Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Apologies and Hairstyles

First off, I must apologize for my lack of consistent posting. I have been uber busy around here. Let me give you the deets. I am a crocheter and a knitter. So, every year around this time I find myself procastinating on projects until about the end of November. By this time, its crunch time. So, I find myself knitting and crocheting whenever I have any free time. And I haven't been having much free time. You know how it goes in December. Christmas parties, Christmas activities, Christmas programs, etcetera, etcetera. Therefore, I haven't been doing much to my hair...

I wore the previous cornrow style for about 1 1/2 weeks. Then, I started hating how old and dirty it was getting. So, I made plans to take down my hair and do it on Saturday. Needless, to say Saturday was busy also! Shopping, Dinner outing, shopping. So, when I got home it was about time for me to hit the sack. But, I took the time out to take down my style, finger detangle, and put in some chunky braids. The next day I wore my hair in a high bun with a swoop. Again, I made plans to wash my hair but, that night was busy, and so was the next, and so was the next...

Because I hated wearing my hair out for those 3 days--especially in that style because it was tangle city--I decided to do a quick protective style until I actually had time to dedicate a full day to my hair.

Below are the pics of my high bun style (inspired by the oh-so-lovely MeechyMonroe) and my cornrow/twist protective styles:

The High Bun
Cornrow/Twist Style

Friday, December 2, 2011

Hair Inspiration: Rhonda Ross Kendrick

I first remember seeing Rhonda Ross on Another World when I was a child. Back then, she was rocking her gorgeous locs. Now, she is wearing her natural hair out and it is just as beautiful.

Of course, most people know Rhonda's sister (Tracie Ellis Ross) and mother (Diana Ross). And even though, Tracie has a gorgeous head of hair, I didn't want to overlook the gorgeous mane her sister has also.

Hair Today: Side Swept Cornrows

I haven't been doing anything major to my hair. I've been keeping up with the protective hairstyles. I put this style in after washing my hair with Shea Moisture (review coming), co-washing, oil rinsing, and deep conditioning. I like this style and I have had it for about a week now.

Note: I did re-do the front braids after about 4 days.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Hair Shots: From this Past Weekend

This past weekend while in Florida, I rocked a braid-out done on dry hair. I simply took down my cornrows, finger detangled, and re-braided using Jamaican Mango Lime. I didn't keep my hair out for long and re-braided it on Sunday night.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Oh protective style, how I love thee...

Life has been going on. Forgive me for my lack of consistent posting. I'm trying to get better.

However, nothing much has been going on with my hair. I have been sticking to my Fall/Winter hair regimen to a tee. And I've gotten so spoiled by protective styling.

See, this past weekend we went to Destin, Florida (Absolutely gorgeous place BTW!!!). I wanted to wear my hair out. Now that I think about it, I don't think that was the best style for the being next to the water. So, I took down my cornrows from the style in the previous post, finger detangled, and re-braided using Jamaican Mango Lime, Water, and EVOO. The braid out came out pretty cute. My hair has grown so, I wasn't used to it being that big...or maybe I just wasn't used to seeing my hair out. I wore the hair out for 2 days and couldn't take it anymore. I braided it right back up.

You all know how my hair does. Once its out, I have tangles galore!

I must admit that I was so happy to go back to my protective style. Once you put the style in--especially braids--all you have to do is moisturize, oil, and go. I just love the ease of protective styling :-)

OAN: I will post pics of my "out" hair from this past weekend. And I will post pics of the cornrow style I have been rocking this week later on. I haven't been having my camera with me :-/

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Hair Today: Cornrows with Center Part

So, I have been wanting to try this style for awhile but, I was a bit hesitant. Usually, center parts don't compliment my face. However, I really like how this style came out. I feel the parts could've been straighter but, it is what it is.

Here's what I did:
1. Co-washed my hair with V05 Moisturizing Milk in Peach
2. Oil rinsed using 50:50 mixture of EVOO and EVCO
3. Deep conditioned for 30 minutes with V05 Moisturizing Milk conditioner
4. Rinsed out and began to style
5. I applied Suave Naturals in Coconut as my leave-in
6. I then created a center part in the middle of my comb using the rat tail end of a comb
7. I put 5 cornrows on each side of my hair.
8. Once finished, I spritzed my hair with EVOO/water mixture, applied EVOO, and covered my hair for the night
9. The next morning I two-strand flat twisted the hanging pieces and led them to the back of my hair. I then bobby-pinned it in place.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Hair Inspiration: Skai Jackson

There's this new show on Disney Channel called "Jessie". I love it! All of the children on the show are too adorable and funny. But, I have to admit that I am partial to the character Zuri played by Skai Jackson. The character has this festiness mixed with adorable that just works. I love whenever she has a scene.

