Tag Archives: fine natural hair

Evolution of 6 Chunky Twists

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Good morning ladies! Hope that you are all well! It’s Thursday … 2 more days to go! Anywho, this is just a quick “This Week’s Hair” update post! If you remember, I mentioned in my Henna Weekend post on Monday that I planned to put my hair in 4-6 big twists after rinsing my conditioner in the morning. Well, I did and I left them in for work, only pulling them back into a low ponytail for the day.


On Tuesday morning, I released them for a twist-out and tried to do a side part. However, that right side was being barely wavy like it’s wont to be. So, I French braided the top back a little, then braided the rest of the hair. These pics are after work and before I worked-out. 


I didn’t like how flat my hair was, so I decided to fluff it.


I was LOVING it now! … But, had to stick it in a bun to work-out. So, I applied a litte Wild Growth Hair Oil Light to the length first and quickly put it up. I had plans to set it in a dry braid-out that night (really loving braid-outs now!) … but it never happened and I went to bed with the bun and bonnet. The next morning, the curls/waves had been stretched and flattened by the bun and my hair was looking wild (not big wild, but slept badly wild … *lol*). So, I remembered a pic I had just seen of Lea Michele from Glee a day or two previously …

And I decided to do a quick, messy side braid for work on Wednesday.


(Click pics to enlarge.)

I probably should have started the braid a little higher. But, oh well *shrugging shoulders* … it worked. Ended up bunning it again for Cardio Max and bed. Don’t know what today holds, but I’ll probably just redo the bun to neaten it up for work and keep it moving.

HAPPY THURSDAY!!

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Do your twist/braid-outs evolve? If so, how?

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Volume or Definition? That is the Question.

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I had an extended wash day as I pre-pooed on Sunday morning, shampooed, conditioner detangled and applied a DC on Monday morning and then finally rinsed the DC on Tuesday morning. I didn’t do this for extra conditioning … I did it because I was exhausted from my family reunion road trip and I went to see The Dark Knight Rises … a 2 hour and 44 minute bore … on Monday night.

Anywho, on Tuesday morning, after sealing and rinsing my DC, I put my hair in 5 twists with some diluted conditioner. I placed one twist on each side of my face, one at my crown and two in the back. Then I hit the road for the 2 hour drive to my Trenton office. When I was almost there, I applied some pomade to my ends and released slightly damp twists (I really need to do an updated regimen post … it’s coming soon).

Now, here is where the “age old” … like, you know, a few years “age old” 😉 … question for fine-haired curlies comes in. Because my hair was damp, it swelled once released to give me pretty big and soft hair, which I love.

But, the downside is that the frizz that gave me some nice volume also meant a loss of definition as my hair fully dried. This issue is especially prevalent in my crown, which is more porous than the rest of my hair.

See what I mean? So, I attempted something to try to get the best of both worlds. I re-twisted the top sections of my hair and the areas that framed my face to try to redefine the parts that I thought would be visible. But, I left the underlying hair untouched to retain the volume gained by the frizz.


Look at those roots! I used the Touch Back Marker in the front, but not the back ;).

I released the twists a little while later and …. ummm … yeah … it didn’t work!! It was soooo NOT cute. LOL! I had these defined piecey sections mixed with the frizzy and projecting under-sections! It was bootleg *smh*! And sorry, I didn’t take pics of the results! I saw that it failed, so I twisted the rest of my hair for the night to restore some definition for today. I should have taken the “after” picture though as I like to share failures as well as successes. I think it’s important to show that every experiment doesn’t work and every day isn’t a good hair day (you should have seen the four wet and saturated in conditioner twists that I secured with a jaw clip and went to work in on Monday!). Because, in the end, it’s all good and a learning opportunity. Maybe this didn’t work today, but I might do a better job of creating the “cover” twists or find a better technique the next time. Trial and error man.

Anywho, this made me think of a question for my fine-haired and/or low density curly friends:

Which are you willing to sacrifice: volume for definition OR definition for volume? Have you figured out how to have the best of both worlds?

