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Thursday, December 31, 2009

CONDITIONER SEARCH...




As salaamu alaikum & Hello ladies,

Well it's that time again.  Time for some new conditioner's.  I am looking for a good leave-in conditioner as well as a good Deep conditioner.

I am in need of a few suggestions.  I am looking for both over the counter ( to buy locally) and purchase over internet.  Either, one is fine.  So, if any of you ladies have any suggestions.  Please  share them with us here at " AuNaturale".  Can't wait to here from you .  Take care ( smiles)

Sunday, December 27, 2009

HOMEMADE HOTOIL TREATMENTS...



Do you cry about un-lively dry strands of hair after every wash by expensive chemical products? Well! Then bid them good bye and try these natural homemade hot oil treatment to add extra care for your hair that promises shine, health and extra bounce. Discover the natural world of homemade hair care products. They are simple to make and it takes only few minutes to apply.

Rosemary Hot Oil Treatment

Ingredients: 1/2 cup of dried rosemary leaves & 1/2 cup soybean oil
Directions: Combine ingredients and heat until warm. Strain the ingredients through a fine strainer or cheesecloth to remove all of the access leaves. Coat the entire head and hair with the mixture, working it through evenly to the end of the strands. Then wrap the hair in plastic and later in a warm towel. For best results leave the oil mixture on hair for 15 minutes or longer. Wash your hair with mild shampoo until oil is completely removed.

Curry Leaves Hot oil Treatment
Ingredients : Coconut oil & 2 strands of curry leaves
Directions: Combine the ingredients and heat it until warm. After the oil has cooled to normal temperature crush the leaves and use a strainer to remove all the access leaves. Apply it as described above. It works well for dry and discoloured hair.

Ginger Hot Oil Treatment
Ingredients: Ginger root
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Directions: Squeeze ginger root to obtain one tablespoon of juice. Mix all ingredients. Apply to scalp and let dry before shampooing. For best results repeat three times a week.


Jojoba Hot Oil Treatment
Ingredients : Bottle of pure Olive Oil or Jojoba Oil & Bottle of  favorite mild shampoo or conditioner
Directions: Bring pan of water to a rolling boil and remove from heat. Place glass bottle containing pure olive oil in pan. Leave it for five minutes. While olive oil is heating; gently shampoo tresses and towel dry. Try to remove all excess moisture from strands before applying olive oil. Apply olive oil directly onto hair strands from root to ends avoiding the scalp area. Cover hair with plastic cap and sit under heated dryer or conditioning cap for 10-15 minutes. Rinse hair with warm water. Later shampoo and to remove extra oil to complete your homemade hot oil treatment.

Soybean Hot Oil Treatment
Ingredients: 1/2 cup soybean oil
8 drops oil of sandalwood
8 drops oil of lavender
8 drops oil geranium
Directions: Mix all the ingredients and warm the oil to a comfortable temperature. Apply the mixture to damp hair. Wrap hair in plastic wrap and apply a hot towel for 20 minutes. Shampoo your hair and rinse well.

                                                                           ENJOY!!!







































Wednesday, December 23, 2009

CALENDULA FOR YOUR HAIR & SKIN...



Commonly known as "pot marigold," calendula is an exceptionally versatile herb native to the Mediterranean. For centuries, it has actively been grown in gardens to use as food and for its healing properties. Identified by its bright orange and yellow petals which hold medicinal properties, it should not be confused with the garden variety marigold.

The name calendula is derived from the plant's tendency to bloom according to the calendar, either once a month or with the new moon. This annual flourishes in cool, temperate climates and grows to a height of 9-20 inches.

The flavenoids present in the calendula flower and its inherent anti-inflammatory, astringent, antifungal, and antiseptic properties result in an ideal topical agent. It can be applied to the skin to treat boils, rashes, sunburn, chafed skin, insect bites, and other skin irritations. The properties of calendula make it an attractive herb for treating and soothing the scalp.

Calendula is usually found as dried flowers or essential oil. It can be used to create tinctures, ointments, lotions, infused oils, and body butters to name a few. When mixed with oils like olive oil, the effects of calendula are enhanced. Products containing calendula are readily available at health food stores and online - or create your own using one of these recipes!

Pack a glass jar with dried calendula flowersCover packed flowers with olive oilCover with a tight lidStore the jar in a dark cupboard and shake well every day for two weeksAfter two weeks, strain oil into a clean glass jar or bottleAdd Vitamin E oil as a natural preservativeApply directly to the skin, scalp, or hair Test the oil on a small area to test for allergic reactions 6 ounces calendula infused oil (above)2 ounces sweet almond oil3 ounces shea butter2 ounces cocoa butterMix ingredients in a small pot on very low heatOnce the ingredients have melted, simmer for 20 minutes while stirring regularlyCarefully pour into plastic or glass jars and allow to solidifyApply directly to the skin, scalp, or hair Store in the refrigerator to lengthen the shelf life.

Increase or decrease ingredients for the desired consistency 6 ounces calendula infused oil (above)2 ounces jojoba oil10-15 drops of rosemary essential oil10-15 drops tea tree essential oil10-15 drops sage essential oilMix ingredients together in a spouted applicator bottleShake well prior to useApply directly to the scalp.  Use this oil on the scalp to sooth conditions and combat dandruff.

                                                                                                                 Enjoy!!!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

MORE ON HAIR CONDTIONING...

There many factors influencing the way our hair looks, among them regular taking care of our hair and conditioning. Hairs are considered to be skin appendages, as well as nails, sebaceous and sweat glands. A grown up man has got approximately 5 million hairs altogether. There are about 100 000 hairs of the scalp and their thickness goes from 40 to 800 per cm2. There are different types of hair, i.e.: lanugo, or downy hair, and the hair of a grown up person.

How is our hair built?

The hair root of an individual hair forms a tiny but long tunnel (called a follicle) which reaches into the lower layers of the skin. The hair is divided into a shaft: the portion growing above the skin and the hair roots anchored in inside the follicle. At the end of the tiny tunnel, there is a hair papilla. The papilla is the centre of growth for the hair; it is where nutrients are taken up from the blood. Another part of the hair is its hair bulb which contains pigments. The content of the tubular hair determines its colour. The surface of the tubular structure is scale-like, covered with tiny plates. Each hair has got three layers: interior, cortical and hair shell.

Melanocyte, a pigment-producing cell in the hair determines their colour. The pigment that melanocytes make is called melanin. The major determinant of colour is not the number but rather the activity of the melanocytes. Melanin production takes place in unique organelles (tiny structures within the cell) known as melanosomes. Darkly pigmented skin, hair and eyes have melanosomes that contain more melananin.

The hair is built in a tubular way and consists primarily of a substance called keratin. This is scleroproteid with the variety of amino acids which form polypeptide chains. In keratin there are such amino acids as: arginine, cystine, glycine, tyrosine, fenyloalanine, lysine, and other amino acids.

How does the hair grow?

Hair does not contain nerves or blood, but instead is rooted in living skin, which is how a uniform structure is formed.

Hair does not grow continuously. There are three phases of hair life. The transitory phase which lasts approximately 2 to 4 weeks, and a hair turns loose from the papilla and moves slowly upward in the hair follicle. During the resting phase, which lasts from 2 to 4 months, hair has reached the sebaceous gland and is ready to fall out, thus making room for his successor. The growth phase is the phase during which hair sits firmly in the hair papilla and, dependent upon genetic factors, matures during its 2 to 7 years of growth, becoming longer and longer. The majority of hair on a healthy grown up person’s scalp is in the growth phase while only 10% of hair is in the resting phase.

On the scalp 85% of hair should be in the growth phase.

The lifespan of hair on a head may vary from four to even twenty five years. The hair may be 2 meters long then. This hair is also the quickest growing hair of a human body. The hair grows 0.35mm a day on average. The phase of growth of a man’s beard lasts approximately 40 weeks. The cycle of eyelashes’ growth varies from 3 to 5 months. For babies, in their first half a year of life, the resting phase of hair cycle is much longer than for adults. Downy hairs are only a few centimetres long before they start falling out, which is quite normal. The physiological norm for the hair loss of an average person is about 100 hairs per twenty-four hours. If we lose more, this may be a sign of some malfunctioning of our body. The state of hair is important in diagnosis of many diseases.

What can influence the condition of our hair?

