NEW Product Alert!! Shea Moisture: JBCO Strengthen, Grow & Restore Edge Treatment

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I recently purchased this from my local CVS store. It goes for about $10.99 but I got a slight discount of a dollar or two off, with my handy dandy CVS coupons. 😉 I already have and love some products from the Shea Moisture brand so I did not hesitate to purchase and try this product at all. Also it was the last one on the shelf so…had to get it. I’ve used it a few times now since purchasing it. Although it hasn’t been long enough to see major results, I can still give my first impression which I hope can help you all.

I’ll start with the consistency; it is like a science project gone bad, lol. It took me by surprised when I opened the jar. It is like a semi-solid, transparent jelly that is almost crystal-like and comes out in chunk form when trying to use it. It isn’t easy to scoop up some product for use because it’s in one compact blob so you kinda have to dig at a piece. Idk, maybe I got a bad jar? It was the last jar, as you know. Anyhow, that didn’t kill the experience for me per se. I love the smell. It is a sweet smell and very mild, not overbearing or lasting. It is faint and it fades away. When I apply the product on my edges, it instantly dissolves or melts onto my hair/scalp where applied. It looks a bit greasy like thick castor oil. It is enough to combat the frix of my baby hairs. And I appreciate the concoction of natural and beneficial ingredients. I would prefer to use this over edge control because it doesn’t flake nor cause build-up like a lot of edge controls do. My hairs lay softly and tamed.

The reason I prefer this over edge control is because this is something I would use daily. I cannot use edge control daily to harden my edges and potentially break them, cause, build-up, white cast, or flaking. I hardly use edge controls nowadays. I’ve tried so many and discarded some too. Edge control is something I would use on occasions and on special occasions for hairstyles that I want to be slicked down. My hair and edges are certainly not laid every day. My everyday hair is something I like to keep clean for as long as possible and not have to wash out and reapply daily or multiple times per week. This is just my personal preference. So, that is why my initial impression is to appreciate this product. I will consider it my clean and mild daily edge carer. 🙂 I made that up, but it is fitting to how I utilize this product. I have a lot of essential oils and butters, etc that I can create my own concoction, but I like that this is a small portable jar that I can travel with. And I am not sure that I can make anything close to this that would keep my edges tamed and soft for most of the day without running down my face. So for now I will give this product a 4-star rating since I am still in the initial stages of trying it, and I never give anything 5 stars unless… I would have to be speechless about it to give it 5 stars, lol. So, to have 4 stars is the best it can get with any product right now.

Has anyone else tried this product? Since it is fairly new, I haven’t found ample reviews or extra details about it, so let me know your thoughts!

 

xoxo

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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

Emu Oil!

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I just received my new purchase in the mail today: EMU OIL!!!

The list of essential oils is endless, I swear! For a while, I have been interested in trying Emu oil and I finally got around to getting some. Emus are flightless birds native to Australia. Believe me, I was concerned with buying an oil that originated from an animal’s fat. However, there are many great benefits from Emu oil, especially for hair and skin. Emu oil is non-toxic & natural, non-comedogenic (does not clog pores) and hypo-allergenic (non-irritating). It is gentle and perfect for people with sensitive skin, like myself, and allergies. It can be used topically for various pains, wrinkles, and athlete’s foot to orally for weight loss, cough syrup and reducing cholesterol…the list goes on. As for the hair, I learned that emu oil contains high levels of linolenic acid, which helps to prevent hair loss, stimulates hair growth and hair follicles, thicken hair, and awaken sleeping hair cells.

Disclaimer: Now, don’t take my word for it. It is important that you do your own research if this interests you, as I did. It is important to know both the pros and cons of products that you are interested in before purchasing. And I am by no means promoting or suggesting anything about this product. I am just sharing my new purchase and background information that I’ve accumulated from my research. Once I’ve used the product for a period of time, I will provide an update.

Black Women: Hair and Money Talk!

Source: Pinterest

Image Source: Pinterest

Whether the statement above is true or not, the intended purpose (for this post), is to shock and to awaken one’s subconscious and unconscious mind to utter focal awareness.

The hair business today, is a lucrative and rapidly growing industry. Since the natural hair boom, there has especially been an overabundance of products that share a majority of ingredients, claims and perform the same kind of performance on one’s hair and are sold by many companies. large and small…the same goes for the selling of virgin hair for extensions.

It is overwhelming and it has caused many of us naturals to become “product junkies,” testing out every and anything! Our main excuse which is our downfall is that we must continue to try products until we find what works perfectly for us. Then, we add that product to our “staples,” and continue the hunt to find the rest of products to complete our hair care routine. This justification is only self-enabling, with prospects not so great for our pockets, especially if we took a look back at how much we’ve spent on products that didn’t work for us and have gone to waste. Personally, I know that to date, I’ve spent more than a thousand on hair products and virgin hair.

