Thursday, 12 February 2015

How to retain length and maintain healthy african hair.

How do you retain length? I get this question a lot but sometimes I realize that some ladies get disappointment at my answers because they expect some miracle working product. For me there is no miracle product, no miracle oils, pills or anything of the sort. Healthy hair is possible for everyone and with the right hair practices everyone can achieve healthy hair and healthy hair looks good no matter what length it is. If you are just starting your hair journey, then i encourage you to focus on health first and when you are happy with the health of the hair then start focusing on length retention. below are a few tips that have really helped me to keep my hair healthy and to retain length.
Protective style- high bun on flat ironed hair :)
  1. Water your hair- Contrary to what we have grown up hearing and believing, water does not damage your hair it is actually very good for it because your hair needs moisture to thrive. Our hair is naturally dry and hair that is dry will break. You add water to your hair by either washing it or moisturizing it using a water based moisturizer. To add moisture to my hair I wash it once a week add a moisturizer(water) then seal in the moisture with an oil(Coconut oil) and then a butter(Raw Shea butter)
  2. Be Gentle- Your hair is not as tough as you think. it just looks tough but african hair is actually the most fragile of all hair types. It helps to do your hair only when you have time. never start doing your hair when you have a commitment a few hours later. take your time to do your hair in small sections. The less breakage you have the more length you retain.
  3. Low Manipulation- Did you know that you do not have to comb your hair everyday even if it is open? yes you can. This is one of my most important tips when it comes to retaining length and getting healthy hair altogether but it takes practice. Find ways to leave your hair alone. Like i said earlier I wash my hair once a week and on these wash days i already decide what hairstyle i will wear for the whole week. I then don´t mess around with my hair for the whole time, I just make sure that my edges look good and that is it. Depending on how you like to style your hair protective styling may be a better solution to low manipulation.
  4. Protective styles- These are hairstyles that keep your hair hidden, these include braids, weaves, wigs, cornrows e.t.c you just need to be careful that these are not done too tight. and most importantly never forget to moisturize your hair even when they are in a protective style. I usually moisten (Not wet) my braids twice a week with water and then I apply oil onto them to keep them moisturised. Remember dry hair breaks.
  5. Patience- It takes time to grow hair, take your time to find out what your hair likes this will really help you to know what it needs. I for instance had to learn that wash and goes look great on my hair but the tangles I get from rocking a wash and go are something else. So i hardly do wash and go´s. a hair journey is a learning process. please do not give up or give excuses. I have heard so many women say "well you know you have that good hair" for me there is no such thing. all hair is beautiful it is just different.
  6. Avoid Comparisons-  Just like you are unique, your hair is also very unique to you. I have been looking all over you tube to find someone who has hair like mine or a hair twin as the hair bloggers call them, but most of the time there are similarities but i haven´t found an identical twin. What i am trying to say is accept your own hair as it is, love it, nurture it and you will be surprised.
  7. A Hair care routine does not need to be too complicated- I know how overwhelming it can be at first. don´t be carried away to buy a million products just because you saw someone else use them and get great results.There are so many good products in the market you just need to know how to pick them out. 
  8. Lastly pray to God to give you the kind of hair you want and guide you in your hair decisions. I pray about everything in my life, so why not my hair ;)
Relaxed ladies: While I was still relaxed my hair needed both moisture and protein. so I mixed a moisture and protein conditioner every week for my washes. Relaxed hair has been chemically altered and it needs more conditioning than natural hair.
If you would like a post on a sample hair care routine for relaxed/ texlaxed hair please comment below.
Natural Ladies: Unless your natural hair has been damaged by heat or color you will need less protein and a lot more moisture. A post on my current natural hair regimen is coming soon :)
Transitioning Ladies: I have already shared my tips on transitioning here My tips on transitioning to natural
I gathered all those tips from experience all through my transition.

There is still more to share but I don´t want this post to be too long. So the rest is carried forward. If you have any questions or if there is an issue you are having with your own hair please comment below and I will address it.

Thanks for reading and God bless you!
Joanne. 


Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Natural hair update! 2 years post relaxer

On the 31st of January was 2 years since my last relaxer. In hair blogger language I am 24 months post relaxer!!! hurrah!!! it seems like only yesterday that I announced to you that I was transitioning to natural hair. If you missed on that you can read about it here My transition announcement 
Two years down the line I am fully natural and loving it. I love my relaxed hair and I love my natural hair too. Contrary to many women who feel that going natural brought them a feeling of liberation, mine did not I am the exact same person I was when I was relaxed. To me Afro hair is beautiful no matter how you choose to wear it as long as you keep it healthy. Your hair your choice!
My hair before washing and conditioning
My hair blown out/ blow dried
Hair blown out. I was so tired already but the hair looked good!!!