There are numerous important factors which influence the state of our hair, its thickness, the right growth, as well as its physiological composition and biochemical.

Nourishing elements

These are very important.

The way a person’s hair looks provides strong evidence on his malnutrition or/and under nourishment. It has been proved that after two weeks of following a non-protein diet, there are signs of disappearing of hair bulbs and thinning of the hair follicles.

Amino acids- are necessary to make the proper hair growth possible. While doing some experiments on animals, it has been proved that the most dangerous is the deficiency of cystine. In turn, the deficiency of metionin causes dryness and brittleness of hair. The deficiency of tryptophan causes alopecia, while the deficiency of cystein makes the hair lose the gloss.

Carbohydrates - give hair the proper amount of energy which is important for hair metabolism. It is because hair in follicles is one of the fastest growing parts of human body.

Vitamins - Hair is very sensitive to the deficits of all vitamins but in particular to the deficiency of Vitamin A. Avitaminosis / hypovitaminosis A may cause particular ocular and dermal changes. The most important ocular changes are: the night blindness and changes of cornea. As for the dermal changes we may find one called hyperkeratosis. The hair of a sick person becomes weak, dry and brittle.
 Microelements- The deficiency of microelements has got a great impact on the hair growth. The most important microelements are: zinc, iron and copper.

 The deficiency of zinc may cause, among many others symptoms, hyperkeratosis of skin and hair loss. The 24-hour requirement for zinc is 2mg. This element is very difficult to assimilate. This means that only 1/6 part of zinc brought with food gets assimilated by our body. Zinc also is easily extracted with faeces, urine and sweat. Therefore even if the amount of zinc (10-15mg) in our diet is sufficient in the majority of cases, sometimes there are cases of deficiency of this element in our country.

The deficiency of copper may lead to some structural changes and discolouration. Pathological changes in hairs in so-called Menkes complex, which is genetically conditioned defect of transportation of copper in the alimentary tract, are good examples of such changes.

The deficiency of iron may cause the alopecia. The example of such a state is sideropenia, which causes an extensive alopecia of women.

In many cases microelements get inside hair through the blood, firstly into its bulb and then into its root and further. Arsenic and selenium are examples of such microelements. Other elements can also get inside hair through the keratin, for example lead. Lead remains mainly on the outer parts of hair, though. Intoxication with lead, arsenic and selenium may also cause alopecia.

Hormonal agents

They have very a strong impact on hair growth. The example of such may be the activity of testosterone, one of the androgenic hormones. Androgens stimulate the growth of hair but the head whereas on the scalp, androgens remain responsible for the male type of alopecia. Alopecia is genetically conditioned. When a man reaches his sexual maturity, testosterone causes thinning of hair on his head in specific places. Hair bulb starts disappearing.

Stress

It has got an enormous effect on the way our hair look. It may cause the extensiveness of hair loss and development of alopecia.

Natural adornment

Hair protects from the destructive thermal factors and UVA/UVB. However, its active role is not very important, which is quite the reverse to the psychosocial importance of hair in human life. It is because hair is the natural adornment of man. Its appearance has got a huge impact not only on our general feeling but also on our relations with other people.

We need to remember that taking care of our hair by using chemical preparation, we should also provide our body with appropriate nutrition and balanced diet because this is the best way we can take care of our health.

If our hair tends to fall out, the reasons for this should be traced in the dysfunction of inner organs, e.g. any kind of hormonal disorder or food deficiency. In some cases, after consulting a doctor first, we can use special vitamin or microelement preparation as a supplement of our diet.

It is very important to notice that examining our hair, in many cases may help us to put the diagnosis about the general health condition of our body.

Examining of hair

Owing to different scientific methods we are able to find out the degree of hair loss, as well as to check the hair shaft under the electron or light microscope and to examine the state of a hair root, which enables to calculate the percentage of hair growth, involution and rest phases.

Absorptive spectrophotometry defines the amount of microelements (e.g. Mg, Zn, Fe) in human hair which allows to discover the deficiency of metals necessary for the hair growth and defines the level of the body poisoning, for instance by lead. WHO and International Agency for the Protection of Environment have chosen human hair as a distinctive element to evaluate the influence of toxic substances on living organisms.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

AVOCADO OIL FOR HOT OIL HAIR TREATMENT...

Using avocado oil for hot-oil hair treatments is a good way to nourish your hair, repair split ends, and add shine. Avocado oil is available at some mainstream grocery stores, natural food stores, and online.

Pricing

Avocado oil is one of the most expensive cooking oils, in some cases costing as much as $10 for 8 ounces as of December 2009. However, purchasing a bottle is worth the investment. As of December 2009, pre-made hot-oil treatments cost between $1 and $2 for a small tube, and usually aren't made with avocado oil.

Addressing Scalp Problems

Hot-oil treatments help decrease dandruff and scales associated with eczema and psoriasis. The oil loosens the flakes and helps to remove them more easily than brushing alone. One hot-oil treatment a week is usually all that is needed.

Don't Neglect the Extras

For added benefits, combine avocado oil with another oil such as olive oil or vitamin E oil and several drops of one or more essential oils to add fragrance. Tea tree oil is great for scalp problems such as dandruff, and lavender essential oil can soothe redness and irritation.

How to Use

Mix the avocado oil and other essential oils you plan to use in a plastic bag. Place the bag in a cup of hot water for one minute to warm. Massage the hot oil into your scalp and leave it on for five to10 minutes.

Warning

Make sure you wash your hair thoroughly following a hot-oil treatment. Remaining residue will weigh your hair down and make it difficult to style. Sometimes it might be necessary to wash your hair twice to remove all residue.

Tell me , what kinds of oils do you ladies use on your hair for hot oil treatments ?.  Share with us here at AuNaturale.  Until next time, take care and Enjoy!!!

Friday, December 11, 2009

10 HONEST THINGS ABOUT MYSELF...



As salaamu alaikum & Hello ladies,

I have been tagged by the beautiful and inspiring Chocolate Orchid.  Below I have posted the rules to recieve this great reward :

1. Post the award on your blog.



2. Present this award to others whose blogs you find brilliant in content and/or design, or those who have encouraged you.


3. Tell those people they've been awarded HONEST SCRAP, inform them of these guidelines.


4. Share "Ten Honest things" about yourself.

SO HERE IT IS, 10 HONEST THINGS ABOUT ME

1. I am a very spiritual person, who loves serving her lord.

2. I would love to live in another country and study abroad. (perferably a Islaamic country)

3.  I really love being married and being a mother.

4.  I hate the site of band aids, yes band aids ( not sure why, but it is serious), lol

5.  I love, love a cleaaan house and it must smell good.

6.  I really enjoy cooking, love it, love it, love it.

7.  I love meeting new people.

8.  I am really not a fan of working out , BUT I try (lol)

9.  I really enjoy learning, and reading books.

10.  I am seriously afraid of heights.

YOU'VE BEEN TAGGED:

1.  Slipsitches
2.  The Afrolicsious Dynasty
3.  Natural Hair...Natural Products

ENJOY!!!

Friday, December 4, 2009

ENOUGH IS ENOUGH: THESE BLACK FEMALE EXECS ARE PROUD OF NATURAL HAIR...

As salaamu alaikum & Hello ladies, I read this article and found it quite interesting.  Below I've posted the article.  Tell me what you ladies think ?. 

Black women's hairstyles--and the debate over natural hair versus straightened hair--are a hot topic again after a Glamour magazine staffer sparked a firestorm of controversy with her public comments about Afros.

The staffer, who was presenting the "rules" of female corporate attire to a group of New York women lawyers that included black women, said Afros were an improper corporate hairstyle. DiversityInc decided to ask two successful black-female executives who wear their hair in natural styles about the issue.






"We seem to be the only women who ... are always required to change the naturalness of who we are because of what other people think of us," says Marcia Brown, vice provost, student affairs and community outreach for Rutgers University, Newark.

There's a standard in society that says women who are presentable at minimum and beautiful at maximum are women whose hair blows and hangs ... It's a European standard," adds Brown, who since the 1960s has worn her hair both natural and straight and currently wears her hair in locks, which are commonly called dreadlocks.







To straighten curly hair or not is a continuous question for black women in particular and women of color in general. DiversityInc covered this topic in its March 2006 issue with the article "To Perm or Not to Perm." Because white executives are the majority population throughout corporate America, standards of dress and acceptable hairstyles have mirrored white styles. That there are so few senior-executive black women who wear their hair in an Afro or other natural hairstyle is telling of the problem.


