Hair Rules

In every natural's life, there comes a time when someone will be so overcome by the beauty and wonder that is your hair that they will feel compelled to TOUCH IT!!  Those who have recently BC'd may say "no big deal", but those of us with some length and who wear our hair in a variety of styles (twists, coils, updos, or whatever) may shrink back in fear.  For the time when you see people getting the itch to scratch your head, I've composed some suggestions:

  1. Be clear and explicit in explaining how your hair can be handled by those closest to you.  For some reason, a lot of people think that loose natural hair requires no styling and therefore is subject to random probing.  
  2. Explain to your significant other that your hair may come out of its style if fondled roughly.  You know what I mean!
  3.  Try to refrain from utilizing martial arts in protecting your coif.  This may be especially difficult for the aggressive natural.
  4. Develop a good side eye. When someone attempts to touch your hair, and you wish they'd keep their hands to themselves, turn to face them, look them squarely in the eye and then SIDE EYE the hell out of them!
  5. Decide under which conditions you will allow people to touch your hair.  For me, I will let another natural touch my hair pretty much all day long; however, random folks get the case-by-case screening because some people get nap-happy.  
  6. Explain to your significant other AGAIN how to handle your hair w/TLC if s/he plans to handle you w/TLC.  You may need diagrams.  I pretty much allow my boo free reign unless my hair is up and tucked away, which he knows took me some doing.  He knows that it's play time if my hair is in twists, a fro, or a puff, as long as he does not leave "holes" in my hair.
  7. When all else fails, channel Ms. Sophia (from the play The Color Purple, not the movie The Color Purple) and state in a strong, clear voice "Helllllllllllllllllll, NO!"
Stay happy, stay nappy!

Natural Hair and the Opposite Sex, Interracial Dating

I decided to write a brief post about a subject that has come up infrequently since I went natural and is very near and dear to me.  I am currently in an interracial relationship and some people have been curious to know what he thinks of my hair (he's blue-eyed and brown-haired).  In short, he LOVES it!  He likes to smell it, touch it, play in it, and he even likes to look at pictures of my different hair styles.  He has looked at countless pictures of me w/long, straight hair and always wrinkles his nose and says, "well, I like your hair however YOU wanna do it".  When pressed further, he admits that he prefers my hair natural.  I love that he loves my hair.  When I first went natural, I was a little worried about the reactions of men and didn't want to look masculine.  Other new naturals have voiced this concern, too. I noticed that I got one of two reactions from Black men.  They either loved it or hated it.  I actually had a Black, male co-worker tell me he thought I looked better w/straight hair and that I did not seem suited for natural hair.  WTH!?!  I heard a lot of talk of "good hair" and "at least you're light-skinned" and  I also got a little weary of the "soul sistah" comments.  I seriously need to have a shirt made that says "It's just HAIR!", but I digress.  I love my hair, but I love it for it's uniqueness, not because it's a political statement or an expression of my Blackness (I was plenty Black with the creamy crack).  I really appreciate that my boyfriend sees my hair as an extension of me and not a costume or an accessory.  Even cuter, he remembers exactly how my hair was when we met (in a twist out pony puff, although he would never call it that).  In general, I love when men are not only tolerant or accepting of natural hair, but wholly appreciative. 


Revisiting my To Do List: Following up on my product reviews!

Happy Thanksgiving!  In honor of the holiday, here is a veritable buffet of product and technique reviews!  Don't get the 'itis"!

My routine is posted on another page, but it's as follows: Pre-poo, co-wash twice or poo & co-wash at beginning of month, deep condition, clarify at end of month. I only use shampoo once a month and I only clarify (with ACV-see review below) once a month, unless it's been a really product-filled month and I want to make sure it's build-up free or to give a product a fair shot. 

Coconut milk/coconut cream :
I combined the review, because they are such similar products.  I would probably use milk for finer hair and cream for thicker hair, but both of these make pretty good deep conditioning treatments.  They're a little messy and you will probably want to pour this through your hair over the tub.  I used standard soup can-sized cans  which I picked up from Walmart for about $1.50.  I have also purchased coconut cream from a local international grocery store for $1.75.  I co-washed and thoroughly rinsed my hair.  After squeezing most of the water out of my hair, I applied the can of coconut milk or cream to my hair, squeezing it through.  After I thoroughly saturated my hair, I covered my hair with two plastic caps (you can also use a hat or a hot towel or you can skip that part, as the heat from your head naturally opens your hair cuticles up).  After leaving the milk/cream in my hair for an hour, I rinsed my hair with cold water.  My hair smelled nice, felt stronger, and retained it's softness.  Coconut is a leading ingredient in many shampoos and conditioners and is often added in whole or part to products to add protein to them. My hair does not require frequent protein treatments, but I did not observe any protein sensitivity or brittleness.  Enjoy!

