My current hair regimen

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It’s been awhile since I’ve posted my hair regimen. Since it’s changed slightly, I figured it would be a good time to share.

I’ve worked hard the past year on rehabbing my hair and getting it healthy. I made the decision to start using all natural products. I also wanted to stop using rinse out conditioners as leave ins and find actual leave in conditioners. I got lucky and found some that I’m pleased with.

Wash days are no longer an all day affair. I typically can get it done within 2.5 hours. My hair regimen is as follows:

My go to products:
Leave in: Kinky Curly Knot Today – this has proven to be worth the $12 price tag. It keeps my hair adequately moisturized; it’s lightweight and doesn’t weigh my hair down.

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Shea Moisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl & Style Milk – a decent moisturizer. I alternate it with my KKKT to stretch the products.

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I use one of these daily.

Sealer: Olive Oil or Grape seed oil – both of these oils absorb into my hair well and doesn’t sit on top of it.

Styler: ORS Twist & Lock Gel – used when I twist my hair. This gel doesn’t leave my hair hard and stiff like EcoStyler does at times.

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Co Wash – Trader Joe’s Nourish Spa & Trader Joe’s Tea Tree Tingle – both of these are reasonably priced and provides enough slip for me to detangle if I need to. When I first started my hair journey, I co-washed about 4-5 days a week. Now, I normally do it about twice a week. When I’m not trying to keep my hair stretched, I also might apply one of these when I shower, just for extra moisturizing benefits since my hair dries out easily.

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Pre-Poo: Extra Virgin Coconut Oil – I don’t always pre-poo, but when I do, I use coconut oil. I might pre-poo anywhere from 30 minutes to overnight. There’s no reason why I choose the amount of time. It just depends on my mood at the time.

Shampoo: Shampoo bars – I fell in love with these last summer and have been using them since then. I try to wash weekly.

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Deep conditioner: Shea Moisture Tahitian Noni & Monoi Smooth & Repair Nourishing Masque – this deep conditioner has been working well for me. I mix it with honey, JBCO, and sometimes coconut milk if I need a bit of protein. I cover my hair with a thermal heat cap for about 30-45 minutes. I’m back to deep conditioning once a week, sometimes every two weeks at the latest because my hair seems to like it better. When I was deep conditioning less frequently, my hair would start to break. 

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Rinses: ACV & honey – I use these depending on what my hair needs.

Of course, I have other products that I use less often and I’m still in somewhat of a trial and error phase with a few. I will be posting updates about these products as I use them and can figure out how my hair likes them.

My hair is really growing!!!

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As I twisted my hair tonight, I was surprised and amazed at how much my hair had grown, the crown in particular.  The hair at the crown of my head, which was shorter than an inch at the time, was the sole reason that I BCed again last summer. This month marked a year. Although I was devastated that I had to start all over again, when I look at my hair now, I realize it was well worth it.

This was my hair at the crown this time last year.
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It may be hard to tell how short it actually was from this picture.

This is my hair after I cut it AGAIN…

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I actually liked my TWA once it was cut. Those coils in the bottom picture were giving life! Lol

Here is my hair now at the crown a year later.
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Unstretched…last look at those curls!
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Stretched hair…

I took excellent care of my hair this time around and it paid off! What a difference a year makes! This makes me ☺.

My hair today

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Baggying my hair yesterday definitely did my hair good. I unraveled my twists this morning and was happy to see shiny, well-defined curls. The grape seed oil that I used to seal my ends was absorbed well, leaving no greasy film. My curls, including my ends, are nice and smooth.  Operation Save My Ends is off to a good start! ☺

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My self imposed “ends” challenge

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So, I have challenged myself to take extra special care of my ends. It is a never ending battle trying to keep these bad boys moisturized. The issue with my ends is ultimately the reason why I BCed again last summer. I ain’t trying to go there again.

The past few days I’ve been using shea butter on my ends to see what effect it would have. My hair has been soft, but it has also been greasy. I hate touching my hair and getting that greasy film on my fingers. I also don’t want to leave grease stains behind on any place I might rest my head. Maybe I need to use less. I’m not giving up on it completely yet.