The issue exploded on the Internet again after the Glamour magazine staffer made the presentation at New York law firm Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (CGSH). Since then, Glamour's editor-in-chief and CGSH's managing partner have issued apologies, plus the staffer resigned. CGSH's Women's Working Group, which includes a few black-female lawyers, organized a lunch in June and invited the unnamed Glamour staffer to give a presentation on women's corporate attire. The first slide in the presentation featured a black-female executive wearing an Afro, to which the Glamour staffer reportedly said Afros were a "Glamour Don't." She added, "Those political hairstyles really have to go."

Melissa Theodore, 27, currently wears her hair in braids. She has an older sister who is a corporate lawyer and straightened her Afro when she interviewed. After being hired, she wore her hair in braids, too.

I personally never had concerns," says Theodore, who is a staff accountant, international tax services at Ernst & Young .

But while Theodore did not have concerns, her family did. She was warned by her parents and sister that wearing an Afro or braids might hurt more than help her prospects in corporate America.

"You see [Afros and other natural hairstyles], but probably not as often as relaxed hair," says Theodore about black-female executive hairstyles.







She adds that the only political statement made by an Afro is one of individuality



Some [black] women wear their hair natural because they want to be close to their roots and closer to how God made them," says Theodore. "I don't think anyone should concern themselves with it at all. In the workplace, the job you do is [most important]."

Brown adds that rather than considering the black-woman executive who wears an Afro "political," white senior executives should consider that black executive an independent thinker. She says those women are proud and not afraid to speak up and contribute honestly because they are not second-guessing whether their views are being filtered.

I wear my hair in locks because it's my natural hair and it makes a statement that I am anti any standard but my own on what is beautiful," says Brown.

For people who dismiss the societal prejudice that motivates black women to straighten their hair as irrelevant, Brown says consider famous black women in entertainment. Few if any wear their hair in a natural state, including U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. Brown points out that she can't remember an "Oprah Winfrey Show" featuring natural hairstyles on makeover shows that included black women. Even the television show "Girl Friends," which airs on the CW network, doesn't include a black woman with naturally curly hair. Black women do not have an equivalent to Michael Jordan, who made it fashionable for black men to shave their heads.

If women like Oprah and women who have the mantle can't show the broad range of black women's hairstyles, that's where the problem is ... the statement is that if you're a dark woman with nappy hair, you can't be a woman in the board room, running the company, or someone considered good-looking," says Brown.

Brown, who is also a lawyer, did straighten her curly hair while working for a telecom company. But "there was a stark change in how people reacted to me when I changed it to locks." She felt the stares.

"[Black hairstyles that are natural] should not force you to be placed in a position where you are not considered worthy or considered not beautiful," says Brown. "When it denies opportunity, it's time to say, 'Enough is enough.

Share with us here at "AuNaturale " what are your feelings on this subject ?.  Until next time , Enjoy and take care (smile).

Thursday, November 19, 2009

PRODUCT REVIEW...





As salaamu alaikum & Hello ladies,  As some of you may know being natural often comes with changing our products from time to time.  Once deciding that co-washes with conditioner only would be best for my hair I began to use VO5 Moisture Milks strawberries & cream conditioner for my co-washes.

However, from time to time I found that it wasn't working for my hair like I wanted it to.  So, I began a slight product change which included the following:

VO5 Herbal escapes "Kiwi lime squeeze" clarifying conditioner :  This I absolutely love, 1) The price is right down my alley for a girl who has a large family, and who remains on a budget.  2)  The ingredients in this conditioner are great.  3) And It really gets the job done, it cleans my hair wonderfully , leaving my hair as well as my scalp feeling really moisturize.  This is a keeper !

Aussie Moist Conditioner:  Now this I like as well once using it , 1) my hair felt really good and moisturized as well.  2) The price isn't that bad , not as light on the pockets as VO5 but not bad.  3)  BUT, I really don't like the ingredients it includes " cones".  I do not like cones for my hair .  I've decided to go cone free.  In my opinion cones are not good for our hair.  So, would I buy or use this product again,  Absolutely not ( due to the "cones")

Suave Humectant conditioner : This I also absolutely love as well.  In fact this is the product I am currently using for my weekly co-washes.  1) The ingredients are great.  2) I love, love, love the way my hair and scalp feels after using this product, the product is very thick and rich and leaves my hair feeling very moisturized each and every time I use it , it has yet to let me down.  3)  The price is also very resonable. 

So, there you have it an update on the latest products I use or have used for my co-washes.  If any of you ladies have any that you would like to share with us here at "AuNaturale" please do so we would love to here from you.

Until next time, take care and Enjoy !!!

Friday, November 13, 2009

WHIPPED SHEA BUTTER TAKE 2...



As salaamu alaikum & Hello ladies, I wanted to give a special thanks to Angie R.  Who responded to my desperate plea for help in making whipped shea butter ( lol).  She provided AuNaturale with two really great recipes in making whipped shea butter.  I made it using recipe 2 which included  using a hand mixer.  And my results were amazing.  Here is what she said:

1. If you are using a blender, it's important to melt the shea butter. Don't microwave, it makes the end result grainy in texture. Boil a pot of water then place the container of shea butter in the water, like a double boiler. Stir until completely melted, add oil(s) and then pour into blender. Blend until it thickens some, pour into your final container to cool and solidifies. The end result will be smooth.



2. You will need a hand mixer. Melt shea butter as above and add your oil. Get a bowl, fill it with ice cubes to make a ice water bath. Sit the melted container of shea butter in the ice water bath. Be careful! Mix the melted shea butter while it's sitting in the ice water. This method will give the shea butter that whipped, frothy texture -- my fav
 
Thanks again Angie R. ( smiles)
 
                                                                                                             ENJOY!!!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

WHIPPED SHEA BUTTER RESULTS...



As salaamu alaikum & Hello ladies, Quick and brief update on the results at my first try at making whipped shea butter.  Well, I must say it did'nt quite turn out the way I hoped.  It wasn't creamy and as smooth as I wanted , you know similar to the texture of whip cream.  What did happen is that the texture did soften to a small degree.  Where as when applying, it wasn't as clumpy in texture.  I am thinking it could be do to the lack of materials that I 've noticed other ladies used when making their whipped shea.  I pretty much  used and followed directions as suggested.   BUT, I did not use an electric  hand mixer I used a blender.  So, ladies if any of you guys have any tips or recipes  on making whipped shea butter , or  know of a video of a you tuber making whipped  shea butter share them with us here at 'AuNaturale".  Until next time, take care.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

UNCLE FUNKY'S DAUGHTER " CURLY MAGIC" UPDATE...


Hello & As salaamu alaikum all, Well I've recieved my " CURLY MAGIC" from Uncle Funky's Daughter and I must say it works really, really well.  It does just as it states.  It tames the Frizz, Elogates the curls, and makes the curls pop, I mean really pop.  Also, to my delight I had no shrinkage at all.  I've only applied it once and I am now on day two hair and my curls are still fresh to death.  I simply re-wet my hair added a little leave in conditioner/ mixed with a bit of evoo.  And that is it!!!!.  I have , CURLS, CURLS, CURLS.  Now, once applying, after the product dried my hair appeared to be a bit stiff, but all I did was simply run my finger over it a few times and it softend right up and it is still soft.  Soooo , Would I continue to by this , YES INDEED !.  I am thinking about trying their other product called " GOOD HAIR".  If so I will gladly keep you guys posted.   

I also plan to make my own " WHIPPED SHEA BUTTER " for the very first time.  I am super excitied.  If any of you ladies have made your own whipped shea butter.  Or have tips for making whipped shea butter .  Please share them with us here at " AuNaturale".  I will update you guys once completing.  So stay tuned and take care ( smiles).

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

UPDATE...


Hello and As salaamu alaikum ladies, Well as some of you may have noticed my posting has slowed down a bit.  I've decided to probably just do 1 post per month or so .  Just to simply be more involved in my worship, which means more to me than anything I can imagine.  You know in life there are some who have things in a order as to which they are most important , and my worship happens to be on the very, very, very top of my list.  I also will be changing my hair regime a bit once again ( LOL).  I had been having difficulity finding a really good product to define my 3b 3c curls.  I had started using the Eco styler olive oil styling gel, well that is ok and will work from time to time ( mixed with plenty of leave in conditioner and shea butter)  I really dont like my hair to be hard AT ALL , so when using this I must layer my products, with the above to maintain the softness.  I've also come across what sounds to be my  "finally found it product".  I have heard sooooo much about this product from a few you tubers who use this product to help to enhance there curls.  So along I go to find this product along with the site in which to purchase.  Now , this product is a bit expensive but the jar is also a good size and the ingredients sound amazing. 

