Wednesday, December 28, 2011

HHB New Year Resolutions!

What are your healthy hair and body resolutions for the New Year?  Mine are:

- get back to prepooing with coconut oil (I've been slacking)
- exercise more frequently
- grow my hair to waistlength
- stick to my hair care regimen
- be more diligent about taking my multivitamins

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Monday, December 19, 2011

3in6: Prep Week #3

PREP WEEK #3: December 19-25.  To join the challenge, see this post.

Use this week to draft your healthy meal plan for 3in6:

For the challenge, we are to eat fruits/vegetables with each meal.

  1. Find or come up with recipes that incorporate fruits/vegetables
  2. Write your grocery list
  3. Set up a drinking plan for your water intake

REVIEW #12: Pura Naturals Cupuacu Hair Butter (Lemongrass)

NOTE:  I am not paid to review this product.

Purpose: Moisturizer

Ingredients: Theobroma grandiflorum (Cupuacu) Butter, Astrocaryum Murumuru Butter, Mangifera indica (Mango) Seed Butter, Shorea stenoptera (Illipe) Seed Butter, Organic Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter) Fruit , Organic Olea Europaea (Olive) Oil, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Organic Pouteria (sapote oil) Sapota, and Herbal extract blend (horsetail, nettles, and burdock root).  

Number of trials: Numerous (until I finished the product)

How I used it:
Applied on freshly washed and conditioned hair.


The cupuacu butter is divine.  It is really rich, thick, and moisturizing.  A little bit of the product certainly goes a long way; the sample lasted me much longer than I thought it would.  The lemongrass blend smell (while I like it) may be a bit strong for some, so I suggest trying the unscented version of this butter.

PROS: moisturizing, natural, a little goes a long way
CONS: a little expensive

RATING: Overall, I give the Pura Naturals Cupuacu Hair Butter 4.5 out of 5 stars.  

Monday, December 12, 2011

3in6: Prep Week #2

PREP WEEK #2: December 11-18.  To join the challenge, see this post.

Use this week to adjust your regimen for 3in6:

  1. Determine what protective style you'll wear for 3in6
  2. Choose whether you'll style for 2, 3, or 4 weeks at a time
  3. Purchase products you will need to maintain your hair
  4. "Practice" your new regimen
  5. Up your water intake gradually

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Thursday Tips!

*Check your hair scissors periodically.  Dull scissors can contribute to split ends.

*Mix one part of pure honey with two parts conditioner for an extra punch of moisture.  Use the concoction after a fresh wash, leave it on for 20 minutes, and then rinse.

*Donate unused hair products that you have in overstock, or give them away as gifts this holiday season.  Swap used hair products with friends or family.

Monday, December 5, 2011

The Truth about Probiotics

With the increasing interest in probiotics (bacteria that help maintain the natural balance of organisms in the intestines), it is important to know the facts.  Check out the following overview on WebMD.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

3in6: Prep Week #1

PREP WEEK #1: December 4-10.  To join the challenge, see this post.

Use this week to get a fresh trim or cut.  The following reasons are why:

  1. The goal of the challenge is to retain length, and there is no better way to do it than with healthy ends from the start.
  2. Trimming or cutting throughout the challenge is a no-no.  It will defeat the purpose of retaining length.

How should one trim/cut her hair?  It depends on your preference.  A trim can be done on dry or wet hair, and straight or coily hair.  I prefer to trim in twists.

Read this post about trimming.

Friday, December 2, 2011

3in6 is Back!

Just in time for the New Year!  This challenge will run from January 1 - July 1 2012.  Below are the details.  Are you in?  Mark your spot in the comment section.

Purpose of this challenge: To retain 2-3 inches of growth in 6 months.

Challenge period: January 1 - July 1 2012

1. Eat fresh vegetables or fruits with each meal.
2. Take a daily multivitamin.
3. Drink sufficient water.
(Amt of water in oz. = Your weight in lbs * 0.5)
4. Wear twists or braids 2-4 weeks at a time.
5. No direct heat.
6. Absolutely no trimming.  (Start with a fresh cut now if need be.)

