Category Archives: A bit hairy

365 Grateful: Day 70

Man… today was eventful. I’m grateful that I got to do some things for myself.

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A little shopping…

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Some yoga…

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And this henna tattoo… even though I think it looks like a penis. Hey, I’m just saying.

I’m also grateful for life because right before my yoga class, there was a terrible accident that came a couple feet from my car.

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I’m standing right by my car here.

The car pictured flipped in the air and came down on the driver’s side. The other car involved did a 180 and hit a tree. Two people were involved. One is okay the other I assumed went to the hospital. Please pray for him.

Almost two hours later, they are still trying to get this car out of the ditch.

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I just pray the other guy is ok.

My FEARLESS Journey: Here

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So, this year, I’ve decided to do those things I’ve never done. To venture into what is, for me, unchartered territory. I’ll be posting pics and tid bits of those things throughout the year. One of the first things that I’m going to do is expose myself.

Some of you may be thinking that may not be a hard thing to do. Well, for me, it’s a challenge.

I used to write poetry…seriously. I would wake up in the morning and see words scrolling across my mind or I’d be sitting somewhere and hear someone say something and it would trigger an entire poem.

In 2004, I went through a divorce and by the next year, I was in the hallway of my apartment, wanting to take my life. The next day, I woke up and wrote a poem named “Water Under the Bridge”. My recitation of that poem eventually won me a scholarship back to school. I finished up my Bachelor’s degree and began teaching. From my deepest pain came a beautiful turnaround that changed the course of my entire life.

Why am I telling you all of this? When I started writing this post, I had no idea what I was going to say. This is kind of spilling out as I type. So, I believe I’m writing this to encourage someone.

God has been challenging me the past couple of months to change my perspective. Of all the things I’ve tried to do across the course of my life, this has been the hardest. I’ve failed royally along the way but, I’m thankful that God is determined to get me there.

Here is a poem I wrote the other day. I was frustrated with how I felt about where I am in life.

Here

I’m here.
I’m here waiting for something to change.
I’m here waiting for something to change and I see nothing.
Fear creeps up inside of me…reminding me of how familiar this feels.
Emptiness. Void. A hole big enough for you, God, but I’m scared you won’t fill it.
I try to give you my issues, this situation, but, I’m scared you won’t fix it.
I want to step back and allow you to move but, I’m scared you won’t move it…
Or me.
Scared that I’ll wake up tomorrow and I’ll be right here…right where you left me.
Right in the middle of this pain.
The pain that has me debilitated, bound, crippled even.

I try to fake it.
I try to fake it and cover up.
I try to fake it and cover up how I really feel because if I show you what I’m really going through, it makes me vulnerable to you.
I can’t take another person knowing how wounded I am.
I can’t trust another person pouring salt into those wounds.
I can’t deal with another person not realizing what an amazing, outstanding, genuine person I am and taking that for granted.
God be a fence, a wall, or a wrecking ball ’cause I need something to fix this.
So, in the meantime, I’m here.
I’m here waiting for something to change.

Until next time…

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Above photo credit: https://missionyear.org/missionyear/be-fearless/

Tutorial Tuesday: Still Protecting!

Screen Shot 2013-02-24 at 6.41.19 PMSo, I’m still protecting my hair and I have some curlies doing this challenge with me. There have been days when I’ve been so irritated with trying to come up with a style that is not only cute and protective but one that will last all week.

Here is a style that I came up with using the Havana Hair that I purchased a couple months ago. It was purchased from FIngerComber. If you are interested in purchasing, use coupon code: GRANOLAHEADS2010 to get a shipping upgrade!

Without further ado, here is the tutorial. Again, no long post today! See you tomorrow!

If you are interested in joining the protective style challenge, email me at staywoo.art@gmail.com.

Until next time…

Hairy Monday: Protective Style Challenger #3: Pearlette

Source: http://www.timeretrievers.com.au/business/thank-god-its-monday/
Source: http://www.timeretrievers.com.au/business/thank-god-its-monday/

So, I know. It’s been two weeks since my last blog. I will explain later on in the week what happened. Today, I’m really excited to present yet another protective style challenge participant! Here is her Q&A. Without further ado…

StayWoo: What is your name? (real, online, or otherwise)  

Pearlette

StayWoo: Describe yourself in three words. 