This product is  " Uncle funky's daughter " ,curly magic (gotta love the name).  Below I will add the site.  I will keep you guys posted on my results.  If any of you ladies have used or heard of this product , please share your feelings and or results with us.  Until next time, take care ( smiles).
http://www.unclefunkysdaughter.com/

Sunday, October 18, 2009

MORE ON PROTEIN AND MOISTURE BALANCING...




Hair Breakage Solutions

Do you find random hairs in your comb, on your shirt, on your sinks and on your bathroom floors? Are you finding hair everywhere but securely upon your head? What is going on? You may have a problem with hair breakage. For black hair in particular, hair breakage is typically



The Fine Art of Protein and Moisture Balancing for Black Hair Care


a result of an imbalance of important forces within the hair strand: moisture and protein levels.
 
Moisture
 
Hair needs water to maintain its elasticity, or ability to stretch. Since water is the ultimate moisturizer, water-based products are best for really getting the greatest moisture benefit.



Moisturizers are simply products that are water-based and nourish your hair deep within the strand. Products with moisturizing properties tend to be your conditioners and other specific moisturizer sprays or creams. Moisturizers may also contain large amounts of protein, but these protein based moisturizers do not have the moisturizing benefit that moisture-based moisturizers have. Check labels to gauge protein content. Good moisturizers will not contain cheap, filler ingredients like petrolatum, mineral oil, or lanolin. Avoid products that claim moisturizing benefits and contain these ingredients. There is nothing moisturizing about them! Petrolatum and mineral oil are sealants that seal out the precious moisture our hair needs.



Sealing in your Moisturizers:
 
Our hair naturally contains moisture, but because our hair is also naturally porous, keeping the moisture inside is a difficult task. Providing additional sources of outside moisture, or external moisture supplementation, is a must for black hair care. Water molecules and moisture from these supplemental moisturizing products easily pass into the hair shaft, but they pass out just as easily. The moisture you apply needs to held in by something. Oil.



Natural oils like jojoba, olive, carrot, or coconut oil seem to work best.
 
A light coating of oil after your daily moisturizer will help seal the moisture inside. Oils are made of large molecules. These molecules are too large to absorbed by the hair strand. Applying oils to the hair and scalp will coat them and trap the moisture that is inside on the inside and






the moisture that is outside on the outside. The key is to use the oil to "lock in the moisture." If you use oils without a moisturizer or before one, the oil will seal the moisture out of the hair strand and lead to a coated feel and eventual dryness. This technique of moisturizing and sealing has really been helpful to me and is a resonating hallmark of my regimen. Fighting hair breakage and achieving moisturizing success is all in the order in which you apply your products.


REMEMBER! Oils DO NOT Moisturize
 
Perhaps a words like "nourish" would be better than moisturize. Oil alone will not and cannot moisturize within the hair shaft. An oil (grease) can only coat the outside of the strand, and give it shine- the illusion of moisture. Oil molecules are hydrophobic which means they repel and do not readily mix with water. Remember, if you apply an oil product to your hair before you have added a moisturizing product, you have created a seal on your hair strand that water and moisture cannot penetrate.
 
Protein
 
Protein is what gives the hair its strength and structure. Hair is about 70% keratin protein by nature. There are a wide variety of proteins that serve different functions and roles in hair care. Some enhance elasticity, while others reduce it. These proteins bind to the hair cuticle and help temporarily rebuild any weakened areas. Protein-based products reinforce the hair shaft, and help it remain strong enough to fight breakage
 
Some proteins are stronger than others, but daily or even weekly use of even the milder protein treatments may result in an imbalance between the protein and moisture levels within the hair strands in some people. This is where product percent composition really plays an important role. For example, every product that contains keratin protein is not going to feel the same way across the board, and every product that contains glycerin or water is not going to feel the same either! The protein in question could make up 30% of the product or 0.3%! Who knows! You have to play around with different products to know how strong they are on your particular hair. Your hair protein tolerance will vary from product to product, not necessarily protein to protein.



Protein is found most prevalently in products like instant conditioners (bargain brands like Suave and V05), leave-in conditioners, protein reconstructor conditioner treatments, and even some moisturizers.
 
You Can't Have one Without the other!
 
The unique relationship that exists between the protein and moisture balances within the hair strand is not simply a case of balancing opposing forces one over the other to prevent hair breakage. These two components work together synergistically to produce a healthy head of hair, and neither can work well without the other. Keeping the hair balanced between these two entities is very important. Protein loss from chemical treatments is almost always followed by a moisture loss of some degree. Hair that is properly proteinated absorbs moisture more efficiently because water molecules bind easily to a sound protein structure within the hair. Achieving the proper balance involves using the right combinations of protein and moisture based products for your hair type. Consider the following scenarios:
 
Scenario 1: Kim's hair is breaking like crazy and feels like a brillo pad. It is just plain crunchy and dry! Every time she touches it, pieces seem to just pop right off. Snap, crackle, pop. Combing is impossible without tons of little hairs covering her sink and back. Her hair feels hard and rough even when wet. She's given it protein treatments because the product says it is supposed to stop breakage in its tracks and rebuild the hair. But so far, nothing is working and her problem is getting worse.
 


Scenario 2: Trina's hair is breaking like crazy as well. Her hair feels dry, looks dull, and is very weak. Her hair is too weak to withstand simple combing. It feels extra stretchy when wet and almost follows the comb as she pulls through to detangle. Her hair is just limp and has no life. She's deep conditioned and done hot oil treatments on her hair once a week. Since her breakage began, she has stepped up the conditioning but her problem has gotten worse.

Same Problem- Different Solutions

Both of these women have issues with hair breakage, but the solutions to their individual problems require two very different approaches. The two scenarios above perfectly illustrate what happens when the balance between protein and moisture is tipped too far in either direction. This will teach you to effectively recognize the difference between protein based and moisture based hair problems and help you can organize your hair regimen to effectively combat these issues as they arise.




The Importance of Wet Assessment




Though hair health assessments can be performed on dry hair determining your cause of breakage is often easiest on wet hair. Hair in its wet state exudes the basic properties of elasticity and strength excellently. In fact, these qualities are often exaggerated on wet hair. Thorough and frequent wet assessments will help you maintain your hair's health and condition.

Hair in its optimal condition will not break when wet unless undue stress is placed upon it through aggressive combing, detangling, or unusual types of pulling stress. Balanced hair will feel soft and supple, yet strong while wet. When you comb through it, it should resist excess stretching and will hardly break if you are careful. Over time, and with trial and error, you will be able to tell what is normal stress for your hair.

If your hair does indeed break when wet, the way the hair breaks under these conditions will give you a sure indication of whether more moisture or protein is required to regain the proper balance.

How Do I Perform a Proper Wet Assessment?

It would be difficult for you to wet assess your hair by holding a single strand and pulling on both ends. That type of stress would be considered "undue" stress, because no single hair is ever really subjected to that sort of tension at one time. Any strand of hair (healthy or not) that you pull on by both ends has the potential to snap depending on the pressure you apply to it. Hair should be wet assessed by the normal act of combing though it or touch-testing it.

If your hair:

(When Wet or Dry) Stretches slightly and returns to its original length without breaking, you are balanced! Stick with maintaining!

(When Wet or Dry) Stretches a little more than normal then breaks, you need more protein in your regimen.



(When Wet or Dry)Stretches, stretches, stretches with no significant breakage yet, add a bit more protein to your regimen.


(Wet)- Feels weak, gummy, mushy, or limp, you need to add more protein to your regimen.



(Wet or Dry) Experiences very little to no stretching, and simply snaps or breaks, you need to increase the moisture in your regimen.

(Dry) Feels rough, tough, hard, dry, tangly, brittle, or any combination of those, you need more moisture in your regimen.



Unsure? Err on the side of caution and give your hair more moisture. So now that you have figured out what type of hair breakage you have, what should you do?
 
