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Just a little update on my life and most of the things that I have going on at any point in time. :) So many things, so little time!! I...

Monday, December 12, 2011

Green Juice

I did some juicing today and came up with this. Is more savory than anything and next time I think I will add a little spinach and take some of the kale. If you like the taste of kale then go for it! But too much can make the juice a little too bitter.

1 Cucumber
1 Lime
1 Granny Smith Apple
5 Kale Leaves

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

My Juicing Adventure!!

I was on a quest for a new juicer and had been looking at tons of reviews when I decided on the one made by Hamilton Beach. Walmart.com was the most inexpensive place to purchase this juicer. I ordered it on a sunday night after spending my friday scouring the shelves of three different stores. It arrived today, which is a Wednesday. Not bad.

I opened the box and was very pleased with the appearance of this juicer and could not wait to try it out!

Check this video out!




My initial review of this product:

The blade plate and the size of the basket I am happy with. The tube in which the fruits and veggies enter into is large and can accommodate larger items without having to do much prep work. It also is long enough so that there is very little space between the blade plate and the end of the tube. This way you do not lose much juice. Some machines have a wider space and can result in the loss of entire chunks of fruit, like grapes or blueberries.

Because the tube is so wide it can cause whats placed in to bounce around while inside. If this happens, simply use the plunger to push down. If you are juicing a carrot for example or something similar, you can put in a bunch at a time to reduce this.

When you are juicing, press down very slowly to get the maximum amount of juice.

I do like this juicer and at this point I would buy it again. Time will tell if it will really hold up, but Hamilton Beach is not too bad with their products in my experience. I have had items die on me, but it was only after extensive over use and overheating the motor. I am sure I probably will not be running this juicer for any extensive amount of time.

It took less than 2 minutes to juice what I had in the video above.

Clean up was great. The brush it came with made it really easy and wiped the screen clean.

I see no issues with this juicer. Again, this is my initial review. It may change over time and if it does I will post right away.

Monday, December 05, 2011

Christmas shopping

I enjoy making Christmas fun for the kids and I tend to go overboard when Christmas shopping. I took the babies to Toys R Us for Black Friday shopping and it was completely crazy!!

Each of the babies were each others Santa and were not exactly allowed to pick out anything for themselves. They were supposed to only pick things for eachother. It was interesting and I cant exactly say that my plan worked out perfectly.

We got a bunch of things that we could play as a group, mostly because I do not like spoiled or selfish children and my son has some of those tendencies due to the influence of others. I have been teaching him the importance of sharing and respecting others and he has been making a lot of progress.

I got a cute little Selena Gomez guitar for my little lady and hopefully she will be able to seriously pick that up. Music is very important and its always wonderful when a child can play and instrument. I grew up learning quite a few when I was a kid, like the piano and the flute.

By the time we left the store our cart was overflown. I am hoping no one buys them any more toys for Christmas and picks up clothes or shoes... :)
They have more than enough.

Sunday, December 04, 2011

Juicers

I am in the market for a new juicer and have done tons of research on all the different and new kind out there.

For the longest time centrifugal juicers have been the most popular, but now they are becoming obsolete. The way that they work tends to produce an inferior juice when compared to the masticating slow juicers.

I was originally going to purchase one of the Breville juicers, the cheapest one being a good $150. I have since decided against it.

Being the person I am, I have also decided against purchasing a slow juicer seeing that it would cost me about $350, since I had my eye on the Omega Vert.

I chose the hamilton beach stainless steel big mouth juicer. It is sold at walmart and where I live now there are not as many walmarts as I would like.

The website said that it was in stock in a store near by so I went on a hunt.

I went to three different stores looking for that particular juicer or at least one that was good enough. Sadly the entire trip was a complete fail. I left with nothing and decided to just go ahead and purchase from the website.

I chose a cheaper juicer mostly because I have previously owned a Juiceman and had no issues with it. It worked well until I dropped it off the counter and broke the top and the latch... But as far as quality there is a difference between the cheaper and more expensive juicers. However, whats the point it they both produce the same lower quality of juice.

