Daily Archives: June 14, 2011

The Banana Clip: Who Knew?!

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So, I was reminded of the banana clip by Kim of Kimmaytube.  She used it to secure her twists.  I picked up a pack of three from Sally’s a few months ago to use with my twists.  That worked out fine.  Buuuuuut, liked it even more for these styles. My hair is stretched with a TnC (twist and curl) first.  In the first two pics, I left the front section of my hair out of the banana clip. The remainder of my hair was secured in the banana clip.  Then, I just pin-curled about inch wide sections with bobby pins. This lasted about three days, I guess.Then, on day four, I released all of the pin curls and released the banana clip.  I put the banana clip back in securing allof my hair in it this time.  I used a couple of bobby pins to keep the front hair directed to the middle and longer pieces secured along the banana clip to create the appearance of the “hawk.” I enjoyed this style.  Got called Rihanna (in a good way;) a few times at work and received several compliments=).

The banana clip is also great for creating a massive, messy bun as it creates a wide base/foundation around which to loosely wrap the hair.  For me, it’s great because I have fine hair, so it allows me to make my hair look thicker with a more voluminous bun.  Also, it doesn’t snag or pull any hair like a scrunchie (even satin) or hair elastic does.  I tend not to pull out any hair releasing the banana clip whereas a scrunchie always has a few shed strands wrapped around it when I take it out of my hair.

1 banana clip. 3 modern styles.  Who knew?!?!

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If you like this, you may also like:

Banana Clip Bun Video Tutorial

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Hi, My Name is Shelli and I Am A Product Junkie.

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Yes, I admit it.  I have a problem. I have accumulated a lot of products over the years, especially the last year since discovering CurlyNikki.com. This exercise in photo documenting and itemizing everything in my shower, under two sinks, on top of one sink, in the freezer, fridge and kitchen cabinets really brought that home.  But, I KNOW that I’m not the only one.  So, I’m thinking “What’s in Your Cabinets?” might become a regular feature where everyone can showcase their habit and give us the rundown of their acquisitions;-). What do you guys think? Look, I’ll even go first with …

Part I of Shelli’s PJ Stash:

1.  HE Color Me Happy shampoo (this is old, like 2008 old). It’s what I used when I had a few tracks in the back of my hair for length (this was after cutting my hair from BSL+ to ear length and growing it back to about CBL). It was recommended for the human hair I purchased in NY.  There’s barely anything left in it.

2.  Neutrogena T-Gel shampoo. This is even older than the HE shampoo. Like, really, really old.  Haven’t used it in half a decade, at least. But still won’t throw it out.  Shoot, might use it as a clarifier.

3.  Curls Creamy Curl shampoo. This was about $8 (I think) at Harmon’s.  This is the version they sell in Target, not the salon version. I’m not a fan. It causes my hair to tangle and seems drying. Tried it again this past Saturday with the same results.

4.  Ion Curl Enhancing shampoo.  This was about $5 or $6 from Sally’s.  It contains SLS, so I dilute it with water in that bottle behind 8 when I want to remove excess oils/butters/styling products. Although this has SLS, it does not strip my hair.  It lathers IMMENSELY, but the lather is moisturizing somehow.  My hair does not tangle with this.

5.  DevaCurl No Poo shampoo.  I think this size bottle is $18. I prefer the DevaCareNo Poo (HG) for color-treated hair, but Ulta was out of it.  I’ve tried a lot of shampoos now and Deva is still my favorite and the best on my hair, so it’s one of my holy grail (HG) products.

6.  SheaMoisture Raw Shea Butter Moisture Retention shampoo. Got this at the Walgreen’s BOGO sale. Believe all SM products are around $9-$10. Haven’t tried this one yet.

7. Dr. Miracles Temple and Nape Balm. Think this was $7 or so. Got it at Sally’s, I think. Don’t really remember. Got it a few years ago (maybe 3). Can you tell? I’ve used it quite a bit in the last year.  Don’t know that I’ve noticed any results with it. Got it for my fine-haired nape!

