Monthly Archives: December 2012

Flash Post: Curly Fro Results

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Okay, this is for you ladies that aren’t on FB or IG and haven’t seen the results of my Curly Fro set! I will say that, yesterday?  I spoke too soon. I have NOT mastered flat-twisting *smh*. The take down was a struggle because my sections weren’t grabbed “clean” as I flat-twisted. So, I had a lot of tangling, separation and frizz. I had to try to coax sections back into curls and was smoothing on the coconut oil to try to soothe the frizz!! However, overall, I really like the results and got a lot of compliments at work today! It’s different and I think cute. But, I will do regular twists next time and until I get my flat-twisting skills up!!

Alright, I’ll give a full run-down of the set, products and take down with additional pics tomorrow. But, right now, have to take that hint Wei just gave in his last post and get some snuggle time ;)!

Lata Gatas!

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SILENT LETTERS: Django & Lincoln

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django-unchained-poster3by Weusi

I am not a movie person.

I didn’t grow up going to movies. Back in the day, my preference would be to kick a ball around or go run around in the streets. As I got older, the idea of spending an hour or two of my time to watch someone else’s dream/work/story on a big screen made no sense to me. I wanted to use that time to dream, plan, and play with my own ideas. And honestly, even then, if I had some extra change in my pocket, I would rather spend money on food and music! But, don’t get me wrong … there are some films that fueled my creativity and/or life’s passion (I will give you that list in a post later this week!).

Now, sometimes I find myself surprised that I pay more attention to what’s in theaters than I did when I was in high school. This is in part because I had a roommate that was in film school and I learned to respect the art form. Even more of an influence is that I am with a lady that enjoys movies. All that to say, the other day, because I have my own nerdy tendencies that aren’t the same as Shelli’s, I ventured out to see a film on my own. Lincoln.

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As a person that digs history and socio-political stuff, the premise of the film was intriguing to me: Abraham Lincoln being president at a time in this country’s history where the world is looking at him to decide what direction the compass of humanity will point. Too bad the stories that they decided to share in this film didn’t carry the same weight. The stories behind Lincoln’s political maneuvers aren’t as engaging as the tales that powered the principles and fueled the issues of the time. This is where the film faltered. The story never took me to a place of any depth. It scratched the surface, but never took me to an engaging place that I hadn’t already read about. It hinted at some interesting themes and scenarios, but the static pictures in my head were never given life. But don’t get me wrong, the movie was good … but nothing exciting. A few chuckles, some strong acting and a WOW moment at the end that I hope is a film one day. On my scale the film is a 2.78 out of 5 stars.

{Random infomercial voice} BUT WAIT THERE’S MORE

{Back to the regular Weusi voice}

After the movie, I grab a Panera’s Fuji Apple Chicken Salad for Shelli (gotta eat right!) and head home. When I get there, she asks me about the film. I tell her quickly that I am glad that she didn’t go see this with me, because I would have taken a negative hit on my near stellar movie picking reputation. A little more small talk about the day and then Shelli says she wants to go see Django.

Oh, so … did I say that on top of movies not being my thing, I don’t like movies with blood and gore? But … a movie where a slave gets revenge on slave owners?!?! Hmm … plus, we originally looked at it as a form of entertainment. Yet, we also know that there are issues that are deeper than the entertainment factor. And, because I am a man that thinks for myself and likes to stir things up, as much as I believe in working to make things right … and, really-really, my lady wants to see the movie … we go.

Now … I know that there have been all kinds of conversation about Django UnChained. (I say the full name so that I don’t get it confused with the original Django film.

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Should people support it? Should it be taken seriously? Does this film matter? Why? Why not?

You are wise enough to read this blog, so I will respect your intellegence. I am just gonna say a few things.

NOTE: As you read this, please keep in mind that I went to see Django (the D is silent) right after I just saw Lincoln (the second L is silent).

  1. This is an entry for Hairscapades … and I am somewhat embarassed to say that, from the first frames of the film, I start commenting to Shelli how nice Jamie Foxx’s hair looks. Especially since he is a slave.
  2. I am an ex-DJ/music junkie (I take it one tune at a time). The music in this movie is great!
  3. I am one who thinks that people should make their minds up on their own. So, instead of rating and reviewing the movie, all I am going to say is that there are reasons for you to not see the movie as well as reasons for you to go see it.
  4. This is a fictional story.
  5. Jamie Foxx plays a slave.
  6. This a typical Tarantino film.
  7. This is a story about slaves and slave masters.

