Curly~n~Natural

Curly~n~Natural

Friday, January 29, 2010

My Apologies!

Happy Thursday everyone! I wanna apologize because I didn't do my update like I said I would but i will do it tomorrow I promise I will so stay tuned......
Thanks for your support, have a great day!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

I Couldn't Do It!

Happy Tuesday everyone! Well people I gave up and went ahead and took my kinky twists out last night. I just couldn't take it any more! My hair felt like it was incarcerated, and besides my hair was starting to loc in the twists, and I was only 4days shy of 4wks.
Today I am going to clarify my hair, do a protien treatment, deep condition,do a length check, trim my ends and I'll be back tomorrow with my update. However I will be doing a video update on YouTube, and I'll be posting a update on my fotki page as well.

Thanks for your support! Have a great day!

Monday, January 25, 2010

A Natural Hair Fruit Salad!


Happy Monday beautiful people! Today I've pointed out a few fruit that is great for hair growth. So let's get started.......

1.Bananas
Banana is rich in potassium, natural oils, carbohydrates and vitamins that helps in softening the hair and protects the hair's natural elasticity preventing split ends and breakage. Bananas when used for hair has a number of benefits such as it creates manageability, shine, growth and controls dandruff. These are simply the best for hair and the scalp. Bananas enhance the strength, endurance and shine of the hair and can be referred to as the banana food. Bananas are full of vitamins and is a number one ingredient for strengthening and volumizing the hair. It helps in repairing dry and sun-damaged hair.

2.Coconut
Coconut oil enhances shine and gives an incredible glossy softness to the hair. It has anti-fungal and anti-microbial qualities that help combat dandruff and bacterial scalp infections.Coconut oil is even believed to slow hair loss by revitalizing and exfoliating dead skin tissue from the scalp. Unlike coconut oil, coconut milk contains proteins, which strengthen hair and can help to minimize breakage. It also has properties which protect hair and scalp from UV rays.

3.Avocado
Avocado oil is excellent for the hair because the oil is rich in proteins, amino acids, and vitamins A,D,and E. The oil also acts as a humectant which means that it adds moisture to the hair. Not only can raw avocados be mashed and applied to the hair, avocado oil is also a great deep conditioning treatment. But one of the creamiest, richest by-products of this fruit is avocado butter. Avocado butter will leave your hair soft, shiny, untangled and rehydrated.

4.Cucumber
Cucumber has an impressive amount of water (about 96%) that is naturally distilled, which makes it superior to ordinary water. Its skin contains a high percentage of vitamin A, so should not be peeled off. The cucumber contains alkaline-forming minerals and is an excellent source of vitamin C and A (anti-oxidants), folate, manganese, molybdenum, potassium, silica, sulfur, and lesser amounts of vitamin B complex, sodium, calcium, phosphorus and chlorine. The silicon and sulfur content in cucumber juice makes it especially helpful in promoting hair growth. Cucumber has alomost all the benefits of aloe vera except that aloe vera is much better for hair than cucumber.

5.Lemon
Massage some lemon juice onto hair and leave it for a while before rinsing. Again, do not do this before going in the sun. This treatment is especially good for greasy hair as it will regulate the sebaceous glands which produce oil and make the hair shine and prevent dandruff.

6.Amla
Amla is used in many hair tonics. It enriches hair growth and hair pigmentation. It strengthens roots of hair , maintains color and luster. Eating fresh fruit or applying its paste on hair roots improves hair growth and color.It contains many minerals and vitamins like Calcium, Phosphorus, Iron, Carotene and Vitamin B Complex. Amla is also a powerful antioxidant agent. Many health problems are conduced by oxidative damage (when body cells use oxygen they produce by-products that can cause damage). Antioxidant agents prevent and repair such damages.

7.Peach
For that peachy looking skin and glowing hair have a lot of peaches. Peaches are alkaline fruits and help to give the skin and hair a healthy glow. People who suffer from brittle nails will also find that having alkaline fruits helps make their nails stronger.

A high consumption of fruits and veggies is necessary when trying to grow long healthy hair! So eat up! Thanks for your Support! May God Bless you and yours!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

6 More days!

Happy Sunday everyone! I pray you all made it to the House of God today!
You know I have 6 days until I can take these kinky twists out of my hair and I'm so happy! I'm so proud of myself, because this is the first time in my 27yrs of life, that i kept braids in my hair for this long! Yay!

My twist upkeep has mainly been spraying my hair with a water/aloe mix every other day, and then spraying a braid oil that i made in my hair on the days i do not use the water/aloe mix. I clarified my hair once with a ACV Rinse. On the 30th or 31st I'll be doing my growth update! I'm so excited about that!

We are moving to El Paso in 2wks, I need to find another protective hairstyle! Does anyone have any suggestions? I was thinking about sewing some hair in, but i don't know. I really don't want to rebraid it because I'm gonna be looking for a house and a job and i dont want to be out doing that with my roots looking a mess! My sis-in law suggested a wig but me and wigs really don't get along! But i'm sure i'll find something! Well I thank you for your support! Have a great day!

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Beer! Who Knew?

Happy Saturday! Today's blog is gonna be real short sweet and simple! Enjoy!

Beer Adds body and shine to dull lifeless hair!

How is Beer Good for Hair?
Beer is made from malt and hops, which contain proteins that are thought to repair hair damaged by chemical processing, sun, chlorine and pollution, and add body to limp strands. The sugars in the beer are believed to make hair shiny by tightening the hair cuticles.
Prep:
You will want the beer to be flat before putting it on your hair. Open a 12-ounce bottle or can of beer and let it sit out for an hour or two before you plan to shower. You will want to clarify your hair before using the beer rinse.

Lather, Rinse, Add Beer
After clarifying and rinsing your hair, pour the entire beer over your hair, making sure to coat the strands from scalp to tips. Gently massage the beer into your hair and let it soak in for at least two minutes. Rinse your hair completely with cool water. You can then use your regular conditioner to neutralize any traces of beer scent. Style as usual!

Beer! Who knew it could have such an amazing affect on our kinks, coils, and curls?
In my opinion it's not good for drinking but it's a great hair product!
Thanks for your support! God bless you and yours!

Friday, January 22, 2010

My Homemade Hair and Body butter!


Happy Friday Everyone! OK...... Today I am going to share with you how I make my homemade Hair and body butter! I haven't gave it a name yet! Maybe I should, but anyway......

You will need........

2oz Pure Refined Avocado Butter
4oz Raw Pressed Mango Butter
8oz Raw Shae Butter
5 Vitamin E Capsules
2Tbs Almond Oil
1Tbs Vegetable Glycerin
3drps Lemon Essential Oil for fragrance

Directions: Slightly Soften butters in Microwave(Do Not Melt the Butters). Beat the butters together with a hand mixer for about 5 minutes on low speed, slowly add the vitamin E, Almond oil, and Glycerin, beat mix for another 5minutes or so. Last add lemon oil and beat another 5minutes or so. Your products should be smooth, creamy and very light! Note: In the Picture above I placed my mix in a old 8oz butter container. And remember a little goes a long way!

I make a lot of homemade products maybe one day I'll start selling them, but until then I'll just share my Recipes. If you decide to try it, let me know what you think! Thanks for the support! God bless you and yours!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Essential and Carrier Oils


Happy Thursday everyone! This blog is dedicated to my girl Chantae over at naturalsunshine.ning.com. Ok........

What you should know before purchasing essential oils:

- Not all essential oils are created equal. Most of the essential oils on the market are what is called "perfume quality" or "fourth & fifth quality" oils. This includes oils found in health food stores. Perfume Oils”, “Fragrant Oils” or any "Aromatherapy Oils" that do not call themselves “Essential Oils” often are not pure at best and most are either cut/stretched and adulterated with added ingredients, or they are synthetic.

- Perfume Oils" and "Fragrant Oils" are almost always artificial. They may smell nice, but they do not have the natural and therapeutic properties of a natural, pure essential oil. Pure unadulterated essential oil is very hard to come by & can be very expensive.

- Do not use essential oils directly on the scalp! Always dilute with a carrier oil and/or with distilled water.

How long will essential oils last? Unfortunately essential oils do not have date stamps when sold, so it is impossible to tell how old they are when you buy them. Most people believe it's about two years.

How/where to store essential oils? Essential oils should be purchased and stored in dark-colored glass bottles such as cobalt blue or amber with have tight seal and with droppers. The dark glass protects the essential oils from the light but you need to store them away from direct sunlight and away from any heat source, preferably in a cool and dark cabinet. Your oils can evaporate so always keep the cap screwed on tight. Also, be cautioned that essential oils can harm some varnished wood surfaces and some plastics.


4 levels of therapeutic oils

PURE - This means the oil was not diluted with a lesser quality essential oil. "Pure" does not mean it has no chemicals added to it. In the U.S., all you need is 5% of essential oil in the bottle in order to label it "100% pure."

NATURAL - This means the oil was not adulterated with vegetable oils, propylene glycol, SD Alcohol 40 or other chemicals.

COMPLETE - This means the oil was distilled at low heat & low pressure so that all the therapeutic properties are there. Essential oils are often redistilled to make a small amount of oil go farther. They can make more profit that way. The problem is, when you redistill the oil you lose the therapeutic properties. It's like using a tea bag over & over again.

GENUINE or GRADE A - These are the cream of the crop and quite rare. These oils are made never has chemicals put on it.

.

Dilution of Essential Oils

Normal Dilution by 2.5%
You’ll need (x) ml carrier oil/2 = total drops of essential oil. Example - (Essential) 5 drops Sandalwood, 3 drops essential oil, 2 drops orange in 20ml carrier oil.

Low Dilution by 1%
You’ll need (x) mil carrier oil/4 = total drops of essential oil
Example - 3 drops essential oil per 20 ml carrier oil.

Extremely low Dilution by 0.5% (very sensitive scalps)
Example - 1 drop essential oil per 10ml of carrier oil.