Another Dream Deferred

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I’m a little bummed. You see, I thought that I was finally going to get a real haircut this weekend and I planned to surprise you all with the results today. But, to my disappointment, my appointment had to be cancelled unexpectedly.

So, instead, I’m here telling you about why I was soooo looking forward to this cut. First, it was with Tameeka of Jaded Tresses, who cut my hair like this in the summer of 2010:

See how loose my “curls” are here? This is the henna loosening
that has all but grown out, except for the last 6″ or so of my hair.

Back then, I told her that I liked big hair, that I wanted to keep as much of my length as possible and that I wanted a slight layer in the back and some long layers around my face. That’s exactly what I got. So, I trust that she will, 1. Listen to my concerns and honor my requests, 2. Give me as close to what I want as possible.

Second, this cut is long overdue. I had a small trim (about an inch on the longest areas and less that on the shorter lengths) a little while ago, but that really didn’t do enough. In fact, I think the way that it was cut may have caused even more unevenness than I already had. My last significant haircut was in February 2011. Since then, I’ve just been doing S&Ds to get rid of SSK and split ends. Between that, varying growth rates, different curl patterns and breakage in my crown, my perimeter has become an irregular mess! It’s usually not too noticeable, because I wear my hair in updos most days of the weeks or TnCs when it’s down. However, I really want to revisit WnGs as my weekend style this summer. I also want some layers to break up the curtain of hair around my face and to add some volume. I mean, have you seen what layers did for Curly Nikki and Antoinette of Around the Way Curls?

Alas … it was not meant to be … at least, not this weekend. Instead, I had to look at my scraggly ends and dream of the day when they would be a memory of the past. Since I can’t tell you about my wonderful new cut, let me give you a brief recap of wash day and share pics, so that you’ll understand my pain.

If you recall, I applied a pre-poo of Aubrey Organics Honeysuckle Rose Conditioner (AO HSR) and Vatika oil the Sunday before last and placed my hair in 4 twists. Yeah … I didn’t take them out or wash my hair until the following Saturday … morning … ish. I decided to try the Aubrey Green Tea Shampoo, which is lathering, but sulfate free, to clarify my hair in prep for the big day. I diluted it with water in a dye applicator bottle and applied it to my scalp where it created a very rich lather. I squished it down my twists and rinsed. Then, I whipped out the Aubrey Green Tea Cream Rinse and diluted that in water, as well, before applying. Unfortunately, I ran out and ended up grabbing a couple of other conditioners to finish the job of detangling (side note: My detangling session was a little rough as my roots were pretty matted … I wonder if they would have been as difficult to get through if I had used the diluted DevaCare No Poo?).

Once I finished detangling each section, I re-twisted and then rinsed with cold water under the tub faucet. Next, I hopped out of the shower and used a Curl Cloth to blot dry and then wrapped around my hair to sop up the drippies. When my hair was barely damp (15 minutes later), I applied AO HSR as my leave-in and placed my hair in twists that I sealed with my JBCO/EVOO mix. (My plan was to stretch my hair so that it would be easily detangled when it was wet again for my cut on Sunday.) Later that evening, I oiled my scalp with Wild Growth Hair Oil (WGHO) and applied a little WGHO Light to the length of my twists.

Again, I was very pleased with how much fuller my twists are appearing and how my hair feels strong, but soft. I also think my shedding was not bad given that my hair was twisted up all week.

Anyway, so I was really looking forward to Sunday … then, I got the e-mail that advised me that my appointment had to be cancelled because of an emergency. *sigh* Oh well. So, on Sunday around noon, I released my twists to find a very defined and shiny twist out … with sad, scraggly and crazy looking ends.

I really should have set them on rollers the night before, but was just too lazy to do so. Ughhhh … like seriously, as I’m writing this post and looking at this pic, I’m thinking, “What the heck?!? Maybe I should chop it all off!!” But, I know that the gappiness is partly attributable to the tighter curl pattern in my crown and the longer section under the crown. I also know that, with a little fluffing, it really isn’t as bad as it looks above.

