3 Lessons that I learned about Natural Hair

Going natural can be very scary.  You wonder “Will my hair be unmanageable?”  “Will I know how to take care of it?”  If you have ever found yourself saying “Natural hair is not for me, I don’t have “good” hair like so and so,” then you are exactly who I am talking to.  I have said and thought all of those things but here I am 6.5 years natural and I feel like I could never go back to the creamy crack.

I started my natural journey on accident but during this journey I have discovered that our hair in it’s natural state is exactly what God gave us.  When we take time out to take care of our hair we will see the beauty that we are blessed with.

 

Here are the 3 things that I learned in the last 6.5 years.

 

Natural hair is like learning a new craft.

Every craft takes hours upon hours of practice to really get the hang of it.  It has taken me 6 years of buns and ponytails before I took down my bun and took the time to discover what my hair likes and needs.  You will have to try different shampoos, conditioners, leave in conditioners, oils, deep conditioners, drying processes and styles before you get in the groove.  Thank God for Youtube and the Natural Hair Divas who have taught me many things.  I still have a ways to go but I can say with much honesty that I finally understand the blessing of natural hair.  I finally understand the beauty of my curls, coils and naps.

 

Take Time to Learn and Love your Hair

I wasted a lot of time comparing my hair to other people’s hair.  I spent way too many hours wishing my hair was more “wash n go.”  Wishing my hair was 3C, low porosity and shiny, and bouncy with no frizz.  Im just being real when I say that I thought I had “bad” hair.  I had many people who would tell me the opposite but I was convinced otherwise.  When you are programmed to think that the curly new growth is nappy you fear that your hair will just be nappy.  Once you get those dead over-processed ends cut off you can really start to deprogram your brain from all that you have been taught.  The self hatred that has been passed from person to person for generations.  The truth is that God made no mistakes.  Even though ethnic hair can be a lot of work, it is beautiful, and with time can be less work.

 

Wash and Condition OFTEN

I had learned to fear water.  Water made your hair nappy right?  WRONG!!!  Our hair is like our bodies.  It needs water, it loves water.  Unless you are wearing your hair blow dried and or flat ironed most of us can benefit from wetting our hair daily.  I was also scared of shampoo.  For years I co-washed only.  The product build up made my hair constantly dull and my curls were frizzy.  I now realize that there is a balance.  Everyone’s hair is different but for my hair personally I try to wet it daily, wash once or twice per week and deep condition once per week.  The change that I have seen in my hair has been amazing.  I went from hating my hair to loving it.  When my hair is clean, moisturized and balanced it isn’t frizzy, the curls are defined, shiny, and bouncy.

 

I really hope that I can encourage someone out there who is on the fence about whether they should stop getting relaxers or not.  Im not saying that there is anything wrong with getting relaxer if that is your personal decision.  I am saying that there is a real freedom and beauty in learning to love your hair in its natural state.  There is a flexibility in being able to wear your hair curly or straight.  Don’t let fear stop you!

 

Favorite Hair Product of the Month-Shea Moisture Yucca and Plantain Conditioner

 

Shea Moisture is by far my favorite company right now.  I love that they wont compromise and put toxic ingredients in their products but my hair really loves their products.  I have used an entire bottle of the Shea Moisture Yucca and Plantain Anti-Breakage Strengthening Conditioner because I love it.  It gives my hair strength without leaving it dry and frizzy.  It also makes it soft and mangeable.

 

Checkout my video review of this conditioner.

Homeschooling Update-Lesson Planning, Socializing, and Field Trips

 

I have learned quite a bit since January.  It takes awhile to figure out which curriculum works best for your child, what schedule works best for your child, and what social programs work best for your child.  I am still experimenting daily but I have settled in to using mostly Easy Peasy www.allinonehomeschool.com  This website is easy to use and includes the curriculum for: Reading, English, Math, History, Science, and Bible.  It even includes some extra curriculum like foreign language.  I have found that it is about a year advanced compared to what my son was used to in his school system.  When I had him using the 5th grade curriculum it was the same as the 6th grade work that my daughter was learning in middle school.  I moved back to the 4th grade curriculum and it is more on track with the 5th grade in my area.  The math is a little bit too easy for him so Im still working on finding the right balance in his math.

