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Sunday, August 30, 2015

First Impressions: Creme of Nature with Argan Oil Moisturizing Milk Masque

Hello lovelies!

Today I am back with a product that I received in July's Curl Kit but I didn't get a chance to try it until recently. If you been following my transition ( and I know you have!), you know that I have mentioned how my new growth needs increasingly more moisture. My current mission has centered around finding super moisturizing products for my hair and let me tell you, this product definitely makes the cut!

Price: ~$6.99 for 11.4 oz +tax (from local BSS--I received mine from a Curl Kit I ordered)

Ingredients: Water (Water) (Eau), Glycerin, Dicetyldimonium Chloride, Cetearyl Alcohol, Parfum (Fragrance), Polyquaternium-37, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Cicaprylyl Carbonate, Mica, Cetrimonium Chloride, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Isopropyl Alcohol, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Argania Spinose Kernel Oil, Panthenol, Phenyl Trimethicone, Polysorbate 60, Dimethiconol, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil, Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil, Ceteareth-20, Tocopheryl Acetate, Sodium Acetate, Benzyl Benzoate, Diazolidinyl Urea, Methylisothiazolinone, Cl77891 (Titanium Dioxide), Cl19140 (Yellow 5), Cl 14700 (red 4), Cl 42090 (Blue 1)

Their claims (per the label): No Frizz, No Shrinkage, No Dryness! It's time to reclaim healthy curls with our Moisturizing Milk Masque, packed with repairing nutrients from Argan Oil and Argan Butter. This essential deep treatment is formulated for all curl types to strengthen, restore, and hydrate distressed hair, preventing damage.

*No: Sulfates, Parabens, Mineral Oil, Petrolatum*

**Perfect for: Deep Conditioning or Co-Washing**

I have to admit that I was excited to use this product because it says that it is for all curl types and transitioners. As someone who is 8 (almost 9 months) into their transition, I really wanted to see how beneficial this product would be for my hair. I used this product as a deep conditioner, immediately following my protein treatment with Komaza Protein Strengthener. I applied this to my hair in sections (to ensure that every part of my hair got the moisturizing goodness) and DCed with a heat cap for about an hour.

When I first opened the product, I couldn't believe how thick this conditioner is! It really is like a butter! I initially thought that with my hair and the thickness of this conditioner, I was going to run through that jar in a wash and a half. To my surprise, a little really went a long way! This conditioner spreads easily and my hair absorbs it with no problem. I can see one jar lasting me 4-5 washes (since I wash my hair weekly, about a month).

As far as smell goes, this product smells like any other Creme of Nature with Argan Oil product---kinda sweet, kinda medicinal. The smell doesn't bother me too much and it goes away once you rinse the product out of your hair. It may bother those who are sensitive to scents, however. If you look at the ingredients, you see that fragrance is pretty high up in the list (it's the 5th ingredient!!). This means that there is a scent and a lot of it. So for my scent sensitive've been warned!

Another potential red flag is that this product contains isopropyl alcohol and it's high in the ingredient listing (the 12th ingredient). Isopropyl alcohol can be found in holding hair sprays and can be drying to the hair. It seems counterintuitive to put a drying ingredient in a product that claims to moisturize hair and that alone can make you reconsider putting this product in your hair.

Ok but how did the product perform!?!

After I DCed for an hour (with heat) and rinsed my hair out, I was blown away by how soft my hair was, especially my new growth. My comb was able to glide through my hair with absolutely no problems. I also saw my new growth begin to curl up--which is my indicator that it is moisturized. To that end, the claim that this conditioner hydrates hair is absolutely, 100% true. My hair definitely got some moisture. As far as strengthening, I can really speak to that since I do a protein treatment prior to deep I know my hair is being strengthened but not by this product. Quickly glancing at the ingredient list, I don't see any ingredients that would suggest strengthening capabilities. For that reason alone, you should consider this product a moisturizing deep conditioner.

Finally, I have only used this product as a deep conditioner, not a co-wash. Going forward, I would only use this product as a deep conditioner. While I'm sure that it would be great as a co-wash, I prefer to use cheapie conditioners that I can run through and repurchase without putting a significant dent in my pocketbook. If I were to use this as a co-wash daily, I could see myself running through a jar a week, easily. Over time, that adds up!

