Monthly Archives: October 2011

Threadmill Satin-Lined Hat Review

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Check out this awesome review by CurlyNuGrowth, our September giveaway winner!!

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Crochet Hat w/ Satin Lining by Threadmill

Yes, my Crocheted Hat with Satin Lining from Threadmill finally arrived, and in such pretty packaging!

As some of you may know, if you follow me on Twitter [CurlyNuGrowth], I won this hat in a giveaway from the Hairscapades blog a few weeks ago! I was really ecstatic about it, especially with the weather getting colder here in the DC area!

The hat is crocheted and is done so with pretty thick yarn which adds to the warmth of the hat in windy weather. And also, unlike most crocheted hats that have holes that allow the cold air to get to your curls, my hat has an added satin lining! The satin lining not only protects my hair from the yarn which could cause drying and/or lint balls in my Sisterlocks, but also from the wind and cold air from getting to my tresses, Win Win!

I absolutely LOVE the hat, and especially the satin lining! Its warm, colorful, and stylish and definitely a great addition to my Fall wardrobe!

I want thank Dottie at Threadmill for sponsoring the giveaway and Hairscapades for hosting the giveaway! I look forward to more great content at Hairscapades, as well as fabulous giveaways! If you’re interested in purchasing one of these great crocheted hats with an added satin lining, head over to the Threadmill Etsy shop and take your pick at their great selection!

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September Update: Tiffany

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Tiffany (GOC Second Wave) gets us up to speed with an update that covers her set-backs and progress during August, September and October!

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I know this is way past due and I’ve been swamped at work. In August, I called myself trying to be like Jack LaLanne and drink my food by doing a juice fast – Big Fail. Let’s just say that my body can’t handle cold turkey of not eating solids. Certain combinations looked and smelled good, but tasted horrible.

I just couldn’t bring myself to drink them. So, I just tried to eat healthy, organic, fresh foods (not processed) and box shelved foods.

September  was a real challenge for me. I felt tired, so busy at work I forget to eat, headaches that would come and go. I had digestion issues, so I would take laxatives to get rid of the excess bloating and the lack of “going” on a daily basis. Needless to say, I got through September without going to the gym at all. I lost a couple of pounds from the stress at work alone.

Then, I received a call from  my longtime friend and fellow natural, Dr. Shavon Jackson, N.D. out of West Orange, NJ (http://www.brooksidenaturopathic.com/). She’d been telling me about a Detox that she had been researching called Metagenics. It’s a detox to reprogram your system about the things that you eat. This process is not about a quick fix, it is about better vitality and health all around. Detox is important to overall well-being. So ultimately, its goal is to make you feel better and prevent you from getting overburdened by toxins, which can then make you sick. The detox itself is only 10 days, however the preparation prior to and slow introduction following makes it a complete 2 week detox program. I had a consultation with her and realized I wasn’t treating my body right on the inside, therefore I was feeling and looking a sight on the outside. I started the program the second week of October, when I knew I didn’t have anything major planned.  I sustained myself on fresh fruits and veggies for a 10 day period. My symptoms started to change. I was able to “go” on a daily basis and I didn’t feel so groggy and tired inside. I was also able to incorporate juicing into the detox. I went from 160 to 154 pounds.

Now, on to my hair. I experimented with a number of styles over the course of August through October. And I realized that a sew-in and micros are definitely not for me.

I did small 2 strand twist on my hair using the Twist and Lock gel and I guess I left them in too long and they tried to lock on me, the outcome cute nonetheless.

I tried to twist on a 2 week old TnC and I had stellar results, almost as good as your TnC.

However it lasted only a day, then back to the drawing board. Finally, this week, I did a henna treatment blow out since I hadn’t planned on going to the gym anytime soon. I realized my hair grew a lot since my cut in May and the start of the Grow Out Challenge. I think I’ll keep it straight for a while. I got some Miss Jessie’s and Taliah Waajid products from the Circle of Sisters back in the beginning of October that I have been meaning to try (reviews to come).