When the balance is thrown off by too much protein
 
Hair that is shifted too far on the protein side will break easier, both wet and dry, because it lacks elasticity. Elasticity is what allows us to style, stretch, and manipulate our hair without breakage. Hair that breaks with very little tension or stretching is a sign of an overabundance of protein, and a deficiency of moisture. Any type of stretching or tension will break it because the protein goes in and adds structure to the hair. Too much structure makes the hair rigid, and decreases its elasticity. The result? Brittle, breakage-prone hair. This was the issue with Kim's hair. She was feeding her hair more protein than she needed to maintain a healthy balance.





If this describes your hair at any time listen up! To correct this imbalance, you will need to go into a simple deep conditioning and moisturizing regimen. Protein induced breakage conditions can take several weeks to correct repair, and this form of breakage requires much more intensive conditioning and treatment than moisture induced breakage does. It is by far one of the most aggressive and common forms of breakage. It is much easier to overload your hair with protein and cause breakage, than to overload your hair with moisture and cause breakage. That is why if you are not sure what is causing your hair breakage, you should always try giving it moisture first. Depending on your level of breakage, this regimen may need to be followed for consecutive washes.


Clarify your hair  to remove any excess product buildup. Then, deep condition your hair for 30-45 minutes once, preferably twice a week with heat with a thick, creamy moisturizing deep conditioner. Apply a water-based moisturizer to your hair, concentrating on the ends daily. I would watch out for excess protein in common products like leave in conditioners, moisturizers, gels, and instant conditioners like Suave and V05. Protein hides in a lot of everyday products, so avoid those for a few weeks until your moisture balance is corrected. This will give your hair a chance to even out the protein/moisture balance. A list of product recommendations can be found at the end of this article.

When the balance is thrown off by too much moisture

Yes! There is such a thing as "over-conditioning" the hair and Trina found that out the hard way. Hair that is shifted too far on the moisture side will be "super-elastic" and stretch more because it lacks a sound protein structure. Many people describe the feel of over-conditioned and over-moisturized hair as "mush-like" or "overly soft," especially when wet. This kind of hair has a weak, limp, spongy feel to it. Protein deficient hair will tend to pull and stretch along with the comb and then break. It will always stretch first then break because of the low structural protein stores, and overabundance of moisture. Does this describe your hair? Listen up!

To solve this problem, you will need some kind of protein to give the hair structure again. Moisture Induced hair breakage is typically corrected in one protein deep conditioning session. The mildest forms can be corrected by simply moisturizing the hair twice a day with a protein-based water based moisturizer. For mild breakage, Aphogee 2 minute keratin reconstructor works very well. For moderate to heavy breakage, apply a moderate protein conditioner like Organic Root Stimulator Hair Mayo to the hair for about 20-30 minutes, then rinse. For serious or long standing forms of moisture induced breakage opt for a heavier protein treatment like Aphogee Treatment for Damaged Hair.

Even if your hair is stretching without breakage you should use a light protein product to correct this. When your hair stretches, the strand "thins" and becomes weaker across the cross section. It may not break right then at that very point in time, but stretched out of and beyond its shape, it is compromised and will eventually break at some other point. Your hair should be springing back to position. If it's stretching and stretching without breaking it may be your hair's way of telling you, "Hey, I need a little structure (protein) here! I'm getting waaaay too elastic, but not yet enough to break-- so do something now!" This is where a preventive maintenance protein application would come in. You don't have to wait for breakage to act. Your hair is telling you now! Start light, and work from there. You may not need a heavy protein treatment just yet.



Should I schedule my protein treatments in advance?

Some individuals like to schedule moderate protein conditioning treatments, however, I do not advise "protein-ing" on a specific schedule. Scheduling is good for when you are just starting out and getting into the groove, but you will soon start to see that your hair often has its own plan for when you need different things. Setting aside a week or two in your regimen for protein conditioning is just not effective at addressing your hair needs as they arise. Hair does not know or understand our "schedules." Its needs and wants change from day to day, week to week. Treatments should only be done as you need them. Sometimes that might be weekly, other times it may be every 2 or 3 weeks! Only your hair can dictate that to you.



Scheduling also prevents you from truly developing an understanding of your hair needs because instead of looking for certain cues and signs, you are looking at the calendar. Protein-ing on a schedule can eventually lead to protein overload if you are not careful! It is so much harder to bounce back from an overload of protein than it is an overload of moisture/conditioning.



I'm Balanced- Now What?

Now once your hair is balanced and the breakage has minimized, you can try to maintain the balance for as long as you can by interchanging your moisture and protein based products. It does not have to be on a particular schedule. With time and some patience, you will master this delicate balancing act. Happy hair days!



Product Recommendations!

Some great protein-based products to try are

Shampoos- Mane N Tail Shampoo, Motions Lavish Shampoo

Conditioners-Motions Moisture Silk Protein conditioner, Aubrey Organics GPB
Leave Ins/Other Products- Aphogee 2 Minute Keratin Reconstructor, Aphogee Treatment for Damaged Hair, Aphogee Green Tea Reconstructor, Infusium 23 Leave In Conditioner, Nexxus Emergencee, Nexxus Keraphix, Motions CPR, Cantu Shea Butter BreakCure, Cantu Shea Butter GrowStrong, Profectiv Breakfree Moisturizer, Profectiv Megagrowth Moisturizer, Elasta QP Mango Butter Moisturizer, Cantu Shea Butter Leave In Mane N Tail Conditioner, Garnier Fructis Long and Strong, Organic Root Stimulator (ORS) Hair Mayo, Got2B Soft 1 Minute Emergency, Rusk Sensories 60 second Revive, ORS replenishing pak, Garnier Fructis Long N Strong,


Leave Ins/Other Moisturizers: Kenra Daily Defense leave in conditioner mist, Dove Intense Moisture Mist, Salerm 21 leave in conditioner, Organic Root Stimulator's Olive Oil Moisturizer, Neutragena Silk Touch Leave In Conditioner

Some good moisturizing products to try are:

Shampoos-Neutragena Creme Lather Shampoo, Kenra Moisturizing Shampoo, KeraCare Moisturing Shampoo, Elucence Moisture Benefits Shampoo, Design Essentials Moisture Retention Conditioning Shampoo, Aveda Sap Moss Shampoo, and Creme of Nature Shampoo (green and red label)



Conditioners: Crème of Nature Nourishing Conditioner, Herbal Essences, Replenishing Conditioner, Nexxus Humectress, Kenra Moisturizing Conditioner, Dove Intense Moisture, Neutragena Triple Moisture Daily Conditioner, Neutragena Triple Moisture Deep Recovery Mask, Elucence Moisture Balancing conditioner, Keracare Humecto, Mizani Moisturefuse, Elasta QP DPR-11

All of these products can readily be found in WalMart, Target, Walgreens, CVS, and local or online beauty supply stores or salons for under $12. Many of these products are less than $5.00!


by Audrey Sivasothy

I found this article to be very interesting loaded with tons of good information.  Just remember to CHECK, CHECK, CHECK, the ingredients in the hair products that are brought, as we know not all hair ingredients are good for our hair.  By purchasing products with bad ingredients may just add to the problem for those who may be lacking protein and poor moisture in our AuNaturales.  Just a friendly reminder, ENJOY!!!






 

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

GUIDELINES ON CHOOSING A GOOD CONDITIONER...


Go into any shampoo and conditioner aisle at your local drug store and you are bound to be overwhelmed and shocked at all of the options. Women with dry and/or extremely curly hair need to use conditioning treatments because it adds much-needed hydration to dry, brittle hair. Conditioners cannot make severely damaged hair healthy again, but it can be used as a protection against further damage from heating appliances and other abuse we inflict on our hair.

Here are tips on choosing the right conditioner:




Read Labels

Reading labels will make sure you're getting what you paid for. Oftentimes, more expensive conditioners will have the same ingredients as less expensive conditioners, which makes you wonder what you're paying for. Always read compare labels.

Also avoid the use of the following ingredients or make sure they are at the end of the list of often-unpronounceable products:

Isopropyl Alcohol



Methyl, Propyl, Butyl, and Ethyl Paraben


Petrolatum and Mineral Oil


Sodium Lauryl Sulfate or Sodium Laureth Sulfate

The aforementioned products may cause allergic reactions. They are not harmful in smaller doses and are controversial in terms of if they are truly harmful. Just use caution.





