Friday, October 25, 2013

How to Stretch Natural, Transitioning and TexlaxedHair Without Heat

Faux Banding

I'm 4 months (eek!) into this stretch and I don't see it ending before the ball drops on 2014. I've been using banding for about a month to stretch my stretch. (Say that 10 times fast. Ha-ha!) Here's a breakdown on how I get my big fluffy "straightened" air dried hair.

1. Start with damp hair: If I've just finished washing, I wait until it's anywhere from 75-90% dry before trying to do anything to it. Why? Wet dangling is the devil--to me. If you prefer to detangle while soaking wet--use caution. Wet chemically treated hair is weaker when wet and can break even with lower force.

2. Everything in sections: My hair laughs at me when I try to comb through it all at once. The smaller the sections, the more "straightened" your hair will be. I usually end up with 12 sections. 

3. Cocktail: Detangler + Creamy Moisturizer + Oil/Butter. Use whatever your hair likes. Today, I'm crushing on this combo: Aloe Tea Spray + Jessicurl Too Shea Extra Moisturizing Conditioner + my kitchenista Tangerine Vanilla Whipped Hair Butter. Whether you LOC or LCO or ABCD---it really doesn't matter. As long as you've equipped yourself with products that will detangle your super curly roots, that don't leave an icky residue, and that play well together you'll be fine. Gently finger detangle removing your shed hairs working from the ends up then comb through. If you need a good wide tooth comb try my fave-- Magic Star Jumbo Rake

4. How to: Everyone and their mama has a different---yet totally the same---hair banding technique. Whoissugar is my all time fave YouTube "personality" and her technique is on point. If you need a few laughs--just listen to her video without watching it. *Hilarious honey*

Real Banding- Take your detangled, moisturized, and sealed section then secure a hair band at the base of your hair. Grab another hair band and secure it about an inch or so below the first continue adding bands until you reach the end of your hair. Repeat on each section until complete. Let dry for a few hours to overnight.

"Faux" Banding on Texlaxed Hair
My "Faux" Banding- Instead of using a hair tie (who can find that many hair ties anyway?!?), I secure the detangled section with two Colortrak Safari Croc Clips on each side at the base of my hair. I usually add another set on each side about 2 inches down and then just one clip to tuck my ends under. Once I finish detangling the next section, I gently add it to the previous banded section and repeat until complete. Total amount of clips: 5. My hair dries in about an hour or two.  

5. Troubleshooting: I started "Faux Banding" before I even knew what real banding was as a way to stretch my roots because shrinkage ain't no joke! I'm BSL in the shower then neck length within an hour if I let my hair dry without assistance. I noticed that if I secured the clips with a little tension at the base of my hair I could get voluminous fluffy air dried hair, keep tangles at bay, and stretch my hair. But I had a few epic fails in the process:
  • Poor product selection- I can not stress this point enough. Use what works for your hair. While choosing your products think about your desired results and what you hair needs at the moment. Notice some breakage? Spritz a little Chi Keratin Mist in with your detangler. Did your hair feel too heavy or coated in the end? Ease up on the amount of product that you use in each section. Were your ends not smooth enough? Roll them like you would do a pin curl next time.
  • Fuzzy Roots- When you're done, slap some Aloe vera gel on those edges and get your silk scarf to lay it all down. This should smooth down your edges and take a little volume out of the crown of your head.
  • Used sucky clips- So you tried to use those metal prong clips and poked yourself. Or better yet they were sliding all over the place and didn't provide enough tension. Yep. That's why I use croc clips. No slip. No tangles. And super cute. Be careful. Friends, cousins, and children will try to steal them. Ha-ha.
If banding doesn't work the first time, know that you're totally not alone. One of those metal clips got lost in my roots once. I found it--2 days later. Smh. But when you're rocking that giant doughy bun or using your stretched hair as a base for bantu knots---You'll be happy that you gave it another try. 


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  1. Replies
    1. Thanks Tomi! This technique would probably create the bestest flexi-rod (blendy rod) curls on you.

  2. From BSL to neck length?! Now Sug, do you really have that much shrinkage? LOL.

    I've never banded my hair; I plait to stretch my roots. I don't use any products with hold so it combs out easily without leaving a crinkle pattern. This looks a lot faster thought, but I don't know if these 11 months post roots can handle it! *off to research Croc clips*

    1. Haha! Shrinkage is real. My kid has waist length when wet (she's only 4 mind you) curls that shrink to shoulder length or less when dry.

      If there is an indentation left on my hair---it blends in with my texture so I've never noticed it.

      Thanks for stopping by Neisha!

  3. I need to try banding! The top part of my hair shrinks up so much. Great tips! x

    1. I hope that it works for you Lesley! It took me a while to find a way to smooth out my air dried hair.

  4. Replies
    1. Thanks Nerline! I've always had either average or slight above average growth. Shedding always gets me in the end. Smh.

  5. I so need to try this, cause these roots aren't playing!

  6. I love this post (and the way it was written) and I must say that we have similar hair. My hair shrinks so much myself that I have to stretch it. I usually do this with plaits however I sometimes have to manipulate wet hair especially when I am in a rush. Love your curly topknot.

    1. Hey Tonkabelle! I braid my little one's hair every night before bed---for the life of me I can't convince myself to do the same on my own head. Ha-ha! Occasionally, I'll divide my hair into pigtails then braid the ends on my co-wash days. I have good results---just not as good as when I band.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  7. great tips, will definitely try them.

  8. Great tips hun, i also prefer stretching my hair wiht any method once hair is not completely wet... but mainly because otherwise it takes aaages to dry. and thanks for ur comment on my latest post.. yes the style is also suitable to use when ur nt using heat :) x


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