Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Checking in on my 2012 Hair Goals

I intend to check in every other month, just to ensure that I'm sticking to my goals. This is my first check in!

1) Continue to stretch for 10-12 weeks at a time. (relaxed earlyish because of carnival but will have longer stretches for the rest of the year)

2) Do a big trim at the end of the 6 mths to remove bleached ends and even out 'V' into a 'U' (did in December 2011, will do another trim in Dec 2012 to get rid of more of my bleached ends)

3) Full APL Feb 2012 (Made it!)

4) Full BSB May 2012 (just 2 inches away, definitely attainable)

5) BSL Dec 2012  ( 4 inches away, barring any major setbacks I should get there by Sept/Oct :D)

6) Get my moisture/protein balance in check! i.e. incorporate more protein (scratch that, seems like all my hair needs to remain balanced is a light protein weekly, i.e. ORS Replenishing Conditioner)

7) Purchase a high quality dryer, caruso steam rollers and three Hercules Sagemann seamless combs. (got the dryer, caruso steam roller purchase is coming soon, not sure if i really need or want seamless combs anymore...)

8) Continue to abstain from direct heat (going well esp since i have started doing twistouts and flexirod sets)

9) Deep condition with heat more often (hair feels better than when I dc without) (did this every wash day for the yr except for the last 2 as i was in trini)

10) Remain consistent with all the healthy hair practices I have been doing, i.e. dusting regularly, deep conditioning, proper detangling, satin scarves etc (on track)

11) Continue to give my nape the tlc it needs (my nape is continuing to fill out quite nicely)

12) Stay on track with my vitamins and water intake! (work in progress)

I think I've been staying on track so far, which is surprising considering I had both moisture and protein overload within the last 6 months. Happy for the progress I've made, and looking forward to the progress to come!

Coming Soon

So in keeping with my previous posts on my hair boredom, I have decided that in addition to my clip ins and twistouts I now want to add braid extensions into the mix. I have NEVER in my life worn these before...due to my hang ups over fake hair/ other people's hair being on my head lol. I'm pretty much over that now. I was torn between senegalese twists and kinky twists but after much googling and youtube vids the senegalese won out.

Senegalese Twists With Curled Ends

Senegalese Twists With Straight Ends

My hair plan for the next few months will be to continue alternating my twist outs, flexi sets and roller sets until my prospective graduation date. If I do graduate in May I will flat iron my roots since I'll be 10 weeks post, then put the senegelese braids in after my graduation weekend. If I don't graduate -_- I'll just skip the heat pass and do the twists around that same time. The idea is to wear these twists for at least 6 weeks, then relax. This means I should relax at about 19 weeks post. This way I stretch longer with low manipulation so breakage is reduced, as well as I get to switch things up and ease my hair boredom. The most helpful video I found so far is embedded below.

The process looks simple enough. Before I started relaxing my hair I wore it in box braids and two strand twists that I did myself so I do have some practice with this type of hairstyle. The prospect of getting these has me really looking forward to May! I hope I can hold out on putting them in before then.

(All images taken from Google Search Results)

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Twist Out with Perm Rods: First Try

After all the running around of the last week or so I really did not feel like sitting under my mother's ancient dryer for hours with a roller set, so I decided to try a twist out. I deep conditioned my hair with ORS for about 2 hrs without heat (i fell asleep), then detangled under the shower with V05 moisture milks. I also applied some Roux Porosity control. I really need to take a moment and say how much better my hair feels when I use ORS compared to Humectress. ORS is really everything my hair needs and more! I used ORS HAIRepair Anti Breakage Creme as my leave in and let my hair air dry a bit before putting in the twists. I didn't do proper parts, just sectioned hair at random, twisted and placed perm rods on the ends. I let them dry overnight (they were suprisingly easy to sleep with) and took them down in the morning as I had some errands to run.

Twists with perm rods still in

Twists after Takedown

It was then that I realized I had made two mistakes, 1 was that when I ran out of hair while doing a twist I would split the bigger section of the twist into two so that I could finish the twist. This caused tangles during takedown and I lost a little hair (see below). In retrospect I should have either redid the entire twist and split the section of hair more evenly, or just stopped twisting at that point and applied the perm rod. I also took some of them out before they had dried properly so the curls didn't come out as defined and were a bit frizzy.

