Monday, November 22, 2010

Goodbye to Glycerin for Winter?

Many of us in the Natural hair community have discovered Glycerin for a use far beyond the unforgettable Jeri curl of the 1980’s.  Glycerin is a humectant, and it holds on to water, reportedly up to 3 molecules.  Glycerin can help increase and maintain the moisture levels in our hair. It is also best used when mixed with water, for two reasons. Number one, glycerin can be thick or sticky and difficult to apply, and second mixing it with water can supply a direct source from which moisture will be constantly drawn. 

Most of you are probably aware that glycerin will pull moisture from the air and absorb it into the hair shaft; which is great news for naturaly dry hair during the summer months, where there’s typically more humidity in the air.  But, whether or not we should use glycerin on our hair during the winter months has been a subject of debate.  Many discontinue the use of glycerin because of the popular belief that because the air is drier during colder months, there is no humidity in the air from which glycerin can draw from, leaving the glycerin in the hair no choice but to pull moisture from the hair, which will dry it out.  However some natural hair scientist have found that when you mix glycerin with a significant amount of water,( 1 part glycerin to 3 part water or more) it is highly unlikely that it will abandon that water, for the moisture that you’ve added to your hair from other products. When we think about it, this theory does make sense. Have you ever seen a dry Jeri Curl, summer or winter?  

  In most over the counter products that contain glycerin, you’ll find water as the first ingredient. If your hair loves glycerin, you may not have to avoid it like the plague, on this winter; just make sure you are giving your hair enough water to work with.

What are your thoughts and experience with using Glycerin on your hair during the winter months? If you have tips, please share!!

and, to learn more about the benefits of Glycerin please visit the following link:

Monday, November 15, 2010

Protective Styling.....

Braid Extensions

With the winter season closely approaching, protective styling becomes extremely popular amongst healthy hair growers! Whether you protect your hair to shield it from harsh weather climates, to retain length, or simply take a break from styling your hair, protective styling is a must if you wish to grow and maintain a healthy head of hair.   

 To wear a protective style simply means to shield or cover. It is essentially keeping the ends of your hair tucked away. Our ends are the oldest and most fragile part of our hair.  The protection of our ends is imperative if we wish to grow and maintain a healthy hair length.  (You can also opt for ultimate protectective styling from heat and excessive handling due to styling by covering all of your hair.) 

Half  Wig

When we protect the ends of our hair, we have fewer to no split, or frayed ends.   Did you know, the more you protect your ends, the fewer trims you'll need, and the longer your hair will become? If you answered yes, then you're already ahead of the game! If not, then what are you waiting for?  It's time you made a healthy hair decision, and choose a protective style!

 Here are a few options:(most extensions should stay in no longer than 2 months at a time when you're protecting for health)

  • Braid Extensions(medium sized, not too tight )
  • Two strand twists extensions
  • Wigs (full cap or 1/2)
  • Full sew in weaves( not too tight please)
  • Scarves
  • All natural two-strand twists(in updo, or pinned)
  • Buns
  • Updo's
  • Faux Pony tails

What's your favorite protective style? (mine is obvious!)

Braids( in an updo)

*Happy Healthy Hair Growing!!!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

KinkycurlyHair- Keeping the Confidence

The decision to wear your hair in its natural texture is a personal and exciting journey. If you are like most African American women you were relaxed at a very young age and had little to no memory of what your natural hair texture was like before going natural.  However, once your hair's full identity was  revealed, you became amazed at the creativity of God, and begin to understand that He did not make a mistake when he created Kinks, Coils, and tight curls.  We soon become confident, and proud of who we really are, but for many, holding on to that confidence can be somewhat challenging.  

Here are some of the most common challenges reported by naturals, and tips on how you can keep the confidence while on your Natural Hair Journey:

  People’s reactions to your natural hair  
Others will not always share your same enthusiasm for natural afro textured hair.   Be prepared for mix comments and reactions to your hair. Many will love it, and some will hate it, and others will have no comment! Just remember, that no matter what the response this is “your journey.” People are entitled to their opinion, but in the end, it’s your head.  Do what makes you feel good about your hair, and stand by your decision. People will soon admire your strength and courage, and some of your biggest naysayers will become admirers. 

Moisture issues
Kinky, Coily, Curly hair needs more moisture than relaxed hair. Because our hair is tightly coiled or kinky, natural oils take longer to travel down the hair strands, leaving our hair dry. This is why we have to add moisture back into our hair.  Remember that water is your best friend. Co-wash or Hydrate  your hair at least 3 times a week to keep it moisturized.  Avoid using sulfate shampoos, and make sure all of your moisturizing hair products are water based.  Hair that is well moisturized is easier to manage, and it retains length.

Styling challenges
Styling for some naturals can be challenging depending on the texture and thickness of our hair. Also lack of styling skills can be a factor.  All naturals run into up’s and downs when it comes to styling their hair.  Whether you’re out of styling ideas or just down right tired of dealing with your hair, there is always a healthy remedy. You don’t have to look to chemicals to bail you out, patience and practice will yield results. Never give up on your styling goals. Visit websites like You Tube and for natural hair styling ideas. Also remember it’s okay to take a break, wear protective styles like braids and twists, this will also help you retain longer lengths of hair.    

Time maintenance
Washing, Detangling and Deep conditioning, it all takes more time with natural hair, so be patient. Invest in a good detangling comb or brush, and always wash and detangle in sections.  Realize that your afro textured hair is delicate and should be treated like silk. Give yourself enough time in your sessions to care for your hair. Also find styles that you can put in that will last a few days; such as twists, twist outs, braid outs, even wash n go’s can be refreshed for easy get up and go hair!  

Hair Envy
How many times have you longed to have hair like someone else? Hair that is fuller, shiner, curlier, thicker, wavier, anything but what is growing out of your own scalp?  Hair Envy can be very detrimental to your natural hair journey, and your overall self esteem.  You will never be able to appreciate the uniqueness of your hair, if you are constantly comparing it to every natural head of hair you see. Understand that no two textures are alike, and that everyone has their own unique set of challenges that come with their hair texture. Learn your hair, know what makes your hair fabulous, and hold your head up high. 

Love your hair, and your selves, may God bless you richly.