Wash day files: with just two products

December 25, 2014 Naija girl next door 10 Comments

   Hello people!
Hope you're getting as much rest as I am today. I woke up this morning and had the luxury of going back to sleep. Ha! Bliss. I'm on call tomorrow though.

    Now, about wash day. Fam, it was the simplest ever and I wasn't cutting corners either, honest.
I used just two products and an oil.

The weather has been playing tricks on my hair lately: serious dryness, and even my usually docile scalp became itchy before this wash.
   My goals this wash day were moisture and a happy, calm scalp.

Product 1. Shea Moisture African Black Soap Purification Masque. It cleanses, deep conditions and specifically deals with itchy scalps. This was my second time using it. I parted my hair into sections and misted each one with water before working it into my hair and scalp. Then I covered with a plastic cap, a shower cap and a large towel to keep it toasty while I sat in bed for the 40 minutes I wanted to spend dc'ing.
Thing is, I had been scratching my scalp prior to wash day and it began smarting during the process.
By the 10-minute mark, my foot was tapping the floor.
20 minutes- I couldn't believe I had spent just 20 minutes.
30 minutes- I was squirming with discomfort.
35 minutes- I took off all the layers to let in fresh air and promptly hopped in the shower!

Rinsed with lukewarm water. The smarting stopped and my hair was oh so soft! I mean, I was running my hands through 13 months' worth of kinks attached to relaxed hair. Even my scalp stopped acting up and I was ready to forgive everything.
Dried with a towel and left it there for 15 minutes. My hair tshirt mysteriously disappeared and I wasn't ready to sacrifice any more of my beloved tshirts.
Product 2. Shea Moisture Restorative Conditioner. The combo of the masque and this conditioner... wow. My hair was lush.
 I sealed with jojoba oil. I'm still new to this oil but I like it. Not greasy, not dry, just right.
That's all.

My hair was still damp when I put it up in this bun:
Surprisingly, it hadn't dried several hours later when I took down the bun for bedtime, meaning that my hair was really retaining moisture. Goody!

The next day my coils were still soft and shiny.

Such an easy wash day, but so effective.
How was yours? Catch up with other wash day posts here. Mwaaah!


I style: Transitioning hair styles

December 22, 2014 Naija girl next door 10 Comments

Hello my people! How's it going?

 I have finally come out with this post. Basically, it's an update on all the ways I've styled my hair since like, 6-7 wash days ago.

1. Textured bun
Sometimes I dry my hair in twists but on my transitioning hair, twistouts are puffy at the roots, stringy at the bottom and me no likey.
I have only ever had one successful twistout. Ever. It was on fully relaxed hair and it was too tame, with less volume than my beloved wild and free braidouts.
    For this one I fingercombed and simply secured my hair in a bun with a claw clip.

Slicked my edges and side part with water and a bit of ecostyler gel.

2. Fluffy up-do.
Next wash day I slicked my hair back into two firm braids and tied down with a satin scarf to dry overnight.

My hair was stretched by morning; I parted into front and back halves, rolled the back and pinned the ends out of sight. Then I very loosely braided the front and tucked under. Finished with a bow clip.

3. Short wig.
I was about to have an insane week with zero time to fuss with my hair so I put in cornrows and wigged for a week.
     I also got these sassy new glasses at just about the same time and I enjoyed the combo of boyish hair and conspicuous glasses. I played up the look with a shot of androgyny- dress shirt, vest, Oxfords.

4. Curly mohawk.
Remember this wash day with the bantu knot-out?
Day 1 curls
I put up this pic on Ig:
but here's a clearer one just for you guys:
Day 2
All I did was use bobby pins to hold the sides straight while I left the top curly. Then  I gathered up the long ends especially at the back, and pinned out of sight for a short-looking mohawk (ok this was a fauxhawk).

5. Twists.
A huge favourite of mine. The ease is amazing. These days I can only wash my hair midweek if I have them in.
After day 3 the bantu knot curls went flat and I put in these twists for the rest of the week.

6. Another fauxhawk!
I was so in love with the first one,  I made another for NITC 9. This time I let a curl rest in front my forehead.

 I bought this nifty tool duo at the event:

The next day I used them instead of bobby pins. Just slide one in on each side. Finito.

7. Mohawk twists. 
I was really in a Mohawk place o. Right after the curls fell I got my tools together...
[Fruit smoothie, Family Guy playing, spray bottle of water+conditioner+oil for moisturising, tail comb (or brush) and clips for organisation. My sister's stuffed dog got involved somehow.]

 and created this look:

I braided the sides and twisted their ends, then did mini two-strand twists all the way down the middle.
This style lasted two weeks and got a lot of compliments :D

8. Wavy ponytail. 
Remember the revent wash day where I stretched with thread? I took advantage of my stretched hair and held it back in a smooth ponytail. I moisturised the ends with water and sealed with my oil mix, then used a single flexi rod for the ends.

Took it out the next day and rocked a wavy ponytail to work.

