April 26, 2011

Recap Video 6th Annual DC Love, Locs and Natural Hair Expo

Hey Everyone,

I will be updating soon with pics of my TWA - I am actually managing to 'leave it alone' and wear my styles longer than a few days :o)

In the meanwhile, check out these videos of The 6th Annual DC Love, Locs and Natural Hair Expo I had the opportunity to attend and vend at :o)

The first one was done by me - you may have to pause it to read the text - I haven't got the hang of slowing down the slides yet.

And the second one is the hair show put on by Baltimore's Infinity Naturals at the expo. Enjoy :o)

My Video - see if you can spot my shampoo bar table :o)

Infinity Naturals Hair Show

Peace and Blessings...

April 08, 2011

Fresh Start - Big Chop Again!

First off, I have to give a shout-out to Dawn of Nappturalite Radio for commenting on my new Facebook profile pic with "Fresh Start" :o) She inspired me with the title of this post.

Well, like the title also says I did ANOTHER big chop :o)

Over the past few months I have been noticing so many people doing big chops either for the first time or just doing it again, and the scissors were calling me name- lol. I had been thinking about cutting my hair even all around for a while, and after doing a trim I really noticed that the front was longer than the back, and the middle was way shorter than them both.

And I know that hair grows unevenly, but I noticed that the middle seemed like it wasn't growing as fast as the front and back - breaking off when it reached a certain point. When I wore two-strand twists I always had holes - scalp showing in the back- due to the middle being shorter, which would make me gravitate to putting it up in a bun.

I had big plans to start doing scalp massages and becoming more diligent about taking hair vitamins. I also decided to stop wearing so many ponytails/buns, which was most likely the main reason why the middle was breaking off. While wearing ponytails/buns I really didn't care for the middle of my hair as much as the front and back, and I'm sure it being secured with bands 90% of the time wasn't helping.

But, for some reason I just couldn't stop wearing the ponytails/buns. I even tried wearing lower ones versus wearing them in the middle of my head where the shorter hair was. That didn't last long because the hair in the middle wasn't long enough to fit in the low ponytail/bun and I ended up trying to stretch it to make it fit - again putting more stress on already fragile hair.

So this also helped with my decision to do another big chop - now it's about 2 inches or so all over and cant fit into a ponytail or bun - so my ponytail/bun problem is solved :o)

My New Goals

This time around I plan to as Dawn commented "Start Fresh" and concentrate on overall healthy hair while growing it out. Now that I have a TWA I find myself constantly rubbing my scalp, so scalp massages shouldn't be a problem. Also, I plan on 'actually' taking those hair vitamins on a regular basis.

I also plan on continuing with the basics - moisturizing with water, followed by an oil or pomade to seal in the moisture, washing and conditioning - deep conditioning with henna once a month. And as my hair grows out I plan on experimenting with TWA styles. By the time it grows out hopefully I will be used to wearing it 'out' more and have those ponytails/buns out of my system (well at least wont be wearing them all the time).

And of course, I will document it all here :o) My new grow-out journey!

This is only the second week, but so far I have worn puffs, tiny box braids that I turned into a braid-out, cornrows that I turned into a braid-out, a Bantu knot-out and twists/twist-out. I got carried away with styling since it doesn't take as long to do :o) I think I will give my hair a break next week and get back on a routine of styling it once every week or two.

So stay tuned ... in the meanwhile check out my big chop video. Peace and Blessings...

April 04, 2011

Actual Science Behind Some Notorious Ingredients

Here is some great info from one of my favorite bloggers Jc of The Natural Hair Haven.

This UK blogger, is actually a ‘real-life’ Scientist. Dr. Ruby Majani aka Jc of The Natural Hair Haven - Science and Natural Hair blog, has a BSc and PhD in Material Science.

On her blog Jc states that she is not pro-natural nor anti-natural. "I think we can benefit from both natural and synthetic products," she says.

Jc compiled the following list of the top 5 most talked about ingredients and the science behind them.

Mineral Oil

Word on the Street: It comes from petroleum. It blocks out moisture from the hair causing it to dry out. It is used as a cheap filler in products.

Science: It is from fossil fuel and therefore considered natural in origin. All oils (including coconut, castor or mineral oil) form a barrier on the hair delaying water entry or exit to the hair. No oil can fully prevent water entry or exit.

Mineral oil is colorless and odorless therefore is able to be combined easily in products, given the widespread use of fossil fuels it is also one of the easiest to source consistently.

Best use: Mineral oil is useful when hair needs to be kept dry. For example, for straight styling or styling in high humidity.

Cautions: Mineral oil forms one of the best barriers as far as oils go therefore if hair is damaged or prone to being dry then should be used sparingly.


Word on the street: Silicone builds up on hair and blocks out moisture. It is artificial.

Science: Silicone is a lab created product. It is also an oil and therefore is also supposed to form a barrier. Silicone oil does not spread as easily as other oils therefore does not form the best barrier.

It is one of the best conditioning ingredients in shampoo helping to reduce hair damage when washing. In conditioners it creates slip allowing easy combing of hair especially wet combing.

Best use: Silicones are useful in shampoos and conditioners as they mitigate hair damage. They are also useful in heat styling as they offer some thermal protection to hair.

Cautions: Some silicones are water soluble while others are not. Non-water soluble silicones can accumulate on hair if a no poo (no shampoo) routine is used.

Sulfates (or SLS)

Word on the street: Sulfate containing shampoos are harsh, strip hair of natural oils and dry out hair.

Science: The purpose of shampoo is to strip oil. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate or SLS is a common surfactant in hair products and is one of if not the most effective cleanser. It can be very irritating to skin on its own but it is often mixed with less harsh cleansers such as SLES or ALES.

Best use: Clarifying hair, excellent for getting rid of build up.
Cautions: Some shampoos with SLS are likely to irritate skin (meaning dryness, itchiness and redness).

Equally some shampoos without SLS can also provoke a similar reaction. Ideally if a shampoo irritates, switch to something different.


Word on the street: Parabens cause cancer and mimic human hormones (estrogen).

Science: Parabens are preservatives used in cosmetics to prevent bacterial and fungal growth. Parabens do have a similar structure to estrogen but are not known to cause cancer.

They were found in breast cancer tissue but are also thought to be present in undiseased tissue as they can travel through the skin. In terms of mimicking hormones, parabens present a significantly low risk compared to hormonal contraception.

Best Use: An unpreserved hair product is a serious potential health risk. Parabens are not the only available preservative, but always pick a product with some type of preservative.


Word on the street: Glycerin dries hair out especially in winter. It can draw moisture from hair.

Science: Glycerin is a humectant meaning it binds to water and holds onto it. It therefore is a moisturizing ingredient.

It is also known to strengthen natural hair (unfortunately not so for relaxed hair). It is usually mixed with water prior to use and therefore in theory should not draw water from hair.

Best Use: One natural hair company (Oyin) suggests applying glycerin containing products on hair prior to a bath and shower. The steam could provide glycerin with additional water.

Cautions: Not everyone likes glycerin as a humectant. Some have more success with aloe vera or honey.

Now that you have the science behind the above ingredients you can now make your own informed decision on when/if to use them.

Remember, it’s best to ‘know’ your hair - what it strives on and what it dislikes. What works for some may not work at all for you :o)

Peace and Blessings...