Each challenger is allowed two 1-week periods of styling her hair as she pleases (e.g., puff, rollerset, etc.).

Tips on wearing twists/braids long term:
- Do not twist/braid too tightly
- Redo the perimeter weekly or biweekly.
- Deep condition & detangle thoroughly prior to twisting or braiding.
- For more tips, check out posts in the twist series

Monday, November 28, 2011

Trim & Regimen Experiment

I'm trimming 3/4" of an inch.  My method is to put my hair in jumbo twists and trim the ends of the twists.  (I recommend doing smaller twists for a more accurate trim.)  This is my first trim in months.

Normally, I twist my hair for 3-4 weeks at a time during the cooler months.  This time, I'll maintain my summer regimen and twist biweekly.  My hair is getting harder to detangle (as it grows), so doing so 1x every 2 weeks instead of 4 weeks will make life easier.  It'll also be easier on my hair.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Black Friday Natural Hair Sales!

11/25 thru 11/26
30% off w/ coupon code BLKFRI30

Anita Grant
11/24 7pm to 11/30 7pm
20% off entire store with free global shipping.

Bee Mine
11/25 midnight to 1:00am
30% off w/ coupon code 1HR30

For more sales (Carol's Daughter, Darcy's Botanicals, Butters-n-Bars, etc.), check out this blog.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

HHB Does Not Promote Misinformation

A comment was left by one of my readers stating that Afro-textured hair is drier because the scalp produces less sebum than those with naturally straighter hair.  This is not true.  In actuality, African Americans produce more sebum in the scalp than Caucasians and Asians.  HHB does not promote misinformation.  I do my best to blog the facts when blogging facts.  The myth that the scalp of African Americans is naturally dry has been busted by scientific research.



Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Moisture: An Oldie But Goodie

Here is a repost from July 26, 2009!!  Just in time for the Fall.

What causes these dry ends?

Sebum is the hair and scalp's natural conditioner. In straight hair, this oily substance can generally move down the shaft to the ends fairly easily because of the direct path. The hair's close proximity to the scalp as well as continual brushing and combing also aid in the transport process. As for textured hair? That is another story.

The coilier your hair, the harder it is for sebum to travel down to the ends. Here's my analogy: Imagine oil running along a straight road versus a path full of turns and twists. In the latter case, the oil may slow down or even get caught at each curve. By the time it reaches its destination, only a fraction of the oil will remain. There is also the possibility that it may never reach its destination. This process is basically what curly, coily, and kinky hairs experience. Additionally, factor in a minimal brushing/combing routine and the reality that some natural hair works against gravity (i.e., stands up and out away from the scalp). We ultimately have a case in which sebum just barely reaches the ends of our hair, if at all.

Now the explanation above is just one of many causes of dry ends. Other reasons are listed in this post on moisture and length retention.

How do you stop dry ends (due to inadequate sebum)?
Since sebum may barely, if at all, reach the ends of textured hair, it is necessary to quench and condition those ends. Here are some methods that work for me and may hopefully work for others:

*Discard harsh regular shampoos
Shampoos with SLS and other strong ingredients strip my hair (including my ends) of their natural oils. The shampoo I use on a regular basis contains more gentle substances. Other options to explore are conditioner washing or using homemade natural cleansers instead of a shampoo. Some people also do a treatment with oil at a warm or room temperature prior to washing to minimize sebum loss from their strands. (Click here for hot oil treatments.)

*Lather once when you shampoo
Minimal lathering equals minimal loss of whatever sebum is on my ends.

*No direct shampoo on the ends
I rarely expose my ends to direct shampoo. I just focus on the scalp and let the water and lather run down the rest of my hair.

*Saturate the ends with moisture and conditioner
Pay the most attention to your ends while conditioning and moisturizing.

*Invest in good products
Each individual head of hair is different, but this post may be a place to start in terms of what sealants, moisturizers, and conditioners to try.

