The Best Places to Visit this Summer



London, Summer '17
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It’s summertime! My favourite time of the year because it’s the best time to travel; when all the best summer destinations are warm and sunny. I love sunshine and bikinis and sunglasses and ice cream. What can I say, I’m biased. I’m Nigerian okay; I was born in the heat, I can’t stand cold and I’m certainly not going to fly halfway across the world on holiday for teeth chattering and hiding under blankets. Everyone else thinks this way, so travel costs tend to skyrocket during summer. Except now it’s so cheap! There are Cheap Flights to all the best places worth travelling to this summer.
Travelstart is doing a Summer Sale. The last time they had a massive sale on flights was Black Friday. Everything was sold out before noon the same day. I know because I tried to buy a dirt cheap ticket to London and it was all gone. *Cries in Pounds sterling*

The best places to travel to this summer:

LONDON


It’s my favourite city because I’ve been there a bunch of times, had a blast each time and it’s like a second home. Like most Nigerians, I have lots of family and some close friends there so guess who doesn’t have to pay for accommodation? Hehe. If you want to shop, this is the best time to go because all the stores are on sale and you’ll get clothes you can rock year-round in Nigeria. I’m about to cop one of these cheap flights from Lagos to London before you people finish everything.

London, Summer '15


NEW YORK


Everyone has to visit New York at least once. In the summer it’s even more alive and pulsating. There’s so much to do: concerts, festivals, food trucks, outdoor movies, ball games, tennis games, theme parks… My mom and my sister were together in New York last summer. I was so jelly. I haven’t been yet, but my friend Adaeze keeps telling me how we need to go to New York and explore hundreds of food spots because apparently New York is a food mecca and she knows that food is the way to finally get me. I just want to get on one of these cheap flights from Lagos to New York. I’ll come back fat and happy; summer body be darned.

DUBAI


Dubai has been on my radar for years, but money. My friends and I have been talking about a girls’ trip since forever. A couple of them have gone on their own (traitors) and they won’t let us hear anything else. It’s hard for all of us to be buoyant at the same time but with flights from Lagos to Dubai this cheap, I’d say we’re running out of excuses.

JOHANNESBURG


South Africa has kind of been aggressively promoting travel to their country and to be honest I’m sold. The tourism there is live. It's like a merger of the big city experience in places like Jo'burg and prime wildlife in the parks. Sisi Yemmie has gone a number of times and always shares what she gets up to. Johannesburg is different from the other places I mentioned above. Because it is in the southern hemisphere, it’s actually colder from June to August and not crowded; unlike December to February when it's hot and more people are visiting. So if you want to escape Lagos heat, there are unbelievably cheap flights to Johannesburg. Room rates are lowest this time of year too.

I’m getting serious wanderlust. I must do my own Summer ’18 too. Are you in?

XX,
NGND



Vacation in Lagos: Whispering Palms Resort Badagry Review



Hello everyone,
Last month I had some time on my hands and went on a 3-day vacation to Whispering Palms Badagry. I didn’t plan to blog about it but at the end of my stay, I knew I had to review it. It was an experience. Everyone that saw my Insta stories wanted to know where I was. 

The plan was to go to a place that would feel like we were not in Lagos at all, without actually leaving Lagos. The major requirement: water. Nothing comes close to the feeling I get beside a natural body of water. The peace and calm, and then you dip a toe in, aaahhhhh. Next thing I’m fully considering how to leave my whole life behind to live on the beach and forage coconuts.

There are a number of waterside resorts in Lagos but the price tag per night can be intimidating for regular people like me. When I saw Whispering Palms online for N15,000 per night, I was excited.  They’re right on the Lagoon front. We called them a few days before and packed our bags the night before the trip. 
We had set off before we remembered how costly food and drinks can be in places like this, so we stopped at a supermarket to get bottled water and snacks- apples, popcorn, bread and spreads; and then Gin, limes, mint leaves and Limca to make cocktails! I was so ready.

The Journey
The trip to Badagry took longer than we expected. That Lagos-Badagry Expressway has potholes here and there so it will slow you down. We took along someone who lives there or we would have stopped several times to make sure Badagry was still ahead. From Ikate Lekki, it took 3 and a half hours.  Me, I slept off. We kept joking that we are definitely outside Lagos. Our tour guide wasn’t having it though: “It is still Lagos”. He works in VI and goes to and fro every day. RESPECT. I could never. The good part is the map turned out to be very accurate so you don’t need a guide.

