Comparing Curls

Hey guys! Its been a while since I've posted a picture of my hair. Today I did a summery puff (a puff on wet hair left to dry in the style as opposed to my puffs I do on a dry twist out due to the cold weather)and remembered a picture I had of one I did back in July. Here's a picture of today side by side with the picture from six months ago! Now, this isn't the official length check but it is a pretty cool look at how much my hair has grown. Keep in mind, though, that I've trimmed several times over that 6 moth period.



Here's some tips/knowledge that you may find helpful!

The Correlation Of Exercise & Healthy Hair

Lack of physical activity will definitely lead to brittle or lusterless hair. It’s a surprising fact but there is a direct correlation to exercise and healthy hair. If you spend endless amounts of time in front of your computer or TV and have a bad posture then rest assured, you will have unhealthy hair.

Such behavior or posture results in the poor circulation of blood in the head. Combined with the ill effect of stress and age, it makes for a potent combination when it comes to hair loss. Like any other part of the body, your hair needs nutrition, as well as, exercise.

Increase Flexibility

You simply cannot exercise your scalp; hence you must exercise those parts of the body that will directly promote the circulation in your scalp. Hence you must undertake those exercises that increase the flexibility of your neck and back. Once the blood is circulated in a proper manner, nourishment of the hair follicles will take place, and these result in hair that is healthier and more in volume.

Exercise Help you Relax

Extreme pressure at work and also at home is the order of the day, in these modern times. You are under constant pressure to perform both at work and at home. In the meanwhile, you health goes for a toss and more often than not you will suffer from severe stress. This results in irrevocable hair loss.

Exercise not only gives you flexibility of muscles, but also helps you relax and feel happy. All in all, this combination will be good for your hair.

Exercise and Diet

You must combine your exercise with a generally nutritious diet. This is great way to combat hair loss and have healthy hair. After all, hair is also a part of your body, and if the body gets nourishment, so do the hair. If you do suffer from a continuous hair loss, you must take in a vitamin friendly diet as they would help in hair growth and the strengthening of hair.

No Medication

Regular exercise precludes the need to take medication for your hair loss problem. It’s a long process but an effective one. More importantly, you no longer have to search high and low for those miraculous drugs that claim to minimize hair fall. It has been medically proven that exercise helps in the reinvigoration of the body, and at the same assisting the hair growth.


Honey Olive Oil Treatment

The other day I came at you guys with some home made conditioning recipes for you to try out. Well, I tried out the Honey & Olive Oil treatment and I must say I LOVED it! I, of course, did things a little different but my hair turned out absolutely incredibly and I had to share with you all.

The Recipe:
Suave Humectant Conditioner (enough to be applied to your entire head)
Pure Honey (2 tbsp)
Extra Virgin Olive Oil (2 tbsp)
Mega-Tek (2 tbsp) I only added this because I needed protein but didn't want to use egg.

The Process:
First, I co-washed and detangled with Ganier Fructis Fortifying Triple Nutrition Conditioner, and twisted up my rinsed hair in small sections to prevent tangles. I left my hair uncovered while mixing up the ingredients to my conditioner so it wasn't soaking wet when I applied the conditioner. To apply, I simply untwisted each twist and applied conditioner to one of the two sections at a time before twisting that section back up. (hope that made sense) I repeated this process until my entire head was conditioned and twisted back up. For about 20-30 minutes I sat under my hooded dryer with the settings on high heat and then rinsed in warm water. First off, my hair felt stronger to the touch when i rinsed, I think I can thank the Megatek's protein for this. Secondly, when I looked in the mirror, I could actually see my curls and waves. Usually, after rinsing my hair it's just a mass of hair sitting on top of my head; no curl, no waves, just matted and mangled hair. These two positive and instant improvements to my hair are enough to get me to use this recipe again as well as recommend it to you all.

After rinsing, I used my Giovanni Direct Leave-In Conditioner and a little Coconut Oil and flat two strand twisted my hair back in 6 twists for my hair to dry overnight. I used a little castor oil to seal the ends of my twists and tied my hair up for the night. Not allowing my hair to dry while it's out is a part of my effort toward healthier hair, as allowing hair to do so often causes single strand knots which, as we know, are just another form of split ends!