Conversions:

5ml = 1 teaspoon
30ml = 1 fluid oz
1ml = 20 drops of essential oil
600ml = 1 pint



Few useful Essential Oils for Hair Growth
Essential oils contained in plants are really their life force and are the fragrant constituents found in plants. In plants, these oils are ingredients of hormonal growth and reproduction. Many essential oils have a very beneficial effect on hair growth. Studies suggest that one or more of the essential oils are biologically able to promote hair growth. Essential oils for hair growth are excellent for cleansing, nourishing, and strengthening the hair follicle and shaft. These essential oils for hair growth stimulate the hair follicles to grow faster than the hair would normally. Here is the list of some essential oils for hair growth you can use them depending on your specific need.

Jojoba Essential Oil
Jojoba essential oil can be used with any hair and skin type. The healing qualities of jojoba oil are beneficial for extremely damaged or breaking hair. This truly is one of the best essential oils for hair loss due to breakage. Apply the oil to towel dry hair and leave on for at least half an hour. A very small amount applied to the skin of the face will help prevent hair dye stains when dye is applied.

Burdock Essential Oil
Burdock essential oil is good for the scalp and encourages hair growth. It is also good for the skin, scalp and hair cell renewal, and stimulates blood flow to the root of the hair. It helps with the problem of hair loss.

Rosemary and Clary Sage essential oils
Rosemary encourages hair growth. These two herbs when used together externally prove extremely beneficial to anyone wanting to grow their hair. For best results, take a pan of water and boil rosemary, sage, peach leaf, nettle and burdock. Strain the loose herbs from the liquid and wash your hair with this liquid everyday. Clary sage when combined with jojoba and applied to the roots of your hair can cause your hair to grow.

Tea Tree Essential Oil
Tea tree oil is one of the most versatile essential oils for hair growth when it comes to hair treatments. This oil moisturizes the hair and minimizes oil production of the scalp, preventing greasy looking hair and leaving the scalp clean and dandruff-free. A few drops of tea tree oil can be added to olive oil for a mild but effective weekly treatment to deal with dandruff problems.

Basil and Peppermint Essential oils
Basil helps circulation of blood and works well in combination with fenugreek and ivy burdock herbs. Basil helps in growth of oily hair. Peppermint helps to stimulate blood flow to the root of your hair and so give it good nourishment and grow well. It helps in growth of dry hair. It is good for your hair if it grows slowly or if it is thinning.

Citrus Essential Oils
Oily hair will get a great benefit from regular treatments with either lemon or grapefruit essential oils. These oils condition the hair and clean the scalp. Warm or cold oil can be applied to the hair.

Lavender Essential Oil
Lavender essential oil is used to treat a variety of conditions including alopecia (hair loss). It has been shown to promote the growth of hair and increase the rate of wound healing. In a study it was found that people suffering from alopecia who massaged their scalps with lavender and other essential oils daily for 7 months experienced significant hair re-growth. Thus lavender or a combination of lavender and other essential oils were responsible for the beneficial effects.

Olive Oil
Olive oil can be combined with other nice smelling essential oils and is especially beneficial for dry hair. Olive oil helps in growth of dry hair. The hair is nourished and will regain its elasticity after a treatment with this oil. Apply to wet or dry hair. Olive oil can also be used as a hot oil treatment.

Bay Essential Oil
This essential oil helps in growing your hair. If you have dull and lifeless hair, it will restore it with life and shine. Add six drops of bay and lavender essential oil to four ounces of warm carrier oil. Massage the mixture into the scalp and allow it to absorb for 20 minutes. Then clarify or co-wash with one of your fav products, to which you've added three drops of bay essential oil. If you're plagued with dandruff problems or if you have aches and pains, use this oil for pain relief.

There is an essential oil available for nearly every hair or scalp problem. But remember that the essential oils are too concentrated and shouldn't be used directly on the skin or hair. So it's best to use them in combination with carrier oils like almond, soybean and sesame, chosen in accordance with the effect you're looking for. Choose the appropriate essential oil and team it up with carrier oil and soon, you'll find you have long, lustrous hair.

Here's a quick list of some carrier oils:

Almond oil
Aloe vera oil
Apricot kernel oil
Avocado oil
Calendula oil
Evening primrose oil
Grape seed oil
Hazelnut oil
Jojoba oil
Macadamia oil
Rosehip oil
Sesame oil
Walnut oil
Wheatgerm oil

Chantae, I hope I answered your question. There are many many other essential oils that's great for our hair. Please please do your research or consult your physician before trying knew products. Thanks for your support! Have a blessed one!

My Tips on Growing Healthy Hair!

Happy Wednesday beautiful people! Growing long, beautiful and healthy hair is not an extremely difficult process. It does not require a multitude of salon hair products or handfuls of expensive vitamins. What it does take is "know how", dedication, and a lot of patience.

A lot of women focus on having only long hair, but your hair will not grow long if it isn't healthy. Below I have listed some tips on growing healthy hair.


1. The first step to growing long, beautiful hair is you must cut off every inch that is severely damaged. There is absolutely no way to repair damaged hair, you *must* start out with healthy hair to have healthy hair. If your hair is not very damaged up the entire shaft, you may start with a very healthy trim.

2. Always trim your ends often. Damage to your hair will move up from the ends and the only way to stop the damage in its tracks is to remove it as soon as it happens. Use good tools to trim your hair, using anything else can actually encourage more splitting down the road! It's important the shears you use are very sharp, made specifically for cutting hair, and used for nothing else. If your hair begins to show damage, it is important to trim it more often! Damaged hair doesn't grow, it breaks and if you let it go, damage will only increase with time.

3. Avoid using any heated appliances whenever possible. No blow drying, no curling irons, no hot rollers, and especially no flat irons or crimpers! If you absolutely must blow dry do so minimally. It is best to let your hair air dry. Only straighten or press out your hair on special occassions like your birthday, hair nappiversary or your wedding anniversary. Heat severely damages hair!

4. Don't use any harsh chemicals on your hair. Definitely no relaxers and no peroxide! Stay Natural! If you must color, use non peroxide color or 100% natural henna (henna comes in a full range of colors, and continuous use will inevitably cause damage.)

5. Avoid chlorine and saltwater. If you go swimming in either, clarify your hair as soon as possible after exposure. If you swim very often, invest in a good swimming cap (and to be really kind to your hair, apply deep conditioner and take advantage of the body heat that will be generated while you're wearing it).

6. Be careful of what kind of hair jewelry you use and be sure to use only hair-safe accessories. Never use metal barrettes and absolutely NEVER use rubberbands, they will tear your hair when you try to remove them. Avoid anything that has sharp or rough edges, such as plastic combs with rough seams or hair claws with metal hinges.


7. Never put your hair in any kind of style that will put undue stress on the roots or edges... no extremely tiny braids, no extremely tight puffs or ponytails. Pulling hair tight repeatedly commonly results in thinning sides, and edges.

8. Be gentle with your hair when it is wet. Don't rub your hair vigorously with a towel, gently squeeze the towel down the length of your hair.

10.Never comb or brush dry hair! This causes breakage! Use a denman brush, k-cutter or wide tooth comb when your hair is wet.

12.Detangle Hair with a really good conditioner. This helps the knots to easily slip out!

13. Do Not use sulfate shampoos to wash your hair. I can't stress this enough. These shampoos will dry your hair out leaving it brittle and prone to breakage. Co-Wash! And if you have to use a shampoo try using a sulfate free shampoo such as Elasta QP creme conditioning shampoo. Clarifying your hair with a ACV Rinse is a great way to clean, detox and remove build-up from your hair.

14. Rinse your hair in as cold water as you can stand. This will make your cuticles lay flat and less likely to snag and break.

15. Become familiar with the ingredients in your styling products. Once you know what affects your hair positively or detrimentally, you will be able to effectively choose products and ingredients that is best for your hair type.

16. Deep condition your hair regularly. Hot oil treatments using pure jojoba oil are a good alternative for very dry hair or for extra conditioning.

17. Lessen the friction on your hair whenever possible. Sleep with a satin bonnet everynight! Satin pillow cases are great also.

18. Faithfully seal in your moisture. First apply a water based product, such as a aloe/water mix, or a leave-in conditioner. This is because water is easily soaked up by our hair. Then apply a oil based product such as castor oil, almond oil, shae butter or whatever works for you. This will help seal the water based product into the strands of your hair. And then add a cream based product such as Elasta QP recovery oil moisturizer. This help seal in the other 2 products. This is a must for us sistahs! Our kinks, curls and coils could very well easily break if our moisture levels isn't right.Also drinking plenty of water helps to keep our hair moisturized as well.

19. Be sure to maintain healthy eating habits! Be sure to consume plenty of living foods. This is our source to the many needed vitamins and minerals.

20. Find natural alternatives to store bought products! The benefits are amazing!

OK ladies there you have it, some of my tips to growing healthy hair! Embrace your natural beauty! Thanks for your support! God bless you and yours!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

What's your Type?


Happy Tuesday Everyone! My Husband got his new orders in today and we're moving to El pASO, TX. We are so excited. Surely Goodness and mercy shall follow us all the way to EL Paso! Anyway.... There is a simple system to define hair types and to encourage healthy hair as well as a healthy mindset. The system is called LOIS, which takes away the need for a strict hierarchical hair system that separates good hair from bad hair.

Before you begin, please keep in mind that a healthy, undamaged, virgin hair strand, meaning one that is not processed, relaxed or colored, is needed. Examine Your Hair Strand: Select a single strand of the most common type of hair on your head. Aim for 70%, so if you have different textures, use the most common texture on your head. The hair should be freshly washed without products applied to it and rinsed in cold water. Or, gently rinse a single hair with a little dish detergent and rinse in cold water. Allow the hair to dry on a bit of paper towel so that you can look at the pattern without touching it.

Find Your Pattern:

L - If the hair has all bends, right angles and folds with little to no curve then you are daughter L.

O - If the strand is rolled up into the shape of one or several zeros like a spiral, then you are daughter O.

