Lessons of the Natural Hair Journey

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Having just been away now for some time, I took the time to really understand what it really means to have come this far in my hair journey. I have to admit, there had been some days where I had just been frustrated because of the back and forth of figuring out which products are right for me and how I wanted my hair to be but didn’t turn out that way.

Nowadays there are a lot of products on the market for black hair and sometimes it is hard to choose from because all of them have that promising effect and you are not sure which one will work on your hair best. And sometimes, well most of the time, you will try products on your hair that just disappoint you on the get go.

What I have learnt is that most of the time, you don’t need to complicate yourself by wanting every type of hair product. The thing is, hair does not need much complication. The more we complicate it, the more damage you put to it. Every article you read about hair, will not always work for you. Just Relax! And learn that LESS IS MORE

Reading too many articles will just confuse you more.

One other thing is that just because there are plenty of “natural hair products” out in the market, you are limited to them only. In fact, I’ve tried a lot of promising “natural hair products” which just didn’t work for my hair. I’m now learning to be versatile and to try out things outside of the box and figure out for myself which products work for my hair, whether it’s products from natural hair, relaxed hair or white hair depending on my hair needs.

Being in this journey has taught me a lot about life in general about patience, learning new things, endurance, and applying the ‘ less is more’ rule in life is one of the most important lessons to live a less complicated life.

Hope this helps!!!

Quick Fun Hairstyle

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There’s a hairstyle I tried a couple of days ago, (I call it the Dreadlocks effect because people presume I’m on dreadlocks!) of curly twists about a week ago, quick and easy to do. Less manipulation on your hair and it lasted me up to a week.

Steps:

  1. You just simply twist your hair in mini twists all over your head (I begin by securing my hair by the roots with a wool with each twist, so it can have a proper neat look and that it can last a couple of days)
  2. With those same twists, tie each twist into a bantu-knot
  3. Cover your head with a satin bonnet, and let it sleep overnight
  4. The next day, untie your bantu-knots (but not your twists)
  5. And Voila, you have your curly twists!
  6. And a great protective hairstyle too!

 

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Air Drying 4c Natural Hair

The preference between air drying and blow drying hair after a hair wash is one that goes a long way and still even today, depending on the type of hair you have. For relaxed hair, it has been practiced for years and is a usual thing that after a hair wash, the hair is exposed to the hair dryer and then styled afterwards.

But for natural hair, hair drying after a wash every time may more damaging to the coils.

I’ve finally discovered the secret of air drying natural hair which took me a while to figure the process of how to keep my hair from becoming super dry after a hair wash. I know to some of you it may not be much of a struggle, but dry hair is one of the major struggles we have as naturals. Even after moisturizing a thousand times, you still find it hard to maintain that moisture.

For 4a-c natural hair, a wash may be a bit different to looser natural coils as our hair dries up quickly.

Here’s what I’ve discovered:

I did hair a wash last weekend as I usually wash my hair and let it air dry for 24 hours or more ( hectic I know) but I realized that was my downfall. Air drying (to avoid heat from driers) is a basic simple way to keep your hair from heat damage. But air drying can be your biggest enemy if you don’t do it well and let your hair dry for a lot of hours as your hair can become dry and brittle.

Back to my routine, this time I tried air drying for about between 1 and 2 hours ( about 50 – 60%)  after my wash before detangling it, and that was one of my biggest answers I have been looking for since my hair journey for managing dry hair.

Let your hair dry about 50-60% (about 1-2 hours depending on the length of your hair and thickness of your hair) before detangling. I used Aunt Jackie’s knot on my watch detangling therapy, a wide tooth comb, my concoction of Dr miracles coconut leave-in conditioner mixed with water and my oil mixture of avocado and coconut oil for the detangling process. And it worked like magic! I did a protective style immediately after that of mini twists and they are still fresh today!

My advice to you for hair drying: Never let your hair air dry completely, make sure there’s still some water left in your hair.

Hope this helps!

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My hair twisted and detangled after a hair wash and nearly a week plaited

 

Quick Fun Facts: Did you know?

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African Braiding Hair is an ancient tribe which was founded in a couple of countries in the likes of Asia, Europe, Africa, Egypt and many more!

Hair braiding is predicted to have started back in the 3500 B.C but it cannot be traced to the exact time period located. In fact it might have started earlier than we can think.

I have once come across a quoted line which I found very interesting in the Old Testament in the Bible in the book of Song of Songs 7:5- “Your head is held high like Mount Carmel. Your braided hair shines like the finest; its beauty could hold a king captive”  🙂  If it can be traced in the Old Testament who knows how long it has existed!

Braided hair is still a trending style even to this day in many cultures, countries and races!

Product Review: Aunt Jackie’s and African Pride

It’s 2017 and I hope all is well with you. Let’s toast to a good year ahead!

These are probably the “not so good” products I have tried in the past year and I thought I should share the downs and probably the ups about the products I am about to mention. It’s been a roller-coaster year of trying new things and the journey will never probably end! When you are a natural you are bound to try new things all the time, and sometimes you might get disappointed about some of them.

