My Winter Regimen and Monthly Length Check

Since mastering how to manage my hair I have gotten way more organized. I try to create a regimen seasonally to cater to my hair’s needs and goals. I also try to keeps things simple to ensure health and promote growth. Last year my hair grew from ear to neck length. This year my goal is to grow my hair to APL which is about 10 inches in the back when straightened, which is about shoulder length curly. Shrinkage is not a big deal to me.

Currently my hair’s length is 9 inches in back, 7.4 inches on the side, and 5 inches in back. December 2010 my hair was cut into a bob with the longest in front and shortest an upside down “U” shape in back. The front of my hair has always seemed to have grown fastest and compared to last months measurements (7.5, 6.5, 3.5) its seems that it really does. On average hair grows .5 inches a month so in order to retain length you have to protect the ends. They are the oldest which require the most moisture and gentle care.  Some say hair grows slower in winter and with age. Some also say hair grows faster in warm months. I have to research this more but I plan to track my hair monthly to see what the case is for me. My hair grew approximately 1.5 inches in the front and back and .9 of an inch on the side. I said approximately because I think I may have measured incorrectly last month.

My Winter Regimen

Before Straightening and Trim:

  • Clarifying Shampoo
  • Protein Treatment
  • Moisturizing Deep Treatment

After Straightening:

  • Heat Protecting Serum
  • Penetrating and Heat Protecting Oils

2-4 Weeks after Straightening:

  • Sulfate/Silcone-free Shampoo
  • Protein Deep Condition

Curly Hair:

  • Clarifying Shampoo monthly
  • Deep Condition weekly (alternating between protein and moisturizing)
  • Gentle Shampoo (sulfate free/silicone-free), Ayurvedic Mask, or ACV Rinse  weekly
  • Cleansing/Detangling Conditioner 2-4 times a week
  • Detangle w/ Shower Comb and Denman Brush followed by fine tooth comb
  • Moisturizing Leave In
  • Creamy or Buttery Styler
  • Oil or Butter Sealant
  • Essential Oil Scalp Massages as needed or as Pre-Shampoo

Styles:

  • Pinned Up, Banana Clip, Ponytail, Occasionally Loose when straight
  • Twistouts, French Braids, Protective Styles (wigs or  weaves), silky turban or hat (satin bonnet underneath) when curly

Sleeping:

  • Satin Bonnet or Silk Scarf
  • Satin Pillowcases

Other:

  • monthly length checks
  • pictures of length check after trim and return to curly
  • occasional henna treatments
  • trims every 12 weeks – 90 days

You can see what products I use in my previous post of my staples. What works for my hair and my hair type may not work for you. However you can use this as an outline to create your regimen and choose products appropriate for the needs of your hair. The most important thing is making sure your hair is moisturized and measures are taken to retain length if growth is your goal. When you focus on growth and obsessing over other people’s hair you tend to lose touch with reality and in my experience it usually ends up with a hair cut or overdue trim which could have been avoided. Love and learn the hair you have, the results will lead to happy and healthy hair!

———————-

What is your winter regimen? What goals do you have for your hair this year?

Advertisements

Curl of the Day: Kelis and Her Big Chop

 

Since starting her career singer, Kelis has been known for her big hair. A few years ago she chopped it all off and has been rocking it like this ever since. Her sides were originally shaved so thats why it has this tapered shape.  This is how my hair looked after my BC (well chemo chop), too bad I only wore it out once. This style is so easy to achieve. I would shampoo (before I knew about co-washing), condition, and leave in a conditioner or curl cream. This look is beautiful and I would like to encourage all my lovely BC curls to rock their hair don’t cover it up, if I could do it all again I definitely would!

Amazing Twist Out + No Gel = Pure Shock!

Hey Curls!

I recently purchased  Qhemet Biologics Aethiopika Hydrate & Twist Butter. I was hesitant to use it because I didn’t think it would provide any sort of hold. All of my successful twistouts in the past have been with various gels. I’m  holding out on a full review of the Qhemet products until I try the butter a few more times and I try their conditioner and oil serum. They have a sale coming up soon so I plan to splurge. I already love love love the Amla and Olive Heavy Cream and the Burdock Root Butter Cream. This line smells so frickin’ yummy and are light so it’s not overpowering.

But back to this twistout… It’s super soft and shiny. My hair is definitely moisturized.  I washed with Jane Carter’s Moisture Nourishing Shampoo, deep conditioned with Jane Carter’s Nutrient Replenishing Conditioner with my heat cap, applied Kimmytube’s leave in recipe (a mix of Kinky Curly Knot Today, aloe vera juice, coconut oil, and castor oil) and a Roux Fermodyl 619 Leave-in treatment, I then dug out a dime sized amount of the butter rubbed it together with wet hands and hair and applied to 8 flat twists. I sealed the ends with castor oil and rolled with satin rollers. I wore the twists under my favorite purple hat yesterday and took them down just now with my oil mix (olive, coconut, avocado, jojoba oil) on my hands and viola…a million steps later and some minor fluffing I have this beautiful flat twistout. No frizz & defined curls (even in back)!

