Pre-Relaxer Wash Day: Why Can’t These Ever Go Right?

This is the fourth and final Pre-Relaxer Wash Day of 2013! You know this is the time when I: Clean, Strengthen and Hydrate!

Unfortunately, these Pre-Relaxer Wash Days have not gone right all year! In February, my hair was so tangled and matted after deep conditioning that I had to spend 35 painful minutes detangling it. In May, the end result of my hair was so oily after deep conditioning with hemp seed oil that it came out limp and gross. In August, I was just so frustrated with my hair not cooperating during roller setting that I blew it dry without flat ironing, only to have it become brittle and break by the time relaxer day rolled around. To keep with tradition, today’s Wash Day wasn’t that great either, but it definitely was the best I’ve had all year (which is not saying much at all).

I was going to do my relaxer application practice, but it was a total failure. My hair was wayyyyyyy too curly and I would have had to tear through it just to apply it! No bueno!!!! No wonder Kim threatened me about coming for a relaxer after air-drying the week before! I just pre-pooed with the V-05 conditioner I was using for practice for about an hour without heat. All week, I have been wearing my twist out which didn’t fall below my shoulders, so I wanted to stretch the hair out before I hopped in the shower and washed it.

Clean – I clarified my hair with my Alterna Life Solutions Clarifying Shampoo, followed by my Alterna Caviar Volume for moisture replenishment. Both of these shampoos are sulfate free.

Strengthen – I did my ApHogee 2 Step Protein Treatment. Since I abhor their conditioner that they include with it, I just bought the bottle of the protein treatment to use with my own deep conditioner. I applied the treatment and sat under the dryer for 20 minutes while it hardened. I then rinsed it out with warm water and applied my Ion Extreme Moisture Cream for 30 seconds to soften the hair.

Hydrate – I applied my Silk Elements MegaSilk deep conditioner for an hour (45 minutes with heat). I rinsed, followed up with Roux for 1 minute, then rinsed again.

This weekend, I knew that I needed a finished style because I am going to be filming some hair tutorials for a project at work (additional details coming soon!) on Monday, so I decided to roller set. I detangled as normal after applying my leave-ins (the usual ones I use for rollersetting except the Carol’s Daughter Monoi Anti-Breakage Repair Spray since I had done a hard protein tx) and noticed that I was losing a lot of hair in the comb. I noticed a band of strands that came out in the shower, but I chalked it up to me doing zero manipulation to my hair the past week. Even as I used the rattail comb to smooth sections out before rolling, I noticed that I had to clean out the comb after each section of my mohawk because it was full of hair! You know I was almost in a panic! It could be a few things: my hormones (I had to go back to my old birth control pill due to the new one breaking me out and I also starting using progesterone cream to help with menstrual migraines), the weather (I had excessive shedding in December of last year) and like I said, no manipulation in the past week. I have had relatively little shedding the past 2 months, so who knows? I will definitely be monitoring it throughout the week and if it is still going on, I will defer my relaxer until its under control.

I rolled my hair as usual, using the black and gray rollers. I wanted to have had a decent styling session this Pre-Relaxer Wash Day, so I took my time rolling my hair and practiced some much-needed patience. When my hair didn’t want to cooperate or the rollers were not placed right, I calmly corrected it. It took me just under an hour to roll my hair today, which is about 10-12 minutes longer than normal. I also added diluted Lotta Body back into my regimen. During previous Wash Days, I noticed as soon as I comb my curls, they just go straight and flat. I think it was because I used too much moisture while rolling (my leave-ins in addition to my setting mix of glycerin and water) and had no setting lotion. Kim told me that I needed to use some, but I wouldn’t hear it! After all, Gennifer in the roller setting video only used water to set her hair, so that’s what I would do … until I got tired of my hair not holding a curl after spending all day on it! Also, setting lotion helps hair dry faster. I sprayed every section of hair to be rolled with diluted Lotta Body (not sure of the ratio … but it was definitely a lighter blue color).