Companies are profiting majorly from this. There isn’t much they have to do to get us trying an entire line of products or different kinds of virgin hair. Good marketing, attractive packaging, and bold and believable claims are good enough to grasp our attention and interest and lure us in.

I believe that this statistic of our spending on products will soon decline. I say this because, and I will use myself as an example, I was once a product junkie once I returned natural, and since doing research and being conscientious of the ingredients in my products, I can easily weed out the good from the bad. Nowadays, I’ve simplified it even more–I don’t jump for the big company products much anymore–I prefer to get the straight and natural stuff.

For example, before, I would buy a brand name type of essential oil blend. In my intermediate stage, I would check the ingredients for fillers and unnecessary or bad chemicals and opt for an essential oil blend that contained recognizable ingredients (not chemical compounds with big names that don’t seem like English). Now, I just buy the oils that I love and that work for me, such a organic coconut oil, jojoba oil, sweet almond, etc. I can create my own oil blend and I know exactly what is in my blend and it lasts much longer than store brand blends, which essentially makes it the cheapest investment. The same goes for some styling products, moisturizers, deep conditioners, etc. However, I relapse from time to time and end up buying some new product to try, hoping that I would love it, and add it to my staple products and hair care routine.

As for hair weaves, I consider that an investment, and I expect them to last forever and therefore reuse them over and over. I do not plan to purchase new hair for the rest of my life, let alone, after this year. I hope to attain my hair length goal by next year, and be able to have more versatility when rocking my tresses. From time to time, I will switch it up with wigs I create from the hair weaves I have, and also utilize protective styling with synthetic twists and braids.

Overall, my excessive product bingeing days are over. I have better control over my spending and am conscientious of what I look to buy. As I continue to narrow down by using up most of the products I already have, I try keep my hair regimen as simple as possible. It also helps that I can do my own hair, so I don’t have to go to a salon and get it washed, treated and styled, or have braids and twists done. That process in itself saves a ton of money. I also do some small money-saving things such as reusing synthetic hair (marley hair) from Havana twists. Anyhow, to conclude, I am heading towards the clear from this statistic. My goals are to simplify my hair care routine/regimen to look like this example I’ve created below:

1 sulfate poo
1 sulfate-free poo
1 conditioner/cowash
2 or 3 hair mask combos/DC treatments e.g.: a protein, a moisture/hydration, etc.
homemade essential oil combo
1 cream/butter (pure shea butter)
1 gel (friendly ingredients)
1 edge control (optional)

Ultimately, I do not want to have more than one product that does the same job in my hair closet.

I hope that this post can help other naturals or relaxed women become aware of their spending on hair products and conduct an assessment to determine whether they are spending excessively on products. Collectively, we DO spend more than we should on our hair, not that is is our own fault entirely. We need to cut down in this area of our lives and be more conscientious of our spending. Other aspects of our life will appreciate it!

We put so much into our appearances that sometimes we don’t realize the value of that dollar we spend.

Below are links to a couple topics off on a tangent which I found to be interesting reads. Thought I would share with you all:

Why do Korean beauty supply stores succeed while Black Ones Struggle (blackinfrastructure.wordpress.com)

Why Do Korean Beauty Supply Stores Outnumber Black Owned Ones? (Blackhairinformation.com)

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!

A Product Junkie’s Closet

A picture worth a thousand words, or more fitting--A THOUSAND BUCKS!

A picture worth a thousand words, or more fitting–A THOUSAND BUCKS!

 

I am a product junkie; I cannot deny it. I’ve tried so many different products since I’ve been natural–way more than in this image here. Keep in mind that poo’s and conditioners are not included in this image. This is my current stash of hair products.
In the past, I’ve done a closet clean out by discarding products I no longer use and products that I felt were unhealthy for my hair. These were products that contained petrolatum/petroleum/petroleum oil, mineral oil, dimethicones and other silicones, parabens, sulfates, and whole bunch of chemical stuff I couldn’t pronounce.
When I returned to being natural, I wanted to care for and grow my hair the healthiest way possible. I took it to the extreme, researching and familiarized myself with products, ingredients, tips, etc. and used natural and organic products only. I even tried making my own natural products. Then I decided that that took up way too much time and was too much work. So then, I decided to stick to buying products that contained natural and important ingredients to aid in my natural hair growth.
Nowadays, there are a number of new and growing companies, both big and small that are creating natural and organic products.  Other big companies that have been around for some time are also picking up on the natural trend and revamping their hair care lines by taking out unnecessary chemicals, synthetics, dyes, fragrances, fillers, and more. For this reason, I have stopped trying to create my own homemade products. However, I have turned into a product junkie monster due to the colossal  amount of products companies are putting out!
At the same time, I appreciate the different products because I love trying new things to see what works well with my hair when I try different styles. If there are any products in the picture above that you’re considering to try but aren’t too sure about, just inquire below. I’ll gladly tell you my experience with it. And if there are any products that you’d like to suggest I try, feel free to comment and let me know! 🙂