Updates…

Ok I know it’s been a few weeks since my last post and to be honest I’ve been really  busy. So let’s catch up a bit.

A few weeks ago I posted a recipe on homemade flaxseed gel. I know I said that I would post a full review with pictures but I didn’t get a chance to. To be honest, it really wasn’t worth writing home about. At first I wasn’t going to write a review right away because well it was a total disaster. It was like I had dried mucus in my hair (I know it’s a bit graphic but it’s the best way to describe it). My hair was hard and crunchy and dry.  I started off with a co-wash of my hair with Suave Professional’s Almond and Shea Butter conditioner and followed up with a leave in. Added the flaxseed gel (made from the recipe I posted a while back) and allowed to air dry. My hair was pretty much like I said.  It was dry, crunchy, and had chunks of white goo in it. So I ended up washing everything out and styling my hair with my tried and true trio. However, I wasn’t about to give up on this just yet. I tried the recipe again adding less flaxseed to the mixture. This time there wasn’t any white goo in my hair but my hair was STILL dry and crunchy afterwards. No bounce or anything. It was like something out of the movie “There’s Something about Mary.” So refusing to give up (and because I had so much flaxseed lying around), I tried a third time with even less flaxseed and the result was zero curl definition and once again crunchy and dryness. So my final conclusion was that my hair did not like the flaxseed gel and that my hair health would probably benefit more from me EATING the flaxseed rather than trying to make a homemade hair product from it. So no go on the homemade flaxseed gel.

Now that fall is upon us (although it doesn’t really feel like it in the south), I’ve decided to start  thinking about rotating my conditioners and products. Although winters here in the south won’t be nearly as harsh on my kinks and curls as the winters in New England were, I still want to  make sure my hair is well taken care of. So today I decided to visit two old friends of mine and combine it with a new product I’ve heard very good things about. Today I revisited Coconut Milk and combined it with Aubrey Organics Honeysuckle Rose Conditioner for a much-needed deep conditioning treatment.  I’ve heard so many good things about this conditioner on Curlmart.com. It’s ingredients are all natural and vegan and it wasn’t very expensive. I found it at my local Vitamin Shop for about $7.  The conditioner was very thick and smelled amazing. So I combined a couple of tablespoons of  it with 1/2 can of coconut milk (solid portion only) until the mixture was nice and thick. I applied the mixture to my hair (after co-washing), applied my microheat cap and let it sit for about 45 minutes then rinse. I should point out that as I was rinsing I noticed that my hair was in near perfect little ringlets already just from having the conditioner in it. This has  happened to me only once when I used Kinky-Curly Knot Today conditioner. I almost hated to brush my hair because I was loving the curls so much. After completely rinsing I added my second old friend Giovanni 50/50 Balanced Hydrating and Calming Conditioner as a leave in while I detangled. The second thing I noticed was that my hair was super soft and very easy to detangle. After allowing my hair to air dry a bit I styled as usual with Eco Styler Olive Oil Gel. So far this combo has proved to work really well for my hair. My curls noticably popped into small little ringlets. Even The Hubbs commented on how great my curls were looking, even though they’re still wet. So depending on how this fall/ winter goes  in the south I think I’ll be using the coconut milk, Honeysuckle Rose and 50/50 Balanced  Hydrating  and Calming conditioners along with my Almond and Shea Butter and Eco Styler for my wash and go styles.

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One thing I’ve been noticing for a while now is that my hair is two colors. During the fall and winter last year I used a lot of henna and indigo on my hair for scalp and hair health. The last time I played with henna was back in February of this year and I used henna alone.  When you combine henna with indigo your hair ends up being black (like a black cat or a raven’s wing), but with henna by itself I usually end up with a reddish tint to my hair. Back in December of last year I used henna and indigo and in February I used henna alone. So while some of my hair stayed jet black my new growth and roots had a red tint. Now that the hair has grown out it’s much more obvious in sunlight. So in the upcoming weeks I plan to dye my hair black naturally by using henna over night and following up with indigo and a deep conditioning the next morning. I’ll have a post up when this is done.

Other than preparing my hair for the fall and winter months that’s pretty much it for updates. I haven’t thought much about other styles for the fall/winter, but I think I will play it by ear.  Many curlies like to go into protective styles for the winter but it just doesn’t work for me. I always end up styling my hair too tight and end up doing more damage than good and besides my hair seems happy out and about doing its own thing. I’ve been doing wash and go styling all summer long and have noticed a definite increase in thickness and new growth.  There’s just a lot less tension and strain on my hair and scalp and my hair seems to like it. So I figure as long as my hair is happy with this, then there is no need to change it for the winter. I will just have to wear my silk lined hats on the windy days for protection. Other than that, that’s it. Until next time…

Flax Seed Gel??