Well, the Lotta Body helped me have crisper curls, but didn’t really cut down on drying time. I was almost dry at 90 minutes, but I stayed under the dryer for just over 2 hours so I could be sure I was dry. Besides, I was reading a good book which makes dryer time more bearable! I took my hair down and applied a bit of Carol’s Daughter Monoi serum to the curls! The curls felt like they had more staying power than curls of prior weeks, but I couldn’t help that my hair felt thinner due to the amount of hair I lost (see below). I combed the curls out and wow … my hair retained some bend (see photos)! It definitely was a roller setting success! Now I know that I need some setting product in my life! I continued to pull shed hairs down my hemline that hadn’t quite released themselves yet, which annoyed me, but whatevs.

I then wrapped my hair up for the evening! I will capture some “next day hair” photos tomorrow or Monday!

These are the curls as soon as I took them out. Most of my hair was rolled on black rollers. I also took a close-up of my ends, as I was very pleased with how they are holding up this relaxer stretch.

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Hair combed out! A success! Hair still has bend at the ends! Also, notice that ball of yarn hair!!! That doesn’t include the countless stragglers that came out afterwards or in the shower! 

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Wash Day and a Twist Out

Greetings friends! Hope everyone is enjoying their weekend!

Today’s Wash Day was inspired by my friend Tracie who was inspired by Donedo on YouTube. Monday, Tracie came in with big, voluminous curls and I asked where she got the inspiration and she shared this twist out video by Donedo. I was inspired to do a twist out again. Honestly, it has been since Summer 2012 since I have done a twist out so I thought I would give it a shot. Today I also simulated the relaxer application by using some cheap conditioner. I need a few trials to ensure I have the timing and smoothing down pat. I got the relaxer in and smooth in about 15 minutes, which is about 2 minutes under what I normally process at. I will do this again next week to give myself additional practice before my relaxer the first week in December.

Here’s how that looked (sorry, the conditioner pretty much disappeared by this point) … oh well, you can enjoy some new growth!)

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So here’s how Wash Day went down:

Pre-Poo: Coconut oil, safflower oil and cheap conditioner for 1 hr 15 minutes, 40 minutes with heat

Shampoo: Amla Legends Body Filler Wash and Alterna Caviar Volume

In-Shower Conditioning Treatment: Ion Extreme Moisture Cream and Alterna Winter Rx Thermal Oil

Deep Conditioner: L’Oreal Total Repair 5 Balm for 1 hr, 40 minutes with heat, final rinse with Roux

Leave-Ins: Alterna Caviar Photo Age Defense, Alterna Caviar Texture Cream, Carol’s Daughter Monoi Anti-Breakage Spray and Carol’s Daughter Monoi Sacred Strengthening Serum

After detangling as normal, I began doing the steps the video showed me. I divided my hair into four quadrants and began twisting in the back. For each twist, I detangled with my fine-tooth comb (like I would if I was roller setting), applied Ion Anti-Frizz Solutions Styling Mist (will do a product review soon!). I twisted 2/3 of the way down, then applied a bit more gel, smoothed by ends, then rolled on the rod. I started in the back, so I did not do flat twists, but across the front, all of my twists were flat. It took me about 50 minutes to twist up my whole head, which is what it takes me to roller set.

I sat under the dryer for an hour and 10 minutes. I was nowhere near dry so I decided that I would have to sleep in them because I did not want to sit under the dryer for 3 hours. Despite me being eager to see the results, it wasn’t all that important! I did take one twist down and saw the end of my hair that I left out was good and curly! My hair also did not feel stiff from the gel. If you notice in the pictures below, you can see where my twists don’t start at the crown. I noticed that Donedo’s didn’t either, and her hair still turned out perfect. Maybe it will work for me!

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I will take and post photos of the finished product tomorrow. Until then, have a great evening!

P.S. Hooray! I finally took advantage of picture gridding!

