Wednesday, August 26, 2015

[Tutorial] Basic Bun for Natural Hair | The #WashDayExperience

I had a rude awakening this week: I haven't been sticking to the basics that I've learned actually work for me. I'm not sure if it was my sheer laziness or if it was all of my wash-and-go experimentation but my ends surely suffered from it. I only used two products in today's (not-so) #washdayexperience:

Extreme Deep Condition: Jessicurl Deep Treatment + Almond Oil

I started by trimming my ends. It's weird because I actually have no problem with letting go of my frayed ends anymore. I'm completely and totally committed to having the healthiest ends possible so when they are desperate for a trim---I just whip out the scissors and go for it.You can see pictures of my trim here: My Hair Lately

First, I misted my dry hair with a little water, added a little Jessicurl Deep Treatment and detangled in sections. I stretched out each section and sipped just above where ever my curls felt dry and rough. In some places, like my bangs, I cut about 1/2". In other places, like my nape, I only had to snip 1/8-1/4". This totally reminded me about how delicate the bang/crown area of my hair is. When my hair was texlaxed, one of my goals was to grow my bangs to the same length as my hemline. It took patience, loads of protective styling, and keeping my bang area super hydrated to accomplish that goal

Related: How To Grow Out Your Bangs

Now, I'm probably more scissor happy than most. So, to keep myself in check, I'm recommitting myself to overnight deep conditioning. I love a good co-wash but my thirsty hair needs more. After I trimmed my ends, I sealed the conditioner with a little almond oil, put my hair in jumbo two strand twists, covered with a plastic cap and scarf then sat under my heat cap for about an hour. I stopped using my heating cap for several months because...well...Let me be 100 with y'all---I just didn't feel like it. Ugh...back to basics I go...

Related: Why I Deep Condition Overnight

When I woke up in the morning, believe it or not, but all of the conditioner was gone. It had literally disappeared completely into my hair, leaving my hair feeling uber nourished soft and fluffy. I could run my hands through my hair without getting caught on my frayed ends AND without little bits of broken hairs on the sink.  So, I didn't wash it out. I just pulled all of the twists to the top of my head then pulled my hair into my faithful fluffy top knot. This style is just as easy as wearing a puff but it protects my ends--something that my puff will never be able to do.

Related: My Fluffy Top Knot Hair Tutorial

How was your #washdayexperience? Anyone else suffering from lazy-summer-hair shenanigans? Feel free to share the dets with the rest of our hair obsessed tribe below!

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Tuesday, August 25, 2015

My Hair Lately...

I've been in high puffs, twist outs, and wash-n-gos all summer. And I have hot mess ends to show for it. Last week as I put my hair in twists, I noticed that my ends were fuzzy, feathering, snapping all over the place. I think that I've known for a few months that my sketchy regimen would catch up to me eventually. I guess that today is eventually.
So I gave myself a trim..

And deep conditioned with heat.

And left it in overnight. (Why I Deep Condition Overnight)

And recommitted to protective styling.

AND I'm really serious about trying a *gasp* real long term protective style (or something close to for a couple of months to give my ends a rest. I haven't worn extensions, wigs or weaves in almost 10 years so this is gonna be a huge change. Say a prayer for me y'all. In some ways I feel like I'm stepping back---in other ways I fell like I'm realigning my actions to facilitate match new goal. Not a length goal---because I haven't had a length goal since I achieved my ultimate goal of MBL (with my texlaxed hair) last year---but a new new goal...

My Inspiration (Source)

Your girl is turning the BIG 30 in about 7 months and I really want to ombre my curls. Which means using a lightener, bleach or something ridiculously damaging like that. Needless to say, I want my hair---especially my ends- to be as healthy as they can be.

What has your hair been up to lately?


Wednesday, August 19, 2015

[Hairstyle] Twist Out With Perm Rods | The #WashDayExperience

I would have really enjoyed with my wash-and-go last week, if it wasn't for the yucky gobs of white fuzz that was left on my curls. I scrunched them once it dried completely---a tip that usually gets rid of the cast from gel but that still didn't really get rid of the flakes.

On the bright side, my hair was crazy moisturized and I really like the way that my curls were defined. The style (flakes and all) lasted about 3 days before I co-washed and threw my hair up into a puff. I'm obviously addicted to that puff life. (Hmmm...that sounded less weird in my head...Ha-ha!)

