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

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!

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.

My Hair Stash (Feb 2015)

Salut, hello, howdy!

I am not a product junkie! I really am not. However I seem to have a lot of stuff for someone who basically uses mostly shampoo, conditioner, leave in and shea butter 95% of the time! I did not realize until I was taking pictures for this post that I had so much stuff that I don't use often! I had to dust some of them before taking pictures sef

IMG_9717 (Photo Cred: @thecreamycrackrehab on Instagram)

Without further ado,behold my stash

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CLEANSERS/SHAMPOOS

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-Bobeam shampoo bar in Shealoe (purchased from The Kinky Apothecary ). I have had it for over a year y'all)
-Dudu Osun- melted down and mixed with water and olive oil (Can be purchased from your local grocery/beauty store)

My staple: Dudu Osun

CONDITIONERS

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-Shea Moisture restorative conditioner (a gift from someone who went abroad but can be purchased on The Kinky Apothecary as well as Olori)
-V05 herbal escapes conditioner (purchased at NITC but can be bought at many local grocery/beauty stores. I mostly buy it at Bruno's Place opposite Silverbird at Ikeja City Mall)
-V05 tea therapy conditioner (purchased at Bruno's Place)
-Herbal Essences ignite my color conditioner (purchased at Maxmart in Accra but can be found at Casa Bella or Goodies)

My staple: V05 conditioners(any kind but I like the Moisture Milks line the most I think). Haven't had a chance to use the Shea Moisture much yet.

DEEP CONDITIONERS

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-Vitale hair mayonnaise (purchased at Spar but can be found at many local grocery/beauty stores)
-Coconut milk (purchased at Spar and can be found in most big grocery stores. You can also make yours)
-Shea Moisture purification masque (purchased at NITC but can be purchased on The Kinky Apothecary as well as Olori)

My staple: None. I haven't used them long enough but I like the purification masque. Still not sold on the Vitale. Coconut milk is something I've used a number of times and I like but I don't use it very often(I mix it with other stuff e.g conditioner before use). Usually I deep condition with my regular conditioner and don't use a store bought deep conditioner so these are relatively new(except coconut milk as I explained)

LEAVE IN CONDITIONERS/MOISTURIZERS

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-Cantu Shea butter leave in conditioning repair cream-2 tubs. (One was a gift while the other was purchased on Olori)
-Elasta QP olive oil and mango butter moisturizer (Purchased at Casa Bella but can also be bought on Olori)
-Water in a spray bottle (purchased at… Just kidding)

My staple: Cantu and water

STYLING PRODUCTS

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-Shea Moisture curl enhancing smoothie (won in a giveaway but can be purchased on The Kinky Apothecary as well as Olori)
-Eco Styler olive oil gel (purchased from The Kinky Apothecary at the same time as the Bobeam)

My staple: None. I don't really use styling products. Eco styler works well when I want a laid down sleek look.

OILS

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-Olive oil (Can be found at your local grocery store)
-Silverbird Eucalyptus oil (Can be found at your local pharmacy)
-Canola oil (Can be found at your local grocery store)
-Castor oil (can be found at your local pharmacy)

My staple: None. I'm using oils less and less. If you had asked me in the past I would say Olive oil but ever since I realized that it does nothing for me when it comes to sealing, I now only use it for occasional oil rinses, prepooing and deep conditioning mixes. Silverbird I use because it is so affordable compared to other essential oils and I like the menthol feel and smell. Castor oil I use mostly when I have a protective style on or if I see my edges vanishing. Canola oil I used out of curiosity and only use for oil rinses and prepooing occasionally.

BUTTERS

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-Nasheaba Shea body butter (purchased at Shoprite Accra)
-African Naturalistas hair butter in Sweet Rosie (won in a giveaway but I believe the formula has been revised. Can be purchased on African Naturalistas or Jumia)
-Shea butter (purchased at Game Accra but can be found at your local market)

My staple: Nasheaba or any Shea butter mix/whipped Shea butter really.

MISCELLANEOUS

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-Apple Cider Vinegar (purchased at Spar. Can also be found at Shoprite. The organic version can be found at Health Plus)
-Neem powder (purchased on Olori)
-Shikakai powder (purchased on Olori)
-Bhringraj powder (purchased on Olori)

My staple: Apple cider vinegar. I use it as a final rinse most times when I wash my hair(don't know if it makes a difference but I do it) and I use it to clean my scalp when I have a protective style on. Still haven't gotten the hang of Ayurveda though.

C'est fini.

What are your staple products? Is your stash less, similar to or bigger than mine? What products do you recommend I try? Please share!

 

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- A Nigerian Natural Hair Blog!

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…

View original post 686 more words

Curl confessions

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Hi there!

I’ve been seeing people air all their hair’s dirty laundry on various blogs under the tag “Curl Confessions” and I decided to also let the breeze blow this fowl’s butt.

