A little over month or so ago, I shared a DIY Goat Milk Conditioning Hair Mask Recipe. As I mentioned then, and I’ll reaffirm now, I LOVE this stuff!! My hair has been amazing since I started using it and I’m about to apply a batch that I mixed up this past Sunday as soon as I post this!!
Anywho, I know that some people are more visual and want to SEE things demonstrated. But, this is the thing. I struggle with videos and they take me hour upon hour to tape, edit, and figure out how to upload properly. So, I haven’t done any “real” ones in FOREVER!! But, I was very pleased to see that Sawah of DiscoveringNatural tried my goat milk recipe and filmed it!! So, I’m sharing her video for those interested in seeing the recipe “in action.” And, I love that she has a different texture than me and can demonstrate its effectiveness on tighter coils!! Thanks Sawah!!
(p.s. I have since added an eye dropper full each of Nettle Leaf and Marshmallow Root extracts to my recipe. I got them for something else that I never made, because both herbs are touted to have benefits for hair. Can’t say for certain that they improved the efficacy of the conditioner. But again, my hair has been behaving WONDERFULLY since I started using this and my shedding/hair loss has been dramatically decreased.)
First, my fine strands don’t do well with daily manipulation and nightly re-braiding/re-twisting routines. So, I need a nighttime routine that involves minimal hair handling. But, the “pineapple,” high unicorn horn ponytail just never worked well for me. I mean, I gave it the ol’ college try! Really I did. Over and over again. But, my curls just don’t defy gravity *sad face* (don’t you love that song though?). So, they would just flop all up in my face, or fall back down onto my neck (no matter that I started the night with them daintily draped over my satin pillowcase). Inevitably, I’d end up sleeping on and crushing at least half of my curls. Not only that, when it was time to take the pineapple down in the morning, my less curly nape hair “tail” would be even longer (ughhh!!! Yes! The dreaded curly mullet) and my hair would be frizzy. So, finally, I gave up on the pineapple and just started bunning my hair instead. I still had to deal with flattened curls and ends, but not so much frizz, no excessive tail, and no face-flop for sleepy time.
Then, a couple of months ago, I accidentally discovered an alternative to the pineapple that really works for me! I just wanted to get to bed as quickly as possible and threw my hair up with a barrette. Well, the “technique” ended up keeping my hair up and off of my face and neck, prevented excess frizz, and preserved my curly ends! I was also able to swap out my satin scarf for a sweatband and get my morning workout on with minimal damage too!! Eureka!!
Anywho … that’s enough lead up … so, wanna hear it? Here it go!!!
Gather hair into a low ponytail.
Twist the ponytail up head one to two times like I am doing a French twist, leaving the curly ends free.
Secure the twist against my crown with a Goody Comfort Flex barrette and with the curly ends loose at the top of my head.
Wrap a long, oblong satin scarf around the back of head towards the front and back around again, tying a knot at the nape.
Leave the curly ends peaking out at the top or pull the scarf up and tuck in the curly ends to cover them (in the pic, my ends are covered; in the video, they are out).
“Anchor” the scarf with two to three large “doobie” pins to prevent slippage while sleeping.
And for those of you who are visual learners …
And that’s it. Super simple. Super easy. Super quick! That’s a winner in my book!
Yup. I’m at it again. Still trying how to figure out how to two-strand flat twist correctly, and still not getting it quite right. But, even with my less than stellar installation, the results were pretty good!! I know that I didn’t do them right because I didn’t have two clean sections when I removed them. But … good enough.
Anywho, the weekend before last, I was going for a wedding day hair trial with Jaded Tresses. So, I blew out my hair and she lightly flat-ironed it. A couple of days later, I decided to try another NaturalNeiicey (aka PGneiicey) twist out tutorial I’d watched weeks earlier. I was just hoping that my hair would look HALF as gorgeous as hers.
I had blown my hair out over the weekend and used a leave-in, heat protectant, and smoothing cream for that purpose. So, when I set it in the twists, I didn’t want to add any additional products to the length of my hair. Instead, I just spritzed the twists lightly with water after they were done. Then, I did use a little Deva Curl Set It Free (my unsung hero) on my ends before setting them on rollers. And, on day 2, I used my good ol’ Soft n’ Free Mold & Hold Wax for edge control.