 
I decided to straighten my hair just to see what it looked like straight and in the process I learned yet another lesson. While my hair was still relaxed it was much easier to get  straight. Natural hair needs a lot more time!! It took me a total of 5 hours to wash, condition, blow out/dry, flat iron and trim my hair I was so exhausted afterwards that I could not even take pictures. Too bad because my hair reverted a little bit during the night. My hair desperately needs a good trim but all in all I am very happy with it´s overall condition. I love the thickness and  have enough hair to play around with. I love having hair to play around with and that is why I settled for a long term transition instead of a big chop. I ended up chopping off the rest of my relaxed/ texlaxed ends at 17 Months post relaxer you can read about that here just in case you missed out on that Long term transition update!
Flat ironed hair at 2 years post relaxer
 
flat ironed hair at 2 years post relaxer
The journey has had it´s ups and downs and I am really grateful to God for giving me the strength and patience to get to know my hair and learn to care for it. I am still learning though because this hair is just full of surprises. I have three different curl patterns on my head and I am still learning how to care for each because they behave very differently.
I have finally found a hair care routine that works well for my hair. If you would like a blog post on my latest hair care routine, please comment below.   
My goal for this year is to get to mid back length when my hair is stretched/ straight. This means that I will be on a very strict hair routine until I achieve my goal :)
What is your goal length for this year? 

Thanks for reading and God bless you!
Joanne

God and me Monday: A heart of gratitude

This week as I sat in the waiting room of a doctor´s office, I needed to kill time as I waited for my turn to come. So I opened my handbag and found my notebook and a pen. I decided to start writing down all the things I was grateful to God for. I was just writing down the seventh sentence when I got called in to see the doctor.
Later on at night as I was having my quiet time with God, I suddenly heard a voice within me saying that I needed to appreciate the people in my life by showing them gratitude just as I had shown gratitude to the Lord in that Doctor´s office. It was suddenly clear to me that my relationship with others depended on my relationship with God. The more I Loved God the more I would love others, the more I was thankful to God the more I would be thankful to others.
Take some time to say thank you to the people who have been a blessing to you. My pastor always tells us not to wait until people die in order to start eulogizing how grateful we are for them. And this makes sense to me now more than ever. Do it NOW! Tell somebody THANK YOU!
On that note I would like to thank you for supporting our blog, being our facebook fans and website members. Thank you for all your input. we really appreciate you and pray that God will continue to bless you abundantly.

God bless you and thanks for reading,
Joanne

Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Natural hair update!

For the past two weeks my hair has literally survived on water. I have been so busy that the last thing on my mind was washing my hair. I have come up with an emergency routine for such days when I really don't have the time and patience to deal with my hair.
my hair loves water and it does a great job defining my curls so moisturising my hair by spraying water or a leave in on it is my number one rule.
Rule number two is applying oil or butter to the hair without parting the hair into sections. I mainly focus on the ends. Since it is very cold where I live thick butters such as Shea butter do a great job keeping my hair moisturised.
Rule number three is keeping in one hairstyle for at least a week to avoid to much manipulation.

And now for my biggest life saver! Alcohol free hair gel. I use gel to keep my edges down and further define my curls without having to comb my hair. This keeps manipulation at a minimum.

I have been wearing my hair in a side puff most of the time.

God and me Monday; Fear and dreams.

I once heard someone say that what you focus on you make room for and what you fear you empower. If we focus on our fears whatever they may be then all our attention goes into that fear and we make room for that fear to have an impact on our lives. Instead of making room for fear make room for God and He will miraculously see you through.
It is time to finaly go get that degree you have always wanted, write that book you have always wanted to write, start up that business you have always had in mind because with God all things are possible.

God bless you so much!

Thanks for reading
Joanne

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

CANTU GOODNESS!!! hair products in Nairobi.

Hello y'all,

Hasn't it been ages!
Between taking time off to study,(which I am done with at least for now) and getting started on a new job,
and a new addition to my family, finding time to blog has been next to impossible.
Jo has however filled the gap well...Thanks Sis.

hair growth 15 months post relaxer

Last week I was in Nairobi Town trying to collect a few things that Joanne had requested so her friend could travel back to Germany with them for Jo.

I had to go into super cosmetics just to see what new goodies are being stocked
I went straight to my beloved last Isle and wooooow!I was blown away by all the Cantu Shea butter goodness!

Cantu shea butter goodness Super cosmetics Nairobi   

Cantu shea butter goodness Super cosmetics Nairobi 
Cantu shea butter moisturizing twist and lock gel Supercosmetics Nairobi
I'm sure some of you guys have seen and even tried some of these products.They have stocked most products specifically for Natural hair!!! and most prices per product are below Kes 1000.
Some for scalp treatment,some for twisting some for Co-washing etc....

Please share if you've used product from this new range of Cantu goodness!

PS:I'm currently 15months post Relaxer....Updates on my hair coming soon.

15 moths post relaxer. look at the difference between the relaxed and natural hair!

Thanks for reading!
Eva

Monday, 19 January 2015

God and me Monday: the lion's den

Hallo beautiful people, although my Monday is almost over I just had to share what is in my heart today.  I am going to take you back to the old Testament today. There are quite a number of prophets in the old testament but one of them really stands out for  me. He lived a very Holy life and depended on God despite the difficult situations that came his way.

Daniel was even put in a Lion's den and the lions did not touch Him.
Sometimes life throws hard balls at us and it is so easy to get discouraged and to want to give up. But taking Daniel's example we learn that with our God nothing is impossible. He is able to turn every situation around if only we put our trust fully in Him.
I pray that God will send His Angel to shut the mouths of any Lions roaring in your life in Jesus Name.
Scripture reference for today is Daniel 6


Thanks for reading and stay blessed.
Joanne
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