Monday, June 29, 2009

Caramel Treatment - Not for Me


All right. Yesterday I did something on a whim. I sat and thought about doing that caramel treatment. The more I thought of it, the more I was ready to take my twists out and give it a try....so I did. I mixed everything and it was not creamy like the article said. I think I may have added too much water. Anywho....

I made the mix and saturated my hair with it. Man!!! It was so much of the mixture! It was seeping all out of the plastic cap I had on - dripping everywhere. I think I kept it on for like an hour before I decided to give up on the process. I rinsed the mix in the shower, and I hated the little black "beads" that were in my hair as I rinsed. The banana was also hard to rinse.

Ok, so I rinse all of the mix from my hair, and continue to co-wash. Imagine my surprise when I get out of the shower to find conditioner caked onto my scalp!!!! I'm sure that happened when the olive oil from the mix and the conditioner got together. Amazing. So then I have to shampoo my scalp to get the caked up conditioner off. Have mercy!


After I do, I just take it to the next level and go with the Kinky Curly Knot Today. I really do love that stuff. I didn't really notice a change in my hair. However, I can not blame it entirely on the process as I did not follow the directions completely. Maybe if I had, I would see a difference.


I think for me, I will just stick with the henna. Henna is my friend and I know just what to expect from it.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Time to Change it Up


I don't know what I am gonna do about my hair. It's not like it's hard to take care of or anything like that. It's thick and coily and I love it. However, I am noticing that it is taking longer to co-wash...and the detangling this morning was painful! I guess as my hair is getting longer and thicker I am going to have to change up my regimen. I love the Suave conditioners, but I think I am going to have to go with something a little thicker. I have a big bottle of HE Hello Hydration under my sink, and as soon as I am out of Suave I will switch over to that. I think at this point my hair requires some heavier products in order to keep from being all over the place.


I'm still going to stick with my Long Aid activator gel because it gives the curl definition I am looking for. However, if there was something a little heavier, I would use that instead. I guess I am going to have to start looking at more/different products.


I'm not trying to use that as a reason to get back into PJism. LOL It's the truth. I am going to have to test out some things. I swear, I want to go to Urbanbella so bad to get a consultation. But I know if I do, they will be recommending expensive products for me to use when I really don't want to spend that kind of money on hair products. I mean, the Curling Custard is already $26. I stretch that and make it last for about 6 months so that it's not so bad, but the way my hair is now, I don't think there's going to be any more stretching. I guess that's why I have been holding onto the Long Aid curl activator like I do.


I'm trying to do this on a realistic budget. I'm not some well paid diva who can spend hundreds of dollars a month on her hair. (although I would love to think that I am) LOL I am a mother of 5 who works for a non-profit. Get the picture? I have to do this as economical as possible.
Let me get to my co-washing and detangling session from this morning. It was pure hell!!! Well, maybe not pure hell, but it was a little rough. I had no idea how much my hair needed detangling. I knew it needed some assistance, but to this magnitude - NO! I have been slipping on the detangling because I have been trying to spend less time in the shower. Well, I gotta do what I gotta do, and what I gotta do is spend more time on my hair.
So I put some Suave on my hair and tried to work it through, but it was not enough. I had to saturate from root to tip with the stuff to even get the amount of slippage I needed. I mean my hair was plenty white. So I am finger combing and raking my hands through my hair and it was a tough time. I was hitting all kinds of tangles and snags. I had a decent little wad of shed hair too. I can't complain though. I usually only have a few hairs a day. Today I actually did a good detangle and still got only a small wad of hair. I'm not tripping on the shed hair - I mean, with all of the hair on my head, it's not like it will be missed. It would be different if it was a clump of hair that came out all in one area, but that's not the case.
So, as I continued to detangle my hair, I noticed it began to act as if it wanted to go into a more downward direction as opposed to it just being "out". *I'm thinking, "Finally. It only took you 10 months."* Even as I was putting the gel on my hair, it was still trying to hang down a little. Even now that my hair is about 95% dry, it has "attempted" to dry in a more downward direction than usual.
I'm not taking this as the new trend, because I know that my hair will do what it wants. The top of my hair usually flops anyway, but this rough front hairline, shoot, it sticks straight up! LOL ...and the very back of my head - where that little egg part is, well, parts of it grow down while most grows out. It's going to be funny to see what my hair looks like a year from now. I'll just pray it's not a hot mess. LOL

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Ammonia Poisoning?




