Category Archives: Second Wave

Michelle Howard Smith’s Final GOC Update

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Michelle (First Wave) of Radiant Brown Beauty

So here’s my Grow Out Challenge final post :-).

Hair Growth:
Since the challenge began, my hair has grown about 3 1/2 inches and I lost about an inch from trimming and a little breakage. From October of last year to date, I have 2 1/2 inches of retained length. That’s basically a 1/2 inch a month of growth.


I have yet to straighten my hair with heat, but I’m actually considering it in April. That will be a year since I’ve heat styled.

Regimen and Products:
Anyway, my winter hair care regimen is only slightly different from my summer regimen. The first change I’ve made is to do everything in four box braids (I’ll continue doing this). My products are mostly the same, but I used the Jane Care Nourish and Shine as a triple threat for protection *lol* versus how I used to use it before to just lay my edges down after using aloe vera gel.

  • Pre-poo: Vatika Oil
  • Wash (alternate): Hair Rules Shampoo, Shea Moisture Coconut & Hibiscus Shampoo and Shea Moisture Hair Thickening Shampoo
  • Moisturzing deep conditioner: I used a lot of samples that I needed to get rid of (too many to number *lol*), but I’m returning to my regularly used As I Am Naturally Hydration Elation. I finished up the Shea Moisture Deep Treatment Mask, to which I added Brahmi oil. It has greatly improved the condition of my scalp. I’ll continue to use Brahmi but I’m not repurchasing the Deep Teatment Mask. I always have to doctor it up with something and that shouldn’t be the case.
  • Rinse out conditioner using the Cool and Seal technique: Hello Hydration
  • Protein Treatment/Conditioner: I still use Jamaican Black Castor Oil’s Protein Treatment (love this stuff) every other week or so.
  • Leave In conditioner: Kimmaytube Leave-in or As I am Naturally Leave-in
  • Sealer: Jojoba Oil to the length of the strands and JBCO on the ends. I top that off with Jane Carter Nourish and Shine.
  • Styler: I am not really using styling creams right now, but I most recently tried Jane Carter Curl Defining Cream. See my review of that product here.

I’ve also continued to henna my hair – down from every 3-4 weeks to every 4-6 weeks. I think I’m going to switch to a henna gloss going forward since it’s an easier application.

Fitness:
I hadn’t started out seeing this as part of my Grow Out Challenge, but I’ve been inspired :-). I now work out 6 days a week, alternating my work-outs with cardio and muscle conditioning/sculpting. It’s been rough, but so far I’ve been consistent for 6 weeks with only 1 rest day.  I started when I began Weight Watchers in January and, so far, I’ve lost a total of 9 pounds. My goal is 50 pounds total.

Oh and, by the way, I’m on the Lean Cuising kick *LOL*. I don’t really like boxed food, but it’s easy for lunch so I have them at lunch time.  I tried Healthy Choice.  YUCK. They are the worst.  The Smart Ones are OK. It’s hit or miss with those.

Final Thoughts:
I credit my length retention to protective styling and keeping my hair sealed, which in turn keeps it moisturized. I also continue to detangle my hair with my fingers and sometimes a Denman when my hair is soaking with conditioner. I never have to add a moisturizer to my hair, which is amazing. My ends stay moisturized and silky smooth until wash day (Sat/Sun). I credit the Jamaican Black Castor Oil for that.

I’m also now using a hair journal where I’m tracking what I use and how I care for my hair. The purpose is to keep track of what’s NOT working more than what is. I also am looking to see if my growth accelerates with the addition of healthier eating and exercise.

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If you would like to see all of the updates of any of our GOCers, just enter their name in the “Search” box on the right ——->>>>! The results will return all of their updates (and guest posts) since the beginning of the GOC!! See where it all began and how they’ve progressed over the course of the challenge!

Final GOC Update: Adrienne

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by Adrienne (Second Wave) of Natural Embrace

Hair:
I didn’t really get the hang of my regimen until November, so I can’t say that this challenge was completely successful. But in the last few months, I have noticed that my hair does seem healthier, if not much longer. The first picture shows what little growth I’ve achieved (after a brief stint at straightening that I decided not to finish and opted to try Naptural85’s Winter Wash and Go instead). I think most of that was due to starting my method of leaving in a deep conditioner instead of a lighter leave-in.

