POP UP POST // Hairspiration – Wine or Chocolate?

So I’ve been toying with the idea of changing my hair color for my 26th birthday (it’s in one month! Whoop Whoop!) And for some reason I’ve been drawn to rich wine colors….

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But THEN earlier this week, Krystal (y’all already know…), from over at The Feisty Houseput up a post that included her wedding hair plans (yes she’s getting MARRIED! I can’t wait to see those wedding pictures!)  And when she mentioned jet black-to-chocolate ombre!!! BAYBEE! *swoon*  Just….behold.

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I absolutely love both color options so this is gonna be a toughy!

I’m hoping my hair stylist will like one of these ideas too and hook me AWL the way up!  Shout out to Amanda B.! lol

What do you guys think of these options? Yay? Nay? Let me know!

Hope you all have a LOVELY weekend 🙂

Love and God Bless,

– T

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Naturally T // Best Braid Removal Regimen EVER!

Happy Tuesday guys….Vacation’s over *moment of silence*……But that’s ok.  I love my job and to be honest….I kinda missed getting dressed up and going to work…kinda lol.

In other news!  After a little over 2 months, the Senegalese twists are OUT!  And I am definitely excited about being able to style my curly natural mane once again!

Now for those of you who have had braids before in your life, you know that the worst part of the process is the removal of the braids and trying to detangle those dreaded (in both senses of the word) knots that form at your roots, full of dirt and shed hair that hasn’t gotten the chance to be…shed… ( ._.) lol

So…every time I remove my braids, the detangling process always seems to be THEE worst.  I get it done, and even though I always feel like I MUST be bald by the end of it all…I never really am.  But this time around, I decided to do some hardcore research. So I put out the question on Instagram and received some recommendations (shout out to Louri & Camille Rose Naturals!).  Sadly, my local Target in the DMV didn’t have the Camille Rose deep conditioner in stock (womp womp) so I couldn’t get that 😦  But I improvised.  Also, on a lot of forums I saw recommendations for Kinky-Curly Knot Today, which is a product that I’ve heard A LOT about in the past but for some reason….forgot about(?) or just never really felt the need to have in my life….until now!  BUT I’m getting ahead of myself….

After doing my research, I set off on a trip to Target and picked up my weapons of mass knot destruction.

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Since Camille Rose Naturals recommended doing a deep conditioner, I did just that.  I couldn’t find the product they recommended so I picked up the Dark & Lovely Au Naturale Anti-Breakage Strength Restoring Conditioner (in retrospect…I probably should have picked up the Dark & Lovely Au Naturale Knot Out Conditioner….but there’s always next time).  First, after I cut off about 5 inches off the ends of all of my braids, I rinsed my braids off in the shower and did an ACV (Apple Cider Vinegar) rinse on my scalp.  Then after massaging my scalp with the ACV mixture, I washed that off, towel-dried my hair, and then applied the DL Au Naturale conditioner to the roots of my hair/my new growth and covered my braids with a plastic cap then the shiny conditioning cap.  I left that on for about…1-2 hours (I actually can’t remember now…).  Then I removed the caps and started the unbraiding process.

I divided my braids into four sections and started unbraiding each section.  With each braid, I started undoing them from the very ends.  Once the braid was removed, I took about a dime-sized amount of the Kinky-Curly Knot Today and applied it to the root/new growth/gigantic knot of dirt and shed hair….and when I tell you that the know MELTED through the knots! NOT even exaggerating!  I didn’t even have to use the wide-toothed comb until I completed half of each section! It was like….some type of miracle product! It is absolutely amazing and I will recommend it to anyone who’s look for a great detangler.  It made the process sooo painless and easy, and I lost very little hair this time around.  I barely had to use my old faithful Mane ‘n’ Tail Detangler, actually.  I only sprayed that to the really stubborn knots that needed a little extra help.

After I unbraided half of each section, I twisted my hair up and just went to sleep.  Then the next day I went to my lovely hairdresser Amanda B., and she hooked my hair AWL the way up!  I got my hair deep conditioned, blown-out, and trimmed.  I ❤ Amanda.  She always makes my hair look AMAZING!