PhytoMoisture hair mask
I picked this up at a local Ollie's Outlet store and tried it on a whim.  I LOVED the scent (orange cream) and felt that it did a decent job of moisturizing my hair, but not necessarily better than any other product or concoction I've liked.  I believe I paid about $6-7 for my jar, but it regularly sells for about $30.  I would purchase this again on sale or at a discount store, but I wouldn't pay $30 for it.

DevaCurl B'Leave-In 
Ick! This stuff made my hair dry as all get out.  I really wanted to like it, because my favorite blogger Curly Nikki raves about one of the company's other products, Set It FreeUnfortunately, this was no love match.  I tried it on freshly co-washed hair, old  hair, and clarified hair to no avail. I applied it over my hair with another conditioner in my hair (which I always do anyway) as recommended by the company, as it's supposed to be more of a curl enhancer than a true leave-in and I swear it ATE the Aussie Moist up! The company suggests to use it in combination with another conditioning product and I used I got this product at Ollie's Wholesale Outlet for about $3 and it regularly sells for about $18.  I wouldn't even pay the $3 again. 

Dry hair product distribution (supposed to enhance curl pattern for 4A/B)
This is a great idea!  Most of the time, I follow the routine described at the top, but this is great if you want to extend the life of your twist out or other set or if you have stretched your hair.  I used this product on an old twist out.  I have applied shea butter, conditioner, and olive oil EcoStyler gel to my dry hair and have noticed more enhanced curl pattern.  I always like my hair to be extremely moisturized, so I do not use any heat styling with the exception of my bi-annual trims (my stylist clarifies, deep conditions, blows out, and silk wraps my hair in order to trim it). 

Cinnamon/Honey hair lightener/highlighter
 I have used this recipe to slightly lighten my dark brown hair.  I am not interested in actual blondeness or what I like to call "Black people blonde" (natural honey or wheat-colored hair), but I tried it for a little warmth in my hair, since my hair is so dark that it's almost black. I have used this recipe three times and noticed that my hair was about a shade lighter (still plenty dark, but a warmer brown color).  Do not try this recipe thinking that you will get instant results.  Depending on how dark your hair is to start with, your hair will lift about a 1/2 shade with each application.  There are many recipes on YouTube and Google, but the recipe I used required 1/4 cup of cinnamon, one cup of a moisturizing conditioner (I used Suave's Almond and Shea Butter conditioner) and 2 TBS of honey.  Mix well, and allow to sit for about an hour before applying.  Apply to damp hair and squeeze through to make sure all hair is coated.  Cover with plastic caps and allow to release for one full day.  I put the mixture in my hair, cover it with the caps, and then  put on a hat (allowing a few inches to show for style.  Everywhere I went, people loved the smell (like fresh gingersnaps) and were excited to see the outcome.  Message me for more info on this method. 

Apple Cider vinegar rinse
 I use a water bottle filled about 3/4 with water and then top off with ACV.  This is a multi-purpose rinse.  It clarifies your hair, removing product build-up, cleanses the scalp, and enhances shine and curl pattern/definition.  ***This will not actually change your curl pattern, but will give you a more prounounced version of whatever you have.  For example, my 4A/4B hair clumps better to produce more defined coils and mini-ringlets. ***

Castile soap shampoo
I like to use Almond scented Dr. Bronner's castile soap that I purchased sample sizes of for 99 cents each.  I use a water bottle that is mostly full of water and add a capful of soap to it.  Shake it up and you have instant shampoo!  It has no sulfates or silicones and is gentle on curly/coily/kinky hair.

Denman brush detangling (love, love, love)
I have a Denman brush and a Goody Denman-style brush.  I love my Goody "Denman" because the teeth are wider spaced.  I have modified my Denman slightly by removing every other row of teeth (easy to do, just slide the rubber base out, open it up, and pull the teeth tracks out) and use it for detangling when my hair has been in a twist out for a while and after washing, still has the twist out "look".  