July 2011


January 2012

I love forward to taking part in the next GOC segment! I’m going to continue with my regimen. But, until the next challenge starts, I’ve decided to do something a little different. At the end of January, I installed yarn braids and I did them all myself! I didn’t think that I could do it, but it was so much easier than I expected. It also only took about ten and a half hours, which was nice because I’d been reading posts about people taking 20 to 24 hours! My braids aren’t very small and the braiding isn’t perfect, but it’ll hold together for the next six weeks until I take them out, take a two week break, and put them back in.

Prior to putting them in, I made sure my hair was super moisturized and sealed, that way I won’t suffer from any dryness
over the next few weeks. I’m only going to do this style for the remaining cold weather season. I can’t see this style working for me in the summer since I think I’d get too hot. I wish I had done the yarn braids sooner! I love them and I love that I can just get up and go in the mornings. I want to try curling the ends some time, because I’m not digging the straight look too much and think the curls would be a cute addition.

Fitness:
As for fitness, I did pretty well in January. I made it to the gym about four times a week. And, in the last two weeks, I started the Insanity workout and … well the name is pretty accurate. I thought I was getting into shape by running on the treadmill and doing Stairmaster. But clearly my cardio is lacking, because a thirty minute cardio segment on Insanity literally leaves me gasping on the floor. I’ve had these DVDs for months and I’m only just now doing this workout. I don’t know what took me so long, but I’m glad I started! I don’t follow the six days a week schedule, but I try to do at least five, so hopefully I’ll start to see results soon!

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Success isn’t always just the goal, it’s often the journey Adrienne! So, with that said, I’d call this GOC a success as you’ve learned how to better care for your hair during this process. So, congrats! And, can’t wait to see what you’ll accomplish and learn in Round Two!!

Here’s a little tip! If you would like to see all of the updates of any of our GOCers, just enter their name in the “Search” box on the right ——->>>>! The results will return all of their updates (and guest posts) since the beginning of the GOC!! See where it all began and how they progressed over the course of the challenge!

December GOC Update: Adrienne

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by Adrienne (Second Wave) of Natural Embrace

December was a good month in relation to hair. I’ve finally seen some noticeable growth. Hallelujah! My hair does grow! This is great news, it really is, but the problem is that I’ve achieved this growth from basically not messing with my hair at all for weeks at a time. I basically wash my hair on Saturday or Sunday, deep condition and rinse my hair with cool water.

Something new I added in the last month and a half, which I believe has contributed to my growth, is using another deep conditioner as my leave-in and then double sealing the moisture in with hemp seed oil, followed by a thicker butter or oil. Then I cornrow my hair and that’s it! My hair stays super moisturized all week and I don’t even have to re-moisturize and seal during the week. When I go to work or go out, I either wear a wig or a satin cap with a beanie. It’s been the easiest styling all month! Recently, I went a whole two weeks without washing and my hair still felt soft, moisturized and pretty darn good! Doing this routine is really working out, so I’m going to keep it up for the rest of winter.

The only flaw is that I want to wear my hair out more for spring and summer and I worry that I won’t be able to retain my length if I’m manipulating my hair too much. So, does this mean that I have to protective style forever? What’s the point of long hair if I won’t get to show it off?!

Well, let’s see if I can even reach my goal of shoulder length by the end of this challenge (and BSL overall) and we’ll see what kind of regimen tweaking I need to do.

I was going to take pictures of my hair stretched, but since my current regimen is working so well, I didn’t want to mess with my hair too much. I’ll save those pictures for the end of the challenge and I haven’t decided if I’ll straighten my hair or just do twists or something.

The picture above, with the fringe in front, is how I wore my hair for New Year’s Eve. I love the versatility and simplicity of a turban! I almost tucked the bangs away too, but figured for one night it couldn’t hurt to have that much hair out. The bun below is how I wore my hair New Year’s Day, while out and about, before going home to do my wash regimen.

As for working out, I managed to get to the gym a lot more than I was expecting. I have committed to getting to the gym in between jobs and so far it’s working out great. Since working out more often, I’ve noticed I feel better overall. On a whim, I got on the scale and discovered I lost 7 pounds! Granted, I think everything I lost was muscle from not working out for an entire month in November, but still, it was nice to see the scale looking lighter. Hopefully, I can keep it off and tone up by the time summer arrives.