But man, most of this excess length really needs to go and some layers around my face will deal with that henna loosened section on the left. I think that my “lead hair” is more than 2-3 inches longer than the bulk of my hair and it’s driving me crazy seeing it like this. I also think that my crown area needs to be trimmed neatly as all of the irregular lengths are resulting in more tangling. I read this post on BGLH.com recently, 7 Tips for Repairing Crown Area Thinning & Breakage, that indicated that it’s important to keep the crown area trimmed and as neat on the ends as possible.

via blackgirllonghair.com

If your hair is layered, you really want to make sure that the ends that are originating from your crown are kept neat. Uneven, splitting or otherwise frazzled hair easily tangles itself and can lead to a cycle of crazy breakage. Hairs should be able to move freely past other hairs without “catching.” This “catching” can lead to breakage in and around the crown area of the head.

I’ve had my share of crown area breakage issues! What I ended up doing was isolating my crown area and trimming it down to a blunt length. It was much shorter than the rest of my hair, but the trim allowed me to focus on the area—to treat it separately and to comb it separately until it improved.

So, all that being said, I’m really hoping to get this appointment re-scheduled soon so that I can debut a fabulous rear view to you guys in the near future!! Although I like the volume the extra length gives my buns and updos and I feel that the hair is pretty healthy, I know that I’ll be happier with a fuller and more even perimeter. I also know that it’ll grow back by the end of the year and I think that it’ll be thicker, fuller, curlier and even healthier because of the tweaks I’ve made to my regimen.

With that, here are a few pics where I twisted my ends together to help blend them better. It’s a technique I use to stretch the curlier areas and curl the straighter ones to create a similar wave. Sometimes it works … sometimes it doesn’t. But, I liked these pics because you can see the great definition and shine that I got from the twists with only AO HSR as a leave-in. I definitely think all of the AO products have had a hand in giving my twist and braid outs better definition and have also resulted in my hair drying far more quickly!! Again, Aubrey Organics is a keeper!!

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Would/have you sacrifice(d) healthy length for a better cut/shape?

Prissy’s HairStory

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by Prissy of Black Hair in Paris

I am a new naturalista. But I never planned to be. I didn’t go for the big chop. I didn’t have a hair tragedy or develop an allergy to chemicals. I didn’t watch Chris Rock’s “Good Hair.” I came into the look I’ve always wanted simply by accident. Serendipity is my friend.

I got my first relaxer at 13. I tagged along with my aunt to the salon. While sitting there amazed at her glossy results, she asked me if I wanted one. I said yes, all gooey-eyed, and that experience led to me using chemicals for the next two decades. Before my relaxer, I got my hair “pressed” as folks back home call it. Every Saturday night we’d go to my grandparent’s and sit in the middle of the kitchen. I still remember my grandmother saying, “Grab your ear girl” and me cringing, hoping she wouldn’t slip and burn my finger. When she’d finished and all the smoke had gone, there we sat with our long hair reaching our shoulders. Happy. Proud. Ready for ribbons and church on Sunday.

Those were the days.

After I initially got my relaxer, I kept it simple until I reached 18. I was away at college and modeling part time. For one of the fashion shows, the organizers sent me to a hair stylist. She turned out to be a weave specialist and said, “Why don’t you try it, at least for the show?” I went from having a bob to being a diva overnight. That led to what I call my “Diana Ross Years.”

Afterwards, I wore long hair extensions (braided in, glued in, sewed in) off and on for several years. If I cut my hair and missed it, I’d go and get it weaved in again. If I simply got bored with my already long hair, I’d go and get even longer hair. Curly weaves were my kryptonite.

In 2006, I decided that length no longer mattered to me. I didn’t need super long hair. Not even long hair. I went for a super short bob and it was one of the best looks I’ve ever rocked. But then, I let my hair grow out and I was bored again. I returned to my old habits and went and got another weave. Sigh. The vicious cycle was hard to break. I finally got rid of it once and for all in 2009.

I was then expecting a bundle of joy. I didn’t want to go to the salon. I went for a long time without doing anything to my hair other than a simple shampoo and a pull back. After the baby came, I knew it was time to get my head taken care of. Nicole Pembrook of Polished Hair Care told me on my first trip back to the salon, “You know what? You don’t need a relaxer. I’m not putting one in. In fact you never needed one.”

