Daily Archives: June 21, 2012

Heat Wave

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by Weusi

I’ll keep this short …

On the East Coast of North America, there is a heat wave right now.

I know that a lot of people think that dudes think that the more flesh that we see, the sexier. That’s not true. Here’s the truth.

Sexiness is a rooted in confidence. If it’s hot outside and you want to be sexy, these are my suggestions:

Collarbone and shoulder blade exposure are SEXY!

Shoulder, leg and ankle are second tier sexy areas only because they are kind of regular spots.

Midriff and hipbones are sexy sometimes … the exposing of these parts has to look somewhat organic and not too staged!

Oh … and the best way to protect your hair in the heat …

Stay inside with your significant other.

Get naked …

Mess up your hair …

Take a cool shower … together … (co-poo optional!) …

Repeat.

That’s it … for now!

SHiNE

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May/June GOC Update: StayWoo (#1)

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So, I’m quite late but, better late than never … right? Anywho … here goes it:

Hair
I kept my hair in yarn wraps for practically the entire month of May. I’m glad I invested the 17+ hours to do them because May ended up being TREMENDOUSLY busy!

Here are some videos that will explain how I prepped, maintained, installed and styled my wraps.

via GranolaHeads2010

Installation Video

(Yarn Wrap Prep and Maintenance video and Yarn Wrap Styles video )

My hair has grown about 2 inches since March and I have taken off about 1/2 inch (still damaged).

Since I’ve taken my wraps out, I have not kept to any kind of routine. Keeping a routine is hard to do in the summer because I’m a teacher and am “off” during the summer (really … I’m busier in the summer than during the school year).

I can say that I have been on the Curly Girl Method since the beginning of June. I don’t use combs or brushes. I’ve eliminated products with silicone or sulfates. So, here is my “loose” natural hair routine:

  • Prepoo: Tresemme Naturals and Olive Oil
  • Cleanse: DevaCurl No Poo (about once a week)
  • Deep Condish/Pre Poo: Nubian Heritage Indian Hemp & Tamanu Grow & Strengthen Treatment Masque
  • Co-Wash: Tresemme Naturals (whenever needed)
  • Moisturizer: Shea Moisture’s Curl Enhancing Smoothie
  • Seal: Shea butter whip (homemade)

I’ve been doing WNGs, twists and twist-outs. And, just recently, I’ve started braiding the sides up into a mohawk (I’m tired of the floppy sides…awkward!).

Health & Fitness
So, I’ve just recently started a business and have been really busy. When I can get to the gym, I usually do Power Yoga or a class called Body Pump (750+ reps over an hour). I have really started to see improvements.

I have also started going to a chiropractor, because I have had chronic allergies and migraines. I have to tell you … I really feel like a different person. I found out that I had arthritis in my neck, scoliosis in my lower back and a pinched nerve in my tailbone. I began getting adjustments immediately and am really glad that I did.

I think that’s it for now, although this ended up being a May/June update. I’m sure you guys don’t mind!!! Or do you?? 🙂

Talk to you guys later …

Stay

Check out Stay’s other GOC – The Sequel Posts here:

Initial Submission
April Update

Transitioning

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by Lia of Embracing Natural Hair

Transitioning from relaxed to natural is a big decision you have to make if you are considering going natural. First, you want to ask yourself the reasons for going natural. Is it for a change, is it because you are tired of the upkeep of relaxers, experience breakage or damage to your scalp, want to set an example for your daughter, or simply want to embrace your natural hair? Whatever your reason, you must remember it during your transition, especially if it gets challenging along the way. Your initial reason for going natural may be your number one motivation to stick to your transition, no matter what. Transitioning actually starts with a mindset. Once you make the decision to go natural, you have to be mentally prepared for what is to come.

There may be people around you that may not understand your reason for going natural. They may think natural hair looks “nappy” or “unkempt.” However, just know that whatever your texture whether 2c, or 4c, all hair is beautiful! For many years, unfortunately, our society has portrayed natural hair as unattractive and many black women see natural hair as a bad thing. Many black women feel they “have” to have a relaxer or straight hair to look presentable. This is not the case, and once you view natural hair as beautiful and unique, you’ll be more accepting of it.