Sign by the Express. The Resort is still 20-30 mins in.

Whispering Palms
We finally saw the sign for Whispering Palms on the other side of the road and we cheered while making the turn. If only we knew we still had a 20-30 minute drive ahead of us. Haha. We FINALLY arrived at Whispering Palms and it was instantly so worth it. 
No noise, clean air, palm trees everywhere. I didn’t know I was going to do a blog post when I went there so I didn’t take many pictures, but I will share what I did take. We also wanted to minimise use of our phones and it made us truly absorb and enjoy everything.


You can plan a day trip or you can stay over. Entry fee for a day trip is N2000 for two people. If you’re lodging, you won’t pay the fee.
They are busy during festive periods. December is peak period. I prefer when it’s quiet so May was perfect.
Parakeets by the reception

The Rooms
They have a main building with classic rooms which cost 15k; a set of chalets that cost 18k per night, and some more luxury villas ranging from 40k/night for a room to N150k for a 4-bedroom. We stayed in their classic rooms so for two people sharing that’s N7,500 each. We asked to pick our rooms and they let us view all the available classic rooms.
Main Building with Classic rooms
The Villas

 You can tell that it’s an old building with ceiling fans and an old style bathroom but that’s part of the charm. My friends loved the old-timey feel. I’m more of an ultramodern girl myself when it comes to hotels and especially bathrooms, but I found myself feeling the charm by day 2. There’s a TV, a fridge, a hot water kettle for tea, wardrobes, a dining table and chairs. Simple, functional stuff. The intercom in my room wasn’t working and they graciously offered to change the room when I noticed but I didn’t want to move. A worker gave me her number so I’d just call.
 The bathroom has hot and cold running water and a tiny shower stall.
Like many old spaces, the room was big and very airy. My favourite part of the room was the balcony with a view of palm trees, and the lagoon in the distance. 

It was bliss waking up in the morning and sitting out there. The bed was huge- big enough for 3 people to sleep on comfortably so if you really want to save, that’s an option. No shame in that. My girls and I used to be 3-4 in a hotel room when we were in school and needed to have a Girls trip. Best times of our lives I tell you. Then we couldn’t wait to have money and now we miss those days (Not that we’re now rich or anything, just less broke).

Facilities and Activities at Whispering Palms
It’s a big place. On Day 1 we requested a tour. They have an outdoor pool, an outdoor gym, a mini zoo with monkeys, a baboon, turkeys (didn’t know they live in zoos too), a crocodile and a 103-year old tortoise.
Outdoor gym
You can also play football, basketball, tennis and volleyball. They have a restaurant and I think 2 bars. We took an evening walk by the Lagoon and there was this cool breeze coming from the water that gave me life.



 We went by the Coconut Dispensary- I love that name- where you get fresh coconut to drink for just N200.
Source: Whisperingpalmslagos.com

The plan (not my idea) for Day 2 was to wake up early and work out in the outdoor gym but God made it rain that morning and we slept in. Praaaise God! The weather cooperated throughout our stay. That rain didn’t last till 10am and we went outside to meet mild weather- a beautiful day for outdoor activities. They have Quadracycles to ride in twos. If you're alone, a member of staff can ride with you.



It’s N1000 but don’t be afraid to negotiate. The person on the left has control so switch up if you both want to steer. This was so much fun. They said the 1k buys you 20 minutes but they didn’t stop us when the 20 minutes were up. We all rode for about 30 minutes before we wanted to do something else.
Out on the Lagoon they have these yellow rowboats you can ride for N1000. 

Source: Whisperingpalmslagos.com

Unfortunately, the water level was too low that day, even with the rain earlier, so we couldn’t ride. We changed into our swimsuits and spent the evening swimming and sipping on coconuts (and Gin).


Is this baby girl life even complete if you’re not sipping on a coconut, poolside?


On Day 3 we took an early morning walk around the grounds to take in the scenery.

