Keep the Content Rolling

When I started this blog, I was so excited to share my experience dealing with my low porosity hair. I had no idea that there were so many of you out there, like me, frustrated with their hair and not being able to apply the “natural guidelines” that worked so well for others in the curly community. Over time my blog has evolved to a place where I can share little details not only about my hair, but also my life. I started out eager and pushed out content on a regular basis. That is until I pushed out a baby (TMI, too descriptive? oops).

Any way, I’m trying to get back to more regularity and have continuous content on the blog. I’d like to keep the conversations we’ve shared going and learn more about your experiences. So, in order to do that, I promise to try to post at least one entry per week, probably on Sundays.  I hope I’m able to fulfill this promise. However, I feel like putting it out there in writing to my readers and the blog universe, holds me accountable and makes my goal seem mor attainable.

If you blog and are balancing other things in life, be it kids, work, etc., what do you do to stay on schedule?

Back to B.A.S.I.C.S

If you read my last post then you already know that I haven’t been showing my hair enough love and giving it the attention it needs. Sometimes life gets hectic and honestly I don’t have the time for complicated hair regimens. Still to make sure my hair stays healthy and looks healthy, I’ve decided to just keep it simple and give it time to breathe. Simplicity really is the key to many things in life, I think so, at least. So here is my rule of thumb for keeping it basic.

B – Be gentle

A – Always detangle

S – Shampoo/mud-wash once per week

I – Intense Conditioning

C – Creamy, moisturizing leave-ins

S – Style without manipulating too much

 

That’s it. More than that is not necessary. How do you keep things simple?

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How My Hair Teaches Me To Love

This summer while on vacation in Boston I had my hair professionally styled. Actually, I had it flat ironed twice (yikes).  The first time, I went to a stylist, I’d gone to as a child. He took his time, used low heat, and left me with lots of volume. . I really loved the fullness and body my hair had after he finished styling it.

I wanted to surprise my husband and let him see my hair straight. So, before returning home, I went to my sister’s stylist, who I’d been to many times in the past, when my hair was relaxed. Unfortunately, my experience wasn’t as positive as the first time. She was a little rough detangling, used high heat to blow dry and straighten my hair, took two passes each time she flat-ironed it (gasp)! I nervously squirmed around in the chair and asked her if my curls would return (my passive way of suggesting that she was using too much heat). She assured me it would as my hair is not flat ironed often and does not hold the memory of being styled straight, so thus should revert easily.

When I came home with my hair straight, I got loads of compliments. I admit it, I enjoyed the attention, as well as the ease of styling my straight hair. I started getting used to seeing myself with straight hair. So when wash day came around I started using curl formers to stretch my hair. The other day, while pulling my hair up into a bun, I noticed it felt and looked rather dry and lackluster.

I decided to stop forcing my hair to do what it doesn’t do naturally and embrace my curls again. My going natural is a continual journey and learning experience. It’s not just about hair, but also about love and acceptance. I want to accept myself, every aspect, and love the skin I am in. It’s so easy to point out what one doesn’t have or what one would like to improve upon and rarely praise the positive things we possess. This shouldn’t be confused with bragging or boasting, but truly being okay with who I am, flaws and all.

I’m back to my curls this week and I’m going to be giving my hair lots of TLC. This is not to say I’ll never flat-iron my hair again, but I don’t plan on it anytime soon. And next time I’m uncomfortable in a stylists chair, I’ll be sure to be vocal and state my apprehensions (this should apply to most matters in life).

On another note, the other day, I was at the pediatrician’s office and she commented that my son was really cool and laid-back. She had just returned from vacation and said he was such a nice baby to see upon returning from her holiday, because of his temperament. Then she went on to say that it must be due to his parents. I told her I wasn’t sure about that. She turned to me and asked, “why is it that when someone says something about a child being bratty, impatient or anything negative, the parents, usually moms, take full responsibility about what they might have done wrong? However, when it’s about something positive, rarely do we claim to take part.” You know what, she’s right? It’s so easy, for people, and I have the feeling, women especially, to internalize a lot of negative events and take the blame. Why not claim good?

So here’s my “better late than never” resolution this year is say one positive and lovely thing I like about myself each morning. And to spread the positivity, today I’ll add something positive about my readers/blog subscribers. I love how sweet and thoughtful your comments are and that thanks to you all this blog is an open and friendly platform. So stay lovely and stay you.

I know a lot of sad and negative events taking place in the world now, but I’d love to know: What are you  loving about life/yourselves these days.

 

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Summer Product Haul/Review

Hi Everyone,

I’m back from my stay in the States. A lovely time was had by all. With so many hands to pass around and care for the Peanut, I was really able to enjoy a little “me” time and just do some things with friends. I loved being able to catch up with friends over tapas and mojitos or grab brunch and do a little shopping by myself, knowing that my little boy was in good hands. Peanut loves his second home and he really enjoyed meeting all his family and friends. He especially enjoyed his time with grandma, she always spoils him rotten.