Protective Styles:Twists, Buns, and Tucks! Oh, my!

Double-strand/Two-strand twist updo
Double-strand/Two-strand twists
Rolled, tucked, and pinned
Double buns
Low bun
Rolled, tucked, fanned, and pinned
Finger rolled, tucked, pinned updo
Janaelle Monet's famous natural pompadour
Finger coils
French braids

These are a few of my favorite protective styles.  Protective styles are important in the colder months to protect your hair from the elements (literally, Earth (dirt), Wind, and Fire (the heat we use to keep us warm can dry out our hair).  Also, the air is drier during the fall and winter months, and the clothes we wear are often dangerous for our hair (wool, in particular).  Protective styles encourage moisture and length retention, as well as promote hair growth by preventing lost strands and discouraging split ends. 

I love my twists, which is why I featured them two ways here, but I also want other options for protecting my hair until the weather warms up again.  A lot of naturals feel that protective styles are boring, but I think these styles are perfect for protecting your hair and looking cute at the same time.  I have several parties and other events coming up and will probably get a chance to test out more than a few of these styles.  I can honestly say that I've tried every style shown here with the exception of the French braids, double buns, and the Janelle monet pompadour.  I will probably be giving the French braids a whirl next weekend when I re-style my hair.  Happy styling!


Product Review: Deva Curl Leave-in

So, I tried this product and I really, really wanted to like it, for two reasons.  One, I can always use a good moisturizer and two, my favorite blogger, CurlyNikki loves this product line (she likes DevaCurl Set It Free).  I used it with less than stellar results.  I tried it a variety of ways in the name of science and a fair shake.  I used it on freshly co-washed hair, between styling sessions, and on freshly co-washed and clarified (with apple cider vinegar) hair.  The results were the same each time: dry, crunchy hair.  Sorry!

Product Review: Castor Oil Hair Treatment

I have been using this as a pre-poo treatment and also as a light sealant when I mist my hair w/conditioner and water in between styling sessions.  Here's what I have to say;

As a pre-poo treatment:
It softens and makes detangling easier in my opinion (I have thick 4A/4B hair that is about shoulder-length) and the softness remains after washing my hair.  I have noticed no residue following washing sessions--I pre-poo w/a cap for several hours, co-wash twice (or shampoo and then co-wash which I do once a month), then deep condition for at least 30 minutes.  Then apple cider vinegar rinse (1/2 bottled water, 1/2 ACV).  Then I add my leave-in conditioner of choice and seal (since it's fall now, I'm sealing w/plain castor oil or a handful of the above pictured product).  Then I twist it all up.  Days later, my hair maintains it's sheen, softness, and finger-combability.  (My whole routine, including twisting, takes about 1.5 to 2 hrs actively--with the pre-poo and the deep conditioner, most of the time is spent mult-tasking w/a plastic cap and a cute hat).

As a refresher:
This is my quick fix when my hair looks a little raggedy and I don't have time and/or energy for the whole wash/twist routine and I still want to look cute and like someone loves me (Hi, Ma!).  It works well for managing frizziness and making sure that my hair stays soft and squishy (I'm not as heavy-handed as I used to be, but I like my hair to maintain it's moisture for 3-4 days between refreshing sessions and this product lasts until I re-style).  Using this as a refresher, I have noticed a tiny bit of product build-up, which was remedied by refreshing only once before stylng again.  I just mist my hair and then smooth a half-handful of this over and through my hair, concentrating on any dry spots.  I then re-twist my hair in larger twists than the original style and that's it! 

As a sealant:
I love my plain castor oil; however, one advantage of this product is that it contains several other good products

Ingredients: Hollywood Beauty Oil Complex , Mink Oil , Sweet Almond Oil , Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E) , Jojoba Oil , Paraffin Oil , Safflower Oil) , Lanolin , Cocoa Butter , Propylparaben*** , Fragrance

***Caution: contains a paraben which some studies have linked to breast cancer; however, research remains inconclusive as to whether the same levels of parabens exist in healthy breast tissue.  If you are concerned about the existence of the paraben in this product, you could create a mix with some of the other oils and yield many of the same benefits.  Castor oils, sweet almond oil, vitamin E, jojoba oil, safflower oil, and cocoa butter can be purchased at most drug stores, Walmart (ick), beauty supply stores, and health food stores for low to moderate prices.  I have purchased castor oil and vitamin E oil from Walmart for about $4-5 a bottle and sweet almond oil from the health food store for about $4 a bottle.  I have also purchased 100% cocoa butter from Walmart for $1 and have seen safflower oil in the cooking section for about $5 for a large bottle.  You can add the essential oil fragrance of your choice to this mix.

