Daily Archives: August 7, 2012

Newly Natural: Tahirah’s HairStory

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Describe yourself in 100 words or less.
My name is Tahirah, my friends call me Tai. I am a 22 year old art student,I love art, design, fashion, music, crafts and anything D.I.Y. I am not a talkative person, but more of a thinker and writer. But, all who know me know my true self comes through regardless. My motto is, “Actin non verba,” meaning action not words in Latin.

What prompted your decision to go natural?
I had been relaxed for about 10 years. I got my first relaxer at 11 when I was tired of wearing my hair in braids all of the time. My mother did a home perm for me until I was about 14. Then, I stopped relaxing my hair for a couple years; I just wet it and slicked it back with gel or wore a puff with a head band. I did not take care of it at all. At 16, I went back to relaxers, doing them myself, and commenced all other forms of hair damage, bleaching, dying and flat ironing … I ruined my hair. Fast forward to 2010 when I discovered hair blogs and YouTube videos. I decided to go on a long relaxed hair journey … which meant less heat, more conditioning and stretching my relaxers. I was on a six month stretch … yes, six months!

When I discovered natural hair blogs and vlogs, it made me realize that I didn’t NEED a relaxer like I would say when I saw my new growth. MopTopMaven’s blog was my first natural hair inspiration and many others followed. I reaserched and watched YouTube videos of beautiful women embracing their texture … so, I decided to try it since I had already gone so long without a relaxer. I thought my real healthy hair journey should not include damaging my hair with chemicals.

How long did you transition before you big chopped?
I transitioned for about 10 months before I big chopped. I had never had hair so short and I was insecure about parting with my BSL relaxed ends. I planned to go a year or two before cutting it, but with so much inspiration around me from online to when I went out, I would drool over natural curls so much that I needed to see my own.


When and how did you big chop?
I prepared myself with styles and products from product reviews and YouTube videos. I bought Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie and Eco Styler Olive Oil Gel. I had my scissors already and the day planned out. At about 9 or 10 at night, I cut the relaxed ends myself on June 21, 2012, a week before my 22nd birthday.

How did you feel immediately before and immediately after your big chop?
I was so excited before I cut it and, immediately after, I was kind of in shock about how I looked … it’s a lot to process when you have long hair down your back one day and a short ‘fro the next. I was happy, but it took me a few days to get used to it.

How do you feel now?
I am LOVING my hair now. I was so apprehensive for nothing, because it has been the best experience so far. I am fully embracing the short ‘fro and learning to just let go and let my curls be wild and free. I looks good whether or not I choose to do anything to it and revel in it.

What is your current regimen? Go to products?
Right now, I wash my hair once a week with Burts Bee Very Volumizing Pomegranate Shampoo and DC with ORS Replenishing Pack. I finger coil and rock a coil out or wash and go using Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie and Eco Styler Olive Oil gel. During the week, I spray my hair with water and seal with my mix of olive, coconut, grapeseed, jojoba and castor oils. I co-wash in between, if I feel I need to, with Tresemmé Naturals Nourishing Moisture Conditioner.

What are your hair plans/goals?
My hair goal is to maintain a healthy head full of curls and see how long it can grow. Growth is not as important to me, since I fell in love with this length. But I’m looking forward to it.

Do you have a hair crush? If so, who and why?
I have quite a few actually … Amel Larriuex, Corrine Bailey Rae, Yaya Dacosta, Chaka Kahn …

Who is your favorite natural blogger, YouTuber and/or Fotkier and why?
My favorite YouTuber is Naptural85. I love her channel. Her tutorials are amazing! I even love the music she uses.


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SO Lurkers … ???

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by Weusi

Hello everyone …

I’m sure that you all saw Shelli’s LURKERS re-post. I did.

And … I don’t think that I count as a lurker, but I tend to view the site a lot more than I comment or post on it. If this was real life, I’d kinda be a creepy dude, so I just feel better saying hello to everyone here … so, HELLO!

I also want you to know that I dig all of your support on my S.O. He Says guest posts. Let me know what you’d like to see more of. And, let me know if there are lurkers to my column. Are there any? I know there is one. HI MOM! (Pops, don’t respond for her!) Are there any S.O.’s that read this?

And, for those that still have questions about marriage plans … there should be a post on that soon.

NOTE: Mom and Pop … you don’t need to comment! I know that you are waiting for some answers. I’ll let you know before anything is posted! LOVE YA!

