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Tuesday, 6 August 2013

July review and August goals

I have been completely MIA this month because been focused on writing my PhD thesis which is due in a Month and still soo much to write so please forgive me! I have been keeping up with my hair care and hope to start giving updates on a more regular basis again. But for now on to the goals of the month past and the month to come!

So how did I do?
  • Drink >1.5L of water a day - WINNER!! Not always more but I hit 1.5L nearly every day of July (weekends were slightly harder but having an app for my phone seriously helps!)
  • No product purchases - WINNER!! For the first time in a long time I managed no purchases for an extended period of time - sooooo proud of myself for this one! Though as soon as July was over I hit that BSS store and bought some needed extras for my regimen...
  • Use up at least one product (bottle or tub) - WINNER!!! Finally finished my tub of Organics Carrot moisturiser!
  • Exercise 5 days a week with at least 2 trips to gym - FAILED -but only just. I definitely upped my workout schedule but still not quite there...
  • 2x twist/braid outs - WINNER!! Loving this for my hair!!! Messy curly buns all the way!
  • Apply castor oil to scalp 3 times a week - WINNER!! I think this is definitely helping the hair growth/thickness especially my nape!
  • Try a co-wash - HALLELUJAH WINNER!!! Best thing I've ever done for my hair. I'm royally annoyed I didn't start doing this earlier!! Now co-wash once a week and shampoo once a week.
  • Read at least a couple of pages of a book everyday - FAILED. I started strong on this but then the love for the book I was reading faded hard!!! 
75% success for the month of July and I'm really proud of the product related ones as I am seriously trying to stop my product junkie ways...I shouldn't need to buy anything again till the end of the year at the earliest as all my staples are fully stocked and just going to try and use up all the extras!

So goals for August : 
  • Drink 2L of water a day on weekdays 1.5L on weekends.
  • Eat a portion of fruit and veg each per day
  • Use up at least one hair product
  • Exercise 5 days a week with at least 2 trips to the gym
  • Read at least a couple of pages of a book everyday
  • Say the Rosary once a week
Good luck to all for the month of August (the best month of the year as it's my birthday month!)

Tuesday, 2 July 2013

June review and July goals

Another month has passed and the first month in which I set goals....here's how they went:

  • Moisturise and seal in sections each evening with finger combing to detangle only - WINNER!! - this is revolutionising my hair :)
  • Drink > 1.5 L of water a day - FAILED but definitely increased my intake purely because of setting the            goal in the first place
  • Use up at least 1 product - If sachets count then we can call this a winner lol 
  • Buy no more products! - FAILED HORRIBLY I tried, I tried so hard but alas failed miserably though some were purchases of products nearly finished and were on sale and I just can't miss a deal!
  • Steam my DCs - WINNER!! definitely sticking with this one!
  • Protective styling minimum 5 days a week - I think this was a winner though didn't keep a massive check of it but for most days that I can remember my hair was in a protective style for the majority of the day
  • Exercise 5 days a week with at least 2 trips to gym - FAILED but only because I got a bad cold that meant barely getting out of bed let alone getting to the gym!
  • Finally finish Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's Americanah and start on Chinua Achebe's There Was a Country! - WINNER with finishing Americanah (which was excellent!) but not started There Was a Country yet..that is still to come.

So onto goals for July....
  • Drink > 1.5 L of water a day
  • No product purchases!!!!!!!
  • Use up at least one product (bottle or tub)
  • Exercise 5 days a week with at least 2 trips to gym
  • 2x twist/braid outs 
  • Apply Castor oil to scalp 3 times a week
  • Try a co-wash
  • Read at least a couple pages of a book everyday
Good luck to all for the month of July!!

Saturday, 29 June 2013

Wash days (and Royal Ascot extras!)

Hello hello! Busy busy times !

I've had two wash days that have been fairly similar -

  1. Apply mix of oils (JBCO, coconut, grapeseed) to scalp/hair plus Organics Carrot oil before heading to the gym for a session.
  2. Once back from the gym I added a mix of Organics hair mayo and CON Intensive Conditioning Treatment to hair for 10-15 mins with hooded dryer.
  3. Then rinse that out in shower and shampoo - 1st wash day used ORS Creamy Aloe followed by Elasta QP Creme Shampoo. 2nd wash day I used ORS Invigorating Shampoo followed by Keracare Hydrating Detangling Shampoo. With the 2nd wash day that happened on Weds my hair felt soft but slightly still oily before the Keracare but then I worried it was a bit too dry after...
  4. Tea rinse wirh green/peppermint tea mix followed by Herbal Essences conditioner on top
  5. Rinse all that out after a couple minutes then apply Paul Mitchell Super Skinny Daily Treatment which made my hair feel loads better. 
  6. Deep conditioned both times using my steamer with Keracare Humecto/ORS Nourishing Conditioner mix. The 2nd wash day I used the remainder of an ORS Nourishing conditioner pak that I had stored in the fridge and I am not sure if that could be a reason why my hair didn't feel quite as soft as experienced before even with the steamer or if was just not going to be a soft, smooth and silky wash no matter what.....any thoughts?
  7. Soaked up lots of excess water and air dried to about 60% dry before applying leave in moisturiser and Paul Mitchell Super Skinny Serum. I used Organics Leave in liquid mayo on first wash day and Neutrogena Triple Moisture on second. 
  8. Normally I air dry with aid of blow drying on cool if need be but on the 2nd wash day I twisted my in 4 sections very loosely just to give a bit of texture to my hair and then when cross wrapped hair before bed. Really liked the results and wore my hair down the next day for an induction day!