My fridge had been wreaking for a few days. Even so much so that I didn't go to the grocery store because I didn't want to open it! (I secretly hoped my husband would clean it out, but no such luck.) Yesterday was the last straw. My husband and son went to church for choir practice and I had the house to myself. I decided tonight was the night that I would clean out the fridge.


When I got home from work I changed clothes, got my cleaning supplies together - complete with a few pair of latex gloves. I went old school on the cleaning method. I had Brillo pads, Clorox, and ammonia - along with some Dawn dish liquid. Yeah, this thing was gonna be clean and disinfected - maybe even sterilized!


I started taking all of the food (Mostly condiments. We don't keep much food in the fridge once the kids go away for the summer.) out of the fridge. After that I took all of the removable shelving and glass out. Anything that could be removed was and washed in the sink that had my cleaning mixture in it. I also had the same mixture in a bucket that I could use to clean out the fridge as well. So all of the shelves and bins went to the sink for a gold old scrubbing - Brillo style. I wasn't even going to wrestle with any stuck on mess - straight up scrubbing!


Those that had stick messes had to soak a while. All was good on that end. However, the trouble came when I went to clean out and wipe down the actual fridge. I got my bucket, Brillo, and cleaning towel and went to work. The top half of the fridge wasn't bad at all. It didn't require any scrubbing - just wiping down - cool. The bottom half, well, every time I looked at it I just shook my head. The further I got to the bottom, the worse the mess was.


Before I got half way down the fridge my eyes began to water. Then I started coughing and my nose started running. I was thinking, "man, what's up with this?" I kept scrubbing and things got worse. More coughing followed by gagging and eventually vomiting! Yeah, it was getting really bad. I ended up catching on that it was the mix in my bucket. But I couldn't stop cleaning the fridge. I moved the bucket away from me and just made trips back and forth.


By the time I finished cleaning out the fridge I was a mess. My eyes were constantly running water and I couldn't stop the coughing/choking/gagging and occasional vomiting. I even sucked on a few cough drops (and anyone who knows me knows I absolutely hate those things) and they did help a little bit. My fridge looked great, but I was a mess! I went upstairs to shower - hoping I would feel better. No haps! All of my symptoms continued on throughout the night. I ended up having to sleep with a face towel across my eyes because they continued to tear uncontrollably all through the night. Every time I would doze off, I began to cough again and that would keep me awake.

I woke up once during the night to use the bathroom and I decided to check the mirror because my eyes felt horrible. They looked even worse! They were swollen and bloodshot. I ran back to the bed before my husband could get up to see what I looked like. I still had time to get few hours of sleep and I was going to try. My efforts were futile as the coughing and watering eyes continued until morning. I must have fallen asleep in the wee hours because when my husband told me it was after 6:00am I could have died. I had just fallen asleep. Damn! I went into the bathroom and turned on the shower - no lights. Have mercy...when my husband turned those lights on, I screamed! He quickly shut them off and used the light from the adjoining toilet room to light up the bathroom. I was in bad shape and wanted to stay home from work, but I didn't.

When I got out of the shower and took a looking the mirror, I realized that my eyes were still swollen. I felt like I had been ran over by a truck - then drug for about 12 blocks. So more than 12 hours have passed since cleaning out the fridge at this point and I am still suffering from it.


I'm thinking all this time that maybe I was allergic to the cleaning mixture or something that had been left behind in the fridge...until I talk to one of my co-workers. I told him about me cleaning out the fridge and he says, "oh that sounds like ammonia poisoning." The look on my face is like huh? So I'm like, "What?" "Yeah, ammonia poisoning. If you breathe in too much of those fumes you can get poisoned." I immediately went to Google "ammonia poisoning" to see what I could find.


