Friday, 12 December 2014

Review: ORS Olive Oil Smooth-N-Hold Pudding


Promises
Olive Oil Smooth-N-Hold Pudding™moisturizes, shines, and holds the hair. This lightweight, non-sticky pudding leaves a smooth and shiny hold whilst moisturizing the hair. Olive Oil Smooth-N-Hold Pudding™is a unique formula that won't dry the hair or cause flaking.  

Directions
  1. Massage into palm of hands. Apply to the hair and brush for even distribution. Style hair as usual. Ideal for smoothing ponytails.

Ingredients
Aqua (Water) , Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil , Paraffinum Liquidum (Mineral Oil),  Glycerin, Cetearyl alcohol, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Polyquaternium-11, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Oil, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Phenyl Trimethicone, PEG-12 DimethiconeSodium Cetearyl Sulfate,  Polysorbate-60, PEG-150 StearateCetyl Alcohol, Ceteareth-20 ,PEG-20 Hydrogenated Lanolin, Peg-40 Stearate, Oleth-20, Carbomer, Aminomethyl Propanol, DMDM Hydantoin, Methylchloroisothiazolinone , methylisothiazolinone, parfum, Alpha-Isomethyl, Ionone, Benzyl Benzoate, Butylphenyl Methylpropional, Citronellol, Eugenol, Geraniol, Hexyl cinnamal, Limonene, Linalool, Cl 42090, Cl 19140

Verdict
I would definitely recommend this product. It is great for twist outs and braid outs. Unlike a lot of other styling products it doesn't cause the hair to completely shrink, leaving you with a reasonably stretched style. It gives a medium hold, keeping reasonable definition for 2-3 days without resetting the style. After application, I did not need to moisturise my hair for 3 days, as opposed to every day/ every other day. The pudding also gives amazing shine. That being said it does have its drawbacks, it is quite greasy. If you rested your head against a window, chances are your hair would leave a mark. It also builds up quite easily on the hair, getting to the stage where your hair needs washing. However, this can be easily worked around. My suggestion would be to use the product to set twists as a protective style, take them out wear a twist out for a few days; or you could do a twist out on dry hair and then wash soon after. For those of you that are conscious about ingredients, mineral oil is present... Admittedly this made me hesitant to purchase the pudding for a few months but I wasn't put off nor do I have any regrets.  I paid £2.69 for 16.2 oz. from my local hair and beauty shop, which is a great price. Would I buy again, Definitely!



Sunday, 30 November 2014

My Rhassoul Clay Experience

I have had my eye on both Rhassoul and Bentonite clay since my transitioning days. Last week was my second experience using Rhassoul clay, I first used the Anita Grant Conditioning cubes in June, this time around I made my own clay mix. I can definitely say that it is now a staple in my regimen.


Benefits (taken from anitagrant.com)
1. Softens skin and hair.
2. Regulates sebum secretion without drying. 
3. Regenerates skin cell tissue by gently removing dead cells and improving skin clarity and elasticity. 
4. Rebalances the skin and tightens the pores.
5. Provides optimal repair and renewal to both skin and hair by nourishing the skin and scalp tissue cells with pro-vitamins and trace minerals such as silicon, iron, magnesium, potassium and sodium.
6. Reduces dryness and flakiness. 
7. Cleanses curly hair without stripping the natural oils (sebum). 
8. Detangles, defines and detoxifies naturally curly hair.  
9. Non-irritating to skin and scalp, suitable for all skin and hair types. 


  
My Recipe
50g Rhassoul Clay (micronised) 
40ml Apple Cider Vinegar
15ml Rose Water
15ml Hot water
5ml Coconut Oil
5ml tablespoons Aloe Vera Gel
2 drops Peppermint Oil


Directions
1. Mix ingredients together excluding the oil and gel until the mixture is smooth. (use plastic or wooden spoon/fork)
2. Add oils and gel once smooth consistency is achieved
3. Apply in sections to damp hair from root to end
4. Cover hair with shower cap/plastic bag for up to an hour
5.Rinse thoroughly until the water runs clear and there are no traces left in your hair
6.ACV rinse- optional (I didn't apply the clay to my scalp so the rinse was to cleanse my scalp)


Verdict
I love love love Rhassoul clay. I can't believe that it has taken me so long to use it. I used the clay mix as both a cleanser and a conditioner, a 2 in 1. My hair was definitely cleansed and softer than it has ever been after using store bought conditioner. Curlfriends, I have found myself a new staple. The clay kept my wash day tangle free, I didn't have to wash my hair in twists. I tend to have somewhat frizzy hair and the clay definitely reduced the frizz encouraging my hair to clump. One thing I would say is that the clay didn't leave my hair as shiny as I'm used to after deep conditioning but this is not an issue, I may just switch up my recipe to help this. A word of advice, rinse out thoroughly, especially if you have thick hair, you don't want to dry your hair only to find out you still have clay residue in it. You can also use the clay on your face, which I plan to do next.. altering the recipe of course, I don't want the peppermint oil to make me blind. I plan to use Rhassoul Clay to cleanse and condition my hair once a month which is every other washday because I wash my hair biweekly. Price wise, Rhassoul clay is on the more expensive side especially if you live in England. I purchased 250g of Rhassoul clay from Anita Grant for £5.80 during a 20% off promotion, normal price £7.25, she also sells 500g for £13.55. 

