shrunk a bit, or the clip placement was off or something like that. When I unclipped it, there was no discernible difference between the two halves, besides the Cantu side was a bit more oily (I had more oil, so I was a little more generous with it).

I wasn’t satisfied with the results of either oil, and I’m starting to question the value of doing hot oil treatments. Maybe I’m jsut not doing it right. To further condition my hair, I tried the imfamous, stinky, and very old 5-Minute Reconstructor, and I have to say that I’m finally sold.

Look at that! I could have let it dry like that and head out! (With normal conditioner, my hair is a bit more of a poof even before I dry it).So what’s the first thing I do with my cute curls?I straighten my hair.

Look at the damaged ends! Ugh!

Yeaaaaah. It was a waste of time because it came out horrible. I wasn’t very good at getting it straight when it was permed, and I’m not any better now that I’m natural!

Me, circa 2007

Final Verdict?: I don’t think I’m going to do a hot oil treatment again anytime soon. It didn’t seem to do very much, but…I do love this Reconstructor. I’m going to have to go back for more, and maybe find a replacement when I run out. And as for straightening my hair…I think I’ll pay for a Dominican Blow-out. Much better results! For now, I’m going to stick with heat-free styles as much as I can.

Is your hair dry and breaking off? Hot oil treatments don’t work for you? Ready to CUT IT ALL OFF? Well try SUPER-CONDITIONING!!!
(Please Note: I don’t know if this is a good idea, this is just what I do to myself occasionally)

You’ll need:

  • Conditioner
  • Conditioning Shower Cap (or a regular one)
  • Towel

It’s very easy! I recommend doing this at night. Start off with freshly washed or co-washed hair, still damp, and use your favorite conditioner of the moment (Still Suave Professionals for me) to saturate your hair. You can add a little oil if you want. It should look like this, but it can’t hurt to get even worse than that! Or it can. I don’t know. 🙂

Next, pop on the conditioning cap, making sure all your hair is under it (Duh.) I use this shiny silver one that holds heat, but I’m sure a regular shower cap will work just fine. To reduce slippage and attempt to reduce the crinkling noise the shower cap makes, I add a satin bonnet [not pictured, I know you have one].

If you do this at night, like I suggested, or even during the day if you have time to walk around with a crazy concoction on your head, wrap your head in a towel to keep it from dripping while you sleep, walk, do chores, etc. just leave it on for hours and hours. Oh and don’t go out of the house like this. I’ll make fun of you.

That’s all it takes! My hair always becomes softer and curlier, and it’s a low maintenance way to deep condition.

Warnings: The environment you’re creating in your hair is very ideal for bacteria, mold, etc. I wouldn’t leave it in for more than a good night’s sleep (8-10 hours), and it is very important to start with clean hair and clean it again with SHAMPOO (preferably a moisturizing one) when you wake up. My head is frequently itchy when I wake up from doing this, but my head is usually itchy, so I’m used to it and I don’t know if there’s a problem. Let me know how this works for you!

Also, please welcome Jasmine, our third author who put up her first post on Sunday! I’m sure her contribution will be invaluable.

 

Who would have known my next post would be about a hot oil treatment?! Haha.

Soo my hair and scalp are feeling pretty dry.  It’s time for a hot oil treatment!



This is before I started. I feel a bit yucky about my hair, I mean all the sweating I do at the gym. It’s  too soon to wash it, so I decided to co-wash with V05 -passion fruit smoothie. This stuff smells so yummy! :3

This is after rinsing out most of the V05. Not it’s time to heat the oil, and section my hair!

My hair is damp in the above picture and I sectioned it in quarters. I sprayed it with a bit more water to make it a bit damper.  This is the oil I used-Mega Care Olive oil. The bottle  is only a dollar and it was enough for one treatment. I really should stick with African’s best, because that cost a dollar or two and it’s good for eight treatments.  Anyway, I heated some water on the stove and after letting it cool some I put the bottle of oil in the water and let it heat up.  Afterwards I took it out, made the sections of my hair smaller and applied the warm oil to my hair and scalp. I massaged my hair and then!

Twisted my hair in Small/huge Bantu knots thingies. o.o My knots really suck, I’m not sure if they deserve to be called Bantu. XD  I put a plastic cap on my head and took a little walk to get my body temperature up a bit. I decided not to rinse or shampoo out the oil. I think before I went to bed I put a bit of  (Elasta QP – INTENSE fortifying hair conditioning treatment-Review coming soon! <3) on my hair.  In the morning my hair/scalp came out sooo soft and moisturized. It looked so fluffy, I wanted to jump in it. XD The Bantu knots had stretched out my hair a bit so I was also showing a bit more length. I had pictures… but yeah.. I don’t know what happened to them. >.<  I had even gotten a few compliments on my hair. ^.^

(If I find them, I’ll post them later.)

What is the purpose of a hot oil treatment ? – Basically, to condition the hair and scalp.  It brings more moisture to the hair, it gives shine and temporarily smooth split ends. As for the scalp it can help relieve dandruff and a itchy scalp.  Some people use hot as a pre-poo, it can make it easier to clean the hair/scalp and others say they put it in so their hair won’t be super dry when they are finish shampooing.  (I guess it would depend on what kind/ how much shampoo they are using. )

How-  The heat opens up the hair cuticle (Imagine skin, warm water opens the pores, it’s like that) and allows the oil to pass through the cuticle(outer layer) and enter the cortex(second layer).   I’ll try to explain the three layers of hair(quickly).  You have an outer protective later cuticle. Underneath that is the cortex, this gives your hair it’s color, strength and maybe moisture. Medulla is the center of the hair but it’s not present in everyone’s hair. The medulla is very soft but other than that nothing is really known about it. *TAKES DEEP BREATH* I felt like I was just talking fast right there. XD  Soo, the oil hydrates the hair and scalp.   I kinda forgot about the scalp. >_>I think it’s basically the same thing for the scalp. It conditions and moisturizes the scalp.

 



One of the reasons, I think this is a good treatment for naturals is that.. If I remember correctly this type of hair has problems with oils reaching all the way to the  end of the hair.This process will help the ends of your hair get the oils it needs.

What you will need:  Oil (I love olive oil for my hair!), cup or a application bottle, A plastic cap,comb

How it’s done -Heat up the oil, You can either place the oil in a microwave-safe cup or heat some water and then place the cup of oil in the heated water. (You can also heat the water up by the stove). Wet your hair(or keep it dry) and then apply the oil to your scalp(Check the temperature of the oil first, You do not want to burn your scalp!)and hair and then massage. 🙂 Now, put on your plastic cap and get under a hooded dryer, use a warm towel, jump in the shower or just let your own body heat do the work.  Leave it in for at least  30 minutes.( The longer the better.) You can leave the oil in your hair, rinse your hair, or do a light shampoo.

It’s pretty simple and easy and shouldn’t take more than 30 minutes to an hour.

So! Go and try it with your favorite hair oil!

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