How's everyone doing! Hope all is well! The challenge is well on it's way. I got a relaxer treatment done last night(update coming), I should have at least an inch to an inch and half of growth and so should you if you are on the challenge and have not relaxed your hair for at least 8 weeks...
I'm here with a quick post on styling. It's an area that we tend to ignore while focusing on moisturizing, sealing and deep conditioning but I tell you, it can make or mar your hair journey. Below are a few tips I have practiced myself on styling that you might find useful especially when you are stretching a relaxer and dealing with different hair textures.
1. I never comb my hair completely dry! So it's 8 am and you are getting dressed for work, you finish with your body, face, now it's your hair's turn. Take a minute to lightly spray your hair especially at the roots from a distance say 3/4 inches away so that the spray (can be a detangler or water/oil or glycerin mix) falls on your hair like mist-this is especially pertinent if you want to avoid your hair from frizzing up and this you should do before you comb so you help the hair glide through the comb better. Combing dry hair even if it's freshly relaxed is a No No. However if you are using a moisture based moisturizer that leaves your hair noticeably moist after you use it, then that's good enough.
2.When detangling and my hair gets stuck, I never force the comb through and I advice that you don't. It's absolutely normal for your comb to get stuck even after moisturizing and sealing, it's also normal for there to be hair left on the comb after combing but if you yank the comb through while combing especially when the comb is stuck, you have pulled out perfectly healthy hair and caused unnecessary breakage. Rather than yank the comb through when you are stuck, spritz the tangled area lightly, hold the hair just before that area with your left hand and use your right hand to gently comb through the tangles. Comb of choice? A wide tooth comb always.
3. Don't mount on gel day after day even if you use a non-alcoholic gel. I learnt this while I had my crotchet extensions in for two weeks. When I sleeked my edges with gel and the next day it needed re-sleeking and I used gel, nearing the end of the first week, my edges were not hard and dry because the gel is alcohol free but they were gooey and gummed together! The base where my braid started had already started gathering dirt... now if I kept that up for a month like some people do when they have extensions in, my edges would have been in real danger! Because they would be clogged from gathered dirt and sweat making my scalp unable to breathe. No breathing means breakage and when that happens to your edges, the dreaded receding hairline is upon you! How I remedy gel use is, when I want to reapply gel on already gelled hair, I spritz the already applied gel with water and dab it away gently with a towel until the hair is not gummy before I apply a new coat of gel. This I do normally within a two days interval.
4. Rubber bands are an absolute NO!
If you need to hold your hair in place in any way and you can't find anything to use, please leave it alone or plait the tips and tuck away or use a bobby pin but not rubber bands, they are a No because they are really elastic, thin and can easily tangle with your hair! Has your hair ever been in a fight with an elastic band? If yes, you know it's never pretty and you are bound to loose quite some hair!
5. Drastically reduce the use of heat! This can sound cliche but it's one tip that if you adhere to, will benefit your hair greatly! Using heat tools like flat irons is like ironing, it's not called a flat iron for nothing! You need to know how to use them and even then, use them sparingly. When you use a normal iron, you have to keep the iron moving, if you let the iron sit too long on what you are ironing, the heat will sear through the item and burn it. Sometimes, so you prevent mistakenly burning a dress, you sprinkle a little water on the dress or use an ironing spray...well it's no different with your hair! When you use heat, endeavor to coat your hair( not with water in this case) but with a heat protectant or oil to prevent burns and heat damage. Please freshly coat each section of hair just before you use the heat tool.
6. Naturals, try keeping your hair stretched because when it's stretched, it tangles less and is easier to comb and detangle (which should always be done while the hair is damp). I was told this by Nibi Lawson of the Kinky Apothecary blog. To help stretch your hair, you can use some thread from the roots to tips, you can do big twists or braids or you can use this really cool hair tool some of you may have heard of called curl formers;
We will have it stocked at the hub this month.
7.Styling products are NOT hair care products...what I mean is that please don't let products like heat protectants, hair glazes/edge control, anti frizz serums take the place of hair moisturizers and oil based sealants. If you are in a hurry in the morning and you just want to get out the door so you grab a styling product like a frizz serum to put your hair in place, please understand that it will do just that-put your hair in place, it will not give it any moisture or nutients/vitamins except of course it contains them. So my advice is when you come back or sometime during the day/week when you can spare some time, take out a few minutes to section your hair into small sections and pamper it with a moisturizer and an oil sealant.
With that I have come to the end of this post. I must say that the points I have made are not foreign however we need to be constantly reminded of them because again they can make or mar our chances of retaining length in 2014.
Do you have any styling guides for 2014, feel free to share below...
PS; Today was just SURREAL!! Your home girl was on the set of Moments with Mo, Nigeria's first syndicated talk show.
I was there with bloggers Nibi from Kinky Apothecary and Dami of Neriah Naturals and we talked about- HAIR!! It was such a fun experience and I feel blessed and honored to have been chosen and its all thanks to YOU!! Yes YOU who told a friend who told her friend who told her sister, who told her mum, who kept on telling EVERYBODY!! I am so grateful and thank you all for your continued support!!! ( I have to do a giveaway SOON)!