Have you used Rhassoul clay? Share your favourite recipes in the comments :)


ps. Sorry about my hiatus, I accidentally spilt smoothie on my macbook, had to get it fixed :(. 

Thursday, 16 October 2014

10 Ways to Use Coconut Oil

Coconut Oil is one of my favourite oils. Not only does it smell heavenly, last forever but it is also multipurpose. Below, I've listed 10 of my favourite uses for coconut oil. 


1. Prepoo 
Applying coconut oil to the hair prior to washing helps protect your strands against hygral fatigue. Hygral fatigue is damage caused to the hair by the frequent swelling and contraction of the strands through the absorption and release of water during washing. 

2. Makeup Remover 
Apply coconut oil to cotton wool and use it to gently remove your makeup, especially stubborn eye makeup.

3. Body Scrub 
 Mix coconut oil and sugar to make your own body scrub.

4. Oil Rinsing
 Check my post here to find out more about oil rinsing.

5. Face Mask
Mix coconut oil with honey to create a moisturising face mask.

6. Facial Moisturiser
 Coconut oil works as a gentle moisturiser for those with sensitive skin.

7. Soften Dry Elbows
 Massage coconut oil into elbows whilst damp.

8. Soothe Burns 
 Coconut oil can be used to soothe sun burn, to burns caused by the iron or even the flat iron.

9. Oil Cleansing Method
 1) Mix Coconut with Olive oil and/or Castor oil, massage into your face. 2) Apply a clean warm towel and allow the steam from the towel to open your pores. 3) Once the towel cools down, remove it without scrubbing. 4) If necessary repeat process. 

10. Bath Oil
Melt coconut oil and apply to bath water for smoother, softer skin. 


Wednesday, 8 October 2014

5 Reasons You Are NOT Reaping the Benefits of Protective Styling

Hey beautiful people, I hope you're all doing well. It is now now getting colder and many of you, like myself, will be tucking your hair away to protect it from the drying weather. Protective styles include weaves, wigs, extensions, two strand twists, canerows/cornrows, mini braids and the list could go on. Protective styling can be used for length retention, time saving, versatility and personal choice. Below I have put together 5 reasons why you may not be reaping the benefits of protective styling.

Love this picture of Beyonce!!

1) Incorrect Installation
Hair that is too tight can pull the hair straight out the follicle, especially along the hairline. Over a period of time this can lead to traction alopecia. Incorrect installation also includes frying your hair with a blowdryer before styling, I've heard one too many stories of how an impatient stylist ripped through people's hair with a high heat blowdryer and little heat protectant. There is a wealth of information on the YouTube, if you do not want to fall victim to a impatient stylist, learn to do your hair yourself. 

2) Not Taking Care of your Hair 
When protective styling it is very important that your still care for your hair. Moisturising your hair is a must, especially when using synthetic hair as it draws the moisture out of your hair more than human hair. Failing to moisturise your hair will result in dry brittle hair upon take down, dry hair equals breakage and breakage leads to lack of length retention. Cleansing the scalp is also important, a clean scalp creates optimal conditions for hair growth. For those who do not wish to wash their hair whilst sporting a protective style, there is an easier way. By applying witch hazel to a cotton bud you can effectively cleanse your scalp. 


3) Being Over Protective a.k.a Keeping the style in for too long
Hair kept in braids, weaves etc. for too long can cause more harm than good. As your hair grows more, added stress is put on your hair follicles from the added weight. For protective styles done solely with your own hair such as mini twists, keeping the style in for too long can lead to matting. 


4) Incorrect Removal of Style
Patience is key when taking down a protective style especially when using scissors. You do not want to cut your own hair in the process of cutting thread or added hair in a bid to save time. You also need to avoid ripping through your hair when you stumble upon a tangle. Once you have removed your style you need to spend time thoroughly dentangling your hair, you will have an ample amount of shed hair that needs to be removed. 


5) Your Braids/ Twists are Too Small or Too Heavy
 Poor choice of style can be detrimental for the health of your hair. Braids/Twists that are too small can also be detrimental. Attempting to undo these little braids/twists with your not so little hands can cause substantial damage to your ends especially when you start running low on patience. Hair that is too heavy puts added stress on the hair follicle and can potentially rip your hair out. 




What would you add to the list? 


