Sunday, April 13, 2014

Saving Our Daughters!?



When I first began my hair journey, I was considering going natural, but for what reason other than a "style", I didn't have one.
  • I didn't hate myself
  • I saw growing long healthy relaxed hair was possible
  • I did not have a daughter looking up to me.

Well every since I found out that Paisley was a girl, I went back and forth contemplating whether or not I should transition. Hearing naturals say that they transitioned for their daughters, to teach them to love their hair, it is admirable. After all, who wants their child to have self esteem issues? What mother wouldn't give the world for their child, much less their hair.

So what was stopping me? Well mostly the fact that transitioning is HARD...I would never BC, and  long term transitioning is just plain old hard if you can't commit to protective styles. So with every relapse to the texlax/relaxer I would try to make myself feel better by trying to convince myself that my hair has no reflection upon her self esteem.

My husband said it best "Just explain to her that she can't do what grown ups do." In saying that my choice to relax my hair or wear it straight, is a decision that I can knowledgeably make as an adult, she can not.

Although that made a lot of sense, I couldn't help but think, "When she looks up at mommy, she will see beauty. She will look up to me, want to look like me...I do matter in her perception of what is beautiful!"

That thought haunted me like a ghost.....UNTIL,

until, I put that thought along with my husband's statement: "She will look up to me, want to look like me. BUT she can not do things that grown ups do."

When she looks up to me, she won't just see straight hair, she will see high heels, she will see make up, and a wine glass :-)
If I were natural, she would want to wear lipstick like mommy, wear high heels like mommy, things that mommy chooses to wear, just like mommy chooses to straighten her hair. Paisley can not yet make those same choices.

However, I do still matter in her perception of what is beautiful, I can and will still have an impact on how she will feel about her own hair.

As parents we have to always be conscious of the things that we say and attitude that we project to any aspect of our kids lives, they pick up on that and gravitate to those same attitudes. We are all they know, we are their truth, of course they adopt our beliefs, thoughts and even opinions.

I was relaxed by my mom at like 4 or 5...have no recollection of my natural hair type, or even what it was like to get it combed, but I always grew up thinking that I had "bad" or unmanageable hair. To this day, I battle myself telling myself that I must be a 4B, for my mom to have relaxed it, even though my new growth looks close to those that are 4A....it is just engraved in my brain that I have "real ni**a hair...."yes that is what was said to me as a child.

So my point in saying all of that is that if you display a positive attitude about your children's hair, they too, will see it in a positive light.

  • Propery comb/manipulate it.
When detangling, combing, or brushing, start from the ends to the roots, carefully and painlessly working through the kinks and knots. ALWAYS moisturize before doing any type of manipulating. No snatching, no yanking, no breaking combs in the kid's hair.
  • Use proper hair utensils designed for their hair type.
Use wide tooth combs for kinky/curly hair, not small tooth combs or rat tail combs.
Use head bands or ponytail holders that will not easily tangle.
  • Develop a set regimen to maintain manageability.
Kind of self explanatory, but develope a routine specifically for her/him. They should not have the same identical routine or products used as you or their siblings. Find products that promote moisture and manageability, methods that reduce breakage, and styles that promote retention.
  • DON'T CALL IT NAPPY!
Uplift her hair, speak of it confidently, talk it up! Tell her it is beautiful, unique. Style it in ways that makes her proud and confident. If you seem to come in to trouble, don't talk bad about it, or appear frustrated. I encountered this with my son once, my mom and aunt are still the same.
My aunt will say to them "Ohh you got some nappy a$$ hair", or to me...in front of them.

One day my oldest asked me why is his hair so nappy. He has a high top cut or whatever it is called, and it has to be picked out every morning.  When he asked me that, I felt bad. He is my son, to me he is perfect...and I want him to see that in himself, so to contribute any part of himself a negative, just plain old hurt me.

I explained to him right then and there that his hair was not nappy, that it was just really curly, and sometimes the curls can get snagged on the comb or pick and that is why we have to take our time picking it out.
I can't say that he has mentioned it since then, but I hope I shut out any negative thoughts about himself and/or his hair.

  • Listen to your child and their hair.
If there are styles that she/he absolutely love and highly request, take note of those, those are the styles that they like, they make them feel happy, comfortable, and confident.