9. Messy bun.
I haven't had the time to do something fun with my hair since then. It's been in a messy bun- the kind that starts as a ponytail and then the ends get tucked under.
My colleague took this picture on saturday:

How have you styled your hair lately? What's your go-to quick style? You know I love to hear from you. :)


Wash Day Files: The All-in-one Clay Masque

December 17, 2014 Naija girl next door 18 Comments

Hey people, how's it going?

    Wash day happened on sunday evening. On Sunday morning I had the worst hair day of my life. My hair was just doing everything but what I wanted it to do.  I wasn't even trying to force it into a particular style, I just wanted to get it into ANY style it would allow. But no, hair was kicking and screaming like a big, fat baby.
I ended up having to restrain it with a scarf as a last resort.

 I really liked how it turned out: you would have thought I had it planned all along. Take that, hair.

Lately I've been experiencing shedding and breakage- I'm talking I have to sweep up hair each time I style it, not pick up hair o; sweep. Am I a sheep?
My goals this wash day were:
1. Get my hair under control before I lose it.
Special agent: bentonite clay.
     I had used it only once before, read here. I didn't have the best time with it that time but that's because I made some mistakes. What it did do was make my coils clump together, thus toning down the volume.
2. Stop the breakage and shedding.
Special agent: egg. 
It has never failed me.

 Process:  I mixed some bentonite clay with warm water to make a fluidy paste, then added honey + olive oil + sunflower oil.
I got this tip from AB of The Kink And I after my last clay experience. I had issues rinsing it out and she commented that she found that adding honey made it rinse out properly, and she also adds oils for slip, and to make it a deep conditioning masque. You know I'm all for packing several steps into one.
Lastly I added an egg.
So ya see- this was a do-it-all masque:
Cleansing- bentonite clay cleanses and detoxifies
Deep conditioning- Honey and oils
Protein treatment- Egg
Check check check. POW!

The consistency at this point though... I was like, Sandra what kind of clay soup have you made now? Lol. I added a little more clay to thicken it.
My hands were messy from the moment I started so I couldn't take pictures. So sorry.
I applied it to my hair in sections and put each away in a bantu knot before moving on to the next. I covered with a plastic cap and then a shower cap and let it be for an hour while I caught up with my blog reading.
Rinsed: with lukewarm water. It rinsed out very well, no problems.  Thanks AB :D
My hair felt goood: strong and soft and conditioned all at once. *shaky bumbum!*
Tshirt dried: 30 minutes.

Both pictures were before leave-ins. Yeeeah
Leave-ins: Shea Moisture Restorative Conditioner, sealed with Olori Deep Conditioning Treatment.

I put my hair in bantu knots and covered with a scarf.
Next morning I had happy happy hair that I pinned up and kept touching at random moments at work. Meanwhile the smell of wet earth stayed in my hair until yesterday. Can't say that I mind, my hair and I had kissed and made up.
How was your wash day? Has any tip you've ever gotten changed the game for you?
More wash day accounts on The Wash Day Experience here


wash day files- stretching with thread

December 10, 2014 Naija girl next door 20 Comments

I have missed sharing my wash days with you guys... how have you been?

   This wash day happened after two weeks in twists which I had no time to wash. Two weeks without a wash and it was gnawing at me. I had a work-free weekend and boy, was I psyched.

 I undid my twists with olive oil. Its slip makes it my favourite oil for taking down styles. I couldn't detangle properly because I was going to spend the night at Kudi's. She's my smallie.
I had a big, oily, frizzy mass when I was done. I know, I know it sounds "eww" but I was totally in my zone with all that volume to toss around.

In my mind

All that oil I left in overnight qualified as a prepoo to me so I shampooed straight away and trust me, it was needed.
Shampoo: Shea Moisture Red Tea And Babassu head-to-toe baby wash. In sections.

Extreme Dc: Shea Moisture Restorative Conditioner. I picked this up from KLP of savingourstrands: massaged in olive oil after applying the conditioner. Covered with 2 plastic caps for 2-3 hours.

Rinsed: cool water. I definitely see the appeal of the oil over conditioner. My hair was really soft to touch. Thanks KLP!

Tshirt dried for 20 minutes and then sealed my damp hair with the Olori Deep Conditioning Treatment from NITC 9. Despite its name it has a whipped-butter-to-oil consistency and the ingredients are butters and oils only, so I'd rather use it as a prepoo or sealant than a dc. By the way, it smells yummy.

I did bantu knots at first...

... then decided I didn't want curls, I wanted stretched hair. I was out of rubber thread so I used yarn this time.

The 7-horned Ram again. Lol

I took down the thread on sunday morning...

Closer view of stretched hair
   I noticed my hair wasn't feeling soft and moisturised as it was before I threaded. I don't know exactly what caused this.
Could be that the yarn sapped the moisture, or the SM conditioner is not as potent as a dc, or my hair revolted against the sealant.
That's the issue with using more than one new product/method at a time- you won't know the weak link. Sigh.
I did a big, rough bun and went on my way.