Next day:

Greetings guys! I got up this morning and took down my twists! Before I took them down, I made sure my twists and hands had serum on them to prevent frizz. I fluffed them a bit and took a look! The curls were perfect! They were springy and bouncy. I really think the gel helped keep them that way. It’s amazing how tight the curls are though! My BSL/MBL length hair is now at neck length! I really wish my hair would stand up into a ‘fro, but I know it won’t!

I pineappled the curls so that they are not hanging down rubbing against things. I am not sure how I plan to wear the curls. I will wear them pinned up or ponytailed. I will take some pictures of the styles I create during the week.

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An Inch for Your Thoughts #17: I Want Candy [Crush]!

I learned about Candy Crush Saga when I went home in early September. I saw my aunt and Kim playing this game and they were deep in thought. Once I got home, I thought I would download it and give it a try …

Oh Lord, did that open Pandora’s Box. I instantly became addicted to it, living for the feedback the man gives with such sayings as “Delicious!” “Tasty!” and that all-coveted “Divine!” as well as beating levels that got progressively harder. There was (and still is) an ugly side of Candy Crush Saga. Sometimes when I ran out of lives and that heart would show up, telling me how long I had to wait, I would bemoan quite loudly, “NOOOOOOO!” I am not on Facebook, so I can’t ask friends for extra lives! I was tempted to sign back up for Facebook with this name: LaShanda “IamonlyherefortheCandyCrushLives” Earnhardt (which is referring to my “hubby,” Dale, Jr.!) I would spend money on extra lives and additional boosters to beat levels. Also, that tune the game makes when you fail the level has become the soundtrack at losing at life period. Nathan will whistle that tune just to prove that I am wrong!

candycruhs

The first week I started playing, when I shut my eyes, all I saw was candy dropping. There was even a time when Nathan was talking to me and I was wondering if his eyes could fall into alignment with his nose to make that “3 in a row” move. Even as recent as this afternoon, I was in the shower rinsing my hair out when I was looking at my shower curtain which has dots on it. I wanted to see if I could find five dots in a row so I could get the color bomb!! Sad, I know. I took a little break from Candy Crush, which lasted all of a week! I had it on both my phone and iPad, but now I just play on the iPad. Having it on my phone would be a disaster, especially at work! It really helps hair drying sessions seem a bit less painful!

candy crush bomb

 

HAHAHHA! My sentiments exactly!

Source: http://www.rottenecards.com/card/174654/sorry-kids-dinners-going-to-be-a-little-late-tonightmamas-got-5-lives-left-and-this-candy-aintgonna-crush-itself

Wash Day and now I am WL-Bound!

It seems like yesterday (actually it was in the spring), that I declared myself MBL-bound after reaching BSL. I now feel quite comfortable claiming MBL length, so I am changing my status to WL-Bound! Yep … barring any setback, I am par to reach it in late spring/early summer, which is on par with the goals I set almost 2 years ago at the beginning of my HHJ.

Well, it has been a while since I have posted a Wash Day post, but I thought that I would today! For the past two weeks, I have been pre-pooing my hair overnight. I use the same mix of cheapie conditioner, coconut oil and a ceramide oil (hemp or safflower). After I apply the mix, I apply my plastic conditioning cap and wrap it up in a dry turban to protect my bedding. It saves me an hour and with the length of time that it takes me to dry now, any minute I can shave off is welcomed.

I received a sample of Pantene Age Defy shampoo and hair masque. To see how they performed, I just washed with the Pantene Age Defy shampoo (it has sulfates) and did my in-shower conditioning treatment with the hair masque and my Alterna Winter Rx oil. Meh … it definitely was nothing to write home about. I definitely will not be buying it. The best thing about them was the smell. While applying my deep conditioning (KeraPro this week), I noticed that my ends felt a bit bumpy, so I added my MegaSilk to the lower 3rd of my hair. I wrapped my hair in a wet turban topped of my a conditioning cap and sat under the dryer for 45 minutes. Afterwards, I was feeling tired, so I took a nap with my stuff on! So my deep conditioning session this week was about 2.5 hours. I then rinsed out, applied Roux Porosity Control for 2 minutes, then began to roll.