This week, I went for a twist out with a few perm rods on the ends. Here's what I used:

Deep Condition: Jessicurl Deep Treatment
Leave-Ins: Almond Oil + Jessicurl Too Shea Conditioner + DIY Hair Butter
+ My DIY Whipped Butter + Shea Moisture Curl Enchancing Smoothie

And here's how I did it:

I skipped shampooing because my scalp felt pretty clean and went straight into deep conditioning on my dry unwashed hair. I detangled in about 6 sections, applied the conditioner then the oil, and twisted the hair to keep each section separated. Then I covered with a plastic cap + scarf and let it sit (without heat) for about an hour,

As I started to rinse the conditioner + oil mix from my hair in the shower, my curls felt AHHH-MMMAAZZZIIINNNGGGG. Since I chopped, I feel like my hair is much better moisturized than it was when it was relaxed. I'm not sure if my products are working better or if the moisture is a result of me washing more frequently. Either way---I'm loving it!

I let my hair dry wrapped in a t-shirt for about 20 minutes before adding my Almond Oil + Jessicurl Too Shea Conditioner + My DIY Whipped Butter + Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie cocktail and two strand twisting my hair. I wrapped the ends around a pink (5/16") perm rods. I let them dry overnight.

The results:

Oh gosh, I love me some BIG HAIR! I removed the perm rods then unraveled the twists. Next, I took each twist and separated it into two more sections to give my hair more volume. I wanted it to be bigger and a little softer so next time I'll probably stretch my hair first then twist it. I added a couple of hair pins at my roots to give my fro some shape and viola All done!

I wish that I could tell you that I rocked this fro for days. But I didn't---by that afternoon it went up into a puff so that I could go jogging. I gotta save these good hair days for when I really have something important to do. Ha-ha!

How was your #washdayexperience?


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Tuesday, August 18, 2015

[Review] Redken Extreme Builder Plus

My relaxed hair loved protein. My texlaxed hair loved protein. My transitioning hair loved protein. And my natural hair loves protein too. I've been using Redken Extreme Strength Builder Plus for a few months and I'm totally digging it. Here's why:

Breakage is my hair's enemy. Even though my hair isn't relaxed anymore, using a protein heavy conditioner has a pre-shampoo treatment keeps my breakage at a minimum. Just think about it, the ends of your hair are the oldest and weakest part of your hair. So far in my journey I've found that the best way to retain the length that I gain is by I consistently using protein products to protect my ends.

When I consistently use protein in my regimen, I don't have to moisturize and seal as often because my hair retains moisture better. I also noticed that protein conditioners give my curls crazy beautiful definition and banishes frizzy ends.

I little goes a long way with Redken Extreme Strength Builder Plus. I'm usually heavy handed with my conditioners but this one is the exception. When I apply this condition to my dry (and unwashed) hair--my curls absorb it like a sponge. When I say that it gives my curls life---honey I mean it! Sometimes I cover and apply heat---most times I don't---but either way my hair still feels fantastic when I rinse. 

But as usual, my only complaint is the price. I purchased this tub from Ulta for $17.50. I believe that I got 6 uses out of it (which is amazing for this little tub) and puts it at about $2.91 per use if I did the math right---I probably didn't tho... That price per use is lame if you're ballin on a budget like me so if you want to try this conditioner and be easy with your application to make it stretch.

Here are all the specs---just in case you're interested:

Price: $17.50 USD

Purchased at: Ulta and Amazon

Ingredients: Water, Behentrimonium Chloride, Stearyl Alcohol, Cetyl Alcohol, Glycerin, Elaeis Guineensis Oil/Palm Oil, Isopropyl Alcohol, Parfum/Fragrance, Stearamidopropyl Dimethylamine, Octyldodecanol, Methylparaben, Citric Acid, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein Pg-Propyl Silanetriol, Arginine, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, 2-Oleamido-1,3-Octadecanediol, Chlorhexidine Dihydrochloride, Behentrimonium Methosulfate, Quaternium-33, Benzyl Benzoate, Limonene, Phenoxyethanol, Linalool, Ci 42090/Blue 1, Ci 17200/Red 33

Promises: Intense fortifying mask for damaged hair, conditions and strengthens hair to the core. Extreme strengthening hair mask uses Redken's famous Fortifying Complex with 18-MEA to protect shine, Ceramide for structural repair and Interlock Protein Network for internal strength. Discover all the benefits that this fortifying hair mask can do for your hair.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

[Hairstyle] Wash and Go Curly Pinup | The #WashDayExperience

Based on today's #washdayexperience, I can already tell that me + wash and go's aren't really going to mix until....

A. I find a way to style my hair (other than a puff) when I do wash and go
B. I find the right products that don't make my hair look a hot mess in the process. 