I - If the hair lies mostly flat with no distinctive curve or bend you are daughter I.

S - If the strand looks like a wavy line with hills and valleys then you are daughter S.

You may have a combination of the LOIS letters, possibly with one dominant. If you cannot see one letter over the others, then combine the letters. Example: LO or IL or OS..

Find Your Strand size:
A strand of frayed thread is about the thickness of a medium sized strand of human hair. If your strand is larger than this, then your hair is thick. If your strand is smaller than this, hair is thin, or fine..

Find Your Texture:
Shine is a sharp reflection of light while Sheen is a dull reflection of light.

Thready - Hair as a low sheen, with high shine if the hair is held taut (as in a braid), with low frizz. Wets easily but water dries out quickly.

Wiry - Hair has a sparkly sheen, with low shine and low frizz. Water beads up or bounces off the hair strands. Hair never seems to get fully wet.

Cottony - Hair has a low sheen, a high shine if the hair is held taunt and has high frizz. Absorbs water quickly but does not get thoroughly wet very fast.

Spongy - Hair has a high sheen with low shine with a compacted looking frizz. Absorbs water before it gets thoroughly wet.

Silky - Hair has low sheen, a very high shine, with a lot or low frizz. Easily wets in water.

Knowing your hair type helps you better understand your hair! When you better understand your hair then you can begin to treat it the way it loves and wants to be treated!

Thanks for your support! Have a great day!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Scalp Conditions and Natural Ways to Treat Them!

Happy Monday and MLK Jr. Day! I use to suffer from extremely bad dandruff and I know a lot of other people who suffer from other scalp conditions. So today I wanna share with a few common scalp conditions and also some natural ways to treat them. Here we go.........

*Eczema is a non-infectious skin condition which may be aggravated by allergens such as animal dander, certain foods and additives in soaps, perfumes or body washes. An eczema outbreak is usually recognized by red, inflamed skin that is rough and itchy. Often the eczema rash may eventually lead to bloody, oozing sores which eventually scab over to thickened, dark skin, particularly in my black sistahs and brothers. In some cases, the eczema rash can be found on the backs of knees and the insides of the elbows.

*Dandruff affects the scalp and causes flakes of skin to appear - it is a common condition. Our skin cells are forever renewing themselves. When the skin cells on our scalp are renewed the old ones are pushed to the surface and out of the scalp. For a person with dandruff the renewal is faster, meaning more dead skin is shed, making the dandruff more noticeable. Dandruff can also occur if the scalp is frequently exposed to extreme temperatures. Dandruff is also known as scurf - its medical term is Pityriasis capitis.

*Seborrheic dermatitis
This is a skin condition in which the skin becomes inflamed or flaky. Seborrheic dermatitis of the scalp is a severe form of dandruff. When it affects the scalp most people refer to it as dandruff. When babies have it, it is referred to as cradle cap. Seborrheic dermatitis causes larger, greasier flakes than most other types of dandruff. Seborrheic dermatitis affects not only the scalp, but the skin in other parts of the body too. The exact cause of seborrheic dermatitis is unknown. Most experts do know, though, that it is not caused by poor hygiene.

*Alopecia areata is a hair-loss condition which usually affects the scalp. It can, however, sometimes affect other areas of the body. Hair loss tends to be rather rapid and often involves one side of the head more than the other. Current evidence suggests that alopecia areata is caused by an abnormality in the immune system. This particular abnormality leads to autoimmunity. As a result, the immune system attacks particular tissues of the body. In alopecia areata, for unknown reasons, the body's own immune system attacks the hair follicles and disrupts normal hair formation. Biopsies of affected skin show immune cells inside of the hair follicles where they are not normally present. What causes this is unknown.

*Psoriasis is a common skin condition that causes skin redness and irritation. Most persons with psoriasis have thick, red skin with flaky, silver-white patches called scales.Persons with psoriasis have irritated patches of skin. The redness is most often seen on the elbows, knees, and trunk, but can appear anywhere on the body. For example, there may be flaky patches on the scalp.

Now that I've listed a few of the most common scalp conditions, I want to list some natural ways to treat these conditions. Note: Most of the resources listed can be used on various scalp conditions, and are very versatile and can be combined with other oils. I recommend first speaking to your physician and then adding about 10drops of the oil/oils of your choice into either warm distilled water or a carrier oil of your choice such as Grapeseed, Olive, Hemp Seed, or Almond Oil and gently massage into your scalp 3-4 times a week.

So Here we go.......

*Burdock root oil - traditional herbal hair oil.
Burdock (Arctium Lappa) has been a favorite medicinal herb for centuries and was taken for many ailments. Burdock root oil extract, also called Bur oil, was popular in Europe as a scalp treatment applied to combat hair loss, improve hair strength, shine and body. It also used as an herbal remedy to get rid of dandruff and scalp itching, promote healing of skin and scalp conditions. Modern studies indicate that Burdock root oil extract is rich in phytosterols and essential fatty acid, nutrients required for healthy scalp and natural hair growth.
In case of severe itching and flaking, start with ointment Balmflower; continue with Bur oil when conditions improve.

*Coconut oil
The small molecular structure of coconut oil allows for easy absorption through the skin, giving it a soft, smooth texture. It makes an ideal ointment for the relief of dry, rough and wrinkled skin. Psoriasis and eczema suffers often see great improvements in these distressing conditions. Antiseptic fatty acids in coconut oil help to prevent fungal and bacterial infections in the skin when it is consumed and to some extent, when it is applied directly to the skin. The only way to gain entry into the body other than through the natural openings, such as the nose and mouth, is by penetrating the skin. When the skin's defenses break down, infections can result.The medium chain fatty acids in the sebum provide the protective layer on the skin that kills harmful germs. Coconut oil is nature's richest source of medium chain fatty acids. When coconut oil is put on the skin it doesn't have any immediate antimicrobial action. However, when bacteria which are always present on the skin turn these triglycerides into free fatty acids, just as it does with sebum, the result is an increase in the number of antimicrobial fatty acids on the skin and protection from infection. The free fatty acids also help to contribute to the acid environment on the skin which repels disease causing germs.



*Tea Tree (Melaleuca Alternifolia)
Extracted from the leaves of the tea tree and have a long used by the indigenous people of Australia for its cleansing and purifying properties. Great for treating dry scalp, mild dandruff, head lice and regulating the sebaceous glands.(This is what I used to treat my Dandruff condition)

*Basil (Ocimum Basilicum)
Basil is a low-growing herb that thrives in warm and tropical climates. Recently, research have been exploring the health benefits of basil and found it to have great anti-oxidant properties as well as anti-bacterial properties. Great for controlling stress, oily hair and promotes hair growth.

*Chamomile (Chamaemelum Nobile)
Chamomile is a mild soothing oil that is popular in a lot of herbal preparations and general tea consumption. It has antiseptic effects and can calm rashes, dry and irritated skin. It's really good for reducing the symptoms of eczema, psoriasis and other dandruff problems. It also aids in skin regeneration too.

*Myrrh (Commiphora Species)
A great oil that helps alleviate skin ailments as well as detoxifying qualities to the body. This oil can aid in expelling mucus and phlegm too. Great for dry hair, dandruff and regulating oil glands production.

*Peppermint (Mentha Piperita)
This refreshing essential oil provides cooling and antiseptic effects to your body. It helps reduce redness, itchiness and irritation. Great for itchy dandruff problems and cooling the scalp's inflammation.

*Neem (Azadirachta Indica)
Neem oil is extracted from a tree back and works wonders as a fungicide and insecticide. If you have head lice you might want to use this oil. Studies also show its potential to treat Scalp Psoriasis and Seborrheic Dermatitis without the side effects. Helps reduce scalp inflammation and itching too.

*Lavender oil
Lavender oil has been shown to increase hair growth in clinical trials where 70 % of people who massaged it into their scalps 3 times a week had a significant increase in hair regrowth. You can massage this remedy into your scalp or spray is on your scalp with a spray bottle.
Mix these oils in one cup of warm purified distilled water, Almond, Olive, or Grapeseed oil, which ever one you prefer:

Half a teaspoon of Margosa oil (very powerful anti itching oil)
Half a teaspoon of Teatree or Melaleuca oil (for a sensational tingle and bacteria blaster)
15 drops of Rosemary Essential Oil (heals & soothes plus has mild antiseptic properties)
15 Drops of Lavender Essential Oil (soothing, mildly antibiotic and very calming plus it helps your hair grow back thicker and stronger).

There you have it! God knew exactly what He was doing in Genesis 2:29 when he gave us every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of the earth, and every tree in which the fruit of the tree yeilds seeds. It's all by God's design we have natural resources available to help heal us from different conditions. I am grateful! Thank You God for always having us on your mind!

Thank you for your support! Have a great day!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

New Products!

Happy Saturday and Sunday everyone! I'm combining the two days simply because I've been cleaning all weekendend and I just didn't have time to write the post. Anyway I just want to share with you some new products that I purchased on Friday.

*Hemp Seed Oil- Stimulates hair growth.

*Cedarwood oil- A fungicide that helps fight dandruff, eczema etc...... It relieves and soothes a dry and itchy scalp.

*Almond oil- Nourishes hair, soothes cuticles, and makes hair long, healthy and strong.

*Thyme oil- Promotes hair growth.

*Lemon oil- Helps relieve dandruff, and adds lustre and shine.

*Rosemary infused Grapeseed oil- Stimulates hair growth.

All of these essential oils are very versatile and can be added to other oils. I made a braid spray by adding these ingredients with olive, tea tree, and jojoba oils. When using essential oils you only need a little and alot of carrier oils such as olive and grapeseed. Always do your research before using new products.

Thanks for your support! Have a great day!

