FROM NATURAL TO BONE STRAIGHT, HOW TO ACHIEVE THE PERFECT DIY SILK PRESS

For the past couple of weeks I’ve had straight hair on my mind. I decided when I went natural that my first straightening session would be once I had hit my five-year natural landmark, but with the recent Instagram buzz of salons and stylists doing silk presses, I’m not sure I can wait that long.

My relaxed hair days saw a lot of heat usage, and whilst I can wholeheartedly say that I was often pleased with my hair straightening results, one thing is for sure, I could never master the at home salon finish, i.e. the bounce and free flow that would have you feeling like you were in a L’oreal ad [you know you’ve been there too!]

Well, if like myself you’ve climbed mountains and crossed valleys  tried and tried, and have yet to achieve that salon look at home, then this post may just be the beginning of your journey to silk press perfection!

What is a Silk Press?

A silk press is a modern-day version of the traditional press and curl. Instead of using a hot comb to press the hair a flat-iron is used, and instead of using products such as heavy oils/grease to press the hair, the silk press favours serums or very light oils. If done correctly a silk press will result in bouncy shiny hair which feels light and free-flowing.

FROM NATURAL TO BONE STRAIGHT, HOW TO ACHIEVE THE PERFECT DIY SILK PRESS

What you will need

A Clarifying Shampoo
A Hydrating Shampoo
A Deep Conditioner
A light Moisturiser/Leave-In
Heat Protectant Serum
Blow Dryer
Narrow-toothed Comb e.g Rat Tail Comb
Flat Iron/Straighteners

Method

1.Wash your hair with a clarifying shampoo. In order for you to achieve the bounce and free flow that silk presses give, you need to ensure your hair is clean and free of all product build up

2. Follow up with a hydrating shampoo to help restore a little moisture back into your hair, and also to ensure your hair has been cleaned thoroughly

3. Deep condition for 20 – 30 minutes. This will help to restore moisture back into the hair as well as increase elasticity. I spoke to a friend who works as a stylist and she advised on using a deep conditioner which is both moisturising and strengthening (protein), this will help to ensure that the hair is stronger and in a good condition before any heat is applied

4. If possible rinse the conditioner out with cool water, this is said to help seal in moisture and increase the shine in our hair

5. Apply a light leave-in/moisturiser to your hair. Dry hair is more susceptible to heat damage so this step is crucial

6. If your heat protectant doubles up as a serum apply a small amount to your hair at this stage. If not, only add your heat protectant and then blow dry your hair

7. Blow dry hair on low or medium heat

8. Add a few drops of your serum again to the strands of your hair (for shine and flow), and then use the comb chase method to straighten your hair in small sections.

FROM NATURAL TO BONE STRAIGHT, HOW TO ACHIEVE THE PERFECT DIY SILK PRESS

Comb Chase Method
In simple terms the comb chase method is a technique whereby you run a narrowly toothed comb through the strands of your hair whilst straightening/flat ironing. In most cases a rat tail comb is used, and this helps to stretch out your hair ensuring that you get smooth and straight results, example here.

So that’s it from me, I can’t wait to give this a try. When I do you’ll be the first to know about it! Don’t forget, practice makes perfect so if you don’t get the results you hope for the first time try again, who knows it could simply be a case of switching up your selection of products to help make all the difference.

5 HAIR GROWTH & RETENTION SECRETS OF WOMEN WITH WAIST LENGTH HAIR

A few weeks after cutting my hair to the lowest length I have ever had, my excitement at my boldness and new hair cut was suddenly drowned, by the realisation that my hair would not be long enough to wear in its natural state on my wedding day next year!

Now I love a well done weave, and could of course get a sew-in using hair similar to the texture of my natural hair, but how boring would that be? A hair growth challenge sounds a lot more exciting and that’s exactly what I’ll be doing for the new year, challenging myself to some serious hair growth [post on its way!].

In the meantime, whilst I make the final edits to my ‘2018 speedy hair growth’ post, I thought I’d share my recent hair inspiration and stalking antics. I’ve been following this group of ladies for some time now and it’s fair to say they are bosses when it comes to hair growth and retention! So get your pen and paper at the ready, what are these ladies doing that you could take into the new year?

5 HAIR GROWTH & RETENTION SECRETS OF WOMEN WITH WAIST LENGTH HAIR

I love finding long haired ladies who are open about sharing their tips and tricks for hair growth and retention, Ms Robin is one of them. Two weeks ago she told her insta followers what she felt had contributed to her hair length and retention. Did I mention she went from shoulder length to waist length in just three years and is an avid exerciser?!