Monday, 6 October 2014

Twist & Curl Frohawk




Products Used
Aphogee Style and Wrap Mousse


Directions 

Step 1 
a) Apply product to freshly washed hair. 
b)Two strand twist hair and wrap around perm rod ensuring the ends are lying flat
c)Leave to dry 

Step 2
Remove rollers 

Step 3
Apply oil to hands and gently unravel twists

Step 4
Pin sides of hair up to create a frohawk



What do you think? Have you tried this style before?

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Review: Kera Care Natural Textures Butter Cream



Promises
Everyday Moisturizer. A moisture locking soufflé that not only hydrates curls and coils, but also employs  Lanolin plus Argan, Abyssinian and Castor natural oils to achieve proper natural oil and moisture (lipophilic) balance. Hair becomes amazingly smooth and the Amla & Shikakai Botanicals enhance the shine of the hair. Promotes healthy hair growth.

Directions 
1. Apply sparsely or generously based on the hair’s need for moisture, manageability and vitality.
2. Rub between palms and scrunch onto hair gently so that curls & coils are not disturbed.
3. Also may be used to set soft lustrous twists and twist-outs.
4. May be used daily.


Ingredients
Aqua/Water/EAU, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil, Theobromo Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Emulsifying Wax NF, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Glycerin, Lanolin, Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Cera Alba/Beeswax/Cire D’abeille, Phyllanthus Emblica (Amla) Extract, Acacia Concinna )Shikakai) Fruit Extract, Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil, Crambe Abyssinica Seed Oil, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Hydrolysed Wheat Protein, Triticum Vulgare (Wheat) Germ Oil, Betaine,Carbomer, Panthenol, Tocopheryl Linoleate, Triethanolamine, Potassium Sorbate, Diazolidinyl Urea, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, Fragrance/Parfum, Citronellol, Benzyl Benzoate, Limonene, Butylphenyl Methylpropional, Linalool, Alpha Isomethyl Ionone.
(silicone free, sulfate free, paraben free)

Friday, 5 September 2014

Curlfriend: Anna

Hey lovely people, allow me to introduce you to my beautiful Curlfriend Anna. 




Have you always been natural?
No, I haven't always been natural. When I was 11 years old I got my first relaxer but it went totally wrong. My aunty at the time who claimed to have done hairdressing before, probably in a previous life, forgot to add the activator the liquid thing and only used the white creamy substance. So that was a fail. So I grew it out and permed it again when I was 16. Then at the age of 21 I decided to transition to natural hair. Then a couple of months ago. I randomly just decided to cut all my permed ends. I didn't even note it down it was that random. I wish I did now.


What were your main reasons for deciding to transition back to natural?
One of the main reason was that it felt as though my hair was no longer reacting well to perm- it was
constantly breaking, some parts of my hair would perm and some wouldn't and I just didn't like the browny colour my hair was becoming, the more I permed my hair. Plus I kept on seeing more and more people going natural and I just loved it so I thought I might as well jump on the bandwagon.


Do you have a regimen?
Erm I'm still learning about what my hair likes but I think recently I'm finding a regimen that's kinda working for me. I prepoo my hair with TRESemmé naturals conditioner. I leave that on for half an hour wash it out. Then shampoo with elasta qps conditioning shampoo and condition with TRESemmé naturals shampoo with avocado oil and elasta qps olive oil and mango butter. Leave it in for 2 hours which I actually think is too long but yeah. Wash it out then use a curling custard and some oils to style.

What are your favourite products?
My fave product has to be TRESemmé natural conditioner. It is the bomb.com. Nuff said lol. Also lavender oil and At One botanical root revitaliser is great from dry scalp and it smells awesome.

What are your hair goals?
My hair goal is to just have healthy hair and hopefully if it's healthy it will grow to a decent length. Don't really have any length goals to be honest. Actually I can't wait for the day I can put my hair in a decent sized bun. That's been my dream since my permed days lol.

What are do's and don't for your hair?
I have to moisturise my hair every night. If I don't the following day I'm screwed.
Don't put too much product as it can leave horrible white residual that look like dandruff.  
3 days after washing my hair I get really lazy with my hair and don't really detangle or brush my hair so just being consistent with my hair is a must.
































Have you got any tips for newly naturals?
My tips would be:
1) not to rush out and buy every product you see in the hair shop. Learning what your hair likes may take some time but you will eventually get there.

2) if you have problems with your hair such as dry scalp or breakage in certain areas buy products to sort these out, don't ignore these just because your hair is still growing.

3) for a long time I did protective styles such as braids because I couldn't be bothered to deal with my hair issues such as dry scalp so my hair has grown but it isn't the healthiest so don't use protective styling to shy away from your hair issues.

4) This is a big one- don't protective style without looking after your hair underneath. I'm still working on this



Join me in wishing Anna all the best on her natural hair journey and be sure to visit her blog whatannabought.blogspot.co.uk

Sunday, 24 August 2014

6 Signs That You Need A Trim

When it's time for a trim our hair will often give us signs to let us know. Beneath I've composed a list of 6 signs that your hair may be giving you to let you know that it's time for a much needed snip snip.


