Monday, September 26, 2011

20 Weeks Post Relaxer

Soooo... Things went pretty well this time.

Yeah, I know my part is crooked:-)

I decided to do my first shampoo OUTSIDE the shower. I separated my hair into about eight sections, sprayed it down, applied shampoo and scrubbed like mad.  I pinned each section up, until I could hop in the shower.

Once in the shower, I rinsed each section out and applied a second round of shampoo.  My hair felt squeaky clean.  I know most naturals and transitioners are not fans of this feeling, but I like it. I want to know that my hair is clean.

So next I used A LOT of VO5 creamy conditioner to put some moisture back in there.  I finger detangled, rinsed out the VO5 and deep conditioned with Neutrogena Triple Moisture mask.

From there, I sat under the dryer for 15 minutes, rinsed out the conditioner, dried it with a t-shirt, applied Knot Today Leave-in and braided it up.  I later applied a little Shea Moisture Curling Enhancing Smoothie and coconut oil.
I didn't really style. I was lazy, I pulled it into my normal 'Black Mormon 'do.'

To summarize: It took two hours to wash and detangle my hair because of all the sectioning, BUT... and it's a big BUT... my hair did not violently curse me out.  It was darn near nice to me. I still felt like I lost more hair than most, but I did not have a three hour detangling session and that alone is a blessing.

I think I'll try this same process next week and see how things go.  If I like it, I may try to toss in some curlformers to switch up this incredibly boring look.

Side note: my scalp is still itchy. I think the change in seasons is getting to it. I need to find a good moisturizer for it.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Week 19

So after last week's disaster of a detangling session, I decided to wash my hair in six braids.  That means I detangled with water, coconut oil and my fingers before I hopped in the shower. Next, I took down each braid, washed and rinsed and braided again.

This method kept my hair from getting tangled. I added my deep conditioner and sat under the dryer for 15 minutes, rinsed it out and rocked on to a braidout.  Oh, I should add that I decided to use my sheaMoisture conditioner as a leave in, instead of knot today (I'm not sure I'll do that again). I thought I was in heaven.  There was absolutely no drama, until my hair dried.

My hair felt dry and strange. After some research, I determined that I didn't clarify my hair very well with this method.  As you may have figured out from this blog, I'm not the brightest crayon in the box, so I had to do lots of thinking to come up with a solution to this problem.

I have decided that I will once again finger detangle my hair with oil and water, but I will have to return to washing my hair in two sections with a part down the middle.  From there, I plan to rinse and finger detangle with v05, until I have three braids on each side.  Next, I'll hop out of the shower and apply my deep conditioner and rock on from there. I sure hope this works out.

I feel like I do my best work when I plan it out ahead of time. Otherwise I get tired and panicked and grab whatever product that I see first.  So here we go.

1. wash with the remainder of my design shampoo and follow up with my gionvanni tea tree

2. condition and detangle with my vo5

3. Deep condition with my ORS replenishing conditioner

4. Use Knot Today as my leave-in

5. I'm not sure on a style. If all goes well, I'll pull out the curlformers. If there's too much drama, I'll braid it up in preparation for my boring-a**-bun.

Monday, September 12, 2011

18 Weeks Post Relaxer

After my last wash session, all I could do was hide my
head and hug my dog.
Oh.My.Goodness--This entire situation is getting out of control.  Today's detangling session took FOR-ev-ER!  I  really don't know what to do. My hair proved that it would really like to become a dreadlock.  I found lots of big fat knots in the new growth area and they did not want to go.  So of course they took a few innocent by standers with them.  Between the shedding and breakage, I don't know if I'll have anything to transition to.  I know some folks would probably say that I should just cut it off and start from scratch, but I am pretty sure that is not in the cards for me. I don't want to wear a TWA the same way I don't want to wear the Halle Barry look.  That's just not me.