It gets boring when sometimes you are too excited about the product you heard from a friend or a recommendation somewhere only to find out when you try it out, it’s not what you expected at all. So let’s get to it!

African Pride Olive Miracle- Anti Breakage Crème

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Pros:

  • The crème and consistency is actually very impressive
  • Quite slippery on the hair

Cons:

  • Felt like it dries out my hair in the long run
  • Leaves visible white marks on my hair which stays on until my next hair wash, especially when you put on a lot
  • Probably not best for 4c hair but for hair that is straighter
  • It mentions you can apply on the hair and scalp. I think it’s probably best to use it on your scalp only when you have natural hair

 

Aunt Jackie’s Curl la la Defining Curl Custard

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Pros:

  • The smell is nice. Might be quite strong for people who are sensitive
  • The colour and packaging is actually quite cute!
  • Very smooth consistency! Looks like yoghurt like you can eat it up!
  • Very slippery on my hair and leaves my hair smoother for longer
  • It does actually deliver to its promise
  • Leaves hair silky and shiny

Cons:

  • The downside of it is that it really shrinks my hair, I think up to 70%
  • Sometimes when I want to do certain hairstyles with my hair I’m unable to because my hair is really little every time I use it
  • It does mention you can blow dry your hair on the instructions though I never tried that out. It probably has a different outcome when you blow dry your hair.
  • It probably won’t be best for you if you enjoy your long natural hair

I hope you all enjoyed my product review! Please let me know of your thoughts if you have ever used these products and how they work for you. I would love to know!

 

Lessons and wisdom of 2016

As we all know as naturals, it takes a process to find what suitable products suit your hair. Through thousands of hair care products to choose from, it’s kind of impossible to try each and every one of them and the only thing we can do is to go with our instincts or to research as much as possible from other people with your hair type all over the internet.

The thing about natural hair is that it can be quite a frustration when you are unable to manage it or find those few products that make your hair the exact way you want it and I’ve heard some people complaining that they are tired of natural hair and want to move over to relaxed hair.

I will admit it is quite a process to get to understand your hair and it doesn’t happen overnight, it can take some months or even a few years. Especially for black Africans who have coily hair from hair type 4a-c. What I’ve learnt is that when you decide to be a natural, you need to have the patience for it. Study more about your hair type, and make sure you are ready for the challenge.

One thing I always remember at the back of my mind when I think about the frustration or sometimes when I just don’t feel like doing my hair( it does happen sometimes), is that I will reap the rewards of strong, healthy and growing hair in the long run! There always is. When you take care of your seed, it will eventually grow.

2016 has been an interesting year for me and a lot wisdom which comes along with it.As I’ve started this blog in April this year, I am really glad to have come this far. These are my few most important thoughts I thought I should share throughout the journey this year:

  • Never put on too much oil on your hair to avoid your hair being too greasy. A little goes a long way.
  • Some products you thought were great when you bought them and didn’t work, will never work on your hair. Just dust it off and move on!
  • Always try to moisture your hair to eliminate dryness which eventually leads to breakage.
  • Do not listen to everything people say regarding hair treatment and hair growth. Be realistic. And listen to your inner soul. Believe it or not your hair is not just hair; it’s a living nature from GOD!
  • If you working on a tight budget, you can still find easier ways to take care of your hair by using natural remedies or using reasonable priced products.
  • Forgive yourself. Not everything you do to your hair will be perfect!
  • It’s Okay to do protective styling such as braiding/weaving at times. If people reprimand you for not being a complete natural, it’s their problem, NOT YOURS!
  • And last but not least APPLAUD YOURSELF! YOU MADE IT THIS FAR! The JOURNEY CONTINUES INTO 2017. HAPPPPY!!!

 

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Why I stopped spritzing water on my hair during braids

So I’ve realised how doing this method by spritzing water on my hair while having braids could dry and damage my hair at the same time. I only started trying this method on the braids I installed twice before and I didn’t think much of it until I noticed pretty much dryness on my hair.
Again, the reason for spraying your natural hair with water is so that you can have moisture and then after applying oil or cream to lock in that moisture. With braids I found it different because even if you can spray water and apply oil or cream, it is much difficult to lock all the moisture with oil and cream on all strands of the hair.

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At first I would spray water only without locking the moisture in and I found my hair to be very dry and dull. Then I started using oil after spraying my braids and hair with water, but I found it very challenging to put it on every braid of the hair because not all of the oil can go through as the braids are connected tightly into the hair.
For this reason, I stopped doing this completely when I have braids installed because I hated the fact that my hair was very dry while my braids were installed and I had that uncomfortable feeling and I felt like maybe this was damaging my hair as well.
Right now I have twists installed and I opted for a braiding spray instead of water and oil. My hair feels a lot better now and it doesn’t feel as dry as it used to be while on braids. I use the Sta-Sof-Fro braid spray, and it is not only for spraying the braids and hair but also onto the scalp so it can be massaged so both my hair and scalp are hydrated, and the braids are kept shining as well!

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