(Not my image)

1) You have noticeable split ends
If you have noticeable split ends, trimming your hair is a good idea. There are no ways to permanently repair split ends despite what manufactures lead you to believe but there are ways to prevent them, ie minimising your use of styling tools and effective deep conditioning.

2) Your hair Tangles Frequently
If your hair is frequently tangling this may be an indication of damage. Damaged hair will tangle with other strands making daily styling a task. This is especially noticeable for those with fine strands.

3)You are not retaining any length
This essentially means that your hair is breaking off at the same rate it is growing. This may be an indication that you need a trim and may also need to alter elements of your regimen.

4) You can't remember when your last trim was
If you cannot remember when your last trim is this may be a sign that you need a trim. I keep a hair diary of my washdays, protective styles, use of new products and trims etc.. By doing so I can easily pinpoint what agrees and disagrees with my hair.

5) Your hair is lacking in volume
If your hair no longer looks as full as it once had, this may be an indication that your strands are starting to taper at the ends.

6) Your hair is breaking when you handle it
If you have more small broken hairs than shed hairs when handling your hair then it is time for a trim.

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Review: Aubrey Honeysuckle Rose Moisurizing Conditioner


Promises: The sweet smell of success for hair. Trade those dry, thirsty tresses for vibrant, touchably soft hair with this moisture-intensive conditioner enriched with restorative herbal emoillents. Detangles and rehydrates to overcome dryness and leave hair ultra-silky and irresistibly fragrant.

Also recommended for bleached or highlighted hair. 

Directions: Shake well before using. After shampooing, apply to damp hair and work through, concentrating on the ends. Leave on for 1-2 minutes, then rinse. For deep conditioning: Apply to dry hair and distribute from the scalp to ends. Leave on for 15 minutes, then shampoo and condition hair as usual. 

Ingredients: Aqua, cetyl alcohol, alcohol denat. (38b, lavender*), butyrospermum parkii (shea butter)*, triticum vulgare (wheat) germ oil, lonicera caprifolium (honeysuckle) extract, aloe barbadensis (aloe) leaf juice*, glycerin, simmondsia chinensis (jojoba) seed oil*, rosa rubignosa (Rosa Mosqueta®) seed oil*, citrus grandis (grapefruit) extract, tocopheryl acetate, foeniculum vulgare (fennel) fruit extract, humulus lupulus (hops) extract, melissa officinalis (balm mint) leaf extract, chamomilla recutita (matricaria) extract, glycine soja (soybean) oil, daucus carota sativa (carrot) root extract, beta-carotene, hamamelis virginiana (witch hazel) water, angelica archangelica extract, chrysanthemum sinense flower extract, magnolia biondii flower extract, ascorbic acid. *Organic

Verdict
This is a product that I purchased after hearing so many good reviews. I like it but I do not love it!! This is good conditioner, there's no denying that. It leaves my hair soft without a doubt. It has amazing ingredients, which believe me you're definitely paying for. However, it does have some short comings. This conditioner does not have slip!!! It does not glide through the hair at all, you have to ensure that your hair is detangled before application. The smell is clinical, simply put it smells like Dettol. I don't know what honey suckle rose is supposed to smell like but I can bet my bottom dollar this is not it... On the plus side the smell does not linger once your hair is dry. Aubrey Honey Suckle Rose retails for £10.49 for 11 fl Oz from but not exclusively the Aubrey website. This is a reasonable price for a product with predominantly organic ingredients. Will I purchase again? Not unless it is on offer. TRESemmé Naturals Vibrantly Smooth Conditioner does a better job at moisturising my tresses and has amazing slip, not to add costs half of the price for 5x the amount. 

Have you tried this conditioner? What is your verdict?

Monday, 11 August 2014

Review: Hair Therapy Wrap


Price: £20 - £25 depending on stockist. I had a £24 Amazon voucher which left me with only £2.47 to pay. It retails for about apprx $25 - $30 in the US.

Stockist: Curly Emporium (UK), Treasured Locks (US)
There are also other stockist

Product Description:
Cordless Thermal Turban Heat Wrap for deep conditioning & Hydration. Dry, damaged hair can now be saved by Hair Therapy Wrap™. It allows your favorite deep conditioning products to penetrate more deeply than ever. Hair that’s damaged by the climate, heat-styling, colouring and bleaching, now has a solution to get more bang for your buck as you reverse damage. 

Features & Benefits: 
• Strengthens the hair and hair cuticle to reduce breakage 
• Deeply nourishes the hair roots and scalp 
• Softens and makes hair more manageable 
• Improves hair texture

Friday, 1 August 2014

3 Months Natural: Comparison & Tips


Top: 27th July 2014/ Bottom: 8th May 2014 (little under 3 months)

Hey Beautiful people!!! In a few days, it will be 3 months since I ended my transition. To be honest, it feels like much longer... this is probably because so much has occurred within this time. I am loving the journey thus far. My hair has definitely got thicker and longer since I transition chopped... can you tell from the pictures? I have more hang time. For the first time ever I wore my hair in a braidout out of the house... yes, I said out of the house. *covers face* In my defence the weather in England has been either too wet or too humid and I have only just mastered my braidout technique. The transition from wearing my hair back to wearing my hair out takes a little getting used to. 

