Manetabolism by The Mane Choice

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In addition to my new product: Emu Oil, I also purchased Manetabolism™ Vitamins 2-Month Supply  and the Green Tea & Carrot Deep Conditioning Mask™ from The Mane Choice: . I wanted to try a supplement that helps hair growth and I looked into a few and decided that I would go with this one. I started taking these on August 5th. I take two per day (not always at the same time, but within that day, eg: 1 in the morning and 1 by evening/night time). At first I took them whole but I have a hard time swallowing large supplements. These ones actually floated in my mouth so I would do a little distraction dance and try to swallow them down. That took forever. So I decided to open the capsule and extract the powder to dissolve it into liquid and drink it instead. Fortunately, these plastic-textured, transparent capsules come apart very easily and the powder just comes out. This method has worked better for me. The powder doesn’t have much of a bad smell or taste surprisingly so I will continue to dissolve and drink these supplements instead of popping them down my throat whole.

I will be looking for a few things while taking these: Side effects and bodily changes such as acne for example, and on the positive side, hair growth. I drink a lot of water throughout the day, as you must with these supplements. And I plan to take down my summer braids and measure my hair length this weekend so that I can track the growth and progress of my hair by the end of my two month supply. I look forward to using the Green Tea and Carrot DC Mask as well and incorporating Emu Oil into my regimen too. Sometime I fall off on taking care of my hair, especially when it is in braids, but I’m getting back on the horse and giving my hair the TLC it deserves from my neglect this summer. Anyhow, stay tuned for future updates on my journey and hair health and growth progress!

 

x0x0
Sarahdee

What is Beauty?

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My definition of beauty:

A genuine smile that emits an overflow of carefree joy, humility and confidence from within. She will naturally radiate a glow from a genuine smile and that is simply beautiful to me.

ATTENTION:

I’ve come across social media pages that have the words, “beauties, gorgeous females, etc.” in their titles or page descriptions. I’ve realized the the images posted on these pages have commonalities in appearances. For example, long hair, curly hair, straight hair, or simply pit, easy-to-manage hair. [NOTE: My interest to exclaim this comes from my observation of lack of natural hair “beauties,” 4b/4c hair type, to be specific.] These pictures I would consider to be attractive and having sex appeal, but that is not to say that these women are not beautiful by any means. My belief is just that beauty lies far deeper than skin, than the surface level of looks and appearances. It is something to be search for and found. It is an energy to be felt. It is not found instantly in the blink of the eye like attraction and appeal.

The words beauty and beautiful are being wrongly interchanged with gorgeous, sexy, and attractive, in my opinion. We need to look deeper for real beauty, stare a bit longer, probe our thoughts and decide the meaning of beauty for ourselves. It is beyond a pretty face and easy-to-manage hair. Nonetheless, all women have beauty to be found within and brought out. We are Go’s precious creations, a jewel and gift to man. And I am sharing my opinion and feelings in hopes for the future, that good looks and sex appeal not be glorifies as beauty, impose on beauty, interchanged with beauty nor overshadow or redefine beauty. That is all.

 

xoxo
Sarahdee

Long Hair, Who Cares?!

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Recently, I was on vacation and for the latter half of my stay I put my hair in large havana twists. It looked so natural that people–black people, surprisingly, could not tell that it wasn’t my hair. I was stopped many times and asked if this was my real hair, or how long did it take to grow? I was complimented and admired with, your hair is so beautiful, I love your hair. I had never gotten so many compliments on a hairstyle before. Moreover, every single person, with the exception of one, were men! Can you believe that??! Black men, asking me, a black woman, if this is my real hair! I didn’t know how to feel about this.. Happy? Amused? Offended?

After a while, I studied the situation and actually felt some kinda way, which I cannot describe in one word. I was not angry at the men who asked if this was my real hair per se, but I became conscious of the ideation of long hair seeming to be more admirable than short hair. It was as if being natural was no longer the problem of being excluded in worldly beauty, but now having shorter, natural, is what is specifically overlooked.

I began to feel as though we, as black people, did not entire break the chains of mental slavery. And I am not saying it is our fault. I believe that we had a breakthrough but it needs to go a step further. Yes, we’ve come far with the return of natural tresses, but many of us are still seeking length for beauty. We need to evaluate our reasons for desiring long hair. Some of us may feel inadequate or substandard having not attained long hair length goals. We protective style to cover up our “ugly phase” aka short hair and take hair pills to promote growth for long lengths. Now, if you are doing certain things for hair health, carry on, I support that!