The centrifugal juicers are good for hard fruits and veggies like carrots, celery, and apples, which will be the majority of what I will be juicing. Therefore I am not completely worried about it at this time.

I will eventually pick up a slow juicer but right now its going into my wishlist.

Friday, December 02, 2011

Health Talk - Juicing, Cleansing, and our Daily Diet


I enjoy cleansing and I like to try and make sure to do them regularly. When done correctly they make a world of difference in the way you feel overall.

I try to do the master cleanse at least once each year. I also do psyllium & benotnite cleanses every now and then. 

Since my last juicer broke I haven't been keeping up with juicing, but I also really like doing juice fasts every now and then.

I want to pick up a new juicer soon so that I can pick that back up again.

Cleansing is awesome.

Juicing is very interesting and healthy for you. It allows you to be able to take in all of the vitamins and nutrients that are in the fruits and vegetables, without all of the bulk and fiber. The thing is, that fiber is still necessary to keep things moving so you should still incorporate that into your diet.

When cleansing I have noticed that I feel completely different, during as well as after it is finished. Those of you who have tried it will know. I have been most successful with juice fasting, mostly because I like a variety. I have done the Master Cleanse and although it is great I do always have the cravings. Plus I tend to cheat and buy bottled lemon juice which you should not do!! Fresh lemons and limes are the only way to do it, as well as distilled water.

With the Babies I make it a point to keep fresh fruits in the house and they have vegetables with every single meal. Growing up the main focus has been the meat and starches in the meals my parents cooked. Now I try to switch it up and make the vegetables the focus or at least the majority of the plate is a vegetable.

I have cut down on the starches, yet keep pasta and whole wheat bread as part of our diets. 

As with meats, I love them far too much to cut them out completely. Therefore, I am by no means a vegan, nor do I want to be.

Eating healthy is very important and many people carry the stigma that kids do not like vegetables. This is a fallacy we need to let go of. Children will eat anything that tastes good and anything they see on a regular basis.

I do let them have candy, cookies and things of the like but that is not available to them all the time.

I hope you have found this helpful and everyone in your household is eating healthy!

Thursday, December 01, 2011

Intro

In this blog my goal is to post about life and my life living as a single mother of three. Hauls, meals, diets, advice, parenting issues, anything I feel like writing about, I will post here. I'm an open book. I enjoy speaking about things that pertain to everyday life and "normal people".


Its the first of the month!


So its the first of December and I am excited about everything that will be going on this month!

Christmas is going to be amazing. I went to toys r us for black Friday and did some serious damage. I had the babies each pick out presents for eachother. They couldn't grab anything for themselves and we left with an overflown cart.

It was a lot of fun & then we went home & wrapped them all in toy story gift wrap. They are stacked up waiting for the tree to be put up.

I want to take them to see the tree at the rockafeller center sometime this weekend. They just had the tree lighting event last night, with the Beiber. I wanted to go but I had other things going on. :(
I did get to witness the Obama drive-by. Talk about security! It was crazy. Streets blocked off all over Manhattan, even to pedestrians! I had to walk 2 streets over just to cross Park ave!

New years, I am really excited for. Times Square is always crazy so that's most likely where I will be!
The hair situation.

Right now I am in the middle of some mini twists which are taking forever. I started the other day and have been so busy yesterday and today that I'm still only half way done. Hopefully I will finish them by tomorrow night or so.

I am going to wear these until the end of the year. So a good 30 days.

For new years my style will be a pink & purple mowhawk!!
The color job that I did below..

It's going to look awesome and ill keep it till I'm tired of seeing it. After that I will probably put it up in my kinky twists.

I am excited about my 2012 challenges and am mentally preparing myself for success. I know that I am good for starting something and not completely following through, but I'm sure I can do it without any short cuts... Or maybe just a few? Lol

Here's a shot of the twists. I'm in Subway with a chicken, bacon, & ranch on honey oat and a caramel frappuccino waiting on me. Yum!