*Eat foods containing omega-3 and vitamin A
Few people realize that foods, such as salmon, cantaloupe, and flaxseeds contribute to sebum production. For the omega-3 post, click here. For the vitamin A post, click here.

*Airdry the hair in a protective style
Protective styling isn't reserved for the protection of the ends. It has the added benefit, in my case, of helping my ends absorb and retain moisture post a washing session.

*Sleep with a silk scarf/pillowcase
The same added benefit applies here too.

How do you stop dry ends (due to porosity)?

I believe that another major contributor to dry ends in black hair is high porosity. What causes high porosity? Well, a number of things including gradual wear and tear of the hair. I really encourage anyone who believes they might have this issue to read this extremely informative article: Part 1 . For solutions to the porosity issues, do check out Part 2 as well: Part 2 .


SEBUM & TEXTURED HAIR 2: Randy Schueller, Perry Romanowski. "Conditioning agents for hair and skin".

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Playlist for November

On repeat: Braided bun

Sounds like: Sade

Interlude: bi-weekly washes & detangling; weekly moisturizing

Monday, October 24, 2011

Tension Method: Blow Drying Relaxed or Natural Hair

The "tension method" is a gentler way to blow dry your tresses.  Below are two video tutorials depending on your hair's state:

Tension method on relaxed/texlaxed hair:

Tension method on natural hair:

Friday, October 21, 2011

Loo, Where Have You Been? Part I

For one, combatting the urge to perm my hair:
I think it's inevitable for most naturals to get that urge to perm their hair.  A horrid detangling session may trigger that urge.  Or boredom with natural hair styles.  For me, it's been a combination of the two in addition to wanting to eliminate shrinkage and see my real length.  On two separate occasions, I've considered going to the store to buy relaxer.  However, I know this urge is temporary and that I would regret the decision to permanently alter my hair.  For the time being, I will tame this urge by wearing straight/stretched styles during the Fall and Winter.  Now that the weather is cooler, I can wear such styles for weeks at a time.  This brings me to my ...

new Autumn/Winter Hair Care routine:
Prepoo, Wash, DC, and detangle
•Moisturize and Airdry in 8 braids
•Remove braids, apply heat protectant, and flat iron
•Wear bun or jumbo twists for 2-3 weeks

Products used: Coconut oil, Suave Conditioner, Desert Essence Lemon Tea Tree Shampoo, Shea Butter Mixture, Pantene Smooth Serum

Next time: Repairing damaged nails

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Cooking Oils - Good or Bad

For information on whether cooking oils are good or bad and which ones to use or avoid, check out this read.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Heat Training: The "Benefits"

{Stretched texture shot}
heat training /hēt ˈtrāniNG/  Noun
the loosening of one's natural curl pattern through the regular application of high heat.  This process is usually gradual and subtle. (Loo's definition.)

Heat training is essentially a form of heat damage, which is why I have been so against the technique for some years.  However, my thoughts have changed recently since seeing a class of "healthy" heat-trained naturals arise.  Here is one of these naturals sharing her views: Longhairdontcare2011.

"Healthy heat-trained hair" may seem like an oxymoron but I can argue the same with "healthy hair".  Our strands face damage on a regular basis through sun exposure, styling, washing, detangling, and other forms of wear and tear.  So where do we drawn the line between what is healthy hair and what is not?  I think it reasonable to draw it between hair that is strong and supple (healthy) and that which is breaking and brittle (unhealthy). To me, hair that retains a reasonable level of strength and suppleness is hair that is healthy.  That being said, there is such a thing as heat-trained hair that is strong, supple, ... and thus healthy.  However, this is only true for some ladies.  Keep in mind that heat training can work well for some naturals and not so well for others.  For the former group I answer the following question ...


1. Easier Detangling ...
comes with a loosening of the curl pattern. For some naturals, the mass of curls/coils/kinks makes detangling a very tedious task. Generally, I’d say, “suck it up”, but as my hair has gotten longer, I can truly understand how brutal such a task can be for some naturals.  It can be brutal to the point of mechanical damage (e.g., breakage from impatient combing sessions).