WHAT?

I didn’t believe it. I’d had a relaxer since … forever. In the back of my mind I thought, “I’ll just try it out. She’ll see.” That day, I walked away with a shampoo and blow out. No one could tell that I didn’t have a relaxer. I would wear my hair blown out and flat-ironed for the next two years.

In December 2011, I was travelling home to America for Christmas. I had a weave specialist’s number. He was inexpensive and good. I didn’t want to go back to relaxers or weaves, but I wanted to change the texture. I wanted curly hair again. It turns out he wasn’t available (thank God!) so I decided to wash it myself. However, when I looked in the mirror afterwards, I didn’t recognize my own head: I had a head full of naturally curly hair.

It’s been two months since I had a blow out. My family, my friends, and most of all, ME love my new hair! The icing on the cake was when my daughter, who has curly hair too, looked at me, patted my hair and said, “Mom pretty hair.”

What more could a girl ask for? Absolutely nothing.

AVJ to Seal Revisited

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Last week, my aloe vera juice (AVJ) to seal experiment didn’t go so well. I suspected that this was due to my concurrent plopping experiment (see here if you missed it). So, this past Saturday, I decided to try it again. Here is how wash days (yes days, that’s not a typo) went.

  • On Thursday night, I pre-pooed and finger detangled with Vatika oil, placing my hair in 6 twists. I donned a baggie and hit the sack.
  • Friday morning, I placed the twists in a low bun and slicked the edges with some Sofn’Free Mold & Hold Wax for work.
  • Friday night, I untwisted each section, applied Aubrey Organics Honeysuckle Rose conditioner directly over the Vatika oil and retwisted. Again, I donned a baggie and hit the sack.
  • Saturday morning, I hit the shower and washed with the last of the Terressentials Mud Wash (TMW) Left Coast Lemon. I untwisted each section, one by one, to wash and then re-twisted.
  • I got out of the shower and finger combed, then used a wide tooth comb, to detangle each section.
  • Finally, after I combed each section, I raked Kinky Curly Knot Today (KCKT) through it, then AVJ.

My hair took about 4-5 hours to fully dry, but it was huge once done!

Now, a few observations and additional notes.

  1. I am really digging this dry hair deep conditioning before washing as it means I don’t have to get back in the shower or use the sink to wash the DC!!
  2. My hair was very tacky when I used the TMW this time. It was tacky during the wash and the post wash detangling session, which is why I resorted to the wide tooth comb after finger detangling. Last week I used the DevaCare No Poo and my hair detangled like a breeze. Not sure if it was the products I used this past week, but I did NOT like the feel of my hair. I will say that I didn’t use any conditioner after washing and I also didn’t do a cool water rinse. So, the omission of those steps may have impacted my results. Next week, I’ll try this again with the TMW Lavender Garden and a cool final rinse to see if I have the same problem. I’m trying to eliminate the rinse-out conditioner step to see if I can use the TMW alone.
  3. I should have re-wet each section of my hair prior to applying the leave-in and AVJ as my hair was only barely damp by the time I got to the right side. Fran indicated her hair has to be very wet to get the best results.
  4. Once my hair was fully dry, I used a little JBCO to smooth and seal as I felt my hair looked too dry without a little oil.
  5. Before bed, I oiled my scalp with Wild Growth Hair Oil (white bottle) and applied a tiny amount of the Wild Growth Light (yellow bottle) to the length. Then, I placed my hair in 8 twists and put on my satin bonnet for bed.
  6. On Sunday, I used some Eco Styler Olive Oil gel, a satin scrunchie and a few bobby pins to place my hair into a big, low bun. I’ll probably wear it in a bun the rest of the week, unless I have time to put it in twists.

In other news, last week was a complete fail in regard to my exercise and diet regimen. It was a very sad week due to an unexpected and deeply impactful loss. I had time to work-out, but I just didn’t do it out of stress and emotional exhaustion. I really need to stop allowing those things to take me off the course though, as exercise often helps one cope with stress and it’s just another excuse. Well, today is another day to get it right.