Friday, January 15, 2010

"Cones"


Happy Friday lovely nappturals! One of the first things a Diva determined to have longhair learns is that she is using cones. "Huh What? What are cones?" might be one of the first questions asked.
Cone is short for silicone - not to be confused with silicon!
Silicone refers to a group of chemicals which are very commonly used in beauty products, be it your face cream or your hair conditioner. They are hydrophobic, are used as sealants and to provide slip. Those of you who have tried a drugstore face cream (usually with silicones) and an organic cream in comparison know the difference.

Silicones come in different types and their names reflect the different chemical structures they can have. In the ingredient list, one can identify silicones usually rather easily. They are called "Amodimethicone", "Dimethicone", etc. and now you can see why they are often abbreviated with "cone". But a "Cyclopenthasiloxane" or a "Dimethiconol" can be a cone too. Those are the cones most commonly used and if a product doesn't contain one of them, it is likely that it doesn't contain any cones at all. There is also a claim that says that there are "water soluble" and "non water soluble" cones but again, since I don't have reliable sources yet, I won't talk about that now.
Different cones have different qualities.

The second thing an aspirant longhair learns is that cones are evil.
Is it?

To understand the thing with the cones, one has to know what cones are designed for and what they do.
Cones are widely popular and can be found in a very large selection of hair care products. They have many different purposes. In shampoos, they help provide slip, so it gets easier to massage the shampoo in. In conditioners, they help with detangling the hair, keeping static down and preventing breakage by smoothing down the surface of the hair which also provides shine.
It is also said that cones are able to glue split ends (temporarily!) back together.

Sounds good, doesn't it? Where's the catch?
The problem with silicones is the fact that they aren't water soluble. It varies a bit from cone to cone, but as far as I know, removing cones from the hair is not an easy task. Cones require a strong sulfate shampoo for removal. But as you surely know, when you want to grow your hair long, it is recommended that you stop using shampoo on the length of your hair. Therefore the silicones don't get removed anymore, since only water or conditioner aren't strong enough. If you now keep applying cones to the hair, you'll inevitably get "build-up". The cones build up on the hair and will lock out moisture by clogging the hair shaft. The hair will dry out, gets tangly and dull - just what you didn't want!

The speed in which the cones will build up on the hair varies greatly from person to person and from the products used (amount of silicones in them / type of silicone - -remember, the higher an ingredient stands on the ingredient list, the more of it it contains).

The direct opponent of the silicones are (vegetable) oils. Oils can build up on the hair too, but 1) you'll notice that right away (because your hair is greasy ) and 2) oils are very easy to remove. Depending on the kind of oil (lighter oils are easier, heavier oils are harder to remove) all it takes is a good Co-Wash and the build up is gone.


Even though cons offer a couple of benefits such as detangling and shine, cones also......
1) Is likely to build up on the hair
2) Cannot be removed without Sulfate Cleansers
3) Clog the hair shaft
4) Lock moisture out of hair.

So in my opinion cones are bad! The benefits that they offer can easily be found in All natural and cones free products. But don't let me stop you from finding out what works for you and your hair. Maybe you prefer oils, cones or both find what works for you.
Here is a list od cones that you are most likely able to find in most skin and hair products.

Amodimethicone- Trimethylsilylamodimethicone- A non-curable amine silicone fluid for hair care products and decorative cosmetics. Provides water resistance.

Amodimethicone (&) C11-15 Pareth-7 (&) Laureth-9 (&) Glycerin (&) Trideceth-12-
An amine functional micro-emulsion for clear, aqueous-based hair products.

Amodimethicone (&) Trideceth-12 (&) Cetrimonium Chloride- Cationic emulsion for hair conditioning.

Behenoxy Dimethicone

Bisamino PEG/PPG-41/3 Aminoethyl PG-Propyl Dimethicone- Provides excellent hair conditioning without build-up. Ideal for use in products designed to treat colour, perm, sun and heat-damaged hair.

Bis-Phenylpropyl Dimethicone- A colourless silicone fluid with high RI, low viscosity and volatility, shine enhancement and luxurious feel.

C30-45 Alkyl Dimethicone- Superior compatibility with both silicones and organics. Can be used as a thickening agent which gives a unique silky skin feel.

Cetearyl Methicone- A soft, waxy material; excellent lubricity and spreadability.

Cetyl Dimethicone- Occlusive film forming for skin conditioners.

Cetyl PEG/PPG-15/15 Butyl Ether Dimethicone- A silicone emulsifier for use in the preparation of water-in-oil emulsions. Also offers good emulsification of paraffin oils and vegetable triglycerides.

Cyclomethicone (&) PEG/PPG-20/15 Dimethicone- For formulating water-in-oil emulsions, particularly water-in-silicone emulsions. Excellent aesthetics.

Cyclopentasiloxane- Cyclomethicone D5- Provides improved efficacy in antiperspirants and wet combing in hair conditioners.

Cyclopentasiloxane (&) C30-45 Alkyl Cetearyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer- Provides a unique feeling during rub-in followed by a soft powdery feel for an extended period. Ideal for cream to powder formulations.

Cyclopentasiloxane (&) Cyclohexasiloxane- Available in three different proportions offering low viscosity, a relatively high volatility and a cyclic structure.

Cyclopentasiloxane (&) Dimethicone- The basis for hair serums. Conditioning without build up.

Cyclopentasiloxane (&) Dimethicone/Vinyldimethicone Crosspolymer- An elastomer dispersion resulting in a smooth, highly viscous gel with a unique silky feel on application.

Cyclopentasiloxane (&) Dimethiconol- Provides a smooth, velvety feel without greasiness. Useful for skincare and hair conditioning.

Cyclopentasiloxane (&) Trimethylsiloxysilicate- Silicone resin blended with Cyclopentasiloxane. Provides water resistance.

Cyclotetrasiloxane- Cyclomethicone D4- A volatile silicone for improving skin feel in applications such as anti-perspirants.

DEA PG-Propyl PEG/PPG-18/21 Dimethicone- Enhances the performance of shampoos and conditioners with improved gloss, manageability and moisturizing properties.

Diisostearoyl Trimethylolpropane Siloxy Silicate- Highly substantive to skin, has good lubricity and spreadability. Compatible with organic oils and waxes.

Dimethicone Copolyol

Dimethicone (&) Laureth-4 (&) Laureth-23- Non-ionic silicone emulsion for 2-in-1 shampoos.

Dimethicone (&) Trimethylsiloxysilicate- Water resistant, non-tacky film, ideal for sun screens.

Dimethicone (from 1 to 1,000,000 cs)- The original silicone 'oil'. A complete range is available from the highly mobile 1-20 cs, the popular 50-500 cs and the heavier 1,000-1,000,000 cs.

Dimethiconol (&) Sodium Dodecylbenzenesulphonate- An anionic emulsion for leave-in hair products. Disperses well in aqueous preparations and gives the hair good texture.

Diphenyl Dimethicone- A heat-resistant silicone with good film-forming properties. Used as a skin conditioning and anti foaming agent.

Disiloxane- Volatile replacement for ethanol in APs and aerosols.

Hydrolyzed wheat protein/hydroxypropyl polysiloxane and cystine/silicone co-polymers- A combination of protein and silicones that posses a complex polymeric structure which cross-links on drying to form a conditioning and protective network providing protection against blow drying and heating. They also protect the hair against environmental pollutants as well as mechanical damage and can aid temporary repair of split ends.

Lauryl Methicone Copolyol

PCA Dimethicone- Functional over a broad pH range and offers excellent smoothing, conditioning and emolliency properties in many different applications.

PEG/PPG-20/15 Dimethicone- Previously referred to as Dimethicone Copolyol. A very versatile, water soluble polyether modified silicone for use in skin and hair products.

PEG-12 Dimethicone- Previously referred to as Dimethicone Copolyol. A very versatile, water soluble polyether modified silicone for use in skin and hair products.

Phenyl Trimethicone- A very popular high gloss silicone for spray-on hair products. Also provides emolliency and water repellency in skin care products.

Polysilicone-18 Cetyl Phosphate- Color-retaining conditioner for hair products. Also offers thermal protection and a slick, soft after-feel. Excellent solubility and compatibility with most surfactants.

Silicone Resin Spheres (2, 5 & 6 micron)- Fine, white spherical particles give slip and lubricity in pressed and loose powders.

Simethicone- A mixture of Dimethicone and hydrated silica, used as an antifoaming agent. Available in two grades.

Stearoxy Dimethicone

Stearyl Dimethicone

Trimethylsiloxysilicate- A solid silicone resin for decorative cosmetics. Provides water resistance.

Trisiloxane- Anti foaming and skin conditioning agent

Thanks for your support! Have a Blessed One!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Natural Hair Shrinkage and Stretching

Happy Thursday Good People. Today I gonna talk about Shrinkage and ways to stretch Natural Hair. So......Here we go!
The curls in tightly coiled, otherwise known as kinky hair can shrink up to 80% of it's actual length. Meaning that hair that's actually shoulder length when in full shrink mode can look as short as a TWA. Shrikage is despised by a lot of natural Divas, and I can understand why. But their are styles that calls for shrinkage sometimes, and their are times styles call for longer hair.

*Here are a few techniques to stretch out the curls so they can loosen up and retain their length.

*Banding
Banding is a technique that uses rubber bands or elastic hair bands (preferably) to stretch out the curls in natural hair.A section of wet hair is combed and then a hair band is placed around it in order to make a small pony tail. Next, the section is banded a few more times down the length of the ponytail to keep stretched out curls secured in place. This is repeated around the whole head and then the hair is either air-dried or dried under a hooded dryer.

*Twisting
Thin twists help to stretch out the roots, but the ends of the hair still shrinks a lot. Thicker twists usually stretch out the length of the hair, but they leave the roots un-stretched and looking a bit puffy.So whenever I make twists, I know that once my hair dries it will still look much shorter than it is, especially if I've made smaller ones.So if you want to stretch the curls further, Iwait until your hair dries, and then simply wet and then re-twist your hair again. It's a bit time consuming because your hair won't be fully stretched until after a few more times of re-wetting and re-twisting. But it is a sure way of loosening curls.