To sum it all up:

Weight – August: 160,  October: 154
Hair – May: Shoulder length, October: Mid back length
Products (new) – Twist and Lock gel (with the purple top) and a new brand of henna that kind of gave my hair an auburn tint.
Health– Detox to jump-start my body on the road to a healthy lifestyle. Regular visits to a Naturalpathic doctor. No drugs, all natural.

That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

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You look great Tiffany! You’re glowing in that last pic! Congrats on weight loss and growth!! And by growth, I don’t mean just hair, but your revelations about living a healthier lifestyle! I’m definitely going to check out your friend’s site! Maybe I can get her to write a guest post for us with a little more about the concepts behind the program and the benefits;)?

What a Week!!

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So, it’s about 6 pm on Sunday and I’m in the Barnes and Nobles trying to get a few posts together for Monday. You see, it’s been a heck of a week. As you know, I was under the weather last Sunday. I took the day off of work on Monday and was feeling well enough to return on Tuesday. Tuesday night, I decided to hit the treadmill and did mid-intensity intervals as I still wasn’t feeling 100% and noticed that my chest was tightening up. I should have taken that as a warning. On Wednesday, I started to lose my voice at work and by that evening was down to a raspy whisper. I’ve never lost my voice in my life! I talk ALL of the time! This was just inconceivable!!

I went to work on Thursday anyway, with even less of a voice, and then had to head down to far south Jersey for a big annual overnight dinner and Friday morning board meeting. Before heading down south on Thursday, I was rear-ended. Fortunately, it was a very minor fender bender, but it’s going to require a claim and be an inconvenience, nonetheless. I got the guys information, then hit the road, attended the dinner Thursday night and the meeting the following morning. Then, I hit the road for home around 12:30. I made it back around 4 pm and hit the sack, still trying to recover from the cold with laryngitis that I suspected had become either a sinus infection or bronchitis.

Saturday hit and the snow began … in October. Before Halloween. We’re not talking about a little flurry … a dusting … or even an inch of snow. No. We’re talking about a full on snow storm, 6-8 inches of accumulation, downed trees … county wide power outages … closed roadways. Yeah, the whole kit and kaboodle. I lost electricity at around 2 pm … just when I was about to finally catch up on all the 60 hours of shows I have DVR’d! Instead, I had to essentially spend the rest of the day sleeping (which was probably needed). On Sunday morning, awoke with the same nagging cold, cough and congestion. Took a sink bath (thank goodness for gas heat that can be used to heat water) and headed out for brunch. It took an hour to finally get to some place to eat and a 40 minute wait once we got there. You see, traffic lights up and down the major route through my county were down and almost every U-turn was barricaded by the cops. Every place we stopped was either closed or packed until we finally gave up and stopped at a packed diner. After waiting for parking and waiting to be seated, we were finally able to sit down, get some coffee and eat around 1:30. Then we hit the road again and now, we’re back at the beginning …

It’s about 6 pm on Sunday and I’m in a Barnes and Nobles trying to get a few posts together for Monday. My house is dark, cold and “disconnected.” I’m in a warm Barnes & Nobles sitting next to Wei and three other people (one of whom bought a power strip with him so that he could charge multiple devices from one wall outlet) typing away, hoping that one of the times that I call my internet supplied home phone number that it will ring repeatedly instead of picking up on the first ring, signaling that power has been restored. But, I know that hope is a shot in the dark … pun intended.

With that, I ask that you please bear with me if there aren’t as many posts as normal this week, if that review or hairstory you sent me isn’t posted or I don’t respond to comments. As you can see, I’m kind of going through something! LOL!! I have no hair updates as there was no wash day this weekend and my hair is a mess right now, hidden in a low bun under my Threadmill satin-lined beanie!! That being said, I was able to finish two other posts for today and I hope that you enjoy them.

HAPPY MONDAY!!

(And here’s hoping that this week will be better!!)

