Return of Straight Hair … For a Little Bit

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So, on Sunday, when I washed my hair, I decided that I wanted to lightly straighten it. You see, I  have been dying to try some of the braided styles I’ve seen, especially this flat-twisted bun I posted a while back. Now, I don’t know that my hair is thick enough to accomplish it, but nothing to it but to do it … or at least try it!

Back to wash day.  Since I was leaning towards trying a blow-out or flat-iron, I prepped my hair on Sunday.

Flat-Iron Prep

  • Pre-pooed with Aubrey GPB mixed with Vatika Oil (overnight Saturday into Sunday).
  • Shampooed with Cream and Coco Pumpkin Pie shampoo bar. (Quick Review: This was the first time that I’ve ever used a shampoo bar. I’ve been scared of them for fear of difficulty of application, dryness and tangling. But, I used this and I really liked it a lot!! It lathered quickly, my scalp felt very clean, but my hair wasn’t dried or tangled!! And, it smelled DELISH!!)
  • Finger detangled/conditioned with Herbal Essences Hello Hydration.
  • Deep conditioned with Shea Moisture Raw Shea Deep Treatment Masque.
  • Cooled and sealed with diluted Aubrey Green Team Cream Rinse.
  • Gently squeezed out excess water and blotted hair with Curl Cloth.
  • Applied Roux Fermodyl Leave-in Treatment 619 (porosity correcter/detangler/moisturizer).
  • Applied Aveda Brilliant Damage Control (heat protectant).
  • Placed hair into two braids to dry and stretch.
  • Applied a teeny tiny bit of grapeseed oil to my roots and braids and tied down with a silk scarf.

I went to bed and the next morning, my braids were mostly dry, but not totally. I was surprised that they were as dry as they were given the thickness of the braids! But, anywho, ponytailed and bunned up the braids for work.

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This is the thing. I have a blow dryer at home, but no comb attachment. And, I didn’t feel like doing a tension blow-out as it took  my 2 hours the last time (see here). I actually have a flat-iron too, but it was in the trunk in my “Goodwill donations” bag. It’s one that I picked up at Sally’s a few years ago, but the floating plates always caught in my strands. No bueno. And hence why it’s in the donation bag! So, on a whim, I ran home after work, grabbed a 20% off Bed, Bath & Beyond coupon and headed to Harmon Face Values! I knew that I was probably about to drop a dime on a flat-iron, so at least I could save a little!

I stood in the aisle for a bit, compared a Chi and BaByliss online via makeupalley.com (the BaByliss won), then tried to figure out why the Nano Titanium Pro 1 1/4″ ($119) was so much more expensive than the Porcelain ($50), why there was no lowest temp on the Titanium whereas the Porcelain showed 230° and ended up walking to the register with both. Had the lady open the Titanium Pro for me and we figured out the lowest setting was 300°. So, I decided on that one and walked out with it for $102.71 (after discount and with tax). Taking a page from CurlyNikki’s book and “charging it to the game!!” (Although, I may have to comparison shop and see if I can get this joker for cheaper on Amazon!!)

BaByliss Pro Nano Titanium Flat Iron

So now, it was time to go at it.

Flat-Iron Process

  • I released my braids and separated my hair into 4 sections.
  • I gently combed through the sections from tips to roots with a wide-tooth comb.
  • Applied a little more Aveda Brilliant Damage Control and grapeseed oil
  • I re-twisted each section.
  • Heated the flat-iron at the lowest setting of 300°. (Note: This iron has 5 push-button settings: 300°, 340°, 375°, 410°, 450°)
  • Working from the back left section first, I separated about 1-2 inch thin sections and passed the flat-iron through each section ONCE. I was not going for a bone-straight look. (Note: I didn’t use the chase method. Rather, I just held my hair taught as I slowly passed the iron down the length.) 
  • After I finished flat-ironing each big section, I applied a little bit of Wild Growth Hair Oil light to it and then a little of Bye Bye Parabens silicone-based “Extreme Gloss Oil.”
  • I repeated the process until I was done all four sections.

And here’s a gallery of pics as it appears that WordPress has gotten rid of the slideshow option without telling anyone :/.

shrinkage_straight_comparisonShrinkage is a BEAST!! LOL!!