Here are some of the products mentioned in this post:


Product Review: Ganier Fructis Triple Nutrition

Hey Guys! Back again with another Product Review! This time, Garnier Fructis Triple Nutrition Shampoo & Conditioner! It isn't everyday that I review a shampoo so listen up!

The Conditioner:
Honestly, I wouldn't rate this conditioner as any kind of extraordinary, phenomenal or ground breaking product. It's just a conditioner. I guess the only thing that could really put this one over the top and onto my recommendation list would be the price. I found this at Walmart for about $2.50. The ingredients in it are of quality so this price really can't be beat. Its first ingredient is water which automatically lets us know that this product is going to be moisturizing to the hair. Cetearyl Alcohol is next which of course scares us because of the "alcohol" but this is actually an ingredient that we want to see in our conditioners as it adds weight without leaving the hair greasy. It also contains Behentrimonium Chloride which helps to detangle, as well as various oils and fruit extracts. The only product that really set off an alarm is the Stearamidopropyl Dimethylamine which was also seen in the Proclaim Olive Glossing Conditioner that I reviewed last week but upon research, its rare that this ingredient actually does any damage to the hair. The greatest measure I could see myself going to to avoid any damage would be to simply not leave the product in my hair for extended periods of time (i.e., as a leave in). Other than that, I think you should be fine. Overall, this conditioner is a really good conditioner, especially for the price. It has great ingredients that speak to the curly population. However, I think the Proclaim is the better conditioner and would not recommend this conditioner over that one.

The Shampoo:
Now, while I kind of played the conditioner to the far left, I must say that this shampoo is freakin' great! It runs for the same price as the conditioner: cheap! Honestly, I really couldn't care less what was on this ingredients list. Whatever it is, it's winning. BUUUT, for your sake, I will actually care for just a few minutes, hehe. So first is water, of course, next is Sodium Laureth Sulfate which as we know is not as damaging as Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate. This ingredient is marked as "okay" in the ingredient dictionary which means that it is not damaging. It is simply a cleanser, which, *shrug* shampoos need. All in all, the ingredients are of quality an pose no threat to curly/kinky hair. What I personally love most about this shampoo is how it does not leave that moisture stripped, squeaky clean feeling as most shampoos do. As natural haired women, we need to keep as much moisture in our strands as possible. Curly hair without moisture is often very frizzy, matted and highly prone to breakage. This shampoo leaves the hair feeling clean yet moisturized. I have to stop myself from overusing it. I usually use shampoo about once a month but with this I might go crazy and start to use it once a week or once every two weeks. Please ladies, do yourself a favor and GO BUY this shampoo! All you need is a ride to your nearest Walmart, 3 dollar bills and a pocket to put the change in! I'm telling you, it's worth it! If I ever get organized enough to do so, I will be creating a regimen for myself and this shampoo will most definitely be in it!


All Good At Home Goods

Hey guys! I just got back in from a little shopping in my nearby Home Goods. Home Goods is a store best known for its furniture, bedding and, well, Home Goods. However, I think it's a great place for natural girls to head to when re-uping on those good ole oils that we love so much! I bought a 500 ml bottle of Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO), a 500 ml bottle of Grape Seed Oil and 2 14 fl oz jars of Coconut Oil. The EVOO ran me $4.99 and the Grape Seed Oil and the Coconut Oil just $5.99 each! Even better for me, I was using a gift card! A couple weeks ago I went looking for some Coconut Oil at a Natural Market and almost ran out of there when I saw that price tag of $13.00 for a jar about the same size as the one I bought today! I highly recommend you all to search to see if there is a Home Goods near you and check them out as soon as possible. It's a really great store!

Most of us use the oils (and some others) that I mentioned above to seal in the moisture that we put into out hair or just for a bit of added shine, but did you know that these oils can also be used as a natural heat protectant? Each oil has its own burning point, or max temperature it can withstand before burning. Until an oil is exposed to that temperature, it does a great job of protecting your hair from heat. I hear Grape Seed Oil does a great job at protecting and also leaves hair feeling silky smooth after straightening! Give it a try! Here's a link to a chart that tells you exactly how much heat your favorite oils are built to withstand! Compare this with the temperature of your heated hair tools to choose the right natural heat protectant for you!