Now you know I just love her hair, right? They put the most adorable styles in her hair. So, I knew I had to feature her as a hair inspiration.

Hair Today: High Bun

Yesterday, taking down my twists and finger detangling took entirely too much time! So, I simply put my hair in 6 jumbo braids, covered my hair, and went to bed. This morning I had no idea what to do to my hair. I did know I wasn't going to wear my hair out and I wanted to protect the ends of my hair. I was playing with the idea of doing a headband pin-up. But, just the thought of a headband on my hair the entire day annoyed me. So, I decided to try a easy high bun since it worked so well with the twists in my hair.

It worked like a charm! This style was soooo quick and easy.

Here's what I did:
1. I took down the braids---my hair was somewhat stretched.
2. Using my fingers and hands only I pulled the hair up into a high ponytail.
3. Using an ouchless band, I wrapped it around the hair twice. (Yall know I can't stand tight ponytails)
4. Using bobby pins, I pinned the hair under to create a bun.

No products, brushes, or combs were used.

Tonight, I will be washing and re-braiding my hair...

Dividing Up My Hair Tasks

Photo Source HERE

As you all know, I have set a length goal to have my hair graze my shoulders unstretched. When setting length goals, its easy to look at the finished product and not think about the work that goes into natural hair that length.

My hair has not reached the goal I've set for myself yet. But, I'm already finding myself spending more and more time on my hair. It takes about 8 hours to put in average size twists now. It takes about the same amount of time to take them down while finger detangling them.

Therefore, I have found myself dividing up my hair tasks. In the past, I would take the hair down, then detangle, then wash, oil rinse, deep condition, and style. Things have changed. For instance, last night I took down my two-strand twists, detangled, and then braided it in jumbo braids to keep in detangled. I did not wash my hair or style it because it was about 11:00 pm. So I went to bed. This morning I just pulled the hair up. The next task I will tackle will be washing, oil rinsing, deep conditioning, and styling tonight.

I have accepted that I can't do all that I used to in one session unless I plan on doing my hair the whole day and not going anywhere. Not gonna happen.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Wish List: Shea Moisture

There are a new few products that are on my radar. I will probably be purchasing these products as a Christmas gift to myself. I have listed my top picks below:

1. Shea Moisture Raw Shea Butter Moisture Retention Shampoo - As mentioned previously, I will be switching my shampoos. I plan on leaving the Giovanni alone and picking up the shea moisture.

2. Shea Moisture Black Soap Deep Cleansing Shampoo - I also want to add this shampoo into my regimen. I feel it would be good for the times that I need a good clarifying.

3. Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie - This may work good for dry twist-outs--and maybe wet ones also. And I must admit that I am swayed by what is claims to do: restore moisture, reduce breakage, strenghthen hair, etc.

These are simply my top three Shea Moisture products to add to my arsenal. However, I do want to try some of their other products but, this is good for now.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Hair Today: Two-Strand Twists

Yesterday, I took down my cornrows and two-strand twisted my hair. Even though the twists aren't that small it took me about 8 hours to put them in. I used Fantasia IC Olive Gel to put the twists in. After the twists were in, I oiled my scalp with EVOO, I oiled my hair with EVCO, and I sealed my ends with a shea butter/EVCO mixture.

I plan on keeping the twists for 2 weeks. I will then take them down, wash, and cornrow my hair.

Great Linkage: All About Shampoos

My sister, Auset, did a great two-part post about shampoos. I like to think of her as the shampoo queen because she has tried quite a few of the popular brands we naturals love. I took her suggestion when looking for a new shampoo because I no longer like my old brand :-(

Anywho. She covers so much informative information in the posts such as the following: (1) mini reviews on the various shampoos she has tried (2) her thoughts on shampoo bars (3) if moisturizing shampoo is a myth (4)the no poo method (5) the low poo method. And so much more!!

The posts can be found {HERE} and {HERE}.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Hair Today: Cornrows

As you know from my Fall/Winter Regimen I plan on keeping it simple this year and alternating between two-strand twists and cornrows. This is the week for cornrows. So, I plan on keeping this style in for 1 week. I will then take it out and two-strand twist it.