                                     Hair that I lost, not much but could have been prevented!

                           Frizzy curls at back of hair in comparison to more defined curls at front

So I decided to do a curly updo, and get some practice in for Ebony's challenge.

I LOVE how this turned out! Its a great low manipulation/protective style as I don't redo the curls every night. At night I pineapple my hair, tie my scarf around my edges only and sleep on my stomach lol. Because my hair is pinned up it doesn't brush against my clothing, and it also put a stop in my HIH Syndrome as if I were to play with the curls I would mess them up. I've also gotten a few compliments and my mom especially liked it. It was so funny when I walked past her after takedown, she was on the phone so she couldn't speak but her eyes kept following my hair around lol.

Will definitely do this style again, especially later in my stretch. Its also a great style for winter, as its way more exciting that a regular bun or ponytail but would still keep my hair up and off my coats and scarves.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

DIY: Clip In Extensions (Pic Heavy)

I made the decision early on that I wanted hair extensions this year. Last year my carnival prep was pretty laid back and I wanted to go all out this time and do my costume justice. I had asked for opinions on some ebay clip ins a while back, and I would definitely recommend AGAINST using that particular seller. The wefts were incredibly thin and they were also shedding. They looked nothing like the extensions pictured in the posting.

After some youtube-ing I decided to try my hand at creating my own clip in extensions, and they turned out great!

What you'll need:
1-2 packs of hair of your choice
wig clips
weave needle
weave thread
regular thread *
regular needle *

*I'll explain why i needed these in a little while

I selected Outre's SOL Yaki hair in 1B which was pretty much a jet black color. I chose 14 inch wefts which hit me at bsl/mbl. I bought 2 packs of this hair and used about a pack and a half for my clip ins. They cost me about $25 per pack at my local beauty supply store. I had my reservations about using this brand, as I thought it was too cheap to be real human hair but I was able to use a curling iron on it with no negative effects so...I guess it really was 100% human hair.

I initially tripled my wefts, as I knew ulovemegz had doubled hers and my hair is thicker than hers is, but that still wasn't thick enough :S. I ended up having to quintuple them...(if thats the right phrase). I parted my hair into two halves then measured the ear to ear distance at the back of my head. Using those measurements I created two quintupled wefts for the lower back portion and two tripled wefts for the upper back portion. I didn't want to quintuple the upper wefts because the seams turned out pretty thick and I thought it may have shown. The two tripled wefts were clipped next to each other at the crown of my head as opposed to one above the other. By doing this they 'intersected' with the front half of my hair so I didn't have to make as many clip ins for the front of my hair.

You can see below where I used the black thread to sew the wefts together, with the weave needle. I then sewed the wig clips on using a regular needle and regular (brown) thread. This was because the weave needle was too big to fit through the holes in the wig clips. I made sure to pass the needle through a few extra times as the regular thread is thinner than weaving thread.

Below are the thinner tripled up wefts. (In the process of acrylic nail removal so my fingers are ratty looking, hence the blur lol)

I then made three 1 inch clip ins for the front half of my head, these were also quintuple wefts. One for the left side and two for the right as I usually wear my hair with a side part. Two of them are pictured below, one clearly still has some leftover curl... 

I curled the ends a bit as I thought they looked too thin when straight, as well as I'm not really a fan of dead straight hair. Pic of the ends can be seen below...these pieces also still hav a lil bit of their curl, they don't look that awful once they're properly brushed out.

I loved my clip in pieces! I got a lot of compliments on them and many people thought it was my hair. Even my friend who saw me clipping them in said 'Roanna that really looks like your hair!' They took a lot of 'jammin' as I whipped my hair all over on both Carnival monday and Tuesday but at no point in time did they ever loosen up or feel like they were going to fall out. They are also still in a good enough condition to be reused, as a matter of fact all the pics for this post were taken after I had already worn them. 