 “ I started a healthy natural hair journey /waist length hair challenge in January 2010. I was shoulder length at that time. I am 5 foot 9. I achieved waist length December 2012 (so it took 3 years). My new goal is hip length. Cut back on the direct heat – you can not flat-iron and blow dry your hair frequently and expect to retain length. Your hair is gonna grow and break right off. Be gentle – you can not man handle your hair all the time and expect it to last on your head for years. Also, be careful of anything that puts strain on your hair (ex: super tight braids and weaves). One of my favourite tips is leave your hair alone. I noticed early on in my hair journey that excessive combing, brushing and manipulation of the hair in general did not contribute to retention. In fact it does the opposite “

5 HAIR GROWTH & RETENTION SECRETS OF WOMEN WITH WAIST LENGTH HAIR

“I haven’t combed my natural hair in 2 years but it’s longer than hip length“ 

As crazy as it may sound several long hair ladies [1], [2] swear by the results of finger detangling. I myself have seen my hair thrive over the past few months from only using my detangling tool once a week. I’m still on the fence about completely getting rid of it but I’m not far off, who knows perhaps I’ll give it a try in the new year. Detangling tools, as great as they are, can also wreak a lot of havoc on our strands if used too often. It’s definitely worth trying your hand at finger detangling as often as you possibly can. 

5 HAIR GROWTH & RETENTION SECRETS OF WOMEN WITH WAIST LENGTH HAIR

Besides the occasional biotin supplement in the past, I was never brave enough to fully commit myself to hair supplements but Courtney may have just changed my mind! I don’t know about you but it’s not just the length that has me drooling but how healthy her hair looks, all of which she says is thanks to her own developed brand of Manetabolism Vitamins. I had a good gander on her site to find out how the supplements differ to that of brands such as Hairfinity. Here is what she had to say:

” Manetabolism was created and formulated by a physician and nurse team. To understand vitamin deficiency and its relationship to slow hair growth, one must understand the anatomy and physiology of the body. Manetabolism is a comprehensive dietary supplement designed to provide your body with the proper vitamin nourishment to maximize hair growth, thickness and health; while simultaneously boosting your energy level and strengthening your immune system. Every ingredient was selectively chosen not only by its beneficial relationship to what it has to offer the hair, but the body as a whole. Here at The Mane Choice we dig much deeper than hair. We understand that a healthier inside WILL show from the outside! ”

5 HAIR GROWTH & RETENTION SECRETS OF WOMEN WITH WAIST LENGTH HAIR

I came to learn about this holistic beauty after stumbling across her DIY Onion Juice Hair Growth Recipe. Of course I was immediately sold as to this being one of the reasons behind all of her gorgeous hair. I’ve been meaning to whip up a scalp treat containing onions, garlic and horsetail so that my hair can indulge in the cocktail of sulphur and silica. I’ve got a few weeks to figure out a low stink recipe… Wish me luck!

5 HAIR GROWTH & RETENTION SECRETS OF WOMEN WITH WAIST LENGTH HAIR

For those of you who have been here with me on this journey for some time you’ll definitely know this amazing lady already. Jen of Just Grow Already is an absolute all rounder and her hair journey speaks for itself. It’s hard for me to pinpoint one hair secret or tip because there are so many! It’s her regimen on the whole that owes to her long and luscious locks, from her famous tea rinses to low heat regimen and commitment to protective styling, she really is the perfect one stop shop for everything you need to baby your hair to greatness. Definitely check out her blog!

So that’s it from me till my next post, I think aiming for waist length by August 2018 will be too far a stretch but I’m definitely banking on some of these tips to get myself to bra strap length at least!



CURLFORMERS HEATLESS UPDO ON FINE NATURAL HAIR

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!

CURLFORMERS HEATLESS UPDO ON FINE NATURAL HAIR

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! 

THIS HAIRSTYLE NEVER FAILS, MY SLEEK LOW SIDE PART BUN TUTORIAL

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!

A New Favourite | Top Knot Faux Bun Tutorial

Yes I know, where have I been?! Ladies the count down is real, less than 30 days before I say I do and the pressure is building! Wedding planning thus far has been a walk in the park, in fact it’s been so relaxed I would do it all over again! *Disclaimer* If of course someone else would settle the bill!!! But now with just a few weeks to go my weekdays and weekends are a mixture of Bridal showers [yes plural], final guest list screening and ordering furniture and other things for our new home.Either way I’m here and whilst the blog may have been neglected for a few weeks, my hair most certainly hasn’t. Mind you I’m always talking Haircare on one of my other social media outlets so if you’re wondering where I am they are a great place to start!

A New Favourite | Top Knot Faux Bun Tutorial

Right so enough of the excuse making and back to this post! Over the past couple of weeks London has seen almost all four seasons and the current season is [thank God] summer! Whilst I absolutely adore this time of the year, it almost always reverts my twist outs back to a fro as soon as I get on the train for work in the morning. To deal with my reversion frustrations I decided a few days back to go for a slightly different look and ended up with this sleek top knot bun.Now before you hit play on the video, let me say this is an awesome protective style for both natural and relaxed hair. The trick is to find some hair extensions which suit the texture of your hair and then the work is done. You can remove the faux hair before bed and do a quick Moisturise and Seal or LCO session before you hit the sack.