While home, I took advantage of buying some of my favorite must-have hair products (i.e Giovanni 50/50, Smooth as Silk, Aussie Moist and KCKT) as well as trying some new ones. I’ll be reviewing three products: a shampoo, a conditioner and a gel (gasps, yes, I used an actual gel) that I’m really enjoying at the moment.

1. Cantu Shea Butter Moisturizing Cream Shampoo

Cantu Shea Butter Moisturizing Cream Shampoo - 13.5 fl oz

Claim: Promises to moisturize your hair with oils, keep your hair and scalp healthy and clean away build up without stripping the hair.

I’ve only used the product once, so this is really a first impression. However, I actually applied this shampoo not only to my scalp and roots, but also to my hair. It didn’t leave my hair feeling stripped and I got really defined curls after using the conditioner. So it does deliver on what it claims.

Texture: Runny and pearly, almost an egg-white consistency. I didn’t find that it was very creamy, but in the middle.

Lather: Excellent, bubbly and slippery, which is just what I was looking for.

Price:Very affordable, I spent about $4.00 for 13.5 ounces and I feel that a little goes a long way.

Overall Impression: I actually really like this conditioner shampoo, especially how it cleaned my hair yet kept it moisturized at the same time. Normally, when I use conditioner shampoo, my hair shrinks up immediately, not the case with this one. Notice, I kept accidentally referring to it as a conditioner, because clean and moisturized aren’t generally characteristics that describe my hair after shampooing.

2.Trader Joe Tea Tree Tingle Conditioner

This product is so good. It doesn’t even need a review! Why are you still reading this, go out and get yourself and bottle of this conditioner. You won’t regret it! I only regret not being able to stock up on more of this stuff. It’s moisturizing, slippery and makes detangling a breeze! It’s creamy and so rich and leaves hair touchably soft and shiny. The peppermint essential oils also smell wonderful and it’s very calming. I can’t say a single bad thing about this product. It’s very affordable, at about $4.00 a bottle, you should always have a bottle of this stuff on hand. I will buy more on my next trip home!

3. Curls Goddess Curl Gel

Claims: “Curls Goddess Curls is infused with Plumeria Alba Flower Extract and Aloe leaf juice, this botanical curl gel imparts sheen, fights frizz, and creates popping curls! “

Aloe is really low on the list, which means there is probably very little used in the product. Just mentioning that f0r my readers who know that I generally don’t use aloe on my hair. I used this product once so far, so again, this is more of a first impression. I can say I’m really impressed at how defined my twist out was after using this on top on my leave-in. I have a little frizz on day 3, but didn’t have any on day 1 and 2. I don’t mind a little frizz. My hair is also touchably soft, it didn’t flake at all or make my curls crunchy.

Texture: Goopy and slightly runny, making it a breeze to distribute evenly.

Price: I believe I paid about $9.00 for 8oz of this gel. That’s like over a buck a ounce, which I think is on the pricier side, when compared to other drug store gels. What caught my attention with this gel is that it doesn’t contain any silicones, mineral oil, parabens or alcohol. I didn’t want anything coating or drying.

Overall Impression: Positive. I will give this another try on the next wash day. In the meantime, I’m happy to have found a gel that works on my hair, because my hair hates gels usually! Also, I like how moisturized my hair still is on day 3. It gave my hair some weight, which helps elongates my curls. It wasn’t that voluminous on day one, but day 2 I got stretch + volume, so win-win.

Have you tried any of the above products? Any new products that you’re loving these days?

Home sweet home

Hi Everyone,

I’m home in the States for a bit. I’m having fun showing my little one around and introducing him to family and friends. I went to Trader Joe’s yesterday to pick up some of that Triple Treat conditioner all the natural hair gurus boast about. You know what. It was SOLD OUT! I’m thinking that as soon as that stuff hits the shelf, naturals be like “I better stock up”. Seriously though there are some serious product junkies out there… I’m hoping I can get some while I’m here… Anyway I bought nourish spa in the meantime… We’ll see how that works. If you happen to be in a Massachusetts Trader Joe’s and you see this conditioner, help a girl out and let her know. Please and thank you!

What product do you notice disappearing before it’s even stocked?

How to Not Get Enough Sleep

I bet you were all thinking that the response to this title should be: have a baby. Well, this how to doesn’t actually involve a baby.

Step 1. Put baby to bed. He sleeps through the night now, from 8pm – 7am. My husband and I consider ourselves very lucky.

Step 2. If you’re wise, go to bed by 11:30, so you can get at least 7.5 – 8 hours of sleep. Suddenly, get the bright idea to experiment with Curlformers and use them on your old stretched out hair style. Just add a spritz of water, gel and oil.

Step 3. Proceed to regret this idea as you get halfway through. Your arms are sore from holding them in that awkward “M”, YMCA position. And yeah, you might have yanked out a few hairs from being lazy and impatient.

Step 4. It’s 12:30am and you’re exhausted. Only a few pieces of hair left to go. In the meantime, get the bright idea to watch a little TV to keep you up and motivated and make the last 20 minutes bearable.