Seriously, what flower is this? I love it
We also discovered swings close to the bar and the water. I probably spent too long swinging.
After that, we went out to take a tour of Badagry. If you need Whispering Palms to arrange the tour, complete with a bus, a tour guide and light refreshments; that’s N12,000 for every two people involved (6k each if you’re contributing). If you’re using your own car, N7000 for every two (N3500 each). 
We called our Badagry person to take us and we went independently. After going on the tour though, we thought the Whispering Palms cost was actually fair and we tipped our friend well.
Badagry is an ancient town famous for slave trade. They have a lot of museums and relics of the slave trade era. I’d love to share all about that but this post will be too long. Maybe a separate post?

Food
Food is the expensive part of Whispering Palms. No matter what you’re eating, average cost is N3000. Whether it’s yam and eggs for breakfast, poundo yam for lunch or basic rice, hold your 3k. If you plan to eat three meals per day, it adds up. Our snacks came in handy; we each had 2 meals a day. The food is alright. The fried rice isn’t great so pick Jollof. It won’t be the best Jollof you ever had but it will do. They’re better at soups. Their egg sauce is okay too. The turkey is nice. Order an hour before you intend to eat because the food is made-to-order.
This tree overhangs a walkway that leads to the bar
Moremi statue and story

The Service
Everyone was so polite; they’ll greet you with a smile and answer all your questions patiently. I was impressed. Maybe when you work in such a relaxing environment, you’re happier. 
Once you’ve paid for your room, you’re a registered guest and your meals and activities get added to your tab until checkout. None of that annoying insistence on pay-as-you-go like some hotels in this country. They’re also willing to waive certain charges for lodging guests. They eventually didn’t charge us for the Quadracycle ride. You may have to call to remind them of something you asked for before, but generally they were proactive and very helpful.

Electricity
Light isn’t on 24 hours if NEPA strikes. You’re assured of 12 hours a day: from 4pm to 10am. If you don’t ask they won’t tell you and that’s not fair. However we didn’t mind because we were mostly out doing stuff from 10am to 4pm anyway.

Total Cost: We spent approximately N50,000 each including snacks and fuel. Some less, some more. Depends on what you eat. You can hold up to N65,000 each to be very safe, especially if rooms are N20,000 and you’re paying for the tour. This is about £100-120 and $150-170 each if you have 2 persons sharing a room. Less if you’re more in number.

Advice:  
  •         Call ahead to confirm current prices.
  •         Take snacks and water (for a day trip, I don’t know if this is allowed).
  •          Negotiate prices of activities especially if you’re many.
  •          Order your food at least an hour before you want to eat.
  •          Tour Badgary.
  •          Bring swimwear, slippers and sandals, and airy little clothes.
  •          Don’t sit indoors! Come out and do stuff.  Swing. Play with water. Sip coconuts. And take a picture with a flower in your hair.

Will I go again? Most definitely. We’re already talking about going in an even bigger group next holiday.

XX,
NGND
Have you been to Whsipering Palms or Badagry before?


Shea Moisture Raw Shea Butter Restorative Conditioner Review

This is a long overdue review of the Shea Moisture Raw Shea Butter Restorative Conditioner. It's a product from one of their earliest collections and it was one of the first Shea Moisture products I ever used.

If you didn't already know, I'm a bit of a Shea Moisture collector. Over time I have bought and used a lot of their products and I owe you guys A LOT of reviews. I figured we'll start with an oldie.
This is a good time to mention that I bought this with my money, though I will always give my honest thoughts on any product I review regardless.

IMPORTANT: I usually copy and paste ingredient lists directly from brands' sites for my reviews. It was in this process that I discovered that there are two different Raw Shea Butter Restorative Conditioners from Shea Moisture. One of them is the one I used, pictured below. Under the name, it says "Dry, Damaged Hair. Heal, Grow & Strengthen". It's free of protein.

The other one on their site in exactly the same container says "Damaged, Transitioning Hair. Moisturize & Fortify". It is a different product with a different, longer ingredient list that includes silk and soy protein. You can see it all here.

This review is for the former, pictured below.

Features
Packaging: Transparent pump bottle with orange label



Price and Availability: Varies wildly. Beautiphic.com, Kinkyapothecary.com, Sizzelle.com carry it, as well as Perfecttrust.com.ng (the official Shea Moisture distributor in Nigeria) but they all seem to be sold out now. I can only find it on Konga and Jumia for N6500. I was fortunate enough to get this months ago from beautiphic.com on sale for N3000.

Smell: Mild, floral. I love it.
Colour and Consistency: White, thick.