 

All in all I think my hair is just about ok but was slightly concerned about the hair loss in the shower but I don't know if it's a lot a lot and something I should be really trying to address or if it's an amount that's normal? Below is pic of hair lost from shower (I stick them on the wall as I catch them in my fingers!) and from detangling....any thoughts? There was also an annoying amount of breakage which I'm still not sure how to address!


And just for fun added some photos from my day at Royal Ascot where I spent the day feeling like a celeb! :) 


As it's coming to end of June look out for the next post on July goals and just how many of my June goals I failed on!! 

Till then, happy hair and health to all!!!

Saturday, 15 June 2013

Relaxer touch up 13.5 weeks post

Hello hello!

So mid-week I got my hair relaxed by my mother. After my longest stretch ever it was kind of a traumatic experience and has taught me a lot about my hair and stretching. So this is how it went:


  1. The night before I detangled my hair in a process that took roughly 2 hours and still wasn't perfect - more of that to come.
  2. As we were getting ready to set up I coated my hair with JCBO and Organics Carrot Oil Creme and my mum coated my scalp in sections with Vaseline. 
  3. My mum had my sectioned in 4 main parts and started applying relaxer (Organics Olive Oil Conditioning Relaxer in Normal strength) to the back sections of my head leaving the nape and edges of my head to last. 
  4. After smoothing the relaxer in, we rinsed out my hair and washed out the relaxer with neutralizing shampoo. 
  5. I then applied Aphogee 2 min reconstructor and rinsed, followed by Paul Mitchell Super Skinny Daily Treatment and rinse.
  6. Then a full application of ORS Hair Mayonnaise and sat under steamer for 15 mins.  My hair was a full on tangled mess....I nearly cried with the amount of hair I saw swimming away in the bath and that came out during the detangling process. 
  7. Once my hair was finally detangled and free of conditioner I applied Organics liquid leave in and Paul Mitchell Super Skinny Serum in sections and blow dried my hair in sections. My hair wasn't bone straight but still a bit of texture in the roots which is good!
    Blow-dried straggly ends! Please note my cheapskate makeshift length check shirt lol!
  8. Once the hair was dried, still in sections I applied ORS Olive Oil Heat Protection Serum and flat ironed my hair in small sections on the lowest setting of my TRESemme Salon Professional 2066U Ceramic Styler 230 Hair Straighteners.
    Flat-ironed scraggly uneven ends
  9. After seeing the state of my ends depends definite length retention I snipped snipped to remotely try and tidy them up...still not great as you can see but better that before!
     Post trim ends - not perfect but better, will be excited to see length check again in a few months!!

So what did I learn from this experience....
- I really need to keep new growth highly moisturised. I can't help but think my sicky wash day before my touch up meant that my growth really wasn't looked after properly and hence serious tangling because of it's dry condition.
- In my next stretch no matter how long, really needs to be moisture moisture focused keeping the protein balance.
- Doing two protein treatments after the relaxer seemed like a great idea because of the severity of the relaxer process but I definitely should have followed it up with or mixed in a moisturising deep conditioner as my hair felt rather hard until it was flat ironed. 

Lessons have been learnt and it's now time to move forward into this next stretch. I will be working out to the point of heavy sweat twice a week so will now encompass two wash days into my week but likely only one will be my normal wash day routine whilst the other will be a shortened version - posts to follow on that. 
Definitely enjoying having no new growth to deal with right now even if my hair is a little on the flat side after the relaxer and flat iron but the fact I was able to retain some length and have healthier looking ends make me happy!!! I've been keeping my hair off my shoulders and moisturising and sealing lightly before bed. 

Till next time, happy hair to all!!

Monday, 10 June 2013

Wash Day

Hello hello!

Come this last Friday, I was sick as a puppy dog but still fought to carry out my normal wash day. The last time I was this ill coupled with food poisoning, my hair was the last thing on my mind and boy did it punish me for that!!! This time around my lovely boyfriend saved the day and this is how....