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And that’s that!  I am sooooo so happy to have found a good regiment for removing my braids without losing too much hair. And yeah….definitely gonna go back to Target and stock up on a few bottles of Kinky-Curly Knot Today since Target is currently having a sale (YES GIRL A SALE!) I may even pick up a jar of the Curling Custard to try a wash and go this weekend…maybe…

Oh Target…how I love thee….

Until next time….

Love and God Bless,

– T

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Naturally T // T’s Senegalese Twists: Updated Tips & Maintenance

As most of you may know by now, I have my summertime Senegalese Twists in once again!  Last year I got them installed around this time as well and I loved the ease and versatility.  I plan to keep them in for about the same duration (~2 months) and am looking forward to being creative with styles during this summer as I have quite a few different trips planned (beach, Toronto for my cousin’s wedding, and lots more hopefully!)

I have made a few adjustments to how I am caring for my Senegalese Twists (more in the way of products being used, but same general regimen) so check out the YouTube video below for more info if you’re interested!

Love and God Bless,

– T

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Naturally T // Twist & Curl w/ Karen’s Body Beautiful, Camille Rose Naturals, & Oyin Handmade

One of my favorite (and easy) styles to do with my natural hair is the twist & curl.  It always turns out fab and lasts for the ENTIRE week, of course becoming less defined and a bit bigger/frizzier throughout the week (and at that point I get pretty creative with my use of bobby pins…or just put my hair up into my classic cinnabonish bun).

After I condition and cleanse my hair, I wrap my hair up in a towel for a few minutes and let the styling begin!

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I apply the Karen’s Body Beautiful Sweet Ambrosia Leave-In Conditioner (which smells heavenly, btw) all over my hair.  Then I use the Camille Rose Naturals Almond Jai Twisting Butter and top with Oyin Handmade’s Burnt Sugar Pomade (oh the smell of cupcakes in the morning…lol), apply to each section, and twist my hair up, securing the ends with these light pink perm rods that I purchased from Sally’s Beauty Supply.

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Not sure how many twists I do but….yeah.  Then I allow my hair to air-dry for at least 6-8 hours or overnight while I sleep.  Then in the morning, I undo the twists, separate to the desired fulness and voila!

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I really like this style because it really does last me most of the week.  When I did this style it took me from Sabbath through the next Friday when I washed my hair once again.

And to top it all off, Camille Rose Naturals featured me on their Instagram page!  How cool is that! 🙂

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Have you tried any of the products that I used to achieve this style? Purchased them all from my local Target in the DMV btw.  What are your go-to products and styles for your natural or transitioning hair?  I’d love to hear it and hopefully try out some new things soon….like those Beautiful Textures products.  There’s a product there that’s supposed to be good for wash-n-goes, and with most of my relaxed ends trimmed off, I think this summer I might try that out! We shall see…lol.

Until next time…

Love and God Bless,

– T

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Naturally T // Condition + Cleanse

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This is definitely a long awaited post, I think.  Ever since starting my natural hair journey back in December 2012, I have been trying a number of different products and techniques.  At first, it was in an effort to help my hair blend better into one look/texture during the initial transition phase, and that worked great.  But of course, as the predominance of natural hair vs. relaxed ends became more noticeable, those things changed.  And that means, update time for you my lovely readers!

In this post I’ll be sharing the products that I am currently LOVING for conditioning and cleansing my hair (no worries, I’ll be sharing other products that I’m using in later posts, I promise!)

Now the reason that I say Condition + Cleanse is because that’s exactly what I do….in that order.  I’ve found that doing my deep conditioning in the form of a pre-poo of sorts is more time-efficient and also more beneficial for my hair personally.  But I’m sorta getting ahead of myself…so let’s get to the GOOD stuff, shall we!

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I usually start by using a half strength mix of Apple Cider Vinegar (I just use the generic brand from Safeway that I got while visiting the DMV) and water in a spray bottle to apply to my scalp.  ACV is GREAT for ridding the scalp of impurities and dandruff while also easing dry, itchy scalp, with which I sometimes have issues.  After separating my hair into 4 – 5 sections, I spray the mixture directly onto my scalp section by section, massaging it in to not only help with loosening any residue/product buildup on my scalp, but the massaging also helps to stimulate hair growth as well.

