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Wednesday, June 29, 2011

June 2011: 6 Month Update

Wow. The end of June is upon us and I cannot believe that 2011 is halfway over!!! Thus far, this year has been nothing short of amazing! Anyway, I just wanted to make a post that shows my progress from the beginning of the year to now.

This picture was taken in January following my first relaxer for the year and a trim.

I took this picture 2 weeks ago following my proposal defense. I was so excited to not have anything school related to do when I got home that I did my hair!

You know what? Now that I look at the pictures I see that I have made tremendous progress in 6 months. For awhile, I've felt like I haven't made the kind of progress I wanted to. However, now that I see the pictures from January until now, I see my hair is doing it's thing.

How is your progress going? How would you classify your progress in 6months?

Look of the Day (6/29/11): Banana Clip Bun

I told you guys yesterday that I would post pics of my banana clip bun and here they are as promised. There is one slight alteration though: I didn't leave any hair out. Trust me...I tried to but it looked jank so I wound up brushing my hair back lol.

I like banana clip buns because I have a nice full bun. Also, as I'm looking at the pictures I realize how much new growth I have (do you guys see all the 'waves' in my hair?).

Anyway, without further ado: the banana clip bun.

**Took these w/o the flash b/c I didn't want to blind you guys...or myself lol**

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Summer Bunnin'

...and that was my corny attempt at referencing the movie 'Grease' (one of my favorite musicals, by the way lol).

As you guys know, this is my first summer since the start of my hair journey where I have not used braids (extensions). At this point in the game, I feel that my hair is too long for braids w/ extensions...and I've seen what they do in those braiding shops. I've seen how they pull out scissors to make the style look neater :side eye: All I know is, if someone cuts my hair they're gonna get drop kicked.

Anyway, I've been doing the bunning thing for awhile and there has definitely been a learning curve. I've recently figured out that high buns are not for me :sad face: Trust me you guys. I've tried it so many times! However, my nape consistently says "eff yo' bun!' and decides to just be out while my edges say "You may have slicked us down but we ain't gonna stay that way." The end result of all of that? I look like a 5 year old who has been out playing all day. Being that I'll be 26 in August....I don't think that is a good look.

Today, I finally found use for the banana clips I had laying around in my bathroom (for some reason I have tons of hair toys laying around that I never use). What'd I use it for? A bun!!! So far I like it. It makes my bun look fuller and not so...meh. I also like that fact that with a banana clip breakage becomes less of an issue (as compared to using a hair tie). I'm being a wee bit creative though and I left a section (I guess you can call it a bang) out, braided it, and it shall be a braid out bang! I'll post pics tomorrow so yall can see what I did.

I will say that bunning has drastically simplified my regimen. Currently, I wash and deep condition at least once a week (sometimes more since I'm slowly easing my way back into the gym). I then air dry and put my hair into a bun. I use Shea Moisture products to moisturize, when needed. That's it. Easy as pie! It's definitely a good thing since I'm trying to hold back on my relaxer (currently 10 weeks post) until the weather cools down. I just don't see the point of relaxing my hair when I'm constantly gonna wear it up. We'll see how long that lasts though.

Well I've rambled enough for one night. I'll be back tomorrow with pics!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

"My Hair Isn't A Unicorn!!"

^^^ This is what I have been thinking more often than not as of late. On the hair boards I frequent, I find that we are all are in an insulated community. We are all striving for the same goals and are (more or less) engaging in healthy hair practices. However, I find that there is an abrupt shift from this in real life. In real life, I find that the "good hair" mentality is firmly entrenched in a lot of people. Well, at least the people that I have come into contact with. They take one look at my hair and say " If I had your kind of hair, I would do x,y,z" or " With your grade of hair you can do things like that" or any other comment that leaves me making the screw face.

Let me be real with yall. My hair isn't comprised of soft textured ringlets that can easily be straightened and never breaks. Nope. Not even a little a bit. My hair is coarse, tightly coiled, and I have a lot of it! My hair can also be a rebellious little such and such. However, I took the time to figure out what my hair craves (moisture, moisture, and did I forget to mention moisture?) and adopted a regimen that fits my hair ( No, I can't relax frequently and no, I definitely cannot use heat frequently). That's it. There's no magic to it...just common sense. It just frustrates me that in the AA community that this myth of good hair/bad hair still persists. What is even more saddening is that so many women think that healthy, long hair is beyond the realm of possibility.

What do yall think? Have you encountered anything like this?

I Have My Life Back!!

Before you begin...I know it has been a looooooong time since I posted. Well, I had my dissertation proposal on the 15th of this month so I kinda had to fall off the face of the Earth. The good news is that I got admitted to PhD candidacy (go me!) and I'm back to posting! :D

So let's begin shall we?

I want to talk about 2 things I have been trying lately. The first is Queen Helene's Garlic Shampoo.

I don't know if I ever mentioned this but hair sheds...a lot. It never really bothered me because I know that's what your hair is supposed to do but gee whiz I had a lot. I had heard about this shampoo before and when I spotted it at the BSS I had to pick it up and give it a shot. I paid about $6-$7 for it and so's a'ight lol.

The plus about this shampoo is that it is unscented so you don't go walking around smelling like a big ol' ball of garlic. However, a drawback is that it has ammonium lauryl sulfate as the second ingredient so it made my hair feel stripped and I had to follow up with a sulfate free moisturizing shampoo. As far as shedding goes, I'm not gonna lie to y'all and say it stopped my shedding---because it didn't. I will say that my shedding has decreased a little bit following this first usage but time will tell how effective it is.

I've also been trying One N Only Argan Oil which I :love:!

I paid $12 for this at my local BSS and it has been one of the best hair finds for me. Now I will say the name is kind of misleading. One N Only Argan Oil is mainly chock full of 'cones and not just 100% oil and oil alone. However, this product is amazing! I have used it for blow drying and flat ironing and found that it makes for a pretty good heat protectant. A little goes a long way with this product and my hair never feels weighed down with this product. I've also used it for air drying and I found that it goes a great job of keeping the frizzies at bay. Really, there isn't enough that I can say about this product. I just know that I love it and it is definitely staying in the rotation!

Friday, June 3, 2011

I am a Braidout Queen!!

...well not really lol

Happy Friday everyone! I can't believe I actually have free time to post something today (I have been incredibly busy-and stressed- trying to get this thesis proposal together)! Anyway, this past week I started doing braidouts. Why it took me so long to do them, I have no idea. All I know is, it dawned on me that my hair is actually long enough to do them. Check it out:

Pretty cool huh? That is actually the second braid out that I have done. The first one was quite tragic. I pretty much learned the hard way that really shouldn't mess with the braid out too much. Doesn't turn out good. Not at all. Once I figured that out, it has been smooth sailing. Braidouts are a low/lowered manipulation style. I just braid my hair at night and undo in the morning. No combing or anything!

Since I know you're dying to know what products I used and how I did it, I'm gonna go ahead and tell you.

1) I separate my hair into 6 sections.
2) To each section, I apply Shea Moisture Curl and Style Conditioning Milk (just enough to moisturize it but not enough to weigh my hair down).
3) I braid my hair so that I end up with 6 plaits.
4) Place stain rollers at the end so my ends aren't straight
5) Spray Shea Organics Hold and Shine Moisture Mist (just a little).

In the morning, I undo the plaits with a little bit of oil (I mainly place the oil on my ends) adjust my hair so that I can get a headband on and head out the door! Easy peasy! I haven't noticed any breakage (I'm guessing that's because I'm basically moisturizing and sealing every night) and it allows me to enjoy my hair!