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That’s great news about your hair growth and fitness progress Adrienne! Congratulations!! Your dedication to finding a regimen that works for you is obviously beginning to pay off. Now … where can I get that FAB scarf?!? LOL!

November GOC Update: Adrienne

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by Adrienne (Second Wave)

Hair:

It was another month of hiding the hair. Only this time, I hid my hair with a wig. The last two weeks of November, I kept my hair in cornrows going straight back and under a wig. I like not having to do my hair, especially with my busier schedule. I do need to make sure I unbraid my hair every weekend to wash and deep condition. My hair is feeling a little dry, so I know I need to moisturize more. I’ve tried deep conditioning with the braids in, but felt like some parts of my hair were missing out. Also I’ve come to accept that I’m just a slow grower. I’m serious, my hair doesn’t even grow ¼ inch a month … I probably get that every three months. It’s snail’s pace slow and I’m at a loss as to why. I’m taking vitamins, I drink water, I’m gentle with my hair, I moisturize and seal … what am I doing wrong? I’ve tried every hair vitamin (biotin, Nioxin, and I’m currently on TreasureLocks Growth Vitamins plus Garlic to lessen shedding). Why does it seem that I’m not seeing any results like everyone else? Maybe my regimen needs to be tweaked with. Maybe I need to DC twice a week instead of once … I don’t know. I’ll take any advice right now.

My plan for December is:

  • Wear two strand flat twists six days a week
  • Spritz and seal hair every night
  • During the day, either wear my wig (with a satin cap underneath) or sometimes I’ll skip the wig and just wrap my hair in a cute scarf.
  • On the seventh day, I’ll take down the twists, mud wash and deep condition, moisturize, seal and twist back up.

Hopefully this will mean I see some length retention.

Exercise:

Yeah … not so much. November wasn’t a very productive month in the working out department and I’m afraid December won’t be any better. My schedule just doesn’t permit lengthy workouts. The most I’ve been doing is taking the dog on a quick twenty-minute run in between jobs. I don’t really have time to get to the gym to lift weights. But I’m vowing to make it to this Body Works class on Saturday mornings, which involves weights, lunges, and well … the whole body, hopefully that’ll do!

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Let’s make this a “Got Skills?” segment too!

Adrienne, it sounds like your regimen is pretty solid to me! I think that you just have to give it time. Remain consistent and keep protecting your hair and ends to promote length retention. Even if your rate of growth is slower, your hair IS growing. If I remember correctly, you have a medical condition that might be impacting your rate of growth too, right? So, you have to consider that in the equation.

I would suggest a few things though. Perhaps try scalp massages (daily or as frequently as you can), with or without oil, to stimulate your follicles. If you can/want to use oil, you could try my essential oil mix or maybe check out the suggestions in BGLH recent article, 8 Herbs and Oils that Promote Hair Growth. Also, take a look at your diet. There was another really good article on BGLH entitled, 13 Nutrients that Promote Hair Growth and is about getting these vitamins and minerals via whole food sources, rather than supplements. Look at your diet and see if you are getting these via your food, rather then relying wholly on supplementation.

Also, try to get your few minutes of exercise in a day. You don’t need a lengthy work-out your 20 minutes sounds fine. You just need something that gets the blood pumping. I definitely think that my growth rate is increased and the health of my hair is improved when I’m exercising regularly. That’s all I got (and I’m sure that it’s more than enough ;))!

What do you think ladies? Any suggestions for promoting hair growth? Have you found something that really works for you?

October/November GOC Update: Miche’al

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Miche’al (Second Wave) checks in with an October/November update!

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What month are we in???? I can’t remember the last time I did an update!

My Hair:

Regimen is the same, but I have been wearing it up in protective styles more. One thing I did this month was my 2nd attempt (or maybe 1st) at a roller set. The picture above represents the outcome. Not bad, I say. But like I told Shelli and Rece, I did bun it after sporting it to church. Here are the steps I took to achieve my semi-ok roller set:

Materials:

  • Herbal Essences Anti-Frizz Conditioner
  • Earth Science Olive & Avocado Deep Conditioning Masque
  • Infusium 23 Leave-In Treatment in a spray bottle (to keep the ends wet; as well as to smooth and strengthen the ends)
  • Coconut oil
  • 10-15 magnetic rollers
  • 10-15 duckbill clips to hold rollers in place (I don’t use the holders that come with the rollers because, they leave an indentation on the hair)
  • Comb for detangling
  • Hooded hair dryer