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Next, I apply my miracle worker product, the Mane ‘n Tail Detangler (purchased from Sally’s) to each section of hair, saturating it enough to finger detangle but not so much that my hair is dripping wet.  When I tell you that this detangler is purely amazing….I ain’t neva lied!  It is definitely one of my holy grail products that I will forever continue to purchase because it definitely makes detangling my hair after a week of bunning a WHOLE lot easier.  Once that is completed, I then apply my deep conditioner/pre-poo, and the product I use for this purpose is the Organic Root Stimulator (ORS) Replenishing Conditioner (purchased from Target).  This product can be used as a pre-poo, regular rinse-out conditioner, and/or deep conditioner.  It provides amazing slip and ALWAYS leaves my hair feeling incredibly soft and manageable.  I apply the ORS conditioner to my damp, finger-detangled hair section by section, then use my wide-toothed comb (pic coming up) to detangle.  I then two strand twist each section, put on a conditioning cap, and do housework/work for work (lol) before getting into the shower to do the hair washing.

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As far as cleansers go, I feel like I’ve tried them all: Sulfate-containing, sulfate-free, cleansing conditioners; you name it, I’ve probably tried it lol.  But what has kept my hair in consistently great shape has been sticking to using a sulfate-free shampoo on a weekly basis and then a clarifying (sulfate-containing but moisturizing formula) shampoo maybe once a month (or for when I get lazy and skip washing my hair for a couple of weeks and need some serious cleansing…don’t judge me! lol).  The sulfate-free shampoo that I use every single week is the Shea Moisture Raw Shea Butter Moisture Retention Shampoo w/ Sea Kelp & Argan Oil for Dry, Damaged Hair (purchased from Target).  It is SUCH an amazing product!  Even if I use it on its own, I don’t feel like I need a protein or deep conditioning treatment.  My hair is left soft and extremely manageable without feeling squeaky clean.  It definitely doesn’t clarify my hair completely though, so when I’m looking for that in particular, I go to my Aussie Moist Shampoo (purchased from Wegman’s when I randomly needed a clarifying conditioner and this was on sale; best purchase ever; can also be found at Target).  Definitely gets my hair super clean but somehow without feeling stripped.  It’s amazing!  The other shampoo in the pic (on the far left) is another Shea Moisture Shampoo (Tahitian Noni & Monoi Smooth & Repair Conditioning Shampoo w/ Keratin, Peptides, and Botanical Extracts) that I bought because it was on sale at Target, I’d seen pretty good reviews on YouTube for this new collection, and the ingredient list looks legit!  Definitely great ingredients for strengthening and smoothing hair.  I’ll keep you guys posted regarding my thoughts on this product.

I do usually shampoo my hair in sections (the same 4- 5 that I started out pre-pooing) because it makes it more manageable to handle and shower detangle.

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While in the shower, I detangle my freshly washed hair with my wide-toothed shower comb (far right) that I got from Sally’s.  Sometimes I use my Denman brush (also purchased from Sally’s I believe…) instead depending on the mood I’m in *shrug* lol.  Also depending on what my hair needs, I may apply the ApHogee Keratin 2-minute Reconstructor(you guessed it, Sally’s) after cleansing (and while I shower, shave, and what not) if my hair has been shedding more than normal, has recently been straightened, or I just feel so inclined.  You can leave it on the hair for up to 5 minutes for an intense protein treatment.  I’ve used this product for years and I truly believe this is one of the many things that has helped me avoid having to do a big chop in this process of transitioning to natural hair.

Once my hair has been rinsed, I go on to style!  A braid & curl out or twist & curl out seems to be usually be my initial style of choice these days, if I have time to dry my hair overnight.  I promise I’ll share the info on what products and techniques I use for that style very soon!

In the meantime, I hope you enjoyed reading this very detailed post!  Let me know if you’ve tried any of the products I talked about or if there are certain conditioners or cleansers that you absolutely can’t live without.  I’d love to try out some new things soon!

Until next time,

Love and God Bless,

– T

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