Wednesday, 16 April 2014

28 months of natural hair growth

Hi every one,

Its been ages since i last posted about my hair. A lot has been going on, and is still going on. I have not had time to do an in depth post on the specifics so this is a sketchy  documentation of  my hair  progress so far.

Without any further ado, here is what i have been up to .


Hair Regimens and Styles

In my quest to find a simple regimen that is well suited for my busy student schedule, i have experimented with a few regimens. Am not going into details of my wash day, just the different wash day intervals i tried and a general over view of what i have been doing style wise.

Mini Mini twists  

I tried spacing my wash day for a month and my choice of style was mini twist which lasted for two (2) months.

Pros

  • Easy and versatile styling
  • spent less than 10 mins on my hair each day (thinking about hair can be so tiresome at times, thank you mini twists for the break.)
  • retained some length
Con

OMG!!!!! hands down, my number one and only con  for this regime was the time it took to install and take down the twists. It took literally the whole day plus a little of the next day. Also taking the twist down was no walk in the park. It took almost a whole week since i had to loose in sections for lack of free time for my hair.

Lessons learnt:  Mini twist are a no go area for me at least not till my school program ends. Although i retained a lot of length. I just can't seem to get over twisting my hair for that long and am definitely not looking forward to taking them down.

Just some random pictures of what my hair has been doing

Updo styles

With updo styles i washed my hair every two weeks and styled loose hair in simple updo styles once a week.

Pros

  • simple enough.
  • once hair was styled i didn't think much about hair except i was bored with the style.

Con

  • Hand in hair syndrome ( i have a serious problem with this, i just keep finding my hand in my hair)
  • A lot of time spent researching  and experimenting with updo's. Too much styling and restyling  leading to a lot of manipulation.
  • getting bored with the style in less than a week ( i don't know why, i just get bored)
  •  breakage( probably due to handling my hair too often, my poor kinks couldn't take my constant handling)

Lessons learnt:  I have a serious case of hand in hair syndrome so i think i need styles that keep me from playing around with my kinks too often.

kinky twist

I tried going two weeks in between wash days. it was vacation season and i didn't want to be messing around with my hair so i figured kinky twist was the way to go.

 Pros

  • Just like mini twists this style gave me versatility 
  • spent as little as 10 mins or less each day on my hair

Con

  • Installing was time consuming but not to the extent of the mini twist (hmm!! those twists were something else)  
  • take down wasn't so dramatic but it took over 3 hrs.
Lessons Learnt: For now this style is too time consuming to be a regular style for me.

Wash and go

I nearly forgot this,  i tried the wash and go regimen.

ahhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!! ( Am not being overly dramatic) this was hands down my worst regimen and style ever. where do i start from, the tangles, the layers and layers of gel, the clumping in sections. It was horrible.I must say there was nothing simple about this regimen, i just wore my wash and go in a puff through out the week and that was the end of that regimen. I won't even talk about the wash day after that. My experience was horrible.
My wash and go
It does not look so bad at a glance you may say, i even got lots and lots of compliments..... but don't be fooled. My Kinks and i were so exhausted from the whole process.

Lessons learnt: As the vlogger glam fun sang in the very funny video below, i quote "Wash and go don't work on nappy hair" at least not on my 4b/c hair. This does not mean i can't achieve the style but i ask my self , is it worth it? Wash and go is supposed to be a carefree regimen but that's not what i found.



Wigs

After a very very long thought about how to wear my hair while learning to swim. I decided to try wigs. i have written about protective styling with wigs before . For my maintaining my hair,i just Co washed every other day in corn rows . Wigs give me the ease of taking care of my hair while swimming. Am still trying to figure out how other naturals say they swim with ease with natural hair compared to when they were relaxed, for me its still a lot of work.

Pros


  • Easy hair maintenance especially with my swimming classes. 
  • I didn't have to detangle on every wash and i did not have any traumatic experience when i finally did at the end of the week. (Yay!!!! go corn rows. )

Con

  • Lack of styling versatility, i get bored easily with the wigs, and i miss styling my hair.
  • My hair got dry quickly, so i had to up my moisturizing game.