Gotta go!!


Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Color Adventures!!

I was on BHM reading up in the lace front section. I came across a post where this girl posted pics of her FAB custom made lace mowhawk piece. She lightened the ends and dyed it pink. It looked great on her!!

It has been a very long time since I've worn a mowhawk and I have been dying to bust out a crazy fab hairstyle for a while. I posted a video of my last hawk hairstyle.

Anyways, I had some hair left that I was unable to use. I bought a weft and a closure piece which was supposed to be custom made. But the Chinese vendor obviously forgot about it and when I inquired about it he sent me whatever they had in stock laying around. Of course I was pissed and was never able to use the pieces that were sent. If you would like to know the vendor just let me know. I will never use him again.

I am glad to have finally come up with a good use for these pieces. I hate letting expensive hair go to waste. I stopped by Sally's to grab the supplies needed to achieve the look I was going for.

This is what the weft looks like. I was supposed to be a deep wave but obviously its more in between and closer to being a body wave. I did wear this a few times as a ponytail and it did look really good.

 This is the closure. I was never able to use this piece.

 Here I measured out the powder and the developer. I just eyeballed the amounts. I used slightly more developer than the powder.

 Here it is mixed together. You want to form a paste, not too liquidy, but not too thick. It should be easy to spread onto the hair.

I sectioned the hair into pieces and basically painted the mixture onto it with plastic separating each section. I made the highlighted sections very chunky.
 I use plastic wrap to color the hair. I do not like tin foil and with the plastic you can actually see what you are doing. You can see if it has proccessed enough.

 Here is the closure after it was lightened. This was exactly what I was going for. Very nice highlights, even though it could have gone lighter. I didnt time how long it was left on and I applied heat to help the process.

 Here is the weft after it was lightened. you cant really see the color so...

 Here is a closer shot.

 I then applied the semi permanent, wrapped with plastic, and then applied heat.

 This pic isnt great but you get the idea. There are hot pink and purple streakes throughout the piece.

 This pic kind of gives you a better idea of what it looks like. I combed all the hair out here. Very frizzy, and getting ready to be conditioned.



I really like it, cant stop playing with it. I have been extremely bored with my hair and decided it was time to switch it up. I may not actually do this style for a few more weeks, but stay tuned. I will post when I do.




Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Hair Care Haul

I had a nice little hair project in mind and ran to Sally's to grab the things I needed. I got a jar of 30 volume cream developer and a packet of lightening bleach powder.

I also grabbed some Beyond the Zone Color Jamz in Bubble Head Pink and Not So Shy Violet. These are semi permanent hair colors. Basically rinsed. They are really vivid, bright colors.

I can't wait to see what the final style is going to look like!

I will post the process and pictures on the hair blog.

NaturalHair.MarleynaA.com


CCO and Drugstore haul

I grabbed 6 lipsticks.
M.A.C. Red, Purple Rite, Creme d'nude, Show Orchid
All Styled up, Neon Orange

Gloss Creme

Big Bounce shadow in The Cool Elite

Lip Glee in Slickery Pink

Shadow in Tete-A-Tint

Another shadow in Short Shorts

A Clinique gift set

A MAC perfume in Hue: Pinkaura

A NYC bronzer, 2 ELF lip flowers, and a hard candy glitter

Last but not least 3 Revlon lipstains in Gothic, Crave, and Instinct

I really like the Big Bounce shadow and will probably get more. I thought it was a paint pot but when I got home I freaked out until I tried it. It's really not bad at all.

The Revlon colorstains are really good. They go on the same color as the tube.








Challenges for 2012

Here are the challenges I am doing for the year 2012 in an attempt to air it from APL to MBL. MBL is my goal lenght and I am giving myself 16 months to grow and keep the 8" needed to make it there. Hopefully I will make it there in less time. Cross your fingers!