2. Fewer SSKs ...
will form if the hair is heat trained.  What is a single-strand knot (SSK)?  It is essentially a knot formed from a strand of hair that has wrapped around itself.  What is a conducive environment for SSKs?  A mass of coils and kinks.  SSKs translate into more trims and sometimes breakage.  Heat training or other hair care steps (read here) can mitigate this issue.

3. Length Retention ...
comes with easier detangling and fewer SSKs.  "Proper" heat training can theoretically help some naturals achieve longer lengths.  Will I ever heat train for length retention?  In all honesty, I do not know yet.

4. Increased Versatility ...
is another benefit of heat training.  It becomes easier to achieve stretched or straight styles when desired.  Additionally, these styles will last longer.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Gain and Retain Length on Afro-Textured Hair

Chicoro is someone I would describe as an afro-textured hair growth guru.  She shares a wealth of FREE information to subscribers of her website:  Check out the site, enter your email address, and get information sent to your inbox weekly.  I did! Enjoy!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Thursday, August 18, 2011

A Forum to Discuss ...

Hi Readers,

Feel free to join the new Healthy Hair and Body forum here.  (Or click the "Forum" link above.)  It is your place to discuss healthy hair, body, and soul.  Ask questions.  Share knowledge.  Support one another's journeys.  And more.


3in6: Encore in January!

By popular demand, the 3in6 challenge will be back ... but in January 2012!  It'll be a great way to begin the new year.  For the time being, I wish you all the best in continuing on your own for the rest of the year!

Migraines and Drinking Water?

"Dehydration ... results in less blood and oxygen flow to the brain and dilated blood vessels."  Hence, the migraine.  For the complete article, read here.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Youtube: Genetically Modified Food ...

In this videoDearNaptural85 discusses "eating well and organic living".  As part of her discussion, she shares her thoughts on a book entitled "The Unhealthy Truth".  Here's a short description of the author's journey:

"O'Brien turns to accredited research conducted in Europe that confirms the toxicity of America’s food supply, and traces the relationship between Big Food and Big Money that has ensured that the United States is one of the only developed countries in the world to allow hidden toxins in our food--toxins that can be blamed for the alarming recent increases in allergies, ADHD, cancer, and asthma among our children. Featuring recipes and an action plan for weaning your family off dangerous chemicals one step at a time, The Unhealthy Truth is a must-read for every parent--and for every concerned citizen--in America today."

To purchase the book:
The Unhealthy Truth: One Mother's Shocking Investigation into the Dangers of America's Food Supply-- and What Every Family Can Do to Protect Itself

Healthy Hair Features: RECAP

In case you've missed them, here are healthy-haired women who have been featured on the blog:

Natural: NowIamnappy
Natural: MissAlinaRose
Natural: Chime
Texlaxed: MsKibibi
Natural: Janet
Youtube Natural: Afrostory
Youtube Natural: Rusticbeauty
Natural: Redecouverte
Natural: Lina
Natural: Copa
Relaxed: Caroline
Natural: Gisele

*If you're interested in being featured, use the "Contact Me" button above.

Monday, August 8, 2011

3in6: Wrap Up!

{February photo}
See "3in6 Challenge" details here.

Hey, ladies!  The challenge has come to an end.  Six months of healthy hair care and eating to retain 2-3 inches of new growth.  I did alright.  I haven't reached waistlength (yet), but I retained 2-2.5 inches of growth.  (Photos will come when I get my friend to help me.  :Smiles:)  I plan to continue doing this challenge (offline) for the rest of 2011.  I hope you all gained something from this group support.

How did my challengers wrap up the 3in6?

REVIEW #11: Karma Organic Nail Polish

NOTE:  I am not paid to review this product.  This product was purchased via my own pocket and curiosity.

Ingredients: unknown. 

Number of trials: 3 to 4


The nail polish was true to the colors presented online and coated well with just 1-2 applications.  I was fairly impressed.  With the help of the 2-in-1 base coat, it lasted up to week, which is good in my book.  The only negative I really have is that the polish is expensive.