Add caption




IngredientsDeionized Water, Butyrospermum Parkii ( Shea Butter)*, Argan Oil, Coconut Oil*, Behentrimonium Chloride, Essential Oil Blend, Vegetable Glycerin, Emulsifying Wax, Sea Kelp Extract, Panthenol (Vitamin B-5) Avocado Oil, Lonicera Caprifolium (Honeysuckle) Flower (and) Lonicera Japonica ( Japanese Honeysuckle) Flower Extract, Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Daucus Carota Sativa (Carrot) Seed Oil 

       Clean, awesome list.

How I used It
The directions said it can be used as a rinse-out, a deep treatment and a leave-in. I used it in all these ways and as a co-wash conditioner.

My Assessment
Holy grail product!

As a pre-poo: It softens my hair on contact. Just melts right through. If my hair is dry and matted, this is what I reach for and it tames the wild creature ( I love my wild creature, don't get me wrong).
For a deep treatment in my pre-poo step, I leave it in for longer under a plastic cap and my hair feels like SO hydrated, soft and detangled when I take it off. When I do this step, the rest of wash day is a breeze.

As a rinse-out: After shampooing it helped soften and detangle but once I rinsed, it felt like I had wasted the product. It completely rinsed out. That's a good thing if you want a rinse-out conditioner that leaves no residue, but I missed how it made my hair feel. I no longer rinse it out.

Co-wash: Didn't work for me as a co-wash. I found it too rich to cleanse anything.

As a leave-in and hair moisturiser: This is the conditioner's purpose in life. Kaiii. I'll say it again. Holy grail. I have experienced consistently soft, moisturised, can't-stop-touching hair with this conditioner. When I use it as the cream step in my LCO method, there's a clear difference. I can go days without re-moisturising. Since I've been using it consistently, my moisture levels have gone up and my hair looks and feels healthier. It's also not greasy.

I'll stop gushing now. A picture is worth a lot of gist:
I will scrape out the last of this product any way I can. Don't worry, I have a full bottle now
A reminder: My hair is thick and kinky coily or type 4.

Cons: You need some elbow grease to keep using the pump mechanism. It's a bit too flimsy for such a thick product and sometimes even stops working (I just unscrew the cap. It's inconvenient but...)

Verdict: I highly recommend.

Will I repurchase? Already have and will continue to.


Have you used this product before? What was your experience?

Xx,
NGND

Natural Nigerian Moisturizing Deep Conditioner Review

   Hello my people,

Today I'm reviewing the Natural Nigerian Moisturizing Deep Conditioning Treatment with Shea Butter and Herbs.
When Natural Nigerian launched her new products, I couldn't wait to try them.
Because deep conditioners are my favourite thing, this had to be first.
 This product is made in Nigeria. (Yay #BuyNaija)

Quick note about Natural Nigerian: she is VERY particular about living a very natural life- all the way from food to self care to cleaning products. No gimmicks. It is a life I am committed to (still on this journey) so I trust the quality of her products even before I buy.
Whether or not her product will work for my particular need, I can afford to skip reading the label and know that I'm not using anything that could potentially harm me. Of course if you have specific allergies, read labels and avoid your triggers, natural or not.


Features
Packaging: White jar, green label on the cover and the body. Clean and simple. I like.


Price: N3800 (about 10 USD now)

Smell: The only thing I can compare it to is plastacine. I loved playing with it as a child. I googled and found that plastacine gets its smell from flaxseed (aka linseed) oil but this product doesn't contain that so I guess something similar? Dunno. There's also a slight herbiness to the smell. On the whole it's mild enough and doesn't linger.

Colour and Consistency: Beige. Not too thick: it'll flow nicely if you tip the jar.



Product Description:
"A medley of herbs, juices and vitamins make Natural Nigerian™ Moisturizing Deep Conditioning Treatment a super nourishing, moisturizing, strengthening treat for hair. It contains ingredients that repair damage as well as prevent damage. It also sixteen amino acids (building blocks of hair) and contains an ingredient that is scientifically proven to improve hair combability and increase hair shine."