There were plenty of results that explained it and told of the symptoms. Here is one of the articles I found through Google. Guess what the symptoms are listed as:

Symptoms:


Lungs and chest
Cough
Chest pain (severe)
Tight chest
Wheezing
Eyes, ears, nose, mouth, and throat
Tearing and burning of eyes
Temporary blindness
Throat pain (severe)
Mouth pain
Lip swelling
Gastrointestinal
Severe stomach pain
Vomiting



The symptoms in blue are/were the ones I have been experiencing. OMG!!! This is crazy. Now I just have to wait for this stuff to wear off. Chemicals are no joke. Needless to say, I will NEVER use ammonia to clean anything else again - ever!




*My fridge really is super clean though :o) *


Monday, June 22, 2009

Tybee Island and the Wonder of GOD


Yes, I went to the beach on Saturday. More specifically, I went back to Tybee Island. It's a 3 hour drive and well worth it. It's not Miami Beach or Venice where you go and see all kinds of vendors and people. It's where you go to just relax and enjoy the beach for what it is.

So, I get there and at first I am so consumed with just getting in the sun, that I can hardly think of anything else. I wanted to get a super great tan and nothing else. LOL So, when I get there, I pick a great place on the beach to settle in. I spread out my blanket and sat for a minute - just watching the water, and everyone else that was there. I like to observe people. I walk down to the shore just to get my toes wet and to see how warm the water is. Well, the water was great - so warm. I walk back to my blanket and sit down. I was so happy and so thankful to be there. I was just going to relax and try to let the ocean wash away all of the stress that was built up.

So, I chill on the blanket for a while before getting into the water. I never get in too deep. If I can't see my feet through the water, I get closer to the shore. However, this time, I was a little more adventurous. I went out into the water, and I couldn't see my feet. But I wasn't too afraid. Even the little fish that were jumping up out of the water just a mere few inches in front of me didn't bother me. The water was calming - even as the small waves began to come in. I enjoyed the way the waves beat me up and pushed me towards the sand. The water was so warm and comforting. It almost felt as if GOD was wrapping his wings around me to let me know that things would be ok.

After walking in the water for a while, I go back to my blanket just to sit and get some sun. I lay down and just clear my head. I can hear the sound of the waves and water hitting the sand. I love that sound. It's so soothing. I could stay here forever. I can here children laughing and people talking - not their exact conversations, but just voices. Everyone looks and sounds so happy. I can even here my own children laughing and playing in the water every once in a while. I love this sound. It's like the beach is a magical place. I sat up to take a look around - just to observe...I saw smiling faces everywhere. I didn't see one person who didn't look like they were enjoying themselves. Everyone was either tanning, sleeping, resting, jogging, or playing - from age 2 - 90 - everyone was having a great time. I saw older people, couples, children, surfer types, all kinds of people, chilling - doing the same thing - enjoying the beach. No one was arguing, or fighting. There was no tension at all. I saw white people and black people kicking it together - strangers - having a good time together.

The most amazing thing to me was to see GOD's work. I mean to see the beach and think about how GOD made it is awesome in itself. I mean think about it. Think about how he created each and every grain of sand, every seashell. Even more so, look at GOD's greatest creation - man. Look at us all on the beach enjoying what god has given us. Look at how we are all interacting together - coexisting. One of the most exciting and most amazing things for me was to see the dolphins. YES! Real dolphins!!! They were in the water and we could see them. They were not as close to the shore as we were, but they were close enough for us to see them swimming out in the water.

When I saw them I was so excited. I had butterflies in my stomach like a small child at Christmas. I was pointing and laughing and giggling. When they were first spotted, people were yelling and pointing - someone even mentioned that they were sharks, but that was because of the fin on the dolphin's back. There were so many of them - swimming up the coast. I couldn't wait to get up off of my blanket and run into the water to get a closer look. I really could not believe what I was seeing. Sure, you see dolphins at the aquarium, or Sea World or something like, that, but when you see them in the ocean like GOD intended them to be, it's so amazing.