On monday I did a twist and tuck, same on tuesday. Today I'm rocking a wavy ponytail.  More on how I did that in my coming 'Hairstyles' post (yes, it's still on its way).

How was your wash day? Join the Wash Day Experience here



Hair in Naija- How it went down at NITC 9

December 06, 2014 Naija girl next door 20 Comments

How late is this post??? Eeek!
[Noelle Collins you were right to laugh when I hoped I might have a little more time in O&G]

Two weeks ago I was at Naturals In The City 9, at The Social Place in VI, Lagos. I'll just jump the gun and tell you it was wonderful.
I got in with my time-wasting sis in tow, we got our passes and passed by Natural Nigerian, in a pretty floral midi shift dress. She pointed us toward the lecture area. I saw Ekene of The Kink And I at the entrance. She's so fine, and she's taller in person than she looks in pictures! I stood on tiptoe to hug her. Lol

I got in during the first talk on length retention, next was Ade of Locitude and she schooled us on locs and length. She's funny too. Last was fitness expert Adura_O; I learnt what not to eat at certain mealtimes (eg no carbs at night).

    On to The Gallery where all the vendors had their stuff displayed. I was greeted by a beautiful display from Aweni.

       Next stop was Olori (the cosmetics brand, not affiliated with the retailer olori.com.ng as the CEO Toyin explained). My sister bought the deep conditioning treatment and Toyin the CEO was so nice, she gave us a smaller tub for free and graciously posed for pictures.

My sister and I with our Olori bag
I met Chichi and her sister, and we got talking for quite a while. They were so nice.

We were joined by the beautiful Dabs of Naijahaircangrow. Great to meet her again.

Dabs :)
We ran into my sister's friend Lotanna, The poshintng (check out her post on the event). She's been natural 4 years and it was her first meet-up. Loved her shoes!

Then I was at the Tunmise Naturals table where I met Bunmi rocking a bomb twist 'do.
By this time I had gotten used to my "please can I take your picture?" chant. So when she cheekily said "no!" I was caught off guard and we both started laughing...

I bought two packs of marley hair from her stand.

I got talking with Yoyin who's natural and Yewande who's relaxed, both so warm.

 Yoyin's hair was in an awesome curly style and I just had to ask how she did it... She said it was a twistout, she watches Naptural85's YouTube vids and recreates them. I've never seen a twistout look like this...

I was now on my own, heading over to the AfricanNaturalistas table when a head of amazing, purple hair passed by and I almost had neck spasm staring...

Shirley said she used Manic Panic hair colour which she had to order. It comes in crazy beautiful colours. She had to bleach her hair first to get the colour this intense.
From the AN table I bought a bottle of jojoba oil. Never used this before.

African Naturalistas
Omozo of O Naturals passed by with her hair in tame-looking twists. I loved her red hair and told her so, and she loosened one of her twists so I could see it better. She's amazing. And girrrrl, there is nothing tame about her hair. It is big and on fire.

I had the pleasure of seeing again some more awesome people I met at The Savvy and Chic Garden party-
Uzo of Don't Touch The Hair was there...
...as well as Simi of Those Natural African Curls

I got to the Beautifully Nappy stand and met the pretty Rachael. I thought she was wearing a twistout but it was actually a-couple-weeks-old twists. Rachael said her hair doesn't stand up on end like most naturals' hair tend to, no matter what she does it hangs down. Diversity eh?
I bombarded her with pictures :p :p :p

I met Tomiwa and Teju, beautiful souls. Tomiwa with the high puff and radiant smile;

 Teju the model ;) who just big chopped a week before. Power!
I want her shoes

Snap snap
I bought a very convenient hair accessory from the next stand- more in a later post.

Namaste Organics was there too. I was curious about their aloe water spray but I have just about enough products right now so I took down their contact details for later.

I met Nigerian Fittie, she's @bunmilosingit on Twitter. She's a fitness expert who went from a size 16 to a size 8 so she knows what she's talking about!
Her hair had been blown out before the event and she said she was feeling so good bouncing her hair around her shoulders, until the heat and humidity got to her and what happened? *Chorus* Shrinkage.
It was so fun talking with her.

Meanwhile I had seen Barbara of Barbara &1923 from a distance, with her puff commanding respect. I had to pay homage. She was so kind to let me take pics from all angles. Lovely to see her again.

Puff so big, it deserves its own Instagram

Famzing the puff
This awesome ombre hair caught my eye-
Deola of Omoge Mura told me she bleached the ends to achieve this.

I spotted Zainab and Lamide of The Spot :D

I'm so glad I didn't miss it. The hair community is such a positive atmosphere, everyone is supportive and kind and open and helpful.
I chilled for a bit with AB before I left. Kudos to her and to Natural Nigerian who has been engineering these meet-ups for years.
Were you there? What did you think about it?

*pictures without my watermark were gotten from naturalnigerian.com, thekinkandi.wordpress.com and theposhintng.wordpress.com