Protective styles challenge for the entire year of 2012

This is simply a hide your hair challenge. I plan to wear my hair in protective styles for the entire year. I am going to start the year off with a set of kinky twists that i will wear for at least 2 months. My aim is to wear them for till April. After that I will probably do sew ins or whatever for the rest of the year.

Crown & Glory challenge

This is what I am doing while in the kinky twists. My own modified version. Will update later.

Baggy challenge

When I am in between long term protective styles I am going to wear the ponytail baggy consistently. This keep the ends of my hair protected and moisturized.

Deep condiotioning challenge

When not in long term protective styles I plan to deep condition 2x a week. When I do this I notice my hair is in tip top condition.

APL, BSL, MBL challenges

Obviously. These are my goal length challenges. I'm giving myself till Apr to make full APL. Giving till Aug to make BSL. And finally giving till Feb 2013 to make past MBL with layers.

Vitamin challenge

Last but not least. My vitamin challenge. I am really bad with keeping up with taking my vits. But when I do I seriously notice a difference with my hair, my skin, and how I feel.

I want to start off with a 3 month vitamin challenge. It takes time to develop a habit, and 3 months should do it for me.

However, I do want to begin the vit challenge now along with a cleanse. So I am going to make the vit a 6 month challenge. I am going to make another post about that.

I will be checking in to report how each challenge is going on the 13th of each month... Because 13 is my favorite number.

The protective style challenge will be done in 3 month intervals, with progress pictures at the end of each interval. Jan 1, Apr 13, Jul 13, Oct 13, Dec 31.

If you are doing any challenges for 2012, I'd love to know and we could join eachother and be kind of like a support group. Make sure we follow through.

Rules

1. Check in each month to give updates.
2. Post progress pics at each interval.
3. Post measurements from root to tip and from crown at each interval.

Any slacking off will be punished!! Lol

Has my hair stopped growing??

After being in the hair game for so long, attempting to grow your hair to a certain length, you may come to a point where you feel your hair has "stopped growing".

This is actually very common. I have gone through this phase myself. I have noticed that it is common when you are between goals, such as SL - APL, or APL - BSL.

First thing I have to say is that, hair never just stops growing. There are other factors at play here.

There are 3 growth phases that each strand of hair goes through. The Anagen, Catagen, and the Telogen phases. Each phase marks a significant point in the growth cycle of the hair.

The Anagen phase is the growth phase. During this phase the hair grows at a rate around 1cm every 28 days, or 1/2" each month. During this phase each strand will grow from the scalp to whatever lenght it can. The lenght of time it takes to complete this phase is genetically predetermined and will be the determining factor to how long your hair can actually grow. This is the longest phase, lasting for years.

Now say your growth phase only lasts for 3 years. Your hair will grow under perfect conditions to about 18". On me this is a little more than MBL, I am 5'7". If you're shorter it will be longer and if you're taller it may be a bit shorter. For the majority of people the growth phase is much more than 3 years. You should be able to at least be able to make it to the hip, I would like to think.

The Catagen phase, lasts only a few weeks and is the point at which the hair stops growing.

Finally, the Telogen phase, is when the hair sheds and the follicle prepares for the development of a new hair. This phase lasts for a few months.

Each hair on the scalp follows this cycle at different points. There is never a point when all the hair on your head follows this cycle at the exact same time. If it did then every few years we would shed all of our hair at once, we would be bald for a few months, and then the hair would grow back...

Therefore, based on this the hair as a whole does seem like it never "stops" growing, in a perfect world. If you cut it, it will grow back. As long as its taken care of it will grow to whatever length you want.

If you reach a point in you hair growth journey where it seems as if the hair has "stopped" growing there are most likely other things at play.

You should look at your regimen and assess your strong and weak points. Have you reached SL and you are wearing your hair down a lot? Do you keep a satin scarf on at night? Are you deep conditioning at least weekly?