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I’m in need of some cheering up! So, please regale me with your story of fun or success from last week!! If you don’t have any of those, then commiserate with me in misery. But, I’m really hoping for more of the former than the latter!!

(p.s. Today is the last day to submit your entry for the October giveaway!! Three copies of Chicoro’s Grow It! are up for grabs! 3 winners will be selected at the end of the week and they’ll also receive a bottle of Vatika oil donated by moi as an added bonus! Click here for details on how to enter for your chance to win!

ApHogee 2 Minute Keratin Reconstructor

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As you know, I’ve been experiencing some breakage and decided to revisit protein treatments after an eternity of not doing them. You see, although I only learned of the theory of protein sensitivity last year, I knew something in certain types of conditioners targeted for relaxed, damaged, ethnic hair made my strands hard to the touch and rigid in movement. And, I didn’t like that. So, I’ve pretty much avoided them my entire life, even when I was relaxed.

Protein Sensitivity: A Misconception?

However, after Michelle of Radiant Brown Beauty did a couple of posts about protein treatments, describing their purpose, how they help her hair and how to properly use them, I realized that I might have given protein conditioners a bad rap. She did this post, The Shocking Truth About Protein, which was very informative and stressed something that I’ve never read before about protein treatments. They must be followed by a moisturizing conditioner! Well, why didn’t they say so?!?! Until reading this and the instructions on the 2 Step ApHogee treatment, I’d never seen a protein deep conditioner include directions that it should be followed by a moisturizing one! I have read about moisture and protein balance and that it’s easier to correct over moisturized hair with a protein treatment than to correct a protein imbalance with moisturizing treatments. However, I still didn’t put two and two together in that a protein treatment should be immediately followed by a moisturizing conditioner.

Revisiting Protein the “Right Way”

So I decided to take a leap of faith and give protein a shot at the title. I picked up the ApHogee 2 Minute Keratin Reconstructor and used it last Wednesday. I wanted to wait until I manipulated my dry hair before giving you all my review. Let’s start with a breakdown of the ingredients, claims and directions:

Ingredients: Water, Cetearyl Alcohol, Polysorbate 60, Behenamidopropylamine Behenatem Stearolkonium Chloride, Cetrimonium Chloride, Cocodimonium Hydrolyzed Hair Keratin, Hydrolzed Mucopolysac Charides, Sodium Coco Collagen Amino Acids, Wheat Germ Fatty Acids, Linoleic Acid, Linolenic Acid, Arachidonic Acid, Squalane, Avocado Oil, Acetimide MEA, Panthenol, Wheat Germ Oil, Jojoba Oil, Tocopherol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Sulfur, Amodimethicone, Polyquaternium 10, Linoleamidopropyl PG Dimonium, Chloride Phosphate, Tallowtrimonium Chloride, Nonoxynol 10, Cocoyl Sarcosine, Sorbitol, Fragrance, Imidazolidinyl Urea, Methylparaben, Propylparaben (emphasis added).

What They Say: Apply on clean hair in shower and rinse to treat brittle hair with cuticle damage and moderate breakage. ApHogee Keratin 2 Minute Reconstructor is a powerful, one step treatment that should be used for home use, between salon visits. This concentrated blend of keratin amino acids, botanical oils, and vitamins does wonders to restore strength and softness to hair that requires a deep, penetrating treatment. It is recommended on tinted, bleached or relaxed hair. ApHogee Keratin 2 Minute Reconstructor helps repair damage caused by chlorine and hard water. It soothes irritated scalp and may be applied following each shampooing until the healthy condition of the hair is restored.

Directions: Gently shampoo hair with ApHOGEE Shampoo. Rinse thoroughly and towel as usual. Squeeze 1/2 ounce into palm. Using fingertips, work evenly through hair and into scalp. For maximum penetration, cover hair with warm towel, or plastic cap, for two minutes.