8.  Curls Dream Curls Clarifying shampoo. This is the salon version that I ordered from CurlMart using a GC I won from CN.com. It’s not cheap and the bottle was little. Again, not really impressed, especially given the cost.

9.  DevaCare One Conditioner (HG). Been using this for at least 6-7 years. It’s slippery and moisturizing and I’ve used it as a daily, deep and leave-in conditioner. It hydrates my hair and makes detangling easy for me. This is, like, the 32 oz. bottle. I think it’s about $28. However, I always buy Deva at Ulta when I have either a 20% off or $3.50 off coupon.

10. Herbal Essences Hello Hydration conditioner (staple). This is the big bottle. Think it’s about $5-$6 at Walmart/Harmon’s/Target (anywhere;). I use this to co-wash sometimes and it is a necessity for my henna rinsing. Time to restock as this is my last bottle and the plan is to henna this weekend while the SO is away.

11.  Herbal Essences Long Term Relationship conditioner. This size is about $3. This is a more recent acquisition and I’ve yet to try it. Little concerned about the dimethicone, but not overly.

12.  Aussie Moist conditioner. Again, about $3-$4. I mix this with distilled water to do a conditioning rinse over my DC before rinsing all of the conditioner out of my hair (this is a Ouidad technique I picked up from my sister and think it really makes a difference in the feel of my hair. For me, the key was the Ouidad conditioning technique, not the product – see 14).

13.  Herbal Essences Hydralicious conditioner. I picked this up last year after Nikki was raving about it as a leave-in for her TnC. That’s when I was in my full on JUNKIE mode, picking up something (or sometwo, somethree) every week!! I used it once, I think. Decided to leave it alone because of the cones.

14. Ouidad Deep Treatment. This joker normally costs $50, but I got 20% or 25% off on a sale a couple of years ago. Yup, spent about $40 on a DC.  I was NOT impressed with it in the slightest. Definitely overpriced as it relates to my hair. I’ll use it eventually by adding honey and oils to it. Carol’s Daughter Tui Hair Smoothie is less than half the price and worked far, FAR better for me. Again though, the instructions on how to use the treatment have become my standard DC technique.  Definitely noticed a difference in my DC results when I started following the “15 minute cool down and applying a conditioning rinse before rinsing DC” steps with CD Tui Hair Smoothie.

15. My essential oil mix (staple) (rosemary, cedarwood, thyme and lavendar EO in jojoba and grapeseed oil) in a repurposed eye dropper bottle=). Can’t give you a price for this because I don’t remember the price of each item in the mixture. The carrier oils aren’t that much, but the EOs can get pricey and hard to find. I ordered a couple online and found the thyme at a natural food store in my area.

16. Oyin Honey Hemp conditioner. I think this was about $16, but don’t remember. Oyin’s creator/owner is my SOs cousin!!  Both Jamyla and her husband PIerre are Black nerds too!!  It’s awesome. Oh yeah, the conditioner. It was decent.  A lot of people LOVE it. But, again, it was just okay on my hair and did not replace my DevaCare One. One reason for that is because Deva is easily accessible to me via a brick and mortar store.

17. Darcy’s Botanicals Pumpkin Seed Curl Moisturizing Conditioner. This is $12 for 8 oz.  I have two. This smells AMAZING (and I don’t consider myself a fan of pumpkin/pumpkin pie). It’s also very thick and moisturizing. I only use it as a DC as I find it economical for that.  It works very well for me, with no additions or heating. I’ve read reviews complaining about the pump, but it doesn’t present a problem for me.  Maybe that is because I’m not trying to use it to co-wash.

18. Tigi Bed Head Moisture Maniac conditioner. Picked this up at Target on sale after reading a lot of rave reviews about it on CN.com. This is the big 32 oz. (or so) size bottle and, I think, it was about $16 on sale. It was okay. Again, didn’t knock DevaCare One out of it’s HG status/position.

