Sunday, August 30, 2009

Product Junkie Review: Bentonite Clay

Since becoming natural in June 2007, I have become a product junkie. I am not ashamed. You have to try products to see what works. I have since tried to make better choices. I try to avoid sodium laurel sulfates, mineral oil and alcohol when I can. I enjoy natural products when I can find them. Here is my review of Aztec Secret's Indian Healing Bentonite Clay.

I have been using Bentonite Clay for over a year. I use it for both a hair and facial mask. To mix, I often use a 50/50 mix of water and apple cider vinegar (ACV). You can really "feel your face pulsate"!!!

From the label:


Facials, acne, bodywraps, clay baths, foot soaks, chilled clay for knee packs and insect bites! Enjoy the benefits of clay in your own home. Beautify & Refresh.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Getting The Good Stuff: Mississipi Water

I love watching videos on YouTube. Saturday I watched a video by familygoingnatural from New Orleans (her whole family are natural hair wearers) and she talked about how good Mississippi water was to her hair. She is absolutely correct. When I first moved to Tennessee, my hair acted a plum fool when I washed it and I was permed! It was only after I went home again that I realized how soft the water at home is. The water has bubbles in even before you add any product and you only need a little shampoo to get a good lather going.

I decided to make a video response to her video of my recycling a Coca Cola bottle to get a little water. Since I was in the country, I decided to get it straight out the outside hydrant! Fun Fun Fun! I had water splashing all over me. I will use the water in my apple cider vinegar (ACV) mixes and any other mixtress mix that I concoct. I only brought back that 20 ounce bottle so it will have to be small batches!

ACV Rinse

  • 50/50 ACV & Water to be used as a final rinse for scalp and hair. I like to use warm water. This is a natural hair and scalp clarifyer.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Moody Hair: I've Named Her Sheree

Why is my hair so moody? When I wake up in the morning to style my hair, it is all "blah". As the day goes by, she (I'm naming her Sheree) starts to look great! By the time I get home and take it down, the hair style is fierce! But I'm not going anyplace! I've tried wearing a puff at night and unleashing in the morning in attempt to get a fierce Afro in the morning but Sheree is too slick for that and does NOT cooperate. Even when I twist at night, I can wear a chunky fro but again, Sheree does not wake up and be fierce until later.

I've also noticed that when I put product in my hair, such my Miss Jessie's Baby Buttercreme, it is nothing special instantly but as the day goes by, my hair is really pretty and looks moisturized. I've tried to be sure to "emulsify" the product when I apply it to warm it up but I get the same results: Fabulous hair late in the day! Or on a Saturday morning! Does anyone else have moody hair?

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Always Organic

I make no bones about being a country girl from Mississippi. Though as a kid, I longed for the flash of the city. I wanted to vanish from the place where the sun leaned on you no matter where you went under the shade tree. I wanted to throw my hands up anytime my beloved Big Mama planted her vegetable garden on Good Fridays and say that it would matter. Fast forward 35 years and I finally get it!

What my Big Mama and Big Daddy did back then is all the rage right now: Organic! Say what?! Organic? We were always Organic but it was called living in the country! Now while I refused to drink milk from a cow that walked around the pasture, fresh tomatoes, greens, peas, butter beans and field corn were always available. My grandparents farmed, fished & harvested by the moon. At the beginning of each year, they always bought the Farmer's Almanac and The Lady's Birthday Almanac. In there, the moon phases determined the best time to plant crops and even when to trim your hair for growth. To this day, I still use the moon as a guide. Give it a try and see if you notice a difference!


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Sunday, August 2, 2009

To Tuck or Not To Tuck: That Was The Question

Ok, I've twisted my hair for the night and I didn't know whether to tuck my ends or not. I've seen Lisa Akbari and her method on YouTube for the curly afro.

After viewing her results video again, that helped me to make the decision to tuck the ends. She pretty much summed up exactly what I was wondering about.

I have not been to a professional hair salon in over a year. Even then, it was a "shape up" of my afro by a natural lady at Walmart! Yes, Walmart. Initially, I was not happy because I thought that she cut too much off. But in the end, it was a beautiful shape. I probably need a trim but I am afraid to trust just anybody in my locks. Some people can get scissor happy and I might need some bail money from y'all!