 

I have been supplementing with these websites

www.funenglishgames.com

www.k12reader.com

www.spanish-games.net

www.hoffmanacademy.com

 

I have also been using these Youtube pages

Keith Hughes

Crash Course

 

I have been using this app for bible study/devotional

YouVersion

I highly recommend that you find a homeschool group to join in your area.  It is great for support, for learning about different curriculum and opportunities, for socializing, and field trips.

HSLDA website has a listing of some of the groups across the nation but I also recommend searching on Facebook.  There is a support group for most curriculums as well.  There is one for Easy Peasy and one for Easy Peasy for Special Learners.

 

Checkout the video footage here

I am Not Alone Kari Jobe Cover by Jauwan

This song has reached me in some of my darkest hours.  The words “When Im standing in the fire, I will not be overcome” explains how it feels to be surrounded by your problems but still having a peace in your spirit knowing that God is with us always and will not let us be destroyed.  It paints a picture of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego in the fiery furnace not getting burned but dancing freely.  Daniel 3:16.  I hope that this song ministers to you and reminds you that God loves us more than we can imagine and wants the best for us.

 

Shea Moisture-A Company Dedicated to Safe and Uncompromising Beauty

 

Last week I wrote a blog and filmed a video titled 4 Beauty Ingredients that are Making us Sick.  This week I wanted to provide you with a solution.  Im not one for stirring up the problem but I am all for finding a solution.  I found a few companies that are uncompromising, non toxic, and AFFORDABLE!  This week I briefly go over Shea Moisture Facial Collections so that you can decide which one is right for you.

 

 

I took a poll recently the biggest skincare concern is Dryness.  A lot of our skin issues can come from our diet and dryness is one of those that is also a sign of dehydration.  Our skin is also an organ and will either over produce oil when dehydrated to overcompensate when dehydrated.  HOWEVER there are things that we can do externally that will drastically help with the tightness of dry skin.  The Raw Shea Butter Line is an awesome choice.

 

Discoloration is also a big concern that I treated often when I was working in the spa as an Esthetician.  Whether it was from acne scarring, or sun damage there were men and women who wanted their skin to return to an even tone.  When treating uneven skin tone it is very important to not only treat the spots that are already there but to also use precautions to prevent future spots.  SPF is crucial to this and must be worn daily.  The Coconut and Hibiscus Collection is the perfect collection for this.

 

Acne was the 2nd most common concern that I treated in the spa.  Acne is a little more difficult to treat without seeing the skin.  It could be hormonal, cystic acne, product sensitivity, or other internal reasons.  Some acne needs a dermatologist who can write a specific prescription but other types of acne can be treated at home.  Hormonal acne can be treated at home or by getting a professional facial.  African Black Soap is awesome for cleansing the skin but keeping the balance.  You want to be careful not to over cleanse acneic/oily skin because the skin will adapt and over produce oil and you will end up worse than you began.  The Shea Moisture African Black Soap Collection is a great place to start.

 

Sensitive skin is skin that is reactive to certain ingredients.  Sensitive skin has a large range where some skin is very sensitive to a large number of ingredients and fragrances and other people are only sensitive to a few ingredients and fragrances.  I believe that a lot of the sensitivity comes from the toxic ingredients that are added to some of the products out there.  The great thing about Shea Moisture is that people with sensitive skin can possibly get away with using all of the collections but there is a line that is made specially for sensitive skin.  Rose oil is naturally calming and I used it quite often in facials for those with sensitive skin.  The Shea Moisture Peace Rose Oil line only has 3 items but are sufficient for a good cleansing regimen.

 

Fine Lines and Wrinkles and aging skin is one of my concern.  I naively thought I wouldnt have this concern but the environment takes a toll on our skin and as we age it begins to show.  As the skin ages it decreases in the natural oil production and dry skin speeds up the wrinkles and sagging.  It is very important to keep mature skin balanced with great moisture and vitamins.  The Superfruit Mulitivitamin Renewal Creme Collection focuses on just that.

 

This line isn’t listed under their collections but it has the 3 main items for skincare.  The 100% Virgin Coconut Oil line is great for all skin types and is a gentle and hydrating system.


 

Checkout all of their products on Amazon as well

 

If you are more of a video person checkout my video where I am going over each Collection.   I pray that I am able to help you in whatever your skincare journey is.  Please feel free to leave any questions that you may have in the comments.