If there are styles that they tend to dislike, even if you like it mom, perhaps your child doesn't see it as being so complementive.

If you are combing and your child is jumping, clutching, or tensing up, you need a new method. It hurts...stop reevaluate your techniques!

As I mentioned earlier do not have "One size fits all products." If using one product seems to make their hair hard or dry, ditch it, and try a different a product.




Bottom line: Whether relaxed or natural, if you love your daughters hair, they will love it as well, you teach them to be proud and they will.!








Are you relaxed? Natural? How does your daughter respond to your hair? How have you helped or hindered the process?

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Wash Day!

So more of my family and friends are becoming interested in hair care! YAY!!! Explaining a regimen may sound like a lot, trying to search for pertinent information in a blog, may be overwhelming. So to make things easier I decided to blog my wash days, and high light throughout the week!

Hopefully visualizing what I am doing to my hair can help others to get a more accurate idea.


Sunday was #WashDay
My wash days are nothing fancy....I simply cowash with Aussie Miraculously Smooth conditioner.
Method:

-Part hair in sections (2 or 4)
-Place conditioner on roots/scalp and work your way down.
-Rinse.
-Repeat on other side.
-I do it twice.

*Detangle*
-With hair still in sections.
I add more conditioner to that section and ONLY detangle hair under running water in shower.
I ONLY detangle using my Tangle Teezer.

My method of detangling is what has proven to work best for me and my hair.
You may have to try out different detangling utensils and methods for your hair.

*TShirt Dry*
-I blot dry using a tshirt, because it is less harsh than using bath towels.

*Leave In*
-used Dark N Lovely.

*Oiled Scalp*
-Liquid Gold Sulfur Oil.

Tossed in a bun and let air dry.

MONDAY

*Tea Rinse*
-On dry hair....I drenched in Black Tea.
(had unexpected errands to run, so by the time I made it back home, my hair had dried.)

*Deep Conditioned*
-On dry hair, I applied Aussie 3 Minute Miracle
(did that on top of the black tea rinse, though I would not reccomend anyone else doing it. Black tea can be very drying. It did not make my hair dry, but everyones hair will react differently to certain things.)

Also let the deep conditioner sit over night.

TUESDAY

-Rinsed Deep Conditioner Out.
-Leave In : Dark N Lovely
-Moisturized: Elasta QP Mango Butter
-Sealed: JBCO
-Oiled Scalp: JBCO

Wednesday

*GHE*
- Part hair in sections
-Moisturize: Elasta QP Mango Butter
-Oil Scalp: Liquid Gold Sulfur Oil
-Place plastic cap over head.
-Tie head scarf around cap
-Allow to sleep over night.


Thursday- Saturday, working and will be wigging it.



*This was not a typical wash week for me, usually I do not break my wash day into two days. I usually cowash and DC in the same day, but my schedule this week kind of threw me off a bit.*


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Sunday, April 6, 2014

A Journey is A Journey


A journey by definition reads:
  • trip somewhere: a trip or expedition from one place to another
  • process of development: a gradual passing from one state to another regarded as more advanced, e.g. from innocence to mature awareness
  • travel somewhere: to travel to a place or over a particular distance


  •    In this sense we referencing the second definition "the process of development; a gradula passiong from one state to another, regarded as more advanced."

    A journey could be a baby going from the crawling to walking, babbling to speaking in full sentences, a journey, like my hair, going from an ignorant (unknowledgable) state, to becoming aware and making more educated based decisions.

    Once I learned how certain products or ingredients effected my hair, I made a decision based on that knowledge to refrain from using them again. No matter how tempted I am, if a product contain Mineral Oil within the first 5 ingredients, it is not even a question, the answer is NO!

    There are hair products that did me wrong, no matter how good of a review one blogger may give it, may make it sound like a godsend, no matter how good of a sale it is on, if it does not agree with my hair, again the answer is NO!


    I say all of that to introduce my health and fitness journey. HEALTH AND FITNESS are the key words. Usually I just want to lose weight, by any means necessary. Which has proven to do just the opposite, so today I focus on health and fitness, weight loss is secondary.\

    What is the difference?
    You may be wondering. I went to the gym today, weighed in.  My weight this week, was the same as last week. I became discouraged, and sad and did not feel like working out. "It's all for nothing!", I pouted.
    Had health and fitness been the core reason, I would not have even weighed myself, or been bothered my the lack of progression.