As the sun started going down, I headed back for my blanket so I could just sit and enjoy the rest of my time on the beach. As I layed there watching the water, my attention turned more towards my immediate surroundings. I just looked and studied my blanket, my sunglasses, and then the seaweed that had washed ashore, and the sand. I kept thinking to my self and remembering Pastor saying that GOD knows every grain of sand. Then I began to look up and down the beach and back down at the sand that was immediately surrounding me. Then I thought about something else that Pastor said, "He knows every thing on this earth." ...and I am thinking, "every grain of sand?" I mean, to know every grain of sand just on the beach where I am or even the sand that is just immediately surrounding me is unfathomable! But to imagine every grain of sand on every beach in the world, every person in the world, every animal, etc...well it's just too much to even imagine.

Just as I was surveying the sand around me, I noticed the different seashells that were mixed in with the sand and remnants of seaweed. There were all kinds of shells. But what was most amazing to me were these tiny little sea shells that I found in the sand. When I say tiny, I mean super tiny. When I saw them all I could think about was the tiny little clam that would have been inside this shell. It was hard to believe that there could have been something so small. What was even more amazing was once again, the work of GOD. I looked at how small the shell was, and then I studied the shell. I took into account the color of the shell. The detailing of the lines and shape of the shell. Then I was just in awe of GOD all over again.

How could he take so much time and patience to create something so small? Because he is a GOD that loves. He loves everything that he creates and creates everything because he loves. Then I began to apply this thinking towards people. To GOD we are just as small as the shell I had laying on my fingertip. He took time and patience to create each and every one of us. Just like the tiny seashell, he thought about our color, our hair, the color of our eyes, the shape of our arms, legs, and hands. He even gave us distinct shapes and lines like the shells. Think about our fingerprints - they are unique to us - no one has the same finger print as I do. Think about every person in the world, and not one is a duplicate.



Then I went right back to looking at the beach and all of the people there. I was glad to have this day. I was fully able to appreciate GOD and just a small portion of what he is capable of doing. I realized how fortunate I was. Not only because I was at the beach having a good time, but because GOD took so much time to make sure that I was a special one-of-a-kind. There is no one else like me, and I love GOD and thank him for creating me.



Friday, June 19, 2009

Rant


Why do folks have to keep commenting on my hair?

What’s up with the hair?” *What do you mean what's up with it? Nothing, it's mine, it's growing, and this is the style for the day. If you don't like it, then don't look at me.*

Oh, I don’t like it like that.” *Who asked you?? I know I don't remember asking if you like it or not. I didn't know I needed to run my daily styles by you to make sure you "liked it". *

Are you going to pull your hair up?” *WTF???? What kind of question is that and WTF does it matter if I pull my hair up or not? Are you suggesting that I need to "pull my hair up"?*

I love your hair like that."Thanks" *So are they thinking if they compliment this style that I'll keep wearing it like this and not wear the other styles that they don't like or feel comfortable with me wearing?*

I really like your hair like that."Thanks" *Ok, so does that mean that you really hated my hair in all of the other 1billion styles I have worn?*

"Is that a wig?" *Is this a compliment or is somebody really tripping?*

Do you really think I give a rat’s azz what you (people in the world) think about my hair or how I should wear it? I mean really?

...and then there are the folks that think I should report all of my “hair activities” to them. Why is it that folks think they have a say-so on your hair once you cut the perm off? If I don’t ask for your suggestion, don’t offer them, ok?

Am I now incapable of styling my hair now that it's natural? Give me a break already. How about you get yourself some business and stay out of mine...and my hair.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Henna #3 & Noticeable Hair Changes


I mixed my henna Friday night so that as soon as I woke up on Saturday I could do it. I woke up about 4:45 am and went ahead and applied the henna. I was so out of it that I forgot to shampoo my hair first! I didn't even think about it until I was sitting with my deep conditioner on. Oh well, I still got the effects of the henna. I was scared tho. LOL

This timed I used 2 boxes of MDH Henna powder. I sure do love that stuff. It rinses soooo easy. No twigs or grit like the Mumtaz Al-Aroosa Henna. And the vibrant red that I got from the MDH henna is totally present. My hair doesn’t seem super dark like the Mumtaz Al-Aroosa Henna made it look. MDH Henna is my top pick and there is no need to go messing it up by using something different.