This week I started school. One of the first things I saw on campus was a fellow curly. She was sporting a fabulous teenie weenie afro in a wash and go style and had beautiful ringlets. Of course I had to stop her, compliment her and ask her to dish  on her products. We pretty much used the same conditioners to co wash with but she brought up something new to me.  To style her wash and go she used homemade flax seed gel.  Her curls were glossy and super soft with no sign of flakes, but what really caught my attention was that she was sporting 4th day hair. Her curls looked like she’d just styled them that morning. Sometimes, if I am careful,  I can pull of 4 day old curls with my Eco Styler Gel, but flaxseed gel sounds like it would be healthier for hair. Flax seed is full of nutrients such as Omega-3 Fatty Acids, Vitamin B,  fiber,  and a host of other nutrients . So what happens when nutrients are applied to the hair as well as ingested (I love muffins with flax seeds!)? Well, I figured I’d give the gel a try. Here’s the recipe I found on one of my favorite sites FromNaturewithLove.com (this is also a great site to order ingredients if you like to make your own products):

Ingredients:

2 Tbsp Whole Flax Seeds
1 cup water
Pure Aloe Vera Gel, if desired
Few drops of essential oil for scent

Instructions:

Bring water to a boil. Stir the seeds into the water and reduce heat. Simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring constantly, until a gel-like lotion is formed. Strain through a fine strainer or cheesecloth into a small bottle. Add essential oils and store in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. If desired, you can add some pure aloe vera gel for its moisturizing properties. Fill the bottle with flax seed gel until bottle is about 3/4 full, then fill to the top with pure aloe vera gel. Gel will not flake or make the hair hard or crunchy. Safe to use everyday.

I’ve seen several variations of this recipe. Some call for 1/2-1 cup of flaxseed. I’ll have to play with it a bit to see what my hair likes more. I’ll take a shot at this Friday and style with it Saturday. Sunday, I’ll be back with a full review, with pictures and a much over due length check. We’ll see how it goes!

Later!

New Favorite Products…

All summer long I’ve been sporting a wash and go hairstyle. I started the summer using the Kinky-Curly product line which worked great. The problem came when I ran out of the Knot Today conditioner. After visiting three stores that carried the product line in my area only to find that all three were sold out, I thought about ordering online. However I hate waiting for products to ship to me. So I did a bit of research online an came a cross a vlog comparing Kinky-Curly line to regular drug store products and a styling gel called Eco Styler. The curlygirl that did the vlog had great results. So I struck out to my local drug store and found a jar of the Eco Styler Olive Oil Gel and the price allowed me to indulge in a being a little bit of a product junkie. So I picked up a jar. On my way out I also noticed two other products. Suave Professionals Almond and Shea Butter Conditioner and Nature’s Gate Herbal Daily Conditioner. So I took the bait and picked up all three products.

So here’s what I did when I got home. I co-washed with the Suave Professonals Almond and Shea Butter Conditioner (which felt great on my hair), used the Nature’s Gat Herbal Conditoner Mixed with Coconut Milk as a deep conditioner (left in for 1 hour) and used my old faithful Herbal Essences Hello Hydration as a leave in rinsing just a little to evenly distribute. Using a white t-shirt I wrapped my hair for about 20 minutes to soak up extra moisture and to help my hair dry faster. I then applied the Eco Styler Gel in small sections. The results? My curls came to life just the way I wanted them to, organized chaos. I finished my style by flat twisting the front of my hair into a hair band to create a fun, funky, summertime style. With this combination of products, I was able to stretch the style out to three days. I sleep with a satin bonnet and in the morning I mist my hair with purified water and fluff, then off I go.

I really like the results with the EcoStyler Olive Oil Gel. Not only does it work well with just about any conditioner under, it’s pretty easy to find, costs under $5 per jar, its alcohol fee and dries without flaking. I admit I was a little skeptical because of the price. I actually paid $2.49 for my jar and didn’t think it would work at all, but it worked just as well as the Kinky-Curly line.  Don’t get me wrong I do love the Kinky-Curly line, but the only downside is that the products are made to work with each other leaving very little room (if any at all) for other products and it’s hard to get my hands on it in my area. I’ve tried using other conditioners under the Kinky-Curly Curling Custard and ended up with chunks of white sticky goo in my hair. Not cute. So looks like EcoStyler is my go too until I can get my hands on more Kinky-Curly products.

 Here are a few pics of the final results. The first three pics (after the picture of the products used) are of my hair on day one, the next  two are of day two hair and the final pic (with flower in hair) is of third day hair pic.

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Not bad huh?

Later!

KinkySheaPT