(Click pics to see captions.)
Blow-out in progress.
Quick length check.
3 Day old hair.
My two-strand flat twists (I set the ends on grey perm rods).
I was really feeling my outfit. LOL!!
End of day 2 (better than day 1!)
Okay, gotta go get in Day 258 of 365 Days of Fitness (it’ll be a short one because it’s late now). Oh, and I completed Day 58 of 365 Days of the Word earlier this morning. Update on both challenges coming soon!!
Okay y’all. I didn’t expect to be doing a hair post this week. But, I got such awesome braid-out results from my wash day this weekend, I just had to share!!! This may be my new regimen if it consistently delivers the super soft, light, defined, and shiny results that I got this time!!
But first, let’s talk about the state of my hair going into this. Dry. Crunchy. Undefined. Bushy (the bad kind, not the good kind). So, I knew I needed to do some rehab first. Therefore, I pre-pooed with an old fave combo that I seemed to have forgotten to use for a while (O_o) … Vatika Oil and Aubrey conditioner!! This time, I used Aubrey Honeysuckle Rose (HSR) conditioner as I was in need of some serious moisture versus the protein shot that Aubrey GPB would deliver. I usually mix the oil and conditioner together prior to applying. But, the HSR was an afterthought, so I ended up layering it over the Vatika Oil (I lightly finger detangled and then twisted my hair into 4 sections) and then applied my JBCO/EVOO/EO mix to my scalp.
Looked and felt better IMMEDIATELY.
I donned a plastic cap and my thermal heat turban for about an hour. Then, I left the plastic cap on and did some chores before hitting the shower about 3 hours or so later, I guess.
This is the thing, waaaay back in the day, I used this gel for WnGs with ho-hum results. It didn’t provide much hold or definition as far as I can recall. But, I have a huge bottle of it under my sink, because I usually mix it with my face lotion in the summer to reduce the oil slick down the middle of my face. So, I decided to break it out and give VeggieCurlDeelite’s (VCD) braid-out a go with some of my old … and new … faves!!
Sectioned hair into four and worked section by section.
Applied about a marble-sized amount of Kinky Curly Knot Today Leave-in Conditioner, smoothing and finger combing it through the length of hair.
Smoothed and finger-combed a marble-sized amount (or maybe even a little more) Fruit of the Earth Aloe Vera Gel down the section, ensuring hair coated (the gel seemed to add slip and aid detangling too!).
Placed front two sections of hair in 2 braids on each side and back section in 3 braids on each side for a total of 10 braids.
Lightly applied a little virgin coconut oil (VCO) to ends (last 3-4 inches) and rolled on small grey perm rods covered in end paper (I set my ends not only to curl them, but to keep them smooth, discourage knots, and to “lock in” the moisture).
I tied my head down with a hair net to allow air flow, then hit the sack on an EboniCurls satin pillowcase. But, with only 5 hours and an a.m. workout, my hair did not dry in time for work on Monday morning. So, I just removed the rollers, pulled the braids into a low ponytail, and threw on a headband to get out the door. I didn’t release my hair from the braids until Tuesday morning. But it was worth the wait!!
Y’all … VCD was NOT kidding!!!! My hair was sooooo soft and silky!! I was suffering from some serious Hands-in-Hair (HIH) Syndrome!! I told at least three friends touch it, so that they could marvel over how soft it was ;)!! LOL!!! So yeah, this AVG combo looks like a keeper (I think that the DC might have had something to do with it too). Now, how it’ll hold up overnight and after daily, sweaty a.m. workouts? That remains to be seen. But, you know, I’m not expecting miracles. I may be in bun by the end of day 2. But, as long as it is still soft and moisturized, that’s okay with me!!
A couple of weeks ago, I was fudging around on YouTube and came across this two part series on using coconut milk as a hair treatment. I was immediately intrigued for two reasons. First, I love me some coconut oil! DON’T NOBODY better say nothin’ bad about COCONUT OIL. ‘Cuz that’s when Bonita goes OFF!! *teehee* Second, the YouTuber’s hair is RIDIC!! I mean, long as all get out and so healthy looking without a broken strand visible to the naked eye (whereas I have a ton from a rough, dry winter :()!! Now, I know her hair is not curly, kinky, or coily. However, I have always believed that we can learn things from a variety of sources and different textures/ethnicities as so many of the practices that promote healthy hair are the same, regardless of race/texture/hair type (i.e. moisture, protein, protection). And, given the benefits of coconut oil (did you see this recent article on CurlyNikki about the amazing penetrating capabilities of coconut oil?!?!?) and how great it works for me, I figured coconut milk (which has coconut oil in it) might be just as awesome.