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My leave-ins this week were as normal: Alterna Caviar Photo Age Defense, Alterna Caviar Texture Cream, Carol’s Daughter Monoi Anti-Breakage Repair Spray and Carol’s Daughter Monoi Sacred Strengthening Serum. This week, I wanted a bit more curl so I decided to use the gray and purple rollers instead of gray and black! UGH!!! It took me longer to roll and honestly, it was weird using them all over my head again. It took me just under 2 hours to dry and even then, there were a few places of dampness that I zapped with the blow dryer. Overall, when I took my rollers out, I couldn’t tell if my hair was damp or just very soft (not good in my book). That brings me to my next observation: I need to assess the mixture of water I use to set my hair.

I use a combination of water, glycerin and essential oils but last week I added some Roux 619 and a few drops of my Alterna Caviar White Truffle Elixir. On top of the leave-ins, I think that was wayyyyyyyyyyy too many products to have in my hair, which may be contributing to my hair drying so slow and it ultimately feeling a bit too soft and lank for my liking. Also, at the first sign of water, my hair just puffs up. My hair (relaxed or natural) has an almost cottony feel and I can only imagine the reversion nightmare I would have if I were to go natural. I think I need to eliminate the glycerin, since it can attract moisture to the hair, which is not what I need in Oregon’s damp fall and winter. Next week, I am just going to use some very diluted Lotta Body and water. That may make my hair dry a bit faster and make the curls have a bit more staying power.

I combed my hair out, applied some serum and took a look at it. Meh. It looks OK! If my hair didn’t feel so soft and limp (despite me using smaller rollers), I would have just picked the curls apart and had some big hair! Instead, I wrapped it up for the evening and the proceeded to watch “John Adams” (one of my favorite mini-series)! I have also noticed something else about my hair that proceeds my HHJ days … I never liked my roller sets the day I got them done. I always felt a good sleeping on the curls did my hair wonders! Day 2 and 3 hair is way better than Day 1 when it comes to roller sets, IMHO. I think it’s because the oil has had time to spread and make hair a bit shinier! I don’t know!!

Anyhoo, I didn’t take pictures of the curls, but here is the final product. Slowly but surely trying to creep towards waist length! Look at the puffiness! I will come back and post some pictures when I take it down tomorrow! 🙂

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Why I Use Sulfate Shampoos Every Wash Day!

This post was inspired by Kim over at Fancy Flair Lady. About a month ago, she noted she was having problems with the feel of her hair and asked her readers about whether they used sulfate-free shampoos and I replied that each Wash Day, I use both sulfate and sulfate-free and here’s why … 

I am deathly afraid of having buildup on my fine strands and much-needed moisture being blocked. Some of my conditioners and leave-ins have small amounts of silicone in them, so I want to make sure they are removed. I have seen the devastation that inadequate removal of silicones can cause. I also do a pre-poo every Wash Day, so I feel that my hair is up to using sulfates.

For my first wash, I use a gentle sulfate shampoo such as Amla Legends Body Filler Hair Wash, which does not leave my hair feeling stripped, but removing any product that may be hard to remove with a sulfate-free shampoo. I then follow up with my sulfate-free Alterna Caviar Volume shampoo, which helps to replenish moisture. I then proceed to do an in-shower conditioning treatment.

I have been doing this for majority of my HHJ and have not had any problems with it! 🙂

Samurai Bun

It seems the longer my hair gets, the more floppy and sloppy my hair buns are … and not in a good way. My favorite buns were definitely BSL ones. Hair is long enough for the bun to be full, yet short enough where it was no needed to do a bunch of pinning and winding around, just so the bun stays in place.