Below I have shared some tips that have helped me on my natural hair journey. 

Tips

1) Prepoo with Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Honey - warm for a few second in the microwave and apply to damp hair. This is an ultimate lifesaver.

2) Wash day does not have to take all day - You can get the same result in a few hours. I've noticed that now and can now utilise the rest of my day. 

3) Wash in twists- this reduces shrinkage, tangles, and ensures that product is evenly distributed through the hair. I individually unravel the twists to shampoo and condition and re-twist. 

4) Trim Scraggly ends - healthy ends make a hairstyle look so much better... especially braidouts, as well as improving the overall health of your hair. 

Thursday, 17 July 2014

My Graduation!!


Hi Guys, as of Tuesday, I am officially a Law Graduate!!! After four long years filled with sleepless nights, late night shifts in the library, puzzling essay questions, makeshift meals, carrying heavy books, library fines, boring lectures, jokes, excitement, friendships and an amazing year abroad spent in Amsterdam... I can proudly say that I successfully made it to the end and graduated!!! Glory be to God!! My University experience is definitely one that I will cherish for life. It was during these four years that I learnt the most, not just academically but about life too. I entered University a teenager and came out a woman. 

Canterbury Cathedral

As you can probably imagine and even possibly relate, deciding what to wear for graduation was no easy task. I needed a dress that was of a respectable length being that the ceremony was taking place in cathedral, which is not as easy as it sounds when you measure in at just over 5 ft 9. My heart was set on wearing white from the beginning, as it provides a great contrast to the black gown. I tried on several dresses with little luck until I entered the shop that never fails me, French Connection. To accompany the dress I decided to buy versatile heels that I could wear not only for the ceremony but for many occasions. Stilettos were a no-no for me because of the cobbled floor and weathered stones leading to the cathedral.... a broken ankle was not on my agenda that day. I managed to find heels from Aldo that fitted the bill.


How to wear my hair for graduation appeared to be the biggest challenge. I contemplated straightening it but having not used heat on my hair for over two years, I decided not to. I've seen pictures of other naturals wearing braidouts and twistouts that looked lush but having not personally mastered the technique, I opted for a low bun. A low bun that was not low enough. In the end I put the hat on first and did my bun around it. This was no problem for me, I was simply happy to be there.

May this only be the beginning of my journey and may your dreams and wishes also come true.

Thursday, 26 June 2014

Review: Shea Moisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl & Style Milk

Promises: This moisturizing style cream detangles, conditions and controls curls while restoring body and shine

Directions: Apply as a no-rinse moisturizer and styling cream to damp, towel dried hair as needed.

Ingredients: Deionized Water, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter)*, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil*, Sugar Starch, Silk Protein, Essential Oil Blend, Melia Azadirachta (Neem) Seed Oil, Caprylyl Glycol, Sorbitol Esters, Algae Extract, Hyssopus Officinalis Extract, Salvia Officinalis, (Sage) Leaf and Equistum Arvense Extract, Daucus Carota Sativa (Carrot) Seed Oil, Lonicera Caprifolium (Honeysuckle) Flower (and) Tocopherol (Vitamin E) Hibiscus Flower Extract *Certified Organic Ingredient

Verdict: I love this product!!! I purchased the Curl & Style Milk because the Transitioning Milk that I love so much was out of stock. The consistency of this milk reminded me of a thick lotion. In comparison to the Shea Moisture Transitioning Milk, the Curl & Style Milk is thinner in consistency. The directions advise to apply the product to damp hair, however I find that using a product with a water-like consistency to my hair when damp works better. I use the Curl & Style Milk to to seal after I moisturise with S Curl... they go together like Bread & Butter!! I find that sealing with hair milks and shea butter works a lot better for my hair than sealing with oils. If you find yourself moisturising & sealing your hair frequently each day, I suggest you try a hair milk or a butter such as shea or avocado as a sealant. Along with the first hair milk I tried from Shea Moisture, I have no faults. The product lives up to its promises, it helps to define my curls/coils and reduce frizz. The scent is subtle but sweet, it smells good enough to eat. A little goes a very long way, depending on the length and density of your hair it could last the best part of a year. The ingredients are amazing and the price is reasonable. This was purchased for me from the US by my mother, she paid $11.59 from Beauty Spot. For my US followers, you can purchase this for $9.99 at Target. For my UK followers, it is not so easily available. One of the cheapest UK stockist is PAKS at £12.99. I would definitely recommend this product to anyone. For those wondering whether I prefer the Curl & Style milk to the Transitioning Milk, I would have to say, it's a draw. I love them both!!

