I cut my hair! 

Hi guys,

It’s been a while! How y’all doing?

As you can see from the title of this post, I cut my hair! (Cue the gasping)

I have been so tired of my hair lately! Washing it, dealing with it on a daily basis, detangling it, styling it, the whole shebang! I’ve been super frustrated with my hair. And I think this is the major reason why I never really blog about my hair anymore.

I actually considered relaxing it quite a number of times.

Finally, I decided that maybe I should get a funky fade/haircut. Like this:

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Three Year Length Check

Hi guys,

So my hair turned 3 on the 18th of July! I honestly was planning on skipping the nappiversary/length check post but @kinkchic on Instagram left a comment on one of my posts talking about the nappiversary post so I just had to do it.

What were my goals from my two year nappiversary and how well did I do?

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I was featured on: African Naturalistas 

 
Hi y’all,

I’m super excited to let you know that I’ve been featured on African Naturalistas!

This is a blog that I’ve been reading since… since!

So I feel ‘appy, I feel fulfilled because I never experredit.(Just kidding)

So yeah, go check it out here.

Don’t forget to show some love!

X

DIY trim

My people, how far?

You know how I keep saying “oh my ends are shitty, I need a trim”? Guess who finally got one? 

I’m not even joking when I say my ends were horrendous. 

I had so many single strand knots and my ends looked so rough and frizzy. On one strand alone I could find as many as 3 knots and I was in the habit of pulling them off with my fingers. 

Detangling had become a serious chore no matter the conditioner because of all the tangles. Even separating twists for a twist out became harder because all my ends wanted to do was stay together.

When people talk about split ends they seem like such a modern myth to me but I kid you not when I say I used my two eyes to see several split ends in my hair! At this point I knew something had to be done fast. 

I knew I needed a trim for a long time, trust me. I mean, I haven’t had one since I went natural; that’s 2 years! 

The thing is, I wanted to get it professionally done so I kept postponing and postponing till I could go to a salon that knew what they were doing. 

One day, I thought to myself “wait oh, but people do this thing themselves e.g. Nafisat. How can I, self proclaimed cheapskate mama and DIY queen, not be able to do it myself”. 

So I googled how to do it myself, bought 70 Naira scissors, sat in front of the mirror and trimmed.

 

Not a good picture but peep those ends!

  

I’d take a small section, twist up to where I wanted to trim and then cut

  
  
 

All done!

  

My twists were so blunt by the end

    

Ends look and feel waaaay better!

   
 

My “OMG, my hair is shorter” face 😦

All the hair I cut off

  
In my two year nappiversary post, one of my goals was to get a trim and I’m glad I got one.

 I know I could have gotten better results because some parts aren’t even and I think I might have taken too much hair off but I think I did okay for a first attempt.

My experience with trimming:

Pros:

  • My hair is easier to detangle
  • Crappy ends are gone
  • Styles turn out better

Cons:

  • You might become scissor-happy 
  • Shorter hair (but it will grow back)

Lessons learnt: 

  • Eventhough a decision seems scary, take the leap if you know the pros will outweigh the cons.
  • Don’t delay a decision that will benefit you because of excuses that are surmountable. (See grammar! My English teachers must be proud of me.)

I did a bantu knot out for NITC 12(post coming soon) after trimming and it was so easy to take down and separate the bantu knots afterwards! I was pleasantly surprised!

    
Have you ever trimmed your hair yourself? Would you ever DIY trim or would you rather get it professionally done? Share with me.

X

Two year nappiversary!!

Two years!! Can you believe it? If my hair were a child, it’d be a toddler that could walk and talk! 

