Scalp Psoriasis and Hair Growth Update

Earlier this year I wrote a post about how scalp psoriasis led to a major hair setback last fall.  I ended up losing a lot of hair due to all of the daily shampooing and detangling it took to keep my scalp under control.  After a few months I was left with see through ends and breakage.  It was disheartening because my hair was actually in really good shape before my scalp went out of control.  As a result, I decided to give myself a trim and move forward with an updated healthy hair routine.

One of my main goals was to grow my hair back to it’s former length before the damage.  This meant that I would need to retain as much length as possible.  I also wanted thicker hair around my hairline because my edges appeared to be losing hair as well.  The scalp psoriasis ended up on my forehead, neck and ears so it took my edges out right along with it.  

wash n go side by side comparison
Top: My curls earlier this year with product for more hang time. Bottom: This is my hair in May after rinsing out deep conditoner. My hair hangs longer when wet but shrinks up more now that it’s healthier

 

I’m happy to report that I’m seeing a lot of progress!  I haven’t straightened my hair for a while so I’m not sure of what my current length is.  My edges have grown in nicely and my hair also has a lot more shrinkage.  I also cut new bangs back in March which I’ve decided to grow back out.  They are currently past chin length.  

Closeup of hairline edges
My edges are coming back in and the scalp psoriasis around my hairline is gone

What I’ve Been Doing to Retain Length

I hadn’t been taking very good care of my hair (obviously) so I decided to make some changes to my hair routine.  I started testing and reviewing deep conditioners on my hair and have noticed a difference in my curls.  My hair always feels so much more manageable after a deep condition so I can tell that they are effective.  Still, I think that I should be deep conditioning once a week if I really want to see more length.

As far as styling goes, I’ve been going back to braidouts again.  I used to wear braid outs all of the time but got lazy I guess.  Doing a wash n’ go is just so much easier so I always go with that style when I’m in a hurry.  A braidout shows off more length for me though since I have crazy shrinkage.  I also use plait braids with coils on the end so I can still see my curls.  

Braids and braid out hair style
Top:  Here’s a look at the plaits that I use to style my braid out. I coil the ends by re-wetting and combing through them with a fine tooth comb.  I then twirl them with my fingers for a spiral coil.  Bottom:  My braidout after fluffing and Seperating

 

One of my favorite ways to do a braidout is to wear a wash n’ go for a couple days and then braid it up.  This way, my hair already has product in it from the wash n’ go style.  I just wet each section, detangle with a denman and braid it up.  For a second day with this style I’ll add a little coconut oil to help keep frizz under control.  I coil the ends by wetting them and then combing through them with a fine tooth comb.  Then I twirl the ends with my fingers until a small spiral curl forms.  Since I have gel in my hair from the wash n’ go, the curl sets as it dries.  It’s also easier to sleep on because I don’t have to use rollers when I curl my hair this way.

Protective Styles

This summer I’m really trying to focus on wearing protective styles.  In my last post I wrote about all of the options for summertime styles for protecting your hair.  For me I’ll probably be wearing a bun during the week and having it out during the week.

I would also like to try crochet braids because that way I can wear cornrows underneath a curly style.  My scalp is a little irritated though so I may have to clear it up first before starting a long term protective style.  Currently I’m back on my vitamins and supplements that kept my scalp psoriasis under control.

 Hair Progress after Scalp Psoriasis
This is my hair with no product in May 2019

Making Progress

Overall, my hair is definitely improving.  Scalp Psoriasis is still an issue for me but I’m learning that I don’t have to wreck my hair while managing my scalp.  My goal is to grow my bangs out to collar bone length so that my wash n’ go looks more like it did by the end of last summer.  I’m also looking to try some new products because I have a feeling that I need to rely less on my Eco Styler gel for curl definition.  

Watch this space for more about my hair journey and hair product reviews in the coming months!

 

 

5 Ways to Maintain Hair Growth

My natural hair journey started because I wanted longer hair.  I honestly thought my hair wouldn’t grow long because I was black.  That sounds pretty crazy right?  Well, information on how to maintain hair growth was not as abundant as it is today.  This was long before the term, “natural hair,” even existed.  So I did what most people did at the time; I sought help from a hair stylist.  