So yeah, I used 2 boxes. I had to for maximum coverage. My hair isn’t very long. The very back is only CBL, but my hair is just so thick. As straight as I used to wear my hair when I was relaxing it, you would never believe that it would be this thick without chemicals. Now after reading that henna can help your hair to become thicker, I am afraid of what it may look like. Part of me is afraid that I will fail and go running back to relaxing – but I can’t see that happening. Especially after I cut off all of my hair only a year ago.

I have noticed that my hair is flopping a little on the top side. I have even noticed a small patch in the upper right that has nearly stretched all the way out. It’s just like a wavy patch and the very bottom coils. I have noticed that my hair responds a lot better to “product” now than the pre-henna days. I look forward to getting up in the morning just to see what my hair will do or look like.

I must say, the more I henna, the more I like using curl activator for my hair. I really don’t know if I will ever buy Kinky Curly Curling Custard again. Yes, I love the stuff, but with henna and curl activator in my life, who needs to pay $25 for KCCC? I'm just sayin'. Lately, I can’t stay out of the mirror! I keep a little one on my desk at work just so I can see my coils. It’s insane.

Oh, did I mention flopping hair and curl elongation? Yeah, I’m getting that too. I’m only really noticing it in the very top of my head where the coil pattern is a little looser than the rest. It seems like the roughest area is right around my front hairline – STILL! Now giving it credit, the henna has definitely softened it tremendously and it seems like this last henna did a super great job with it. Seriously, so I will note additional changes after next month’s henna. I am anxious to see what new changes my hair will make.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Living the Lye








I used to be so happy when “hair” day would come around. This would be the day that the “men folk” would go away from the house and leave us to the task of relaxing our hair. Oh yeah, and it had to be done. My mom was a teacher and she had to keep up her appearance, and well, I was he daughter, I couldn’t be going out embarrassing her. My mom and I would gather our “supplies” and head off for the kitchen to take turns relaxing each other’s hair. It was important that we kept our hair looking good, I mean, that’s what ladies did, right?





Well, my mom got that thinking from her mother. My grandmother, my mother’s mother, used to be a beautician back in the day. From what I hear, she was all that. She still had trophies in her house when I would come to visit her as a child. Sometimes, when we went to Baltimore to visit her, she would treat me to a wash, press, and curl. I used to love for my grandmother to do my hair. I would be in her kitchen for hours while she took her time and was careful not to give me the burns my mother was famous for. You know the ones I’m talking about – the ears and kitchen burns…..yeah those. (I know you flinched at the thought of them. You know what I’m talking about.) I never remember ever having a burn when my grandmother did my hair.


Oh, but the best part was the curling. She was using the beveled curling irons back in the mid 1980’s. She would do these crowkinaw (not sure of the spelling on this one) curls – which were my favorite. These curls were so versatile. I could wear my hair curled under, or flipped up. If I wanted I could coil them around my finger for Shirley Temple curls. My grandmother could work those curling irons like nobody’s business. I still haven’t seen anybody work it like her. All I remember is the clinking of the metal tapping as it hypnotized my hair into a curly submission.




Once done, my hair was shiny and curly and it would last for at least a month or so. I mean even the Alabama humidity was no match for my grandmother’s skills. She laid down a hard press and my hair had to obey. I remember visiting her when I was in the 8th grade during the Christmas break. She did my hair for me. I couldn’t wait to get back to school and show off my new ‘do. It rained a lot and my curls held up through all of it. Imagine my excitement when I could stay outside under the carport and not have to worry about the humidity from the rain destroying my hairstyles. While other girls were running into the school, I was able to stand outside under the metal covering near my homeroom and chat it up.