Lessons learnt:
Wigs are not so bad, they allow me and my kinks to rest from each other in terms of styling but that does not being negligence is permitted.

Present Hair Style: Crotchet Braid with Marley hair

This is my first attempt at Crotchet braids and its not even a week old yet at the time of this post.This style was done with Marley hair, i didn't take into account that this type of hair had a lot of  volume, by the time i was done i could not believe the gigantic fro i had, so i twisted it up and dipped it into hot water to give it that twist out look. I also removed some strands of hair because am not brave enough to rock a full on fro yet.

I will probably update this post much later with the pros and cons i encounter with this style.


Crotchet Braids with Marley Hair





So far my kinks and i are still going strong , sincerely natural hair is a lot of work but  no matter how frustrated i get some times with my kinks i will still love it .
Some day am going to  look back and smile and be glad i went through this stage.

Friday, 20 September 2013

Natural Hair growth: Exercise and Healthy habits


Hello all,



You know how other people keep telling you of how good something is and keep raving about it and urging you to try it but you never seem to be able to do it, although you know that they are right. The concept of exercise and drinking enough water were like that to me.

 I had my hair in jumbo kinky twist  in the month of august. And I was so shocked ( although it was a happy shock) at the length of hair that had grown by the time I loosed my twists. Here's why i was shocked,  usually my hair grows less than half an inch in a month,  my hair could not fit into a pony tail, i could barely do very high puffs and just four weeks later it’s able to. Also i noticed that my kinks feel,so soft ,more elastic and retain moisture better after my wash day.
puff one month after
hair one month ago

Bun
hair one month after

In retrospect, I did not do anything different in terms of my regime and diet, which I think has been on the decline lately but!!!!  I had increased my physical activity by enrolling in a salsa class and also been religiously drinking a lot of water.

How does this all contribute to optimum hair growth? yea, i would like to say Optimum because  hair still grows either way, kind of like a case of two plants where one is grown by the river side with adequate supply of water and one is grown in a place where there are only occasional showers of water, assuming all other growth requirements are met the river side plant should experience a more optimum growth and its appearance would be more lush and green when compared to the other plant.

Now enough about plants, from basic biology we are told that water makes up about 60- 70% of the body, Water hydrates the body and helps to regulate the circulatory system which feeds the hair follicle, which then in turn stimulates hair growth.There fore insufficient amount of water in the body to a lot of complications in the body but in terms of hair growth it could lead to a malnourished follicle and stunted hair growth.

Also, regular exercise increases blood circulation which may allow for more nutrients to reach the follicles.

This brings me to my decision to drink water adequately and to be more physically active. I would be doing an update on this in December which coincides with my two years kinkyversary. Am still devising ways of keeping myself in check though, would keep you posted as more events unfold.

Protective styling with Wigs


I had an idea to protect my hair for the rest of the year with wigs , which later became a month plan,  but…..its been barley a week and am almost giving up.

The problem
Am just so bored with it, am tempted to abandon my wigs for maybe twists because it would give me the best of both worlds that is styling flexibility and protection from myself and other elements ,still thinking about it though ,am really in no mood for close to 12 or more hours of twisting. What to do??  What to do??

On the Bright side
Wigs are actually great as they give you and your hair a break and allow you the ease of caring for your hair since  it doesn’t hinder you from carrying out your usual routine. I have my hair in cornrow in front and flat twists at the back because  that section is really fine and cornrows  seem to  put too much tension on it.

My current regime with the wigs
  • Nightly scalp massages
  • Moisturize hair lightly with water and seal at night with  Shea butter- olive oil mixture.
  • co-wash as needed(depending on how my exercise plan goes)
  • Remove shed hair weekly and finger detangle with Shea butter- olive oil mixture.
  • Wash hair with sulphate free shampoo,do hot oil treatment with  olive and protein treatment  on hair once a month.
  • As I mentioned in my Natural hair growth:Exercise and Healthy habits post I would be drinking a lot of water precisely about 2.25 liters of water every day and a moderate exercise of  30 minutes each day.


That’s pretty much it. Now all  i need is the will power to keep the wig on my head..

Thursday, 25 July 2013

Schooling and Natural hair care Wahala(troubles)!!!!