Taking notes from back when I was permed, the stylist styled my hair. I may have gone in for a wash and set but it was really the styling part that was essential to the process. I get that now and will apply that to my own natural hair. I guess I was caught up in the fact that yes I'm natural and my doesn't require chemicals, it still has to be styled. My style of choice has been the puff but again, as my hair has grown, it needs more styling versatility. I think the appearance of the lack of styling is what puts some people off about natural hair. They think that you cut off your relaxed hair to wear a big ole kinky matted afro. Hey, if that's your preference, Rock On! I love all the options that natural hair brings. There are days when I miss that big ole Maxwell-Sexy-Kinky. . .oh, I'm getting off the subject. Sorry. I got caught up. I just heard Pretty Wings and wanted to fly away!

I will tuck my ends and hopefully make a new YouTube video of my results.

Stay Tuned!


Saturday, August 1, 2009

I'm 40 and Nappylicious!

I turned 40 today! The Calvary did not show up. Nor the band of gypsies to cart me away. It was a rather peaceful and quiet day. With the way life is now, I am excited to have reached 40. Every year after this will be celebratory. I am grateful. Grateful to be alive to still have an opportunity to pursue my passion: writing and creating.

Oh yeah, this is s'posed to be about hair! Well, I DC'd my hair overnight with Taliah Waajid's conditioner. When I rinsed it out, my hair was so soft and spiral-y. I just did a wash n go since I was thinking about twisting later.

My hair is just like a child. I've realized that it has to be trained. Back in the day when my aunt Laura used to wear that Farrah Fawcett bouncy hair, she was wearing a press and curl. When she went to the beauty shop, the man would use the Marcel barrel irons on it and curl it in the same pattern every time. He would not comb the curls out and it would be tight. But in a few days, her hair would be bouncy and Farrah-like. She would roll her hair in the same pattern every night and do that thing where you comb your hair all to the back with a wide tooth comb and push up! One would think that she was combing all the curls out but she wouldn't! I have to find a pix to post it later.

When she finally relaxed her hair, it was just a straight and stringy mess! Who knew it would turn out like that since her hair always looked so full and voluminous. We have the same kind of hair.

I've realized that I cannot regularly wear a wash and go because my ends will be a HAM! All tangled up. I have to comb my hair out to the ends. I am guess that it's because I have fine hair and strands must wrap around each other. My hair shrinks like nobody's business.

Weird but back when I was permed, my hair accepted the oil/grease products better than the creams. Even now, some creams like Miss Jessie's just "sits" on my hair unless I emulsify first! New word. Emulsify = rub the product in my hands first to warm it up. I have had much better hair results using this technique. And for my fine hair, I've learned the hard way NOT to be heavy handed because it doesn't take that much product.

Something else that I have discovered. If I don't detangle my hair, I will not be a happy camper when it is dry. It is best when my hair is wet or still damp. After that, forget about it!

Last week, I was a total hair bum and just did a wash and go. While my hair was cute in those puffs and was big and fluffy when dry, on wash day, I had a tangled bird's nest on my head. I wanted to cut it off. No lie. Luckily, I could only find my dressmaker shears and not my hair shears. I took my time and used lots and lots of conditioner and finally got the tangles out. I had to break out the big guns. I used a combo of Taliah Waajid's conditioner that gives me great slip AND KCCC's Knot Today. I thought I wasn't going to make it but I finally got the tangles out and surprisingly, still had some hair on my head. Whew!

In the next few days, I will be checking on my new hair revelations and report the progress. I will continue to sleep on my satin pillow case. This is about the most consistent thing I do every night. I will also twist my hair. Though I'm sleeping on satin and don't tie my hair up every night, I think my hair still has to be in some kind of "training" pattern in order to look styled. When my hair was shorter, I could get away with just sleeping on the satin pillowcase but now that it is growing longer, I need to protect the ends from tangles.

Styling has been my biggest downfall since being natural. I can co-wash and deep condition and henna my hair and all the good stuff. But when it comes to styling, I fall flat. I never learned to braid but I'm learning. My parts always look jacked up. I get frustrated and end up with a puff. A cute puff but still just a puff. Hmmm. . . I really think that nightly twists will help me in that department.

I do not proclaim to be an expert. I'm still learning my hair and how to care for it in it's natural state.
Stay Tuned!


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