  1. Pre-pooed with mix of shea butter, JBCO and coconut oil on new growth and Organics Carrot oil creme (to try and use up - still some left!) and grapeseed oil on the hair length whilst sat in bubble bath made by the boyf!
  2. After a good long soak and all the water drained, I attempted to stand and shampoo my hair with Elasta QP Creme Conditioning Shampoo......this is where it all started to go wrong! With a half a head full of shampoo (I managed to do one half already) I found I could barely stand I was that weak...thankfully I have a detachable shower head over the bath set up and an amazing boyfriend who came to my rescue and finished rinsing out my shampoo for me whilst I sat in the bath like a child!
  3. He stuck around and helped me with my tea rinse (green tea/peppermint mix).
  4. and addition and rinse of Herbal Essences Hello Hydration followed by Paul Mitchell Super Skinny Daily Treatment.
  5. With help getting my sorry behind out of the bath I soaked up excess water with a towel and applied ORS Replenishing Conditioner throughout my hair and sat under my steamer for 30 mins with tomato soup waiting for me!
  6. Let my hair cool down for however long it took Nadal to win a set against Djokovic in the French Open semi finals then rinsed out the conditoner following a quick detangle with my shower comb. I always rinse out my conditioner with my head over the side of the bath because I am not one for getting in and out of the shower.
  7. I soaked up excess water with a towel then finger combed my hair back into it's natural position of going down from head to my back (because hanging over the side of the bath turns it all upside down!) and then wrapped in one of those super absorbency turban towels for half hour. 
  8. I applied my leave ins of Organics Leave in liquid mayo and Paul Mitchell Super Skinny Serum to my hair in 4 sections and detangled.
  9. My detangling wasn't the best I've ever done but luckily my hair was so soft and really not that all of a tangled mess so I did the best I could with my weak self and then air dried with the scarf method whilst watching the rest of the tennis.

Hair before (with week of moisturising and sealing build up) and air dried after. I'm always in my dressing gown on wash days!


13 weeks of new growth!

 These are of my hair 2 days after wash day. I'm trying to moisturise and seal with minimal amount of moisturiser as my hair still feeling pretty damn soft but will start applying castor oil to my scalp nightly in prep for relaxer on Wednesday. Will likely be trimming my skinny skinny ends also but excited to see length progess before I do!


What I learnt from this wash day is that having a regimen that you don't really have to think about and just know what you've got to do at each step is a Godsend when you can barely hold yourself up! Yes I likely cut corners - only one possibly half arsed lather with the shampoo which I think showed with the ever so slight residue feeling on my hair and minimum effort detangle but all in all I was happy that my hair got some much needed moisture (steaming is like manna from heaven!). I made the decision that I will end my stretch this week after I washed my hair, having a feel around my new growth so was unable to do a Aphogee 2 min treatment in preparation but I will of course tailor my subsequent post relaxer wash days to try and counter-act the chemicals! But till then, I hope everyone had a lovely weekend and much less stressful wash days!!

Tuesday, 4 June 2013

June goals!

My goals for the month of June are:



  • Moisturise and seal in sections each evening with finger combing to detangle only
  • Drink > 1.5 L of water a day 


  • Use up at least 1 product
  • Buy no more products!





  • Steam my DCs
  • Protective styling minimum 5 days a week
  • Exercise 5 days a week with at least 2 trips to gym




  • Finally finish Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's Americanah and start on Chinua Achebe's There Was a Country!






    • Will likely be ending my stretch in 1 - 2 weeks so will be back to freshly relaxed hair soon enough...actually not sure how I feel about that. Really enjoying see what my hair looks like at this point - feeling my first tight coil actually made me squeal! But at the same time the density of the new growth especially at the back of my head is getting slightly taxing, especially as I want to up my exercise regimen....but we shall see!

      Good luck achieving all your goals!!


      Monday, 3 June 2013

      Me and my hair

      Who am I and what am I doing with my life?
      So my name is Andrea, I'm 25, Nigerian born but living in London for last 22 years of my life! I am currently writing up my thesis for a PhD in Neuroscience after working towards it for the last 4 years. Once the PhD is done I'll be going into teaching because I'm passionate about getting young people into science! 

      What is my hair like?
      My hair is relaxed and has been since I was maybe 8 years old. My relaxer is touched up by my mother and there have been times when I would have it done with only 6 weeks passed since the last one. I obviously now know that is a big fat NO-NO and am currently on my longest stretch of 12 weeks and counting. I have been slowly seeing the health of my hair improve as I started implementing changes to my routine. Biggest and simplest things I've done? - reduced the heat and started wearing my hair up and off my shoulders and ends tucked in!! I got over my mindset of buns not being feminine and only when my new growth was too much too deal with (which when I didn't know how to look after my hair was about 6-7 weeks post!). Now I love a good bun and pinterest is my new best friend for ideas and inspiration!

      Oct 2012 - Not pretty so slowly but surely snip snip snip!

      June 2013 12 weeks post relaxer 2 day old air dryed hair after M/S

      May 2013 11 weeks post relaxer freshly blow dried on cool hair
      May 2013 11 weeks post relaxer freshly washed, blow dried on cool then  straightened hair


      Why am I on a healthy hair journey?
      Simply to have healthy, full and long hair! Health of my hair comes first but I would be lying if I said I didn't want hair that falls down my back.

      Why am trying to improve wellness and mindfulness?

      I am a person that suffers stress easily, struggles to let go and has a tendency to build up things in my head so out of proportion with the real issue. As I get older I want to keep a check on all of this and fine tune me so I'm calmer, happier and just more at peace with myself and the world around me.