Anywhos, here's what I used to wash my hair this week:

Pre-shampoo: Redken Extreme Builder Plus
Shampoo: Jessicurl Cleansing Cream
Clay Mask: Aztec Healing Bentonite Clay (+ Apple Cider Vinegar + Aloe Vera Juice + Glycerin)
Deep Condition: Jessicurl Deep Treatment
Leave-Ins: Almond Oil + Jessicurl Too Shea Conditioner + DIY Hair Butter + Camille Rose Curl Maker

And here's how I did it:

I've been wearing my hair in a huge puff for the last two weeks, so for this #washdayexperience, I wanted to give my hair a little pick me up. I started by detangling and applying Redken Extreme Builder Plus. Even though my hair isn't relaxed anymore, my protein pre-shampoos are more of a preventative measure than anything else. The ends of your hair are the oldest and weakest part of your hair. Plus, I've always seen the greatest length retention when I consistently us protein products to protect my ends.

Related: How I Use Protein To Maximize My Length Retention

My scalp was soooooo gross before I washed today. Like dirty---flaky---filthy gross. After letting my pre-shampoo sit for about 30 minutes, I rinsed in the shower then shampooed my scalp twice with Jessicurl Cleansing Cream. Even with two lathers, my hair didn't feel stripped or get tangled.

I used a cotton t-shirt to absorb the excess water from my hair then I applied my clay mask from root to tip focusing on my ends. Bentonite Clay is amazingness in a jar. It's moisturizing, detoxifying, a shine enhancer, frizz eliminator----just curl defining goodness. Because it was really late, I covered with a plastic cap and scarf then went to bed.

RelatedMy DIY Bentonite Clay Hair Mask Treatment 

The next morning, I rinsed the clay using a little Trader Joe's Tingle Conditioner. Another thing that I'll never get tired of is the way that my curls feel after I do a clay mask. I mean---I really don't think that your hair can ever feel more soft without being overly moisturized, strong without being brittle, or incredibly defined. I really wanted to show you guys what I mean...but I had a terrible time trying to take a picture in the shower! I'm not into curl typing, so all I know is that my curls have got to be the tiniest curls in the world!

To style, I opted for a wash and go. I'm still developing my wash and go regimen, but so far I've stuck to my oil + moisturizer +  butter + holding product curl cocktail. This week I tested out Camille Rose Curl Maker. I've used it before in a twist out---with the same cocktail ingredients and loved it. But this time---it left my wash and go with a white fizz. The only thing that's different from today than my twist out is how wet my hair was before I applied the products. I love how moisturizing Curl Maker is, so I'm not going to give up on it just yet.

After applying my leave ins while I was in the shower, I pulled my hair forward and pinned the back up in a sort of french roll. I let my bangs fall forward then diffused my hair for a few minutes on cold to stop the drippys so that I could get out of the house. My hair takes FOREVER and a day to dry when I wash and go, which is fine in the summer when it's hot outside. Once the seasons start to change, I'll probably abandon the wash and go all together. I can't say that this attempt was successful or that I'm in love with my style but it was presentable!

How was your #washdayexperience?

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

DIY Bentonite Clay Hair Mask Treatment | How To Get Your Curls To Pop!

Since I'm going to be experimenting with wash and gos for the next couple of weeks, I figured that I owed you guys a real post about what I use to define my curls!

When I first chopped my hair, I cut it whilst it was straight---which was a total mistake because I was still left with some bits of straight hair on my bangs. It was nearly impossible to tell the difference between my texlaxed hair and my natural curl so I turned to Bentonite Clay!

Bentonite Clay is amazingness in a jar. It's moisturizing, detoxifying, a shine enhancer, frizz eliminator----just curl defining goodness. I mix it up with a little apple cider vinegar, glycerin, and aloe vera juice to form a conditioning mask, cover with a plastic cap for a little while, then rinse it out. How easy is that?

Here's what you'll need to give it a try:

3 oz Bentonite Clay Aztec Healing Clay
4 oz Aloe Vera Juice
1 oz Apple Cider Vinegar
2 tbsp Glycerin
 And here's how I mix it:
  1. I add the clay to my mixing jar (plastic or glass only. No metal). I like to use a jar with a lid so that I can shake it to mix well
  2. Next stir in the apple cider vinegar with a plastic spoon. It will bubble and foam up like a science fair project. Don't be alarmed!
  3. Add your aloe vera juice and glycerin. Secure the lid of your jar and shake it like crazy! Your mix should be smooth and fluffy. If it's too thick add more liquid and shake again.

How to apply:
After shampooing, I apply the clay to my damp hair from root to tip, separating and detangling my curls as I go. It's a little tedious but I promise it's worth it! Cover with a plastic cap for 20-30 minutes then rinse in the shower. Depending on how my hair feels, I'll either co-wash or deep condition afterwards.