Without further ado, here are a few of my “dirty little secrets”:

1. It seems like I am constantly in a war with dandruff. Sometimes I win the battle for a while but in the long run dandruff runs this war.

2. I haven’t done a protein treatment in ages. I honestly can’t be bothered.

3. I have soooo many single strand knots!!!! They drive me so crazy!

4. I break off the aforementioned knots with my hands. I just yank at them.

5. I’m forever playing with the hair at my edges and nape. This is a horrible habit that I believe is the major reason for my having much shorter hair in those areas.

6. I have hand-in-hair syndrome. Nos 3,4 and 5 must have given you a clue.

7. I am very heavy handed with products especially conditioner. As a member of team cheapskate, this is bad for business as I’m always running out of stuff.

8. I have moments when I think about relaxing my hair.

9. I’m forever obsessing about my hair growing; stretching it this way and that way to see if it has grown in the last 5 minutes, daydreaming about all the styles I’ll do when it’s loooonnngg.

10. Given the funds, opportunity and funds(yes I said funds twice), I would be the Product Junkie of life! Like I would probably go gaga and need rehab.

11. Many times I can’t even be bothered to be gentle cos I don’t have the time or patience. I will pull my hair, comb/detangle aggressively, comb my hair dry etc.

12. I’ve only ever had leave in conditioner twice(although I just invested in some now cos I’m trying to change). Usually I just seal my damp hair with oil or use my regular rinse-out conditioner as a leave in and call it a day.

13. I usually forget to wash my satin bonnet often. The next one I buy has to be white or a light colour so I can see when it’s dirty and be shamed into washing it.

I’ll stop here cos right now I can’t think of any more. Remember God said we should not judge oh!

Do you do any of the things I’ve listed? Do you do worse? Or are you a saint in the hair department? Let us know in the comment section.

In other news, the blog has an email address now. I’ve added it to the “About” page but here it is nigerianandnatural@gmail.com

Feel free to email me.

Xoxo

Deep conditioning is the bomb dot com

Hi y’all!

Please please please and please, if you have not been deep conditioning frequently or you’ve not been deep conditioning at all (Ah! *shudders*) you need to hop on it oh! I beg you!

This is for ALL hair types! Everyone can benefit from it whether you’re relaxed, natural, texlaxed or you have locs.

As I told my friend the other day, I am a living testimony to the “wonderment” that is deep conditioning. My hair has really really improved overtime because I was deep conditioning every single week(or at least once every 10 days) since it was barely 1/2 an inch long. In fact at that time my family members will be telling me “please which hair do you have that you are doing all these things to it”.

Now when people touch my hair and say “So soft!” or like someone said “natural hair? And it’s soft like this?!” I know that my deep conditioning and moisturizing are paying off because my hair didn’t start out this way.

I’m not going to go into the science of it all because I’m lazy I want this to be a short post but from my own experience, deep conditioning really improves the look, feel and health of your hair. My hair is a million times softer than it was when I started this journey.

You may be thinking now, “I have to go and buy one expensive deep conditioning treatment oh!”. No you don’t! You don’t need anything fancy. All you need is your regular conditioner and some oil mixed in.

You can be adventurous and mix in other things like glycerin, honey, aloe vera gel/juice, coconut milk etc or you can even go all natural and use avocado, banana, ghee(man shanu) etc.

If you’re not into mixing stuff, you can also get yourself some store bought deep conditioning treatment. Brands like Cantu, Organic Root Stimulator etc have treatments that can be bought off the shelf and would work well.

Whatever one you choose, put it in your hair, cover with a shower cap(or plastic/nylon bag like me. lol), let it sit for a while(you can sit under a dryer if you want to but I don’t. I just let my body heat do the magic) and rinse it out. Do this every week or at least 2x a month.

I’ve tried different things but for me my staple is, conditioner+oil+honey. Sometimes I’ll add glycerin, I’ll use a mix of several conditioners, I’ll use a mix of several oils but basically, it is conditioner+oil+honey. If I don’t have honey, I use just conditioner and oil(olive, castor, coconut, peppermint etc. Anyone you like really or a mixture of all).
I cover my hair with a nylon/plastic bag, tie a scarf or 2 over it and let it sit for at least 2 hours(you can do more or less but I don’t think it should be less that 30 mins or an hour). Sometimes I leave it overnight.

I usually do this after I shampoo(if I’m using shampoo that day), after I cowash(if I’m cowashing that day) or in recent times, on dry hair and then I cowash afterwards. Whatever works for you really(some people do it before they shampoo).

Just use the internet to find different deep conditioning treatments you can do. The options are nearly endless. Try different things and methods and find what works for you.

Deep conditioning should be a part of your regimen. Of course deep conditioning alone will not change your hair. It works hand in hand with other good hair practices like moisturizing, gentle handling, keeping your hair clean etc.

Whatever you use or however you choose to do it, just make sure you deep condition CONSISTENTLY and you will reap the benefits with patience. You will end up with hair you can’t keep your hands off.

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