Posts Categorized: Hair Updates

January 24, 2011

Hair Update | Have A Game Plan

hairplan

:here’s mine:

I began implementing the ultimate hair game plan in light of my newfound quest for healthier hair, with length retention. A few weeks ago I took pen to paper & began to slowly outline my approach, which would include minor alterations to my current routine. Nothing major, yet practicing and improving on a few techniques and committing to an even better deep conditioning practice is a top priority.

What I’ll focus on: Deep Conditioning

Once a week I’m committed to applying a DC to my hair for a minimum of 1hr.

  • 1 Henna Gloss
  • 1 Bentonite Clay/(mixed with varied essential oils, ACV etc.)
  • 1 Rhassoul Clay Treatment (still deciding on the Anita Grant block or purchasing the clay from another retailer)
  • 1 Freebie pass at a nourishing deep conditioner from either past favorites (Curl Rehab, Dacry’s Deep Conditioning Mask, etc.) or new ones that’ve been on the ‘get’list for a while
  • **possible investment** Hair Steamer. The Huetiful Steamer has been on my radar for some time, & I’m strongly considering investing

Cleansing: More focus on Scalp with a Hot Oil Pre-Poo

A while ago, I began applying a Hot Oil Pre-Poo to the scalp using Coconut Oil/Vatica Oil/Lavender Essential Oil – and this has worked great! Worked in using the pads of my fingers & left in for 15minutes under a conditioning cap, and my scalp has experienced less dryness/tightness and hardly any flakes.

Been using the Denman Be-Bop Shampoo Brush to help with detangling while in the shower, and hair has been reacting VERY well. So, to keep with consistency It’s going into the weekly routine. I’ve also upgraded to a bigger, widder tooth comb after the last one broke.

*If you’ve noticed a bit more resistance with detangling as your hair gets longer, try switching to a different, better more durable detangling comb that is seamless with a good handle. I’ve had easier detangling sessions after switching…BUT, a woman is still curious about this dang Tangle Teezer!? Reviews across the board have been favorable, even from a few women with coarse/thick/curly hair…so. (it’s an option:)

Since focusing more on deep conditioning/detangling – the use of a few styling products will have less of a focus. Meaning, more consistency & not switching from a butter moisturizer—>pudding—->styling cream—->gel—->etc. This is mostly to keep myself sane & more focused on the goal.

Stylers:

  • Leave-In Conditioner (KBB Hair Nectar/Sweet Ambrosia  ) +
  • Conditioner (EO’s Moisture Rich/EO’s Everyday Leave-In Weightless Moisture)

Giving myself a bit of leeway as far as products used to seal in moisture and help maintain a 7-day hair for the nightly routine. Leaning more towards products that are light in consistency (KBB’s Hair Cream) so as not to accumulate too much buildup on the scalp. Recently tried Anita Grant’s Whipped Butter & hair very much approves! A small amount emulsified into your hands imparts crazy shine & seals in moisture…#win!

Will I be undergoing protective styling? Still playing this by ear. Hair has been in twists for the past 3 weeks due to colder temps and really no other reason. With colder air, and windier conditions I tend to experience far more tangles and dryness. SO…I’m thinking 3-4 days in twists, followed by 5-7 days of a fab twistout (might also get up the nerve to try a rollerset).

And that.is.all! I’m certain to stumble upon a few minor tweaks down the line, but for now…focusing more on deep conditioning/taking care of the scalp/practicing better detangling/more consistency = healthier hair (?) ( it better!)

December 29, 2010

What are the First Steps to Retaining Length?

I’ve been mulling this over for the past few weeks and I keep coming back to a different question alltogether. Why? Why decide to progressively grow hair to any particular length in the first place? I really do want to make sure my intentions are correct going into this, mostly because of the extra TLC I’d have to dish out to my hair each week. I’ve said here before that I was never one to really explore the issues of growing out natural hair, and it’s mostly because the main focus was always on figuring out how to care for it, what products worked best and how to ultimately feel comfortable as the girl with Fro-ish hair. But there is a lot to consider once you do make the decision to care for your hair in differing ways.

Will I have to do more protective styling? More deep conditioning? Practice better detangling methods? Should I re-vamp my entire hair regime?

My current hair regime is pretty solid, something I’m fairly proud of. It’s taken one hair fiasco after another to ultimately stop the crazy, and finally get serious about caring for my mop. Each week I map out my strategy and try to incorporate methods and products that will nurture my hair for the long run. Since my last hair cut earlier this year, the growth I’ve seen is normal. For me. Over the years I’ve grown used to my hair growth pattern, how often it grows…which seasons it grows fastest etc.

So…now. I’m not sure. I figure I’m bored with my hair? Nope…can’t be. Having too much fun lately enjoying Big Hair Don’t Care status for that even to be a concern. Yet I think what’s drawing me to this challenge is the fact that I’ve never committed to it before. I’ve always wanted healthy hair…craved the knowledge to rightfully care for it and subsequently enjoy the fruits of my labor.