You can take these and figure out where they sit with you.

For me, I still have an issue with giving my time and money to someone when I have dreams to manifest and should be investing in. But hey … movies make my lady smile. And, if I go with her, I can write a post about them, so then she doesn’t have to write a post!

{Snuggle Time!}

SHiNE

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I’d just like to add … I enjoyed Django Unchained!! It was an entertaining movie. It’s Tarantino, so you know the violence is excessive … and I had to close my eyes and cover my ears during one scene in particular. But, it also had very funny moments and a decent storyline. That being said, I still like Blazing Saddles better ;).

Curls2Envy’s Wash and Go

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by Curls2Envy

For the past 2-3 weeks, I have not been wanting to deal with my hair. Since it’s getting longer, it’s becoming harder to manage. So I’ve done twist outs, mini twist, high buns, low buns, you name it. It was after yesterday’s wash that I realized that my hair tends to tangle more while it’s in a twist out than a wash and go (I thought it was the opposite, since the hair is being stretched). o_O

Anywho … The last time I wore my hair in a wash and go was … um … yeah, I can’t remember. Last night, as I was fighting my hair in the shower (It was a TANGLED JUNGLE), I decided that I was going to just wash, apply a leave-in and just go about my day. I then remembered that the last time I did such a simple regimen, I was walking around looking like Don King.

If I was not going to be twisting my hair up, I needed to apply something with hold. But I did not want to have to go through the whole process of applying leave-in, sealing, smooth/shingle gel then diffusing. Just no.

My first initial thought was to air dry, but again my hair is super finicky. When I air dry, I either get limp, thin, anorexic-looking curls or no curl pattern and frizzy … I am telling you, she isn’t easy to deal with.

So, this is what I ended up doing:

I washed with Cream of Nature (CON) Argan Oil Shampoo and detangled with Tresseme Naturals. My leave-in of choice was Curl Junkie (CJ) Curl Rehab because I wanted to hurry up and use it up (did nothing for me as a DC). Sealed with a tiny bit of Jane Carter Nourish & Shine (JC N&S). And, for gel … I smoothed (NOT shingled) a pea-size amount of Kinky Curly Curling Custard (KCCC) on each section. Yessss, a pea size. Usually when I use KCCC, I need to use a nice amount in order not to get any frizz.  Also, guess what? I did not diffuse or air-dry. (I can imagine the questioning look on your face. lol.)

I PLOPPED into a cotton t-shirt! A first! Well, not a first try, but a first success. I plopped for about 2 hours. When I let my hair down, most of the products were soaked up and hair was about 85% dry. At night, I pineappled and went to bed.

This morning, when I took the pineapple down and took the pics, my hair was still 90% damp. I fluffed a little and shook. Then brought out the camera.


What did I learn?  I learned that I don’t need a TON of gel to get definition and hold and that cotton is not 100% my enemy.

We’ll see how it looks and feel once it’s completely dry. I hope I can get at least 3 days out of this WnG.

Do you prefer to air dry, diffuse or plop? Why?

The Best of Hairscapades 2012

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IMG_5246Okay, it’s not quite a New Year’s kiss but, … you get the idea!

It’s been yet another amazing year for me in regard to this natural hair blogging thing!! Hairscapades has been consistently receiving about 100K views a month since May, celebrated its first year anniversary in June, reached 1M views in August of this year, posted its 1,000th article in October and (ETA) had its highest monthly views EVER (126,656) in December!!! I hosted my first natural hair meet-up in February, a second one in June and also co-hosted two haircut parties this year. In addition, I got the opportunity to be one of the guest bloggers featured in CurlyNikki’s new book, Better Than Good Hair, which will be released at the end of January 2013, and the name “Hairscapades” will soon be seen on the shelves of stores nationwide (no, I’m not launching a product and I can’t give details yet … but I’ll share more about this as soon as I can!). Oh … and on a personal note, I turned 40, enjoyed a budget-friendly awesome vacation in Mexico and attended my sixth NY Comic Con in a row!! Oh, and you know … this other “little” thing happened this year … I GOT ENGAGED!! LOL!