Yesterday I did the following:
1. Finger detangled
2. Individually braided hair in big sections (about 8) to wash
3. Shampooed hair with Giovanni Direct Moisture shampoo (I used their new Eco Chic line and I don't like it.)
4. Followed up with an oil rinse of 50:50 Extra Virgin Coconut Oil and Extra Virgin Olive Oil.
5. Co-washed with a Dollar General cheapie conditioner. I deep conditioned with the same conditioner for 30 mintues.
6. Took braids down, applied Suave Naturals in Coconut as a leave-in, and cornrowed.

This morning I:
1. Took off my satin scarf/bonnet
2. Pinned the ends under

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Great Linkage: A Brief History of Our Hair

I read this article and I thought it was great. It really gives a brief in-depth look on our hair, hair growth, our ancestors hair practices, and so much more.

If you have time click the link {HERE} and check it out. You won't regret it :-)

Friday, September 30, 2011

Hair Plans for the Weekend

Hey, ladies. This weekend I'm taking it easy and will keep the twists in for another week. I will continue to moisturize and oil my hair each day but, other than that nothing major planned.

That is the beauty of twists. Once you have them in you don't have to think up a new style or re-style for a while. It's like a mini break.

Well, that's it.

Have a great, safe, and blessed weekend. I love you all!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Natural Blast from the Past: Bob Marley

I think we all pretty much know Bob Marley. He was a great musician, singer, and songwriter. My favorite songs by him are "No Woman, No Cry" and "I Shot the Sheriff". I mainly like his greatest hits but, I'm not a gun ho fan that know all his songs. But, I can appreciate great reggae music.

His locs are the bizness. Thick, long, lucious. They perfectly complimented that gorgeous chiseled face with those hypnotic sunken cheekbones.

Being Natural Doesn't Have to be Complex or Hard

Photo source is {HERE}

I was just sitting here thinking and I started thinking about the vast amount of hair regimens out there. They are wide and varied. I constantly stay on the natural hair blogs and I love to read other ladies hair regimens. And even though I like to read them, I don't pick up everything everybody does. I found what works for me and I'm sticking to it. (Yes, I may test or try out different things but, its gotta pass the test to be put in my regimen. LOL)

So, I said all that to say this. Being natural does not have to be hard or complex. I've heard it before and I am sure you have too, "I would go natural but, its too much work" or "I don't have time for that". Etcetera, Etcetera.

But, I come here today to say it doesn't have to be hard. I feel like I have adopted a simple hair regimen and I don't spend all day everyday in my hair. I mainly like to wear protective styles (braids, twists, updos, etc.) and this means low manipulation of the hair. Once I put that style in at the beginning of the week its going to last me about 1-2 weeks. To maintain it I just have to spritz, oil, and seal. This take about 5-10 minutes--if that long. I wash my hair every 1-3 weeks and this works. I am not--nor have I ever been--a product junkie. I don't always need super defined hair. So, if I'm wearing "out" styles I don't re-twist or braid them. I let the hair do what it do. You can go to the page tab of "My Regimen" to see further details of my regimen. Simply put, I like to keep it simple.

Now, even though being natural definitely doesn't have to be hard or complex it doesn't mean that you don't do anything to your hair. I feel like any hairstyle you have requires maintenance and care. I don't care if it is relaxed or natural, bald or long, colored or uncolored. It's going to take work. But, work doesn't always have to be long or hard.

Find what works for you. Find out what you're willing to spend time on and what's not really necessary. Find out what products/treatments are best for your hair. Just do you. And I guarantee you your natural journey won't be so complex or hard.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Hair Today: Twisted High Bun

Yes. The title is correct.

I'm wearing my hair in a bun and I used an ouchless band to put it up. Shocking. Yall know I have a fear of pulling my hair back but, this band is putting no pressure whatsoever on my hair or edges. It's so light I can barely feel it. I plan on wearing this style on and off (not that often) because I don't want the hair to become weak or break wear the band is located. Tomorrow, will be an updo day...

[I may record a quick tutorial of this style tonight.] UPDATE: The video for this hairstyle can be viewed {HERE}

Fall/Winter Hair Regimen

It's that time of year again. This year, I'm keeping it oh-so-simple.

Below is my hair regimen plans for the Fall/Winter:
1. I will wear a full cornrow style for a week. This will help the hair stay detangled and give it a slight stretch.
2. I will take the cornrows down and then, put in two-strand twists.
3. I will wear the two-strand twists for about 2 weeks in various hairstyles (i.e. buns, updos, pin-ups, flat twisted)
4. I will take the twists down after the 2 weeks. I will then detangle, shampoo, oil rinse, co-wash, deep condition, and rinse.
5. I will then cornrow the hair back up and repeat the regimen.