Have you the tried the Curl & Style milk or any other Shea Moisture product?

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Newly Natural: How I've Been Styling my Hair

Hey beautiful people *waves*. I've been natural for just over 3 weeks now... not long at all but it feels great. As the McD's campaign says, I'm Lovin' It. The ease of not having to deal with scraggly ends is nothing short of refreshing. It takes me little to no time to style my hair, I'm actually surprised at how quick it is. My friends must be so tired of me, I'm consistently sending them pictures of how I've chosen to wear my hair on that particular day. I guess that's what friends are for aye... and of course that's what this blog is for. Without further ado, this is how I've been styling my hair over the past few weeks, I'm loving the versatility, let me know what you think.






Thursday, 8 May 2014

100% Natural


Hey Guys, I finally did it!!! I cut my relaxed ends off. I'm now 100% natural. I know I was going to wait but I looked in the mirror before washing my hair on Sunday and decided IT WAS TIME. I haven't had the chance to enjoy it yet because I have three deadlines next week (pray for me). Despite that, I can officially say I love it. At first I didn't feel much, I literally cut my relaxed ends off with little to no emotion. I guess it hadn't sunk it yet but when I took out my chunky plaits today to go to the library, I looked in the mirror and couldn't help but feel great!!! I set out to transition for 2 years despite the naysayers, I went through the bad hair days and the extended detangling session and I finally reached my goal *moonwalks*. I feel like a new person. I love everything about my hair, shrinkage and all, and believe me my hair shrinks a lot. 

It may sound cliché but my transition has taught me so much. I have learnt about hair care, about the importance of a balanced diet and exercise. Through the knowledge I gained, I was able to help others. I have learnt how supportive people can be both my personal friends and internet friends. I have learnt to disregard the negativity. I have learnt to be patient. Most importantly I learnt that true beauty comes from within. In life it doesn't matter what people think of you, what is important is what you think of yourself. My natural hair journey has begun, my goal is to maintain healthy hair and with the health, growth will come. 

Big thanks to all of you that supported me through my transition, I really appreciate it :). Anyone who is transitioning, don't give up, you can do it. If you haven't done so already check out my 2 years post relaxer post to see what my hair looked like before. A video will be uploaded in due course (need to edit it).

P.s. posts are going to be few and far between until the 28th May, the day of my last exam. 

Saturday, 12 April 2014

2 Years Post Relaxer!

I am officially 2 years post relaxer!!!!! 2 whole years since I last relaxed my hair!!! I'm still in a state of shock. I hit the two year mark on monday but I was unable to really appreciate what it meant because I had a 5,000 word paper to write. It has officially sunk in. *happy dance* *moonwalks*
  
I can't wait to end my transition or maybe I can ? Not really sure. I have quite a lot of relaxed ends left which makes thoughts of ending my transition a wee bit daunting. On the other hand I'd love to style my hair without feeling restricted by my two textures. I'd love to just wear my hair out. I've been wearing buns for literally the whole 2 years. I've missed hair framing my face. I've missed being able to use my hair to cover the cheeky little blemish that occasionally decides to seek refuge on my face. I've missed tucking my hair behind my ear. The little things ay. 

I've decided for the chop date to coincide with my last exam at university in about 2months time. That way it can be symbolic. I want to share the experience with you guys so I'll definitely record it. In the mean time here are some pictures I took of my hair today :).





Check out my hair at 1 yr post relaxer to see the progress.






Monday, 17 March 2014

Review: Kinky Curly Knot Today Leave-in/Detangler

Promises: 
This creamy herbal conditioner is enriched with botanical extracts designed to smooth the cuticle and to remove knots, snarls and tangles from thick curly hair.

Directions:
Apply generous and work through troubled sections with a wide tooth comb

Thick Coarse Curls: Use a generous amount as a leave in and completely detangle hair before applying Kinky-Curly styling products

Loose Wavy Curls: use moderate amount as a rinse out or leave a little on the ends before applying Kinky-Curly styling products

Ingredients:
Organic mango fruit extract, organic slippery elm, organic marshmallow root, organic lemongrass, cetyl alcohol, behentrimonium methosulfate, citric acid, phenoxyethanol and natural fragrance

Verdict: 
I love this product. It is the best detangler I've come across. I keep it within arms reach when I'm finger detangling. It does such a good job at melting my knots away!!! It does exactly what it claims and definitely lives up to it's name. I also like KCKT as a leave in, although it's not heavy enough to use alone for my type 4 hair. This comes as no surprise to me as it is a gel like consistency. I tend to seal with 100% Shea Butter or Shea Moisture transitioning milk, which does the trick. The fragrance is fruity, I can't quite pinpoint what it reminds me of but it's pleasant. The ingredients are awesome in my opinion, it really stood out to me that the 1st ingredient was not water. I love most things about this product but the price! In the U.K the 8oz KCKT sells for £12.95 and in the U.S $11.99. As much as I like it, £12.95 is just not worth it for me, I'm almost certain I can find an equally good alternative for 1/2 the price. Would I purchase again? Yes, but only if I personally bought it in the U.S or if someone brought it back for me.