You must be willing to embrace your natural hair and put aside what anyone else thinks! Don’t get discouraged if others aren’t supportive or if your natural texture isn’t what you hoped for. Learn to work with what you have and enjoy the ride.

When I truly made the decision to go natural, I knew I would have a long road ahead of me, but I was prepared. I did a lot of protective styling for length retention and also to avoid having to fight with the two textures. In the beginning, it was pretty easy, but as months went by, the detangling sessions got more difficult as I battled with the two textures. I wanted to do a 2 or 3 year transition, but at 18 months post relaxer I knew it was time to do the BC!

If you’re on the fence about transitioning, here are some great reasons to go natural:

  • No costly upkeep of a relaxer.
  • No more scalp burns.
  • Thick, full healthy hair (with the right regimen).
  • Beautiful God-given coils/kinks/curls.
  • Versatility in styling natural hair!
  • Easy to style and looks better as the days go by.
  • Can still achieve the look of a sleek relaxer without the permanent commitment of a relaxer.
  • The ease of Wash N Go’s…especially in the summer.
  • Don’t have to avoid your hair getting wet…Natural hair loves water!!
  • Don’t have to worry about “sweating out your perm” when working out.

Just think of transitioning as a journey or race you must take to get you that finish line … you may get tired, you may want to quit, but stick it through and you WILL accomplish your goal!

You can do it!!

Find Embracing Natural Hair on Facebook too!

The Single Strand Knot Dilemma

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I’ve been getting quite a few questions about preventing single strand knots (SSK) lately, so it seemed like the time to do a post devoted to them. I don’t think that there is any way to avoid SSKs entirely … they are just part of the curly hair package … especially when one is frequently wearing WnGs. However, I do think that they can be minimized, so that they don’t ruin the appearance and feel of your hair or impede your ability to retain length.

Prevention/Reduction
In order to keep SSKs at bay, I do the following:

  • Stretch my hair with TnCs, twist-outs and braid outs.
  • Keep my hair moisturized by conditioning (pre-poo, DC and leave-in) and lubricated (sealed with an oil).
  • Fortify my strands with strengthening protein treatments/conditioners.
  • Conduct search and destroys (S&D) during my pre-poo routine on wash day to cut off any split, damaged or knotted hair that I see/feel in the course of finger detangling.
  • Finger detangle to remove as much shed hair as I can prior to washing as loosened strands tend to get captured in curly hair, knotting and wrapping around unshed hair.

These steps seem to help me to reduce SSK and prevent the collateral damage that can be caused by friction between knotted and damaged ends and healthy ones.

SSKs and WnGs
Recently, I started revisiting the WnG and plan to do it more frequently for the summer months. That being said, this means that the first step in my SSK prevention routine is a no-go … i.e. stretching. However, I will continue to employ the other techniques that I mentioned above.

That being said, let me say that I was a regular WnG girl for the majority of my natural hair journey. And, prior to 2010, I did nothing prophylactically to address SSKs other than getting my hair pressed and trimmed every 6 months. I definitely had them, as the ends of my hair would get difficult to detangle and would feel horrible. However, I was still able to retain a good deal of length with these infrequent trims. The following picture from 2006 shows the length that I reached wearing WnGs on a daily basis and just getting trims every 6 months.

So, if they don’t bother you too much and aren’t damaging your hair excessively, you can opt to leave SSKs alone and just get your ends trimmed periodically (every 3-6 months). But, that’s a decision you have to make based on your preferences, goals and what works best for you.

Finally, whenever I am asked about preventing SSKs, I share this cute video, which I previously posted on a GOC update in response to a cry for help.

via BrwnBarbie24

And, more recently, I’ve also been sharing this interesting article that Chy’s Curlz did on using Oil Rinsing as a post-shampoo step that can help minimize SSKs for those regularly rocking WnGs. Finally, Madame Noire provides several tips for preventing SSK in the article, 7 Ways to Keep Your Single Strand Knots to a Minimum.

So, although eliminating SSKs entirely is probably not possible for those who regularly rock curls, there are a few things that one can do to reduce the numbers. With a little trial and error, you can pick and chose the techniques that work best for you!

HTH!

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What techniques have you found to be effective in preventing/reducing Single Strand Knots?