I am trying  to keep my eye on the prize: a decent length of healthy, natural hair for a great twist out. But OMG seeing so many soldiers leaving my head. I don't know what to do. I don't know what I'm doing wrong. I read the blogs and they make it seem like this stuff is a breeze.  It is not. I think I detangled from 5:30p to 8:30p tonight. I was as gentle and patient as I could be and it still was not working out. Maybe what I choose to use as a detangler isn't right for me.  I have to do some more research. I am going to win this battle AND find a way to do something else on Sat besides just do my hair. Lord, I'm tired after I battle that stuff.

My Curlformer Story Ain't No Fairytale

Ok.. since my last writing, I tried my beloved curlformers and lets just say they worked and didn't work.  I ripped out two big chunks of hair and I put waaay too much product in them, which meant my hair was nasty.  Since, I paid so much money for them, I figured I better do some more research on them to make them work.

Here's a list of what went wrong with the first session.

1.  I styled my hair the night before an early morning flight to Vegas.

2. My hair takes forever to air dry.  so I decided to blow dry the hair, before placing it in the curlformers. 

3.  Due to impatience, I slapped a lot of coconut oil on my hair with the hope that it would provide the necessary slip to get my hair through the contraptions.  BIG MF PROBLEM!!!  That's how I ripped out  two big chunks of hair.

4. I ran out of curlformers for the front part of my hair.

Sooo with all of that drama layed out for you, here's my plan to recover.

1.  I will get a hooded dryer.

2.  Style my hair when I am not tight for time and I have some patience.

3.  I will re-watch Naptural85's tutorial multiple times before I style.  I think she's on to something and I think it will help me prevent breakage and make the curlformers that I have cover my entire head.

Hairy Assessment

I tried to assess some things after that god awful session.

The first week I did my hair, I thought I made a mistake by doing a braid out on dry hair. 

Now I know that wasn't the case.  I did the right thing.  My hair takes entirely too long to dry and using that curling butter on damp hair is just plain drama.

So what I plan to do is follow some of the same things I did this week.  That includes a thorough washing with lots of lather, deep conditioning immediately after, detangling after the deep conditioner and letting the hair air dry.  I will then put it into a bun, until I do everything I need to do for the day, then I will set the braid out:-)

At this point, it takes me a day-and-a-half to do my hair because it takes so long to dry.  That takes  away time with my husband and makes me uncomfortable in my own appearance.  So I think with this minor tweaking, I should be able to work things out:-)

Also, I think I want to try twisting.  The braid out is kicking my tail---BIG TIME.  Plus, I think it forces me to manipulate the hair more than I think I should be.  I mean REALLY?! After a great detangling session, I basically ripped my hair out trying to do those stupid french braids.  ugh!

Back To Hair

I thought I was finally making some much needed progress on the Do-it-yourself hair, but I was wrong.  Here's the long version of the story. I wrote it all up on wash day. I was so optimistic... and so wrong.

There's a strange chance I may be on to something this time around.  I had to take a moment to type up everything I did.  I hope I can replicate it.  Of course, I'm saying this before I even get to the styling portion.  BUT I'm just so freaking excited that the detangling process was a breeze.

Before getting in the shower, I sprayed my hair down with the Silken Child detangling leave in conditioner.  I let it stay on my hair maybe five minutes. I'm not sure because I wasn't really paying attention.  I was just trying this to be goofy.  Anyways when the water hit my hair, my hair was soft.  Normally it feels raggedy because I'm coming straight out of the braid out situation.

Next I shampooed one half of my head, pinned it up then tacked the other side.  I let the shampoo sit on there a few seconds then I rinsed out each side and washed again.  I got a really good lather on the second washing and left it on there for a full three minutes (I mean I counted out, 'one one-thousand...').  I'm starting to think this particular shampoo may not be best for me because it makes my hair a bit dry and tangled, but at least it got my hair clean this time.

Once I thoroughly rinsed out all of the shampoo, I applied a HEALTHY  amount of my deep conditioner to each half.  I stuffed it under two plastic bags and let it sit for a little over an hour while I chatted with my mother.  When I hopped back in the shower and rinsed the conditioner out, my hair felt soft, moisturized and DETANGLED.  I split each half into a fourth, which left me four sections.  Next, I used my wide toothed comb to gently detangle each section and braid. 