Has anything in your regimen changed? Have you recently began to take any medication that may be making your hair shed? Are you taking vitamins for growth and health? Have you been using heat regularly? Are you trimming too often?

There are so many questions one could ask. But basically if your hair has reached a goal and you can not seem to make it to the next maybe something you are doing is causing the ends to break off.

But then again it may not be so complicated. The texture of natural hair causes it to shrink up and it may seem much shorter than it really is. Have you been checking you hair too often to see if it has grown. A watched pot never boils you know..

Take a picture of your hair and wait 2-4 months to take another. Compare the pictures. Do you see a difference? It might not feel any different but you might just see a significant difference in either the lenght or fullness of the hair.

If you have not straightened you hair in a few months or so, maybe go ahead and pull out that ceramic flat iron. I'm sure you will see a difference if you have been taking great care of your hair.

This is why its good to keep a hair journal. If you keep pics of your progress there will be no question as to if your hair is growing or not. If you become frustrated, think its too much, or want to quit you can always take a look at where you started and how far you've come.

You can be you own inspiration to keep pushing forward. This is actually how this blog started out along with my fotki album. Link in the sidebar.

In summary, we have all been there. Don't let it get to you, because you can and will make your goal. Treat your hair like fine silk and it will grow. I hope this makes sense. I'm posting form the EVO so please ignore any typos..

HTH & HHG

Sunday, November 06, 2011

Goals for 2012

I realize that when I write down my goals I am much better at keeping them and achieving those goals. So I am going to list my hair goals for the year 2012 here. As well as what I plan to do to achieve those goals. I am going to write out what has worked in the past and how I am going to modify it now.

I am currently right at APL. My final goal will be MBL. I need 16" from root to tip to make it there and 22" from crown to be full MBL with no layers. Since I like layers I am going to aim for 18" from root to tip.

GOALS
Goal. Growth needed. Goal date.

1. Full APL. I need 2-3 more inches. April 2012.
2. BSL. I need a good 4". July/August 2012.
3. MBL. Need about 6-8". December 2012 - February 2013.

Persoanl Challenges to achieve goals
Protective styles challenge for the entire year of 2012.
Baggy challenge
Crown & Glory challenge
Deep condiotioning challenge
APL, BSL, MBL challenges
Vitamin challenge

What has worked in the past
Growth aids- vitamins, MN
Protective styles- ponytail baggy, sewins, twists, ect.
Frequent cowashing & deep conditioning

It may be a little ambicious(*sp) of me to try to grow 8" in 16 months or less. This means that I have no room for setbacks. No room for breakage, trims, slacking off... Lol If I want to try for less than the allotted time then I would have to incorporate growth aids into my regimen and stick with it.

My next post I will go into detail about my personal challenges and the steps I need to complete each challenge.

Stay tuned!

Overdue: Straightening my Natural Hair

I meant to post this but long since forgot all about it. But here are the pics of my hair after I blowdried and flat ironed it. I wore this for a good 2 weeks or so and washed it out 3 days ago.

To maintain, I kept the hair wrapped when not out. I put castor oil or my Chi Silk Infusion on it whenever it felt like it needed a moisture boost.

I have not worn my hair straight for a good 2 years, I think. I needed a pick me up. My hair is growing back out and growing well. I did a good trim while my hair was straight, because split ends irk the Hell out of me. But I am glad I did starighten it and the next time I do, I will try a brazillian keratin treatment.

I have heard about them for a while but because I just did a protein treatment I figured it would be protein overload and cause my hair to break.

After I shampooed out my hair I deep conditioned for 24 hrs with Lekair Cholesterol plus. And at the moment I have it in a ponytail baggy, contemplating my next hairstyle. I was actually inspired by a young lady on BHM and think I know what I am going to do next before I throw in my kinky twists.

Here are the pics. Taken the day I finished flat ironing.




2 Strand Twists for my Little Lady

I did my baby girls hair the other day and she loved it so I thought I would post a few pics here.

