Friday, March 28, 2014

Wash Day -1 week post

Initial texture after co-wash
After a week of silky straight hair I was ready for a wash day last weekend. I was happy to retain a lot of length from my last stretch, but I am always paranoid that my stylist did not leave me enough texture. I was pleased to find out that I was left with a nice amount a texture, which was very consistent with my last relaxer in December. This week was my 2nd and last heat pass for this stretch, so I can enjoy my hair for 2 weeks before I return to the wigging challenge.

After doing hot yoga on Saturday I did a quick co wash with Hello Hydration by Herbal Essences, after doing a quick coconut oil pre poo. I let my hair air dry and kept goddess braids in my hair until my wash day a few days later.

  • I started my wash day with a 1 hour pre-poo using Coconut Oil. After abandoning EVCO for so long, I'm glad I came back to it this last stretch. It is really great with detangling and controlling tangles during shampooing.
  • Washed with Organix Awapuhi Ginger Shampoo and lathered twice. This has pretty much been a staple, it does a great job of cleaning my hair with stripping and tangling. 
  • Once I got out of the shower, I t-shirt dried for about 10 minutes. Then when I applied my deep conditioner (Silk Dreams Vanilla Silk Cream Moisture Dream), I separated my hair into 3 parts and focused the conditioner on the ends. Sadly, that was probably my last application since I still have not ordered more Silk Dream products :/. I left the conditioner on overnight because it was late and I needed to be up early the next day.
  • The next morning, I rinsed the conditoner out of my hair. I followed the rinse with my smoothing conditioner, Paul Mitchell's Super Skinny Daily Conditioner and left it on for 3-5 minutes. 
  • After rinsing, I t-shirt dried for about 15 minutes and followed with my leave-ins. My leave-ins this week were Aphogee Keratin & Green Tea Restructorizer and Paul Mitchell's Super Skinny Serum. I continued to air-dry for another 30 minutes
  • Since I was flat ironing this week I used my Silk Elements Heat protector before lightly blow drying my roots. I separated my hair into 4 parts and used a paddle brush with my blow dryer. I really hate blowing drying because my arms always get tired, I'm so glad my blow drying days are far and few since being on a hair journey. 
    After blow-drying
  • Finally I flat ironed after applying another coat of my heat protectant on a medium heat setting. Unfortunately I was in such a rush to get out the door that I did not get pictures of the final result. It was very full and thick like a press and curl lol. I've long given up on trying to achieve salon silky results and I actually love my hair both ways. I can never get the body that my stylist gives my hair, but she never gets the fullness that I do. Either way it was a successful wash day(s).

Monday, March 17, 2014

Relaxer Update 2.1- first relaxer of the year

Hair is my hobby :)
On Saturday March 15th I relaxed my hair at 12.5 weeks post. This year I will be sticking to 12 weeks to get me through my wig challenge for the year. Anyway, I visited my regular stylist back home with detangled and pre-pooed hair. I meant to time the application of the relaxer but I always forget to look at the time when she first begins lol. She quickly applied the relaxer and even though I experience NO BURNING, I was anxious to get to the sink because I wanted to keep a little texture.

The relaxing experience was great, I have no complaints and my scalp does not feel bothered. My last relaxer left my scalp feeling a little tight and raw, but I believe I was not oiled properly. After she neutralized me, I went under the dryer with a protein treatment for about 30 minutes. From there she rinsed and blow dried my hair, then proceeded to style. The one complaint I do have from my visit is the fact that she blow dries my hair while it is still dripping wet. Personally, I hardly ever blow dry my hair, so it makes me cringe when she does this.

7 months since hair cut & no more layers
 Progress over 7 months/ official length check tee- between lines 2 & 3
Once my hair was straightened out my stylist cleaned up my hemline to give it a nice clean look. I wouldn't considered it a trim, but my front was a lot longer than the rest of my hair and she even it out a bit. My ends are still looking great, and I feel like I am retaining a lot of length each stretch even with the light trims each relaxer. In my opinion I am very close to shoulder length hair, and I will be willing to claim SL around my next relaxer in June.