*Braiding Braids create the same stretching effect the twists do, but because three sections of hair are used for a braid, rather than two, the hair is more tightly wound so the curls won't stretch as much as they would with twists.

*Pinning and Ponytails
Putting your hair into a ponytail and the pinning to loose ends down is a great way to stretch you hair also

*Bantu Knots
The knots are created by making a square shaped part, then the roots are held while the remaining length of hair is wrapped around it. Once the hair is dry the knots are taken down.

*Heat
Another technique for stretching out tightly wound natural hair is to use heat by way of blow-drying, hot combing or flat-ironing the hair. These tools can be used to get the hair stick-straight if you're so inclined - although blow-drying can be used to just loosen up the curl. But if you choose the option for stretching out you curls I suggest you use a really good heat protectant or else you may end up damaging your hair!

But Do Know...That shrinkage is always going to happen with curly hair - whether it's loosely or tightly curled. I suggest we learn to work with our shrinkage intead spending time and money fighting against it! Love and embrace your shrinkage!

Thanks for your support! God Bless!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Herbs and Natural Hair


Happy Wednesday! I hope your week has been a blessed one so far! Well today I am talking about Herbs and Natural Hair. I've been doing some reseaxh on this because soon I want to be able to use only "All Natural" products on my hair, skin, etc.... Some of the best alternatives to prescription hair growth treatments are herbal supplements. Herbal supplements have very minimal side effects and improve health as well as stimulate hair growth. Whether you use herbs to improve circulation, halt the process of hair loss, or block the DHT(Dihydrotestosterone, which causes hair loss) hormone, herbs are highly effective.

*Here are the top five herbs recommended to help stimulate hair growth.

1.Saw Palmetto
Saw Palmetto has been used for thousands of years and has been shown to be an effective remedy in the fight against hair growth problems. Saw Palmetto helps block the hormone DHT, therefore slowing down the rate of hair loss. Saw Palmetto may be in capsule form, added to herbal hair loss formulas, or applied in oil. Whichever method you prefer, Saw Palmetto is a valuable herb in the fight against premature balding.

2.Horsetail
Horsetail helps improve circulation and blood flow. This stimulates the hair follicles and is necessary for promoting hair growth. High in Silica, Horsetail strengthens weak hair and increases its vitality. Horsetail is often added to herbal preparations that fight pattern baldness.

3.Rosemary
Rosemary will help unclog follicles and promote hair growth. Rosemary may be added to oil and massaged in the scalp. Rosemary is also a powerful antioxidant and helps fight free radicals. It is also frequently added to herbal hair remedies.

4.Siberian Ginseng
Ginseng is a wonderful herb that has many benefits. One of these is that it increases stimulation and improves circulation. This has helped those who are suffering from hair loss or weak and damaged hair. Ginseng will also remove any toxins that may be clogging your hair follicles, slowing down or stalling new hair growth. You can choose to apply Ginseng through a hair and scalp oil. You may also take Ginseng in capsule form daily. Ginseng and Saw Palmetto are the most common herbs recommended for herbal hair growth treatments.

5.Nettle
Nettle is rich in vitamins and minerals. It is also great for promoting blood circulation and helps stimulate hair growth. Nettle has also been shown to block BPH and therefore has been highly useful in the fight against hair loss.


As you can see herbs are very beneficial to our Hair. There are many many other herbs great for natural hair. Such as Algae Extracts, Marigolds, Sage, Chamomile, and Aloe. Please research any herb and speak with your physician before trying herbal remedies of your hair, especially women who are pregnant.


Thank You for your support! God Bless!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

My Apologies!

Happy Tuesday! I came to apologize, I was sooooooo busy today I had no time for blogging! But I will return tomorrow! Thanks for your support, God Bless!

Monday, January 11, 2010

I am so Missing My Hiar!


Happy Monday! AAAAAAGGGGGHHHHHHH!!!!!!! I am missing my hair so much. I am trying my best not to take these kinky twists out because my hair needs a rest. But I just miss it so much. I miss co-washing it, sealing in my moisture, and styling it! January 30th need to get here fast! I don't know how much more of this I can take!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Our Hair's Make-up and How It Grows

Happy Sunday! Today I gonna talk about the make-up of natural hair and how it grows. I've been doing a lot of research on this and found a few intresting points thats worth sharing! so here we go..............

Our hair is actually protein matter called keratin. And news is- what we see on our head, the jungle of protein that we so passionately care about, is actually `dead’. The living part of the hair s below the surface of the scalp, called follicle, which supplies these dead cells to keep our mane flowing. Our hair grows from follicles within the skin. The part of the hair inside the follicle (below the skin's surface) is known as the hair root, while the portion you see protruding from the head is the hair shaft. At the base of the hair root is the hair bulb where nutrients are received and new cells are formed.At the base of the follicle is a cluster of living cells called the papilla, which eventually forms hair. Next to the follicle is the sebaceous gland that actually keeps the hair shiny and looking vibrant. Excessive sebum activity can make hair very oily while lack of sebum activity can make it dry and lifeless. The arrector pili, a tiny muscle anchored to the follicle, respond to stimulus (fear or cold) causing them to contract and make the hair stand up straight.


The hair follicle is fed by blood circulated around it, which is why a healthy body makes great looking hair. Anemia or a fall in blood count can affect the hair. In fact one can go to the extent of saying that an unhealthy body is first reflected in unhealthy hair.


Taking nutrients from the dermal papilla, the hair bulb generates new hair cells. As these cells move up through the hair root, they mature through a process called keratinization, fill with fibrous protein and lose their nucleus. When the cell loses its nucleus it is no longer alive. By the time the hair emerges from the skin it is merely fiber made of keratinized proteins.


The fibrous protein emerging from the hair follicle as the hair shaft has a specific construction. It forms a strand with three layers: an outer covering of overlapping keratin scales called the cuticle, a middle layer of keratinized protein fibers called the cortex, and usually, a central 'core' of round cells called the medulla. A medulla is almost always found in coarse hair, and often is absent from naturally blonde hair and very fine hair.


In fact, our hair is approximately 91 percent protein, and is made up of long chains of amino acids. These chains are found within the fibers of the cortex of the hair. The amino acids of these chains are made up of the elements carbon, oxygen, hydrogen, nitrogen, and sulfur (are also the building blocks of the skin and nails) and are joined together by peptide bonds. Long chains of these peptide bonds are called polypeptide chains.




*There are three stages of hair growth: Catagen, Telogen, and Anagen.


Catagen - The catagen phase is a transitional stage and 3% of all hairs are in this phase at any time. This phase lasts for about 2-3 weeks. During this time growth stops and the outer root sheath shrinks and attaches to the root of the hair. This is the formation of what is known as a club hair.


Telogen - Telogen is the resting phase and accounts for 10-15% of all hairs. This phase lasts for about 100 days for hairs on the scalp and much longer for hairs on the eyebrow, eyelash, arm and leg. During this phase the hair follicle is completely at rest and the club hair is completely formed. Pulling out a hair in this phase will reveal a solid, hard, dry, white material at the root. About 25-100 telogen hairs are shed normally each day.


Anagen - Anagen is the active phase of the hair. The cells in the root of the hair are dividing rapidly. A new hair is formed and pushes the club hair up the follicle and eventually out. During this phase the hair grows about 1 cm every 28 days. Scalp hair stays in this active phase of growth for 2-6 years. Some people have difficulty growing their hair beyond a certain length because they have a short active phase of growth. On the other hand, people with very long hair have a long active phase of growth. The hair on the arms, legs, eyelashes, and eyebrows have a very short active growth phase of about 30-45 days explaining why they are so much shorter than scalp hair.


*Hair Shape: The amount of natural curl a hair has is determined by it's cross-sectional shape. Hair that is most similar to a circle is straight and hair that is flattened and elliptical is curly or kinky. The more circular the shaft is, the straighter it is. The more elliptical the shaft is, the curlier or kinkier the hair. The cross-sectional shape also determines the amount of shine the hair has. Straighter hair is shinier because sebum from the sebaceous gland can travel down the hair more easily. The kinkier the hair, the more difficulty the sebum has traveling down the hair, therefore the more dry or dull the hair looks.




Ok I think I'll stop here. I just wanted to give a quick look at the biology of natural hair! Thanks for your support! Have a blessed one!








Saturday, January 9, 2010

Stress and Natural Hair


Happy Saturday everyone! You know what, I am so missing my hair today! I put kinky twists in my hair at the beginning of the month, and I just miss rubbing my fingers through my hair! But I will not be taking these twists out until January 30Th. This is my protective style for the month.
To keep my hair moisturized with the twists, I put 4oz of water, 3oz of Aloe Vera juice, 1tsp Shae Butter, 1tsp Coconut oil, 1tsp Honey, 2tsp Olive oil, 2tsp Castor oil, 10 Vitamin E capsules, and 2tsp Tea Tree oil into a spray bottle and shook it really well. No the oil and water did not mix, I have to shake it really well before each use. This spray has really kept my hair moisturized and itch free!
Anyway......... Today I wanna talk about stress and the effects of it on our Natural Hair. I was just thinking soon my husband and our family will be moving to a new city, and state, and I'll be going back to work, and we have kids. So being a wife, a mother, a friend, a daughter, trying to build a business, and working can get really stressful at times. So let's just take a quick look at the affects of stress on our hair..................

The Oxford dictionary defines stress as "a demand upon physical or mental energy.' However, stress, as most people see it, is an above average demand of our energy. This demand is usually very hard to deal with. Stress puts demands on people to perform well above their capacity. This demand is very difficult to maintain without some form of relief. Despite the negative perception, stress is an everyday occurrence that affects most people at some point in their life. Following are other definitions of stress:
-- Stress is supposedly a recent phenomenon and is everywhere we turn to.
-- Stress does not feel good and cannot be experienced in pleasant situations.
-- Stress can be achieved when our problems go out of control.
-- Stress and change are related.