Until Next Time, Happy Healthy Hair Growing! :)

Side note:, with the exception of the coconut oil, these are the exact brands of oils that I bought today. My EVOO was in a different packaging but it's the same brand. My coconut oil is by Sonoma Harvest.


Homemade Miracle

"before I fried, dyed and laid my hair to the left side" -DJ

Hey there! Here are a few treatments that I found while sniffing around online. They're quick, simple and can be achieved on a budget using a few ingredients that you more than likely have lying around anyway! I plan to give a few of them a try as I try to get my hair's strength back up to what it was before I fried, dyed and laid my hair to the left side! Just as soon as I take my twists out which I foresee happening sometime during the week ahead. Let me know which ones you're gonna try out and how they work out for you! I hope this helps you ladies out!

Honey-Banana Hair Pack: Take ½ banana, 1 tbsp each of honey and lemon juice. Mash banana and mix honey and lemon juice to it. Beat the mixture until it is frothy. Apply this mixture when hair is dry. After 20 minutes, wash it with mild shampoo.

Olive Oil Mask: Take 4 Tbsp of olive oil and take two whole eggs. Blend both the ingredients thoroughly. Apply it into the scalp evenly. Now cover it with a shower cap. Wash your hair after ten minutes.

Hair balm prepared from milk: It is not a preparation; it is just a simple application. After you wash hair, rinse it with some milk and leave it as it is for 10 to 15 minutes. Then rinse it with little warm water. This simple procedure helps to bring back the softness and shine of the hair.

*Hair mask prepared with honey and olive oil: Take three tbsp of olive oil and ½ cup of honey. Blend them well and apply into the scalp and hair evenly. Coat all the hair. Cover your hair with shower cap. Leave it for half an hour and wash with shampoo. (I plan to use this treatment but in doing research I found that applying pure honey to the hair strands first worked best for a lot of women so I'll be putting that spin on this treatment and reporting back.)

To increase volume of hair: You need one tablespoon, each of honey and vinegar and ½ cup of warm water. You will also need a spray bottle. Mix all the ingredients and pour into the bottle. Shake it well. When you shampoo your hair, let it dry a bit. Now spray the mix into your hair and gently rub it through. Do not rinse after that.

Treat Damaged hair: Take Fresh juice of a lemon, yolk of two eggs and white of one egg and one-tablespoon honey. Blend all the ingredients and massage gently into the scalp and hair. Wash it with shampoo after ten minutes.

Quick Tip: applying a dollop of aloe vera gel (from the plant) can help to provide smoother hair.

Fly Away & Static Control: Apply a small dab of organic hand lotion to the palm of your hand. Rub hands together and apply to roots of hair. Purchase by clicking here.


Motivation For The Masses

"any goal is attainable but no journey is immaculate"-DJ

This post has absolutely nothing to do with hair. I repeat, this post has ABSOLUTELY nothing to do with hair!

Over the past two weeks or so I've been trying to lose weight. I started with the Special K diet and lost 4 lbs in the first week! Diet and exercise was definitely working out for me. But then....week two came and I actually gained 2 of those pounds back! I was miserable, depressed even. Probably one of the worsts feelings I've felt in a while. But I was reminded of these words: "failure is not falling, but choosing to stay down". I find those words profound for two important reasons. One, it acknowledges that falling is a part of the journey. We're all human and even those who we all look up to in their successes have more than likely had times of doubt, discourage and sadness; three feelings that I knew all too well when I stepped on that scale. This part of the quote says to me, any goal is attainable but no journey is immaculate. The second reason is the part of the quote that says "choosing to stay down". This, to me, says that no matter how defeated you may feel in whatever it is that you're trying to accomplish, you will always, Always, ALWAYS have the choice to either give up, or continue to push onward. Whatever failures or obstacles you may come across don't have to be permanent. They can be knocked down and not allowed to distract or discourage you from what you were so excited about on day one. Today is day 17 for me and I've worked out almost every single day. I don't plan to give up, I plan to push harder for what I want and I hope that this motivates you all not to give up on any goal that you are currently trying to reach. Even past failures. Its never too late to try.


