Friday, January 31, 2014

Hair Diary || Jumbo Twists and Then What?

Wore small twists for 3 weeks.
Right now I am wearing jumbo twists (not pictured) in an flat-twist updo after about three weeks in small twists.  After that, I'm not quite sure what I want to do with my hair yet.  I have been craving braid extensions -- as I always tend to do during the winter season -- but I don't know that I have to patience to do them myself nor the courage to let someone else do them for me.  I have also been toying with doing back-to-back weekly jumbo twists in February, but that may be too much manipulations.  What is a gal to do?  I have some things to consider ...

... in the meantime, here are a few more hair pics:

Back shot of the small twists.

Side shot.  Circa week #2.
I undid a few twists in the front to create bangs ... and jazz things up a bit.
Better shot of the front bangs.

The new batch of whipped shea butter (the multi-oil one) that I mentioned in an earlier post.
Definitely loving it.

And it melts instantly.

'Til next time!

Mixology || Coconut Banana Deep Conditioner

Here is a yummy recipe (from The BraunSugar Blog) for conditioning your tresses!

1/4 cup coconut milk
2 bananas
2 tbsps coconut oil
1 tsp honey

Combine all ingredients together in a food processor or blender.
Blend until extra smooth.  Make sure that there are no banana lumps.  (They are hard to remove later.)


Check out The BraunSugar's post for more details.

Thursday, January 23, 2014


This product review was provided by my sister (whom you can find on Fotki).

I received a full 8oz size of Camille Rose Coconut Water Penetrating Hair Treatment from The Coconut Water Collection No. 02. The owner of Camille Rose, Janell Stephens,  was kind enough to send it along as an additional goody with an Aloe Whipped Butter Gel replacement. I had ordered the Camille Rose Aloe Whipped Butter Gel from another online shop and it was leaving a white cast in my hair. I contacted the company and they sent along a fresh replacement jar of the gel, a sample size of their Algae Renew Deep Conditioner and a full 8 oz size of their new Coconut Water Penetrating Hair Treatment. There was no charge for any of the items I received and I was not asked by the company to provide this review. 

The Coconut Water Penetrating Hair Treatment is described as a treatment that "combines super hydrating, thirst-quenching coconut water, aloe vera juice, tropical butters and oils to deeply penetrate and provide maximum moisture and shine."

Some key ingredients include coconut water, palm kernel oil, aloe vera juice, argan oil, hydrogenated vegetable oil, hydrolyzed keratin and a bunch of other hair nourishing oils and butters. 

I love that it contains a small amount of hydrolyzed keratin, which helps to fortify the hair so that it retains its texture and holds onto moisture. Keratin is also the most compatible with hair since hair = keratin + water. 

My Hair:

I have mainly low porosity, fine 4a hair that is high porosity and prone to breakage at my crown. My hair is also protein sensitive, so I use moisture-based products in my regimen and use light protein in moderation. 

How to Use:

There is no description on how to use the 
Coconut Water Penetrating Hair Treatment
, but it is described on the front as a "concentrated rinse-out conditioner for silky, soft hair" so I assume you would use it like other conditioners after shampooing. 

How I Used Product:

I cleansed my hair then applied the Treatment.

The texture of the 
 is thick and creamy. The color is a light gray/off-white and it smells like a coconut cream pie with vanilla wafers ;]  It's a pleasant natural smell that doesn't linger. 

As I applied the Treatment, I noticed the slip, creaminess and observed how it was absorbing into my hair.  I did not have to use a lot and I was able to apply it to wet hair without it foaming up.  I rinsed it out after 5-7 minutes, but I assume you can leave it in for more or less time.  This is naked hair right after rinsing out the Treatment.

My hair felt moisturized and had a high sheen. I could feel the oils and butters in my hair after rinsing, but my hair felt nourished and not coated. The Treatment also gave my hair a nice elasticity.  As my hair air-dried, it remained moisturized and springy. I did notice that the Treatment did not leave my hair as smooth or defined as my usual moisturizing deep treatment does, but it was surprisingly more moisturized and detangled. I proceeded to style my hair and let it air dry. 

Overall, I really enjoyed using the 
Coconut Water Penetrating Hair Treatment. 
The oils, butters and keratin all gave a nice balance of moisture and elasticity. I am pleased that Janell has created a product valuable to any textured hair routine. The Treatment is not a filler product, but is useful if your hair benefits from conditioning treatments that provide moisture and strength---the cornerstone of most hair regimens.