OK…so this evening I baggied my hair. I’d planned on doing the ends only but I had to do my whole head because my hair isn’t long enough for me to just cover the ends with the bag. But this time I made sure that my ends were slathered with conditioner. I left the baggy on for about 4 hours instead of overnight since I was doing a protein treatment because my ends have breaking really bad. If you’ve been following my blog from the beginning, you may recall the horrible experience I had the first time I used the baggy method – I did it overnight and woke up to mushy, soggy hair that started to shed a lot.

Well, this time I noticed a big difference. My ends were moisturized and my hair was soft, but not soggy as before. Lately, when I’ve applied my leave in, I’d have hair covering my hands as I raked through it. This time there was none! So I’m guessing the protein was definitely needed.

Tonight I’m trying Herbal Essences Naked Moisture Conditioner.

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This line is paraben free. The consistency is the same as Hello Hydration and about the same amount of slip. I didn’t have a problem detangling my hair (something I rarely do). It has a light, citrusy, minty scent. I like that fact that it has rosemary and peppermint oils in it. I sealed my ends with grape seed oil and let my hair air dry slightly before twisting. My twists were plump and juicy like I like them and my ends were nicely sealed and smooth. The jury is still out on whether my they will stay smooth and hydrated. I will update.

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Ends moisturized, smooth, and nicely sealed

My product review – Carol’s Daughter Hair Milk

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The one year membership that I purchased with Carol’s Daughter is about to expire so I decided to try the Hair Milk. I’ve read that hair milks are good moisturizers and I had pretty good results with the Shea Moisture. I wanted to try this one so I could compare the two.

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Carol's Daughter Hair Milk - 8 oz regular price $12; member price $10.80


Product Description

FOR CURLS, COILS, KINKS & WAVES.
Dry hair = frizzy curls! So, protect your hair from unwanted situations – breakage, thirst and unmanageability – with this fan-favorite leave-in moisturizer. It has all the goodies you know and love, like Shea Butter to intensely hydrate curls, coils, kinks, and waves, plus Soybean Oil to soften and strengthen it too. We’ve also added Agave Nectar to ensure that your hair keeps moisture locked in and is extra healthy. This rich cream quickly and easily absorbs into your hair, leaving it glossy, nourished, and frizz-free.

Ingredients
Water (Aqua), Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Cetearyl Alcohol, Glycerin, Fragrance (Parfum), Polysorbate 60, Agave Tequilana Stem Extract, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Ascorbic Acid, Beeswax, Pentaerythrityl Tetra-di-butly Hydroxyhydrocinnamate, Polysorbate 80, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Tocopherol, Triticum Vulgare (Wheat) Germ Oil, Xantham Gum, Methylisothiazolinone, Phenoxyethanol

Featured Ingredients
* Cocoa & Shea Butters intensely rehydrate your hair
* Soybean Oil leaves hair softer and stronger than before
* Agave Nectar keeps moisture locked in for better definition and frizz control.

How to use
After co-washing, apply a quarter-size amount into soaking-wet hair, working it in evenly with your fingers. Use your hands to gently squeeze out excess water or use a cotton T-shirt for best results. Add more as necessary and style as desired.

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This hair milk is more liquidy than it is thick. I thought the consistency would make it perfect for summer. The smell, however, I don’t care for. I guess I expected it to have a sweet scent like the other products that I’ve purchased, but it smells more like a sunscreen lotion… and it lingers.

The directions say to apply a quarter sized amount to soaking, wet hair, distribute it through the hair, and add more if necessary. Just because I know my hair, I knew from the start that a quarter sized amount would not be sufficient, but I used this as a starting point. I ended up using about 4 quarter sized amounts and then sealed my ends.

My initial thoughts about this hair milk once I applied it to my hair – I’m not impressed. It has absolutely NO SLIP which is the first thing I look for in a moisturizer/leave in. The second thing I look for is how it coats the strands of my hair. This product is lacking in that area as well. My hair almost feels stripped – like it feels after a shampoo and the hair is squeaky clean. So basically, it feels like it has no product in it. One of the last things I look for is how well my curls are defined and how they clump together. Disappointingly, I didn’t notice clumpage, but my curls were somewhat defined. They just didn’t have that spring factor that I like.
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I’m going to let it dry and I will update in the morning.