Procedure:

  1. Co-washed with Herbal Essences Anit-Frizz Conditioner and detangle.
  2. Deep conditioned with Earth Science Olive & Avocado Deep Conditioning Masque.
  3. Part hair into 3 sections (side, middle, side) and leave hair soaking wet.
  4. Start in the middle, part the hair sections a little less than the width of the roller.
  5. Spray ends with Infusium 23 and apply a pea size amount of coconut oil on the ends; comb through thoroughly.
  6. Roll hair without too much tension on scalp; secure rollers with duckbill clips.
  7. I sat under the dryer for about an hour and then went to sleep.
  8. Before unrolling, I made sure that the hair was completely dry.
  9. I fluffed curls and that was it.
  10. Second day I was bunning!!!

My diet has been the same, but my exercise game has failed completely. I prefer to run and the weather has prevented me from doing that. I should invest in a treadmill.

‘Til next time Blessings to all!!!

Miche’al

 

October GOC Update: Taylor

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Okay, can you say stunning?! Taylor (Second Wave) didn’t reveal her “gorgeosity” to us in her original GOC submission pics. So, imagine my surprise when I opened her first update to find this beautiful smile and head of hair staring me in the face!

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New cut!

Hey, Taylor here.

Wow, has it really been three months already? Sheesh!

So, let me break down the last three months right quick. Shortly after starting the GOC, I was convinced that I started to see a lot of short, broken hairs while washing and styling and had deemed my hair un-workable for the moment and decided to get my hair braided (singles, box braids, whatever you like to call them). I had those in for about 6 or 7 weeks.

 Pre-braids

Box braids

Upon taking the braids out, the growth looked really awkward with my hair being two different lengths from me growing out my mohawk. So, just recently, I cut it a little … Aaah!

Being a little short of funds, I took a trip to my local Super Cuts for the cut. Needless to say, the little Cambodian woman knew nothing about cutting natural African-American hair! It’s not like I’m a cosmetologist or anything, but her technique was all wrong to me . So, I left out of there with about 3 to 4 inches cut off the top, where a lot of damage and awkward length was, and about 2 inches off the back, where it was longer also, and a trim on the shortest length. I like it though, so it’s not totally ruined.

My routine hasn’t changed much. Products are pretty much the same also:

  • I still wash/condition/DC weekly with Trader Joe’s Nourish Spa, Aussie Moist  and generic brand Matrix Biolage Conditioning Balm.
  • Leave-in: Kimmaytube’s recipe
  • Seal: coconut oil
  • I will be doing a henna treatments monthly (I have done 4 already)
  • Still have not found a protein to use.

Sorry, I don’t really have comparison photos right now because of the hair cut. I don’t think I will do an official one until the end of the challenge to surprise myself *haha*.

I hope that all the other GOCers are having just as much fun as I am! We’re halfway there ladies, let’s finish with a BANG!

Perm rod set, pre-haircut

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Love, Love, LOVE your new cut Taylor!  OMGosh! If that woman didn’t know what she was doing, you sure could have fooled me!!

So, it seems salon visits are the topic of the week as I received three e-mails this week about them! I feel a post coming!! 

October GOC Update: Adrienne

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October, my hair was mostly twisted up and covered and that’s probably how the rest of winter is going to go, with the exception of maybe wearing a wig from time to time (I just bought my first one … not sure if I’ll have the guts to wear it). I’ve been super hair lazy in the sense that I don’t really want to do any fancy styling, plus it is cold out so I don’t want to wear my hair out. I’ve actually fallen in love with chunky hats lately and I even invested in a few Threadmill hats (satin-lined of course … can’t wait to go home tonight because I think they arrived in the mail)! Over my twists, I just toss on a satin bonnet, followed by the beanie and it’s been instant styling. Every night I continue to moisturize and seal.

One new product I’ve incorporated into my regimen is the Terressentials Mud Wash. I love this stuff! Dentangling has never been better and my hair always feels great after using it. I haven’t used a real conditioner all month, just homemade deep conditioners once a week, followed by my aloe vera juice and water spritz and sealing with whatever oil I have on hand (shea butter, coconut oil, castor oil, baby oil, etc). Sometimes I will use my Karen Body Beauty Sweet Ambrosia as a leave-in, but probably only once a week, if that. Mostly, it’s just my spritz. Since my hair feels pretty good, I’ll keep this up for now. I know my hair is growing  and I’m back to where I was before my cut back in September, so forward I go!