This review is my personal experience and impressions of the product. 

Protective Style Lookbook || Twisted Side Bun

By popular demand, this is a series showcasing various protective hair styles.  Protective styling does not have to be boring. :o)

Model: Gabe

Difficulty level: 2/5

Description: Chunky twists that flat twisted into a side bun.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Healthy Hair on Youtube: EClark

So, I had to find out who the beautiful natural behind all these photos (on pinterest, on hair care sites, etc.) is.  Well, her name is Ebony Clark.

She has gorgeous natural hair that she has been growing for up to nine years.  She also does fabulous and creative styles with her tresses.  Check out her hair story below and her YouTube channel!

Study || Olive Oil, Antioxidant Power, and Skin Protection

A 2000 study suggests that topical application of virgin olive oil after UVB exposure can reduce UVB-related skin tumors.  The thought is that the antioxidant power of the oil is responsible for this benefit.  (Extra virgin olive oil is said to have a "potent antioxidant effect".)


Saturday, January 11, 2014

Hair Diary || Loose Twists Undone + New Products?

It feels like a long time since I've posted in this series.  Well, here we go:

I wore my loose twists on flat-ironed hair for three weeks, and that was initially fun. I primarily did braid-outs (I love texture) on the loose twists and did a range of styles from pinned updos to buns.  After the the three weeks (which was perfect timing because I was tired of the hairstyle at that point), I switched to my usual twists for the month.  Lately, I've been itching to hide my hair under some braid/twist extensions.  We'll see if that itch needs to be scratched come February ...

Other than that, my PJ-ism (product junkism) came back momentarily due to product sales and coupons.  Stay tuned for future product reviews ...

And now for more hair pics!

Day 1 of loose twists on flat-ironed hair.  You can barely see them.

Day 1 of loose twists on flat-ironed hair.  You can barely see them.
Week #2.  Braid-out on loose twists.  The separate sections you see are actually loose twists. 

Going "red" for the day (via temporary red hair spray).  Deja vu from a few years ago?

Detangled (with fingers) and conditioning.

From roller set to twisting, and on the same day!  I didn't let the set dry all the way because of time, but again, it did a WAY better job than my other air drying + stretching techniques.  In the pic, my hair is about 70-80% dry.
Okay, I can explain.  My current Lemon Desert Essence is becoming more of a "warm" weather shampoo, so I bought this Coconut Desert Essence to be using during the cold season.

The Brazilian Keratin Conditioner was the only reasonable protein conditioner I could find while on vacation.  (I didn't pack my conditioners with me.)  I actually like it though!

The ApHogee was bought prior to all of these (and also happened to be the one I left at home while on vacay).  It is my go-to when I need a slightly stronger protein fix than ORS.

And, lastly, the avocado oil is for moisturizing my face at night.  I like it so much that I added a bit to my shea butter mixture.

Stay tuned for the remaining four products I purchased, thanks to a BUY ONE GET ONE FREE deal ...

Mixology || My Multi-Oil Whipped Shea Butter for Winter

So with the winter being extra cold and drying (and with the luck of my last batch finishing), I decided to whip up a largely oil-based batch this time.  (I actually used to do this in the past but never with this many oils.)  Each oil has its purpose, and my hair is LOVING this concoction for the winter.  It is just what I need!

½ cup shea butter
2 tbsp coconut oil (penetrates and protects the strands against combing/styling breakage)
2 tbsp olive oil (moisturizing; possibly penetrates the strands)
2 tbsp avocado oil (moisturizing; possibly penetrates the strands)
1 tbsp grapeseed oil (to protect against moisture loss; sealing oil)
1 tbsp castor oil (primarily for sheen and sealing)
few drops of jasmine essential oil (optional, for fragrance)

Break the shea butter into small pieces and place in a bowl.  Using a hand mixer, whip the shea butter until fluffy and the chunks are gone.  (If your shea butter is too hard, melt it only slightly to soften it a bit.)  Add in the remaining ingredients and mix thoroughly with the hand mixer.  Finito! 

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Healthy Hair Feature || Taiwo

1. What made you go natural?  How long have you been natural?

II big chopped my senior year of high school in December of 2010, so I’ve been natural for about three years now. It was one of my New Year’s Resolutions. I returned to natural because throughout my high school years, I had a terrible perception of myself. As my hair became lifeless and limp from my relaxers, I also envied those who were perceived as having “pretty hair”. I grew tired of how detrimental and unhealthy those thoughts were, and how they negatively impacted my self-esteem. I really just needed a change, and I desired to become more comfortable with who I was. So I realized that I wanted to experience true self-love by embracing the one thing I hated most about myself, which was my hair.