Now, though I love the IDEA of using fresh coconut milk, #aintnobodygottimeforthat. *LOL* So, I broke out a can of coconut milk that I had in the cabinet. I had picked up a couple of cans a long time ago for a post-wash avocado/coconut milk/honey DC that didn’t work out too well (made my hair hard). But, I was ready to give this new use of it a go! However, first, I decided to research a little more to see if I could find naturals who had used coconut milk with success. And, I just so happened to come across these posts by my virtual curlfriend, Petra/Emily CottonTop: Coconut Milk Deep Condition and Results – Coconut Milk Pre-Poo. In these posts, Petra shares a pre-poo recipe:
Coconut Milk – 4 tablespoons
Honey -2 tablespoon
3 of Your Favorite oils – 1 tablespoon each
… and her awesome results. I was sold!
So, I whipped up a batch of coconut-milk with Vatika Oil and EVOO, using only two tablespoons of oil instead of three. I heated the mix and applied to my dry dirty hair. Then I donned a plastic cap and my thermal heat turban for about an hour. I will say that the application process was messy and a bit sticky. But, my wash process went very smoothly and my hair felt stronger, moisturized and my twists were so plump, juicy and shiny!
Coconut milk from the can.
Work hair for Mon-Thursday.
Day 5 hair: twist-out.
So, this past weekend, I made a coconut milk pre-poo again with the leftovers from the prior week. This time, I added some Aubrey Honeysuckle Rose conditioner (I was hoping that it would thicken the mix, but it didn’t really) and applied and massaged plain, warmed coconut milk into my scalp too. Though the application process was still a little messy (I think I’ll use a small dye applicator bottle in the future), I had great results again. So, I’m really thinking this will become a staple in my regimen!! I will keep an eye on my hair to make certain that the coconut milk doesn’t begin to make it feel hard or brittle (due to the protein content). If it does, I will reduce the frequency of the treatment.
Finally, I don’t use much coconut milk for the treatment and it only keeps in the fridge for about two weeks it seems. So, I was worried about spoilage and wasting it. Fortunately for me, I discovered that it can be frozen into ice cubes to form convenient “serving sizes” for future use!!!
So yeah, all engines are a go!! Coconut milk pre-poo treatments are my new boo!! Time will tell if it results in strands as long, seemingly perfectly uniform in length, and unbroken as that YouTuber!! One can only hope ;)!!
Over the course of the last month or so, I’ve been seeing videos of ladies using wrapping techniques to achieve heat-free, “blown-out,” natural hair. Then, a couple of weeks ago, I came across this video by Naptural85 using wrapping to maintain smooth, stretched curls overnight!
Hmmmmm … interesting!! Wrapped curly hair!! Who woulda thunk?! *lol* Anywho, I had been loving the results from re-twisting/braiding my hair at night (I was getting great multi-day hair), but my strands were NOT loving the daily manipulation. So, I decided to try the wrapping technique to achieve good day two hair from the dry twist-out I’d done with Cantu leave-in and Eco Styler gel (here).
And the results:
Not bad!! By the end of the first day, my hair had frizzed and poofed just like Naptural85’s. The wrapping technique worked to smooth and calm the frizz, just like it did for her. But, the thing is, it really did stretch my hair more than I would want on day two. So, I didn’t do it again after that first night. I find that loosely bunning my hair overnight helps tame the frizz and preserve the curls, with some stretching, but not as much as seen with wrapping. Therefore, I don’t think that this will become a “go to” overnight maintenance technique for me. But, I’ll keep it in my back pocket for days where I want to achieve stretched and controlled curls! And for those seeking ways to stretch their curly styles, this may be just the ticket!!