19. JessiCurl Weekly Deep Treatment x2 (now x3). This used to be $12, but went up to $16.95 last fall!!! Let’s just say that I was not pleased. I started getting this instead of CD’s Tui Hair Smoothie as it was significantly cheaper (CD’s THS is $20 for 8 oz.). I really love using this as a DC with a little added honey, JBCO and olive oil and coconut oil slightly heated. I had that CurlMart GC, so I bought a couple, even though the price had increased. Then I got a freebie in the GOC giveaway=). So, I’m stocked up on DCs for a while (especially given that there is a MyHoneyChild Olive You DC in my other cabinet, which I haven’t revealed to ya’ll as of yet;).

20. Carol’s Daughter Kizzi “Stay Put” Hair Pomade for $9.50. Picked this up from Sephora last year based on a friend’s recommendation. It did not make my hair/edges “stay put.” But, it’s good for sheen and sealing, I think.

21. Shea Moisture Shea Butter Deep Treatment Masque. Got this in the Walgreens BOGO sale too. It’s $9.99 regularly. I was pleasantly surprised by this DC, as I mentioned in a prior post. I didn’t expect it to work well for my hair as my hair doesn’t seem to be a fan of Shea Butter. However, I used it alone (no added oils or honey) and it appears to really moisturize my hair. It doesn’t go on smoothly like some of my other DCs. It has a thicker/coarser consistency. But, once rinsed, my hair is shiny and moisturized. 6/1 UPDATE: Used this as my DC after henna this past weekend. This is NOT good for a post-henna DC as it does not provide any slip and hair needs lots of slip to help with detangling after a henna tx.

22. Wonder Curl Get Slick Hair Smoothie tester. Price: Free;)!!! Well, the tester was free; the smoothie is $7 for 4 oz. on WonderCurl.com. Used this as a leave-in before using WonderCurl’s Butter Than Love. I was testing the product for her but had been using DevaCare One or the Kimmaytube recipe as my leave-ins. Wonder wanted me to try her BTL with her leave-in. It worked well. Got a good set out of it, which I’m pretty sure I posted on this blog somewhere in the past.

23. Vatika oil x3. I think this is about $3.99 (too lazy to go look at the bottle). As you see, I must like this as I have 3 bottles of it! I actually haven’t used it recently as I’ve been using my JBCO to seal and item 34 for pre-poos as of late.

24. Kinky Curly Knot Today Leave-In conditioner (staple). $12 for 12 oz. I use this for the Kimmaytube leave-in and it works great. I tried DevaCare One in the recipe a couple of times, but the KCKT worked better.

25. Giovanni Direct Leave-In conditioner. Think this was $8-$9 at Ulta. Read rave reviews about using this in the Kimmaytube recipe instead of KCKT. Cheaper option. I’ve only used it in the recipe once so far, but found it comparable to KCKT. So, it’s definitely an option.

26. Giovanni Leave-In Hair Treatment spray. This was an impulse buy at Ulta when I was getting the GD Leave-In conditioner. I think it was around the same price ($8-$9). I’ve used this a couple of times to “refresh” hair. Not enough to really judge, but didn’t see that it did anything more than Infusium 23 or the Sally’s GVP equivalent for Infusium. So, don’t see myself purchasing this one again.

27. Oyin Burnt Sugar Pomade. I think this was $12, but don’t remember. You can find the price on CurlMart. This smells delicious. But, it has a grainy texture that I worry might shred my fine hairs when I apply it. I don’t use it that often, but it smells wonderful (note, I love sweet smells=)! It has castor oil, which my hair loves. But, I just use Jamaican black castor oil (JBCO) straight out of the bottle for sealing.

