Monday, February 11, 2013

I've been waiting so seems! But it's here!

Hi there everybody and I trust that all are having a good Monday so far. In general mine could be better, I'm all snotty and congested since the weekend and I need it to be done now!

On the hair side of things, this weekend I use my singular heat pass to be able to do a decent and official length check and I am officially claiming shoulder length! It's been a few days over a year since I started my journey at busted, broken, just simply SAD looking ear/neck length hair, and I was stuck at neck length for quite a while, even when the rest of my layers caught up and grew past my ears. But I pressed onwards and results are clear as day and I am as happy as a pig in mud!

On Saturday I did my mini wash day routine - incorporating some new tips that I've picked up:

  • Detangled my hair prior to jumping in the shower, which was a breeze as my hair is freshly relaxed.
  • Thoroughly rinsed my hair for about 3-5 minutes before applying shampoo
  • Shampooed with ORS Creamy Aloe Shampoo. Rinsed thoroughly
  • Instant conditioned with Protein Feed Moisturizing Conditioner, which I kept on for about 2-3 minutes. Rinsed thoroughly
  • Applied my all time favorite ORS Replenishing Conditioner, which I kept on for about 10 minutes whilst completing the rest of my shower duties. I've been feeling sick already and didn't want to sit with soaking wet head of hair for longer than strictly necessary. 
  • After thoroughly rinsing all traces of conditioner I wrapped my hair in a t-shirt to soak up the excess water. 
  • Applied my only leave in at the moment, Bone Straight, and then detangled my hair. Jeni from Just Grow Already has a point - detangling damp hair instead of wet hair leads to MUCH less breakage and shedding. 
  • I then got my trusty water and conditioner spritz mix and started roller setting, which was also a breeze. 
  • Air dried my hair whilst in the rollers whilst watching Gossip Girl. (I am ADDICTED!)
  • Removed the rollers, applied a little bit of ORS Moisturizing Lotion to act as a heat protectant and proceeded to flat iron my hair using my Toni & Guy Ceramic Iron at 200 degrees Celsius (390 Fahrenheit) and only passing the iron over every section of hair once and swiftly. 
I loved the way my hair felt afterwards - strong but smooth and straight. I experienced no breakage during roller setting nor the straightening process, and of course I loved the SWANG, lol. 

Okay, but enough talk. Here's where I started one year ago:

05 February 2012

And THIS is where I am now:

09 February 2013

09 February 2013


And on to my next goal - I would love to say that I'm going to immediately start chasing APL, but I'm going to take this day by day. It may be slightly slow progress, but it's PROGRESS. Thus my next goal where my hair is concerned is for my hair to cover my tattoo on my back. (That's about 2 inches, so I'm giving myself around 4-5 months to get there) THEN I'll start focusing on APL.

That is it for now everybody. First goal achieved, nr two - here I come!!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Touch up at 11 weeks post, and a review

At 11 weeks post I was technically a week early with my touch up, but since hair does grow a bit faster during the summer months (and here in Namibia, we are having a very hot and sunny summer) my new growth was getting a tad hard to manage. No, scrap that, it was becoming out of control! No matter how gentle I was, no matter how much I moisturized and sealed my new growth, no mater how diligently I deep conditioned, I was experiencing demarcation line breakage. I've come to the conclusion that my hair is not really a fan of the Namibian summer. In any event, here I was, with THICK new growth and I simply couldn't take it anymore. So on Friday I bought a Motions kit and on Sunday me and one of my besties tackled my tresses.

Usually I would have grabbed the ORS Olive Oil No Lye for Girls kit, but since I've started my journey I thought it might be a good idea to try a few different relaxer systems and see which ones my hair and scalp agree with most.  And the Motions kit was on SALE, and my broke bum thought - yes, it is YOUR turn. 
When I opened the box, I felt encouraged. A pre-treatment included as well as a conditioning mask and a leave in conditioner. I felt confident that my hair would be as sleek and shiny as the chick on the box. Alas, it was not meant to be.  But let me not skim over my experience.

As we were watching Hell’s Kitchen I applied the pre-treatment to all my previously relaxed hair and based my scalp and hairline with Vaseline. I mixed up the relaxer and activator gel and the resultant consistency was very nice and smooth. It also has the most pleasant smell of any relaxer I've ever used. We started applying the relaxer creme at the crown, moving up, down and side ways so that the hair line and nape get processed last as they’re less resistant and finer than the rest of my head. We were working at a good pace, but within 10 minutes the back of my scalp started tingling, despite all the basing I did. 2 minutes after the tingling came the (quite intense) burn and I rushed to the bath and started rinsing. Luckily for me all my hair was processed to the desired degree. Unfortunately for Motions, just the fact that my scalp started burning so soon puts it on the “not again anytime soon”list.