Terrific Twist Out

While browsing BlackHairMedia.com I came across these tips from one of the ladies on their on how to achieve a great twist out!

"1. Start with clean, conditioned hair (less frizz to begin with means less frizz to end with)

2. Use a holding product (gel or whatever gives you hold). Butters won't do much if there isn't a hold factor to them. Unless you started with wet hair to begin with. I prefer dry and stretched. But that's me.

3. Give it time to "set" Day after twisted doesn't work for me. At least a few days is best.

4. Oil before undoing and don't pry them apart like you're at war. Gentle now. Unless you want frizz

5. Go smaller for more definition

6. Don't ignore your hair when in twists. Moisturize and seal as usual. Very important

7. Get the pins and hair accessories out!!!"


Bigger Is Better

As you all may have gathered, I enjoy my mini twist styles. However, mini twists take me anywhere between 6 1/2 to nearly 8 hours! After being on my youtube and looking at a few of my subscriptions, I was inspired to try my twists a little differently; bigger. The obvious benefit to making my twists larger was that it would most certainly reduce the time it takes to install them dramatically. Also, it offers me an out whenever I get tired of them without thinking of all my hard work going to waste. So, I did it. I did my twists about double their usual size and it only took me about 2 1/2 to 3 hours. Major difference. It was almost a breeze. I will say, however, old habits die hard. I have a few twists in the bunch that are a little smaller than the rest just because it felt weird to be gathering that much hair. So I plan to keep these until...well, whenever I get tired of them.

So lets rewind. <<<< Remember when I was telling you guys about how I was pondering a second chop after my graduation pictures and yadda yadda yadda? Well, I think I have leaned back over to the side of reconsideration. I'm not sure that's exactly what I want to do anymore. While I do still want a fresh start, I just don't think I'm ready to let go of the length that I've acquired so far. Not saying my hair is anywhere near long, I just feel as though I've come a heck of a long way from last year and I don't really want to go through all of that again. So fast forward to the present >>>> Unfortunately, I've noticed a major change in my hair. The thing I've feared since before I even did my big chop last March. Yup, you guessed it: DAMAGE! My hair is damaged you guys. I'm not exactly sure when or how it happened but all signs are pointing toward my dye job and excessive heat over the fall semester. Bad, Bad, Bad! If you remember, my pattern in the front was ridiculously loose anyway. But now? Its almost non-existent and I hate it. So instead of a second big chop, I guess you can call what I plan to do a second transition. I'll mark the beginning as late August 2010. I will continue to do trims until all of my damage is gone and try to do better at taking care of my hair. That means more protective styles, more deep conditioning treatments and less heat. Eventually (not sure when) I want to go on a 12 month NO HEAT challenge. I've got to get my hair back to the condition that it was in last summer. And I will.

P.S., this post is dedicated to my best friend Tasha who harrassed me for at least 20 minutes via skype about blogging. :)


Product Review: Proclaim Olive Glossing Conditioner

A few weeks ago while shopping in Sally's for my LeKair Cholesterol Plus, I stumbled across a new conditioner called Proclaim Olive Glossing Conditioner, which I'm sure you could guess from the title of this post. The product was sitting at the front counter on clearance so I thought "why not?".

Now, I won't say that I've found my favorite conditioner ever but I will definitely recommend you all give this conditioner a shot. The smell is really nice, a little sweet, but I like that and it's very moisturizing. I used it as a leave in and absolutely LOVED the effects. My hair was left feeling moisturized for at least 3 days without adding on any more products, which is GREAT! The product's claims are as follows: Provides brilliant shine, moisturizes and smoothes the hair, leaves hair soft, silky and healthy-looking."

I can truthfully say they were not lying! This product is great! Apparently, it's also good for preserving your color! Upon doing research on the products ingredients I found that its second ingredient, Cetearyl Alcohol, is very very good for curly hair as it "adds needed weight without being greasy". It also has Isododecane which prevents water from evaporating from the surface it is used on (i.e., locks in moisture). So all in all, this product gets a Girl, Yes! from me!