When hair day came my mom would do my hair and then I would do her hair. Yeah I was a teen-ager relaxing my mom’s hair. I was good at it too. I would be getting it bone str8! She loved it and I loved doing it. Until…I was in the 12th grade and my mom switched relaxers. I still remember, she changed to TCB. I put the relaxer on like I usually did – started in the back. But when I went to rinse her hair, it was rinsing right down the drain!!! I couldn’t believe it. My other’s long beautiful hair was washing away! So many things ran through my mind: “What happened?” “She’s going to kill me!” “I didn’t do anything different this time. Did I?” “How can I tell her that her hair is gone?” Oh my gosh! My mom’s APL hair is gone in the back! I remember her rubbing the back of her head feeling no hair. I had to leave for Army boot camp shortly afterwards and while I was gone, she ended up cutting her hair off – but we were both still going to use relaxers. (To even type this seems insane.)











Even when I went off to college, I tried to cover my napps w/ grease and water. I remember slicking my hair back in the bathroom of my dorm so that no one would know I needed a perm. I remember the little waves I saw and how I almost gave up relaxing then. I wasn’t ready. It was 1990 and the pressure of being new in college and trying to fit a certain stereotype was important to me. I mean, I was able to pull it off for a long time, so why stop relaxing now?

When I was relaxing, I hated to see those nappy edges growing in. Why? Because that was like the curse of all things - to let someone - anyone see "them nappy edges" as my mother would so bluntly put it. In my household, that was the equivalent of your dress flying up only to realize you had on no underwear - you would be exposed! People would know that my hair wasn't that "good hair" or naturally straight. Well, who the heck thought it was "good hair" or naturally straight anyway? I never told anyone that it was. (No, I just pretended that straight flowing hair grew naturally from my scalp.)

It was considered to be embarrassing if your new growth was showing. That was something that had to be “fixed”. My mother had conditioned me to think that my natural hair was something that should not be seen by anyone out of our household. She often reminded me that my hair was “as nappy as a sheep’s ass”, and if you have ever seen a sheep’s ass, that’s not something that you want to walk around looking like – not even as an adult.







So fast forward about 18 years. LOL Imagine my mom’s face when I come to my aunt’s funeral sporting a TWA! Yeah, I was nervous to go home and face everyone after BCing. After all, I was always the one with all of the long hair. Hey, but I am a grown woman, right? Yep. Well, when am I nervous as hell? Because I was still worried about what other folks would say about me. All this time, I’m thinking, “Girl, suck it up and put these folks in their place about your hair!” And you know what? That’s exactly what I did. It was tough, but I did it, and that was the beginning of the confidence.

Hair Growth

Well, I henna'd my hair on Saturday. I had to use 2 boxes of henna this time in order to fully cover my hair. Not only is my hair super thick, but it has grown a little. How about I stretched out a coil from the back of my head and it is already CBL (collar bone length). You would never know it with the 99% shrinkage I have. LOL *well, not quite 99%, but you get the idea* It's another 4 inches for the very back to get to APL (arm pit length). So, I am thinking that worst case scenario it will take me 8 months, or until February 2010, to reach this goal. Maybe I should invest in some biotin and see exactly what that will do for my hair - if anything.

The very front of my hair reaches right to the bottom of my nose. I'm ready for this part of my hair to be chin length. Unstretched the very front doesn't even reach my eyebrow. (add side-eye smiley here) Althought I know my hair is growing, that is no sense of comfort for me right now. Summer is haere and I am wanting a fierce ponytail instead of my super fly puff. Yeah, I know - they typical "woman is never satisfied".

On an up note, my hair onthe sides is hanging half the length of my ears already - unstretched. Yes, I am quite happy about that little tidbit, but not surprised. Right on my hairline around my ears has a less amount of shrinkage than the rest of my hair. My son's hair is the same way, exept his curls are much more loose than mine. I used to wonder when I was braiding his hair why those two braids on each side of his head would always hang longer than the rest. i had no idea about shrinkage back then. It was only after I got on Nappturality and started reading and researching that I found out how shrinkage and out hair worked. Then I wondered if my hair would act the same as my son's and it does.

