Bantu Knots Equal Taut High Puff

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Nine bantu knots

High puffs are like coconut oil, they make everything better.

Does your twist-out look like you rolled down a hill, then fell head first into a river? Throw it in a high puff. It’s the cure-all style.

As my hair grows I alter my methods of mastering the high puff.  To get my kinky curls taut and in formation at medium hair length, I bantu knot them. Twist-outs worked when my hair was shorter. Hair pours down my face at medium-length, so shrinkage is my friend.

I began with freshly cleansed, conditioned and blow-dried hair. This look can be created on an old style too. Need a bantu tutorial? Check out Mini Marley’s ‘Heatless Bantu Knot-Out on Dry Hair’ video.  And iknowlee has you covered with the high puff tutorial. See my completed look below.

Warning! Do not risk loosing your edges. Frequent tension on the edges can cause traction alopecia. Toia B sums up the risk nicely in a post featured on Curly Nikki.com

Products I Used

Wash | Marula Oil Rare Oil Replenishing Shampoo

Condition | Marula Oil Rare Oil Replenishing Conditioner

Moisturize| H20 and DevaCurl Set It Free Moisture

Style| DevaCurl SuperCream Coconut Curl Styler

Seal (hair+scalp)| Tropic Isle Living Lavender Jamaican Black Castor Oil

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Bantu shrinkage is great for taut curls

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The look – High Puff w/ taut curls

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Products used

 

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3.4 Years Later…

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“I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life and that is why I succeed.”

-Michael “MJ” Jordan

I am not saying that I’m Jordan, but I’m not denying it either. However, I can confirm that I fail over and over.

My hair and I have an on-off relationship, like my friends who change their Facebook status every time I sneeze.

I went back to natural 3.4 years ago. For the past three years my failing streak began around wintertime. I slack on trims, moisturizing, and bunch of other stuff that stunts growth and hair health. Why? I dedicate less time to my hair.

I fail in winter because I am…

  • wrapping up the year more and taking care of my hair less
  • celebrating holidays (esp. my burfday)
  • frustrated with winter for sucking out all of my hair’s moisture
  • adding new interests/activities to my better my life
  • not big on protective styling
  • afraid of wigs (I briefly braved on this year though)

Scissors have a way of wiping away my failures, so I booked an appointment with Felicia Leatherwood for a trim and shape. I have fresh ends for a fresh start and extra volume.

Here we go again…

 

Product Review: Trader Joe’s Tea Tree Tingle Shampoo & Conditioner

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Youtube vlogger Naptural85 mentioned Trader Joe’s Tea Tree Tingle conditioner as one of her favorites and I stored it in my memory bank.

One product at a time, that’s how I roll. As a self-diagnosed obsessive-compulsive disorder sufferer, I dislike overcrowding. Minimal products equal more organization. When a product is finished, I add another.

A few weeks ago, two product spaces became available. During my weekly standing date with Trader Joe’s, I grabbed the tea tree tingle shampoo and conditioner.

If you follow me regularly, you know that I have recently been battling dandruff. Tea tree oil acts as an anti-fungal that terminates the bacteria causing the over production of the skin cells, which creates dandruff. Tea tree shampoo and conditioner sound like a winning situation for dandruff infested scalps, right?

Trader Joe’s boasts that, “the shampoo adeptly cleans away residue from styling products; and the conditioner smoothes your hair and helps repair damage from sun and heat.” I put the products to the test.

For three weeks I washed and conditioned with the pair. The shampoo wiped out product residue, and cleansed my scalp. It left my scalp feeling dandruff-free and squeaky clean, but my hair felt dry.

I followed with the tea tree tingle conditioner. I used a generous amount of conditioner as I finger-detangled my mane in four sections. After detangling while in the shower, I placed a plastic cap over my hair to allow extra conditioning as I cleansed my body.

Before stepping out of the shower I rinsed out the conditioner. Yes! I see why it’s one of Naptural85’s favorites. The conditioner added the much-needed stripped moisture back to my stands. Below are photos of my naked curls after drying with a t-shirt. I added zero products.

If you’re curious, the ($3.99 each) price is totally worth trying the products made with natural ingredients we can identify. I will use the shampoo for deep cleaning, not for weekly shampooing.
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Product Review: Carol’s Daughter Marula Curl Therapy Collection

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As a #UltimateCurlboxMeetup team member, I received the entire Carol’s Daughter Marula Curl Therapy Collection for $Free.99. I am under no obligation to review the products, they were complimentary swag for participating in the walk.