Bubbly, kind, energetic

StayWoo: What are your favorite products? 

Qhemet Biologics Amla & Olive Heavy Cream, Trader Joes Nourish Spa, Curly Kinks Gel, Giovanni Direct Leave-In Conditioner

StayWoo: What made you decide to go natural? 

My hair was breaking off and needed a break.  I had a bald spot in my crown which is now fully grown in.

StayWoo: What is your current regiment? 

Co-wash once a week, deep condition every two weeks. Detangle and style.

StayWoo: What are your goals with this protective style challenge? (length, healthier hair, etc) 

Twist OutBasically I’m looking for length and healthier hair.  I have never been so excited about my hair than I am now.

StayWoo: Do you have any favorite or go to protective styles? 

Twists, flat twists and currently thinking of doing some crochet braids, but that is still up in the air.

StayWoo: Who are your favorite YouTube vloggers for protective style inspirations? 

Mahogany Knots, AfrikanHairgod, CharyJay, BlakIzBeautyful, 101LadyT, 20pearlsncurls, simplyounique just to name a few.

StayWoo: Do you have a YouTube page, website, or blog? 

My youtube name is luv2bnatural12. (FOLLOW HER!!!)

StayWoo: Is there anything else you would like us to know? 

I recently celebrated my one year of being natural and am so happy.  I feel being natural is liberating and you have the best of both worlds. To top it off I get more compliments on my hair in its natural state than I did when I had a relaxer…ijs!!!

Great job, Pearlette! And congrats to your one year anniversary! What an accomplishment!

If you would like to join our protective style challenge, email me at staywoo.art@gmail.com. Also, make sure you check out the shop (etsy.com/shop/staywoo) for 20% off of our featured item of the week!

Until next time…

Tutorial Tuesday: Henna DIY

Source: http://hennablogspot.com/common-mistakes-and-tips-henna-for-hair/
Source: http://hennablogspot.com/common-mistakes-and-tips-henna-for-hair/

So, the other day, I had a friend ask me about henna and the process of henna-ing. She got me thinking, although I’ve done a couple YouTube vids explaining the process, a lot of people still don’t know what’s up with henna. Hence, this blog. I will explain what henna is for you here and make sure you check out the video I posted last year to see how to do it.

First of all, let me explain what henna is. Henna is a flowering tree or shrub that grows primarily in Africa and some parts of Asia and Australia. The primary use of this plant is for the dye it produces. The real color of henna is a coppery-reddish-brown. There are other products that are marketed as henna but, if they aren’t the red-brown color, they aren’t 100% henna.

Source: http://www.mehandi.com/shop/hairhenna.html
Source: http://www.mehandi.com/shop/hairhenna.html

Henna has been used on the hair since the Bronze Age (that will date back B.C) so, this is not a new concept. I have just recently seen it on the natural hair scene. I learned about henna from my Mom before I even knew what YouTube was (before 2009…don’t judge).

Now, people use henna in their hair for different reasons. There are many benefits to henna. Obviously, it deposits color onto your hair. It also has anti fungal properties which is great for someone who has eczema, like me. Henna also has a compound within it (lawsone) that has an affinity for bonding with protein. So, it will bond to the protein in your hair. It will also bond with the protein that you add to your hair, hence making it stronger.