Step 5. You should’ve abandoned this idea at Step 1, but since you’ve finished, now you’ll be sleeping in these uncomfortable plastic noodles. #Youwilltossandturnandregretthisallnight!

Step 6. Wake up with a sore neck and scalp, go get baby, nurse and feel that you’ve done something right, because he’s giggling at the sight of your Curlformers. Baby even begins yanking at them and pulling them out of your hair, saving you some work. #yestochildlabor

Step 7. Finish taking out your Curlformers while peanut naps and hide your disappointment that it didn’t turn out as you’ve hope. Oh well, rock that blown out look and enjoy, because you’ll never get back those 3 hours you wasted with your ridiculous idea to style your hair at 10pm.

Are any of you guilty of bad late night decision-making, be it hair or anything?

Happy Friday Everyone!

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Oil Rinsing and Shopping in My Medicine Cabinet

Lately, I’ve been super fast on wash day. Having a child, has made me one of the most effective people, time-wise. Time flies when you’re raising a life, so I generally try to structure my day to get as much done as possible. I know my grocery store inside-out and can do a week’s worth of shopping in under 20 minutes. #Putmeonsupermarketsweep!

Any way, gone are the days of my 3-4 hour-long wash days. They are now generally 45 minutes to an hour. I either use my mudwash or shampoo (see my recent post on a shampoo product review), then condition my hair with a light, slippery conditioner. Lately, that has been Trésseme Naturals. I then apply oil (e.g. grapeseed oil) on each section of my conditioned hair, concentrating on my ends (voilà: reverse oil rinsing). Next I rinse the conditioner and oil, leaving a small amount in my hair for added slip. I apply a rinse out conditioner and let it sit for a few minutes (voilà deep conditioner) and go on with my shower rituals.

I notice my hair melts like butter at this phase of my wash regimen. Especially, with the “new” conditioner that I’ve used lately. That conditioner is Giovanni 50:50 Balanced Hydrating-Calming Conditioner. I’ve had this product in my cabinet for over a year, but didn’t give it much thought. I’m not sure if it’s because I oil rinsed before applying it to my hair.  However, all I can say is that my hair feels so soft and luscious when this touches my strands. I’m almost in disbelief. My hair seems to also stay moisturized for days after.

So there you have it readers, this is the conditioner that I’ve fallen in love with for the moment.

The scoop on Giovanni 50:50 Hydrating-Calming Conditioner

Claim: Promises to add moisture, shine and manageability as well as smooth frizz. That claim is true, it did all the above for my hair. In fact, the moisture and shine stayed with me for days.

Texture: Very thick, creamy and buttery in consistency.

Lather: Excellent, I love a conditioner that lathers nicely, helps me with detangling.

Smell: Soft, somewhat floral, but not overpowering.

Price: It’s  on the pricier side, about $8.00 for 8.5 ounces. However, as stated earlier, a little goes a long way.

Negatives: While I love Giovanni products and their modern sleek look, this bottle is not effective for getting out all the conditioner. Don’t get me wrong, I will be adding water to it and shaking it up until I get every last drop out of it. Although, I do wish more and more manufacturers would just start making upside down bottles. Just sayin’…

Have you ever tried this conditioner? Or any other Giovanni products? What conditioner are you in love with at the moment?

Have a great Sunday everyone!

 

Keep Calm, Stay Hydrated

I’m a strong advocate for health. I think that healthy hair starts from the inside out. On this blog, I often praise natural ingredients, such as rhassoul clay and rave about my favorite products, like Kinky Curly Knot Today. However, these are only topical applications and in the long run, while they help protect and cleanse my hair, they aren’t what make my hair healthy. A healthy diet, rich with fruits, vegetables and PLENTY of water help purify and hydrate the body, which can reap benefits for your hair. It’s so important that we get our daily intake of water. This is particularly important to me, since I am breastfeeding the peanut. I know I know it’s not always easy to get 8 oz of water a day. So I thought I’d share my favorite immune-boosting and hydrating drink with you. It’s simple, easy and delicious. I make 2 liters of this and am able to finish it all within a day.

 

Ingredients:

  • 2 liters water
  • 1 bag of green tea
  • 1 TBSP honey
  • 4 – 5 lemon slices
  • (optional grated ginger)
  1. Heat 1.5 liters of water. Add one tablespoon of honey and mix until dissolved. Add tea bag (and grated ginger),  let it steep for about 15 – 20 minutes.
  2. In a glass pitcher, add .5 liters of cold water. 4 – 5 lemon slices
  3. Once the green tea cools add to the mixture in the glass pitcher. Pop this in the fridge for a couple of hours or until chilled and enjoy as much as you’d like.

This drink it really light and refreshing for summer. It gives me an alternative to drinking straight water all the time. I even place it in a wine glass and enjoy it at lunch time. Makes me feel all fancy and sophisticated– even when I’m sometimes covered in green peas and sweet potato purée (the peanut has discovered the joy of blowing raspberries lately). Guess I can forget about those lovely white summer pants. Lol!

What’s your favorite way to drink water. Are you a purist or do you like to mix things up a bit?