Now, I hope is the fun part. Hope being the operative word. There’s a great Healthy Hair Challenge commencing over at The MopTop Maven & it really couldn’t have come at a better time. The purpose of the challenge is not only to help all in retaining length…but primarily focuses on hair health practices. Its never enough to want long hair….you have to instill the methods, time and commitment involved in achieving it. And of course…don’t give up. It is a challenge after all…

I’m up for the challenge. There will certainly be those who do not understand the crux of why women want longer natural hair, but in the end it’s not about others. My brother, god bless his unknowing soul was over the other day, and after peeking into my shower and pointing out my bottle of shampoo, began ranting and actually laughing in disbelief over my hair shenanigans. Apparently the name of the branded shampoo (Carol’s Daughter Curl Perfecting Shampoo) is code for crazy curly girl is obsessed with her hair…and yet he’s also a person who has his own personal drive to be good & better at his health. He takes amazing care of his body, works out regularly and stays away from sugary drinks.

Healthy hair for woman I’m noticing sets a strong example for how we choose to live our lives. Goal oriented (hopefully), always striving for something greater. At the very least…this is me know. I’m all for setting new goals in 2011 and retaining length during this healthy hair challenge run should be fun, I hope to learn a great deal…and in the end I sure do hope to succeed!

I’ll be tweaking my hair agenda in the coming days, mostly to include better conditioning practices and the use of several herbs I’ve had lying about. If anything, it should all be very interesting! If you’re also up for the challenge, chime in at The MopTop Maven’s site. Tons of advice, tips and Q&A’s to last until your personal goal is reached!

December 27, 2010

Henna Gloss: Take One

If you’d be so kind as to ignore the glum hither look in these pics, I’d love to dish about my first ever venture into the world of Henna! This past holiday week really has been nothing but a blur, considering I neglected to take pictures after the henna application. Everything leading up to the decision to do the treatment was last minute and full of *kanye shrugs* for emphasis. I was 100% committed to my monthly Bentonite treatment, then noticed a box of Jamila Henna sitting lonely by in my PJ junk drawer. It’d been a long time since I first purchased & for some one reason or another jumped on the chance…mostly out of utter curiosity.

First place I turned to was Twitter to ask for Henna recipe suggestions, then hightailed it to the informant on all things Henna…CurlyNikki. Her site has great tutorials on application, benefits of Henna & answers many of the questions you might have before embarking on this often messy journey. I choose to proceed with baby steps by first trying a Henna Gloss as opposed to a full Henna application. Differences between the two aren’t significant. The gloss offers you more conditioning with the benefits of a subtle color change, while a full on Henna application requires more time, but with greater long-term benefits such as stronger, smoother & shinier hair. Click here to read more.

I did deviate slightly from the her recipe, instead used herbs and conditioners that I had on hand:

Henna Gloss Ingredients:

  • 1 box Jamila Henna (this varies for each curly, but for the thickness of my hair 1 box was just enough)
  • 1 cup of Horsetail steeped in close to boiling water
  • 1 tblsp Raw Honey
  • 1/2 cup of Conditioner ( I used Yes to Cucumbers because of it’s natural thickness)

I mixed everything together to form a thick paste, not too runny but a consistency that would make application fairly easy. Before applying the mix, hair was properly detangled & washed in sections using La Coupe De Frizz Shampoo. It’s a sulfate free shampoo that’s been working great on my hair since running out of the Curl Perfecting Hair Milk Shampoo.

With hair still in sections after washing, I applied the Henna Gloss and left in for 15-20 minutes. There was a bit of mess while applying, but if using a pair of latex gloves and laying the bathroom down with brown paper bags…cleanup was easy. Rinsing the gloss out with the help of the Yes to Cucumbers Conditioner took all of 3 rinse repeats. Henna was easy to rinse clean away, & I followed up with a deep conditioner for added measure. I recently restocked on Shea Moistures African Black Soap Balancing Conditioner & left this in for close to 2hours before rinsing & styling with EO’s Moisture Rich Conditioner + Karen’s Body Beautiful Hair Nectar

I did notice a slight color change, more like a reddish tint that is definitely more visible in direct light. But aside from appearances, hair felt the softest I’ve really ever felt my hair! Like BUTTAH! I had Hand In Fro even before styling which was fun for a bit.

This past weekend did not leave me with much time to take the after twist-out pics, but I did take some this afternoon while in the midst of a NYC #snowpocalypse . Again, forgive the…face. Eating crackers, rice cakes and chicken soup for the past day or so can leave someone…less than enthused.

The air in my apartment has been a dry nuisance, but it’s a small price to pay for round the clock heat, thanks landlord! But Fro has reached the dry depths of heck, so re-moisturizing nightly has been a must. I plan to keep re-twisting nightly until the end of this week, so hopefully the style will last until Sunday’s wash.

Would I do another Henna Gloss in the future? Absolutely! I think any natural head craves the ultimate softness experienced from a a great deep conditioning treatment, and this was certainly it!  Henna for me has always been a bit of an ambiguous step because of the the mal-effects I’ve heard from other curlies. But venturing slowly by trying a Henna Gloss has softened my apprehensions, and maybe….just maybe I’ll give it the 100% go ahead for a full Henna treatment sometime in 2011.