However, from studying the encounters from my trip, I’ve concluded that there is still this ideation in society, that long hair is more attractive. This social construction of beauty was lurking in my subconscious for a long time and I hadn’t realized it until I was probed by these men. It had been whispering to me ever since I became natural, and long hair was my desire. Once I did the big chop, all I wanted was length, and then health was close for a second focus. Basically, I made length more important than health which really didn’t work out because heathy hair is actually what causes length (reduced breakage, etc). Point is, I desired long hair, all my life. But don’t get my wrong, I felt beautiful with my short natural hair as well. The problem was I saw it as a phase and I wasn’t content with staying in that phase. It was meant to be a passing and not a permanancy.

Today, I still struggle with my hair at its short/medium length. I struggle with natural protective styling and finding the time to care for my hair. But now being fully aware of the feelings that lurked in my subconscious for a long time, I plan to be more conscientious and loving to my hair. I plan to work on my self-esteem and self-acceptance. Having confidence as a natural is one thing, but one should decipher whether that is true confidence or wall of delusion and denial around societal standards deeply ingrained in your reasons for your hair goals..

#foodforthought

x0x0,
Sarahdee

Peruvian Straight Birthday Hair!

A couple months ago, I started making a wig for my birthday, I used close to 4 bundles of Peruvian straight hair (18″ 20″ 22″ 24″) which I purchased from an Aliexpress vendor called Hot Hair. The quality and construction of this hair was not the best. I almost didn’t wear it for my birthday because I was very unhappy with it.

I also added a Peruvian straight silk based closure to the top for styling versatility.

The wig is made onto a breathable cap which I also purchased from Aliexpress.

These caps are by far my favorite for wigs because my scalp and hair can breathe underneath it. I’ve used mesh caps, and spandex caps before, and now I’ve finally made a wig on a breathable cap. It makes washing and moisturizing so much easier than any other cap. The main reason why I prefer this cap above any other is because I sew my wigs on. I do not like having to take on and off a wig every night at all, nor do I like it clipped onto my hair because it pulls and gives me headaches. I prefer low maintenance protective styles and therefore I sew my wigs on and take them off when it’s time for a change weeks to months later.

Currently, I am still rocking this wig and making the best of it. I will keep up with this low maintenance protective style until the weekend of May 10th which marks 3 years since my Big Chop!! I plan to finally straighten my natural hair (carefully), for the very first time then, to celebrate the occasion! =D

I didn’t want to make a long post this time, so the rest of the details on on my Peruvian straight Birthday hair can be found on my newest Youtube upload here.

xoxo
Sarahdee

Fall | Winter Protective Style Challenge UPDATE

Greetings!

It has been quite some time since I’ve last posted so I owe a major update to you guys today!

Loc Extensions

I know, I know… I’ll explain ^^^^^, but let’s backtrack and jog our memories for a little..

I sort of flunked my protective style challenge in October due to an interview..
Tried to make up for it by redoing my mini twists after and rocking my Allegra wig..
Allegra didn’t last for too long, I got bored of her quickly-in less than a week, so I exchanged her with my Peruvian curly Vanessa wig..
Rocked Vanessa for the first half of November..
Took down Vanessa and my twists for wash day Nov. 16th&17th..
**Length checked my hair** And it is noticeably longer by about an inch and a half!! =D Yay to LOW MANIPULATION!! It works!

Now that we are all caught up, here’s my protective style update today!
I installed loc extensions on Sunday and Monday earlier this week, November 17th and 18th. This was my third time doing loc extensions and it took me a lot less time than ever before. Over the course of these two days, the total amount of hours I spent doing my hair was in between 11 to 12 hours; as opposed to 3 whole days like the first time I did them. Whew! I’ve come a long way! lol

What I did this time around was pre-twist my own hair on Sunday as a preparation for the loc extensions. Then on Monday, I added the locs. This time, my locs were 10x lighter than the first time I did them. Because this time, I did not pre-twist my own hair with extension hair for length. the extra hair was what added the extra heaviness and bulk the first time around. I did not like that so much because it put a strain on my neck and on my hair from the roots. Heavy hair is not fun! Instead, I coiled the Marley hair around my hair and long strands of the Marley hair for length–added more when necessary. I must say, I am getting better with the trials and errors of doing locs and each time gets better and better. I am totally satisfied with the outcome this time and plan to keep these in until Christmas/New Years time to continue my Fall & Winter Protective style challenge.

Loc Luvin’

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Fall is here! And I welcomed it with season appropriate attire, hence the dark colors, while commemorating Summer with a splash of bold lip colors and a fierce hairstyle!

This past Saturday, I styled my sister loc extensions into large bantu knots. It was a fun, daring and edgy styling choice I decided to try after seeing a picture on Instagram of a woman’s locs in bantu knots. It was so beautiful and different that I had to try it on my extensions.  I must say, it came out pretty well considering that mine are extensions which are not as flexible and regular loc’d hair.