 

4 Beauty Ingredients that are making us sick!

No one can deny that Cancer is on the rise and is taking many of our loved ones daily.  I don’t think that there is 1 person that I know personally who hasn’t been affected by cancer in some way.  There is also a rise is allergies and sickness.  In my quest to do better and put less chemicals in my body I am learning a lot.  These ingredients can be up for debate but I would rather be safe than sorry.

 

There is a debate as to whether or not it is proven that paragons cause Cancer but anything that disrupts your endocrine system and mimics hormones are very likely to cause cancer or other sicknesses.  Even though the studies are not conclusive it is a great idea to stay away from using products that use the paragons.  Paragons are great at preserving a product but it is just my opinion that some things were not meant to be preserved and it only causes us to consume something that is not healthy for our bodies.

 

The natural hair community is split on whether sulfates are bad for your hair or not.  Many of us when we were transitioning or had newly begun our natural journey were told that we should avoid sulfates altogether.  WE should avoid shampoos that produces suds because it can be damaging to our tresses.  However after some research I have learned that Sodium Laurel Sulfate (SLS, SLES) emits toxic fumes when heated, is a skin irritant and its a penetration enhancer meaning that if other toxic chemicals are in the product it causes them to penetrate easier.  It also pollutes the water and is undetected by many drinking water filters.

 

Studies have found that these chemicals may affect hormones and moreso in boys.  It is believed to decrease the amount of testosterone in boys.  It can be passed from mother to fetus during pregnancy and the affects will be seen later on with the boys.

 

This is a very familiar preservative.  Johnson and Johnson recently announced that they are removing it from their baby products but many companies are still using formaldehyde producers.  They are easier to hide in the ingredient list but cause the same effects.  Formadehyde is listed in EPA as a “probable carcinogen”  It is toxic when inhaled and also a known skin sensitizer.

 

There are many many more toxic chemicals that we are exposed to daily.  Some may argue that these studies aren’t proven but no one can argue that Cancer is taking our family members, friends, and co workers at an alarming rate.  If we take little steps to make better conscious decisions about the products that we use or buy I believe we will see a decrease of Cancer in our lives.  Checkout the video that I made about these toxins.

 

Dollar Tree Spring Haul

I love Dollar Tree for many reasons.  The first being that I love a great bargain.  I make sure to get to Dollar Tree when they switch seasons/holidays so that I can stock up on their decor/decorations.  I didn’t find a huge amount this time because there was Saint Patricks decor as well but I think I did alright.  I bought some flowers to make a nice faux floral arrangement for my porch, a map for my homeschool, a selfie stick, and some other decor!  Dollar Tree items are all $1 or less.  They are decent quality for that price but I understand that they are cheap and not the strongest when I shop there.  Other great finds are some of the cleaning items, dishes, school supplies, art supplies, and party items.  Checkout my video where I give you a rundown of what I found there.

DIY Ring Light (Cost less than $25)

I have been wanting a Ring Light for awhile now and I just thought that I would just have to wait until it was in the budget.

This is the cheapest one that I found on Amazon.


Then I saw a video on Youtube featuring Shameless Maya where they showed how to make your own for cheap.  I was too impatient to wait to order all of the parts from Amazon so I didn’t end up doing their version but it sparked a desire to make my own.  I started searching Youtube and found that there were more than a dozen videos on how to make your own Ring Light for under #30.  I found all of the parts at my local Walmart and went for it.  The links below are through Amazon and may cost a bit more.  Crafting isn’t really my gift but I do love a good copycat project that will allow me to save money.

So the items that I purchased for this project were:

All of these items were at Walmart and cost me just under $25! Woohoo!  Im a sucker for a bargain!  It only took me around 30 minutes to make this light and saved me so much $$$.

Checkout my video where I show you step by step how I made it.

Wash Day Chronicles featuring Hot Head Conditioning Cap

 

Wash Day can be a full day event for naturally curly girls.  I don’t have time for an all day event so I am always looking for ways to be more efficient.  My wash day routine consists of Washing, Conditioning and Detangling and Deep Condition followed by my style of choice.  I will do a video soon of my Wash and Go technique.  Wash and Go is my go to style because it is easy.  It is not the best during the winter but if you are going to be inside for a few hours it works well.