As for fitness, October was hit or miss. One week I’d make it to the gym five times, another it would only be twice. I’m not too worried about it because I’ve been eating well and drinking water, and I’ve lost only about two pounds … but it’s something! I’d like to say that I’m going to be able to work out more this month, but I just picked up a second job, putting me at 60 hours a week and awkward work hours. And honestly, I’m not sure when I’ll have the time Monday through Friday … but, I’ll figure something out. The next few months will be a challenge exercise wise, but at least my hair won’t suffer for it!

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Don’t worry guys. I already told Adrienne that we’re going to need to be seeing her Threadmill haul!!

Okay, my inner PJ is acting up again ladies!! Who else has tried/uses the Terressential Mud Mask? Which one(s)? What do you think? I’ve been hearing good things about it for a while now and I know that Naptural85 swears by it. But, I’ve also read a couple of negative reviews too. So, what’s the deal-io?? Inquiring minds (mine ;)!) want to know!!

(Adrienne, we might need a full review from you on this one!)

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;)?

September Update: Krystal

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First waver Krystal gives us her status update and a video!  

by Krystal aka Kaligirl1980

So it has been nearly two months since I committed to this GOC and overall I’m quite happy with myself when it comes to hair. Not so much with my fitness. I’ll talk about what I think derailed my progress and how I plan to get back to my fit and healthy state.

Hair Progress:

I started out with a very basic plan; minimal to no heat,no harsh chemicals and make sure that I condition my hair. I ordered the Dabur Vatika coconut oil with the lemon grass and henna in it and used it ONCE. I know some people are a fan of the stuff, but I think it stinks and I can’t stand to be in my own presense. However, I have replaced the coconut oil with almond oil. I like it and will stick with it until I run out. I’ll go back to coconut oil later just to see the difference. I have been using the DevaCurl One Conditioner and the DevaCare No-Poo cleanser since I have some color in my hair. Both products leave my hair feeling and smelling wonderful. I love then both and plan to buy more when I run out. I try not to cleanse more than once a week. I co-wash in the middle of the week, when I would have normally washed. My hair seems to like it, so I’m going to keep that part of the regimen. I have also added Herbal Essenses Hello Hydration to the mix when I don’t want to burn through my DevaCurl conditioner. It feels and smells great. Who would have thought that such a cheap conditioner would be so wonderful? I have hennaed twice so far, but realized that I ordered the “cheap” Jamila Henna that is in the celaphame packet. I’m going to finish it out and then go with the high quality stuff later. Last but not least, I love the Kimmaytube leave-in conditioner. It really brings out my curls.

As much as I like the way the Shea Moisture Deep Treatment Masque seals my ends for Braid and Curls, it makes a horrible deep conditioner, especially on wet hair. It’s OK as a deep treatment on dry hair. I don’t mind repurposing products, so I won’t throw it out, but I probably won’t buy it again when I run out.

Styling Issues:

I have made several attempts to wear my hair in twists as a protective style and learned that my hair just doesn’t like to hold twists. By mid-day they begin to unravel or look fuzzy.

Also, I find that the results of a twist out are too similar to my WnGs to warrant all of that extra work (see undone twists pic and black dress pic).

Mini-twist twist out

Perhaps I could try using pure shea butter to lock the ends together. Any suggestions? My hair is a lot like my mom’s. It’s a gift and a curse. While I would love to wear buns, my hair is a little too short right now. Give it 6 more months and I think it’ll look better in a bun. 

For now, I will stick with braid and curls and wash and go’s as my staple styles. I usually dry with my flour sack towel, but if I’m going out with friends, I’ll do some low level manipulation by using my diffuser. I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve used it. To add in some visual interest, I use bobbie pins to hold flat twists and bumps in the front where my bangs are. The best thing about going curly is that I’ve been more creative with curly hair than with straight hair. My biggest challenge is keeping my hair conditioned. I have to remember to condition daily since I don’t do protective styling.