Anywho, to close out the year, I wanted to share the top 10 posts and pages published in 2012 that received the most views. If you missed the 2011 edition of “The Best of Hairscapades,” you can find it here.

And, without further ado … here we go!!

1. How I Retain Length

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2. Terressentials Mud Wash: The Newly Initiated

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3. Afro Puffy Twists: A Protective Style in Review

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4. My Two-Step Henna/Indigo Process

5. I Found It Cheaper!

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6. ApHogee & Me: My 1st Two-Step Protein Treatment

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7. Moisturized Hair: It Starts on Wash Day

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8. Impulsive Blow-Out

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9. The L.O.C. Method

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10. My Spring/Summer 2012 Regimen

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Okay … and because I can, I’m adding to this list some of MY other favorite posts from the year ;)!! I’m sharing these first two because they were pivotal moments for me in my healthy hair journey. Protein was something I didn’t know anything about or understand at all about 3 years ago. In 2010, it was something that I learned a little about and avoided like the plague … eventually, to the detriment of my hair. In late 2011, I stopped fearing “protein sensitivity,” learned how to use protein properly, and began incorporating it into my regimen. And, in 2012, I was able to improve and refine my knowledge and use of protein. These two posts share my 2012 discoveries and learnings.

I ♥ Aubrey Organics

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Can I Over-Condition?

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This next one was from my busiest day ever … May 8, 2012. I had 6874 views and this was the most popular post (probably because it was also featured on CurlyNikki.com on the same day ;)). Hope to set a new record number of views in 2013!!

Protective Styling Boring?

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And finally, these last posts are by the best Hairscapades guest blogger ever … my amazing, loving and supportive fiancé ;). I’m sure that you won’t be surprised by the first two, which are the story of our engagement. And, the last one holds a very special place in my heart. It tells a story of a summer vacation that started horribly, but ended amazing. However, far more importantly, it shares a moment in time that reinforced for me how God always knows what’s best and this includes sending me a very special, loving, patient, kind, supportive, positive life-mate who may not be perfect, but is perfect for me.

An Anti-Valentines Day Love Story

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Off Topic: On Our Engagement

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Everything Happens for a Reason

2012: You brought challenges (family illnesses, super storms, black-outs) and losses (the passing of family and friends), but you also gave joy and triumph. 2013: I know that you will bring a new set of struggles and victories. But, I’m counting on the good far outweighing the bad. So, Here We Come!!

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Did your favorite(s) make the list? If not, what was your favorite Hairscapades post of 2012?

And, more importantly, what were YOUR best moments of 2012?

Flat Twist Success!!!

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I did it!!!! I finally did it! I think I finally figured out how to flat twist properly!! I wanted to try the Curly ‘Fro set that I previously shared here. But, I still had never been able to do a decent flat twist. Well, after completing two lackluster and incorrectly done flat-twists, I decided to check out PGneiicey’s Flat Twist-Out Tutorial again. Zyaran had shared it with me in the comments of a post back in June and I liked it because Shaniece does the twists so large that it is easier for me to see what she is doing.

via PGneiicey

So, I tried again and … “By Jove, I think she’s got it!!”

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The twists in the middle and on the right were done first. The twist on the left was after watching Shaniece do it.

Well, I had to go back to the video several times as I did the first few twists, because I kept forgetting what to do. Finally, I realized that I needed to “pinch” hair from underneath the twist and add it to the hair that is about to go over the section to get the flat twist to look right.

Anywho, I’m so excited that I finally got this down that I had to share. Also, figured it might help someone else out who is struggling with flat-twisting. Remember, “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try, and try again!!”

Now, as to this Curly ‘Fro, we’ll see how many times I’ll have to try THIS before I get it right. Hopefully, the firs time’s the charm. Stay tuned, because I’ll be sharing the results regardless … the Good, the Bad OR the Ugly ;).

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What technique or style did you struggle with, but eventually learned or even mastered? What helped you figure out how to do it?