I would definitely recommend this hair for anyone lookin for a cheap weave, as I didn't have any problems with shedding or tangling, and it was a great match in terms of texture. Hopefully this post was informative, if anyone has questions or needs more info feel free to leave a comment below! 

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Carnival Hair

Just a couple pics of how I wore my hair for Trinidad Carnival 2012. I was very pleased with the durability of my clip ins and will try to do a step by step post soon on how I made them.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Quick Update

Didn't plan to do one til I relaxed again, but i got my hair flat ironed as part of my carnival prep so I figured why not.

The front is pinned up in pincurls...and my hemline is slightly tilted b/c i'm holding the camera but I got about an inch since my Dec trim. Again using my mole as a marker, you an see the diff in the comparison pics below. 

I've been wearing my hair dwn since I've been home, and it feels pretty surreal that my hair is brushing against and between my shoulder blades.... I do need a little trim..prob due to all the ends that snapped off after my protein overload but nothing a dusting won't fix. However i left my shears in DC so that'll have to wait til I get back. 

Sidenote: Looking at these pics made me realize that i wear my bra really really BSL looks like its also my MBL :S

Thats all for now folks, about to head out to another party, more detailed posting on my salon experience will be coming soon!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

I've been featured!

Hey guys just wanted to draw attention to a new hair blog n the block, as well as the feature the blogger did on myelf. Every week a different blogger is featured and imo its pretty cool as you get to know more about everyone's hair journey and their opinions on haircare. So go on over and check out My Hair Grows Too !

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Still having breakage! Advice sought!

So I thought my protein overload breakage was over. I did the wet hair strand test and although my hair could still do with a little more elasticity it no longer snaps right away. Also I've been having a lot less breakage when combing or manipulating it when dry.

Usually I wash my hair every 5 days or so, 5 days if I've been working out and every 7 days if I havent. When I go longer than 5 days it becomes necessary for me to m&s. Friday night while m&s-ing my ends I started to see breakage, breakage that was coming from the ends of my hair only. When I manipulated my hair the next day this breakage didn't happen, not even if I pulled on my ends. However when I applied moisturizer to them again....I again immediately started seeing little broken off pieces.

So now I'm it possible that i'm having moisture overload on the ends of my hair only? While the rest of the hair strand is apparently balanced? It seems to be the only logical answer....I think if it was protein overload the moisturizing would do my ends good not cause them to practically melt off the end of my hair strand.

Any advice? Opinions?

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Versatile Blogger Award

Thank you Ebony (Longing for Length) for this award, its my first since entering the blogging world :). Ebony has one of my fave hair blogs. I think of her as a hair cheerleader of sorts because she's always very supportive and encouraging with her posts and comments. If you haven't yet go on over there and check her blog out!

According to the requirements of the award I must:
•  Nominate 15 other bloggers
•  Inform my nominees
•  Share 7 random facts about myself
•  Thank the one who nominated me and provide a link back to them in this post
•  Add a picture of the award to this post

7 Random Facts About Myself

1) I LOVE soda, especially pepsi and ginger ale. I have definitely paid the price for it, with a lot of lovely jiggles surfacing around my mid section *sad face*. I have been trying to quit this addiction for awhile now but have never made it past 7 days without caving and drinking one. smh.

2) I am a huge fan of carnival..and call myself a Carnival baby. I have been to the biggest and best (Trini Carnival), Labor Day in Brooklyn, Carnival in DC, Miami Carnival and Cropover in Barbados...Yeh, I get around lol. Below left, Trini Carnival 2011, on the right myself and Alison Hinds Barbados Cropover 2010.

3) I love to travel. When I first came to the US I went home three times a year, more recently I've been trading in my trini trips for trips to other islands. I've been to Barbados once and Jamaica twice and I hope to make it either back to Jamaica or to St Lucia sometime this year.

4) I am due to have orthonagthic surgery in the near future (google it).