Stress can sometimes lead to hair loss. The human body has ways of alerting us of problems such as stress. If handled properly, stress can be managed and not lead to hair loss or other appearance related problems.
The condition of a person's hair can tell you a lot about stress levels in their lives. Happiness and serenity in a person's life will be reflected by healthy looking, shiny hair. However, those with dry, lifeless, poor hair are likely encountering a depressing situation and are struggling to adapt. When the body and our health is negatively affected (trauma, emotional stress, major illness) your hair no longer has priority for your health maintenance. It's as if your body is saying, "I've got bigger problems to worry about and take care of, I don't need to worry about hair growth right now."
Your body's built-in self healing "process" considers your other problems so important, that it concentrates on the problem and ignores your hair. "... a sudden or stressful event can cause the hair follicles to prematurely stop growing and enter into a resting phase." This is referred to as Telogen Effluvium.
Telogen Effluvium is characterized by sudden, diffuse hair loss caused by an interruption in the normal hair growth cycle. This interruption is often the result of trauma, such as chemotherapy, childbirth, major surgery, severe stress, and severe chronic illness. This trauma causes large numbers of hair follicles to enter a stage of telogen, or rest, simultaneously.
The telogen phase can last 6 to 12 weeks (and much longer if left untreated) and affects women much more then men.
The good news is that stress related hair loss (telogen effluvium) is temporary. In fact, due to the nature of the hair growth cycle, by the time you hair starts to shed heavily, your stress related problem may have already been resolved.
"The odd thing about this condition is that you’re usually over the stressful event before the hair loss even starts."
However, for many people, a major stressful event can be more lasting. At times like these, these tips for handling stress are helpful:
*Exercise. Just 20 minutes a day can produce enough endorphins to reduce stress levels.
*Write in a journal. Writing your thoughts and feeling down in a journal can help in expressing the frustrations you are keeping inside.
*Get a massage. Massage therapy can relax muscles, ease muscle spasms, increase blood flow to skin and muscles, and relieve mental and emotional stress.
*Realistic expectations. A lot of stress is caused by disappointment in ourselves and/or others. When we or others can't live up to expectations you may have, disappointment and stress can set in. If you feel this applies to you, adjust your expectations. Don’t expect everyone to be like you or behave to your code of “shoulds and oughts." And don't say yes to demands that you know will be difficult to live up to. Don’t let ego and social pressure force you into being/doing something your not.
*Trust in God to help you make the right decisions in every area of your life! He is the ultimate stress reliever!

We must simplify our lives, and make them less complicated. A lot of us need to learn how to say the word NO! Stop trying to be Superwoman! Let go and Let God! If you can't do it, Just say No! A stress free life benefits not only us, but also those around us. Our family, friends, and our jobs. So less change some things. In 2010 less attempt to live a STRESS FREE LIFE!

Thanks for your Support! Have a great day!

Friday, January 8, 2010

Products that I use!

Happy TGIF! Today I'm gonna share a quick list of products that I use, and some products that did no justice for my hair.

So Here we go........

*CONDITIONERS
1. Elasta QP Intense Fortifying Hair Conditioner- This is what I use for my Co-Washes. It's light and filled with vitamins and plant extracts. This product is a great detangler and it leaves my hair soft, manageable, and moisturized every time. I hear V05 and Suave works great for co-washing also.
2.Elasta QP Feels Like Silk Leave-In H2 leave in moisture sealing conditioner- Whew........ That's a long name. Anyway I love this stuff! This is my leave in conditioner. This is one of the first products that I spray on my hair everyday. It's great for keeping my hair detangled, smooth, soft, and moisturized.
3. ApHogee Pro vitamin Leave-In conditioner- This is my back up Leave in. Since everyone is starting to get hooked on the Elasta H2, sometimes the stores tend to run out of my favorite product so when they do, I get the ApHogee. Now this product works fairly well in my hair. It does a great job at moisturizing my hair, but it doesn't leave it as soft and silky as I would like. But it does a good job!
4. My Homemade Tropical Avocado Deep Conditioner- This all natural homemade conditioner leaves my hair soft, silky, manageable, and ultra-moisturized. (Will post recipe @ the bottom)

*SHAMPOOS
1. Elasta QP Creme Conditioning Shampoo- I rarely, rarely Shampoo my hair but when I feel I have to have Shampoo I use this one. It's a Sulfur/Sulfate free, lightweight shampoo and it leaves my hair feeling very moisturized and clean.
2. Apple Cider Vinegar Rinse- This is what I use to Clarify my hair once monthly. I simply take 1cup of vinegar and 3cups of water mix them together pour them in my hair while I'm gently rubbing and massaging my hair. Then I rinse! This is a great natural way to get the hair clean and product free without stripping and drying out the hair.
*I can also recommend using Dr. Bronners 18-in-1 Castille soap. It's all natural and it's Sulfate/Sulfur free!

*MOISTURIZERS
1. Shae Butter- This is a great all natural Whole Body Moisturizer. Great for the skin, nails, and hair. It does not clog the hair shaft allowing the hair to stay moisturized.
2.Tea Tree Oil- I used to suffer from bad dandruff, I thought I would never be able to stop using shampoos (i.e Head and Shoulders) because of it. But let me tell you, if you have bad dandruff treat your scalp to some Tea Tree Oil every day. This stuff is good at fighting dry, itchy, flaky scalps. It is a Fungus Fighter and a great Preservative.
3.Elasta QP Recovery anti-breakage oil moisturizer-This is the product I use in the last step of sealing the moisture in my hair. It's lightweight, and gives my hair a marvelous shine. It's rich in vitamins and natural oils.
4. Coconut Oil- This oil is OK in small amounts. It's only good for the hair, not the scalp, and if you use too much it will began to clog the hair shaft and prevent moisture from getting in. But it a great hair moisturizer. It doesn't weigh you hair down and it gives a great shine to your hair.
5.Castor Oil- This is a great moisturizer for the hair and scalp. It's great for growing the hair and is also for great for thinning hair. It also helps to hide damaged hair, helps with frizzy hair, it adds a natural shine, and it's help prevent damage and breakage! Great Stuff!
6.Jojoba Oil- This stuff is great at moisturizing, conditioning, and controlling brittleness, breakage, and split ends.
7. Glycerin- This product in it's pure natural state is an excellent moisturizer for smooth, soft skin and hair.
*Please note that I do Not use all of these products every day. It depends on what effect I want for the style I'm doing. Because a lot of these oils are versatile I sometimes make my own mixture by combining some of the oils.

*Gels
1. Gueye's Herbal Extra-Hold styling gel- This product is alcohol free, and encourages hair growth. It does not flake, or make your hair feel hard and crunchy.
2. Eco Styler styling gel- When I need more of a hard and controlled hold I use this product. It does not flake, but I do feel the need to rinse my hair everyday after use.

*MISC
1. Aloe Vera Juice- I like to put half water, half Aloe Juice in a spray bottle and spray it on my hair first everyday. Aloe is great for promoting hair growth, and an excellent treatment for hair loss.
2. My Homemade Protein Treatment- Because our hair is made up of proteins, our hair needs proteins. So once monthly I give my hair something it loves and needs Protein! This treatment leaves my hair soft and strong! I love it! (Will post recipe @ Bottom)
3. Vitamin E Capsules-Vitamin E is an antioxidant that encourages blood flow in the scalp area. For that reason more oxygen is supplied to the hair cells. I don't like to take the capsules orally, so I extract the oil out and put into one of my oils.
4. Biotin- This B-complex vitamin metabolizes fatty acids which are valuable growth components in the body including hair.

*Some Products that did not work for me or my hair!
1. Pantene Pro V Relaxed and Natural Shampoo, Conditioner, and Oil Moisturizer- These Products are rich in sulfur/sulfate, cones, and synthetic products. They left my hair feeling great when I first started using the products and then all of a sudden I was battling dryness, brittleness, frizz, and build-up.
2.Palmers Olive Oil Shampoo and Conditioner- Unlike Pantene Pro V, this product claims to be an Organic product. NOT! This product is also rich in Sulfate/Sulfur, Cones, and other synthetic ingredients. The same as with Pantene, the beginning results were great, but after a month I was back to fighting dry, weak, brittle hair!
3. Organic Root Stimulator Olive Oil Moisturizing Hair Lotion- The cones in the product left my hair hard and crunchy once it was dry. Also when rinsing I could tell there was product in my hair, it felt slimy and slippery! Not good!
4.Mixed Chicks Leave-in Conditioner- OK it's my fault I'm out of $20.00 for buying this product. I did Not read the ingredients before I bought it! Anyway I put this product on my hair right after I got out of the shower, OK my hair was curly, and soft at first but after my hair dried it was so hard and crispy I was scared. So I ran to check the ingredients and guess what, Amodimethicone is the third ingredient on the list. I was so upset at myself for not reading the ingredients before I purchased it! I sure did learn my lesson.

*Recipes
I'm not suggesting you use the recipes to my homemade hair products, I recommend you find whats right for you and your hair. But if you do try these recipes and they work for you then please feel free to continue to use them. I just showing you what works for me ;)

*Tropical Avocado Deep Conditioner
1 Soft Avocado
1 Soft Banana
1/2 can of Coconut Milk
2tsp Honey
1tsp Coconut Oil
1tsp Tea Tree Oil (Preservative)
-Combine all ingredients and blend until you reach a smooth and creamy consistency. Apply evenly to hair in sections(detangling hair prior to making conditioner saves a lot of time). Put a shower cap on and let conditioner sit in hair for 30-60minutes. Rinse well.

*Protein Treatment
1cup Plain Organic Yogurt
1cup Real Mayo (Salad Dressing will dry you hair out)
2 Eggs
2tsp Olive oil
-Blend until you've reached a smooth and creamy consistency. Apply to hair in sections(detangling hair prior to making this treatment saves a lot of time). Put a shower cap on and let treatment sit in hair for 30-60minutes. Rinse well.

OK you have the run down on what works and doesn't works for my hair! Now go out and find out what works for yours! Thanks for your support! May God richly bless you and yours!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Some DO's and DONT's for Natural Hair!

