Straight hair + trim

I straightened my hair 2 weeks ago on the 9th, at 3 weeks 5 days post. By then, I had gone for 5 months without using heat on my hair. I also trimmed it on that same day. My last trim was about 6 months ago.

I’ll try and not make this post too wordy so here are the pics I took.

Started off with this bird's nest

Started off with this bird’s nest

I’d been wearing my hair in a bun for the first 2 weeks of my relaxer stretch. Normally I’d rock a curly do at that point of my stretch but my braid outs had been major fails, and you know when all else fails – BUN IT 😀

pre-detangling

pre-detangling/pre-wash

Shampooed

Shampooed

See what shampoo does to my hair? Tangles all the way. I used Enliven shampoo which I totally love because it gets all the gunk out. I think its important to do a clarifying wash if you plan on straightening your hair because you don’t want the heat to cake dirt and product residue onto your strands.

DC mix

Keeping it simple with my deep conditioning mix. I’ve been using olive oil a lot nowadays, along with almond oil because with the temperatures dropping, coconut oil is no fun to use in its solid state. Am also using honey a lot more (instead of glycerin) because I have copious amounts of the stuff in the house.

Deep conditioner application

Deep conditioner application

coated

Scarf

You know how I do it, a plastic bag then a scarf on top … and then I go about my Saturday morning chores or workout.

Slightly airdried after deep conditioning

Slightly airdried after deep conditioning

Blow dried

Blow dried

no vol

The back left section is straightened while the right is not. See how much volume has been lost in the process? Why again do I love straight hair?

Halfway done. Textured roots at 3 wks post

Halfway done. Textured roots at 3 wks post

Breakage

Breakage

I can’t even explain how this happened. Whats more irritating is how they just stick up! I had to use some product to lay them down.

My camera broke a while back so am yet to take a proper length-check pic but here’s one I snapped using my phone.

random shot

My hair is trimmed at this point. I was careful not to snip off a lot of hair like last time and I think I did okay. I’ve gained a little length, not quite the 3 inches I was going for but well,…this is still progress regardless. I took another pic a few days later hoping for more length but yea, it was still the same 😀

Random shot 2

And yes, I live in loungewear 😀 Hoodies, tanks, sweatpants, yoga pants. That’s my look right now.

Henna update – July

henna powder

Another long overdue post, but here it is finally. I hennad my hair on 24th of last month. My last similar treatment was… i don’t remember when :/ although I did an egg treatment about 4 weeks ago. Both henna and eggs are used as strengthening treatments.

I get asked what I use to make my henna paste and my answer is always the same. Plain warm water.

water & henna

There are several things one can add to henna to make the paste but I personally like to keep it simple. When I first started hennaing my hair, I would do a henna gloss which is basically adding conditioner, and sometimes oil, to the paste. I later decided to stick with just water.

paste2

consistency

After making the henna paste, I kept it in an air tight container till the very end of the day. The instructions on the pack say to let the dye release for 4-6 hours but I think I let mine sit for a while longer. At round 7pm that evening, after detangling and sectioning my hair I applied the henna.

pre henna

pre henna

henna paste

henna head

I had the henna in my hair till 4am (9hrs!). Well that was unintentional but whats a girl to do? I was both sleepy and feeling very lazy. Couldn’t master the will to go and rinse my hair and before I knew it, it was bedtime 😀 . (Just so you know, the pack says to leave it on for 3-4hrs).

After rinsing my hair, I did a deep conditioning treatment for probably 2 or 3hrs. I was running late so all I did was pull my hair back into a bun and that was my style for the day.

My 1 week post wash

After getting a relaxer, I don’t wash my hair till I get to 2 weeks post. I love how silky freshly relaxed hair is and I just like to keep it like that for a while longer. However, due to the relaxer burns I had experienced, washing my hair early seemed like a good idea especially since I didn’t have any open wounds/sores on my scalp and wasn’t in pain. The scabs were still there like a freakish reminder of what had happened. I just wanted to get them off.

So, on my first post relaxer wash, I used Enliven shampoo and Enliven conditioner. I didn’t do a deep conditioning treatment because I was in a rush – Monday morning. I let my hair airdry in a bun for the day. When I got home that evening, I checked my scalp and it was back to normal. No scabs, just regular feeling smooth scalp. I didn’t have any bumps or anything of the sort.

So i went to the Salon…

My last salon visit was on the 1st of March 2013 (almost 1 year 4 months ago). You all know I do my hair myself at home so on this visit I was only going to get my eyebrows done (threading)- been trying to grow them out for a while now. I get them done at the same place I used to get my hair done.