Look for conditioners infused with these natural oils.







rosemary



coconut


jojoba


olive

The ingredients are great for natural hair conditioners. Luckily, many products on the market are infused with these ingredients. Always look for these ingredients to be near the top of the label on the back of the conditioner bottle.

Use a Creamy Conditioner

Clear, gel-based conditoners tend to dry out curly hair.

Other helpful advice for conditioning black hair:

Minimize the Use of Heat


Heat damages your hair. Reducing the amount of heat will make the need for conditioning your hair less urgent.

Concentrate on the ends of your hair

The ends of your hair are the driest because it takes your hair’s natural oils the longest time to reach them. Likewise, don't put all the conditioner on your roots because your scalp produces oils naturally and the need for conditioner there is less important than the ends.

Remember to Use a Leave-in Conditioner After You Wash and Condition Your Hair





Some would argue that you can throw away your wash-out conditioner altogether if you use an excellent shampoo and an excellent leave-in conditioner. No matter what you decide, always use a leave-in conditioner. Leave-in conditioner acts as protection from heat and normal wear and tear.
Use these tips on choosing the right conditioner and you will find your hair healthier and more manageable. As always, these are just tips and suggestions on how to care for your hair. Of course everyone's hair is different and what you feel may be the best option can be different from the advice suggested here. Remember that the best hair is healthy hair.







By Adrienne Christina Miles

Saturday, October 10, 2009

UNDERSTANDING THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SHEDDING AND BREAKING...



Hair Shedding versus Breakage

Understanding the difference between hair breakage and shedding is an important part of any healthy hair regimen. Many people use these terms interchangeably to refer to any hair that falls from the head; however, this misinformed language can be a recipe for hair disaster. You must be able to properly differentiate between these two very specific forms of hair "loss" in order to effectively address even the smallest of your hair needs. This article will teach you the difference between hair shedding and hair breakage, and offer strategies to help you combat both hair problems.

What is Shedding

In its truest sense, shed hair is hair that has reached the end of its growing cycle and naturally falls from the scalp along with its tiny, white "root" attached. This is not the actual hair root that is secured deeply within your scalp, but it is the bulb rootor base of the hair strand found on the scalp-originating end. It appears white because the hair stops producing melanin (color) at the point in its growth cycle right before it gets ready to fall. If your actual hair root came out along with the hair, you would no longer be able to produce hair from that same place on the scalp ever again! If a hair does not possess this white root bulb, then it is not a naturally shed hair, rather, a broken one. Shed hair tends to be longer in length than broken hairs which are generally short pieces of varying lengths. According to Halal, after a hair is naturally shed, it may take about 130 days for a new hair to fully emerge in its place.



In general, shedding should not be a major concern for you and should be seen as a sign of a healthy, normal, functioning scalp. There is no need to fear shedding unless it is tied to a medical issue. If you notice rapid hair loss from shedding or hair loss accompanied by a host of other problems, please consult a medical professional. Most shedding, however, is simply nature taking its course.

What can I do about shedding?

You must understand that because shedding is a natural, internal process, it may not respond to topical, external treatments. Some have praised garlic shampoos or "garlic scalp rubs" for reducing shedding, but there has been no clear concensus on the effectiveness of garlic as a remedy for shedding. Shedding is also not easily solved by protein or moisture treatments because it has nothing to do with the hair shaft itself, but is a response to hormonal influences on the hair follicle and is dependent on growth cycles. When a hair completes its life cycle, which generally last s 4-6 years, its final act is the shedding we experience. This cannot be prevented.




Also, our hair naturally cycles in and out of seasonal shedding phases which may last days or weeks at a time in some individuals. Research suggests that peak shedding rates occur during the fall season. A healthy head of hair may shed as many as 50- 100 hairs per day, though I personally believe this amount to be a grand stretch. You should be concerned if your shedding suddenly increases to a rate that was uncommon to you before, or if the shedding seems to be prolonged over the course of several weeks or months

Do keep in mind that there are special periods in the human life cycle where shedding is naturally increased. For example, women who are undergoing a bout of postpartum shedding after having a baby may have to deal with increased shedding for several months until their normal hormone levels return. Other conditions which may increase your shedding rate are:

*styling methods that place stress on the follicles

*birth control/menstrual cycles/menopause




*pregnancy

*heredity (runs in the family)



*crash dieting/ low protein diets, poor diet

*illnesses with high fever as a prevailing symptom



*anemia, thyroid disorders, and a host of other chronic disorders

* certain medications and major surgeries and treatments like chemotherapy

Please consult with a medical professional to diagnose any prolonged, abnormal shedding or other unusual scalp conditions.

Breakage

Breakage on the other hand is not natural, and is an indication of an imbalance of important forces within the hair strand. Broken hairs do not fall naturally from the head, but are typically a sign of mishandling or abuse. In the stages before a hair ultimately breaks, the hair first becomes discolored and experiences cuticle loss. Eventually, the fibers begin to split and ultimately there is breakage.




So what causes breakage? Hair can be weakened and damaged by anything from rough handing and sun exposure to coloring and straightening chemicals. Breakage is also more common with a hair's age; older hairs, usually the hairs nearest the ends, have the greatest tendency to break due to normal wear and tear. When breakage isn't a response to physical manipulation and abuse, it is most often triggered by the lack of moisture in the hair strand. Other types of breakage may be caused by the over- structuring of the hair strand with protein treatments done in excess. A prompt, and proper response to breakage will help you stop breakage in its tracks.

Ambiguous Hair: When Nothing Seems to Work

You handle your hair gently, you've tried the moisture, you've tried the protein . . . but nothing is working! What gives?

Well, occasionally, over the course of your new regimen, you will notice times where your hair and your breakage are simply, "unreadable" and do not respond to your attempts to treat them. Many times, hair that does not respond to treatment is burdened with product buildup. Even the lightest products can accumulate and build up on the hair shaft rendering your moisturizing and protein replacement efforts futile. Other times, the reason hair does not respond positively to treatment is because the underlying problem has been misdiagnosed, and the wrong treatment has been applied (i.e. more protein on hair with protein overload, or more moisture on over-moisturized hair).




The following regimen is a remedy for hair that is not responding to your attempts to treat it. This treatment can also be done as a once monthly maintenance step in your regular clarifying schedule. Since this is a "stripping wash" (you are essentially stripping your hair of products and natural oils and getting it back to the bare essentials), this treatment should be done only once or twice per month, followed by a deep conditioning. Subsequent washings should be done according to your hair's needs, and always with a gentle sulfate-free shampoo.

To begin:

1.)  Clarify the hair with a strong ,sodium lauryl and/or ammonium lauryl sulfate shampoo like Pantene Pro-V Purity. Any shampoo that indicates clarifying ability will be fine. Thoroughly saturate your hair with warm running water for 5 minutes to remove any topical debris on the strands and scalp. Apply your shampoo. Allow your shampoo to rest on the hair for five minutes undisturbed to ensure that the surfactants bind properly to dirt and oils. Rinse the shampoo thoroughly, and repeat.

2.)  Then, apply a mild protein conditioner like Aphogee 2 min keratin reconstructor or Motions CPR to the hair for about 10 minutes, then rinse.

3.)  Next, apply a moisturizing deep conditioner like Crème of Nature Nourishing Conditioner, Kenra Moisturizing Conditioner, KeraCare Humecto, or Elucence Moisture Benefits Conditioner for 30-45 minutes under a plastic cap with heat. *Alternatively, you can combine steps 2 and 3 and apply the two conditioners together and then go under a plastic cap and heat for 30 minutes. Either way should be fine.

4.)  At this point, your hair should be cleaned and conditioned and you should be able to determine whether or not your next product step needs to include more moisture or more protein.

5.)  Your last step should always include sealing the hair with an oil of your choice.

Now, in this treatment, you have addressed both a protein and moisture need. More attention is given to moisturizing in this treatment because 90% of hair issues stem from a lack of moisture in the hair. Because it is much easier to overdo protein, and much easier to underdo moisture, this treatment errs on the side of caution and assumes there is a moisture deficit. Giving the hair too much moisture does not have the same devastating effects that overdoing protein does, and too much moisture in the hair can easily be corrected.




So, why do we treat ambiguous hair with both moisture and protein?