Reunited and It Feels So GOOD!

I have been on an extended absence from my blog for a number of reasons--a new job, a second job, old-fashioned exhaustion, HOUSEWORK, and of course, changing my clothes over from one season to the next.  In short, I was having a life attack, but I'm back now!!  I missed you, my little blog!


KY Jelly= Anti-frizz and Curl defining product?

Bringing sexy back in a whole new way!

So, imagine my surprise when I browsed Curly Nikki today and found the featured product suggested as an anti-frizz product.  Her blog gave the following instructions, as reprinted from Naturally Curly.com:

"Apply KY Jelly just like any gel. Don’t worry: this remedy isn’t that x-rated. Use sparingly or mixed in with other products. This paste will condition each hair strand section by section; simply smooth through curls with your fingers. Rinse, and behold silky, restored, beautiful hair. You can also apply to dry hair to define curls and smooth frizz."

I will give this tip a try and report back on the results.  If it works out, I can't wait to until someone asks what's making my hair look so good!

Happy styling!


Something Old is New(Again)

Ok, so last Thursday, I got my semi-annual blowout and trim.  Apparently, my hair has grown about 2-3 inches since March.  Not too, shabby, huh?  Although it's a little fun to have a different style for a while, I feel weird having straight hair after going natural.  Like I'm not quite myself anymroe. 



I love twist outs! They are great for extending the life of your double-strand twists as well as avoiding boredom! Twist outs can be easily molded into puffs or ponys, and they're a great way to create a more defined looking Afro or to showcase your hair's length (you worked hard to grow it, now show it!).  Twisting is a common way to stretch our hair and this can provide you with more styling options and allows you to play with the texture of your hair.
I frequently wear my twists for a week or two, then untwist them and wear a twist out for a week.  If you are concerned about hair hygiene, you can wash your hair with your twists in before taking them out for the twist out.  Untwisting is fairly simple and straight forward.  I coat my hands in some kind of hair butter or oil to avoid causing frizziness and then rotate the twist in the opposite direction that it's twisted and slide my finger in between the two "ropes" of hair.  Occasionally, I have to careful undo the end of the twist if my strands are a little tangles, and I carefully separate the twists around my hairline, because I do a flat braided twist, similar to a cornrow along the hairline. 

The Twist-out: My favorite hairstyle

Twist-out (literally, twists that have been taken out)


Southern Comfort-Keeping it soft and juicy

It has been hellaciously hot here in VA!  As much as I have roasted, I know my hair has suffered similarly.  While you don't have to worry about dryness in the summer as much as you do in the winter, you should still maintain a moisture regimen to encourage healthy strands.  My standard routine is to wash my hair once a week (every two weeks in the winter), load it up w/conditioner (right now I'm using Aussie Moist as my leave-in), and then seal w/an oil ( I'm using sweet almond oil since it is light and has a nice smell).  After styling, particularly for long-term styles, such as twists, I spray my hair with either a Dove Glossing mist that is basically Jheri Curl spray with a much better smell (water and glycerin are the main ingredients) or a homemade concoction of leftover bottled water (I hate to waste), a conditioner that won't dry flaky (ex: Yes to Cucumbers, Herbal Essences Dangerously Straight, or Aussie Moist), and a little oil (coconut oil, almond oil, vitamin E oil, etc.).  I make it so that the mixture is about 3-4 parts water, 1 part conditioner, 1/2 part oil.  For example, 3/4 cup of water, 1/4 cup of conditioner, and 1/8 cup oil if the parts are 1/4 cups.  this is a great recipe to practice your mixtress skills on or to use up leftover bits of products. 

Easy-peasy beautiful detangling!