She most definitely loved the style and was smiling from ear to ear all day and shaking her hair.

These are not French braids. They are flat 2-Strand twists.




Monday, October 31, 2011

E.L.F. HAUL

So ELF had a little sale a few days ago. I'm all for a good sale, so I picked up a few things. I like ELF because they are extremely affordable and most of the products aren't half bad. I have a few ELF foundation brushes and have tried their lashes which are very good quality considering the price.

Everyone needs a little ELF in their kit.

I have not tried their makeup though, and when I saw this palette I had to at least try it. I have tried those palettes that we see everywhere that are not very good. People rave about them because of how pigmented they are and how many colors you get, but in reality they are extremely powdery and wear off very quickly.

I grabbed this one thinking, "hey, it couldn't be any worse."

I am very happy with this purchase. Many of the reviews say that quite a few of the shadows have no pay off and I swatched as many as I could trying to find one that looked like it would be crap. I have to say that I did not find one that was not good!

They all swatched very well and that Red! OMG! There is never a good red on these types of palettes but this one takes the cake! It's awesome! Vibrant and a true red!

I am very pleased so far.

I also grabbed a few lashes and some HD powder. I can honestly say I do not feel the difference between this and the MUFE HD powder.

All in all, I'm going to have to grab a few more things from ELF very soon and I hope you do too! This entire package came up to less than $30!!! You can't beat that!!

Now I need to decide what I really want from the Sephora friends and family sale... ;)
Suggestions??





Saturday, October 22, 2011

Getting ready for straight hair

I have decided to go ahead and straighten my hair. I have been wearing the ponytail baggy for the last week or so, in order to increase the moisture in the ends of my hair.

I realized that since I have not been as anal about my hair as before I was experiencing breakage way more than I would have liked. So I decided to nip it now than to let it continue.

If I would have done this sooner my hair would be a good 4" longer than it is now.

I have been wearing the baggy with castor oil, suave and aphogee conditioner in it. The baggy has helped a lot and my ends are much smoother and softer. However I was not at that place where my hair is in tip top condition.

I began my process with washing my hair with suave conditioner and rinsed very well. I towel dried my hair and applied the aphogee 2step protein treatment, and blow dried till crunchy. ;)

I then rinsed it all out and marveled at the feel of my hair.

It's been so long since I've done a protein treatment. My hair is greatful.

Finally, I slathered my hair with Silicone Mix conditioner and Queen Helen cholesterol conditioner.

Right now, my hair is under a plastic cap and satin scarf, deep conditioning. I will be back tomorrow to finish up with a blow dry & flat iron, as well as pics of course.

Stay tuned!



Friday, October 14, 2011

Another Hair Care Haul

Because I'm so obsessed with hair care & styling I went to 2 beauty supply stores and picked up a few more things.

I got a bunch of magnetic rollers in different sizes from small to large. As well as clips to hold them in place.

Grabed a shower cape and satin scarf, just because. Two large jars of hair gel to use for smoothing ponytails & wash & goes. Two more combs. The purple one I use when flatironing. It makes sure the hair comes out very smooth.

I then found a great set of tools used when coloring the hair, so I had to grab that. And some ApHogee reconstructor and 2 step protein treatment.

Finally I picked up some hair for my next few styles. Some Kanekalon Marley braid hair for kinky twists, as well as a drawstring ponytail by Outre.

All items are pictured below.





Monday, October 10, 2011

A quick update of my hair

Since chopping off my hair, about a year and a half ago, I have not been as aggressive with taking care of my hair as I have been in the past.

Its been about 20 months since the chop, which would yeild me a good 10" of new growth. I chopped it down to about 4" all over and if I would have had no breakage what so ever I would be at 14" which for me is a little longer than APL.

I just measured my hair and it ranges between 10-11" all over. I measure my hair from root to tip. Right now my hair is at APL with layers, with the shortest layer being chin length.