Bottom Line: This is a solid moisturizing DC for those who are transitioning. It provides hair with the moisture that it needs and a little goes a long way. It is a great DC to add to your rotation! However, there are 2 red flags with the amount of fragrance added and the presence of a hair drying alcohol. These two ingredients alone may be enough for some to pass on this product.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

8 Months In and Miles To Go

Happy Thursday lovelies!!

I'm back with an update on my hair thus far. Last Wednesday, I removed my box braids and got to see my hair for the first time since June!! After washing my hair, giving it a much needed protein treatment, and deep conditioning it, I prepped my hair for a twist out that I rocked for about 5 days while I was home in VA for my birthday weekend. When I returned back to NC last night, my hair needed a wash in the worst way so that's how I spent my evening. Here's what I noticed:

* It takes A LOT more time to do my hair on wash days.

I'm finding that I have to do everything in sections. I have to wash my hair in sections, apply my protein treatment in sections, apply my deep conditioner in sections, and detangle and add my moisturizer in sections! I understand why I have to do this. I have a lot of new growth happening and if I didn't section my hair, it would make for a very frustrating wash day. I'm also finding that sectioning my hair is the only way I can ensure that my hair (both the new growth and the relaxed portions) are getting what they need.

* My new growth needs moisture more than my relaxed hair ever did*

I found out pretty late in the game that my relaxed hair needed equal amounts of protein and moisture...I couldn't venture too far in either direction. Now, however, I'm finding that my new growth drinks in moisture! I still use protein (primarily to strengthen the infamous line of demarcation) and I'm finding that the addition of protein allows my new growth to better accept the moisture that I am giving it. My once properly moisturized, my new growth curls with delight and that's how I know my hair is loving what I am doing to it.

* Oyin products may become a staple for my hair*

I've been using Oyin Hair Dew, Greg Juice, and Burnt Sugar Pomade for awhile now. Recently, I have added the Whipped Pudding to the list. Last night, I detangled my hair using Greg Juice, followed up by adding Hair Dew and Whipped Pudding, then sealed by using a tiny bit of Burnt Sugar Pomade. This combination is the best thing ever as far as my hair is concerned. Moisture like what!! I think these products may be staples for awhile.

* Not trying to keep my hair straight= somewhat easy transition*

Years ago, when I first called myself transitioning, I still was trying to maintain a straight style. As a result, I was constantly blow drying and flat ironing as a way of blending my 2 textures. My hair wasn't having it. It was constantly reverting and I was constantly flat ironing it straight. It was frustrating and one day I figured that since I was trying to keep my hair straight, it would be more beneficial to just relax. Which I did. This go round, I am not trying to make my hair do anything that it does not want to do. Meaning, I am not straightening it. I have no desire to right now. When I want to wear my hair out, I know how to do a great bantu knot out or twist out that looks good but blends the 2 textures as well. When I take out styling stress, it make it that much more easier for me to focus on the actual care of my hair. If it were up to me, this tidbit of info would be one of my top 5 tips to transitioners. Work with your hair and not against it.

School will be back in session soon and I'll probably be wigging it up for awhile. The first few weeks of school are so hectic that I just need an easy breezy style until I get back in the swing of things. I'm thinking that wigging will take me through month 9 (maybe even month 10). My wig of choice is Tammy and I probably won't break out a curlier wig (Outre Ulla) until December of so).

Also, last Thursday (August 6th) was my 30th birthday!! While I spent the day reflecting on all the progress that I made mentally, emotionally, and career wise during that decade known as my 20s, one of my friends brought up the incredible hair journey I went on as well. I was 22 when I started taking the steps necessary to care for my hair and I have entered my 30s with a wealth of knowledge of all the practices needed for me to have a healthy head of (relaxed) hair. Now I begin the new decade of my life learning to care for my natural hair after 18 years of relaxing (first relaxer was at age 12). It's gonna be an interesting journey but I am so ready for it! I leave you with a collage of my hair from age 20 to's crazy to see where I started from!