Happy Thursday Blessed People! Okay today I just want to share SOME (there are many) Do's and Dont's for natural hair. So................ Here we go!

* If you have any tips or suggestions please feel free to comment :)

#1. DO wash your hair in sections. This keeps your hair from Tangling.

#2. DO ONLY comb your hair when it's wet. Combing dry hair causes breakage.

#3. DO keep your hair moisturized. Seal in moisture by first adding a water based product, such as a leave in conditioner, then add a oil based product, such as shea butter, coconut or castor oil, then add a cream based product. I use Elasta QP Recovery Moisturizer which is absolutely wonderful.

#4. DO Use a denman brush or a k-cutter comb to detangle your hair. Start at ENDS then work our way up to the roots. Starting at your roots will cause breakage.

#5. DO Detangle your hair only in the shower w/ conditioner in your hair.

#6. DO cover your hair before bed with a satin scarf or bonnet. This keeps your hair from drying out during the night. Satin Pillowcases are great also.

#7.DO big plaits or twists and moisturize before bed. This will make your hair more manageable in the morning.

#8. DO Co-Wash! Co-Washing is basically conditioner washing. Most shampoos contain sulfur or sulfate (Read my blog "No Poo Thank You" for my info) which dries out the hair! Co-washing is a way to get the hair clean without using shampoos! ACV (apple cider vinger) Rinses is a great great way to clarify hair without the use of shampoos, but if you must use shampoo, try to find a sulfur-free shampoo, and use olive oil as a pre-poo (add to hair, and massage before shampooing.) I can recommend Elasta QP creme conditioning shampoo.

#9. DO Know that most of the products you used before going natural will not work on your natural hair. (I.E i used Motions hair products before going natural and they made my hair look fabulous. Now Motions does absolutely nothing for my hair!)

#10.DO NOT allow you or someone else to lift your hair (bleach it) to put color in it. Bleaching your hair severely damages it.

#11. DO NOT use products that contain petroleum or mineral oil. It only coats your hair and does not moisturize. Please stay away from those products.

#12. DO love your shrinkage!

#13. DO trim your hair at least once every 1-2 months.

#14. DO protective styles. Such as braids just to give your hair a break.

#15. DO not overuse heat. (use heat protectants when using heat)

#16. DO read the labels on products. Get to know your products and their ingredients. cosmeticsdatabase.com in a great place to start finding out what ingredients are good for your hair and which are not. Do not be decieved, do your research before trying new products.

#17. DO NOT let hataz get you down! Love your hair! Stay Natural!

#18. DO NOT towel dry your hair if you want you curls and coils to pop! Shake the water out or squeeze the water out!

#19. Do stay connected to the Natural Hair care community! Youtube, LHCF, Mowtown girl, Nappturality, MyNHCG.com all those sites are great!

#20. DO know that diet and exercise is key to growing healthy hair!

#21. Do regularly Deep Condition your hair! (I will share my Deep Conditioner on tomorrow)

#22. Do regularly do Protien Treatments. Our hair is basicly made up of protien, and when it lacks protien our hair tends to become very weak and prone to breakage. Lets keep our hair strong by giving it what it needs! Protien! (Will share my Protien treatment on tomorrow also.)

#23. Do not use products that contain Cones!!!! (i.e Silicone, Amodimethicone,Behenoxy Dimethicone, Bisamino PEG/PPG-41/3 Aminoethyl PG-Propyl Dimethicone, Bis-Phenylpropyl Dimethicone, C30-45 Alkyl Dimethicone, Cyclopentasiloxane (&) Dimethicone, Lauryl Methicone CopolyolPCA Dimethicon, Phenyl Trimethicone, etc....... There are many more.....) Theses igredients makes natural hair feel great when its wet, but once it dries it leaves the hair hard, stiff and crunchy. Cones cannot be removed by shampoo, therefore causing build-up and locking moisture out of the hair. Stay Away from the Cones! (Will do a blog on cones at a later date)

#24. Do love God, your self and others! You are beautiful! As my Best Friend says, "Love the skin that God has placed you in". Know that there is greatness inside of you!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Shea Butter and Natural Hair!


Happy Wednesday everyone, I pray all is well with you and yours. Well today I want to talk about a natural resource/product that I use on my hair and skin. This stuff is amazing and the great part is that its "All Natural"! I am talking about Shea Butter! Yes good ol' Shea Butter! It works miracles for my hair and skin and I'm absolutely positive it will do the same for you!

*So........What is Shea Butter?
Shea Butter is only found in the tropics of Africa. It is extracted from the nuts of the Shea-Karite tree which begins to bear fruit after about 15 years; and can take up to 30 years to bear a quality crop of nuts with a high content of irremovable fatty acid. It is this irremovable fatty acid that gives Shea Butter its unique healing properties and makes it far superior to cocoa butter and other vegetable butters. Traditionally, Shea Butter was extracted by people who picked the nuts, cracked them, grilled them and pounded them. They were boiled in water for hours until the Shea Butter rose to the surface. It was then scooped into gourds and left to cool and set. Shea Butter is solid at room temperature although it quickly liquefies right around body temperature. This Shea Butter is called unrefined Shea Butter or raw Shea Butter. Since Shea Butter is an all natural product, it can vary widely in quality, appearance and smell depending on where it is produced from and how it is refined or extracted. Most Shea Butter comes from West Africa. Although a more soft and smoother variety from East Africa is beginning to appear on the market.


*How can Shea Butter benefit me? Shea Butter can provide relief from everything from just dry skin to many minor dermatological diseases (if you have a serious skin condition, you should see a doctor). It has been clinically shown to provide benefits.

-Here are some of the benefits of Shea Butter for the skin:
Daily skin moisturizer (face and body)
Dry skin relief
Dry scalp
Skin rash- including diaper rash
Skin peeling, after tanning
Blemishes and wrinkles
Itching skin due to dryness
Sunburn
Shaving cream to reduce razor irritation
Small skin wounds
Skin cracks
Soften tough skin on feet (especially heels)
Stretch mark prevention during pregnancy
Minor burns
Eczema
Sun and wind protection
Even skin tone
Reduce blemishes and scarring
Eliminating scalp irritation from dryness or chemical processing
Preventing bumps after shaving
Reducing acne (especially in combination with African Black Soap)
Absorbs quickly without leaving a greasy residue
Helps restore elasticity to skin
Restores luster to hair


*How does Shea Butter benefit my hair?
Shea Butter provides moisture to dry or damaged hair from the roots to the very tips, repairing and protecting against weather damage, dryness and brittleness. It also absorbs quickly and completely into the scalp to rehydrate without clogging pores. It is particularly beneficial for processed and heat-treated hair. It is an excellent treatment for dry scalp. It restores luster to damaged hair.


So there you have it, The 411 on one of the worlds greatest natural moisturizers! God is good! Thank Jesus for the Shea-Karite Tree and all the fruit(nuts) that it bear!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

No Poo Thank you!

Happy Tuesday Good People! Part of my natural hair regimen is NO-POO(No shampooing)!


I know you may be thinking how can I not wash my hair. Well technically I'll still be cleaning my hair I just won't be using shampoo. I'll be clarifying with a ACV(apple cider vinegar) Rinse. I will discuss that on a later date. But I do want to share with you why I won't be using Shampoos.




Both Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) and it's cousin Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES) are commonly used in products that we expect to "foam up." Both chemicals are very effective foaming agents, chemically known as surfactants.




SLS and SLES are esters of Sulphuric acid- SLS is know as "Sulphuric acid monododecyl ester sodium salt," however there are more than 150 different names by which it is known. In fact SLES in commonly contaminated with dioxane, a commonly known carcinogen.




Although SLES is somewhat less irritating the SLS, it cannot be metabolised by the liver and it's effects are therefore much longer lasting.




*So why is a dangerous chemical like sodium lauryl sulfate used in our soaps and shampoos?

The answer is simple - it is cheap. The sodium lauryl sulfate found in our soaps is exactly the same as you would find it in a car wash or even a garage, where it is used to degrease car engines. In the same way as it dissolves the grease on car engines, sodium lauryl sulfate also dissolves the oils on your skin, which can cause a drying effect.
Perhaps most worryingly, SLS is also absorbed into the body from skin application. Once it has been absorbed, one of the main effects of sodium lauryl sulfate is to mimic the activity of the hormone Oestrogen. This has many health implications and may be responsible for a variety of health problems from PMS and Menopausal symptoms to dropping male fertility and increasing female cancers such as breast cancer, where oestrogen levels are known to be involved.


*The Journal of the American College of Toxicology notes that this ingredient has a "degenerative effect on the cell memebranes because of it's protein denaturing properties."

Interestingly, sodium lauryl sulfate "is used around the world in clinical studies as a skin irritant," notes the journal. The publication expressed additional concerns:
Carcinogenic nitrosamines can form in the manufacturing of sodium lauryl sulfate or by its inter-reaction with other nitrogen-bearing ingredients within a formulation utilizing this ingredient.
Other studies have indicated that sodium lauryl sulfate enters and maintains residual levels in the heart, liver, lungs and brain from skin contact. This poses the question whether it could be a serious potential health threat from its use in shampoos, cleansers, and toothpastes.
Still other research has indicated sodium lauryl sulfate may be damaging to the immune system, especially within the skin. Skin layers may separate and inflame due to its protein denaturing properties.
Although sodium lauryl sulfate is not carcinogenic in experimental studies, it has been shown that it causes severe epidermal changes in the area it is applied, indicating a need for tumor-enhancing assays.
Additional studies have found that sodium lauryl sulfate is heavily deposited on the skin surface and in the hair follicles. Damage to the hair follicle could result from such deposition.


I could go on and on about the harmful effects of Sulfate shampoos, but I think I'll stop here. Just know that the effects on long term shampoo use could be detrimental to our health, and if shampoo is a must try using a sulfate-free shampoo. I can recommend Elasta QP conditioning shampoo. Thanks for your support! Have a Blessed Day!

