From the very first day I started my natual hair journey I was keen to get my hands on a set of Curlformers. I remember watching a Curlfomers video tutorial by Naptural85 on Youtube, and dreaming of being able to achieve the same gorgeous bouncy curls that she had. Fast forward two years later and they finally made their way into my haircare tools stash when I decided to treat myself over the Christmas period. Besides Straighteners, these are my most expensive hair tool, hence the delay and constant debates as to whether or not they would be worth the investment. Well I’m pleased to say these are going to get their fair share of use, I absolutely love them!
Now I have to be honest with you, I didn’t quite achieve the results I had hoped for on my first attempt at using these. Hubby decided last minute that we would be going out for dinner which meant my plan to dry for at least ten hours was reduced to six, and we all know what happens when you try to style semi-dry natural hair #Thefrizztakeover!
On a normal day I would be disappointed with working with semi-dry hair especially for hairstyles which are supposed to give sleek and smooth results, but my love for Curlformers truly came when I threw my hair into a bun and saw just how thick and voluminous it made my hair appear to be. Fine haired girls rejoice!
So if you’re still on the fence about these let me tell you they are awesome and will be featuring on the blog again very soon!
Time after time I get questions about hair dryness and readers sharing techniques they have tried in order to up moisture retention and prevent dry and brittle hair. Truth is, there are so many dry hair culprits, some we can’t always avoid e.g. weather, genetics etc, but have you ever considered the fact that dryness can also be self-inflicted? Here’s my two pence on eight reasons as to why your hair always seem to be dry…
1 – USING OILS/BUTTERS AS MOISTURISERS
Whilst oils & butters are indeed moisturising, their main function is to act as an emollient or occlusive. Emollients are known to help soften the hair/skin and encourage slip, whilst occlusives help to prevent moisture loss by creating a thin film over the skin/hair to help create a barrier against water loss. What oil and butters cannot do however is hydrate, and this is what dry hair needs, hydration. Products such as leave-in conditioners, milks and moisturisers, which state water as their primary ingredient, are better suited to help relieve dryness by feeding the hair with the number one source of moisture… Water!
2 – SKIPPING ON YOUR DEEP CONDITIONING
I know how easy it is to skip a deep conditioning session, lets face it washday can be a drag! But this step truly is important and should be done at the very least once a month. Deep conditioners work their magic by either adsorbing* or penetrating the strands of our hair, with nutrients that will keep our hair moisturised and in great shape in between wash days. There are a whole load of moisturising deep conditioners that will set your hair up for a good week or two, and some only need a few minutes to work their magic [upcoming post on this soon!].
*Adsorption – (often confused with absorption/penetration) is the process of molecules accumulating on the surface of your hair to soften, moisturise and condition hair strands)
3 – MOISTURISE BUT NO ‘SEAL’?
Especially here in the UK, where it’s pretty much winter all year round, indoor heating is almost always crunked up. This means any moisture applied to your hair will quickly evaporate if not locked in by some type of sealant, i.e an oil or butter. If after sealing you still find your hair to be on the dry side, you can use a super light leave-in spray to refresh your hair mid day. I also have a post on the LOC method; maximum moisture retention method – which has worked a treat in keeping my hair moisturised for longer periods of time.
4 – WATER INTAKE, DIET & NUTRITION
I’m sure you’ve heard this before but in all of its ‘clichéness’, it’s 100% true. Low water intake can affect your hair. The more hydrated you are internally, the more hydrated your external features will be. Before I learned to psych myself up about drinking 1l – 2l of water a day, I had to jump on a few phone apps to keep me on top of things i.e. [waterlogged & daily water free]. Now it’s second nature [*sips on some H2O!]
5 – PRODUCT BUILD UP
Probably the biggest culprit of all, our dear friend build up. Product buildup can occur right from the minute we have washed our hair and begin to apply a leave-in, moisturiser, oil etc. Now I’m not suggesting that you don’t layer on your products via methods such as the LOC/LCO method to encourage effective moisture retention, but be careful not to over do it. Oils and butters in particular do a great job of sealing in our moisture, but can also make it just as difficult for moisturisers to be re-absorbed.