Sister Loc Bantu Knots

Sister Loc Bantu Knots

And to go along with my daring hairstyle, I took the time to try something new with makeup. I created a lip ombre that I fell in love with! On the outer, I used one of my favorites, NARS Pure Matte Lipstick in Volga from Sephora; and on the inner, Wet n Wild Don’t Blink Pink 966 from my local Walgreens.

Lip Ombre

Lip Ombre

For more pictures on my Sister Locs and Bantu Knots, click here to visit my Loc Extensions Hair page!

Sister Loc Extensions

I came,
I saw,
I conquered!

Yes!! Yessss!! Well, not quite, lol but that’s how I feel about my new do!! These are loc extensions below. I attempted to do Sister loc extensions and this was the outcome.

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I challenged myself often when it comes to my own hair. I like to be creative and different and standing out with my looks. I have a strong sense of determination when it comes to trying new hairstyles. And when I set my mind on doing something, I get it done.

These Sister locs took the weekend to complete to entire process which includes washing and moisturizing my hair and pre-twisting it to prepare it for the locs. This is my second time doing loc extensions so I knew what to expect and how to prepare for them Here is what I used:

3 packs of Marley hair (I used 2.5)
Scissors

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..Yup, that’s it. That’s all I needed this time. Last time I did my loc extensions, they were long and very heavy and required about 8 packs of Marley hair. The difference between then and now is that I didn’t add Marley hair to my pre-twists.

So, here are the specs..

I used a color 27 Marley braid hair for each twist. Then, half way through, I discovered some bleach blonde kinky hair in my hair closet. I added some of those strands to twist the front for highlights. (I was super excited to find this because I didn’t think I had any left). It’s hard to find this color in beauty supply store nowadays. I’ve had this left over hair since high school days!

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Old Left over Blonde hair | Color 27 Marley hair

The ENTIRE process took the ENTIRE weekend. I took down my Havana Twists and washed my hair on Friday after getting caught in a downpour, which was quite fine because I was going to wash my hair that day anyway. I used Kinky Curly Come Clean to cleanse and Shea Moisture Deep Treatment to condition. I dried my hair in an old tee-shirt (to reduce frizziness/smooth hair cuticle and reduce chances of breakage). Then I moisturized my hair using the LOC method. LOC stands for liquid, oil, cream. This ensure that one seals in moisture within the strands of the hair.

Here’s my interpretation of the LOC method:

The liquid (L) is usually water (damp hair) and/or a leave-in conditioner (for those with thirsty hair)
My hair was damp and I added a combination of some of my favorite leave-ins: Shea Moisture Balancing Conditioner (technically not a leave-in) and Curl Junkie Smoothing Lotion
The oil (O) is any essential oil of your choice
I used Jojoba oil, and Nubian Heritage Grow and Strengthening Serum
The cream (C) can be any butter like Shea or Mango butter (or even a leave-in cream for those with not-so-thirsty hair)
I used Shea butter as my sealant. She is more than enough for my thirsty hair. It keeps it soft.

But I digress,

After moisturizing, I two-strand twisted my hair into very small twists. This took 5 hours on Friday.
Saturday, I began the locs. (there are a lot of YouTube how-to’s on loc extensions if you need a visual on how to start them) I took a strand of Marley hair and split it in half. (A whole strand isn’t needed to coil and cover your hair, also more hair creates bulk and heaviness). I held a part of the Marley hair with my own hair and wrapped the other part of the hair around it tightly in a coil all the way to the ends which then I folded on itself after reaching the desired length. I wrapped it upward until it disappeared. I did it this way so I did not have to burn my ends nor dip it in hot water. I wanted to avoid that because my actual hair lied only a few inched beneath the locs and I wouldn’t want to miss and burn my hair with fire or hot water. Also, burning the hair makes the ends hard and it pulls on clothing or scratch the skin. I find that to be unpleasant.
I completed a little over half of my hair on Saturday. This took about 12 hours.
Sunday, I finished the remainder of my hair. This took about 2 hours.

In total, it took just under 20 hours to complete.

Given that these loc extensions are much smaller, it was a major challenge, especially because I did it on my own head. On Saturday, my pace became slower during the latter of the 12 hours because I was super tired. I ended up straining my shoulder with the constant repetitive movement of my arm while coiling the hair around mine. Also, my wrists and fingers are tight and sore. So, with the pain I went through for this and the time invested, I have no choice but to MAKE SURE that this style lasts me 6 weeks. No excuses.

Overall, I am very satisfied with the outcome of my sister loc extensions! They are short, small, and very light this time around. Any thoughts or questions you have about these, please comment below. 🙂

I will post more pictures later! Stay tuned!