Finally, I saw Avengers this weekend … TWICE!!! OMGosh, no spoilers, but it did NOT disappoint! If you are a comics/cartoon/superhero fan, I think that you’ll probably enjoy it. I can be the harshest of critics with these type of movies, but I was very pleased. Guess that’s no surprise since I already said that I saw it twice … and on the same day. I think it falls somewhere between X1 (about which I was mostly ambivalent) and X2 (which I LOVED). That’s all I’ll say as I don’t want to give anything away for those who haven’t seen it yet. But, if you haven’t seen it yet … what are you waiting for??? Oh, wait, I do have one more thing to say … stay until the end of the credits. That is all.

Dang, I forgot to show my Avengers ID! I might have gotten in for free!!

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What have you tried, tried and tried again in order to get it right? And, did you see Avengers yet? 

GOC Contender #48: Me!

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Y’all knew this was coming, right ;)?

Name: Shelli aka Hairscapades aka SkillsGill

Goals:

Hair
After I cut off 2 straggly inches in the back on my hair and an inch in the front (see here), I got a professional trim this past Friday. I got about an inch cut off of my longest lengths in the back and 1/2 an inch off of my shorter crown. The plan is to keep trimming the longest length every couple of months in order to keep it at the same length and in the hopes that the crown will catch up with it so I can get that full thickness waist length perimeter that I’ve been jockeying for since the CurlyNikki/Kim Coles GOC last year ;). I also want to focus on protecting and growing my ultra fine (strand thickness and density) nape hair.


Full length (L); Shorter crown (R)


Please excuse my oily, pre-pooed hair ;).

Health & Fitness
I can’t believe that I allowed myself to get back here :(. I’m up 15 lbs, to 135 guys (can you see me sucking in my gut in those side poses? *lol* ;)). Yeah, I know … absolutely ridiculous. So, my goal is to lose 10-15 lbs by the time I go on vacation to Cancun this summer so I’m back at my fighting weight of 120-125 lbs. I have a couple of months to get ‘er done.

This is the thing, I really need to find the work/home/exercise/blog balance. Over the last couple of months, my house has been an absolute mess. Paperwork piled on the buffet and kitchen table, dirty clothes falling out the hamper, clean and unfolded clothes piling out of the laundry basket, worn and discarded clothes covering every free surface except the bed, small birthday items lining the top of the couch, jewelry everywhere but the 3 jewelry cases in which it belongs … I could go on and on. It was bad.

When that happens, I get stressed and become immobilized by inertia. I’ve failed to exercise, eat well, drink enough water and have not even taken my vitamins and supplements in months. I’ve allowed the blog to dominate the majority of my free time and keep me up until midnight or later most nights, resulting in my complete exhaustion almost every day of the week. Now, y’all know I love you guys! But, this has got to stop. So, in order to ensure that I am exercising most days of the week and maintaining an orderly and clean household, my blog posts will become less frequent. I still plan on posting at least once each week day … maybe even twice on a good day. But, the 3-4 posts a day is not gonna happen (except today! LOL!). I need to slow down for the sake of my own health and well-being!! LOL!!

This is why there were no posts on Sunday or Monday. Wei and I spent almost 9 hours cleaning the house and there is still all of the laundry to do! It was major spring cleaning though and my mind heaved a sigh of relief!! I needed this to get myself mentally and physically prepared to get back on my A-game!! Yesterday was Day 1 … again!! LOL!!

