Here’s my latest Youtube Video where I go over a few updates for my channel and natural hair
journey. I even speak a little bit about what I’m doing with my hair now for moisture during the colder weather.
WATCH MY LATEST HAIR UPDATE ON YOUTUBE
My Protective Style Challenge
This weekend I posted a video to help keep all of my viewers up to date on my protective style challenge. I started wearing my natural hair in protective hair styles in hopes to retain more length this year. I would like to see my hair at least a few inches longer so I thought putting it away would help speed things up.
One Name to Rule Them All
Last month I took the plunge and renamed my Youtube Channel. It was something that I was contemplating for some time now. It feels good to have one name across all of my social media platforms as well. Just makes things so much easier for me.
Winter Hair Routine and New Products
Lately I have been playing around with a couple of moisturizers to help boost my curly styles. I’m having great success and mention both in my new video.
Be sure to stop by my Youtube Channel for more hair tutorials and curly hair updates!
A few weeks ago I realized that my hair needed a protein treatment. This may contradict what we are told in the Natural Hair community where popular belief is that natural hair doesn’t need additional protein. A protein treatment is often used to give added strength to hair strands. A lot of people think that since natural hair is free from chemicals that alter the texture, then the protein core is safe. However, there may be other times when a protein treatment is needed. The following are things that I look for when caring for my own natural hair
5 Signs Your Natural Hair May Need a Protein Treatment
1. Excessive Shedding
When the hair sheds you’ll find full strands of hair with a white root bulb on one end. Shedding is considered normal at a rate of 50-100 strands of hair each day for most people. However, you may notice a drastic change in your rate of shedding that continues for a prolonged period of time. A protein treatment may aid in reducing the amount of shedding.*
As I stated above, a protein treatment can give added strength to hair strands which in turn helps to protect the hair from breaking. If you are seeing small pieces of hair breaking and it’s not shedding then this may help.
WATCH ME USE THE
APHOGEE 2 MINUTE KERATIN RECONSTRUCTOR
PROTEIN TREATMENT ON MY CURLY HAIR
3. Change in Hair Texture
This can happen after using heat. The higher the temperature the more damaging the heat can be. For this reason you may find your hair is not curling back up or reverting back to your normal texture. I have experienced this several times and I always turn to a protein conditioner to see if that helps. If not, the damage may be permanent but at least the protein gives the hair an added layer of protection.
4. Excessive Split Ends
A few split ends here and there can be considered normal. It’s when you’re seeing a significant number of splits that you should be concerned. This calls for a trim and then maybe a light protein treatment to strengthen the hair and prevent further damage.
5. You Use Direct Heat and Hair Color
Some naturals are relaxer free but use hair dye and direct heat to alter the look of their natural hair. These can potentially lead to damage (cuticle layer damage or porosity issues) that can cause dryness and breakage.
What to Use for a Protein Treatment
A protein treatment can be made at home with mayonnaise, eggs, coconut milk and or avocado. There are also store bought conditioners that claim to fortify the hair with added protein. Look for things that say, “Strengthening” or, “for Damaged Hair”. This means there is protein in the ingredients list that may be helpful for hair that is dry, damaged and/or breaking. I like to apply a light protein conditioner to my hair and sit with it covered by a plastic cap for about twenty minutes. Remember though, anytime you use protein treatment on your hair it must be followed by a moisturizing deep treatment. Too much protein can make the hair feel brittle so the moisture will help to balance things out.
NOTE: If your hair is sensitive to protein then this may not be an option for you.
*Excessive hair loss can also be a sign of stress or a deeper health issue. It may be best to seek professional help if the condition does not respond to the use of protein or other at home treatments
In January I started my own protective style challenge to see if it would help me with length retention. Normally I enjoy wearing my hair out because I love how versatile natural hair is. This made it a little bit harder for me to decide on a style for the challenge. To keep it interesting, I decided to change up my protective style each week. Here’s a rundown of each style I wore for the first four weeks of the challenge.
I’ve been experimenting with wigs off and on. I thought that the challenge would be the perfect time to practice my wig skills. I braided my real hair into two dutch braids underneath my synthetic wig. I found that this was one of the easier styles.