WnG

Fitness:

Is it me, or does fitness fall by the wayside when men enter the picture? Am I the only one who has this problem? Anyway, things were fine with fitness until I started seeing a wonderful man. My whole routine was turned upside down and I’m in the process of recalibrating. I refuse to gain “happiness” weight. I faithfully worked out in the morning from 5 to 6, but when I started dating this guy, I wouldn’t workout as hard because I was trying not to sweat out my hair so that I could be cute when I saw him after work. Well, keeping my hair cute hasn’t been good on my waistline. I have gained 8lbs. That weight will be gone by the end of this month! I’m been inspired by Shelli and her dedication to fitness. Her body looks amazing. I’m back on my workout grind and I will not stop until I get to 140lbs; I’m 153lbs right now. It’s not showing yet, but I feel it and that’s what really matters.

Part of my success will be in creating new workout routines for myself so that I don’t get bored and so that I maintain muscle confusion, so that I keep getting results. I loved JKoi’s post and went right out and bought an ab wheel. It’s hard work, but it’s getting easier to use, which means my abs are getting strong. Does anyone have a suggestion on great workout videos? I considered the Insanity DVDs, but I know I won’t put myself through that kind of physical rigor right now.

Here is a video that I made. It sort of goes with my email update.

September Update: Adrienne

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Here’s Adrienne (Second Wave) telling us how sometimes you have to take one step back to take two steps forward.  

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Hair:  Month two is over and I feel like I’m going backwards! About mid September I decided to get a Deva Cut. I know, why cut my hair during a GOC? Well I was having a seriously tough time detangling, the ends of my hair kept getting knots and I figured a cut was what I needed. I was right! After the cut detangling my hair was a lot easier so I’m not upset that I did it. I did my last trim in May and I’m thinking as I continue to refine my regimen I’ll have to trim a little every 4-6 months. So while it seems like my hair is not growing, I know it is and for me this GOC is not just about length, but hair health too. I’ve also been pretty lazy with my hair lately and wearing a lot of WnGs that I wear out for two days before pulling up into a puff. I just haven’t had the patience to twist, coil, or really style other than that. I’m thinking it might be time to do some mini twists soon so I cannot mess with my hair for a bit…but we’ll see.

 

Recently, I’ve started trying to make my own natural products. I guess I’m going CG now, since I’ve given up all conditioners with cones in them, and I stopped using sulfates months ago. I’ve recently made a whipped coconut oil concoction that I’ve been using to seal. I made Kimmaytube’s leave-in conditioner, but I’ve also been using a mixture of filtered water and Aloe Vera Juice as a spritz before sealing. I’ve also made some flaxseed gel and I’ve been using that for WnGs lately. My hair is feeling pretty good, so I’m going to try to keep it simple for now, despite my arsenal of hair products, and really focus on keeping my hair and body moisturized with water. I think my lack of drinking enough water led to me having the dry, tangled ends all the time. I’ve also introduced the Terressentials Mud Wash into my regimen and so far so good! So I’ve been using that as my alternative to shampoo.

Exercise: This is about the only thing I’ve been consistent with. While my hair regimen is sporadic and changes based on my mood, I’ve been making it to the gym every week. I lift weights Monday, Wednesday, and Friday and I focus on cardio Tuesday and Thursday. I do cardio MWF, but just not for very long. I’m also on a new work schedule where I work evenings so getting to the gym is a lot easier now, plus when I get home, I make sure to take the dog on a 45 minute walk. My weight hasn’t changed, but my energy is up and I feel pretty good, so that works for me. I just need to drink more water! Well … I also need to eat better. Since I’ve been working out, I figure I can eat what I want … but, I’m noticing with the new job, I’m eating a lot of candy, chips, and drinking too much soda. I’ve always had a serious problem with sweets. I love them so much but I really must stop! I’m telling myself I can’t even look at junk food unless I’ve had 2 Liters of water … I know, it’s not really going to help with the candy binge, but I’ll be drinking water at least!

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Step away from the candy Adrienne! Step away from the candy! LOL! Actually, the water may help you by providing a feeling of fullness so you won’t eat as much. So, that sounds like a plan. But, I also suggest getting snacks that you don’t crave as you’re more likely to be able to control portion size on things that don’t make you binge. I love sweet, baked items (cookies, cupcakes, cake, etc.), but don’t go for salty items like chips, simple sugar items like candy or ice cream. So, I keep those around for snack attacks as I know that I’m less likely to overeat them and they actually stay around for a while (I probably don’t have to remind you of my 6 cupcake binge a couple of weeks ago)!