Remember the goals I mentioned in my one year nappiversary post that I planned to achieve by now? Let’s see how I did:
1. Kick dandruff’s ass. (Sadly, no)

2. Beat hand-in-hair syndrome. (Yes and no. It changed from hand-in-hair syndrome to hand-in-edges syndrome which is worse)

3. More length and thickness at my edges and nape. (Yes but not as much as I’d have liked due to my newly developed hand-in-edges syndrome)

4. Growth/Length retention. (Yes but not as much as I’d have liked)


I didn’t measure my hair in terms of inches but here are my length check pictures:
   

     

Not so bad ei? But not as good as I’d hoped but I have repented so… 
A couple of things I’ve learnt this past year:
  1.  Don’t let it frustrate you because frustration leads you to quitting! Let whatever you do fit into your regular routine and ability; don’t go all out and overwhelm yourself with stuff you can’t handle because the “gurus” say you should do it. E.g. if you can’t handle washing your hair weekly, don’t. Because if you do, you most probably will get frustrated and think of giving up.
  2. Don’t compare yourself with others and don’t be solely goal oriented! Have a little fun! Remember I talked about it in this post? If you want to dye your hair or straighten it or get a tapered cut, do your research and go for it! 
  3. Do what works for you! If it ain’t working, dump it(no matter how many rave reviews it has) and if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it (no matter how many bad reviews it has). In the end, you are the boss of you.
  4. Encourage yourself! Don’t always think of the negatives(e.g. What your hair can’t do); try to see the positives (e.g. What your hair can do).
  5. Learn and experiment! Don’t get stuck in your ways. Read blogs, watch vlogs. You will learn a lot; not all will work for you but you just might hit the jackpot with some. 
I don’t want it to turn it into an epistle so I’ll put a pin in it right there. 
If you follow me on Instagram (@nigerianandnatural) you would have seen most of these but here are a few (boring) styles I did over the last year: 
   

      

Not the same day as the previous picture. I just really like this shirt! LOL

    

Wig

      

Crochet braids

    

Kinky twists

           

Wool/yarn twists

 

And my latest style: 
 

Two week old twists. So proud of myself for keeping them for that long

 
Here are my goals for the year ahead:

  1. Get a trim and try to get trims when needed from now on.
  2. More protective styling.
  3. Growth and length retention.
  4. Stop hand-in-edges syndrome. 
  5. Kick dandruff’s ass (for real this time).
  6. Be more adventurous with:

  • Styling
  • Products
  • Techniques

    That’s all folks! 3rd nappiversary here we come! 

    What are some things you’ve learnt along the way in your hair journey? What are your short and long term goals for your hair? Please share.

    Oh and Eid Mubarak! I know this isn’t the ram-sharing sallah so I shall patiently await that one.

    Goals versus the experience

    Hey guys, 
    I just dropped by to share some of my thoughts with you very quickly.
    As I approach the 2 year mark (peep my countdown at the side/bottom of the page), one thing has been on my mind. Length! 
    A major feature in my thoughts is “is my hair long enough for 2 years? It should be longer than this at this stage”. 
    I’m going to share with you a quote from Okechukwu Ofili’s book, “How Stupidity Saved My Life: Life Lessons From An Overanalytical Engineer”

    Unfortunately, it seems that as we get older, we lose that focus on fun. Instead, we focus on graduating at the top in college, being the number one employee at work, or being the best speaker in a speech contest. While all these may be commendable goals to strive for, what is not commendable is allowing them to displace the pleasure and excitement of the experience… We can all choose to embrace life more fully by moving our focus away from winning and instead enjoy the moment.

    Let me summarize that quote in terms of hair: “Many of us are obsessed with and focused on length and hair goals and making our hair do things we see others do. We forget to enjoy the little successes and failures, the things our hair can do, the experience. We are so focused on other things that we forget to enjoy the moment”
    That’s why I will never understand people who ALWAYS have their hair in a protective style to protect their hair and gain length. Why bother when you can’t enjoy the hair you protect and the length you’ve gained because your hair is always covered up.
    I’m not innocent as I explained earlier. Many times I allow length to rule my thoughts and I look at my hair with disdain because it’s not as long as I want/expect. Thinking about it, my standard of length is based on other people’s hair. I forget that my hair is most probably different from theirs and that I am on my own journey. I forget to enjoy the experience. 
    This quote really made me think. It applies to so many things in life. 
    We let our goals, both self imposed and those imposed by society, cloud our minds so much that we forget about enjoying the moment, enjoying the experience, enjoying the journey, enjoying life.
    If you are like me and you are guilty of not enjoying the experience (whether it’s hair, work, school etc) for any reason at all, let’s all hold hands now and scream “I repent!!!!”.