This means that I have lost about 3-4" due to breakage and trims. Which truthfully is not bad, I was expecting much more. :(

Over the past year or so I have been wearing sewins and curently I have been rocking my two strand twists over the past month or so.

My goal is to get back to MBL with layers.

14" will put me at BSL with layers and full APL.
22" will put me at full MBL, but since I prefer layers I will only need 16" all over.

Therefore, if I take care of my hair and avoid breakage as much as possible I will make my goal in a year give or take.

Let's see if I can do it.

I have a few pics of my current hairstyle on twitter. Its kind of a two strand twist mohawk. I really like it and will be redoing it in a few days because its a little old.

After this style I will probably be going back to my daily cowashes and ponytail baggy.

I will try to update more often.

Hair Care Haul - Marshalls

I made a trip to Marshalls to pick up a few things that I wanted but didn't necessarily need. Marshalls is a great place to shop because they have great products at low prices. Walking into the store I knew what I wanted to get but I cant seem to keep to my list because I always see other things that I want to get.

Here's what I got:

A Revlon Blow Dryer with attachments

A Jilbre 1 1/2" ceramic flat iron and a 1/2" Chi ceramic flat iron.


A few round brushes (Boar bristle of course) and a paddle brush.


As I was passing through the store I came across the kitchenware & glassware section where I grabbed a few more things.

I completely fell in love with theses platters that were on display.


This one looks like a flower petal. I love it!


I love the color on this one. Its so pretty!

 

And this one. The pictures do not do it justice. Its a sparkly bronze, gold and silver. Very beautiful.


All and all I had a great shopping trip which did not break the bank. If I were to buy any of these items at their original retail value they would just about equal the cost of what I paid total for everything.

Monday, August 08, 2011

Caring for a childs slightly relaxed hair


Since relaxing my baby girls hair it has been much easier to take care of.

However there are a few rules you must not neglect because even with the relaxer her hair is still very textured. Here is a list of do's & dont's when dealing with my lady's hair.


Dont's

Do not shampoo the hair more than once every week or 2. Shampooing the hair too much will strip all the moisture. Being that the hair is relaxed it is already dry and needs as much added moisture as possible.

Do not comb, brush, or style the hair while dry. Relaxed hair is damaged no matter how you look at it and how well you take care of it. Because the hair is still very textured it will break very easily and adding a little water & conditioner will give it the slip it needs in order to prevent further damage when combing.

Do not wash the hair without deep conditioning. This gives the hair the moisture and srength it needs to prevent damage and breakage.

Do not use a regular bristle brush to style the hair, especially on the edges. These brushes are harsh and damaging.

Do not expect the comb or brush to glide through the hair just because it is relaxed.

Do not force the comb through the hair or rip hair out.

Do not use regular ponytail holders or rubberbands to hold the hair.


Do's


If the hair needs to be washed, Do use a light conditioner like Suave or Vo5 to wash. This way you can style and clean the hair as needed without stripping moisture.

Do use a Denman D4 brush or similar to style the hair. These brushes are not harsh and are very good at detangling when used properly. These can be found a sallys and there are cheaper versions by Goody and Conair which do the same.

Do comb or brush from the ends up to the roots.

Do keep the hair tied up with a satin/silk scarf at night to protect the hair  from breakage & drying out from cotton pillowcases. Or sleep on satin pillowcases.

Do protect the ends by keeping the hair braided or twisted. Relaxed hair breaks very easily and protective styles such as braids, twists, and buns help to keep the ends intact.

Do use a wide tooth comb to detangle the hair.

Do use Knee Highs cut up as ponytail holders. These are the only holders that do not rip out hair or cause breakage.


Products Used

I like to keep it simple when it comes to my lady's hair. I myself do not use very expensive products and i have found that her hair has done well with very minimal product use.

I use Suave or Vo5 conditioners to wash the hair. I hardly use shampoos because it dries her hair out severely. I deep condition with Motions CPR and Lekairs Cholesterol or Queen Helens cholesterol.