Turns out that salon is no more. They moved and I didn’t even know. Serves me right for being gone for so long :/ In its place was a clothes shop. I thought of calling my old hairdresser when I got there but I didn’t even have his contacts…lost them when my phone was stolen last year! So as I was standing there trying to figure my next move, I heard someone rushing in my direction and shock shock, it was him. Jimmy my old hairdresser!

He led me to (another) nearby salon and told me that he now worked there (I didn’t even get the name of the salon…next time). He was being very elusive when I asked him where the other guys moved to. Can’t blame him.

So of course he asked why I no longer go to him to do my hair – he could see I was freshly relaxed and couldn’t keep his hands out of my hair, all the while I was silently praying that he wouldn’t feel the relaxer burn scabs 😮

He said my hair was longer and that I should go in for a rollerset. I was rocking a 3 day old braidout that he clearly didn’t like. He asked what i had done to it….If I had just washed it and left it at that. I think he was just hating 😀 I wasn’t offended. He just really really wanted to do my hair, and he does a good job, I’ll give him that. Am now toying with the idea of letting him do my hair because i really miss getting rollersets and sitting under a dryer 🙂

Anyway, he recommended someone who could do my eyebrows. I was antsy about letting someone new do them because one lady did it wrong one time and for weeks I walked around looking like I was in a permanent state of shock!

Relaxer burns!

Remember how I mentioned in my last post that I felt a mild burning sensation during the relaxing session and didn’t rinse off the relaxer immediately? Yea. Bad BAD idea. The result? Relaxer burns. I haven’t had to deal with that before.

Am being dramatic here 😀 I actually didn’t know I had relaxer burns till 2 days after relaxing my hair. My scalp didn’t hurt and I probably wouldn’t have noticed them if I hadn’t been touching my scalp. So there I was, gently running my fingers on my scalp when I touched what felt like product residue. My first thought? “I didn’t rinse off all the deep conditioner!” I instantly grabbed my phone, took a pic but there wasn’t much to see really.

Relaxer burn

My hair strands were basically ‘glued’ to each other and i also had a scab at the back of my head, and due to my touching it (thinking it was product residue), it ended up looking somewhat flaky, like dandruff. Again, I was in no pain. I generally have a low threshold for pain but now am thinking my scalp is adapting to this harshness am putting it through. No?

I later found out that I had another scab at the crown of my head and while trying to relieve an itch in another spot, what did I find? Another scab. Can someone say panic? I just kept telling myself that I wasn’t in pain, my hair wasn’t falling out, I wasn’t developing any bald spots – so everything was going to be okay.

i’ve heard that some people’s hair tends to stick to their scalp where the relaxer burn has occured. This wasn’t the case for me (which is why i was in no pain i guess). Mine was a mild relaxer burn. If your hair ‘glues’ itself to your scalp. Use vaseline to loosen it painlessly.

Lesson to my panic-stricken self? Be very careful when dealing with relaxers or chemicals in general. Don’t leave them on for too long!

Relaxer update – July

Hi guys 🙂 long time right? Hope you’re all doing well.

I relaxed my hair on the 14th of last month at 14 weeks 6 days post but am just going to round that off to 15 weeks post. Am currently 4 weeks 4 days post so this post is super late. As usual, I used the ORS relaxer kit in normal which now costs Ksh.580! That’s Ksh.14 up from last time 😦 . Call me frugal. I actually bought the kit once I hit 13 weeks because I had planned to do my hair that day but I just couldn’t find the time to do it.

Relaxer kit

This time round I got a free bonnet inside. Its been years since I last wore one of these to bed (am a scarf-kind-of-girl). I haven’t used it yet but am happy that it’s a size Large and the elastic isn’t flimsy. It’ll serve me well 😀

Hair bonnet

Bonnet

I basically did the same things I always do on relaxer days, i.e. based my scalp, hairline and ears with Vaseline to prevent relaxer burns, (I also applied Vaseline to the length of my hair to keep it from getting over processed), clipped my hair up, applied the relaxer to my new growth, smoothed it out, rinsed off the relaxer, neutralized it and then finally did a deep conditioning treatment.

Before relaxing. Can you see my new growth?

Before relaxing. Can you see my new growth?

I self-relaxed my hair at a comfortable pace; finished the application step early and then took my time with the smoothing step. I think I went overboard with that though. I remember feeling a mild burning sensation and thinking, “I really should rinse this off now”, but no, I kept going. After a while, I hopped into the shower. I managed to rinse off the relaxer and do one shampoo wash before running out of water (due to water rationing in my area). Since that was unexpected and I had no hot water with me, I finished off my wash with cold water.

Texture shot

Texture shot

deep conditioning time

deep conditioning time

After rinsing off the deeep conditioner, i towel blotted my hair, applied some leave-in conditioner and some oil, then finally plaited it into 2 braids.

That was it for my relaxer day.