So, as I keep track of my hair growth from day to day, month to month, etc, what am I really expecting to see? I guess in the beginning I really thought I would see some overnight growth. LOL It sounds stupid, but I really did think I was going to see something miraculous. I went and visited Fotkis of people I knew whose hair was nothing like mine. Why? Because I was looking for just one person who has that "overnight" growth so that I could have the hope of mine growing that quick. I spent countless hours on Fotki looking, hoping, and wishjing, that I could have the "supernatural" (pun totally not intended) hair growth I was searching for.

My hair seemed to have grown fast when I was relaxing my hair - especially seeing as how I was doing a "touch-up" once a month. If I ever made it to six weeks, that was pushing it. Why was my hair growing so slow all of a sudden now that I have decided to stop using a relaxer? Where my hair was concerned, it seemed as if time stood still.



It's been 10 months (on June 22nd it will be 10) since my BC (big chop) and I'm still looking for something out of the ordinary to happen. Foolish - yes - but understandable. Every now and then I would get a little pick-me-up because my twists were longer or fuller or I would notice neding more product for my co-wash. Sometimes I would even be able to achieve a new style because of the added length I now had - wearing a puff...huh....huh?


Ok, so yeah, I shouldn't be complaining. Moreso tripping. I been able to wear a real certified puff since April - what's that, like 6 months post BC that I could wear a legitimate puff? Enough said.

NAPPY HAIR EPIPHANY




I went to the beach Friday.

It rained.

I didn't run.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Did I finally stumble onto something?

Ok, so I have been trying to find a way to keep my hair moist and get a little curl definition in the process. It seemed like things would work half way - either give me dry definition, or moist frizz. LOL I could never get anything to do both.



Well, just from pure experimentation, I think I have found something! I occasionally leave Suave conditioner in my hair and on yesterday I did that again, but I topped it off with some Long Aid Activator Gel. Yep, so I added both to my damp hair. Shook my hair a little and went on my way. Yesterday's results were fantastic and at the risk of it being a fluke, I did it again today with even better results!

My coils have so much definition. My hair is soft and moisturized - not sticky, tacky or flaky. Frizz has truly been limited and cut down to nearly being gone. It's amazing. Each little coil is sitting up doing it's own thing. I finally got the hair I wanted just by going and trying something new with the products I already have. And just think......the gel costs $6 for a huge tub, and Suave is $1 a bottle. So I got my miracle for less than $10.


Here are pics of my hair from today:





Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Caramel Treatment?

Ok, while surfing the net I ran across this article: The Caramel Treatment - a Natural Hair Softener


Well it sounds pretty good. However, it says something about loosening the curl pattern, specifically: "Many report 'loosening' of hair texture as well as less shrinkage after the treatment but this is likely due to the added weight of the product as well as the increased moisture levels in the hair. For this reason, the caramel treatment is excellent for helping to straightening the natural hair as it takes less heat to get smoother results as well as better moisture retention." I am not looking to loosen my natural curl pattern, but I am all for an all natural hair softener and less shrinkage.

(On this website you can find a small paragraph about the Caramel Treatment as well as a link to the article I mentioned above. Just go into the "101 beginners guide" section for tips and info.)

I have some of the things for the recipe at home! The rest I can buy later. Here is the recipe as posted in the article mentioned above.

Here outlined is a simple recipe.....:

Honey - 6 tablespoons
Olive Oil - 6 tablespoons
Bananas - 2-3 overripe and very soft
Molasses (Treacle) - 3 tablespoons
Water - 4-6 tablespoons
Apple Cider Vinegar - 1 tablespoon

I am loving this simplified version of the recipe. The original "product" also has wheat germ oil and cornstarch. I am going to henna this weekend, so in about 2 weeks I think I will try this and see how it goes. I am intrigued. LOL I think it will be fun to put this in the blender and have a go at it.

Ok, so after a little more reading, I see that (to me) it looks like this is more of a protein treatment. I don't want my hair getting too much protein, so I think I may just do this once a month (as suggested) instead of every other week. I have heard/read things about the protein overloads that some ladies have gotten and my hair has been fine without me doing "specific" protein treatments. I say specific because I don't knowingly put products in my hair that contain protein. If one of my products happens to have protein, then great, if not, then that is fine too. I just go with what products work best with my hair.