I recently enrolled in a post graduate school and its been really hectic!!! balancing school work and thinking about hair has been HARD.

 Here's what i decided to do 

Make simple protective/low manipulative styles that would take very little time to install, take down  maintain and would last for at least 2 weeks.

Jumbo Twist

For the first two weeks of school i wore big or jumbo two strand twist here's how it did.

Time to install: it took roughly two 2 hrs not so bad considering i have done kinky twist that took almost 12 hrs to install (Not kidding guys).

Maintenance: Moisturizing hair and scalp with either water or a mixture of aloe-Vera juice and water and sealing ends with Shea butter was no biggie, but getting the twist to stop shrinking was a problem cause my hair is neck length at the back and a little past chin length at the sides. (Nights and Nights of bobby pinning).

Take down:Take down was pretty quick about 30 minutes but detangling !!!! was so great a hassle probably because i decided to try a new method of loosing all the twist before detangling, which was a very very bad idea. 

At the end of the two weeks my jumbo twists were at a maximum frizz level so i wasn't really feeling them anymore so they had to go.

High Puff

After the twist and tiresome detangling session, i had no time to wash my hair that weekend( too much school work and activities) so i stretched my hair in braids and the next day made a high puff which i intend to wear through out the week. Would probably wear a puff for another week after washing my hair.

High puff

so far, the puff is doing great,

Installing time: Installing time is probably just 5 minutes or less.

Maintenance:  moisturizing the puff  and hair at the surface with water and sealing with Shea butter then scarfing it up for the night. In the morning i just fluff and accessorize .
i know i should stretch the puffs with either braids or twist but i just cant be bothered to do that every night, would have tried the scrunchy stretching method but i can't seem to find my scrunchy any where.

Fears: i just hope when wash day comes am not going to have so many single strand knots and tangles to deal with (fingers crossed).

Future hair style

When i get a little break from school work, i would like to try havanna twists, but if there are any other styles you think would be simple and low manipulative, take very little time to install, take down , maintain and would last for at least 2 weeks please feel free to drop your ideas below.

Thankies!!!












Thursday, 4 July 2013

Bun with Kinky hair Extensions (Marley hair)

So!!!!! i just got my hair out of kinky twists (kinky twist update coming soon), and i had a graduation ceremony to attend by the weekend.Against my better judgement to hang on to my kinky twist for a while longer, i gave in to taking them out because i missed my hair terribly.

Now i was reunited with my kinks but.......clueless on what to do with my hair, it sure can be stressful thinking of what style to wear especially when there's an event coming up (don't want to wind up looking like a hot mess cause my kinks are very unpredictable)

The hair style that won the style search was " Bun with kinky hair Extensions (Marley hair)".

Here's what i came up with by the wee hours of the night.






I liked the way the the extension blended with my hair, below is a picture of my hair with out the extension, Please excuse the sickly looking scrunchy, i actually used rubber  threads to hold the hair at the center, not so sure it qualifies to be called a pony tail though...


 hair with out the extension


Here's what i used to create the style

Bobby pins
Alcohol free styling gel
Elastic Rubber bands
Kinky extension (Royal silk )
Satin Scarf

Hair preparation 

  • I worked on freshly washed and conditioned hair
  • Partially Stretched with braids (yea partially cause i took out the braids before it was properly dry) 

Here is a video i watched on how to make this style

How i did mine


  • I put my hair into one pony tail and secured the fly away's with bobby pins
  • Made my edges and the top layer of my hair smooth with gel
  • Attached the kinky extension with an elastic rubber band to the base of the pony tail
  • Now this step was a bit difficult but here is what i did to ensure the extension was secured to the pony tail, i separated  two small sections from the extension then wrapped them one after the other around the pony tail before proceeding to make the bun.
  • Tied down my hair with my satin scarf and went to bed 
  • The next morning i untied the scarf and voila!!!



Thoughts on this style

  • Not bad for my first try, would definitely be trying this again soon   
  • Would Allow my hair to properly dry in the braids for a better stretch(wasn't so patient the first time)



In all i had fun with my hair looking forward to a repeat soon.