**I will be spritzing my protective styles with my water-based mixture every day or every other day. I plan on applying EVOO, castor oil, or EVCO to my hair everyday. I plan on sealing my ends every other day with shea butter/EVOO mixture.

Simple huh? Well, that's it ;-)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Natural Skin Care: Dealing with Eczema

So, I have always struggled with eczema since I have been a child. Dry, itchy, tight, scaly, and irritated skin is just an example of what I have to deal with. The thing with eczema is there is no cure for it but, you can control it. Lately, I have been experiencing a severe outbreak that has effected my neck area, my chest area, my arms, the backs of my leg, my thigh, and my stomach. Almost all of my body.

My last severe outbreak was back in 2005, my junior year of college. I went to the dermatologist and I really liked his method of dealing with eczema. He did not put me on any type of medication but, he told me how to deal with it. Here's what he suggested:
1. Throw out any soap or lotion I was using because soap strips the skin of its natural oils and most lotions have water that dries the skin. He suggested I switch to a cream based body wash and moisturizing creams. He suggested brands such as Aveeno. He also suggested that I apply the cream while the skin is still damp to lock in the moisture.
2. He then suggested I take my baths at night while keeping a humidifier on. This would produce steam in the air and keep my skin moist throughout the night.

I must admit that this did wonders for my skin. It had never looked so wonderful and blemish free. So, what happened?

I became lazy and stopped doing everything he suggested. For example:
1. For some reason, I started using Ivory soap. Ivory and most bar soaps are too harsh for my skin.
2. I started switching up my lotions. Most lotions irritate the mess out of my skin.
3. I lost my humidifier so, there was no moist air.
4. I started back taking my showers in the morning and therefore, exposing it to the drying air. When I took them at night and immediately went to bed with the humidifier running my skin remained soft and supple.

So, my plans are to first make another appointment with the dermatologist. Following his suggestions, I hope to pick up my old skin regimen. Also, I plan on applying EVOO to my skin and then putting on my cream based moisturizer because it is a penetrating oil and stays on the skin longer. And since I have no idea where my mother packed my humidifier, I plan on purchasing another one.

The thing is I got comfortable and let go of my skin regimen and look what happened. But, you live and you learn.

Hair Today: Cornrows leading to low Bun

Yes. I pulled my hair back using an ouchless band. I put it on loosely so, there is no pressure on my head. Yesterday, I wore the hair pinned up but, I didn't feel like bobby pinning the hair today.

Moving on to the hairstyle...I washed my hair and then I put 5 large cornrows in my hair as you can see. Instead of braiding the hair to the end, I twisted it. Just another quick, easy, and simple protective style ;-)

Monday, September 19, 2011

Hair Today: Jumbo Twist Out (Day 2)

This past Saturday, I finger detangled my hair while watching Jumping the Broom. I then loosely braided each detangled section. After my entire head was detangled, I dry twisted my hair using Jamaican Mango and Lime locking gel (It's been awhile since I used that product but, I still have a love for it.) I did a jumbo twist out with about 13 twists in my entire head.

It turned out pretty nice. I didn't get any pictures of Day 1 but, this is Day 2. Even though I like the style I will definitely be washing tonight and then putting in another quick protective style. I don't feel like dealing with tangles so, this is definitely the last day of this style. I don't care if I have to stay up all night to style it.

And isn't that headband the cutest? Well, I took it off. It was squeezing the mess out my head behind the ear areas. I can't stand pressure on my head :-/

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Switching Shampoos

For awhile now I have been thinking of switching to a new shampoo. My main shampoo is currently Giovanni Deep Moisture and Giovanni Triple Tea Tree Therapy. However, lately I have been feeling as if those shampoos are too stripping. For this reason, I was only shampooing my hair once a month and I still thought that was too often.

At first I was considering Aubrey Organics--and I am still curious about their shampoo. But, I noticed that my sister Auset Abena and my fave YouTuber Ahsiek1118 were using Shea Moisture products. The sheen and moisture of their hair is out of this world. I was thinking, I want that for my hair.

So, recently my sister Auset Abena bought me two different types of Shea Moisture shampoo. How great is that!!!! So, I will be using the shampoo and letting you ladies know how I like it.

I also plan on trying out some of their other products...