What are your thoughts on KCKT?
What is your favourite leave-in/ detangler?

Saturday, 8 March 2014

Holiday Hair: Packing, Styling & Swimming

We're approaching that time of year where some of us go on holiday/vacation. As a frequent traveller, I thought I'd share some travel tips with you. These tips are helpful for relaxed, transitioning and natural hair.


I took this photo in Alicante (Spain) in Feb 14. I love Sunsets!!!


Packing Tips



1) Travel sizes may not be realistic

I've ran out of hair products because I decided to put my hair products in those travel size containers. Don't make that mistake. I think the travel sizes work best for leave-in conditioner and shampoo, products that you don't use as much. I ran out of moisturiser when i was in Jamaica. I had to alternate between using water and conditioner and my cousin's wave nouveau (she wasn't hot on sharing -___-). Depending on where you travel you may be able to buy products but I'd suggest packing to avoid the risk and wasting time trying to find products.


2) Put hair products in a plastic bag when in your suitcase. 

The air pressure along with the manhandling of your suitcase at the airport may cause your products to leak. The bag prevents your clothes from getting stained. Believe me stained clothes are far from ideal when you do not have access to a washing machine or even an iron if you manage to hand wash. 


3) Pack Shea Butter!

Along with my moisturiser, conditioner and shampoo... I will always pack Shea Butter. Shea butter can protect your hair from sun damage. I don't know about you but if I'm in the sun for too long my hair gets HOT. We often forget that like cold weather, hot weather can also cause damage. If you're like me and are not keen on wearing a hat, shea butter is also great at providing protection against ultra-violet radiation. 


Sunday, 2 March 2014

Oil Rinsing

Oil rinsing is adding oil to your hair after you shampoo either before or after you condition. I oil rinsed after I shampooed because to me it makes more logical sense. If shampoo has just stripped my hair of moisture it makes more sense to oil rinse after I've restored the moisture through deep conditioning. It's simple all you need is your favourite oil/oils.

Benefits
Moisture Retention
Soft, Smooth Hair 
Easier Detangling
Natural Shine
Reduction of Frizz

I used: 
Hairveda CoCasta Shikakai Oil
Organic Virgin Coconut Oil
Jamaican Black Castor Oil
Peppermint Oil
(I used what I had. Remember to use coconut oil in its liquid form)




Verdict
I tried oil rinsing for the first time last night and I LOVED it. My hair felt amazing as soon as I applied the oil. I rinsed the excess oil out with a mild acv rinse and t-shirt dried as usual. My hair felt so good that I was tempted not to apply my leave-in conditioner. My hair was soft, moisturised, more defined and had a natural shine. Why hadn't I tried it sooner? If I'm honest the reason I hadn't tried it sooner is because I was being cheap... I didn't want to use my oils to rinse my hair *covers face*. I shall definitely be adding this to my wash routine and I encourage you to do so also. If you lose a lot of moisture when washing your hair, this is for you! The recommended oils are Coconut Oil, Castor Oil, Olive Oil and Avocado Oil. You can use one oil or multiple oils, play around and see what works for you. There's a before and after photo below... the proof is in the pudding.

Before (left) and After (Right)
This is the same coil of hair, it's easy to find because
it's one of the few pieces I've snipped during my transition


Have you tried oil rinsing before?


Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Birthday Outfit





Coat - Zara // Vest - H&M // Jeans - Gap // Boots - Kurt Geiger 

Black Jeans have become my new staple. They're easy to dress up and dress down and pretty much go with everything in your wardrobe. I think my next purchase may be a white pair of jeans.... I haven't owned a pair since secondary school, mainly out of my fear of having a VPL (visible panty line) and getting them dirty.

This was the outfit I wore on my birthday for my unofficial birthday meal. The faux fur coat and boots are both new purchases, I saved them especially for my birthday... am I the only one who saves new items for a special event? I decided to wear all black and add suede wine boots from KG for effect. The blue lining of the coat is somewhat annoying to me but not to worry. Can you believe I got these boots for £29 down for £160, bargain or what? The current sale price is £75 on the KG website.

A faux fur coat is a wardrobe staple in my opinion!! You can recycle your coat year after year after year. You can wear it on date night with the hubby or to a casual lunch with the girls. If you live in England or a country with similar weather, you can even wear it practically all year round because Summer fails to exist.

What are your favourite items in your wardrobe ?


ps. I'm currently merging all elements of my blog onto the main page. Let me know what you think, all feedback welcome :).

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

D.I.Y Perm Rod Set

Last weekend I attempted my first perm rod set for my birthday dinner. I wasn't sure how it was going to turn out but I decided whatever the outcome I would work with it.