Coconut Oil Lip Balm

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So, y’all know that I’ve been on a coconut oil induced mixtress binge as of late after discovering this great page, 25 Magical Things to Make with Coconut Oil. Well, my latest endeavor was to try my hand at making a coconut oil lip balm. You see, I’m a Chapstick/lip balm addict! I MUST have something moisturizing for my lips on me at all times! But, I know that Chapstick and many other lip balms contain parabens, which is an ingredient that I’ve been trying to get away from as much as possible. So, when I saw this recipe (which requires minimal ingredients and effort), I decided it was worth giving a try.

via Passionate Homemaking

Ingredients:

2 Tablespoons beeswax (about 1 oz)
2 Tablespoons coconut oil
2 Tablespoons shea butter
12 lip balm containers
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Directions:

1. Melt beeswax in a small pan or crockpot over low heat. Add coconut oil and shea butter until all ingredients a melted. Add a few drops essential oil if desired. I did not use any essential oil and it is smells wonderfully like honey!
2. Using a small medicinal dropper, pour the melted liquid into your lip balm containers. Add a few extra drops to the top after filling each container as the ingredients will shrink as they cool.
3. Cool completely to harden. Cover with cap and decorate or label as desired.

Well, first I had to get a couple of the “ingredients.” I had the coconut oil and the shea butter, but needed the beeswax and lip balm containers. The article on Passionate Homemaking had links to a seller, but I decided to check out Amazon, since I had reward points available, also wanted some coco butter and could potentially get free Super Saver shipping ;). So, I hopped on Amazon.com and purchased a bag of five 1 oz. bars of beeswax for $6.35 and a pack of 10 clear .15 oz. lip balm containers for $11.97. Not bad, but learned from a reader, Cheryl, that I could have done better on the lip balm containers by using “Amazon Prime” in my search terms and digging a little further in the results. She found 25 black containers for $13.97!! Live and Learn!!

Anywho, yesterday I got home and my Amazon shipment was at the door! I was sooooo tired because I’d been on the road for several hours, stuck in horrendous traffic on the turnpike as I was returning home from south Jersey. But, after changing and chilling for a bit, I couldn’t resist taking a stab at the lip balm recipe. And, let me tell you, it was soooo easy and quick!!! I grabbed an eye dropper from a hair product and cleaned it with some soapy water, then grabbed my Maychang essential oil and got to work!

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I decided to throw the balms into the fridge after finishing them last night. However, that was NOT a good idea! LOL!! The contents got too hard and I wasn’t able to turn the knobs to make the balm rise out of the container. But, when I placed one of the containers high over a burner to allow it to warm a little, it worked like a charm. So, in the future, I know to just let them cool at room temperature.

I used the balm last night and today and it’s very smooth and silky feeling. It doesn’t feel as thick or hard as chapstick, but it feels moisturizing and not at all waxy so far! So excited to have a natural and paraben free lip balm that is so easy to make!!

Finally, next time that I have extra, I’m going to try the hard lotion bars! At the end of the recipe post, the author indicated that leftovers can be poured into an ice cube tray to make hard lotion bars!! LOVE it!! Shoot, why wait for next time and leftovers?!?! I just might make another batch of the balm today!! I’m guessing that I can just store the hard lotion bar in a sandwich bag!

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Smooches!

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Are you a Chapstick addict? Would you ever try making your own? If you’ve made your own lip balm, what ingredients do you use in YOUR recipe?!? Any tips or tricks to share?

Caught!

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weiscarf2by Weusi

Yes. It was me. Obviously.

Umm … ok … yes, I did it. But … uhhh … for the record? The smile was because I was on the phone with a friend who I hadn’t spoken to in 15 years.

Aaaand the full story is that … Shelli left out the part where she threw the doo rag thingy on the floor and I responded, “Now if I would have thrown your doo rag down!?!” Granted, I haven’t worn a doo rag/stocking cap since the late 80s (for the record, my waves were serious!). But, it was the principle … so, I put it on in jest.

Well, I guess that you may also want to keep in mind that despite our usually exceptional communication … the reasons behind my actions never really came out my mouth. In part, because I got the phone call from a long time friend!

And that is all I am gonna say about that …

And yes … I LOVE YOU SHELLI!

* Pop, I spoke to York … who is now Dr. York!