The collection includes:

  • Marula Oil 

Each product is labeled with detailed and easy to follow “how to use” instructions. I chose to use the marula oil as a hot oil treatment and submitted to the listed instructions.

  • Gentle Cream Cleanser

After rinsing out the murula oil treatment, I applied the cleanser as directed. So far, so good.

  • Softening Hair Mask

Next up to bat, the softening hair mask. There were multiple play options, I went with the extra-deep treatment. My hair deserved bonus lovin’, I neglected it for a week.

In rule-breaker fashion, I left the softening hair mask on for 30 minutes instead of the suggested 10-15. I deep-conditioned using the towel method. I covered my conditioned hair with a plastic cap, then wrapped a towel over the cap.

Curl Tip* When hair is covered/wrapped, our body heat provides the necessary warmth that allows the hair shaft to open and the conditioner to penetrate the shaft.

Photo on 1-1-15 at 2.15 PM

These are my naked curls, after rinsing out the hair mask.

  • Diffusing & Styling Lotion

Before I allowed the next batter up to the plate, I blow-dried my mane. Finally, I re-dampened my hair by section with a spray bottle, applied the product, and twisted each section.

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Results

I consciously decided to try the collection on a i’m-doing-nothing day. The diffusing and styling lotion did not seem like it would be thick enough to tame my big hair. My twists were not layed as usual (see above).

Abiding by the listed instructions, like a good girl, I allowed the twists to air-dry over night. On the following day, I untwisted them and pulled my hair up in my go-to puff.

Guess what? The Marula Curl Therapy Collection hit a home run! Notice the Day 3 fluff on Day I. The light-weight lotion allowed my hair to have volume like whoa!  See for yourself.

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Day I Hair

The collection provided lasting moisture, shine and manageability as promised.

Will I purchase the collection once I run out? Hmmm…  it’s a bit pricey. I will likely grab the Diffusing & Styling Lotion because of the volume it allows me to achieve.

My cost-benefit analysis of the other products is not leading me toward trading in my current cleansing and conditioning products. I purchase my current cleansing and conditioning products for less and they seem to provide comparable results.

Thanks for reading!

Hugs,

Roshell

Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV), Rinse Away The Dandruff & Itchy Scalp

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These must be the new friends Drake referred to when he said, “No new friends”. Go! Away.

Before this year, I can not recall ever having an issue with dandruff. A few years ago, when I regularly visited the salon, my stylist would tell me to drink more water to avoid a dry scalp. Even then, I did not have a dandruff issue, just a dry scalp sometimes. Now knowing water’s importance to my overall health, I drink about 60oz per day, so that is not the issue. Why do I have dandruff?

Inspector Gadget to the rescue! Upon investigation I pinpointed my recent coffee addiction as a possible suspect. While getting my ends trimmed earlier this year, I asked the stylist if dandruff could be related to my coffee intake. I should tell you that I dislike coffee, so my “cup of coffee” by far contained more creamer than coffee. She said coffee and sugar could both be contributing to the problem.

After hearing that, I stopped adding creamer to my coffee. I switched to half and half, then for many reasons quit coffee at the end of August. I stepped down to a lower level drug called green tea, but I gave that up in October, yet my scalp is misbehaving again.

Time for more research! On Sunday I searched the interwebs for an answer. Dandruff is caused by an overproduction of Malassezia, a normal fungus on our scalps. At the end of this post I included links to articles I read about dandruff, its causes and remedies.

After self diagnosing myself with dandruff (possibly Eczema), not dry scalp, I decided to prescribe myself the most natural remedy. For four weeks I will complete apple cider vinegar (ACV) rinses once a week after shampooing, then following up with a deep condition.

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On Sunday I did the following…

1. Shampooed in four sections

2. Mixed one part (3 ounces) ACV with one part (3 ounces) warm water into a spray bottle

3. In sections I sprayed my scalp with the mixture (See    LiveNaturallyLove‘s  “How to do a Apple Cider Vinegar Rinse” below for a visual)

4. Let it sit on scalp for ten minutes after massaging it in

5. Rinsed out the mixture

6. Deep conditioned hair for 3o minutes

Here’s how my scalp looked after.