6 – INVESTING IN QUALITY PRODUCTS
It’s super important to invest in products that actually do what they say they do, and do it pretty darn well! If a half decent moisturiser is used then your hair will do a half decent job at retaining moisture. It’s also worth looking into techniques such as the LOC method and baggying which help to keep your hair moisturised for longer.
7 – WHAT ABOUT YOUR ENDS?
With so much focus in the hairsphere on hair growth it can be quite easy to focus on your scalp and neglect your ends. The ends of our hair are the oldest and the most prone to dryness. If it helps, try to moisture your hair from the bottom up to ensure your ends are getting enough TLC.
8 – DOUBLING UP , STYLERS AS MOISTURISERS
The primary purpose of a styling product is not to moisturise your hair but to prepare it for a style which either defines your hair or provides some sort of hold. This type of product may contain less moisturising ingredients and whilst it may make your hair look and feel great, it may also be one of the reasons why your hair is not as moisturised as it should be. Why not moisturise your hair before applying your styling product, it could just be the moisture fix you need
I’m so happy to finally be able to share the results of my 6 month protective style challenge with you. Unlike any other challenge [check out the initial challenge video here] or length check I’ve done here on the blog, this one had me particularly nervous. There were a few occasions just before the official length check reveal, when I became slightly panicked by the thought of a set back. There’s no doubt I’m extremely happy things didn’t turn out that way.
I’m in the process of putting together a post on top tips for growth when protective styling, but until that is ready I have a new video up on YouTube showing my progress, as well sharing on the rules of the challenge that I followed and those that I didn’t.
One of hubbys biggest observations throughout the course of our courting period [7+ years], was that I wasn’t very experimental with my hair, at least when it came to hairstyles. Even going back as far as my relaxed hair days, photos bear witness to the fact that I lived in buns 95% of the time and very rarely left my hair out. My long time blog readers may even recall my 30 day hairstyle challenge, which was suggested by you know who [Hubby], and my older sister to force me into being more experimental!
Life with natural hair on the other hand has been a completely different ball game. From wedding hairstyle prep, to wigs, to twist outs, to updos and down dos, but one thing is for sure, the low sleek bun will ALWAYS be my first love!
Last year in November I reviewed the contents of a UK monthly subscription box service otherwise known as the Glowwbox. I had never been a fan of subscription services but knew that this was a KeraCare special edition box, so I was more than willing to give it a try. For those of you who don’t know I have a serious love for the KeraCare Natural Textures range and Butter cream moisturiser specifically, so I’m always open to try their products.
Fast forward four months and there are two products that I have not only repurchased but I’ve been using religiously almost every wash day! The KeraCare Hydrating Detangling Shampoo [UK, US] & KeraCare Humecto Creme Conditioner [UK, US].
Let’s start with the shampoo, the first time I used this I remember hoping my hair liked it because the smell upon opening the bottle alone was simply heavenly, I applied the shampoo as I always do to my scalp and began to rub it in with my finger pads. Whilst I wasn’t blown away at this point I did have a feeling it was a keeper, although my roots were saturated in shampoo there was an unexpected amount of slip and softness at my roots. The true test came when I rinsed the shampoo out of my hair, and waited a few minutes before applying the conditioner to observe how my hair felt. The results were amazing, no dryness or tangles, my scalp was clean, and to my surprise my strands felt exceptionally moisturised.
Besides how great my hair feels after using the shampoo, it’s worth noting it is a ph balanced sulfate-free shampoo [stated as having a ph of 6 on the bottle], it also contains some hydrolysed wheat protein for anyone looking for a shampoo which moisturises and also lightly strengthens the hair.
My love for the Humecto Creme Conditioner is just as strong, just like the shampoo it smells great and is highly moisturising. It melts onto the strands of my hair each and every time and the softness even before I throw on my Hair Therapy Wrap [UK, US] is evident. I’ve tried this conditioner with and without heat and whilst it works so much better when aided with heat, it’s still a keeper when used without.
I’ve had a hard time keeping you up to date on new products because when I love something I can’t help but use it over and over again! Going forward I’ve restricted myself to using these products just once a month to give way for other products! Nevertheless these two products are staples and I know I can always fall back on them.