Before deciding to use henna, you need to be aware of some things:

  1. Henna will deposit itself inside the shaft of your hair. This means it will be extremely difficult to lift or remove the color later. It is certainly permanent. 
  2. Henna takes a long time to do. You need to have a couple hours blocked off to allow for the color to process. I usually leave mine in, with my heated conditioning cap, for about two hours. You can certainly leave it in for longer or shorter. It’s entirely up to you.
  3. Henna has a distinct smell. To me, it smells like raisins. And it smells like that UNTIL YOU WASH YOUR HAIR. LOL! I can usually smell it for about a week.
  4. Henna takes a couple days to cure. When you first do it, it will look slightly orangey (nothing embarrassing). After a couple of days, it will settle into its characteristic color.
  5. Henna stains any porous surface. That includes skin, clothes, tile, wood…make sure you remove any spills IMMEDIATELY.
  6. You should only use Body Art Quality (B.A.Q) henna. A lot of manufacturers will market a product as henna when it’s really a dye. Be careful! I purchase mine here!
  7. Pure henna will contain calcium oxalate. This is a fine, grainy substance that will feel like sand in your hair. It is very hard to rinse out. You can add a couple tablespoons of apple cider vinegar (ACV) to your mix to dissolve the calcium oxalate. Don’t add too much because it will make your hair hard.
  8. I add conditioner to my henna mix. It will not hinder the color at all. I do this to perform double duty. I strengthen my hair with the henna while moisturizing it with the conditioner.
  9. Rinsing henna out will take some time. I finally have my system down. Having a handheld
    Source: http://www.waterpik.com/shower-head/products/hand-held/powerspray/TRS-523-553
    Source: http://www.waterpik.com/shower-head/products/hand-held/powerspray/TRS-523-553

    shower head helps tremendously.

  10. Henna may loosen your curl pattern. I have seen this happen on other naturalistas as well as myself. This is one of the reasons why I won’t leave it in for longer than two hours. I haven’t seen much loosening since I started doing that.
  11. Henna is all natural. You can apply it everyday if you’d like. It’s unrealistic but, you can if you like.

Overall, I love henna. As a matter of fact, I’m due for an application now..O_o I have a major event coming up soon (which I am soooo going to blog about) so I’m trying to wait so that my color will be fresh! LOL!

Until next time…

If you have any questions about henna or its application, post them in the comment section. Also, if you are interested in joining our protective style challenge, email me at staywoo.art@gmail.com! You can be featured on our next “Hairy Monday” blog!

Hairy Monday: Protective Style Challenger #2: Tasha

washandgoHey guys!!! We’re back again with another amazing naturalista who has committed to this challenge. I’m excited to present Tasha to you. Enjoy getting to know her better!

StayWoo: What is your name? (real, online, or otherwise)

Tasha

StayWoo: Describe yourself in three words.

Silly, Creative and Inspiring

StayWoo: What are your favorite products?

I started off using Herbal Essence Hello Hydration and Totally Twisted shampoo and conditioner. I still use these products, however, with this challenge I have decided to try out some organic products. I will be using Terressentials Organic Hair Wash, Organic Mud Wash along with homemade gels, hot oil treatments and conditioners.

StayWoo: What made you decide to go natural?

I was inspired by 3 of my friends who are natural (Candi, Crystal and Chantae….funny allSnapshot_20130122_15 start with a “C”). I received some news healthwise and decided this was my chance to cut it off and go natural.

StayWoo: What is your current regiment?

I try to keep it simple. I co wash my hair once a week and wash it once a month. When I wash my hair, I use a homemade conditioner. (Naptural85 Homemade Hair Deep Conditioner) I wear my hair in mini twist more often now to protect my hair. I have the I need to touch my hair a lot syndrome. So, wearing my hair in protective styles are beneficial for my hair growth and to prevent damage.me6

StayWoo: What are your goals with this protective style challenge? (length, healthier hair, etc)

My goal with doing this challenge is to allow my hair to grow longer and to protect my ends better. I tend to do my hair with a different style every other day and I need to just allow my hair time to rest from me touching it so often. I want it to be healthy and without the damaged or spilt ends. I want to really be a natural when it comes to my hair so, I am aiming for more natural product usage. My daughter, mother and I are all naturals and we made a vow to take better care of our health and hair this year so, this challenge will be great for all of us.

StayWoo: Do you have any favorite or go to protective styles?

At the moment, my favorite style is minitwists. I have fallen in love with this style. I can do an updo, wear it down or in a ponytail. I can still wash my hair with this style so it last for about a month. I will retwist the front and sides if needed.