Protective Style #2-The Bun
Easy Low Bun
Now that my hair is getting longer, I can actually work it into a pretty decent bun. For me this style works best on stretched hair. I usually put my hair into a ponytail and split the ends into two sections. I twist each of them then wrap the twists around the base of the ponytail. Then I use bobby pins to secure the ends. I really like how this look can be worn for an everyday, casual look or dressed up.
Protective Style #3-The Puff
Low Puff; Low Manipulation
Technically this isn’t a protective style. However, it is low maintenance and keeps my hair off of my shoulders. After cleansing and conditioning my hair, I detangle my hair and slick it back or up high using hair gel. I use a ponytail holder or banana clip placed sideways to secure it into place.
Protective Style #4-Dutch Braids
Dutch Braids on Straight Hair
This has been a go-to style for me for ages. I just part my hair down the middle and do a braid on each side. In the picture my hair was straightened but this look also works on wet, damp or stretched hair.
With each protective style I like to smooth my edges with Eco Styler gel which is a staple for me. I also found that my hair needed heavier moisture for styles that are meant to last a whole week. I think my favorite was actually the puff style. My ends were out but it took the least amount of effort. Overall, my first four weeks went well. I’m planning on going for another four weeks wearing some of the same styles. What are some of your favorite protective hair styles?
This month I was excited to receive another beauty box from We Are Onyx. The monthly Onyx Box subscription service caters to women of color and is always a treat.
The theme for February is, of course, love but more like pampering yourself. Items like these are a nice reminder that it’s okay to stop and make time to take care of your hair and body.
A beauty box service is a fun way to find out about new products. This month, I am delighted to find shampoo and conditioner from a brand called Acure. Both are made with all natural ingredients including Moroccan Argan oil. I recently switched back to using ammonia free hair dye so it’s nice to find a shampoo and conditioner that are color safe.
I’ve always wondered how my curls would react to using flax seed gel for styling. Now I can finally put it to the test with Carmella Marie’s My Gel. The product also contains jojoba oil which I understand is good for the hair and scalp. I can’t wait to try it!
Speaking of scalp health, there is also a So Posh Beauty Herbal Hair Tea in this month’s Onyx Box. It has a blend of natural herbs for a tea that conditions the hair and treats the scalp. With peppermint and rosemary in the ingredients list you know it smells delish. Another product that smells good enough to eat is the Coquito Bubble Stuff shower gel by Honeycat Cosmetics. This is what pampering is all about! With ingredients like coconut, honey and rum you can’t go wrong.
To round out the offerings in this month’s box of goodies we have hair products from Creme of Nature. There are two samples from the new Straight from Eden line as well as a full size container of the New Butter-Licious Curls Styling product. All three products are made with natural ingredients and are mineral oil, petrolatum and paraben free.
Shop the Box!
The February Onyx Box will be available through the end of the month so head on over to weareonyx.com to find out how to get started. You can also find full size versions of these and many other products at weareonyx.com/shop
NOTE: This month’s box was sent to me courtesy of We Are Onyx. I am not affiliated with any of the products and/or brands mentioned in this post. Please visit weareonyx.com for more information.
When my hair was relaxed, I never took the time to deep condition my hair. I had a pretty simple regimen which included shampoo, conditioner and a leave-in conditioner. If I had been introduced to do the idea of using a light protein treatment, my hair might have been a lot stronger. Since I was clueless back then, my color treated, chemically straightened hair broke off like mad.
I heard about the Aphogee line when I was doing research on how to keep my hair from breaking. The two step protein treatment sounded a little too involved for me. However the conditioner like Keratin 2 minute Reconstructor I thought was worth a try. I started using it once a month during my transitioning period and experienced a lot more length retention.
WATCH HOW I USE
APHOGEE’S KERATIN 2 MINUTE RECONSTRUCTOR
After doing my big chop I figured I didn’t need the product anymore. I started wearing my natural hair straight once a month and quickly learned that my hair still needed protein. That’s why I still use the light protein treatment by Aphogee. It is my go to product when my curls need a little help. Now, don’t get me wrong, this product will not bring severely heat damaged hair back from the brink. It will however help strengthen damaged hair and lessen the chance of breakage. Take a look at my video to watch a quick demonstration of how I use the product.
DISCLAIMER: If your hair is protein sensitive then this product may not work for you. Be sure to read the product instructions prior to using this product. I consider this to be a light protein treatment but if used too often it can lead to dryness and breakage. Always follow a protein treatment with a moisture deep conditioning.