    Threading take 1

    My beautiful people, I know you have missed me and I missed you too!

    Don’t think it’s you oh. It’s me. I’ve been so stressed lately. I was just off the radar on basically everything: Instagram, BBM etc. I feel like I might be going through a mini midlife crisis or maybe I’m just exaggerating. It happens.

    I kept planning to post but never actually posted. You know how life has a way of just getting in the way. (feeling like a literary giant)

    So yeah, threading. I’m not talking about eyebrows. I’m talking about threading your hair like the way we used to as kids. These days, people sometimes refer to it as “African threading”.

    Last washday, I decided “oh what the heck, I’ll give it a shot”. And I did.

     

     

    I used regular sewing thread because I’m yet to find the rubber one more commonly used for threading hair.

     

    I folded it in two and went to work on damp freshly washed hair right after moisturizing and sealing.

    I did this at night and did not take pictures. However I threaded a section of my hair in the picture below as an example.

      

    As you can see, the threaded section on the right is way way way more stretched than the twisted section on the left.

    I took down the threading when it was dry in the morning and put my hair in a puff. The ends looked a bit stringy so I combed lightly.

    And the result of my first time threading experiment was a mega puff!

       

     

    Alas it lasted not! Later the same day shrinkage be like…

       

    Possibly the shrinkage could have been avoided if I had not used products with humectants (ingredients that pull moisture into your hair e.g glycerine, propylene glycol) but I highly doubt I have any products without them.

    I had intended to maximize the stretched hair all week by avoiding water/products with water so it would not shrink but I got caught in the rain the very next day and my dreams of stretched hair were literally washed down the drain.

    Tips:

    • Avoid humectants so as to avoid shrinkage.
    • Avoid water/products with water to lengthen the time your hair stays stretched.
    • Make it firm but not tight (unless you like headaches and hate sleep).
    • Leave space in between as you thread.(As seen in the picture above where I threaded one section). You don’t have to wrap the entire hair in thread (like yarn/wool locs). This makes it easier to thread and helps it dry faster.
    • Make sure your hair is dry before taking down the threading. If not, it would all have basically been in vain.
    • Be careful while taking down the threading. You don’t want your hair getting tangled with the thread because the thread has nothing to lose if you have to resort to scissors while you have hair to lose.

    Overall thoughts:

    I think threading is a good and effective way of stretching your hair. It’s also a great way for those who can’t/don’t like to twist/braid to keep their hair stretched. 

    All in all, I would try it again if I can find a way to stop my hair from shrinking (if you have tips on this, please share). But for now, twists are much easier and quicker for me to install and take down even though they don’t give as much stretch as threading.

    Have you tried threading? Do you have tips? What do you think of threading and would you try it? Please share!

    I Was Featured On: The Curly Belle

     
    Hello my lovelies,
    I just dropped by to let you know that I’ve been featured on a natural hair blog, The Curly Belle.

    This is actually the first time I’ve been featured on any blog!
    So check it out here and please leave your many many comments. 

    I’m a bit under the weather so I left work early and I’m at home. Hope your day is going way better than mine. 

    Xoxo

    A typical wash day for me

     

    Hi guys,

    One thing I would say I miss about my non-existent hair routine before going natural was that I could use 30-60 minutes to wash my hair AND dry it. 

    Nowadays, that basically borders on impossible.

    I really like the feel of cold water on my scalp and the softness of freshly washed hair. If not for these I actually do not enjoy wash day because, without sugar-coating it, I am lazy and would much rather use my free time to do what lazy people do.

    In case you were ever wondering what I do on wash days, let me give you the low-down.

    1. Detangle:

     

    I sometimes shampoo before I detangle but these days I mostly detangle first. 