Ingredients:
 Aqueous extracts of Chondrus Crispus (Irish Moss), Arctium Lappa (Burdock root), Ulmus Fulva Bark (Slippery Elm) and Yucca Schidigera (Yucca Root), Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Juice, Butyrospermum parkii (Shea Butter), Cocos nucifera (Coconut Oil), Behentrimonium Methosulfate (and) Cetearyl Alcohol, Polyquaternium-11, Hydrolyzed Quinoa, Hydrolyzed Adansonia digitata (Baobab) Seed Protein, Benzyl Alcohol (and) Salicylic acid (and) Glycerin (and) Sorbic acid, Neem Oil, d-alpha tocopherol (Vitamin E), Panthenol (Pro-Vitamin B5), Guar Hydroxypropyltrimonium Chloride.

Guaranteed no added: Artificial colours, fillers, preservatives, Additives, Synthetic fragrances


          Great ingredients. Now let's get to the tea.

How I used it  I used this product like I would any other deep conditioner. I put it on my damp hair after cleansing with shampoo or clay, covered with a plastic bag +/- a towel so there's some heat; then rinsed after 45 mins to an hour. Sometimes a lot longer.

My Assessment
When I applied it, it didn't sink in immediately but as I continued to work it into my hair it did easily. 
It has a fair amount of slip but this probably won't dethrone your favourite detangling conditioner. It didn't immediately soften my hair like some other deep conditioners I've used but I was willing to wait.



One thing, it's not greasy at all. You may feel like you want to pile it on, but don't. You'll waste it. 

When I rinse off a deep conditioner that is moisturising, I expect my hair to feel very soft, lush, hydrated.

If it's strengthening, it should feel strong. Not hard and and difficult to work with, but strong so that it feels like it can handle some manipulation without breakage. I get this after a protein or an ayurvedic hair treatment.

If it's a balancing conditioner (strength + moisture), it should feel soft and hydrated, as well as strong. It's something you'll understand when you feel it.

NN Moisturising Deep Conditioner definitely fell into the strengthening category for me. When I rinsed and touched my hair, I went back to read the description and ingredients. It could be the 16 amino acids, the quinoa and baobab protein; it could be the yucca or any of the other plant extracts; or it's a combination of everything... but it was for sure a strengthening treatment for my own hair.

I also noticed more shine. Even when my hair was wet it seemed shinier that usual so I know this product did some work of filling in gaps and patching up my strands.

 I got the nourishing and strengthening parts of the product description, but I didn't get the moisturizing part with that 'Hair like Buttah' feel.

 I was a bit let down the first time because I was expecting fluffy cloud hair and I wasn't due for a protein treatment. But looking back I should have read the ingredients before using and since I know my hair, I would have known when to use it.

I have type 4 hair, normal to high porosity, not protein sensitive but will readily be strengthened when I apply protein. 
If your hair is like mine, I'll say treat this product like a protein treatment. Save it for when your hair needs one and follow with a moisturising deep conditioner.
 Orrrr just mix the two together for a balancing deep conditioner. I used it up before I got this idea but it's a thought. I might have to buy again to try this.

If you have fine hair, this product might be balancing enough for you on its own (I should get my sister to try it). Also, even if your hair looks like mine it could respond entirely differently from mine.

I haven't seen any reviews yet on this product, but NN shared a video of this product on her daughter's hair and it really looked like it deeply moisturised her hair.

Verdict: Quality ingredients, great for strengthening and shine. Not as moisturising as I've come to expect.

Will I repurchase? Maybe. If I'm looking for a strengthening conditioner. If you read my blog often you'll know I use eggs for strengthening but I'm getting more interested in veganism so I might pick this up again.

You can get it online at naturalnigerian.com/ahia, I bought mine at Yellow Sisi salon in Lekki. Some stores in Lagos and Abuja also carry her products but I couldn't find a list. She posts them on her Instagram though. 

Thoughts? Talk to me in the comments.

Xx,
NGND










Budget Curly Crochet Hair


 

  Crochet is my favourite way to protective style. It's so easy, versatile, and it can be as expensive or as pocket friendly as you want. I prefer pocket friendly; girls can't just be spending lau lau on hair that we will throw away. We have dreams.

 You can do pretty much anything with crochet. If I can imagine a style, there's a way to achieve it with crochet and on a budget too. Latest in my imaginings: Big curly crochet hair. 

Now I'm in Nigeria and the variety of crochet hair isn't exactly overwhelming. I mean, there are all sizes of braids and twists but what about the loose hair? You can't just walk into the market/supermarket hair aisle and find a variety of curls or even straight hair to choose from. If there are online vendors, cost will be a factor. 