Eating My Way to Healthy Hair

Happy Monday everyone! Today I am saying, "Eat your way to beautiful, healthy hair". Just like your body, your hair also needs a balanced diet to stay healthy.


*Diet solution for dry and brittle hair:
If your hair is dry and breaks easily, it is probably a lack of essential fatty acids. By including plenty of good sources of essential fatty acids in your diet you can give your hair back its strength and lustre.
You can find these essential fatty acids in oily fish such as tuna, sardines, trout, salmon, herrings and mackeral. Also in seeds, nuts, olives and avocados. You should try to eat four servings of oily fish a week.
Sprinkling flaxseed oil and pumpkin seeds over your morning cereal is another great way to get these much needed essential fatty acids in your diet.


* Remember: To keep your hair well hydrated, be sure to drink six to eight 8-ounce glasses of water every day!


*Another nutrient important for hair strength and growth is trace mineral silica. Silica is vital to the strength of hair, and can stop hair breakage, unfortunately many of the foods we eat in the western world lack this mineral. Through food processing and chemical soil treatments, trace minerals are rare in our diets.
When possible, always choose organic produce. Foods that are rich in silica are rice, oats, lettuce, parsnips, asparagus, onion, strawberry, cabbage, cucumber, leek, sunflower seeds, celery, rhubarb, cauliflower and green, leafy vegetables.


*Diet solution for greasy and lanky hair:
A lack of vitamin B in ones diet can lead to oily, greasy hair. To fight off greasy hair, be sure to eat lots of whole grains, nuts, seeds, dairy products, eggs, wheatgrem, legumes and green, leafy vegetables. These are all great sources of B-complex vitamins.
Also steer clear of oily foods where possible.

*Diet solution for hair that is starting to thin and fall out:
Thinning hair or hair loss may be a sign of iron deficiency. Be sure to eat plenty of iron rich foods, such as red meat(optional), eggs, legumes, wholegrain cereals, dried fruits and green, leafy vegetables.


*Since hair is composed mostly of protein, your hair will most likely respond well to the addition of high protein foods such as meats (optional), eggs, cheese, beans, seeds and nuts. These protein-rich foods can help reinforce the hair follicles and prevents the hair from falling out.
There is some evidence suggesting soy protein helps stimulate growth, so switch to soy milk and include some tofu, miso and soy beans in your diet.


*Vitamin E is found in green, leafy vegetables, nuts and grains and can also help hair loss. Hair loss can also be a sign of thyroid dysfunction. To stimulate the thyroid gland, eat foods rich in iodine such as seafood and kelp.


*Also including iron and B vitamins in your diet will help. Stick to a diet rich in antioxidants - fruit, vegetables and tea - to help slow the aging process in general.


*Foods, Vitamins and supplements to help hair growth
Hair is mostly protein, so nutritionists advise those wanting healthy hair to eat well balanced diets that include healthy proteins, along with foods high in vitamin B, C, E, A and K.
Your hair will most likely respond well to the addition of high protein foods such as meats (optional), eggs, cheese, seeds, beans and nuts. Fish has good protein as well as essential fatty acids and natural oils.
Vitamin B - Green vegetables, beans, sunflower seeds, nuts and peas.
Vitamin C - Citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, limes, melons and berries.
Vitamin E - Avocados, rice bran, nuts, dark green vegetables, legumes and whole grains.
Vitamin A - Carrots, sweet potatoes, squash, broccoli, cantaloupe and apricots.
Vitamin K - Seafood, dairy, figs, asparagus, broccoli, lettuce, brussel sprouts, cabbage, dark green leafy vegetables, oatmeal, soybeans, wheat, yogurt, egg yolks and liver(Which I do not recommend eating).




*Food is a blessing from God. Exodus 23:25(NKJV) says, "You shall serve the Lord your God, and He shall bless your bread and water. And I will take the sickness away from the midst of you." God wants us to enjoy our food. Here's a quick look at some foods He made to bless our bodies..........




*Fresh Fruits and Veggies-At least half of what you eat should be living foods, perferably organic fruits and veggies. It is an established fact that the more fruits and veggies you eat, the lower your chance of heart disease, cancer, and many other health problems.


*Good Fats- Yes, there is such a thing as good fats. Our bodies need fat! The good types of fat heal the body and are necessary. We should eat fat every day for the health of our heart, brain, skin, hair and every part of us. Good fat nourishes and strengthens cell membranes. Good fats include..........


>Monosaturated fats- Found in cold-pressed olive oil, organic peanut butter, advocados, olives, macadamia nuts, and especially almonds, walnuts, and hazelnuts.


>Omega 3 fats- Found mainly in cold-water fish, some marine mammals, and algae(seaweed).


>Flaxseed oil




To learn more about Good and Bad foods, please visit http://www.drcolbert.com/ for a list of books, and other material on health! Thanks for you support! Have a Blessed day!

The truth about Chemical Hair Relaxers

Happy Sunday everyone! Today I wanted to share with you a little of what I researched about Chemical Hair Realxers.................

*What You Need to Know About Chemical Hair Relaxers:
Hair breakage, hair thinning, lack of hair growth, scalp irritation, scalp damage, hair loss. These are just some of the complaints from many who experience problems due to the misuse of chemical hair relaxers. In fact, the FDA lists hair straighteners and hair dyes among its top consumer complaint areas. Yet, in so many stores around the country, chemicals are available for everyone to use, without much instruction, a powerful process which transforms the very chemical makeup of the hair strand. Before beginning any hair treatment, especially one that introduces chemicals to our hair, we owe it to ourselves to be well informed. Armed with a better understanding of this process, we will be able to make good decisions with regard to our hair and scalp care.

*Hair Relaxers: Hair Discovers Lye
His name was Garrett Augustus Morgan and he was born the seventh of eleven children of former slaves. He is best known for his invention of the automatic traffic signal and gas mask. But it was around 1910 that he stumbled upon what would become his contribution to the hair care products industry and what would pave the way for several other entrepreneurs and manufacturers over the next hundred years.
While working in a sewing machine repair shop attempting to invent a new lubricating liquid for the machine needle, it is widely believed that Morgan wiped his hands on a wool cloth, returned the next day, found the woolly texture of the cloth had “smoothed out”, and set out to find how the liquid chemical had changed the texture as it had. He experimented on an Airedale dog, known for their curly textured hair, and the effect was successfully duplicated.
Morgan then tried his lubricating liquid invention on himself, called it a “hair refining cream”, and thus patented the first chemical hair straightener. He founded a personal grooming products company which included hair dying ointments, curved-tooth pressing combs, shampoo, hair pressing gloss, and the one that started it all: the “G.A. Morgan's Hair Refiner Cream” (advertised to “Positively Straighten Hair in 15 Minutes”).

*"Lye" or "No Lye": The Truth
Sodium Hydroxide is the strongest type of principal chemical used in some chemical relaxers because it provides the most long lasting and dramatic effects. However, this same sodium hydroxide is found in drain cleaners which well demonstrates the strength of this chemical. It is what is used in products that are referred to as “lye” relaxers. The strength varies from a ph factor of 10 to 14. With higher ph, the faster the straightening solution will take hold, but the more potential the damage.
Guanidine Hydroxide is the other common option of relaxer chemical used today. This is what is referred to as “no-lye” relaxers. This label can be misleading to some consumers. It does not imply that there aren't any strong chemicals used or that the chemicals used are somehow less potentially damaging. Some have mistakenly thought that with “no-lye” relaxers there are less steps and all the worry of chemical hair straightening is removed. Although this type of chemical hair relaxer can be less damaging than its counterpart, the hair and scalp should be in top condition before attempting treatment, and this type also requires special care when applied.

*Things Everyone Needs to Know: The Do's / The Don'ts BEFOREHAND
How can chemicals “relax”, or straighten hair? Well first of all, as assumed, the chemical would need to be potent enough to do so. Both lye and “no lye” relaxers are very strong chemicals that work in the same manner by changing the basic structure of the hair shaft. The chemical penetrates the cortex or cortical layer and loosens the natural curl pattern. This inner layer of the hair shaft is not only what gives curly hair its shape but provides strength and elasticity. Once this process is performed it is irreversible.
This process which produces the desired effect of “straighter” hair at the same time leaves hair weak and extremely susceptible to breaking and further damage. One must keep in mind that relaxers do not help the hair, but actually strip it. So by applying chemicals to the hair, even if it is to achieve a desired effect, is never really to the benefit of your hair health. Due to this it is first strongly recommended that it be applied only under the direction of a haircare professional with a record of success with healthy haircare and chemical straightening, and that the client regularly obtains conditioning treatments before and after the process.

I once heard someone say "When we know better, we do better!" I hope that's true in this case. Thanks for your support! Have a Blessed day!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Natural: Why Me?

Happy Saturday everyone! Today I just want to share with the world why I chose to become natural! I chose to become natural because I needed to find out who I was. I had become a person that was superficial, and imitation. Relaxed, and fake hair, fake nails, fake character! I needed to meet myself and find out what type of person I truly was. The Year I started to go natural is the same year I gave my life to Christ! Without Him, getting to know me would have been impossible! So my Natural Hair Journey has been very spiritual for me. It still is! No, I am not my hair, but I feel when you look at my hair you get a glimpse of who I truly am. Naturally beautiful, strong, powerful, and honest! I am Daughter of the Most High, Yes I am Royalty!

I've started teaching my daughter to embrace who she is at a really young age. She's 7 now and she will quickly tell you that she is beautiful, inside and out, and that God didn't make any mistakes when He made her! So it doesn't matter what the world says about her skin color or hair, she knows that in God's, her mommy's and daddy's eyes she is beautiful. I believe we as parents should make sure that our children never lose sight of who they really are. We should teach our children to embrace their culture at a early age, so that when they're older they won't feel lost and only merely existing! I've been there!

Thanks for your support. Know that there IS greatness inside of you! Have a Blessed day!