I Went to a Stylist for Help

A co-worker suggested I see her  “Master stylist” who apparently knew a lot about different hair types.  I booked an appointment and drove to the mall where her salon was located.  When I arrived, the stylist met me at the podium just outside the entrance.   I told her I wanted a haircut and also that my hair wouldn’t grow for some reason.  She condescendingly asked, “Why isn’t your hair growing?”  I just looked at her; speechless.  Let’s be honest.  If I really knew why my hair wasn’t growing then why would I drive all that way to see a, “Master” stylist?

This was around the first time my psoriasis flared up so my scalp was covered in flakes.  I can’t even begin to describe how embarrassing it was to have someone checking my hair and scalp right there in the mall with all those people walking by.  It was the absolute worst! Turns out, she only had me down for a consultation and insisted that I schedule another appointment for her to actually style my hair.  Really?

Continue reading “5 Ways to Maintain Hair Growth”

Can Hair Vitamins Really Grow Your Hair?

Naturally Curly Hair side view

Long before I started a healthy hair journey, it always seemed like my hair stayed at or above my shoulders.  Out of frustration I decided to search online for a solution.  I was met with several ads for hair growth vitamins.  At the time, it made sense to me that maybe I was lacking nutrition in my diet.  I thought I needed a supplement to help my hair grow.  I quickly ordered a bottle from some company I don’t even remember and waited for them to arrive.

If I knew then what I know now, I might never have even placed the order.  My hair at the time was relaxed (chemically straightened) and color treated.  Both of which were damaging chemical processes.  Combine that with the fact that I used heat daily and you’ve got a trifecta of unhealthy hair practices happening all at once.  After I had zero result from taking the hair growth vitamins I was back to the web to find a solution to why my hair wasn’t growing.

 

Continue reading “Can Hair Vitamins Really Grow Your Hair?”

New Year, New Hair Goals

www.curlyincolorado.com
Wiggin’ It!
Wearing my new everyday
lookby Freetress

I want three more inches!  My hair has been stuck at APL (armpit length) for what seems like forever.  Part of this is due to my frequent trimming to even out my layers and add thickness.  Now that my layers are growing out, I want to concentrate on overall hair growth.

At the end of 2014 I started looking into ways that I could retain more length in the new year. Of course a lot of people with longer hair contend that protective styling is what got them the hair we all lust after.  I for one am not keen on putting my hair away for months at a time.  I love variety and my scalp does not do well under such conditions.  It looks like cleansing my hair multiple times per week is preferred.  So any type of long-term protective styling is out.

I do still want at least three more inches though and I want them this year!  I’m thinking along the lines of protective styling on the go with wigs and half wigs.  I can braid my hair up underneath the wig and no one would be the wiser.  This would also allow for washing and co-washing whenever I need to. 

So far, I only have two wigs and a diy u-part wig which requires that I leave some of my own hair out.  My current wig selection is okay but, I’ve got my eye on a couple of styles that may be more in line with what I’m craving right now.  I don’t want to wear anything too outrageous.  Just something to get me through the next few months while I quietly hide my real hair. 

www.curlyincolorado.com
Same wig with shorter bangs

As far as haircare goes, I plan to keep my hair in good condition by doing deep treatments weekly.  I will probably use things like light protein treatments, moisturizing deep treatments and hot oil treatments.  I have videos for how I do these on my Youtube channel.  I’m also putting away the scissors.  I can’t seem to get enough of those blunt cut ends but I’ve been cutting off all of my progress.  I do like to do a light trim on my ends every three months though so we’ll see.  Here’s to reaching new lengths in the new year. . . fingers crossed.

4 Month No Heat Challenge

Finally!  I’m gonna stop being stubborn and just own up to the fact that using heat on my hair is keeping me from achieving greater lengths.  I had my suspicions of this earlier this year but now I’ve decided to put myself to the test.  Even though I like the look of straight hair, I’m going to go without using my flat iron until February of 2014.  This may sound like a walk in the park to those of you who gave up straight hair a long time ago.  For me though, I’ve actually kept up with wearing my hair straight every other month.  Sometimes I even straighten twice in the same month.

Of course I saw how other naturals who were gaining two to three inches of growth every time they decided to lay of the heat for a 4-6 month break.  Still, I kept up with the same regimen hoping that maybe my light protein treatments would rescue my curls.  After having to trim some loose curls last month I decided that that was the final straw.  Using heat means I’m gonna be up for a trim so the more I use it, the more hair I lose.  I just can’t keep doing it so it’s time for me to step away from the flat iron and just style my hair in other ways.  Here’s a video discussing the, “rules,” for my personal no heat challenge.  Feel free to join in!

4 MONTH NO HEAT CHALLENGE