  • I start my process with just water.  Make sure your hair is fully hydrated and ready to soak in the product.  If you are using a Clarifying Shampoo it will need plenty of water to soap up and cleanse well.  You really should follow up with a moisturizing shampoo but for sake of time and pure laziness I make sure that my conditioner is extra moisturizing and I deep condition EVERY Wash Day.  Depending on your hairs needs as well as your level of damage you can deep condition weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly.  My hair really needs a good dose of vitamins and goodness weekly.  I am currently using Mizani True Textures Shampoo but there are many great shampoos out there.  I use Shea Moisture Shampoo as well and I like to switch it up every couple of weeks for maximum results.

 

  • Next I apply my conditioner of choice very liberally.  I start sectioning my hair and detangle each section.  This ensures that I get the conditioner everywhere and it takes advantage of the slip of the conditioner.  This day I am using Shea Moisture Yucca And Plantain Anti Breakage Conditioner.  I let that sit in my hair uncovered while I continue with my shower and wash my body.  The steam of the shower really helps that conditioner get into the hair.  I rinse that conditioner out completely then I finish the process of deep conditioning after I get dressed.
  • Then I apply a deep conditioner and let it sit for 30 minutes or more before rinsing with cool water and styling.

There are many different recipes for a deep conditioner.  Here is my tips on great ingredients for a deep conditioner that you have right in your kitchen (or can purchase for cheap)

 

 

You can download a copy here.

 

Recipe used in the video is:

1 Ripe Avocado

1 Tablespoon Raw Unfiltered Honey

1/8 cup Aloe Juice (Can substitute 1/8 of Aloe Vera Gel from the plant)

 

For the deep conditioning process. I separate my hair into sections and apply generously.  I like to detangle again to verify that the product is getting evenly applied and I twist each section.  If my hair gets dry I re-wet it.  Wet hair absorbs product much better because the follicles are still open.  I place my hair in a conditioning cap or shower cap (whatever I have available) but I received the Hot Head Conditioning Cap in exchange for my HONEST review.

 

Details about this cap:

There are 2 sizes Hot Head (adult) Starting circumference, approximately 21″ Max circumference (fully stretched), approximately 34” Diameter, approximately 20”

and  Starting circumference, approximately 17″ Max circumference (fully stretched), approximately 30” Diameter, approximately 18”

 

and Little Hot Head (kid) Starting circumference, approximately 17″ Max circumference (fully stretched), approximately 30” Diameter, approximately 18”

It is made with 100% Cotton Materials, FlaxSeed and TLC

 

Here are the directions from the website.

 

HOW TO USE

DEEP CONDITIONING YOUR HAIR WITH HEAT IN 3 EASY STEPS:

Step 1: Wash hair, then gently towel dry to prevent dripping. Apply hair treatment of choice. Follow with a plastic cap, completely covering the hair and hairline.

Step 2: Place Hot Head flat on a clean glass or ceramic plate. Heat in 1000 watt microwave with elastic facing up for 30-45sec. Power level must be lowered accordingly for higher wattage microwaves! Refer to owner manual to find out how. Remove, flip inside out and shake up heat source. Replace elastic side up and heat for additional 30-45sec. Remove, flip inside out and shake up heat source once again. Replace elastic side up and heat for additional 30-45sec once again. If additional heat is desired proceed in 10-20sec increments, following the above flipping and shaking method, until desired heat level is achieved. Do not exceed a combined total of 3min, from start to finish.

Step 3: Remove Hot Head completely at the conclusion of treatment. Allow hair to cool 5min before rinsing with cold water. Style as usual.

 

Buy Your Own Conditioning Heat Cap Here

 

Checkout my Wash Day Process Here

 

Skincare Routine and Giveaway

A Great Skincare Regimen will help us look younger and healthier.  I am an Esthetician and went to school for skincare.  A great skincare routine also includes a weekly masque and spf.   I am giving away a beginner set.  This set includes a Cleanser, Moisturizer and an Eye Cream.  This set is meant to be used in the morning and in the evening.  I suggest you use my DIY hair/facial masque once a week (Check my youtube channel for the recipe)  The Elf Skincare Starter Kit is great for dry, normal or even oily skin.  The Super Sonic Washing Machine uses SuperSonic vibrations to clean deeply.  It quickly removes facial dirt and restores clear skin, promotes blood circulation, and increases absorption capacity to make your skin smooth. One Lucky Winner will win a SuperSonic Washing Machine and an Elf Skincare Kit.  Contest ends March 1,2017 at midnight.  Don’t forget to follow the rules and enter below!  Good Luck!!!

Enter to win an Elf Hydration Skincare Starter Kit and a Supersonic Washing Machine

Skincare Giveaway

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