PROS: many color choices, true to colors, coats well, no toluene, no formaldehyde, no DBP 
CONS: expensive for a little bottle

RATING: Overall, I give the Karma Organic Nail Polish 3 out of 5 stars.  I'll explore other "natural" polishes, like Zora, before committing to Karma.

May be purchased at Karma Organic.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

3in6: Back to Twists

See "3in6 Challenge" details here.

The box braids were a success!! I wore them for 5 weeks and spent a few hours taking them down. The removal process was not bad at all; I think it helped that I made the braids big. As I anticipated, the braids did not age or shrink as much as twists.  So, I am a new convert to box braids? Somewhat. I'm still in love with twists but will incorporate box braids from time to time.

How are you all doing this month?

Reader's Question: My Hair Routine

Reader's Question:
"Hey! I just had to say that I love your blog .... I cut off the rest of my relaxed ends after a 23 month transition! My hair is type 4. I recently tried twisting my hair with a shea butter mix and it was awesome! My hair dried so soft! Thnks for such an informative blog! What is your hair routine for washing, styling, and heat usage?"

My Answer:
Thank you for your message! A few pieces of my regimen have remained constant over the years.  These pieces include: wear twists as protective style, redo twists every 2-4 weeks, condition after each wash, and detangle monthly.  Other parts of my regimen have varied every several months or so.  Here's what I currently do:

Wash weekly/biweekly (Desert Essence Lemon Tea Tree)
Condition after each wash (V05 or homemade avocado DC)
Prepoo with coconut oil for 20 min
Detangle monthly (fall/winter/spring) or biweekly (summer)
Moisturize weekly (water then shea butter mix or Pura Naturals)

Wear twists/box braids ~3-4 weeks (fall/winter/spring) or ~1-2 weeks (summer)
Pin up twists/braids for updo 99% of the time
Wear twistouts or flat-ironed buns on rare occasions
*For more on my twisting routine, check this series

In 2010: Flat iron ~3x (during the fall/winter)
In 2011: May or may not keep the same usage (more on that later)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Post on Heat Training?

UPDATE: Post coming in mid August!
The topic of "heat training" natural hair is a very controversial one.  I've debated whether to do a post on the possible benefits (yes, I said it ... lol) of heat training natural hair for length retention.  Let me know your thoughts in the "Comments" or "Reactions" section below. :o)

REVIEW #10: Karma Organic Nail Polish Remover - Unscented

NOTE:  I am not paid to review this product.  This product was purchased via my own pocket and curiosity.

Purpose: To remove nail polish from nails.

Ingredients: propylene carbonate, soybean oil methyl ester, tocopheryl acetate (i.e, vitamin E oil). 

Number of trials: 3 to 4

How I used it:
• Apply to cotton ball
• Then wipe polish off nails


It's official!  I really like this nail polish remover.  There is no strong, chemical smell like most nail polish removers you find on the store shelves.  In all honesty, I do not recall smelling much of anything while using this remover.

This nail polish remover is also very moisturizing.  Most commercial removers that I've used leave my nails feeling extremely dry.  In contrast, this remover leaves behind a light oily film which hydrates the nails.

Lastly, I like that this remover works on both organic and non-organic (e.g., Revlon) nail polishes.   It wiped away both sets of polishes more so effectively than commercial removers do.  A little remover goes a long way.

PROS: moisturizing, no strong smell, may be used to remove non-organic polishes as well, a little goes a long way, more effective than commercial nail polish removers I've tried, the quality fits the price

CONS: none

RATING: Overall, I give the Karma Unscented Organic Nail Polish Remover 5 out of 5 stars.  

May be purchased at Karma Organic.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Youtube: Ask the Hair Doctor

Trichologist Lisa Akbari has a youtube series on "Ask the Hair Doctor".  Here is one of her video responses.  For more, check out her channel.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Twist Series: The Kitchen Area (Reader's Request)

These are some ways I prevent my nape area from locking while in twists.  Hopefully, they are helpful to you as well:

Rule #1: Re-twist the nape area (and the hairline) weekly.
I rarely go past a week without re-twisting that section.  If I do, I'm headed into loc-ville.