Recessionista Quick Tip

Hey! Here's a quick and practical tip you can use to cut back on your heating and water bill. Since so many of us like to detangle in the shower (and for good reason) I was thinking; what if instead of allowing the water to run without purpose down our back and down the drain, we simply turned them off? Given the length and thickness of your hair, detangling can be a real process; a time consuming one at that! Don't allow your money and hot water to slip down the drain when it isn't necessarily being put to good use. Handle your showerly business as usual, and then proceed to detangling your mane with that faucet off! Afterwards, rinse if you must, but don't let the water just run.

Do you have any other helpful hints for saving money and/or helping the environment? Let me know in a comment!

A Classic Twist

Hey guys!!! I am so excited about this post! Why, you may ask? Well, I'll tell you! I have finally made my first tutorial video and I can't wait for you all to see it! In the video below I am giving a tutorial on the style that I accidentally discovered the other night while trying out the other twist style. In the video I used a comb but I don't like the neat look too much and highly recommend using just your fingers!


Ya Live & Ya Learn

So I finally tried out that twisted style that I posted a tutorial on a few weeks back and I'm here with pictures and comments. First of all, I am still absolutely IN LOVE with this style. Just, not so much on myself. It's really quick and easy and I would recommend it highly to anyone looking for a sophisticated style or someone who thinks they look good in up dos. Unfortunately, I am not one of those people who think up dos "dos" me any justice. (cue bad joke sound effects *womp womp*) It took about 10-15 minutes to accomplish this style on a still slightly damp braid out. I left the style in for the entire day, mostly wrapped up, until I finally retired it to try yet another, more fitting style. I have pictures of both below. On the up side though, the twist style provided for a very nice twist out to do my next style on. My hair was elongated and this way I had more hair to work with. Oh, the other thing I wanted to make mention of. The youtuber in the tutorial twisted her back section upward whereas I made individual twists and pinned those up into the top twists. I thought that added a little more jazz to it. Give it a shot and let me know how it came out. Here are the pictures of both styles! Enjoy!


Trader Girls

Don't forget ladies! You can share your story and be featured on my blog by submitting a "Trader Girls" form (found below) to my email DonnaJenay@aol.com!


Hair Status: (Transitioning/Natural)
Hair Pictures: (4 max)

Check out past Trader Girls by clicking tag under "quick search" to your left!

Sharing is Caring

Here's a video I found that may come in handy for you! Enjoy!

Happy New Year!

Feliz Anos Nuevo! That's HAPPY NEW YEAR! It's 2011 and I am definitely ready for the wonderful things that this year will have in store! My only real resolution for this year is to lose 20 lbs by May for my graduation. I figure the more people I tell, the more likely I am to stick with it. This would mean the world to me if I were able to accomplish my goal and reap the benefits of the hard work that I plan to put forth. My first step is the obvious: begin working out; but I want to take it much further than that. I want to limit my drinks to only water and my new favorite health drink Bolthouse Perfectly Protein Vanilla Chai Tea as well as cut back on junk foods, greasy foods and fast foods. Three things that I refuse to give up however: Chic Fil A breakfast biscuits, Wise Cheez Doodles and cream of crab soup from this amazing seafood place near my house. Now these foods aren't an every day thing and thus they shouldn't pose too big of an issue in my journey. Also, my sister is giving up meat throughout her own personal weight loss journey which should make it a little easier for me to stay on track. Today I'm going to ride the stationary bike and tomorrow I will power walk around my neighborhood with my sister. She's a bit under the weather and so we're playing it safe by not going out today.

As far as my hair goes, I don't really have any resolutions. I have, however, been toying with the idea of a second chop. My ends are horrible and I think I have identified my hair's natural enemy: the blowdryer. It seems no matter how many split ends I trim, right after I blowdry, I am greeted by the same problem again. I will probably be chopping shortly after my graduation pictures are taken since I think I want a little length for that. Now, when am I taking my pictures? Who knows! I'll definitely keep you all updated though. But enough about me. What are your New Year's Hair Resolutions? Share in a comment! I'd love to know! Until next time, Happy Healthy Hair Growing!

P.S., just a quick update, I successfully completed my No Heat challenge. I did not apply direct heat to my hair until the night before Christmas! I'm pretty proud of myself on that!