My next stretch will consists of...
1. 12 week long stretch ending in June
2. Wigging weeks 2-12
3. Continuing to  apply castor oil to edges & pre-poo with hemp and coconut oil
4. Washing in braids beginning around 4 weeks post*
5. Continuing to take silica supplements*
6. Alternating each wash day with shampoo and a cleansing conditioner*
*New things I'm taking from the last stretch

Friday, March 14, 2014

Last Weeks of my Stretch!

11 weeks post washing in braids
This weekend I will relaxing my hair at a little over 12 weeks post relaxer! Since cutting my hair in August, I have slowly been extending the amount of time I stretch my relaxers. I did not want to do extremely long stretches with really short hair so I've finally made it back to 12. I will be updating soon on the results :)
After rinsing out DC... Back is catching up with front

These last two weeks it has been s0 hard to keep my hands out of my hair lol. Am I the only one who is guilty of playing in their new growth? I did something a little different in my wig prep this week instead of cornrows I put my hair in 2 strand twists to keep the new growth stretched before my relaxer this weekend. I've also been loving washing my hair in braids, especially when I have about 2 inches of new growth in some sections. I've been learning the less I manipulate my hair the better off it is.

To prep for my relaxer this weekend, I took down my two strand twists and detangled my hair with my Mane and Tail Detangler. The only oil I had at my parent's house was castor oil so I smothered the ends with that to protect my ends from overlapping. After 10 weeks of wigging I am sooo ready to wear my hair out for 2 weeks before I begin wigging again. Looking forward to my relaxer update!!!

Friday, February 28, 2014

Wash Day 9 weeks Post!

This post is actually from last weekend but I'm just now finding the time to post :/. Anyways, I have 3 more weeks until I relax at 12 weeks post, and so far the Wig Challenge has been going great. I am currently rocking a wavy u-part that I installed at 8 weeks post. The wig has combs attached and I remove it at night to moisturize and seal my braids.

This week I pre-pooed overnight with coconut oil, and the night before I detangled and separated with Mane n'tail detangler using my Hercules Sagemann comb. For the first time I decided to keep my hair braided throughout the entire wash day, and  I braided my hair into 8 braids.

My "hard protein"
The next morning I kept the braids in while I "washed" my hair using and ACV and water mixture on my scalp. I'm big on recycling items in my house for other uses so I chose to use this contact solution bottle lol.

ACV water mix 1part acv 2 part H2O
I had yet to do a hard protein treatment this stretch so I decided to use the ORS Replenishing Pak for 2 hours while still in braids.

Before rinsing out my hair I un-did the braids so that i could rinse out all the products. I followed up my deep conditioner with my smoothing conditioner, Paul Mitchell Super Skinny Daily Conditioner and left that in for about 5 minutes.

shed hair after air-drying
Once my hair was rinsed out I realized I did not like how "un-clean" my hair felt. Next time I try the ACV I will look into a "cleansing conditioner" so that I'm not using shampoo but I'm still cleaning my hair. I t-shirt dried and air dried my hair as usual. Once my hair was about 80% dry I began my braid pattern for the curly u-part wig I am currently rocking.
Wet n- wavy install

It was overall a decent wash day with very little shedding or tangles for 9 weeks post!

Monday, February 3, 2014

Ordered my Hercules Sagemannn Seamless Comb!

It's has been awhile since I posted a washday post, but I was excited to share how I liked my new comb. This week I am 6 weeks post relaxer and I have 6 more weeks to go. My new growth has remained unbelievably soft due to my homemade moisturizer. The past few weeks I have kept my hair braided underneath my wigs until washday, moisturizing and sealing as needed. This regimen has proven to work so well the last couple of months, that I am going to be doing a year long wig challenge in 2014! I will be doing a whole separate post on wigs sometime this month.