I was very pleased with the BaByliss Nano Titanium Pro!! It did a good job on one pass, my hair retained a nice sheen even before applying the oil, and I didn’t have that burned hair feel or smell. I’m pleased with how my hair looks and feels … for the most part. I do need a trim (probably about 1-2″) as my ends in the back were feeling rough in some areas (left side especially … my problematic area) and I have some serious gappiness. I do have layers, but the back is looking really janky. I’m not going to cut down to the bulk of my hair as I don’t wear it straight often, curly styles blend the layers and I like to have the length to play with. But, I am going to have the length brought up a little closer to the bulk when I get my hair cut and shaped up in mid-December (yup, got my appointment with Tameeka lined up!). I’m still working towards that elusive full perimeter that I see others achieve *sigh*. I’m hoping that what I’m seeing is the residual of the breakage from lack of protein and excessive shedding that I experienced in 2010 and 2011. Given that my hair grows an average of 6″ a year (maybe only 3-4″ in the crown area … the grey there is always shorter than the grey in the front), that would make sense. So, I’m hoping that I will be able to get to full thickness in a year or two as I feel like, this year, I really have figured out all of the things that I need to have the best regimen for me!

Anywho, I went to bed in a bun last night to smooth it and create some soft waves, hopefully. Given that it’s raining, it may stay in one for the day (I swear, it rains almost without fail when I straighten my hair. I could end droughts with this “gift.”). But, I hope to try a braided bun tonight that I can share with you guys this week *fingers crossed*!!

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Okay, that’s it! Gotta go!

pressed hair

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Do you straighten your natural hair? If so, do you blow-out, flat-iron, both? What products and tools give you the best results?

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24 responses »

  1. Call me EL Cheepo but Im not spending no $100 on a flat iron . Althought I did see a groupon deal for one Im not sure the brand.

    Your Hair is the BOMB.com ! Im getting sick of my hair and Im ready to shop off this ish ! Just frustrated.

    Im too the point where I dont even feel like doing my hair some mornnings and to top it all off I have a daughter who has more hair than me go figure. I think I want to straighten her hair for christmas.

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  2. I’ve been researching good flat irons for a long long time… I think I may take the plunge on yours shelli! They need to pay you for the endorsement lol! It’s a grip but if it last long it might be worth it… The cheap ones do more damage to me..

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  3. I love my CHI smart! Got a great deal on it on QVC plus it came with a 1″ travel size CHI as well. What did the reviews say that made you go with the babybliss instead? I swear by the Aveda damage control. I love the smell of it and you don’t have to use a lot to get the job done. I also love the organix argan blow out cream. sleek hair in one pass as well. I ordered the coco and cream sample pack that they had for $8 + free shipping on black friday. I can’t wait to get it to try out the shampoo and conditioner bar.

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    • Tamara, not a bubble buster at all!! I suspected I might be able to get it cheaper there:)! So, I just ordered it for $84.95 (about $10 cheaper than I paid at Harmon after the 20% discount and before taxes … but Amazon is tax free!! So, I’m saving $18!). I’ll be making that return this week;)!!

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  4. Shelli your hair is absolutely beautiful!! Its so thick, long and healthy!! I really enjoyed your article on ATWC I think you gave great advice esp. on being open to a partner and not having a list of too many specifics ie 6’5, could be Morris Chestnut’s twin etc:) Hope you have a great day!

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  5. Great job! I straighten or rollerset my hair every two weeks. If I don’t, for some strange reason I see a lot of shedding. When I straighten, I typically go to the salon but I’m trying to get in some practice rollersetting so I typically do that.

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  6. Love your hair – you did a great job. I haven’t straightened my natural hair since 2006, I’m a scardy cat. Watching you and others with admiration!

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  7. Looks amazing! I blow dry and straighten with a CHI flat iron I bought about…6-7 years ago on Black Friday for $115 and still works perfectly! Since I went natural, I find that the comb chase method works best and I use a heat protectant/deep condition prior to straightening (which is pretty often).

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  8. your hair is already almost bone straight so you didn’t really need to even use that high temp! It looks like if you had gone to the Dominicans, only I’m sure you didn’t burn the heck out of your scalp and hair like they do!

    I really need to learn how to straighten by myself because other people are way too rough with it.

    so i’m printing this for future ref! way in the future lol

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  9. Your hair is gorgeous! Still can’t believe it’s that long. I remember when we were doing the Kim Coles GOC and you kept thinking ur hair wasn’t growing that much, meanwhile it was growing like weeds! Lol. Now look at you!

    I hope to NEVER feel or smell burnt hair. Eek! My blow dryer has been treating me well though. You may have been right about me being a mostly straight hair natural. I had never considered that until u mentioned it.

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  10. Pingback: Bunning Challenge Week 4: Going Straight « hairscapades

  11. I am seriously considering flat ironing! My daughter has a babyliss and I’ve started reading pre-poo regimens. May try this Saturday or Sunday.

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  12. Pingback: Fairytale vs. Blunt Ends « hairscapades

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