28. Carol’s Daughter Healthy Hair Butter (HG). I think this is $18. This is one of my HG products. I haven’t been using it a lot lately because I’ve been experimenting with all these other products! But, it’s a product to which I always return and I attribute a portion of my hair growth and retention to the use of this product, mixed with gel, for WnGs. It’s moisturizing without being greasy or heavy.

29. Shea Moisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl Enhancing Smoothie. Again, purchased during the Walgreens BOGO sale and it’s about $10. This product didn’t work well for me solo. However, mixed with something that provides hold (#32 or #36), it works well. It’ll work in a pinch, but will not be replacing my CD’s HHB.

30. Shea Moisture Hold and Shine Moisture Mist, $10. I’ve been using this a lot. It’s moisturizing, but think it’s a little too oily for my hair to use regularly. It’s good when my hair starts looking/feeling dry and needs a refresh. However, that doesn’t seem to occur too often anymore as I only go a week between wash, DC, moisturize and seal sessions. So again, not likely to be a repurchase.

31. 100% Raw African Shea Butter. Actually, I just picked this up from a Harlem street vendor and I use it for my face!!  So, this doesn’t count as a hair product as I don’t like shea butter on my hair. It just sits there and, I think, it even makes my hair look “ashy!” *lol* Again, use JBCO to seal.

32. Eco Styler Olive Oil gel (staple). Ladies, I got this massive tub on sale for, like, $3 at Sally’s! At the time, I was like, “What am I going to do with all of this gel?!?!” But, gotta tell you, I really like this stuff. It works great for mixing with moisturizing products to provide hold on sets or my edges. Because it’s heavy and not wet, it doesn’t make my edges revert as long as I tie them down with a satin scarf while it dries. Eco is definitely a repurchase when it runs out in another year or two;-).

33. DevaCare Set It Free at approx. $17. I think I got this half-price on a buy one get one 50% off sale at Ulta. I remember balking at the full price and think I waited to try it until the sale. This was another Curly Nikki inspired purchase. She uses it on her ends before rolling for TnCs. It has a thick, milky consistency, but is thin enough to spray. I really like this as it is very moisturizing. I’ll definitely repurchase, but with a coupon or when on sale!!

34. Dabur Vatika Hair Fall Control Styling Cream x2, $5.99. See my review in prior posts. Long story short, me likey. That’s why I have 2=).

35. Oyin Shine & Define, $11 for 4 oz. This is another product that I mix with something moisturizing or apply after something moisturizing. Again, it provides a light, flexible hold. I find that #36 provides more shine. However, this is natural whereas 36 is not. I hadn’t used this in a while, but broke it out for a set a few weeks back.

36. Murray’s Loc-Lock gel, approx. $3.99. I use this for two strand twists when I plan to wear them for several days/weeks. It is not thick or waxy and does not get hard or flake. It provides a light, flexible hold. Stores that sell it are not easily accessible to me, so I won’t go out of my way to repurchase. However, if I see it or happen to be where I can purchase it, I probably will once this one runs out. It’s not an item I would “back stock” though.

37. Wonder Curl Get Set Jelly sampler/tester. I’ve only used a little of this once on the WnG I posted a couple of weeks ago. Don’t think I can review it yet as haven’t used it enough.

38. Wonder Curl Butter Than Love tester, Free;)! $12 for 4 oz/$20 for 8 oz. Okay ladies, this stuff has given me BEAUTIFUL and consistent TnCs. I use Kimmaytube leave-in, then apply this, twist, roll, dry and then release with a little JBCO.  LOVE the consistent results I’ve gotten with this product. Pretty much I’ve used it on almost every wash day since the beginning of this challenge.  So, almost all of my hair pics on this blog are styled using BTL.

If you read all of this, I am über impressed!!  Hope something in it was useful!!

Later this week, PJ Stash, Part Deux (Yes, there’s more.  STOP JUDGING ME!!!)!!!