Rule #2: Make big twists in the nape area.
My twists in the back are usually bigger than my twists on the rest of my head.  I make about 3-4 big twists in the nape area.  Any smaller, and ... yes, you've guessed it ... I'm headed into loc-ville.

Rule #3: (Alternative to #2) Make one big horizontal flat twist in the nape area.
This method was developed by a natural haircare buddy named Mooks (some of you may have heard of her).  She and other women use this method to grow and protect the fragile kitchen area.

Rule #4: Patience while untwisting and detangling.
Since the kitchen area is prone to breakage and tangling, exhibit extreme patience while untwisting and detangling this section.  Be sure to lubricate the twists with an oil and/or butter during this process.

Monday, May 23, 2011

SHORT REVIEW #9: Egg Blackhead Remover

Purpose: To remove blackheads (and whiteheads).

Ingredients: egg white

Number of trials: 2

How I used it:
• Wash face as usual
• Apply egg white to face liberally
• Place toilet paper pieces on face to make a mask (avoid eyebrows)
• When dry, remove toilet paper, and wash face as usual


This at-home facial did not remove my blackheads instantly; I saw a few skin particles but did not see any blackheads in the tissue as described in the tutorial below.  The day following the facial, however, I did experience slight blackhead reduction in a few areas.  On a scale of 1 to 5, I give this facial a 2.  It's a bit messy and uncomfortable, but it's worth a try.


3in6: Box Braids Trial

{Box braids (with twisted ends)}
See "3in6 Challenge" details here.

Last weekend, I did box braids for the first time since going natural.  My primary reason for doing so was to simply switch things up from my usual twists.  Another reason for doing box braids was to see if I could wear it for 4-5 weeks with considerably less aging and shrinkage than twists.  This natural lady (pookinapp) was my main inspiration for experimenting with box braids.  What has held me off for so long were 1) the fear of my braids locking and 2) the tedious takedown process.  Given that I did my set larger than most people, hopefully the takedown and detangling won't be so bad?  We shall see weeks from now.

How are my challengers doing as we soon stride into Month #4?

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

MORE on Natural Nail Polishes + Future Review

I ordered nail polish, nail polish remover, and a 2-in-1 base coat from Karma Organics.  The package is on the way, and a review will be posted in June.

Why I chose Karma Organics?
A good combination of price and color choice.  They had more colors from which to choose than the other places I checked.  Next on the list would be Zoya.

Meanwhile, ...
The top three supposedly unhealthy chemicals contained in certain nail polishes are toluene, formaldehyde, and dibutyl pthalate (DBP).  (For more details on these ingredients, check the links below.)  Some companies, however, appear to making efforts to eliminate one or more of these chemicals.  After looking at the back of a few polishes I own, I learned the following:
  • Revlon is Toluene, DBP and Formaldehyde free - that's good news
  • OPI is Toluene, DBP, and now Formaldehyde free
  • NYX is DBP free, but contains Formaldehyde and Toluene - argh


Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Remnants of PJ-ism: Glycerin

This will be a short series on my attempt to finish a few remaining products from my 'product junkie' (PJ) days.

product junkie /ˈprädəkt ˈjəNGkē/ Noun
A person with an obsessive habit of purchasing and collecting products, particularly hair products.  

Today's remaining products: Vegetable Glycerin.

I prefer to use honey over glycerin as a humectant.  This bottle from Whole Foods has been in my cabinet for 2 years, more or less, with little usage.  

Finishing strategy: For the past few weeks, in an effort to use it up, I've been mixing it with oils and conditioners for a detangling mix.  I think I'll also use it to mix a new body butter (which I finished weeks ago).

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Natural Nail Polishes ... ?