People usually put in crochet twists and then unravel them after a few weeks for a bomb twist out right? Idea! 
I can just unravel it before putting it in. That way I can control the size of the curls and how they are arranged. 

I went to the supermarket in search of really soft crochet twists. The softest I found was by some brand called Glow. After I got over the bias from being shown pepper by Glo network, I was very happy (Glow has no affiliation that I know of to Globacom o).  It's called Glow Bouncy Mambo Twist. This had "2X Value Pack" on it.
 Careful now, Glow has another crochet twist hair that isn't nearly as soft as this. I think it's Jumbo. Make sure you get the Bouncy Mambo.

 I wanted 12" but they only had 18" in this brand. It was the best so I decided I'd cut it. At least it was in Colour 2 which I wanted.

And then I discovered they only had two packs. I bought them for N1650 each. I went to other places, even a natural hair salon in search of at least one more, but no one had. I went back a couple of times after that to see if they had restocked but nope, nothing.

Eventually, I convinced myself I could make two packs work. One midnight, nervous, I got to work.
My cornrows were basic- straight back with 8 in front, joining a couple to make 6 at the back. Fewer cornrows means you need less hair to fill them up. I joined the two that made the centre parting and the two that made the side parting.
Something similar.
Source: Breanna Rutter

I cut the twists in half and unravelled. So I was working with 9 inches.
If you want perfect curls, don't divide.

 I like messy curls and you can get that look with curls of different sizes. So most at the back were divided into three, and some into two, some into four.

At the front, most were divided into four, and some divided even further.



The crochet process with a latch hook is easy, YouTube has tons of tutorials.
Also look up how to do an invisible part with crochet.

Centre part

All done with the main hair. Now the part I really pay attention to: the hairline and the cut.
 Most people naturally have shorter, wispy hair in front to frame the face. I like to make my crochet have a natural look so I mimic that.
I halved two again so I had 4 pieces, 4.5 inches in length. I divided them into small curls and crocheted them to the very front.
Side part. Notice the little pieces making up the hairline?

They're small and light so they won't do any damage to your edges.
 Biggest surprise, I used only one and a half packs!
Then I cut all around with scissors carefully to suit my face until I was happy with the shape.
Next step, go outside and shiiine. But it was like 3 am or so at this point so I carried my fine hair to bed.

It was time to shine

Care
  • I pack it up at night in a pineapple and wear a satin bonnet that frankly doesn't cover the whole thing.
  • In the morning I take down, fluff the curls and push them into shape, and cut off any matted ends. Over time, it loses some volume and length from this process so I add a little more if I want it bigger again. I still haven't used up the second pack.
  • I haven't needed to use any product on the hair. I used Shea Moisture mousse one time but nothing really happened. Maybe a serum might add shine or something but I don't care much for those.
 My hair is 11 days today and I'm going to wash my scalp. If the curls are affected too much, I'll try a braidout and do a hot water set and see what happens. If I do, it'll be on my Insta stories.

Total cost : N3300 for two packs of hair. That's less than 10USD now.
  
Thanks for reading! Thoughts? Hit me up in the comments.

XX,
NGND


How to Get Goddess Locs For Cheap

Goddess locs took faux locs to another level. They are faux locs with curly ends and tendrils all over, like Lisa Bonet's gorgeous hair. I had never seen faux locs look so soft, so curly, so sexy...

Some time last year, I saw goddess faux locs on Megan Good and got instant I-gotta-have-it! syndrome. So I went searching. Saw it on Tyra Banks and Eva Marcille and went on to discover that a Dr Kari Will created this look. Great, where can I get it? Well, you'd have to order the loc kit from her website for $477 (Cue me getting up off my naija behind and taking a walk) and that doesn't even cover the cost of installing the hair.
It is human hair so that's understandable, but also the hair is not reusable.

If you can afford this without breaking a sweat, awesome. I'll get there one day. But if like me, you're here for the (most) inexpensive option, lookee what I did.

I used synthetic kinky hair. Only. Most people use curly-wavy hair to braid/twist first, then wrap with kinky hair. That's a great way to achieve the look, but I personally think the curly hair looks a bit too silky compared to the kinky hair it is matched with. So I thought, why not curl the kinky hair instead?

I did single braids with my own hair.

Because I wanted the hair as soft as possible, I used the same Bella Crochet Twist hair from my most realistic crochet ever, in red ombre this time. I loosened and separated the hair.