I plan to try this again to make sure it’s not some freak case. I will co-wash and use Kinky Curly Knot Today as my leave in, twist with the butter, and seal my ends with castor oil. I also want to try it with bantu knots my favorite for twist outs. The for final confirmation I will do a 2 strand bantu twist out. I really want to try it with Qhemet’s Amla and Olive Heavy Cream or the Moringa Tree Conditioning Ghee but I am trying to control my product junkie habits until this sale.

Overall I am impressed and think I have found a winter staple and styler. Now I have to keep my fingers crossed that it will hold  up over night since it is a soft hold.  I will keep you all posted…until then… stay tuned and stay curly!

XOXO

Curl of the Day: Jill Scott’s Fab Cornrows

Check this out curls…

137093764-nl

Miss Jill Scott rocked this fab look at the premiere of “Why Did I Get Married Too”! Check out tips and products her stylist Felicia M. Leatherwood (total sweetheart) recommends over on Essence.

137093764-nl

I like to apply a light leave in like Jane Carter’s Revitalizing Leave In Spray and follow braiding with an oil based hair butter to keep things smooth like Carol’s Daughter Loc Butter.  I’ve been eyeing B.A.S.K.’s Java Bean and Honey Hair Balm to replace CD’s butter. Leatherwood also stated she uses Bohyme Brazilian Wave my favorite curly weave of all time. These extensions blend so well with natural hair especially 3c and 4a tpyes.

Curl of the Day: Raven’s TWA

Today’s curl is Raven-Symone. She did a big chop some months ago and her hair is progressing beautifully. Some entertainment blogs may opposed so we often she her wigging it out. Either way I love this girl. She also lost weight and looking so healthy and happy. She is such a great role model, not just to young girls but naturals too! Society should love our curls as much as we do but until then who cares what they say, love you!

Updates, Updates and More Updates!

Hey curls!!!!

If you follow me on twitter (@SuiteAngelique or @DiamondsCurls) then you know I was on a hunt for a new stylist. There is nothing wrong with my old one but I was on a budget and the location of my current stylist is one reason why her prices are a bit higher. All that said I decided to stick with what I know since she was the last person to cut my hair, which brings me to the cut. I know you are thinking cut….yes I said cut.  Fall of 2010 my hair started shedding like crazy. Instead of going to a doc I tried various home remedies to find nothing was working. My hair got to the longest ever in a wash and go style the last thing on my mind was a cut. Well after my hair thinned out and I had no edges there was no choice. It’s nothing worse than holding on to thin see through hair. So December 2010 I had it cut into a short bob. I also went to the doctor and found out my iron levels were really low and taking a couple of iron pills a day was the solution.

The pills kicked in and new hair was growing. You can sort of see the little sprouts of hair less than an inch growing in around my edges. It was too thin to do any curly styles so after a week I washed my hair, flat twisted it, and wore a half wig from January to May. I kept it uber moisterized with Qhemet Biologics Burdock Root Butter cream and the Amla and Olive Heavy Cream. Those products are the same, just different consistencies. My inner PJ just had to have both. As my hair grew back it was thicker and tighter curls than before and I think that was because of the Qhemet and iron pills.

During the summer I was fed up with the wigs. Threw them away and started playing around with different curly styles. I love pomps whether my hair is straight or curly so similar to my pomp and banana clip style I had a pomp and two french braids. I finally had a bit of hangtime even though I kept the ends tucked to protect them from the elements. I also wore my little tam/beret out too with a satin bonnet underneath it.

 

I tend to stick with one style until I wear it out so I decided to switch it up. After one more cut in June 2011 to even things out wearing curly styles had more success for me. After I copied a style from Syesha Mercado. I know you remeber her from American Idol.

I simple did a wash n go with the trusty Eco Styler gel and bobby pinned my hair up. This style worked perfect because the longest part of my hair was the front and the sides were long enough too. The back of my hair was originally cut into an upside down U shape but that was nothing a glob of gel couldn’t hold in place.

December came and I was overdue for a trim. No matter how hard you try wearing wash and go’s is no good for your ends. I had single strand knots and spilt ends all over. My new super thick hair was so hard to detangle even with a shower comb. So I went in for a trim and couldn’t believe how much my hair had grown. Even my stylist, Melanie was asking what I was using and what vitamins I was taking.

 

I measured my hair before and after my trim and I was in shock. There was no change. This is why I love Melanie, she understands that trim does not mean cut. She also uses the best products. She shampooed me with Elucence. She also gives the best scalp massages asking if it itches when she is done which she knows is not possible. She used Kenra’s Moisturizing conditioner and sat me under the dryer for 20 minutes or so, used One and  Only Argan Oil Treatment and Biosilk Silk Therapy to blow me out and flat-ironed. She only used ceramics without me even asking! My hair was super silky to the point it looked and felt relaxed.