Denman and Goody make several similar brushes that are excellent for detangling.  I use a Denman D4 brush or a similarly made, but slightly wider-set Goody brush to detangle my hair after washing.  I got my Denman brush from Sally's for about $10 and I later found a great Goody version for $5 at Rite Aid.  I usually switch off depending on what I'm doing to my hair or which brush is clean-I usually clean my brushes after washing my hair, but every now and then my ADD acts up.  I usually defer to my Goody brush because my hair has grown and the teeth are wider set.  The best thing about these brushes is that they do the work of several detangling combs (when I first went natural, I was developing quite a set of guns trying to detangle Cirrus with a comb). 

Tips for using a Denman or Goody brush:

  • Choose one based on the thickness of your hair.  My Denman looks like the white one in the middle, but it is black.  I have very thick hair, which I have determined to be mostly 4A/4B and some 3C curls in the back.  It's not the absolute thickest, but it's definitely Cabbage Patch Hair, not Barbie hair. 
  • NEVER dry-brush your hair.  It is safe to use these brushes to detangle and style your hair, as long as your hair is damp to dripping.  Also use at least a handful (I use about 4) of conditioner or styling aid such as gel to allow it to glide through your hair. 
  • Start at the ends and work your way up to the roots.  If you notice tangles or knots, add more product (I use conditioner and I almost never use any gel in my hair).
Happy styling!


Natural Love


Today's message is simple. I love afros.  I love my own, I love little baby afros, I love big, loud-ass afros, and I love  YOUR afro!  Do you?  Show an afro some love today, even if it's just your own!  Part of the natural journey is learning to accept what grows out of your own head and learning not to have afro envy.  I'm still working on the afro envy-I would love to wake up with Leela James' hair!  I'm learning to be patient with my own rate of hair growth and have learned to appreciate my own curl pattern. 

Love yourself and love your hair!



I was looking for some inspiration and I found this picture and thought I'd share! 
Hopefully, with all of this tender loving care that I give my hair, Cirrus will grow to this size by next year!


ADD has a hold of me!!--Happy Belated Nappiversary to ME!

I forgot to announce  that my Nappiversary was on July 24!!  Yes, it's been one year (and some change, now) since I cut off the last of the perm and embraced my real hair.  In celebration of one year of natural hair, here's a my story in a nutshell:

Birthday girl- 3/12/10-Happy 30th!

I had natural hair until I was 7 years old and my paternal grandmother decided that I needed to have a Jheri curl.  Of course, she decided this on my dad's weekend without consulting my mother.  I can't imagine how upset my mother must have been to send her baby off with two pigtails and have her return with a greasy, drippy head of curls.  After blessing my Grandma Dot out, my mother essentially opted to just let it grow out and deal with it as best she could (thank God for banana clips!).  After growing out the curl that wasn't all that carefree for 2 years, I got a relaxer at 9 years old and maintained one ever since. I had rinses, highlights, all over color that I did at home (trying to lighten my hair a little, I turned myself into a caramel SKUNK) and even had 2 weaves (one horrible, MC-Lyte mushroom style one from someone who just wanted some money and another fabulous interlock weave that invited the attention of one of the finest dudes on campus, sigh) .  I always planned to go natural, but I planned to wait until I was ready to have kids because perms are bad for pregnant women.  Well, no children, yet, but here it is!  I started off stretching my relaxers out to encourage healthy growth during the winter and after getting my last one in October 2009, I figured, if I can go 2 months, 3 months, etc., why not go FOREVER!?! 
Day of Big Chop 7/24/09


Shea Butter Parkay!! (Conspiracy Theory)

Anyone who knows me knows that I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE me some shea butter!  Like Lisa Lisa and Cult Jam, "ooh, baby, I love it from head to toe!"  Well, in the midst of all this shea love, imagine my surprise and quite frankly my disgust when a dear friend called to inform me that my beloved shea might just be an imposter!  Apparently, the yellow, Playdoh (R) looking stuff that is sold in plastic tubs and glass jars as "African Shea Butter" is actually a blend of various nut butters, including shea, and some kind of yellow coloring.  The real Slim Shea-dy is actually more of a white color, according to preliminary research.  I will be doing more research on this foolishness, and will include more info as I find it (include where to find/order it).  In the meantime, if you're like me and you have tubs and tubs of the Designer Imposter shea butter, it is perfectly safe for continued use on hair and skin.  It's just not 100% pure shea butter.  Apparently, it's Shea Parkay!