My Current Regimen

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February 19, 2011

At the beginning of the challenge, I established a hair growth/health goal to go from BSL to WL by December.  However, I also committed to reclaiming my healthy eating and exercise habits, which I’d lost sight of over the prior year and a half.  The following is my current hair, body and health regimen.

WEEKLY:

1. Pre-poo and finger detangle dry hair with Vatika oil or Dabur Vatika Hair Fall Control Styling Cream (30 min to whatever – I’ve left the oil in for two days and rocked buns!  LOL!).  Finger detangle during or after pre-poo.

2. Shampoo (usually with DevaCare Low or No Poo).

3. Condition and finger detangle further (usually with Herbal Essences Hello Hydration).

4. Deep condition with heat (bonnet or winter hat) for minimum of 1 hour up to overnight (JessiCurl Weekly DC, Darcy’s Botanical Pumpkin Seed Moisturizing Condition or Shea Moisture Raw Shea Deep Treatment Masque).

5.  Allow hair to cool 15 minutes, then apply diluted daily conditioner (Aussie Moist or whatever I have) directly over DC, then rinse with cool/cold water.

6. Apply leave-in (kimmaytube recipe or DevaCare One).

7.  TnC to stretch hair (Wonder Curl Butter Than Love).

8. Allow hair to dry for however long it takes (sometimes under bonnet dryer for an hour to speed air drying time)

8.  Wear twist out for 1-2 days, then go into protective/low manipulation style for 5-6 days out of week.

MONTHLY or BI-MONTHLY (as time permits):

2 Step Henna/Indigo Treatment


DAILY SUPPLEMENTS/NUTRITION:

1 Multi-Vitamin (Nature’s Way Alive Energizer for Women)

1 Biotin – 1000 mg (Nature’s Bounty)

1 MSM – 1000 mg (Vitamin Shoppe)

60 oz or more of water (three 20 oz bottles in a metal thermos)

Breakfast (btwn 7-8 am):     1/2 Oatmeal or 1/2 cup cooked Grapenuts with 1/2 cup blueberries (Dole frozen/thawed); cup of instant coffee w/2 packs of Truvia, 1 tsp brown sugar, a little powdered skim milk

Snack (approx. 10 am):        Fage yogurt (fruit variety/2% or 0% fat)

Lunch (approx 12:30-1):      Lean Cuisine (chicken turkey or fish with rice or potatoes) w/added vegetables (spinach, broccoli or sugar snap snow peas) and a piece of fruit

Snack (approx. 5 pm):          Fruit or, DON’T JUDGE ME,  organic baby food =)

Dinner (approx 8 pm):         Lean Cuisine (chicken turkey or fish w/rice, potatoes, whole wheat or orzo pasta) w/added vegetables (spinach, broccoli or sugar snap snow peas); fruit (apple, navel orange, cherries, banana) on occasion.

Post work-out:                            Whey Protein Shake (Nectar Strawberry Mousse currently); w/banana if after hot yoga

[This is my basic diet during the work week.  But, I deviate at times and believe that moderation is key to maintaining weight loss.  So, I’ll have a piece of cake … I am a buttercream fiend … onion rings, popcorn, Weight Watchers 2 point Chocolate/Raspberry Ice Cream Bar, etc. depending on what is going on in my life=).  I started this personal challenge at the beginning of January weighing 145 pounds.  I currently weigh 122 pounds (23 pounds lost) and want to lose 2 more by the end of the GOC (July 31st).]

April 23, 2011

EXERCISE (5-6 days a week):

Hot Yoga (Vinyasa Flow; 1 hr 15 minutes, generally 2 days a week)

Kettlebell DVD (1-2 days a week; 50 or 30 minutes)

Treadmill C25K training (2-3 days a week; 30-40 minutes)

Brazil Butt Lift DVDs (0-2 days a week after treadmill work out; 30 minutes)

Abs of Steel DVD (3-6 days a week in the a.m./10 minute)

July 29, 2011