I have been pretty fed up with the low and mid buns flopping around, so I thought I would do a top-knot, or samurai bun. Having to pull hair on the top of the head takes a bit of “length” out of the bun, making it stay a bit firmer and not need as much pinning.

Here’s how I did it:

1. Flip hair over and smooth hair downwards as you are leaning over.

2. Making sure the back of the head part of the hair is smooth, gather all hair at the crown of your head.

3. Wound ponytail holder around hair as much as needed for it to be firm. Pin stray pieces of hair, if desired.

Here’s how mine turned out … I definitely love it since it protects my hair from harsh cotton and wool clothing and accessories needed in the fall and winter.

HINT: You can moisturize and seal before doing placing hair in the bun. I M&S at night, so my hair is ready to be styled in the morning!

 

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Liebster Blog Award 2013

Awww … hi guys! It’s been awhile, hasn’t it?! I have come out of my hiatus to accept my Liebster Award from With Love, From Harlem and Diaries of Another Relaxed Chic! Thank you ladies for my first blogging award! 🙂

Ok, here goes:

11 Fun Facts About Me!

1. I am a history nerd. My favorite time periods to study are The American Civil War and World War II. I have probably seen close to every documentary ever made on the subjects!

2. My favorite food is pepperoni pizza.

3. I listen to hard rock (e.g. Metallica, Queens of the Stone Age) when I am working out … it gives me a good push!

4. My style icons are Michelle Obama and Duchess Catherine. I have been gradually adopting a more conservative type of dress! I recently just bought this Smythe blazer that Duchess Catherine had on a few weeks ago for my 30th birthday. Pricey … but worth it!

5. Cleaning up is a great stress reliever for me.

6. My sisters and I have attended each of the ACC schools in NC. I went to NC State, my older sister went to Duke and my youngest sister is at Wake Forest. My dad said his daughters learned their A-B-Cs … ANYBODY BUT CAROLINA!

7. I am a registered Independent!

8. The last book I read was “John Adams” by David McCullough and it was damn good!

9. My favorite liquor is Jose Cuervo tequila. I know, people tell me its cheap … and I have had expensive tequilas … but I just love Uncle Cuervo (as I call him!)

10. My ultimate goal in life is to travel to Australia and spend a few hours with a koala bear. I LOVE KOALAS!

11. I cannot sing a lick. I have a horrible voice. 🙂

Here are the questions With Love, From Harlem sent.

1.Why did you start blogging?

I was googling something about the line of demarcation in January 2012 and came across these relaxed hair blogs. It completely blew me away at all these ladies with long, beautiful, relaxed hair! It was like I found the answer on how to grow long hair.

2. What is the inspiration behind your blog’s name?

I don’t remember … I was just thinking about a catchy name, and Hair, There and Everywhere! came to me. I think someone else already had a blog with that name, but she was white so I didn’t think she would care! 😉

3. How do you balance your life while trying to maintain you blog?

It’s pretty easy! I blog when I can! Lately, I just haven’t had much to blog about! I do the same thing to my hair every week, so I don’t think people want to read about 4 similar Wash Days!

4. Who is your favorite blogger and why?

Funky Dineva. S/he is one of the funniest people I have ever seen on a v/blog

5. What is it that separates your blog from others?

It’s mine! HAHAHAH! Also, I don’t see too many people blogging about Alterna hair care products

6. What is the best thing about blogging?

Charting my progress and going back to look on how far I have come!

  • 7. How do you choose the topics you post on your blog?
  • Whatever pops into my head!

8. What is the most important thing that you’ve learned on your hair journey?

Protective styling is key!

9. How long have you been on your hair journey?

Almost 2 years … since January 9th, 2012.

10. What does it feel like when one of your readers say that your blog has helped them?

Amazing … it feels like I am paying it forward to all the ladies who helped me get where I am!

11. Name one(and only one) product that you cannot live without.

Alterna Caviar White Truffle Elixir (I use this as my daily moisturizer)

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🙂