Saturday, 30 March 2013

Hair Meetup: Naturals In The City 5


There's a hair Meetup coming up in Lagos, organised by Natural Nigerian ; it is called Naturals in the city (NITC). This is the 5th edition and I plan to be in attendance for the first time. If you are in Lagos and would like to purchase (natural) products for your hair (and body) there will be various vendors in attendance. I believe it's not just for ladies (and gents!) with natural hair, if you are relaxed, transitioning and everything else do come along.

See event details in the poster below;

Thursday, 14 March 2013

New Product: ORS Lock & Twist Gel

I happened to stumble on this product a few weeks ago at the supermarket but I wanted to research the ingredients and read reviews online before buying (important tip when selecting products:first, learn to read through the ingredients to determine if it has any harsh or undesirable ingredients. Also, read reviews to know how others have found the product although bearing in mind that what works for some may not work for you).

When I finally decided to try it out it was no where to be found in the same store and they seemed to have no knowledge of the product and could not provide any information on whether it would be back in stock. That's the thing with hair products around these parts, apart from the usual hair relaxers and grease, there is no guarantee that the product available one day will be in stock when you visit again. Anyway, while in another supermarket, I saw this in the hair aisle and promptly snatched it up. It cost N720 for 16.25oz (460g), it was priced at N1000 at the first store I spotted it.

Product details:
Ingredients: Water (aqua), Coconut Milk (cocos nucifera extract), Soybean oil (Glycine Soya), PVP, Polyquaternium 37, Propyl Paraben, Methyl Paraben, DMDM Hydantoin, Propylene Glycol, Fragrance (parfum), Sucrose.

Okay, from my research into the ingredients I discovered that this is a good product. it is not all natural; Ingredients such as propyl Paraben and methyl Paraben may be of concern to someone who avoids using parabens.

My experience:
This is the only gel in my product stash and so far I have used this for a braid-out since I am still learning how to do two strand twists. I used it after moisturising and sealing as usual, It produced reasonable hold when I undid the cornrows. Most importantly to me, it did not have a drying effect in my hair, infact it felt well moisturised so much so that I did not have to moisturise and seal as often as I normally do. This product will very likely remain a staple for me because it is easy (well kind of) to get hold of when I run out and it seems to agree with my hair.

Saturday, 2 March 2013

Big chop or not

...that's the question I had someone ask. She said she intended to go natural but was weary of cutting off her hair.

My answer:

A big chop, or low cut as we commonly call it around here is not necessary. If you feel you do not look good with short hair, learn to manage your two textures and cut off relaxed ends gradually. The way you transition is a personal decision and should be one you feel comfortable with. When transitioning over whatever period of time it is important to know that the new growth needs to be cared for to avoid breakage at the line of demarcation.

Do you have any tips for transitioning? Please do share!

Happy Growing!

Hair Story and Choices

I mentioned in my previous posts about my hair cut that I planned to commit to being relaxer free for 6 months, well right now I plan to stay natural. I am inspired by a lot of the naturalistas I have come across on blogs, internet hair forums and YouTube. I am really curious as to how I can manage my natural texture now that I have more information about healthy hair care.


My natural hair was quite full and thick, my mum made sure I got regular shampoos and never had any form of heat applied. I had my first relaxer in almost 10 years ago, after pestering my mum for almost 2 years. I remember my first term in secondary school a lot of the girls had relaxed hair and I began to pine to have mine relaxed. You see, I thought relaxed hair was the way to go, it could be combed easily, worn down and most importantly to me they didn't have to get their hair woven almost weekly like I still had to. Initially I stopped having my hair woven and later I wore single plaits done myself without extensions from time to time.

From my first relaxer to the last one in November I almost always got burnt scalp. I always dreaded going to the salon to get my hair relaxed. Although, I did do some wrong things most commonly, relaxing immediately after taking down braids or weaves. This was because I was clueless as to how to stretch my relaxer. Another mistake I made once was colouring my hair immediately after relaxing, the colour didn't catch and I began to experience major breakage.

In recent years I abused heat; My love for heat started when I was studying for my masters, before I located a hair stylist I bought myself a blow dryer and hair straightener to achieve the straight look frizz free. Even when I found a stylist, my visits were mostly for relaxer touch ups or once in a while weaves. When I started full time employment my heat abusing got worse, a lot of times I straightened my ends DAILY! I had a signature straight/bob, neck/shoulder length hair look going on and one time I got braids done my colleagues thought it was someone else sat at my desk before they saw my face lol. I always wore my hair down, in spring, summer, autumn or winter, my hair was down.

My bad practices and neglect were enough to keep me stagnated at neck/shoulder length. Now I've done a complete turn around, taking better care of my hair. Early on when I started my research into healthy hair care I noticed a lot of ladies who would grow long healthy relaxed hair and then suddenly begin to transition back to natural. This got me thinking and peaked my interest in my natural hair.

I know my texture is not going to be identical to someone else's but I am excited to find out what it is and learn to take proper care of it.