UPDATE 7/13/15
Soooo, I must say that I am pleasantly surprised with how soft and moisturized my hair feels this morning. My curls are still defined to the extent they were last night. The oil I used to seal my ends absorbed well, which I like. I do notice that the smell is still prevalent now. It’s not overbearing, but I just don’t care for it.

Overall, I think this hair milk did what it was claimed to do. I do have a few frizzy areas though. I don’t think this product will work well enough alone when styling my hair. I think some type of gel will be needed. I’m going to use this product more to get a better feel for it and to decide whether I will buy it again. I will write an updated post afterwards.

My hair today

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I’ve been hanging out at the pool quite a bit lately, which means that I’ve been washing my hair more frequently. And since I’m washing more, I’m having to make sure that my moisturizing routine is sufficient.

My hair is prone to dry ends, no matter what I do. Being that I’ve recently removed twists, along with the time I’ve been spending at the pool, I have made sure that my ends are my focal point.

My last wash was Wednesday. Here’s a quick rundown of what I did: I pre-pooed with EVOO and then washed with my shampoo bar with ACV rinse. Then I deep conditioned with Elasta QP Olive Oil & Mango Butter Intensive Treatment. I added honey, peppermint oil, and JBCO to it and saturated my hair.  I added heat for about 30-45 mins. I finished by using Kinky Kurly Knot Today for my leave in and sealed with EVOO. I flat twisted using ORS Lock and Twist. My whole wash was complete within 2 hours…no more half day wash days!

I’ve been keeping my hair stretched since then and using Shea Moisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl & Style Milk for moisture daily. I am really liking this as a moisturizer. Thursday I did a hot oil treatment using the baggy method, moisturized, sealed, and retwisted.

Last night, I moisturized and retwisted. I hadn’t been getting the desired results with my twist outs lately. The definition was lacking in areas. When I retwisted last night I decided to try flat twisting the sides and back and two strand twisting the crown. I found that I got better results.

Overall, after all of the attention I’ve given my hair, I think it has paid off. My hair is soft, has plenty of volume, and the sheen is awesome. 

So, without further ado, here’s my hair today…
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My conundrum…

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…with my ends. So I have areas of my hair where the ends look like this.

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I cut these last night because I wasn’t sure if they were split ends or not. After cutting, I pulled them apart and stretched them out. The ends were not split…

So, I’m confused. No matter what I do, this is what my ends look like in these areas. Some areas it’s not noticeable unless I stretch them out. Other areas it’s not noticeable until I separate my twists.

Can anybody explain this to me? I BCed AGAIN a year ago because of this, thinking it was dry, damaged ends. Is this the case? If so, I’m not sure what else I can do to prevent it, as y’all know, I already pamper my hair obsessively. HELP!

My hair is free

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So after spending the last three hours removing kinky twists, my hair is free! I missed it! It has grown quite a bit over the past two months, it retained moisture, and it is healthy – which makes me happy because I was worried about it getting dry and damaged. 

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I had planned on wearing the twists for the summer, but they didn’t last. I may get them installed again soon. Who knows…I love having my hair out.

My summer hair

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Well, it’s done! I spent ALL DAY yesterday getting kinky twists installed…started at noon…finished at 10:15 pm. 😐

I’m not ecstatic…the work is not what I expected. She used way too much hair, it’s not as neat as I’d like it to be and being that she provided the hair, it’s not the quality that I would’ve bought myself. I should have gone with my initial idea and let the person who had done them before do them. But I took a chance on someone new. On a positive note, my hair is put away and I was able to help someone in need because I know she needed the money. 

So, I prepped my hair Friday night by giving it a good clarifying wash, deep conditioning, and then applied a clay masque. I finished by applying Elasta QP Mango Lime Intensive Leave In Conditioner, sealed with grape seed oil, and used Dr. Miracle Acai Thermal Protection since I knew she would be blowing my hair out.

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Bentonite clay masque

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Bentonite clay masque

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After clay masque

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After clay masque

My hair loved the clay masque!

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Moisturized and sealed

I used an excessive amount of leave in. It may not make much of a difference, but it made me feel better because I am worried about not being able to keep my hair moisturized adequately.

End result

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The following day

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