Before getting out of the shower I squeezed each section to try to get some of the water out.  Then I used a white tee-shirt to blot each section.  I sat for about ten minutes before I slathered on some Kinky Curly Leave-in. I pinned each section up, while I came to type this up.  Once I'm done with this, I'll hop in there and seal in the leave-in with some coconut oil.  I'll let it dry some more then I'll tackle the styling part.  I'm so hoping this is my break through.

It could be odd since I'm almost out of my shampoo and conditioner.  Yikes!

(I should add that even though I feel I got a good wash. My scalp doesn't feel the best.  It was a little itchy, but now it's feeling a bit better.  I don't know.  I'll re-visit this issue later.)

OMG!  I thought everything was going great.  My hair was looking shiny and detangled, then I put on all my crap for the braid out and it got tangled again and I couldn't french-braid it.  I know I'm tired and I probably should have waited until tomorrow to set my hair because I was mean and brutal to my hair.  I feel so bad about it.  I left a lot of soldiers on the floor.  I just pray that I've mastered the washing part and maybe, I'll begin to master the styling part.  I think I'm over the stupid braids! I think I'm going to buy some magnetic rollers and work on a roller-set.

I think I'm hurting my hair more than helping and I'm really disappointed.  I wanted to help my hair. NOT kill it.  The whole purpose of this journey was to save money and nurse MYSELF back to healthy hair, until I could afford to pay someone to help me.  This really just sucks:-(

16 & 17 weeks post relaxer

So, after the curlformers fiasco, I had to style my hair for my Aunt's wedding in Chicago.  I couldn't get anyone to do it.  So, I washed and braided it the night before my flight.  Once again, I left some soldiers on the floor while braiding. I left the braids in for the flight.  Heck, they were in for nearly 9 hours and my hair still wasn't dry.  Luckily, I had an old hooded dryer from when I tried doing my own hair in my college days (BTW, I only used it once. Whomp!).  I sat under that sucker for about 30 minutes.  It dried the front really well, but the back was still damp.  However, my hair was beyond presentable for the wedding.  I even got compliments on it.

The very next week, my friends were flying in from Florida.  I had no time to style, I washed and let it air dry about 40%.  That was enough to flatten the front, then I bunned.  Because the front of my hair is so jacked up, I section the hair in three parts.  Two parts in the front and the main part in the back.  I place the back in a ponytail holder and make two twist.  I wrap those around for a bun.  Then, I two-strand twist the front two pieces back towards the bun and pin them underneath.  I kind of look like a church girl, but I owned the look and I'm making it last a week.  I think I'll keep bunning until I buy my hooded dryer.

On a side note: I just got my order of Shea Moisture products from Walgreen's.  I'm really hoping they will work.  I'll let you know how the washing and detangling goes from there.
I think I have some breakage in the crown area. I don't know if it was there already and I just started noticing it or I ripped it out.  I'm leaning towards the latter.  I think I need a new detangling comb.  My current one misses some things and causes frustration.  That's when I get to pulling and breaking.
I really need a hooded dryer. I want to buy this Babyliss one, but with shipping, it costs $103.  I guess I need to stop being cheap. Then again, maybe they should be cheaper.

Spiteful Hair!

Jesus! My hair seems to not just despise, but hate me.

I spent three long painful hours detangling it on Saturday only to have it rebel against me again the very next day.

I am trying desperately to figure out what I'm doing wrong. I used a moisturizing shampoo, conditioner and deep conditioner. My hair felt fantastic wet, but when I got out of the shower, it straight up cussed me out.

I dont know if my hair wants me to give up, get a perm or simply go to a professional.
As for my hairline, it is still jacked and I don't see any signs of recovery.

In all, I think my hair is breaking off more than growing. I really thought that if anyone could nurse my hair back to health with love and care, it would be me. BUT apparently that's not the case:-(

At this point, I have the entire kitchen sink in my hair (leave-in coconut oil, herbal essence long term relationship, aloe vera gel and Shea moisture curl enhancing smoothie). And believe me it has done nothing to stop the hair rebellion. I'm seeing quitting, defeat and failure in my future:-(