Once I do the Caramel Treatment I will be sure to post an update along with pics.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

What was I thinking?

Ok, so this morning I got up and co-washed my hair. Not just any co-wash, but a really good one - detangling and everything. Ok, I hadn't done this type of co-wash in weeks because I just hadn't had the time in the mornings to do it.

Well, this morning I was able to peel myself away from the bed before 6:00am so that I could get in the shower and take care of my hair. This co-wash was much needed, let me tell you. My hair has grown a lot over the past few months. I can tell just by the co-washing. My entire experiences with my hair in the shower has gone from less than 5 minutes to more than 10. That's a lot of time when you have kids that need help getting dressed in the morning and a husband that needs that shower that I am hogging!

Any who.....I get in the shower to co-wash and start rinsing my hair. My hair wasn't as soft as it had been for lack of co-washing. I mean I'm sure that's what it is/was. My hair was loving the Suave. I'm sure it is still thanking me. LOL The detangling wasn't bad, it was just that I had one tangle where as I have NEVER had a tangle before, so to me, the detangling session during the co-wash was a bit rough - so what....I'm spoiled. LOL

I did notice a lot of shed hair this time, but that was to be expected since I had not co-washed in a week or more. Still, I didn't like seeing it all. It was a lot of hair (but not really). I think my hair is still thanking me for the co-wash this morning. I'll need to do it every day now, or at least until I henna this weekend.

Lesson learned. I can not afford to get lazy with my hair. I must co-wash a minimum of 4 times per week. Yeah, that's right, 4 times per week. My hair needs it, and since I raised my new naps on co-washing w/ Suave, I have to stick to it. Why mess up a good thing. I'll just have to be quicker in the shower because my husband and water bill are suffering behind my leisurely showers/co-wash sessions.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Just Checking In

Sorry it's been so long! A whole week without a new post. I have so much going on. I stopped "Tweeting" because I couldn't hang. I finally got the hang of FaceBook, Nappturality is where I spend the majority of my FIT (free Internet time), and between all of that, work, and looking for a fiyah gold or bronze pair of shoes, I'm just swamped! LOL I promise I will do better......really, I mean it.



Ok, so right now I am just in chill mode with my hair. I did notice some new growth since my last henna on May 18th, so it's looking like I will have to mix some up for next weekend. I'll make sure to get my supplies together and spend my Saturday morning treating my hair to a wonderful spa day. LOL So.....I guess I will mix my henna around 7:00pm so that by the time I get up Saturday morning, I can get started. Yeah, that will be good. I need to run by Wal-Mart and pick up some more rubber gloves and HE Hydralicious. Well, maybe if i take the time to locate my rubber gloves I wouldn't have to pend $1.27 on a new package! LOL



I did some 2-strand twists last weekend and let me just say, they were nice! They were so thick. Before, I would make my twists and they wouldn't be nearly this thick and on Saturday when i did them, I was amazed at how nice and juicy they were. It didn't take long to do them either. I might start twisting my hair at night for a few days to see how it goes. (that's probably a lie seeing as how I love the ease of just putting on my satin bonnet and going to bed) I wouldn't do as many twists as are in the picture for overnight, but a few just to keep my hair stretched. Not sure though. I know it will be a commitment and plenty of nights I am guilty of watching TV until I fall asleep. I'll try it tonight and see how it goes - just some big ol' sleeping twists. LOL



Now what I have noticed is that my hair is starting to hang/flop a little more. I keep wondering is it because of the henna, the length/growth, or both. I'm really excited to see how my hair will look in about another year or so. I have been visiting different Fotki albums to see hair that looks like mine and I really haven't found anyone who has hair that looks like mine. I have fine little coils all over my head that range from coffee stirrer size, to small marker sized coils. Most are in between the two. I have seen one person with hair similar - she has a (slightly) looser coil but my hair is somewhat thicker. I guess nothing but time will show me the results.