Summer Protective Styles

Pretty much everyone who knows me knows that I am a HUGE fan of protective styling-double strand twists or braids, updos, or extensions used to protect your hair long term by providing a break from daily or frequent styling.  Many naturals consider these styles to be strictly winter weather options, when the dry, bitter cold poses a threat to our fragile strands.  While I enjoy "unleashing the beast" during the warm weather, and grew a little tired of protective styling by February, I have renewed my interest in such styles due to the OVERWHELMING heat we are having in Virginia these days.  I love to wear my fro, do a puff or wear other "out" styles; however, in my case, at least, I have learned that natural hair is strong like King Kong and does not like to allow so much as a breeze to pass through it.  With that acknowledgment, I had to figure out how to make my protective style of choice-the two-strand or double strand twist, summer-friendly. I will add pics to this post later, but my current style is mini double-strands which can be pinned up and can be shifted into at least three different styles.  This time, I styled them into a pseudo-shag haircut, with the twists creating the silhouette of sideswept "swoosh" bangs and an elongated pixie cut, similiar to the picture shown. 


Correction-July 4th is National Afro Day!!

There is a campaign to make July 4th National Afro Day in addition to a day to celebrate America's inception.  Don't forget to rock out with your locks (or locs) out!!

Fros on the Fourth--Assert Your Independence (from creamy crack)

I saw this posted on another blog (I read so many I can't remember) and thought it would be a good idea to promote it on my blog to my reader(s).  Hey Shayna!  Anyways, the suggestion was to promote natural hair esteem and self acceptance by rocking your natural, um, naturally on the 4th of July.  Usually, I love my hair to be in a protective style; however, I feel that this is a worthwhile excuse to unleash the beast (my crowning glory, Cirrus).  Please rock your fro on the 4th and show your natural pride!!

Deep Conditioning Treatment

Quick recipe:

2 cups suave Almond &Shea Butter conditioner
3 TBs honey (a natural humectant and shine builder)
1/4 cup Giovanni Smooth As Silk Protein Hair Infusion (purchased @ Walmart for $1.50)
1 TB of Olive oil (shine and sealing properties)
2 plastic caps (to relive the Carefree curl days)

*pre-detangled hair is optional, but recommended.  Finger detangle dry hair and mist with water or use your method of choice for wet hair and squeeze out

Mix well (about 2 minutes) and let sit for a minute.  Distribute evenly through your damp, not dripping, hair (I pre-detangled and chunky twisted my hair and squished it through the twists).  Cover with plastic caps (I used two, because I went to sleep and didn't want any goo on my pillows).  I deep condition for at least an hour, but usually overnight (I DC'd overnight this time).  After rinsing well, I found that my hair was soft and shiny and easily combed through.  I will add before and after pics to this review later!

Upcoming Product Reviews

In order to hold myself responsible, I'm listing the products/regimens/tips I will be reviewing:

Coconut cream (supposed to be an excellent deep conditioner)
PhytoMoisture hair mask
DevaCurl Leave-In
Dry hair product distribution (supposed to enhance curl pattern for 4A/Bs)

I will also get around to posting reviews on things I have already tried including:

Cinnamon/Honey hair lightener/highlighter
Coconut milk
Apple Cider vinegar rinse
Castile soap shampoo
Denman brush detangling (love, love, love)


Wen Knock-off--Introducing Hair One

You may have heard of an all-in-one product  called Wen (usually shows up late at night on infomercials, if you have cable).  Antyways, it costs $30 for the entire introductory package which should last 30 days.  Curlies are subject to PJ-ism as much as the next head, but $30 is a lot of money for a product that needs to be replenished frequently.  While perusing my local Sally's (I can ALWAYS be found where there are hair products, especially conditioner), I noticed a new product-HairOne.  My Sally's had an olive oil one, a jojoba oil one, and a tea tree one and they even had sample packets.  The full-size bottle is $10.99 for 8 oz which is a great deal versus the Wen.  Now, I have never used the Wen, but I do know that since going natural, I use conditioner like it's going out of style.  According to the official site, you cannot order the conditioner seperately, so I figure you have to order the entire kit each time you run out of conditioner.  CurlMart charges $28 (plus shipping and handling) for 16 oz.  I usually spend about $5 for 28 oz of Herbal Essences or $6 for 33.5 oz of Aussie Moist, so Wen is a little steep for me. 