StayWoo: Who are your favorite YouTube vloggers for protective style inspirations?

I have been following Nikkimae2003 since she started. I had the opportunity to meet her in December of last year. I love how she promotes healthy hair. I also follow Naptural85. She has helped me learn more about making my homemade products. We have the same texture of hair and I have wear a lot of hairstyles.

Snapshot_20130118_8StayWoo: Do you have a YouTube page, website, or blog?

No, I do not have a youtube page. I want to create one in the future.

StayWoo: Is there anything else you would like them to know?

I am excited about this challenge. I hope that it will inspire others to protect their hair more and promote healthy hair along with ways you can style your hair.Snapshot_20130122_3

Great goals, Tasha! If you have any ideas or questions OR if you want to join the “Protective Style Challenge”, email me at staywoo.art@gmail.com. I’m looking forward to hearing from you!

Hairy Monday: How I Cut My Natural Hair

Source: http://thankgodimnatural.wordpress.com/category/hair/products/
Source: http://thankgodimnatural.wordpress.com/category/hair/products/

I’ve had so many people ask me about cutting curly, natural hair. To be honest with you, I’m not sure there is any sure fire way to cut curly hair. I’m sure if you ask Lorraine Massey, author of ” Curly Girl: The Handbook”, she would tell you to get a Deva Cut. If you ask your local stylist, she might tell you that you have to straighten it out or at least blow dry it to get a thorough cut. For me, the option is not quite as simple.

I have had many experiences with cutting my natural hair. I’ve tried “dusting” my ends. I’ve tried cutting the bottom of my twists off. I’ve had my hair straightened to get it cut and I’ve gotten a Deva Cut. I’ve had my curls clipped wet and the last time my ends were clipped, my hair was dry and curly with no product on it. So, which one is the best you ask? Well, before I answer that question, let me explain what each routine entails.

Screen Shot 2013-01-20 at 9.06.02 AMWhen I first went natural seven years ago, I wore my hair very short, curly and blonde. Once I decided to grow my hair back out, I began putting heat on it and applied heat to it every week. My hair suffered from serious heat damage but, I had my hair cut while it was straight. The reason for this is because I wore it straight almost 100% of the time. That routine would not work for me now because I hardly ever straighten my hair.

“Dusting” is simply cutting off less than 1/4″ of hair. The amount of hair that you are cutting is so little that when you look at the clippings they look like dust. I didn’t really care for this method because it took too long and I still felt single stranded knots (SSK) and split ends when I was done.

When I got my last big chop, the beautician cut my curls with my hair wet. This method Screen Shot 2013-01-20 at 8.12.33 PMwas just okay to me because when I got home and washed my hair, I could feel the unevenness. You couldn’t tell by looking at it but, I knew that it was uneven.

My Deva Cut experience was a little weird. I’m not sure if I expected the stylist to have curly hair, the salon to have at least one curly haired client, or if I felt weird because the stylist said that she had never cut someone’s hair as curly as mine. Keep in mind that I’m a 3a-3c texture so, you can put two and two together. I was satisfied with the end result. It wasn’t long before I felt SSK and split ends again and for the 85$ that I paid, I expected more.

My last hair cut was in December and my stylist cut my hair dry and curly with no product on it. To be honest, I’m more satisfied with this cut than any other one. Cutting my hair dry allows the stylist to see my hair in its true form, how it lays, and how much shrinkage I’m dealing with. Like most people, different areas of my head shrink more than others. To top it off, the haircut was VERY reasonable.

So, what is the best method for cutting hair? Well, I think that’s for you to decide. You want to make sure, though, that you know what you hair goals are and that you relay them to your stylist. If your stylist can not honor those goals, keep it moving. If you’re like me, your main goal is to have healthy, long, natural hair. Your job, then, is to find a method that will support that.

What hair cutting methods work for you? Let me know!

Until next time…

If you are interested in joining the “Protective Style Challenge”, email me at staywoo.art@gmail.com. TTYL!