I neutralized with the included shampoo, and hell’s bells, my back is STILL killing me, having had to be bent over the bath shampooing and rinsing about a hundred times before the foam looked white instead of pink. I followed this with the included conditioning mask, and decided to do a DC after I applied it to my hair, leaving it under a plastic cap in 100 degree summer heat for 45 minutes. When I rinsed it off I started to feel truly discouraged.  My hair did not feel smooth, nor conditioned, nor very soft. I started praying that the included leave in conditioner will deliver said results. AND…it did NOT.  My hair felt stiff, as if I put strong hold setting lotion on it. Detangling and roller setting was a nightmare. My ends felt like straw after I took out the rollers when my hair was finally dry (took about 3-4 hours air drying it in the rollers). I am so disappointed.  There was no additional shine as promised by the ad campaigns! The breakage was more, not less! And my hair does not feel more conditioned than when I use another system. It did not feel like silk!

I’m sorry Motions, but your relaxer kit gets a thumbs down from me, and believe me, I have tried PLENTY.  And unfortunately this experience had discouraged me from trying anything else from your line. Perhaps this system works for other ladies, but for me…I think I now have a pretty accurate idea of what works best for me, and it’s a kit for little girls.

The Greenhouse Effect

Hello there lovelies.

So, I did my relaxer touch up a 11 weeks post this past weekend. I used the Motions No Lye kit for the first time and I will say this - not any time soon again. I'll post a review on that soon. In any event, since my touch up, my ends have been feeling uber dry and raggedy, even though when I LOOK at them they seem fine. So I decided to try something that I have not done before, the greenhouse effect, or at least partially - I baggied my ends last night!! (Side note: I'm so happy that my ends are long enough to do that, i could jump for joy!)

Okay, so I moisturized my hair with my ORS Moisturizing Lotion diluted with water, sealed with a bit of olive oil, after which I pulled my ends into a pony. I covered the pony with a small sandwich baggy, tied it up with a ponytail holder and then proceeded to wrap the rest of my hair with a satin scarf. This morning - oh JOY! My ends felt SO soft and moisturized, to the point that either tonight or tomorrow night I am going to do the FULL greenhouse effect and baggy my entire head! This truly works! Because I'm in the Protective styling challenge, when I got up, I simply removed the ponytail holders and baggy and twisted my end up and put on an EZ comb - low manipulation and protective styling all in one!

I must say, that  am more and more appreciating the benefits of moisture with my hair. For the next couple of days I am going to focus on it in such a huge way, and not really care whether I look cute and then I'll see what the result is at my next wash day, when I plan to use my SINGLE heat pass as I want to do a length check. That check will hopefully be accompanied by some decent pics.

Until then, one more day to go then it's the weekend baby!! Have a good one everybody!

PS: So I did baggy my entire head, and my hair was closer to wet than damp, but it felt amazing!! I quickly set it with a few rollers and when they were dry pinned the sides and did half a French plait at the back, the end which I also pinned up. a very good hair day - moisture and protective styling for the win!

Monday, February 4, 2013

1st year anniversary coming up!

Tomorrow is the anniversary of my healthy hair journey, exactly one year since I started taking care of what grows out of my head and blogging about it. So far the journey has been rather remarkable. My hair is longer than I can remember it ever being in my adult life. I've gotten into an actual routine and regimen regarding my hair. I've had to learn new methods of roller setting due to the fact that I'm dealing with more hair than before. I've been educating myself on not just techniques on hair care and handling, but also on hair care products, the ingredients they contain and how some aid you in your journey and how others are detrimental to your goals, hopes and dreams (well...where your hair is concerned at least). 

I've come to realise that there are people that don't give a flying donkey. They don't really want to hear you blabber on about what you did on your last wash day and how you wanna try out a certain product. They however always notice the progress that you're making and they knock on your door when they need some hair advice of their own (which I'm always willing and able to dish out, lol). 

I've also learned that there will always be naysayers and haters, and they are the worst! The ones who discourage and demoralize you. I've learned that  have to shut those negative voices and negative energies OUT. I've learned that I can't allow myself to be discouraged from WHATEVER road I'm on, whatever journey, whatever goal I'm focusing on. 

And I've come to know some excellent cheerleaders, girls doing the same thing I am, ladies walking the same road. Some are WAY ahead of me, some are right next to me. But all know the heart break of a setback, of breakage, of a bad cut or a bad relaxer. All know the joys of an extra inch at the next length check, of added body and volume, of filled in edges and healthy napes. 

It's been a year, and so far, so good. I'll make a point of doing an official length check before the end of this week (which also means doing my ONE and only heat pass for Longing4Length's Protective Styling challenge) but I believe that I can actually claim that my hair has grown from ear length to shoulder within that time. 

This is to say a big thank you to everyone who has supported me so far,  which includes all my friends who have sat through ramblings about hair products, regimens and the latest news from the blogosphere, and of course also all the ladies who's blogs have inspired me so far this year. It's been one hell of a ride so far, with greater things to come. 

Have a great Monday everybody!!