(p.s. … I know … These comments directed to my parents may seem a little awkward. But … my parents read Shelli’s blog more often than we speak. In our family, that’s fine.)

SHiNE

Organix Brazilian Keratin Smoothing Treatment

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A little backstory on this one. I discovered this next guest blogger and her site a couple of weeks ago. I started perusing her blog and was so impressed by the content of the site, the depth of the writing and, of course, the beautiful lady and her gorgeous hair! Well, when I came across a post entitled, “How I Got Overwhelmed with My Hair and Did Something About it,” I was intrigued.

You see, although I am not interested in keratin treatments, I know some naturals want to learn more about this, purportedly, non-permanent option to smooth frizz and curls. This guest post is to share one natural’s experience with a keratin treatment. I’ll end this with a caveat, take heed to the advice at the end ;). Enjoy!

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by GG of the Write Curl Diary

Last summer, after three years of being natural, I got fed up with my hair. It seemed thick and healthy from afar, but up close my ends were very shabby and I was dreading washing and styling it. I never questioned going natural, but I knew that I needed a change. Today, I’d like to share with you what I did and what I learned from it.

Written August 30, 2011:

I’ve been bunning my hair pretty much all summer and was getting pretty tired of wearing it up. It’s been really humid though, so every time I did wear it down, I had to go through massive detangling sessions afterwards. Long hair is a lot of work (more to follow on this). During hair sessions, I was noticing that my ends were looking pretty shabby in some places. So, I decided that my hair needed to be stretched for awhile.

I blow-dried my hair, which was an exhausting, sweaty process, only to find even more damaged ends than I originally thought. Let me dispell a couple of myths right here and now. 1) Natural hair can have just as much damage as relaxed hair if you don’t stay on top of it. 2) Blowdrying is not necessarily a bad thing. I get less knots and tangles when my hair is blow dried so, for me, the pros outweigh the cons. Going forward, it’s very likely that I’ll be blow drying my hair after washing more often than not. This should only amount to about twice a month at the most.

At this point, I realized that I needed a professional trim and that my usual search and destroy session was not going to help my situation. If you’ve been reading for awhile, then you know my goal was for my hair to reach waist length (stretched) by the end of 2011. I didn’t want my ends to be thin, knotty and damaged; barely scraping my hair goal length. So, I got the trim. I’m telling you, if your hair is misbehaving, unmanageable, uncontrollable, you may very well need your hair trimmed. Don’t worry about losing the length. Remember, your hair is only as healthy as you keep your ends because, ultimately, the damage is going to travel up the hair shaft and detract from the strength of your hair.

Anyway, with my fresh trim, I felt like I had a clean slate and I wanted to wear my hair straight-ish for awhile to keep the knots away. I’d been considering this Organix Brazilian Keratin Smoothing Treatment for awhile because I have a friend who’s been using it on her natural hair and she loves it. After researching the product and getting comfortable with it, I decided to bite the bullet and try it. I loaded up the kids and we went on a field trip to Ulta (or “Mommy’s toy store,” as they like to call it).

What sold me on it is that:

  1. It’s temporary – the effects last for about 30 days or less and wash out gradually;
  2. It’s basically a conditioning treatment;
  3. It’s gentle enough to be used even on relaxed hair;
  4. It would cut down on my blowdrying time;
  5. It would decrease frizz and tangles even in humid weather.

Numbers 3 and 5 are huge for me right now. Between my damaged ends and the humidity poofing up and tangling my hair, wearing my hair down was not working out for me before the trim and the smoothing treatment. After the treatment, I’m able to wear my hair down and my hair pretty much stays where I put it. It’s still thick and full, but it’s easier to manage. Mission accomplished.

Here we are, basically a year later, and I have to say that when I get frustrated with my hair, I do two things. I get a trim and I reach for some type of protein treatment. I’ve only done one more Brazilian Keratin Treatment since August 2011 and I never experienced any negative side effects. I’ve also tried other protein treatments and I find that in combination with a good trim, they really revitalize my hair. My best advice to you when considering what products you will or won’t put in your hair is to:

  1. Do your own research.
  2. Don’t put anything in your hair without doing a patch test to see if you have a reaction.
  3. If you’re a do-it-yourself kind of girl, be sure to follow the directions perfectly. Be aware of how your hair needs change as it gets longer, so you can adjust accordingly.

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Have you used a “temporary” keratin treatment? Which one? What was your experience with it? Would you use one again?