Okay, so this past weekend, I see the above picture on Instagram … and commenced to drooling. So big, long and lush!!!! So, imagine my jaw drop when I learned this was a weave! You read right!! A weave!! So yeah, I’m just doing this quick post to share these amazing natural weaves by HeatFreeHair.com. The “curly” hair is out of stock right now, but I signed up for the mailing list … ‘cuz, I’m gonna need to investigate!! Because, I’d love to try a texture that was different from my own, just like the one above!! I LOVE it!!
Anywho, here’s a little promo video I found online.
Right from the beginning, I knew I was gonna write about it. Excuse me? What did you ask? Why am I so enthralled by this particular video? Well, because there are a bunch of things about the video that I can relate to and appreciate. Like what, you ask? Oh … I’ll be honored to let you know. SO … in no particular order …
THE TOP 5 REASONS WHY I LOVE THESE VIDEOS
I relate to knowing a few natural hair terms and feeling pride when I get a chance to use them … even when I am wrong when trying to slide them into a conversation!
When Shelli finally noticed me, there was someone else trying to impress her. I had to sit there and watch. It wasn’t too bad though. I just paid attention to her fine ass!
I believe in the idea of wanting to do your Significant Other’s hair as an act of love and not as an act of beautification. BUT … I also understand why it doesn’t happen!
I believe in creativity … and the HARP METHOD and in the SPRAY & PRAY! The HARP METHOD is like a multi-tasking, multi-finger detangling method. And the SPRAY & PRAY is … well … it is what it sounds like. Spray something and pray that it works! I make a motion that we immediately include them both in the natural hair care lexicon!
The main reason I love this video is because it was made to share love and laughter! And I support the sharing of love and laughter. (See her face at the 2:40 mark in part 1!)
And in conclusion … My suggestion for the week ahead is calculate how much time you spend on hair porn and make sure that you spend AT LEAST that amount of QUALITY TIME with your Significant Other. You can even offer to wash your S.O.’s hair or massage their scalp! (Be careful … the scalp massage is a SERIOUS MATTER! I’ll tell you about that at another time!)
Have a great week!
p.s. … NO .. I am not doing Shelli’s hair … I like her smile … Messing with her hair would create a non-smile reaction … possibly tears … so … NAH!!!
I often get asked about whether there are any natural hair softeners/curl looseners options for natural hair and if henna is a good choice. Although henna may loosen some curls, it can be hit or miss and seems largely dependent on the thickness of the hair strand and the existing curl formation. Henna tends to loosen the curls of those who don’t want loosening! It’s also a time-consuming process and essentially permanent, so it’s not for the faint of heart! *lol* Finally, if not done right, henna can cause damage and so I always suggest that anyone interested in trying it do their research before making the leap (I read everything I could on henna for 2 months before finally deciding to try it).
That being said, when I was in the NC.com Curly Nikki Presents Kim Coles’ Grow Out Challenge (whew … that never gets easier to write!), I read a rave review about a natural hair softener/curl loosener. The young lady called it a caramel treatment. This treatment was generally made with molasses (which gives it the caramel color and consistency – hence the “caramel” moniker), honey, banana baby food and oils, but there are variations on the recipe that can be found online.
As I wasn’t interested in hair softening or curl loosening (shoot! I was over-conditioned at the time and ever in search something to make my curls tighter!), I never tried it. But, I did “lock it in the vaults” as I knew it was good information and might be helpful to someone. And, since I recently got asked about natural curl softeners/looseners, I figured the time to open the vaults was now :).
That being said, here is a video demonstrating how to make a caramel treatment that might be helpful to those of you interested in trying it!
Now, it wouldn’t be right of me to share this and not tell you about an article that I found by WestNDNBeauty on Confessions of a Blog Vixen that said that it was a waste of perfectly good banana baby food!! So, guess it doesn’t work for everyone. But, given that the ingredients are pretty easy to find and inexpensive, I figured that some might want to give it a try to come to their own conclusion!!
Check out this great video tutorial that Sawah shared on my Facebook page!! Love it!! Reminds me of my My Cinnabun, but this is a great way to modify the style to make it work for shorter hair!! Love the extra little bits of “flare” that she added to finish off the style!!
Working with short hair can be a challenge at times. Here is a simple style that you can try to create a look of fullness to your hair. This style is not only great for work, but also for special occasion. The great thing is that it is a great protective style that takes less than 5 minutes to create.
If you are transitioning, this is also a GREAT style to hide the relaxed ends.