Tag Archives: hair

Hairy Monday: The Ins and Outs of Essential Oils

Source: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/9-essential-oils-with-huge-health-benefits.html
Source: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/9-essential-oils-with-huge-health-benefits.html

So, if you’re like me, you want to know EXACTLY what you’re putting in your hair. I’ve ordered quite a bit of ingredients from Amazon¬†and I’ve been doing research as well. One of the main things that I’ve invested in is essential oils.

Essentials oils (often referred to as “EO”s on natural hair sites) can be attributed for everything from relaxing you to stimulating hair growth. As a matter of fact, I just made a “Growth OIl” using some essential and carrier oils (carrier oils are used to “float” essential oils. They dilute them since they are so concentrated.)

Now, instead of me repeating everything that I’ve read, I’ll just refer you to some of the pages that I found the most direct and helpful. They can be found here, here, and here.

So, I’m giving you a break today! No long posts…just straight info.

If you have any questions about essential oils or if you have a recipe you’d like to share, email me at staywoo.art@gmail.com or comment below!

Until next time…

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!

Protective Styling 101

ImageSo, I’ve decided to make Monday’s Hair day! If any of you already follow my blog, you already know that I’m usually all over the place. Designating a day for each of my interests will help me keep it organized (whatever that means!).

One of my hair goals for this year is to keep my hair in some sort of protective or low manipulation style for 90-95% of the year. In doing this, I thought it would be a great idea to open this up as a challenge to my YouTube subscribers and personal friends alike.

The point of protective styling or low manipulation styling is to keep the ends of your hair from being exposed to the harsh environment. This is usually done in the winter time since the air is dryer and colder but, the summer months can wreak havoc on your hair as well.

With this being said, I wanted to discuss the top five things I think every natural or transitioner should keep in mind while protecting their hair. These are in no particular order:

1. Moisturize! Although I’m not placing too much significance on any one thing, moisturizing is extremely important to anyone wearing their hair or transitioning their hair to its natural state. Wearing your hair in a protective style does not exempt you from this. It is very important that you take the time, as needed, to properly moisturize your hair. I personally like the L.O.C. (Liquid, Oil, Cream) technique and will do this on my twists/braids every other or every three days. Typically, I use water as my moisturizer, caster oil (winter) or jojoba oil (summer) as my oil, and Shea Moisture’s Curl Enhancing Smoothie as my go to cream.

2. Be creative! Most naturalists shy away from protective styling thinking that it will stifle their creativity. It is soooo the opposite! I love coming up with different updos or finding a cool and different twist or braiding method. It was my search for protective styles that led me to the infamous yarn wrap! (see video here!) You are only as limited as your imagination is! Check out different YouTube pages (CharyJay is one) and jump in there. Keep in mind though, as you are trying new things, your hair may be a different texture or a different length as who you are inspired by so your hair may not turn out EXACTLY like theirs. Embrace your own style and rock it!

3. Don’t ignore your ends! A lot of women think that protecting their hair means ignoring their hair. Oh, quite the contrary! Protecting your hair means just that, protecting it. However, part of protecting your hair involves you removing any damaged ends including single-stranded knots and split ends. If your hair is long (shoulder length and below) you can analyze your ends and see when they need to be clipped. Hair that is shorter will have to be looked at by someone else. I can tell when my hair needs to be clipped just by how the ends feel. If they feel like straw and you can feel SSKs in your hair, it’s time for a clipping. Make sure that you go to someone that you trust; someone that will honor your hair goals. I typically go for a trim once every four months.

4. What’s up with your scalp? Hey, your scalp needs love too! Usually, protective styles involve some sort of twists or braids. This provides a great opportunity to nourish and baby your scalp. This is where it all begins. If your scalp is not healthy, your hair won’t be either. If your a putting in a protective style for longer than two weeks, make sure that you are properly cleaning your scalp. I like to use witch hazel and a q-tip along my parts. Also, weekly scalp massages are a must. They promote blood circulation which can promote hair growth and hey…they feel great. They feel even better when you get someone special to do them…. o_0

5. You! Protective styling not only gives your hair a break from you, it gives you a break from it. Get out and do somethings you’ve always wanted to do but never could because you were stuck at home doing your hair. Catch up on some great books or better yet, some great sleep! One thing you need to make sure of is this: Take care of yourself. Eating healthy and exercising is not just good for your body, it’s good for your hair. Your hair is an extension of yourself.

I hope that helps! If you are interested in doing this challenge with me, email me at staywoo.art@gmail.com. I will send you some questions and you may be featured on next Monday’s blog!

Until then…

Face It!

Lil' LadySo, at this point we already know that one of my goals this year was to face my fears head on. One fear, in particular, has to do with my business. I am an earring designer which means, I personally create earrings and sell them. I design and/or paint each and every earring and then send them out to wherever.

I have been contemplating becoming a vendor at a local natural hair event and up until this point, it has been convenient to come up with excuses as to why I couldn’t go. It will take up the whole weekend. How many earrings should I bring? What if no one likes any of them? What if I sell out? What if…what if…what if…

Today, I received an email announcing a natural hair event that will be local and it will only be for one day. The coordinators are estimating approximately 5000 in attendance. Did I already tell you that I handmake EACH EARRING? You know what? I’m going! I’m going to do it.

Fear is a really big something from far away. As long as you don’t confront it, it’s this ominous thing that lurks around every corner, daring you to move it’s way. It’s only when you confront your fear that you realize just how small it really is. Have you ever looked back on something you did and thought, “Awww, that wasn’t too bad.” Exactly.

What the worse that can happen? I sell out of all my product before the end of the day. And really, how bad can that be? That means two things: 1) People actually like it enough to buy it and 2) I made some money. Which is the whole point right? Well, I’m an artist so just creating would be enough for me…kinda.

It’s obvious that I have a little planning to do. And this event is in two months. Wish me luck and start looking for your opportunity to face your fears. You can do it. Just face it!