Friday, August 07, 2015

Jessicurl Coupon Code & Giveaway

It's giveaway time!!! Here's your chance to win a set of my all time favorite products from Jessicurl! One lucky chica will win the entire Jessicurl Confident Coils Collection, which includes a full sized bottle each of:

Jessicurl Cleansing Cream
Jessicurl Too Shea Extra Moisturizing Conditioner

Jessicurl Deep Treatment
Jessicurl Confident Coils Styling Solution

Pero, lo siento, this giveaway is only open to my continental US friends. But don't sweat it, get 15% Off Any 8 oz. using coupon: SOSHAIR15. {Expires 2/29/2016. Can not be combined with any other offers. Includes collections}

Enter daily!
Buena Suerte

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Wednesday, August 05, 2015

My Natural Hair Regimen | The #WashDayExperience

I wish that I could say that my regimen has changed drastically since I big chopped, hasn't. I've added in a few new products and simplified the routine a little but the basics are still the same:

To get started, I deep condition or co-wash my hair twice a week. I know that seems excessive for some. And real talk...there are weeks when I just don't have enough energy to deal with my hair. But I know for a fact that my hair thrives when I wash frequently. I have less tangles, my hair doesn't have the opportunity to get dry, and I actually don't have to moisturize or seal daily (which has been something that I've struggled to remember for years!) I rarely use combs---I'm not sure when I stopped but my hair isn't missing it! Finger detangling is the And I always detangle using oil or conditioner before I hop into the shower.


I co-wash when my scalp isn't bothersome but my hair needs moisture. Plus, I exercise 4-5+ days a week and I sweat like a disgusting pig. Need I continue?!? LOL! My co-washing routine goes a little like this:

Detangle put in six sections (2 in the front, 4 in the back)
Apply Conditioner + oil
Finger Detangle in the shower and rinse thoroughly
Leave Ins Apply oil + Leave in + seal with butter

A legit wash day for me includes deep conditioning overnight. I deep condition overnight to save time and because my hair loves, loves, loves moisture. Whenever I talk about how much I love deep conditioning overnight, I have to include a disclaimer: This technique, like everything else in the healthy hair care arena, won't work for everyone. It's your hair and your life, figure out what works the best for you. Just promise me that you'll try it before you knock it?


Here's what a full #washdayexperience looks like for me:

Detangle and put in six sections (2 in the front, 4 in the back)
Pre-shampoo Treatment
Shampoo to prevent product build up as needed
Clay Rinse/Mask to define and rejuvenate my curls as needed
Deep Condition 30 minutes to overnight with or without heat
Finger Detangle in the shower and rinse thoroughly
Leave Ins Apply oil + Creamy Leave in + seal with butter

While, I'm not seeing a ton of breakage, I still like to use a protein conditioner as a pre-shampoo treatment once or twice a month to fortify my ends and prevent damage. I only shampoo when my scalp is gross and I'll use a clay rinse or mask whenever I notice that my curls need a pick me up. Right now, I'm loving stretched hair. So to style, I usually use faux banding to stretch my hair then I set my hair in a twist out, perm rods or bantu knots.

Now, to the fun stuff....


Believe it or not, my favorite product lines haven't changed since I stopped relaxing my hair. I love everything Jessicurl and I can't function without my Matrix Hydrasource. If I had to choose between the two lines, I'd probably go for Jessicurl because they offer a complete package for me, from shampoo to leave ins.

Matrix Biolage Hydrasource Shampoo
Jessicurl Cleansing Cream

Clay Rinse:
Bentonite Clay Aztec Healing Clay 3oz
Aloe Vera Juice 4oz
Apple Cider Vinegar 1oz

Clay Mask:

Same ingredients, more clay

Deep Conditioners:
Jessicurl Deep Treatment
Matrix Biolage Hydrasource

Strengthening Treatments (Protein Conditioners)

Joico K-PAK RevitaLuxe

Co-Washing Conditioners
Aussie 3 Minute Deep
Herbal Essence Hello Hydration
Tresemme Naturals Conditioner
Trader Joe's Tingle Conditioner
OGX Argan Oil Conditioner

Leave Ins
Jessicurl Too Shea Extra Moisturizing Conditioner

DIY Hair Butter
Natural Oils (Almond, Avocado, EVCO, EVOO, Jojoba, Grapeseed)

Whew...That was a mouth-full. But I'm sure that I forgot something! Let me know if you have questions! Happy #WashDayExperience Wednesday chicas!