5) I'm currently on the cabbage soup diet in an effort to lose a quick 7 or so lbs before my trip home on Wednesday

6) Reading is my no. 1 fave thing to do...I can easily finish a book per day and its worse now that I have my kindle. Amazon's pretty happy, my bank a/c? not so much

7) I am a huge Grey's Anatomy fan, to the point that my mother no longer attempts to call me on Thursday nights between 9 and 10pm. lol

Now to tag 15 bloggers...

Monday, February 6, 2012

Chasing away those Hair-orexic Blues

So I did some thinking and I believe I have come up with a way of distracting myself from my non-full-apl-yet hair.  

First off I made mental note of everything hair-related that I need to be thankful for,

1) My hair is retaining its thickness as it gets longer. Based on posts I've come across on blogs and the hair sites this is something that a lot of people struggle with so I should be glad that my hair has been doing well in this aspect.

2) Although I suffered from both moisture and protein overload in the last 6 months I have not suffered any major setbacks, i.e. huge trims because of it

3) So my hair didn't make it to full APL on schedule...and what.....i'm inches past where i was when I first started my HHJ. It may be growing slowly but its still growing

I think that I've been focusing too much on length checks, as well as I need to spice things up because I really am bored with my hair. I've already tried switching up my hair color with rinses but clearly that hasn't been enough.

So I decided to put myself on a personal protective styling challenge.

At least three times a week I will do protective styles that are not buns or ponytails. These styles all have to protect the front of my hair. I saw a few split ends in that section so apparently in addition to being boring my bun and ponytail routine was messing with my ends. The front is shorter than the back so the ponytail holder usually rubs against the ends of my front sections. Hopefully I'll retain more length from varying my protective styles. I wish I had figured this out months ago as I always wondered why when I dusted I had to dust more in the front than in the back. O I know!

I will also be alternating my protective styling with clip in extensions starting in March, when it warms up a bit and my hair won't be rubbing against my scarves and coat.

I think that the protective style challenge and the clip ins will take my mind off length and also take me out of my hair funk...wish me luck guys!

Saturday, February 4, 2012


Bored with my hair....and suffering from hair-orexia. I am well aware that my hair is longer than its been in years, but I still think it isn't long enough. I was supposed to be full APL by now :(

I relaxed today, as my texlaxed edges were irritating the heck out of me and I definitely had less growth in these 9 weeks that I did the last time I relaxed, which was at 6 weeks post. I have only myself to blame as I slacked off on my vitamins, my castor oil AND my water intake.

About to go watch some 'hair porn' (youtube hair videos) to try and get myself out of this funk.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Hair Blather

Just an update on what's been going on with my hurr!

1) I couldnt enter the rollerset competition because I apparently left the battery charger for my camera at Trinidad :S. And of course the camera died on me as soon as I started taking pics of my last roller set. O well....I'm coming for you guys on the next challenge!

2) Speaking of rollersets... the last 2 I did have been the best ever! I started putting in my rollers in the 'backwards method' which wrked wonders on my puffy new growth and I've also been using this Nexxus spray as a second leave in. It contains cones but dare I say my hair seems to like products with cones so I am not too concerned about that. More on my wash day in the next post.

3) I think my protein overload is pretty much over. I'm still seeing a couple broken hairs every now and again but its nowhere as bad as say about 10 days ago. I inspected my ends after my last rollerset and it seems like I don't have a setback (thankfully) but I will know for sure after my next relaxer

4) My next relaxer is a little over a week away and its soooooo hard to resist the urge to relax right now! I have to keep reminding myself that if I relax before that 10 week mark I will be screwing with my 'dont-relax-til-graduation-plans'. I timed my relaxers so I would relax at 10 weeks post in time for Carnival and then at 11 weeks post for graduation in May.

5)Speaking of Carnival, I ordered my clip ins

I know they won't be the most luxurious based on the price but I'm hoping that they are a good enough quality to serve their 2-day purpose.

6)Picnik is free til April guys! If you ever wanted to make a hair collage, fancy up your current hair pics, or make photo projects for non hair purposes now is the time. I used picnik for most of the pics on my blog, its great for putting in borders, watermarks, blurred out faces etc and i also used it for the current banner I have at the top of the blog.