With a crochet hook I pulled a piece of hair through the root of a single braid, keeping one end longer than the other. Then I used the shorter end to wrap my hair together with the longer piece. I hope the pictures help this to make more sense. We need that longer piece to curl later.

 I wrapped up until a few cm below where my own hair stopped, then made a knot. This left some hair hanging free.
Extra tip: With faux locs of any kind, I wrap the hair looser than most people do because it looks more authentic to me. It means the hair isn't as secure and won't last as long, but I don't like keeping in styles for any longer than 3 weeks anyway.

So I completed my whole head, then curled the ends and lower 1/3 of the wrapped part with flexi rods in two different, but close sizes. Same-sized curls all over do not look as natural in my opinion.

I dipped in hot water and the next day, I took out the flexi rods.
Et voila;

I absolutely loved this hair. I did it in December last year and will do it again soon.

The curls gradually lengthen out so you can curl again if you want to. I didn't though. I liked the chill vibe.
over a week old

Taking out the locs took less than an hour. All you need to do is cut the knot, separate your hair from the synthetic hair close to the root and cut that. Then you just slide it down and out.

Cost: N3000, the price of the extensions only

Shea Moisture Yucca & Plantain Anti-Breakage Strengthening Shampoo Review

Hello people, it's been a minute.

I tried the Shea Moisture Yucca & Plantain Anti-Breakage Strengthening Shampoo and I had to review it. I don't expect much from shampoos. There's only one way to use them: to wash. I only ask that they clean my hair and scalp and not cause any problems. When a shampoo steps out of this job description, then a review is necessary. See my glowing review of this Creme of Nature shampoo.
Features
Packaging: Short, plump squeeze bottle, olive green label.
Price: N5800 - N7500, depending on where you're buying. Kinky Apothecary has the best price and it is currently on sale there for N4930. It's $10.99 on the Shea Moisture website.
Smell: Smells like a powder. Perfumey. Hard to describe but it is pleasant enough and not overpowering, at least to me.
Colour and Consistency: Cream. Pearlescent like many shampoos. Viscous enough to pour in a thin stream.
Ingredients: Free of nasties: no sulphates, parabens, phthalates, paraffin, mineral oil, DEA, petroleum, formaldehyde or propylene.
Contains: Water, Decyl Glucoside, Sodium Lauroyl Lactylate, Glycol Stearate, Guar Hydroxypropyltrimonium Chloride, Panthenol, Stearamide AMP, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter*, Adansonia Digitata Seed Oil, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Fragrance (Essential Oil Blend), Yucca Brevifolia Root Extract, Coriandrum Sativum (Coriander) Extract, Plantain (Musa Paradisiaca) Extract, Hydrolyzed Rice Protei n, Glycerin (Vegetable), Caprylhydroxamic Acid, Caprylyl Glycol, Sodium Benzoate, Potassium Sorbate, Citric Acid

My Assessment
So how did it perform? My hair has never received such a shock in its life. See, my hair was oily and detangled before I started. I saturated with water and it felt soft and normal. As soon as the shampoo touched my strands, they froze. My hair suddenly got hard and tangled; and even working in the product felt like it was going to break my hair. I was alarmed but I hoped a deep conditioner would fix the mess.
It lathered very well and rinsed out well. My scalp was clean but my hair felt like steel wool.

The consolation for me was that I didn't buy it. My sister did. I'd never have bought myself a shampoo that said "Strengthening". If my hair needs strengthening, I know where to find it. I used it because it was there and I thought why not?
My hair did not feel much better after deep conditioning. The story of that deep conditioner is one for another day.  My leave-in step started to make things a little better but it wasn't enough to fix it.

My hair hated this shampoo but to give this review a fair chance, I used it again with the exact same results.

Now I'm not saying it's a horrible shampoo, period. This was just my experience. You might use it and love it. There are mixed reviews for this shampoo. Some gave it five stars. That could be you. My sister has softer hair with finer strands and her hair didn't respond like this to it, to the best of her knowledge ( she gets her hair washed at a natural hair salon). It might be useful for people with thinner strands, limp hair, straight hair. Just a guess.

Will I repurchase?
Heavens No.

P.S: I'm probably the most inconsistent blogger ever but I deeply appreciate you guys who help me clear the cobwebs on here whenever I post again. I luuuuh you.