I use Creme of Nature shampoos because they are not as harsh. Shampoos from companies like Pantene are very bad for dry hair. You want a shampoo that does not contail sodium lauryl/laureth sulfates. These products strip the hair very badly.

I use the Suave or Vo5 conditioners as a leave in or Olive oil Moisturizer. My lady's hair has responded very well to using the conditioners as a leave in and i have done so since she was a baby. The cheap condtioners help with detangling the hair and keep moisture in.

When she wears braids sometimes its a little tight which may cause her scalp to itch. I use Extra Virgin Olive Oil on her scalp and hair to help seal in the moisture on wet hair.

I like to keep my lady's hair in french braids or singles with barrettes and knockers. Very pretty and she loves lots of color. She is very girly and a complete diva. She likes to look good and loves to learn about caring for her own hair.

If you would lke to learn more about detangling natural or semi-natural/relaxed/texturized hair i do have a video on my youtube channel called detangling natural hair. The process should not take as much time on texturized/relaxed but doing it this way will reduce or eliminate any breakage that may occur.

I do hope you find this helpful. Natural hair is very different and takes much more time and effort to care for than other textures.


Sunday, July 31, 2011

Relaxing

Me and my daughter have both been contemplating on relaxing our hair for the longest time.

I told myself a few years ago that if I still want to relax after a year passes then I will take the plunge. But if it was just an itch that I may regret later it will pass and after the year is up I will no longer want to relax. Well its been more like 2.5 years... and the itch is still there.

My daughter on the other hand, I love her texture, but I have to admit that it is quite a challenge getting her hair done. We have not had as much free time as we would like to have in order to keep up with our hair the way it should be taken care of.

I asked my lady and explained to her very carefully about relaxing her hair. She said yes. She is very smart being only 6 years old and she definetly knows what she wants.

I did hers first.

Now, when I say relax, I do not mean Straight.. I am relaxing to reduce the amount of shrinkage and lossen the curl only. I am keeping as much texture as possible but leaving the possability for her to wear curls, straight styles, and also for her to be able to do her own hair.

She is a beauty fanatic like myself and loves to do hair. She knows how to braid and twist at her age, which is fascinating because I myself did not teach her! She learned all on her own.

The process we went through was a little tedious but the results were beautiful and exactly what I hoped for.

I started by applying conditioner to her hair and let it sit for a while.

I separated her hair into 3 sections and started with the back. I applied a lye relaxer by optimum to the back section and completely covered every strand while smoothing lightly. I left the relaxer on for less than 5 minutes before rinsing the section clean. I shampooed twice and applied deep conditioner and tied that section out of the way.

I did the same process for each section and shampooed her entire head a few more times. Deep conditioned again leaving in overnight. Rinsed out in the morning and applied leave in conditioner braided her ends up and put it in a bun.

She absolutely LOVES her hair like this!!

She has been shaking her curls and combing her hair like crazy...

It hangs now and she likes that it layes on her back instead of shrinking up.

Here is a pic of her natural texture.


This is the very back section stretched to show the crazy amount of shrinkage she naturally has.



This is the back section after it has been relaxed. As I said I did it one section at a time.



I didnt get a pic of her entire head relaxed but will post that as soon as I rinse the conditioner that she currently has in out.

Her ends are a little thin and I did give her a nice trim. After the relaxer her hair actually resembles my hair. Its so soft and so much easier to comb. It used to take me hours just to get through and detangle her hair now it takes minutes.


Here is what it looks like today. A very simple style. If these twists were done on her hair before the relaxer they would have shriveled up into nothing!
 


 
 
There are no straight pieces and I did a treatment with Motions CPR to give her a little protein. Her texture is very similar to what it was before, just less shrinkage which was our goal! The relaxer was left on for less time in last section on the top right. That section is a little more poofy so next time we will have to spend a little more time there.
 
Over all, I am happy with my decision and so is she. She still appears to be natural to others so it will be our little secret...

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