    If I’m shampooing first, I shampoo and then finger detangle my wet/damp hair in sections with my deep conditioner and twist each detangled section. After I’m done detangling and everything is in twists, I put on a shower cap for some time(deep condition).

    However, if I’m detangling first, I take my dry hair in sections, put conditioner in it (or spray with a mix of conditioner, water and/or apple cider vinegar as seen in the picture) then finger detangle, twist that section and move to another until everything is detangled and in twists.

     

    See how creepy my hand looks after detangling. 

    For now, I’m not sure which method I prefer but I’m leaning towards method 2 because it can be quite tasking to reach your scalp properly when shampooing loose hair like in method 1.

    2. Shampoo:

     

    I proceed to rinse my hair as best I can and shampoo it focusing on my scalp.

      

    3. Deep condition:

     

     

    I usually sit around and wait till my hair is damp before I deep condition (but that’s because most times, I don’t use a towel/t-shirt to blot excess water so I have to sit and drip till the hair becomes damp. If I have a towel/t-shirt, I blot out the excess water after shampooing and proceed to deep condition). I apply my deep conditioner of choice that day, put on my shower cap a.k.a nylon bag and go about my business for the next hour or more. Then I rinse it out.

     

    4. ACV rinse:

      

    After rinsing out the deep conditioner, I dilute apple cider vinegar with water and pour it over my hair making sure it gets everywhere. I wait a minute or two and then pour a bowl of plain water over my hair. Don’t ask me why I do this step because me sef I no know.

     

    Loosened one twist to look at my hair. Looks clean to me 

    5. Moisturize and seal:

      

    I sit around with my hair still in twists till it dries a bit.

    When it’s damp, I proceed to loosen a twist, apply Cantu and follow it up with cocoa butter(or Shea butter) focusing on my ends and then put it in a loose Bantu knot or flat twist so I can differentiate it from those I haven’t moisturized. I do this till I’m done with everything. I then loosen each Bantu knot or flat twist and put in back in a regular twist so I can have a twist out the next day. (Alternatively, I do a firm Bantu knot/flat twist after moisturizing each section so that I don’t have to loosen it after moisturizing).

     

    6. Put on my satin bonnet: 

    If it’s night by this time, I put on my bonnet and head to bed.

     

    I was pretending to yawn in the picture and ended up really yawning 

    And that’s wash day for me. 

    What do you do on wash day? Please share your routine.

    8 Common Hair Practices My Hair Just Can’t Handle!

    Read this post and thought to share with you guys. You do not need to do every method out there suggested by the “gurus”. Find what works for you and run with it.
    Here’s the comment I left on the post so you can see my own experience with trying to do everything I read on blogs: “May the good lord bless you for this post! Up till last 2 months I was still on the lighter oils bandwagon cos of my fine strands and I didn’t know why my hair was not retaining moisture. Now I have switched to Shea butter I can see and feel the difference! Also I was applying oils every single time I spritzed with water! And I hated the oily feeling. One day I decided to spray with water alone and massage it in and twist without the oil. The next day my hair did not dry out! I started wondering why I was using oils every blessed day to seal in the moisture. Now I can have soft hair that isn’t oily. Tea rinses leave my hair a hard tangled mess. When I did GHE my hair smelt like clothes they soaked for 2 days. Bottom line, not everything works for everyone so do you!”

    COILY HEAD OF HAIR

    Hey world! Goodness its been a long time since I have been here. To you all that have been awaiting new posts. My apologies. Life got the better of me and it aint gonna do it no more lol. I am sharing this 8 common hair practices my hair personally doesn’t roll with..so to speak. misc-jackie-chan-l

    8_common_practices_CHH

    8) The Green house effect method, A.K.A GHE method:

    A lot of naturals swear by this method for faster growth rate. I used to do this during my TWA days; well not for faster growth but to maintain moisture levels in my hair. Now when I GHE, the result is always this mushy hair with a kind of ‘’rain fell on relaxed hair’’ smell to it. That’s not something I want to constantly do to my hair.

    7) Co-washing:

    Yes. You read right. Conditioner-washing. That’s the best thing that ever happened to hair…

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