Regimen:

Hair

Weekly:

  • Pre-poo and finger detangle dry hair with Vatika oil  (minimum of 30 min.).
  • Conduct Search and Destroys (S&Ds) to eliminate split ends and SSKs
  • Braid or twist pre-pooed and detangled hair in 4-8 sections.
  • Shampoo hair in braids with DevaCare No Poo.
  • Condition and finger detangle further with Herbal Essences Hello Hydration (HE HH).
  • Deep condition with heat (bonnet or winter hat) with JessiCurl Weekly DC, Darcy’s Botanical Pumpkin Seed Moisturizing Condition or Shea Moisture Raw Shea Deep Treatment Masque (minimum 1 hr)
  • Use “Cool and Seal” DC technique.
  • Blot with Curls Like Us Curl Cloth and allow hair to dry until only slightly damp.
  • Apply leave-in (modified Kimmaytube recipe).
  • WnG or TnC to stretch hair (products vary).
  • Air dry and/or bonnet dryer
  • Wear hair out for 1-2 days.
  • Protective/low manipulation style for remainder of week (buns, updos, twists, etc.)
  • Use a mild protein treatment (ApHogee 2 Minute Keratin Reconstructor), as needed (probably every other wash days).

Every 4-8 weeks:

  • Two step henna/indigo (roots only application).
  • Clarify with Terressentials Mud Wash (TMW), bentonite clay mask (working on a homemade TMW recipe!) or a diluted sulfate shampoo.
  • Do a heavy duty protein treatment (ApHogee 2 Step Protein Treatment). This is dependent on the acquisition of a hard bonnet dryer (I may hit Sally’s this week to pick up one I saw on sale for $99).
Daily (?):
  • Massage scalp with EO mix, sunflower oil (to decrease shedding – more on this soon) and/or Wild Growth Oil (I purchased the light this past weekend, but may exchange it for the original formula).

Health & Fitness
I will start the mornings right by eating breakfast and doing Abs of Steel. I will put on my gear immediately upon arriving home from work and exercise. I will not write any posts until after I work-out.

Exercise (next 6 weeks):

After completing my work-out each day, I will post on the wall of our 28 Day Workout Challenge Facebook Group. (If you need some help getting motivated, maybe my post, Motivation, will help. I sure needed a refresher!!)

Supplements (daily after dinner):

  • 1 Pre-Natal Multi-Vitamin (Vitafol-One [Rx] until it runs out, then an OTC pre-natal)
  • 1 Biotin – 2000 5000 mg (Nature’s Bounty – Super Potency)
  • 2 MSM – 2000 mg (Vitamin Shoppe)
  • 1 rounded scoop of Green Vibrance in almond milk or in a green smoothie.

Diet (daily):

  • Breakfast (btwn 6-8 am) – 1/2 c. oatmeal or cooked Grapenuts with 1/2 cup blueberries (Dole frozen/thawed) OR the aforementioned green smoothie; 1 cup of instant coffee w/2 packs of Truvia, 1 tsp agave, a little powdered skim milk or almond milk.
  • Snack (approx. 10 am) – 2% or 0% fat Greek yogurt (fruit variety – Fage or Oikos)
  • Lunch (approx 12:30-1) – Lean Cuisine (chicken/turkey/fish with rice or potatoes) w/added vegetables (spinach, broccoli or sugar snap snow peas) and a piece of fruit (apple, orange, banana, etc.).
  • Snack (approx. 5 pm) – Organic baby food (Ella’s Kitchen or HappyBaby/Tot).
  • Dinner (approx 8 pm) – Lean Cuisine (chicken, turkey or fish w/rice, potatoes, whole wheat or orzo pasta) w/added vegetables (spinach, broccoli or sugar snap snow peas); fruit on occasions.
  • 60 oz or more of water (three 20 oz bottles in a metal thermos)
  • May also incorporate Whey Protein Isolate (WPI) Shake (Nectar Strawberry Mousse) as a post-workout recovery drink.
  • In bed by 11 pm Sun-Thursday (this is crucial)!!!

Need to get back to this!!

Rewards: Finding THE BALANCE!! Oh, and to feel confident rocking the bikinis I purchased last year (and have yet to wear) on my vacation in Cancun!! Improved health and well being!! There’s nothing like feeling strong and energized!

Follow me online: Well … you know. LOL!!

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And that’s it!! If you didn’t get your entry in time to be part of the “official” line-up, don’t fret!  You can still “Play at Home” by creating your own GOC journal or blog, establishing your goals, regimen and documenting your progress!! So …

L E T ‘ S   G E T   G R O W I N G ! ! !