Back to your regularly scheduled review: I used two packets of the Olive Oil Hair One, following my usual routine (co-wash twice and then more conditioner and comb through) except that I used the Hair One in place of the two conditioners I usually use.  I found that I needed more product than what is recommended on the package (I used a whole packet to co-wash and a whole packet to comb-through).  While my hair did not feel quite as moisturized as it usually does , I felt that my hair felt soft and conditioned overall and that this product would be good in a pinch or for travel. 

***I also purchased two packets of the Jojoba Hair One that I will review at later time. 

Stay curly, Cupcakes!


Natural Starter Kit

Many people begin their natural journey without the faintest idea of how to proceed, what to use, etc.  I know I did.  I transitioned for 8 months and during that time I pretty much treated my hair as though it was still permed.  I didn't change any products or regimens (I was using KeraCare stuff then) and had my hair straigthened every two weeks for probably the first two months.  Then I started getting my hair braided every month before I finally BC'd.  I say all that to say that I wish that I'd had some guidance in the way of what to do w/my new hair.  Which brings me to:

Natural Basics:
  • a really good leave-in conditioner-I recommend using something from the Herbal Essences line-I like Dangerously Straight and Hello Hydration.  something without silicones, parabens, or sulfates. Some naturals like silicones for slip and smoothing of the hair follicle, but some silicones can mask damage.  I avoid parabens because there is some empirical evidence that links them to various cancers and I avoid sulfates because they can strip natural oils from your hair.  I have stopped using Herbal Essences and Aussie moist because they contain these ingredients and now use either Yes to Cucumbers or Giovanni Moisture Max to co-wash, and Yes to Cucumbers regular conditioner or leave-in as, um, a leave-in.  I love Yes to Cucumbers which I use on my ends or to refresh my hair. 
  • a really good conditioner for conditioning or co-washing (washing your hair using conditioner)-I use V05 Moisture Milks or Tea Therapy-My favorite is Blackberry (my grandad used to grow blackberries to make jam for me as a kid) and Passionfruit.  Conditioner really can clean your hair and scalp as well as shampoo without the drying effects
  • sulfate-free shampoo for occasional or weekly use-I only shampoo once a month, just in case I have product build-up; however, if you wish to shampoo, choose a moisturizing one or at least one without sulfates (salts which strip hair of its natural oils and dry it out).  I shampoo with castile soap diluted with spring water (works well w/my unfinished water bottle habit). 
  • oil(s) and/or butter(s) of your choice for sealing end-I have all of the basic oils including olive oil, almond oil, coconut oil, vitamin E oil, and castor oil.  You can also melt shea butter to make oil.  I also add 1-3 Tbs of oil to my leave-in conditioner.  I LOVE shea butter from head to toe, but I've recently embraced QP Elasta Mango & Olive Oil butter for sealing or adding a litle shine to my hair. 
  • detangling comb or brush-I use a Denman brush, but a lot of people like shower combs (I recommend a seamless comb).  *as of 5/23/11, I own a Ouidad detangling comb, Denman, AND a Tangle Teezer.  Please don't judge me.  I'm seeking treatment for my PJism!*
  • a rat tail comb for parting-I usually use my fingers to do my twists, but I like clean parts for other styles
  • shower caps for deep conditioning
  • old t-shirts and/or microfiber towels (smoother and softer on hair)-tip: don't use fabric softener on towels or whatever you use to dry your hair/body because it makes them less absorbent
bottles or other containers for mixtures and concoctions you might make for your hair
honey for deep conditioning or natural highlights
yogurt for deep conditioning
coconut milk or cream for deep conditioning



I decided to write a blog for a number of reasons.  I'm newly natural and would like to both document and share my journey, I want to share knowledge and insight with others, and I was looking for a way to encompass all of my passions (my culture, my interest in other cultures, and my desire to learn and share hair info).  Please feel free to drop by, share what's on your mind, and tell a friend!




Hey y'all!  I wanted to explain my reasons for starting this blog.  After being asked by several relatives, friends, and strangers about my hair, how to go natural, product reviews, etc. I figured I could be most helpful if I could provide people with a central location for information about my natural explorations and other curiosities.  I hope you find this blog to be helpful, informative, and entertaining.  I welcome suggestions, ideas, and of course, praise!