I've never been a big nail polish wearer, but things have changed.  Recently, I've begun painting my nails on the weekends as part of my "pamper myself" time. Despite an investment in a base coat, top coat, and acetone-free nail polish remover, my nails have suffered from the self-manicures. While I don't want to give up my new weekend beauty regimen, I also want my healthy nails back. With that I've decided to look into natural nail polishes. They lack the harmful chemicals that most regular nail polishes contain which damage our nails. Sounds to good to be true?  Well I'll find out soon.  Let me know if you all would like a product review in the near future ...

Here are some polishes I'm currently researching:


3in6: Using My "Out" Pass

See "3in6 Challenge" details here.

So after almost 3 months in twists, I (and my edges) needed a break.  Last weekend I wore a chunky twistout!  

Prior to the style, I washed and hennaed (with a cassia melt for strengthening, not color) for the first time in months.  Then I followed up with a light wash, deep conditioner, and detangling.  After that, it was time to do chunky twists.

As for the healthy intake, it's been going okay.  I've been using a lot of onions and tomatoes in my meals in addition to spinach and the usual.  Daily multivitamin - check.  Water - check.

We're officially halfway there, ladies!!

How do you plan to finish these next 3 months?  Are there any lessons you have learned up to this point?

Friday, April 29, 2011

Hydrogen Peroxide and Pimple Experiment

From previous experiences, I knew that applying coconut oil to my face would cause acne, but I just had to ignore that lesson, didn't I?  Well, the result was worse than expected; by Monday I had a humongous pimple on my nose.  Ahhh!!  It's probably one of the largest (if not the largest) pimples I've ever had.  Anyway, I immediately went to the toothpaste trick and then the baking soda scrub (more of a preventative aid than a treatment).  Though both methods were helping, the shrinking was an extremely gradual process.  I needed the monstrosity gone by Friday for an event I was to attend.  There had to be a faster method, right? ....

Well, after perusing the Web I came across one interesting reality.  Reducing the bacteria involved in acne can speed up the shrinking process.  Benzoyl peroxide was recommended (which I've tried in the past but had little success with from what I can recall).  Rather than go purchase another product with this compound, I decided to use what was already in my cabinet - hydrogen peroxide.  Well, what'd you know.  The pimple shrunk so fast overnight. I'm impressed!


Short Series: Remnants of PJ-ism

This will be a short series on my attempt to finish a few remaining products from my 'product junkie' (PJ) days.

product junkie /ˈprädəkt ˈjəNGkē/ Noun
A person with an obsessive habit of purchasing and collecting products, particularly hair products.  

Today's remaining product: Kinky Curl Custard (KCC).

I actually like this product but do not really have a need for it in my regimen ... hence why it's got to go.  It's been sitting in my cabinet for over a year (maybe a year and a half?) and is on the verge of going bad.  That being said, it's the first on my "to finish" list.

Finishing strategy: Mix KCC with my homemade shea butter mix to create a super DUPER moisturizer and twisting/twistout custard in one!  I'm so loving the end result.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Protective Styling with Short Wigs

Summer is months away, but we can still plan for it, yes?  Short, cropped hairstyles are creeping in this season and will still be in during the hot months.  Check out the video below showing a super cute and sleek short wig.  Hmm, a possible summer protective style? :o)

Monday, April 18, 2011

3in6: Almost Halfway

See "3in6 Challenge" details here.

Alright, ladies!  We are almost halfway through the challenge.  This coming weekend, I'll take out these twists and put in another set.  You know the routine.  :o)  As the summer approaches, I'll switch from wearing twists every 4-ish weeks to wearing them every 2-ish weeks ... maybe 3.  My washes will be upped from biweekly to weekly.

In other news, my hair broke my 1-year-old trusty black jaw clip today.  :o(  Fortunately, my new Ficcare accessories arrived just in time for the rescue.  :o)  (I'll give a review of the Ficcare clips - purchased by me as a belated birthday gift - in the weeks to come.)