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Links & Video

Black Girl Long Hair

Dandruff

Dr. Oz

Kitchen Cures Your Doctor Can’t Live Without

Curly Nikki

Dandruff or Dry Scalp? – Natural Hair Care Remedies

Apple Cider Vinegar as a Hair Cleanser

Reader’s Digest

How to Get Rid of Dandruff: 11 Natural Treatments

Mayo Clinic

Dandruff

 

Devachan Salon seemed great until my curls…

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I paid Devachan Salon Culver City a visit to cash in on the Free Wash & Curl Set certificate (see below) I received months ago. Devachan washes, conditions, detangles and styles curls using its products.

Few people are allowed to touch my hair, but I decided to take one for the team and try Devachan. The possibility of hair damage seemed very slim considering the salon is all for finger detangling and anti-combs.

Upon entering, the front desk greeted me, offered a robe (in exchange for my jacket) and a glass of H2O. My stylists Stacia soon retrieved me from the waiting area. I relaxed at the wash bowl as she carefully (in tiny sections) finger detangled my hair while explaining the process and products she used in my hair.

After we finished at the princess-like canopy covered wash bowl, we went back to her chair. We previously decided to set my curls in a basic fro. I’m growing out a tapered cut from last year, so my hair is different lengths. The week before my Devachan visit ‘The Natural Hair Whisperer’ Felicia Leatherwood trimmed my ends and they were on point.

While Stacia checked on her other client who had been under the dryer, I snapped a few photos and posted one to Instagram with the caption “So far, so great”.

When Stacia returned, she placed a few metal clips in my hair to add volume while my hair dried. I appreciated that she asked which heat settings I preferred. We went with warm heat and high speed. Everything seemed great until my curls were stiff/crunchy (not fluffy) and my hair looked like blah!

I asked for more volume, so Stacia rubbed the pomade-like DevaCurl Set Up & Above near my roots. That method is not ideal for my curls. Upon further inspection there were dried white product clumps throughout my hair.

Where did we go wrong? I feel that the Devachan method did not prepare her for the variables of my kinky curls and cut combination.

Check out how I style my own curls on the kinkycurlsLA Facebook page or Youtube. I am not formally trained, but I may have been a hair stylist in my past life.

photoWash & Curl Set Certificate and Deva Curl Trial+Travel Kit Plus

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Being A Boss In Menswear-Inspired Shoes

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“Give a girl the right pair of shoes and she can conquer the world.” -Marilyn Monroe

Boss is the first word that comes to mind when I slide my feet in these menswear-inspired loafers. I kick ass and take names. Do I feel this way because I can work in them all day without worrying about my feet hurting? Not sure, but  the average flats do not have the same effect. The surge of power is cray… I feel as if I can conquer the world in them while wearing a Pampers Swaddler and Gerber onesie.

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Sophisticated Box Braid Updo (Bunning it up)

Braids have been in heavy rotation, because I decided to grow my tapered cut out (I want my hair back!).  Awkwardness of the awkward-length stage is more awkward when your hair is uneven, so braids have been my crutch.

Growing up, I believed that braids were not appropriate for sophisticated occasions, but it’s all in how you style them.  I attended a few events that required a fancy upgrade from the basic everyday top bun I wore.

The video above by Jennifer Olaleye inspired the braided bun i’m rocking below on the left. I added my own twist to the style by crossing a few braids from each side and clamping them with a thin metal barrette. Instead of wrapping the ponytail with hair (as shown in the tutorial), I used a hair tie for a more secure ponytail. I also used a rubber band to secure the final bun and a few bobby pins to hold the bun in place. Pictured on the right is an alternative to the braided bun, I created a regular bun by wrapping the hair in a circle, then pinned it in place.

Make sure that your braids are not pulling your hair, especially around the edges. Loosen hair as needed to stay alopecia free.

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I Reached Two Milestones This Week. It’s a Celebration!!!

happybirthday2Tuesday marked 1 year since the birth of kinkycurlsLA.com, yay (see the first post here)!!! And… Wednesday marked my 2 year naturalversary (see 1 year naturalversary post here)! It’s a celebration, I want a cupcake.

This journey has been awesome and I’ve learned so much. Kinkycurlsla will continue to evolve and improve as I grow and figure out how to better serve you guys. I appreciate you all. Thank you for your support! Please feel comfortable enough to share your opinions, content requests, and ask questions.

As for the hair… If you follow me on Instagram, you saw that I cut my hair on August 31. I will reveal the reasons for the cut in a Youtube video on Monday.

Have a great weekend! Take a shot for me. xoxo