2. Did you transition? If so, for how long? 
I did not transition per-se, but more so underwent a provisional period before I big chopped, if that makes sense. I decided to stop getting relaxers altogether the summer before my senior year, but still continued getting braids or twists. When I chose to wear the braids or twists, I was trying to figure out when I would take a leap in big chopping and wearing my hair natural.  

3. What is your Healthy Hair routine?
Because I am a working college student, I try to keep it my hair routine as simple as possible. My hair is in protective styles much of the time. I also only use natural and organic products for my hair, and I am consistent with using the same products in my hair routine. 

Every 2-3 weeks, I finger detangle with a conditioner (currently Suave Naturals Tropical Coconut) on damp hair and section my hair into about 6-8 twists. I will then apply a hot oil treatment to my scalp (JBCO & rosemary oil) overnight and then get ready for the real wash day. The next day, I will shampoo my scalp and hair with a tablespoon of ACV, Shea Moisture’s Moisture Retention shampoo, and a water mixture. 

I follow up with deep conditioning for about 45 minutes, which usually consists one of my two favourite conditioners, Aubrey Organics Honeysuckle Rose or Yes to Carrots, a variety of oils, and organic honey. Sometimes, I’ll add an egg or yogurt to the mix, but because my hair is already quite coarse and strong, I use protein with caution. 

Once I rinse that out, I begin the styling process with two strand twists as my protective style using my DIY shea butter creme. To refresh my twists for the next 2-3 weeks, I spritz a mixture of water and jojoba oil. When it’s not in protective styles, the process is still the same for braid outs, twist outs, buns, etc.

4. Do you have a Healthy Body routine?  If so, what is it?

My healthy body routine is all-encompassing! :-) Stress, for example, is ridiculous on my body and mind, so when I am stressed I choose to completely forget about what is causing it, and take up any activity to stop the stressors, such as doing something as simple as going for a walk.  

I am very careful about what I eat, and what goes into my body. I pay close attention to how foods affect me. I opt for more greens, plenty of fruits, fishes, and I limit my sugar and processed food intake. I also have a homemade smoothie every morning. I am also “very wary about my dairy” too lol, and have chosen to drink organic sweet almond milk (my favourite!) and a selection of organic or natural yogurts and eggs. Dairy alone breaks the heck out of my skin, so choosing hormone-free options has completely stopped this from happening.

Also, with that being said, the health and look of my skin is also important to me. Because so many skin care products have irritating and harsh ingredients, I use more natural and organic skin products, or I make my own, such as my DIY shea butter creme. I also only use Dudu-Osun (African black soap) to wash my face, and sweet almond oil to moisturise it.

As for the gym, I am guilty of not being consistent but I am working on it! I am currently trying to find a schedule that works for me. But when I have gone to the gym, I always feel amazing afterwards! I will typically exercise for two hours in the evenings (it seems to be the only time where I have, well…time). However, I would ideally like to work out in intervals with an hour in the morning & and an hour or more in the evenings more often throughout the week. Once again, this area is a work in a progress. :-)

5. What advice/tips do you have for naturals?
I would first say to learn to love your hair. Sometimes, it is very easy to develop “hair envy”, resulting in not appreciating the crown that grows from your own head. Secondly, focusing on hair health is more important than hair length, which was something that I used to never value myself, and the reason why I big chopped the second time in June of 2012. However, it makes so much sense. Healthy hair is growing hair, and not all growing hair is healthy! If you are always thinking about obtaining length, then it results in frustration. Natural hair is not a destination to just achieving length, so it’s important to see it as a journey, and to enjoy it for what it is! With that being said, patience is also an integral piece to that.  

6. Where can we find you?
You can find me on my blog:, where I blog about my healthy hair journey. 

And I am on Instagram: taikafilat

Hope to hear from you all soon! :-)

Mixology || Homemade Hair Pomade

Recipe Source: Mommypotamus

1 ounce organic beeswax
1.5 ounces shea butter
2 ounces jojoba oil – "This is a “dry” oil that keeps the formula from being too greasy.

1/8 – 1/4 teaspoon essential oil

  1. When the beeswax is melted, add in shea butter
  2. When the mixture is melted, add jojoba and stir until just melted
  3. Pour mixture into a container and allow to cool slightly, then add essential oil
Recipe Source: Mommypotamus