How are you ladies gearing up for the final half of the challenge?  How do you wear your protective styles as they age?
{Ficcare clips from}

Youtube: Veggie and Apple Smoothie

Spinach, celery, carrots, apples, garlic, and ginger .... then apple juice, rice milk, or coconut water ...

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Chapt. III: Maintenance After Highlighting

Previous Posts:
Chemically Highlight Natural Hair?
Chapt. II: Precautions When Highlighting


It's been about 5 months since highlighting my hair.  In terms of maintenance, in all honesty, I haven't had to change my regimen.  (It's the same prepoo, wash, deep condition, seal, and twist.)  What I will emphasize is that 1) your hair's condition prior to highlighting + 2) the precautions taken during the process seem to be more important than anything else.  After highlighting, don't slack on your hair care routine.  Some people also benefit from increased protein conditioning.  :o)

Loo's Lip Balm Mix

It's that time of year again!  

I ran out of my homemade body butter so this weekend I went to mixing.  Instead of doing the usual body butter mix, I whipped up a simple body oil (recipe coming soon) and lip balm.  (By the way, my body butters/oils are more like ankle-knee-elbow butters/oils; I use Kiss My Face Lavender Shea Lotion on the rest of my body.)

For the lip balm recipe, I used:
• 2 parts shea butter
• 1 part grapeseed oil
• 1 part (or less) honey
• (a few drops for color) burgundy lip gloss

The instructions: Soften the shea butter by melting it only slightly in a pot on the stove.  (If your shea butter is already soft, there is no need to melt it.)  Mix in the grapeseed oil then follow with the honey.  Lastly add a few drops of lip gloss (or lipstick) for color.  (This prior step is optional.)  Allow the mix to set, and that's it!  You have your lip balm.

For other lip balm recipes, check this earlier post.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Healthy Hair Feature: NowIamnappy

1) Are you natural, relaxed, texlaxed, or transitioning? (And how long?)
I'm natural and on June 20, I will be 3 years natural.

2) What mistakes have you made in your hair care journey?
I've made a few mistakes. Early on I learned the importance of protective styles but one winter, I thought I would be cute and wear my fro for the whole winter. By spring my ends were rough and breaking and I had to trim my hair almost 2 inches . My other mistake I made was going to the hair salon to get my hair straightened. Right from the start there were warning signs that the experience wasn't going to be good but somehow I let her not only blow dry my hair and rip through my ends, but press it and then use a curling iron on it. Not to mention she cut my BSL hair to APL because she wanted to make it even, something I did not ask her for because I never wear my hair straight. In the end, the press was gorgeous but when it came time to wash my hair I had severe heat damage in some areas. I trimmed those right away and went directly into protective styling. I'm happy to say 6 months later I gained those 3 inches she cut of, and my hair is thriving again.

3) What is your current HEALTHY HAIR routine?
Currently I am in a hair challenge to grow my hair to BSL in 6 months, so my hair mainly stays in protective styles. I shampoo my hair bimonthly and cowash once per week followed by a weekly deep condition. After detangling in the shower I put my hair in big twists and air dry. Once dry I style my hair into an updo which lasts all week until its time to wash again. I do however sometimes allow myself to wear my hair down on the weekends, its not always fun to keep my hair locked away.

4) Do you have a HEALTHY BODY routine? If so, what is it?
I'm actually just getting back into being healthy again, I recently moved and allowed myself to slip a little. But, I'm going to back to exercising 3x a week drinking 8-10 glasses of water and day and incorporating more raw foods into my diet. My main problem is sugar so I'm trying to eliminate all candy from my diet once again.

5) Do you have any advice for those seeking healthy tresses?
I would definitely say patience is the key and really learning what your hair needs. For me I use all natural products and very few commercial lines. I prefer to mix my own products and stick with things like aloe vera, shea butter, and oils. Also its so important to do protective styles when your looking to grow out your hair. Some people dont like they way their hair looks in twists or braids, but there's so many styles out there that you can do to protect in your ends besides the usual and thats why I started a fotki and youtube to help people looking for simple protective styles/updos.

NowIamnappy can be found at:


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