I highlighted the two “hydrolyzed” ingredients because I recently read this BGLH post, All About Protein Treatments, that stressed an effective protein treatment must contain hydrolyzed proteins as those are the only ones that are the correct size to adsorb, yes adsorb, to the cuticle and patch areas of damage. Adsorb, with a “d,” means it “sticks to and forms a temporary bond.” So, when I was looking for a protein treatment, I was reading the ingredients to look for this. The article also indicated that the hydrolyzed protein should be in the first five ingredients. It actually is the 6th and 7th in this ApHogee treatment. However, since I had read reviews of this product and have seen a lot of people use this over the last year on the hair boards, I figured they fell high enough to be effective. Also, two hydrolyzed proteins at the 6th and 7th positions made up for it not being one at the 5th in my mind!

2/25/12 Edited to add: I pulled the above ingredients list from Sally’s and the same was at Folica. However, when I inspected my bottle due to some comments below, the ingredient list was different! The formula I used is not the same as above. The protein falls at the 7th and 8th positions, mineral oil is at the 5th and there seem to be many other ingredients. I can’t find the ingredient list that matches my bottle online. So, I will update with the actual ingredient list from my bottle when I have time. Sorry for any confusion ladies!

My Review

Okay, now that we have all that out of the way, I’m finally going to give you my review!! So, I used the ApHogee last Wednesday on wash day. I popped it open and took a sniff. I expected a chemical smell, but was pleasantly surprised when it had a light fruity scent, kind of like piña colada to me! After shampooing and rinsing my hair, I applied the ApHogee liberally. The directions indicated to use 1/2 an ounce. However, I suspect that I used closer to an ounce given the length of my hair. The treatment was a translucent white color and the consistency was about that of a lite salad dressing. It wasn’t thick, but it wasn’t overly runny, so it was easy to apply and distribute. I was careful not to manipulate my hair too much and just smoothed it down my hair in 6 sections. I left it in about 10 minutes, though the directions say 2-5. This was not intentional, I was just making my DC to follow the ApHogee, so ran over the 5 minutes.

Once I finished making the DC (warmed JessiCurl Weekly Deep Treatment w/coconut oil, olive oil and honey), I rinsed my hair thoroughly with lukewarm/cool water. Of course, I immediately noticed that my hair felt harder, but it also felt heavier. Then I gently applied my DC. I left that in for about 30-45 minutes with heat and rinsed (I did my entire wash day rituals in the kitchen sink as I had no interest getting in and out of the shower that many times!). Then I styled in the TnC that I posted about here.

What I noticed about the styling session and completed style was that my hair still felt harder than usual and wasn’t as shiny. So, I was not sure if I deep conditioned long enough. It wasn’t super hard though and some olive oil cooking spray helped with sheen, so I kept it moving (Rece also told me later that night that it won’t feel as soft as normal after a protein treatment, even with a moisturizing DC. She said, that’s why she used to alternate ApHogee with the ORS Olive Oil Replenishing Pak). In regard to decreased breakage during wet styling, I can’t give you a read on that because I can never tell. However, I can tell you now, a week later, that I have definitely seen an improvement!! I did a dry twist out on Wednesday night, after 3 days of the TnC and 3 days of an updo. I dry detangled my hair and though I saw a couple of broken hairs, it wasn’t as much as I’d been seeing. I could also tell that my hair was withstanding the manipulation a lot better. It really did feel stronger! But here’s the real kicker. I know this is not supposed to be connected, but y’all, my hair shed after a week of not doing my hair was NOTHING for me. I was astonished by the little amount of hair that I saw!

So yeah, I’m kind of sold now. I definitely think I will be incorporating a protein treatment into my regimen every 6 weeks or whenever my hair seems to be breaking easily when overly soft. Okay, gotta go! I’ll leave you with the results of my dry TnC!

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Have you avoided protein because you believe that you are protein sensitive? Do you think that you’ll revisit the use of protein if you are experiencing breakage?