DETANGLE: I started by taking down the four braids that my hair had been in since Monday. I carefully detangled my hair using my new Hercules Sagemann 5580 seamless comb. My hair was pretty damp from my hot yoga class, so I did not use any products to detangle. I lost an average amount of hair, but the process was significantly shorter and I didn't hear any breaking of strands.

PRE-POO: I separated my hair into quadrants and slathered coconut oil to each section. I used a plastic cap to cover my head while I waited around for about 30 minutes. 

WASH: I washed with Organix Awapuhi Ginger Shampoo after I rinsed out the coconut oil. I am looking to add another moisturizing shampoo because most of mine are clarifying. 

TREATMENT: Every two weeks or so I try to incorporate a light protein treatment into my regimen. Since the beginning of my journey I have been using Aphogee's 2 minute Reconstructor which I used this week after rinsing out my shampoo.

DEEP CONDITIONING: After squeezing out the the excess water from my hair, I used my favorite deep conditioner Kera Care Humecto.  I deep conditioned for about an hour while I slept for awhile.

SMOOTHING: After deep conditioning I rinsed out my hair and followed with Paul Mitchell's Super Skinny Daily Treatment. I usually leave the treatment on for a few minutes while I finish my regular shower activities. (3-5 mins)

April Lace Wigs- Review coming soon
DRYING: I t-shirt dried my hair while I slept some more lol.. My workout had my so exhausted that day.. I applied my regular leave ins Aphogee Green Tea Restructorizer and Elasta QP's leave-in. I separated my hair into the same quadrants as earlier while I detangled each section with my new seamless comb. At 6 weeks post I lost very little strands and the detangling process went a lot smoother.

STYLING: Lastly, I braided my hair in 4 braids to fit underneath the wig I'm currently wearing. It's about time I either make or order a new wig, but for now it's getting the job done:)

Saturday, February 1, 2014

LLL Anniversary!!!

It has officially been one year since I first started this blog!!! I have enjoyed documenting the trials of my hair journey. I am surprised by how much I enjoy blogging and I plan to make more time to blog this year. Reading hair blogs is definitely one of my guilty pleasures and enjoy sharing my trials with others.

After a year of blogging I am ready for a new clean look to begin our year. This month (January) has been spent changing the face of my blog. I have so many posts in my drafts that I am hoping to be able to share soon.

  Finally, I love interacting with you all and receiving comments.Loving my hair and looking forward to another year of blogging :)

Thanks so much for reading and following along on my journey. HHJ!

Monday, January 6, 2014

New Year's Hair Goals

Wigging on NYE 2014
I can truly say I had an amazing year in 2013. I saw a lot of personal growth and met a lot of goals that I set for my self. From school, work, skin, hair, and physically I set out goals and met them. I have learned a lot that I would like to take with me in 2014.

What's to come in 2014??

1. Makeover BLOG: A year ago this month, I started blogging and it has been a great experience. There were a few months that I barely posted, but I am aiming for 3 posts a month this year. Also this month I am going to be doing a whole makeover for LLL because it's time to freshen it up.

2. FOUR Relaxers: I relaxed in February, May, August, October, and December of 2013. This year I am aiming to relax once every 3 months. 12 weeks post is my limit and I do not want to go past that.

3. QUARTERLY TRIMS: Ever since cutting my hair in August, (Which was the best thing I did for my hair all year!) I have fallen in love with my ends. I want to maintain the health of my ends to my best ability. Who knew that people would be complementing me on my healthy ends after all the troubles I've had with them.

4. WIGGING: Since my cut I've been experimenting with wigs to help protect my hair. Wigs are so far my favorite protective style. They allow me to have access to my hair, and they still look amazing :) I am taking the plunge and wigging about 90% of the year, only wearing my hair out to relax.

5. PURCHASING: Seamless comb, Steamer, New Flat Iron?? (sedu/ babybliss)

No length goals! Just to enjoy growing my NL hair out. BTW Taraji is the short bob Queen, she just gives me sooo much life.