Your ambiguous hair might actually be caused by a lack of both protein AND moisture at the same time. The light protein step helps insure that moisture binds and remains within the hairshaft by gently reinforcing the cuticle layers. Even if your breakage problems are purely moisture based, you may not be retaining the moisture you desperately need because your hair lacks a sound protein structure.

This treatment should effectively free up the hair shaft and allow you to better determine the cause of your hair problems. In fact, STEP 1, the clarifying step, may provide you with all the information you need without resorting to the rest of the regimen.

Note: If you are attempting to treat an obvious protein overload, this sample regimen will not work for you. If you are looking for a regimen to help with protein overload, follow this treatment but omit STEP 2 that calls for additional protein. At STEP 4, proceed with a moisturizing leave in conditioner and moisturizer of your choice. Keep in mind that protein induced breakage takes a few weeks or several washes to clear up. Though it may not appear to be responding to treatment, each wash is lessening the hold of the protein on your hair. These proteins bind to your hair cuticle, heavier treatments will bind more strongly than others and may take time to completely remove.

Whenever your hair is acting ambiguous or strange, bring it back to square one. Clarify it, and see where you stand!

Is All Breakage Preventable?

In theory. Obviously, in a perfect world, there would be no breakage. However, we do not live in a perfect world and some breakage is bound to happen.Hair is an extremely delicate fiber, though strong, it isn't made out of steel! It would be very difficult to prevent every single, solitary strand from ever breaking. One or two broken hairs are nothing to be thoroughly concerned about. However, it is when you start getting hair here, hair there, 7 here, 9 there-- over the course of a few days that you want to start getting worried about your moisture/protein balance. If you are getting less than 5-7 broken hairs a day through the normal course of arranging your hair, do not fret.





Your job is simply to minimize the breakage as much as possible. Be as gentle as possible when handling and working with your tresses. Try to think of your hair as the rarest, most expensive fine silk head covering. Only handle it with clean, smooth, well manicured hands. No hang nails, or rough dry callouses! Gently maneuver your way through tough tangles and keep your hair soft and moisturized daily. Tie your hair up at night to protect your strands from your nighttime tossing and turning. Treat your hair with care and you will see less hair where it isn't supposed to be!  
by, Audrey Sivasothy

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

LEAVE- IN HOMEMADE SPRITZ...



Hey ladies,   I came across a great leave-in spritz, That myself as well as my hair love.  I've recently discovered that my hair doesn't take well to butters, and direct oils.  They seem to be to heavy for my hair , after using one of the two, I seem to loose my curl pattern or my hair appears to be to oily ( I really dont like that) .  So i've been using this great recipe that I found instead.  Listed below is all you will need to make this great, inexpensive recipe .  This recipe gives my hair a just enough moisture thats needed and softness.  I wear wash n go's .  All I usually do with this mixture is wet and apply , then allow it to dry .

1-8 ounce spray bottle

3 ounces of distilled water

1 ounce of light conditioner (Vo5, Suave.White Rain, etc )

1/2 ounce of oil ( olive oil, avocado, grape seed, or sweet almond )

Just pour all ingredients into spray bottle and shake well.

                                                                                         ENJOY!!!
                                         

Friday, October 2, 2009

EGG FOR OUR AU NATURALE...




Egg has become an important part of your hair and skin care diet. Everyone wants to have beautiful and lustrous hair. With the use of raw eggs anyone can find themselves with beautiful hair. One need not cross the seven continents to find a raw egg. Every house can easily get a good supply of raw eggs. These can be used for making some of the best hair conditioners. The properties of egg create a needed impact on your dull and dry hair. It helps the hair to recreate itself. It maintains the texture of your hair by the presence of the important elements

Some Home Based Recipes

For strong and beautiful hair you can mix 2 egg yolks (depending on length of your hair) with 2 tsp. castor oil. Massage this mixture on your hair. Keep it for sometime then rinse it thoroughly.

Whip up two raw eggs. Pour this mixture on your hair by massaging. Let it dry. Shampoo your hair and then give vinegar and water rinse. Follow this procedure every month for soft and smooth hair.

Beat egg yolk thoroughly to make a frothy solution. Add 1 tsp oil of choice and beat again to make a proper mixture. Add water to this mixture and apply it all over your scalp. Once dry, rinse well to get a proper conditioned treatment.

Mix egg yolk in 1/4 cup of yogurt with a little lime skin. Mix the ingredients thoroughly and apply it to every single strand of hair. After applying keep it for 10 minutes and then wash it off. The combination of yogurt and egg is very good for your hair

Mix a whole egg to lemon juice. Whisk it properly. Once applied on your hair keep it for sometime. Rinse it thoroughly. This combination gives a shine to your dull hair

Beat egg yolk to make a frothy paste. Add 1/2 tsp. olive oil and beat the mixture again. Slowly and steadily add 3/4 cup of luke warm water. After shampooing, massage this conditioner and leave it for few minutes. Rinse it later.

Mix together 1 tbsp. honey, 1 egg yolk, 1/2 tsp. almond oil and 1 tbsp. yogurt. Make a frothy paste and apply it on your hair. Rinse it in 1/2 hours time. This will smooth your hair and moisturize it evenly.

By: Sharon Hopkins
                                                                                    ENJOY!!!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

HOW TO DETERMINE IF YOUR HAIR IS LACKING PROTEIN...




Black hair is prone to breakage. Some amount of hair loss is natural, but most hair loss in black women stems from mistreatment or a disproportionate amount of moisture or protein. Many stylists who focus on healthy black hair will tell you that your hair demands a balance of moisture and protein. Nothing else that you do to obtain a head of healthy black hair will matter if you that balance is thrown off. Follow these steps to test your hair.



Instructions
 
1.  WET YOUR HAIR
 
It is best to do this test after you have shampooed your hair. While it is still wet you will need to grip about an inch of your hair between your fingers.
 
2.  STRETCH THE WET STRANDS OF HAIR
 
Take the inch of wet hair and run a comb through it. Make sure that it is not tangled when you do this - you don't want to harm your hair. And remember, it is always best to use a wide-tooth comb in black hair
 
3OBSERVE
 
Pay close attention to the way that the hair strands react after they have been combed. Healthy black hair strands will stretch, but they will not break unless they are under an extreme amount of stress. Again, what you are looking for in this step is to see how your hair reacts to the wet stretch.
 
4.  DIAGNOSE
 
If your hair stretches just a little, then returns to its normal length without breakage, your hair is balanced. Good job, you're done!
 
If your hair exhibits any of the following tendencies, you need to focus on moisturizng:
 
Does not stretch at all, then breaks



 Is extremely rough and brittle

If your hair exhibits any of the following tendencies, you need to focus on protein:

Is limp and gummy feeling/looking



Stretches a long way then proceeds to break off

5.  TREAT

After you have found out which problem is affecting your hair, you will need to address it. Any stylist will tell you that lack of moisture is usually the problem for black hair. But, there are times when lack of protein is the issue. In either case, here is how you can solve each problem:

Lack of MOISTURE:

This one is simple. Black hair needs a great deal of moisture because it is very porous. Look for moisturizing conditioners or moisturizing creams, then make sure to seal in the moisture with a light oil sheen

Lack of PROTEIN:




There are many protein treatments for black hair. You can also get protein based leave in conditioners as well.

6.  RETURN TO YOUR NORMAL HAIR CARE REGIMEN

Once your hair is balanced you can return to your normal hair care regime. If you have completed the comb/stretch test, but you are still not sure whether your hair lacks protein or moisture, it is best to shoot for the moisture issue first in black hair.

                                                                                                               ENJOY!!!







Tuesday, September 29, 2009

HOMEMADE HAIR MASKS FOR FRIZZY HAIR...



Frizzy hair is the foe of many women. Trying to tame and treat frizz can be expensive and tedious. Instead of going to the salon and wasting money on overpriced products, try a few simple homemade recipes to tame your do, and keep it shining.  

Banana Almond Mask

A popular recipe, the banana almond hair mask enriches hair and creates shine. Simply take one ripe banana, and mash it up with 1 to 2 tbsp. of almond oil. Apply to hair, and leave on for 15 to 20 minutes. Then rinse out, and shampoo and condition hair as you normally would.

Another Banana Mask

A variation of the previous recipe, here you use banana and avocado to make a mask. Mash together a banana and an avocado. Comb through hair, allow to sit for 15 minutes, then rinse. For extra conditioning, or to thin out the mask, add 1/3 cup of cream before applying to hair.