September Update: Kayla

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Here’s Kayla of the Sixth Wave, with her September update (which was sent to me at the beginning of October and I somehow failed to post! Sorry Kayla!!).

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Flat twist out

Fitness:
I still haven’t been working out consistently. I probably worked out 5 times in September. Most of those times were recently, though, so I’m starting to get back into going to the gym. I’m also still working on drinking enough water.  One thing I have been good about is taking my vitamins.

Hair:
My regimen hasn’t really changed. I don’t have any new products, but I did add some sulfur powder to my castor/coconut oil I’ve been applying to my scalp. Since my hair is a couple of inches longer in the back than it is on the sides, it’s has a mullet-like shape:(. I don’t want to cut it yet, so I’ve been experimenting with different styles to blend the different lengths. I tried my first roller set since I cut my hair earlier this year. I used medium/small rollers to wear it curly and I really liked the results. A week later, I tried a roller set/silk wrap with large rollers.

I think this turned out really nice, but it didn’t really help the mullet situation. The last thing that I tried was a flat twist-out I saw on acurlsbf.com. Instead of 2 flat twists, I did 3.  This is the first time I’ve had a successful twist out.  Before I guess I was doing too many twists. I can see myself doing this style on a regular basis as my sides grow out. Overall I’m happy with my hair progress.

My goal for October is to incorporate trips to the gym into my schedule.

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What are you talking about? I see no mullet! I see nicely layered and gorgeously shiny hair! Love both the roller set and the flat twist out! Can’t wait to read how October went:)!

A Seasonal Do … (Maybe A Please DON’T?)

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by Weusi

Her seasonal do …

SO … we’re in the beauty store (No, I don’t just stand outside or sit in the car anymore … I go in now … all the stuff in these stores amazes me!).

She reminds me that she wants to get a protective style. She says, “So what do you think?”

She continues talking about these double twist that she’s thinking about … but then she slips in that she’d be adding some of this … and she pulls a bag off the wall … HUH!?! REALLY!?!

Then she says … “Or maybe a wig” … something like (whatever she pointed at on the wall) …

*CRICKETS!!!* … *MORE CRICKETS* … THEN … DISTURBING SILENCE …

Now during this seemingly eternal silence, these are the thoughts on my mind:

ok … lets work through this really quickly …
did you really ask me “what do [I] think?”
She says she likes her hair natural …
But … she’s gonna add some really good synthetic hair … but …
The other option is putting someone else’s hair on her head …
WHAT!?! … ARE YOU FOR REAL!?! WHAT KIND OF CHOICES ARE THESE?

NOW, as a man, in an often sexist and patriarchal society, who grew up in a home and around a community where being honest, socially conscious and open-minded were badges of high moral standing, I really have no choice but to side for what is right … and that’s to speak my truth. So, finally I answer.

“Nah … I don’t like either.”

AND … I’m clear about what she asked me. She asked what I thought of the styles. She did not ask my permission for a style. She’s a grown woman. She makes her own decision about how she styles her hair.

I love her … I don’t own her! BUT … BUT NOTHING!!!

There are no buts about it. To me, a part of loving someone means you accept them as they are. You know and trust in the principles that they value, so that when they do things that don’t excite you, you trust that those principles guide their choices.

Many of us (SOs) are happy in an old beat up t-shirt and some jeans … sometimes my/our aesthetic choices need a little fine tuning (but don’t sleep on us … we can dress ourselves so that we turn some heads!). I say that to make the point that many times we trust in your sense of fashion and style and that sometimes our objection to your hair isn’t to the look, because we know that you aren’t gonna do anything that makes you look bad. It’s the process that gets you to the desired look that makes us throw up more of a question than an objection.

And I’ll leave you with this. I know your hair is still natural (even with the hair that’s not yours) and since we’re not gonna tell you “No, you can’t do your hair that way!” Why even asks us or make the comment about your changing style? We’re your SOs … we love YOU … you love your hair (we only like your hair)!

Continue to do what you do …

SHiNE