You will need:
Perm Rods - I used 59 in two different sizes
Moisturiser
Oil- for shine
Gel/Mouse/Setting Lotion - a product that will help the curls to set
Time- preferably over night

Instructions
1) Part the hair, starting from the back
2) With each section moisturise and seal, apply some oil and a little bit of gel
3) Wrap the hair around the perm rod from the bottom up making sure your ends are smooth
4) Roll the rod upwards until at the scalp and secure
5) Once completed wait until your hair drys
6) Once dry apply oil to your hair and take rods down and style

I did mine on freshly co-washed hair to help my hair set

Sorry about the quality of my photos these were taken on my phone.

At first I wasn't sure about the results but after I played around with it I loved it. In the end I opted for an updo created with hair slides and bobby pins. I'm not sure why I haven't tried a rod set before. I'm hoping the more I practice the better they'll become. I paid 99p for each pack of 12 perm rods in my local beauty supply store.... It's a good investment if you ask me.

What do you think? Have you tried a perm rod set before?

Thursday, 6 February 2014

Review: TRESemmé Naturals Vibrantly Smooth Conditioner

Promise: TRESemmé Naturals Vibrantly Smooth Conditioner with certified organic coconut and jojoba extracts smooths away frizz leaving hair feeling noticeably soft and silky. With our silicone free formula for lightweight conditioning, hair looks shiny and incredibly healthy looking. Discover 10x stronger hair after just one use.* Formulated without parabens and also hypoallergenic, it is suitable and gentle enough for use on colour treated hair.


Directions:
Step 1: Always start with TRESemmé Naturals Vibrantly Smooth Shampoo
Step 2: Apply an adequate amount of conditioner from mid-shaft to ends first. Work anything that's left through the roots.
Step 3: Leave in for 2-3 minutes and then rinse thoroughly
Step 4: Finishing your look with TRESemmé Naturals Weightless Volumising Mousse and Non-aerosol Hairspray.
(I don't follow these directions on the bottle, they're just included for the purpose of the review)

Ingredients:
Aqua (water), Cetyl Alcohol, Stearyl Alcohol, Caprylic/capric Triglyceride, Stearamidropyl Dimethylamine, Lauroyl Lysine, Aspartic Acid, Cocus Nucifera (coconut) oil, Simmondsia Campestris/Aleurites Fordi Oil Copolymer, Distearyldimonium Chloride, Ethyl Alcohol, Isopropyl Alcohol, Benzyl Alcohol, Citric Acid, Parfum (fragrance)

Verdict:
I had to update my review on this conditioner. At first I was only using it to co-wash but it makes an amazing deep conditioner. This leaves my hair buttery soft, this is definitely a staple of mine. I can comfortably say this is one of the best conditioners I have ever used.
Consistency of the conditioner
This is also a great inexpensive product if you want to co-wash your hair with a conditioner which does not have silicones. Silicones are a synthetic compound common in hair products that tend to cover the hair with a waterproof coating. Some silicones are water soluble the majority used in hair products are not and require sulphate or  Cocamidopropyl Betaine to remove. I have a post where I spoke a little about Cocamidopropyl Betaine. I tend to co-wash more than I shampoo therefore it is important for me to use products that are water soluble so that I don't get product buildup on my strands/scalp. I definitely notice the difference with cowashing with a silicone free conditioner, my hair definitely doesn't feel as weighed down and it is more effective at cleaning my hair. This conditioner feels great in my hair and it has sufficient slip, although once my hair dries it is not as soft as it could be. I paid £4.99 for 750 ml from either Superdrug or Boots which is a decent size for the price. The ingredients are okay, don't let the 'naturals' in the name fool you into thinking that this is an organic product because it's not... it just has a few natural ingredients. The ingredients do not bother me. Would I purchase again, definitely! The TRESemmé Naturals Vibrantly Smooth Conditioner gets a 5/5 stars.

Have you used this conditioner?
What are your favourite conditioners for co-washing?

Quick Hair Update

Hey Guys, I know I've been M.I.A or as we say in London, I know I've been ghost. Studies are getting the better of me. 3 more months until I finish university, can I get a whoop whoop? lol. I'll be 22 months post relaxer tomorrow, which is actually my birthday and guess what... I'll be 22! I feel so blessed to have made it this far, both with my journey to natural and in this journey called LIFE. Just 4-5 months before I do the snip... eeek. Excitement is not the word... hopefully by then I'll feel ready. I guess I'll savour these last few months with my relaxed ends because once this time has passed it's gone forever. As a whole my hair is definitely looking healthier, I'm not sure what i've been doing differently. Below is a picture that I took earlier this week, had I not taken the picture myself I would not have believed that that was my hair. I looked at this picture and thought 'wow my hair has really grown'. I strongly recommend taking pictures to record your progress. Whenever you feel defeated you can look back to see how far you've come... this can apply not only to hair but to life in general.

How have you been recording your progress with your hair journey?

ps. I'll be doing some product reviews this month so keep an eye out. 





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