    So with my health and fitness journey, I will be focusing on making healthier, heart happy decisions. Food, exercises, parties, ect.


    The plan is exercise at least 3x a week for an hour, try 5x if I can
    Eat clean 5x a week
    Drink at least 1 gallon of water daily.
    Measure myself every two weeks,
    and weigh myself only once a month!

    With accepting that this is a lifestyle change, I am accepting that this will take longer than I would like it to. I have to train myself to say no, eat better. I have to steer away from everything that I have always known, and learn to really resist temptation. It will take a lot of effort and willpower, but I am ready!

    I am claiming success, and putting it in the center of my universe.

    Thursday, April 3, 2014

    Fitness Friday: Bottoms up!

    Today's post is centered on water intake. Water is your body's principal chemical component and makes up about 60 percent of your body weight. Every system in your body depends on water.


    Besides the basic health related benefits and great skin that drinking water offers, many are interested in the role that it plays in weight loss, like myself.


    So I have never been much of a water drinker...I don't drink juice or sodas (much) either...I just don't drink :-/ I could literally go all day and only drink maybe 8 ounces of water.

    For the longest, I would try to drink a gallon a day, that seemed just impossible I mean WHO can actually do that? Well I am proud to announce that for the past four days I have finally tackled that task!!

    LET ME TELL YOU HOW!

    1. Buy a jug that you can take anywhere with you!
    2.Exercise
    3. Feeling hungry? DRINK!!!!

    I bought me a 2.2 Liter water jug, and realized that 1.5 jugs would make 1 gallon.So it started with me drinking water first thing upon waking up, before eating anything. I then realized that if I take it with me everywhere I go, I would always have time to drink up! Most of the time I use the excuse of having a life to not being able to drink all day. Well in the car, at a stop light, I chug it....often times, my bladder feels like it is going to burst and I quickly regret that decision....I am still working out the kinks lol. I also noticed that when I exercise that is a gauranteed way to get more water in...so make sure you add exercise into your regimen! Lastly, I realized that whenever my mouth would get watey (salivating) I tend to snack...well I now recognize that as a sign of thirst, so whenever I think of snacking, I drink water instead...all of this has allowed me to get more water in.

    So yes drinking more water has made me eat less, not less meals per se, but less snacking in general. Water also makes you feel full...so if you have been drinking water all day and are feeling full, when your mouth gets watery your brain is more likely to recognize that as thirst, opposed to hunger.

    This is day 4 for me. I am posing a pro at this, still I am proud of myself, and hope to keep it up! I can say that it is about training your body to do what you want it to do. If you don't want to snack, you will have to fight through some temptations until your body realizes that it isn't going to happen, and the cravings will eventually begin to subside. If you want to drink more water, like me, you may have to force yourself to do so, don't just drink when you "feel" thirsty. A lot of times me misconstrue the signs for thirst to being that of hunger, hence the fact that many of us eat wayyyy more than we drink.

    When in reality...we can not live without any water intake for more than a week, while we can make it up to 10 weeks without food, that lets me know that water is pretty important!

    Well I just wanted to share with you all this week's fitness milestone!!! YAYY ME!!  Truly trying to convert this weight loss/ team healthy journey into a lifestyle, trying to make it my home!

    Thank you all for reading, hope you lovelies have an amazing weekend, and remember...

    DRINK UP!
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    Wednesday, April 2, 2014

    3 Steps To Longer Hair!


    1.  Moisturize

    Weekly Deep conditioning, baggying, GHE, sprtizing, moisture creams, leave in conditioners, cowashing, DRINK PLENTY OF WATER!!!

    2. Strengthening

    Protein treatments, protein based conditioners and creams & proper protein intake.

    3. Protect

    Protect ends from becoming split or broken by opting for protective styles;
    Braids, sew ins, weaves, wigs, buns, Bantu knots, ect. 

    Another way to protect is by limiting manipulation & usage of direct heat. 
    Low manipulation styles; braid out, twist out, Bantu knot outs, wash n go's, ect. 

    Alternatives to direct heat would include, roller sets opposed to flat ironing or blow outs & using the cool setting on hand held blow dryers or opting for air dry methods. 


    What are your go to tips for heathy hair growth??? 
     Plz Share!!!