Over three weeks later my hair is still holding up. Normally I can’t go longer than a week with out have the itchies and flakes. I kept my hair moisturized with Chi Silk Infusion if I felt like my hair was going to poof and if I decided to bump my ends with my flat iron. I also used avocado (my new fav) and grape seed oil which are both great heat protectants with smoke points at 450°. I used coconut oil with lavender essential oil and massaged it on my scalp and edges whenever they felt dry.

I did flat-iron my hair prior to a random mini photo shoot in the snow. My hair looked great either way. I wasn’t weighed down and very few flakes. (my hair only flakes when it’s straight…weird I know)

As of my last length check December 23, 2011 my hair was 7.5 inches in the front, 6.5 inches on the side, and 3.5 inches in back. This Saturday is my next monthly length check and it looks like my hair is on track for  .5 inch increase. I’m usually too lazy to track my hair growth every month but this year I am just to prove a point that healthy hair grows. I also plan to only were my hair in stretched styles this year because I still have a few random single knots and only the front is long enough for search and destroy sessions.

Well there you have it, my official long over due update. Stay tuned for this month’s length check. I will be washing my hair tonight for a curly hair shoot. I am going to attempt a bantu twist out and pin it up the same as the Syesha look or a cute turban/scarf look.

XOXO and Fab Curls!

2011 Staple Products

Hi there!

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season and new year. I’ve been preparing for this year the past few weeks setting goals in all areas of my life and making my plans for the year but most importantly for this blog. It’s time to take it to the next level and I just want to give thanks for those that continue to stay on this journey with me. I can’t believe I am over 7 years natural. I have learned so much on my journey and stalking others. I have also tried almost every product under the sun. I have complied a list of my staple products of 2011. One thing I have noticed is that I have learned to keep it simple and have also learned what products work amazingly on my hair. Now what works for me may not work for you but this basic lineup should help you to create a healthy regimen and stash. Here is my list:

My 2011 Staple Products:  

Pre-Poo:

Extra Virgin Olive or Coconut Oil

(I simple just apply a gennerous amount of oil to my hair and scalp for 15-20 minutes before shampooing. Sometimes I use a heat cap but most of the time I just left it sit before hitting the shower)

Shampoo:

Suave Daily Clarifying Shampoo

(I use this before protein treatments and this year will start using it monthly since I use a lot of heavy oils, butters, and gels)

Jane Carter Moisture Nourishing Shampoo

(I use this to remove silcones from my hair after straightening and occasionally for my weekly shampoo)

Kinky Curly Come Clean Shampoo

(This is my all time favorite. It’s sulfate free and great for weekly shampooing. It’s were gentle and leaves hair squeaky clean.)

Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) Rinse

(I use this as needed sometimes after a deep treatment or when my hair’s pH balence is off. It’s also great for cleaning the scalp with braids or weave, even takes the fake shine off of synthetic extensions and wigs)

Co-wash:

Trader Joe’s  Nourish Spa or Tea Tree Tingle

Suave Juicy Green Apple or any silicone free scent

Aussie Moist

Herbal Essence Hello Hydration

Leave In Conditioners/Moisturizers:

Kinky Curly Knot Today

Qhemet Biologics Amla & Olive Heavy Cream

Deep Conditioners:

Aubrey Organics Honeysuckle Rose

(This is the ultimate moisturizing deep treatment. I use it weekly alternating with the GBP.)

Aubrey Organics GBP Lavender Ylang Ylang or Rosemary Mint

(I use this after straightening and alternating weekly AOHR.)

KeraCare Humecto Creme Conditioner

(I use this after protein treatments to bring the moisture balence back.)

Shea Moisture Organic Raw Shea Butter Deep Treatment Masque

(I use this weekly if I want a little variation from the AOHR.)

Stylers:

Eco Styler Gel

Kinky Curly Curling Custard

Organic Root Stimulator Lock and Twist Creme Gel

Oil and Butters:

Avocado, Coconut, Grape seed, and Castor oils

Lavender,Rosemary, and Peppermint essential oils

Shea Butter

Other:

ApHogee 2 Step Protein Treatment

( I use this before straightening. It is also good to use before and after braids and weaves)

ApHogee Balancing Moisturizer

Chi Silk Infusion

(I use this for heat protection, frizz, and to avoid curl reversion when my hair is straight.)

Biotin

Iron

TJs B Complex

TJ’s Pre-natal

Tools:

Jilbere Shower Comb

Denman Brush

Fine Tooth Comb

Chi Turbo Flat Iron

Shower caps, Satin Bonnets, Silk Scraves

Bobby Pins, Hair Combs, Clips, etc

Roots Only applicator bottle

 What products are you loving? Feel free to comment and share!!!!!!!