Mayo Mask

Mayonnaise is a real frizz-buster. Apply about ½ cup of mayo to hair from roots to ends. Wrap up in a shower cap, and wait 15 minutes before shampooing and rinsing. Since the smell of mayo can be overwhelming, try mixing in 2 to 3 drops of scented oil.

Honey Mask

Honey is effective in treating damaged hair thanks to the humectants it contains. It also smells nice, and will leave hair with a sweet after-scent. Mix 1/3 cup of honey with 2 tbsp. of olive or almond oil. Carefully apply the mixture through hair, and wrap hair in a shower cap. Leave on for 30 minutes, then rinse.

Hot Oil

Hot oil treatments enrich and repair frizzy hair. Mix 4 to 5 tbsp. of olive oil with 2 to 3 egg whites. Apply mixture throughout hair, paying extra attention to scalp. Wrap your head in a warm, damp towel. The heat from the towel will help the oil infuse into your hair. Rinse after 20 minutes.



Tips
 
Depending on hair length, you may need to adjust the amounts in the mask recipes. Play around with ingredients to create your own mask. Just remember that oils moisturize and fatty ingredients add moisture and strength. If you want to use fruits and veggies, stick with those that are high in minerals and vitamins and easy to mash up. Make sure to rinse well.
 
                                                                               ENJOY!!!

Monday, September 28, 2009

CARING FOR OUR AU NATURALES DURING THE WINTER MONTHS...




Hey ladies, here in the states the colder weather is approaching.  And because of this our hair may began to behave differently.  Hair can easily become dry during this time of the year.  Indoor heating devices are the reason why air becomes dry. A humidifier can help by adding moisture to the air. You can simply leave a pot of water on your stove, and waters steaming into the air, this will prevent dandruff as well. But it’s just the one from many things that could help to keep your hair more healthy.

Here are some more tips for your hair protection during wintertime: Cold, snow, strong winds are very harmful for your hair. Therefore always wear a scarf, hat or cap to protect your hair from all damaging winters’ effects. But make sure that all headdresses worn are not  tight this could restrict circulation in your scalp, also do not use hats without protecting your hair with a silk scarf. Before you put on a hat, always remember to put on some nourishing conditioner. It will be like a conditioning treatment.

Adding moisture to your hair is especially important at this time of year. Look for products with cetearyl and cetyl alcohols. Both are structurally similar, derived from coconut. They are the best moisturizing agents for conditioner, shampoo. If your hair is very damaged or dry, you should use a moisturizing shampoo as well. After using a good product that does moisturize hair you want to be sure to lock that moisture in. A cold or cool rinse helps close the cuticle down and seal in the moisture.

Deep conditioning is vital and irreplaceable for parched winter locks. Most stylists recommend deep conditioning minimum once a week. Choose a moisturizer rich in humectants and natural oils. Use a conditioner daily. Concentrate the conditioner on hair ends. Wash it under the shower, than leave it hanging down. As part of your hair care, do a final rinse in cold water – it’s a secret for extra shine to your hair.

 Don't rinse your conditioner out purely. Leave in about 25 - 30 % of the conditioner; also leave a little conditioner in the ends. Be careful not to satiate the hair too much with hair care products. And remember, never brush your hair when it is wet and also never go outside with your hair wet, you risk breakage!

Don't wash your hair too often during the winter season – you are risking depleting natural oils. If usually you shampoo every three days, so in wintertime shampoo once a week ( if you use shampoo at all in you regimen). Advisable massaging the scalp with light oils like jojoba, olive, avocado or shea tree butter. Massage a quarter teaspoon of warm natural oil through your hair once a week. Leave on overnight.

Avoid taking hot showers or washing your hair in hot water, because it’s making your hair dry out and became damaged. Use warm or cool water instead. longer hair has to be trimmed to bring life back to limp hair and to stay healthy looking; do it every six weeks and you will ensure your split ends won't travel up the hair shaft. Drink a lot of water for internal hydration and take vitamins, specific to hair health.

                                                                                              ENJOY!!!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

HOW TO STEAM YOUR HAIR WITH OUT A STEAMER...



So you’ve started to really take care of your hair and it’s thriving. You’ve bought all the things you think are necessary to keep your locks looking at their best

You certainly don’t want to become a product junkie buying every hair tool you can find only to use it once then realize that it’s not absolutely necessary. A steamer is not absolutely necessary if you already own a hooded or bonnet dryer.

The idea of the steamer is to infuse moisture into the hair with the aid of heat. The steam method is especially ideal if your hair is in need of extra moisture or you have a treatment in your hair that requires a steamer. Great results can be achieved just as easily with a couple of handy household items and if you already own a hooded dryer, a steam treatment is well within your reach without breaking the bank!

What you will need:

2 face cloths



A bowl full of hot water (not boiling)


2 plastic caps or plastic bags


A hooded/bonnet dryer
 
Prepare your hair first by washing and applying the conditioner or hair treatment. Soak both face cloths in the hot water. Wring some of the water out of the first face cloth. The cloth should be wet but not soaking. Place the cloth over your hair and immediately cover with one of the plastic caps/plastic bags. Wring the second face cloth and apply this over the plastic bag already on your head and immediately apply the plastic bag/cap. Ensure that the last plastic bag is tied securely around the hairline to prevent water dripping down your neck. Both bags should be spacious enough to allow the steam to form.
 
                                                                                                       ENJOY!!!

Friday, September 25, 2009

COCONUT AND LIME TREATMENT FOR AU NATURALE'S



If you have natural black hair chances are that you are already in love with your texture and wouldn’t change it for the world. As well it should be! But like anyone else, you don’t mind the occasional bout of ‘the grass is greener on the other side’ and would like to change your look temporarily.

If you have natural very curly/kinky hair, particularly 4a/b hair types, you will appreciate that it will take more heat to get ‘relaxer straight’ results when you flat iron your hair. The downfall of using too much heat on your hair is that it may damage it irreparably i.e. burn it straight! Nobody wants to risk the health of their hair for the sake of straight locks for a week. An alternative is required.

This is where the coconut and lime ‘relaxer’ could help you. The ‘straightening’ effect achieved is most noticeable in slightly wavy hair. In African American (black) hair, the results are more subtle and with continued application, it results in loosening or elongating the curl pattern which makes heat styling much easier. This technique is by no means new; it has been used for years by Asian women to straighten their curly hair safely without the use of chemicals

The original recipe involves mixing coconut juice with the lime juice and leaving in the fridge overnight until a cream forms on top. This cream is then applied to the hair and left for a few hours then rinsed off. The remainder of the mixture is then discarded. The main issue with this recipe is that even though the coconut milk with solidify slightly when put in the fridge, the natural heat from your body once applied to the hair will make it runny again and you may find that a lot of the treatment will end up running down your face and neck! Another problem is the wastage involved as only a small percentage of the coconut milk is being used

The recipe below is a version of the original allowing both for the dryness of natural black hair with minimum wastage of the ingredients.

Here’s how to make the treatment:

1 tin of coconut milk
2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil

4 tablespoons of lime juice
2-3 tablespoons of cornstarch


Empty the coconut milk into a saucepan add the extra virgin olive oil and whisk until well blended. Coconut milk varies in consistency by brand so depending on how thin the mixture in the saucepan is, add 2-3 tablespoons in a separate bowl and mix this with the lime juice until the mixture is lump free then add to the coconut milk & olive oil mixture. Put the saucepan over a medium heat whisking constantly. The purpose is not to cook the mixture but to activate the cornstarch which will thicken the mixture to a ‘conditioner’ type consistency. This should take a couple of minutes. If you find the mixture is still too thin then add a bit more cornstarch or if you get a brand of coconut milk that that is very thick to begin with, you may omit the corn starch altogether.

Apply the mixture to your hair in sections to ensure it is evenly covered. Cover with a plastic cap then under a steam cap for ½ hour to an hour. If you don’t have a steam cap you can use a hooded dryer( optional).

Depending on the length and thickness of you hair, the mixture will be enough for 1-2 applications. Place any remaining treatment into a plastic jar/container and freeze until you require it next.

Proceed to shampoo the mixture out of your hair thoroughly then proceed to deep condition as usual with an ultra moisturizing conditioner. Remember, the final rinse should be done with cold/lukewarm water to close the hair cuticles and seal in the moisture.


Enjoy!!!