*Have you guys dabbled in Henna? Would love to hear stories, recipes!

July 19, 2010

Hair Wits

Can we all modestly agree that maybe….just maybe, the hella heat of Summer 2010 has won this week’s battle of hair wits? Hmmm….?

I should have long dunked my head of hair in a bucket of ice COLD water yesterday…but for all intents and purposes, deemed it unsafe and ill advised to move various parts of my body in order to wash/style my hair this week. I.Just.Could.Not.

What I do have to show is how beautifully kind my twists have been over this past week. Sunday would have made it 1 week with them in, and considering my ‘scalp situation,’ this is yet another milestone. Warmer temperatures are better suited for my scalp that is naturally prone to dryness, so humid temperatures are halfway welcome.

the smile that you sorta see in the pic is me attempting to bear with a trickling breeze that tried to make it’s way through my windows. I waited in vain & you can very faintly see the sweat beads christening my upper lip…but err…, yes.

This above pic was taken Friday afternoon, and to be quite honest…I can’t remember much else during this past weekend. The below pic…taken either Saturday or Sunday, shows my attempt to clip the twists up, up and AWAY, before heading out to buy my bro his birthday present.

He got a cute B-day card, sans the Hallmark Greeting and other fun toys, while I finally ducked into an air conditioned movie theatre to finally watch Toy Story 3! Yes, this was my weekend – and while it was HAWT, it was continually joyous, sunny and mixed with good conversations with people I’m blessed to have in my life.

The twists have fared pretty well, despite the Sun beaming down on my hair, trying it’s best to suck out the moisture. While the air is saturated with humidity, my hair comes home after a long day in the sun, dry and in need of more moisture. At night I’ve been regularly applying Fleurtzy’s Curls Nurture Cream (*as needed) and just a dab in the morning after removing my satin bonnet.  Up-do’s will be in main effect for the rest of this blimey heat week…

*off to canoodle with my fan*
July 8, 2010

Bodacious Happenings…

Vacation sabbatical is officially over & it’s more than time to resume regularly scheduled hair shenanigans!  I fully intend to get myself together and answer e-mails, update posts and post pics from my time in New Orleans…all in do time (which means anywhere from tomorrow to this weekend:-).

I ‘m currently experiencing what some  might call ‘vacation withdrawal,’ or a constant state of denial – half believing the good times had at the Essence Festival are indeed over and refusing to accept the INSANE heat that has overtaken the East Coast while I was away.

Umm…it’s HOT y’all! And I’m not talking…’HEY, Summer is finally hear let me break out the daisy duke attire…type HOT’.  But there is a serious case of O.M.G weather happenin, and the pretty coif I sported while down south could would not hold up past mid-week.

But I digress to offer some great news upon my return! Back To Curly was nominated for an Afro Glitz Web Award!! Here’s where I dork it out…but I’m really honored to be in a group of ladies that I admire on the regular, and Miss Ghee who runs the amazing Afro Glitz site is simply one of the best in the Natural Hair-O-Sphere!

I’m always inspired each time I click on over to her site, and would be doubly honored for your vote!! Click on image above or badge on the right make it count;-)!

Also, please check out my Bodacious Blogger feature over at For Colored Gurls!! Jamie was kind enough to include me on her inspiring site, and would love to hear your thoughts!

June 21, 2010

Easy Does It

I’ve been enjoying these past few days away from the office, basking in the day’s sun & nightly breezes that only Southern weather could afford. I’ve been taking time off from e-mails & correspondences as well as from the sometimes tasking job of styling the hair. With the always creeping humidity here in Florida each mid-morning, I kept the hair on a low maintenance agenda with only two styles.

I’ve been easily re-moisturzing my olden wash-n-go with water, and yesterday before heading out to celebrate Father’s day with the Pop, pulled the hair back in a few Goody Ouchless headbands picked up from Ulta last week. Really wish a few Ulta locations would spread the love somewhere in the New York tri-state area. I love Ricky’s here in NYC, but the variety that Ulta offers makes me SWOON each time I walk in!  Also, tried to track down the impossible to find Eco Styler gel in Olive Oil formula and failed yet again! Starting to believe the only way to acquire this thing is to order off of Amazon’s site. But even that won’t be too soon, as I instead picked up the larger size of the clear formula to hold a girl over:=).

Really love the functionality of the Goody Headbands! Perfect for the Summer, easy to use when pulling back the hair, and they stay put! I bought a pack of about 8 for less than 4 bucks, and looking to snag a few more before heading home. I abhor wearing wet or slick styles in the Winter because of the time it takes for my hair to fully dry, so I plan on taking advantage yet again this season, and easing on into a less time consuming hair regimen.

Anybody else choose to spend less time on their hair during the warmer months or is it just moi?

:http://backtocurly.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/01-01.-Michael-Jackson-Ill-Be-There-Remix-Prod.-By-Beatnick-K-Salaam.mp3|titles=01