Category Archives: Transition

6 Months

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I have reached my 6 month mark.  I am absolutely proud of myself to getting to this point successfully. Just think…6 more months and I will have reached my 1 year mark!

I know that this coming Friday is supposed to be my BC date, but because of snow days in O-HI-O I have had to change some things around in my schedule. So the new date will be February 4th! I’m ready for it though!

What I have learned during my transition:

1. Patience, is indeed a virtue

2. Be kind to your hair and it will be kind to you

3. Yes, your diet does matter. What you put into your body def. shines outwardly

4. Take the time to read and understand your hair strands.

5. You don’t have to break the bank to enjoy healthy and beautiful hair.

6.  Stick with a product through its entirety in order to get a true feel of how your hair reacts to your current product versus the new product. I suggest this as a way to steer away from product junkism and as a way to really get to know your hair.

7. When you find something good. Stick to it!

8. Moisturize, Moisturize, Moisturize!!!

9. Protect, Protect, Protect

10. Comb only when wet!

While you are transitioning, you really get to know your hair and if the whole natural process is really right for you. If you continue to think that you need to put a perm in your hair because you can’t handle the “naps” then you need to go ahead back to the crack cream because you are not ready for the change. You end up doing more harm to your hair than good when you constantly use heat and products to “stretch” your curls or gels to lay your hair flat. There’s no point in all of that.

During my transition I have noticed less breakage and less dandruff.  Gone are the days when I had to sweep my bathroom floor every other day because of all the hair that had fallen out after a combing session.  My hair itches less and there is less dandruff most likely because there is far less irritation to my scalp. I owe it all to the use of better products and really treating my hair with care.

Misconceptions that I have gotten over. My hair is not as strong as it looks.  When I handle my hair, I handle it as if it is fine china.  Very durable, yet fragile at the same time. You have to keep it clean, protected and moisturized.

My favorite lesson is that MY HAIR IS NATURALLY CURLY (or wavy) and it is GOOD HAIR!

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Attention Transitioners: How to Make Your Braid-Out/Twist-Out Last

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OK, now many of you probably already know the secret…but I have only discovered it this week! SMH! So, for those of you that might be a little bit slow on catching on to certain hair maintaining tips (such as myself) here is a little trick on how to make your twist-outs and braid-outs last!

So…first here is a picture of my hair on day one of the twist-out

Now here is a picture from day four of the twist-out

I still look hella fly, if I might say so myself 🙂  So what did I do?

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Day One:

Hot oil treatment

Co-washed hair

Detangled with leave-in conditioner

Divided hair into 4 sections (this works wonders I advise anyone who is detangling and/or styling their hair to divide your hair into sections and work one section at a time. It is less painful and it makes the job a lot less stressful)

Twisted hair with coconut oil and kinky-curly knot today (or styling gel of your choice) starting with the back section.

Then roll the ends with the perm rods.

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Day two

Take a spray bottle filled with water and vegetable glycerin and work re-twist hair (the hair is still pretty conditioned from the previous day so there was no need to put extra conditioner in the hair. When I re-wet my hair, I could feel the conditioner coming back to life.)

After twist, then I put the perm-rods at the end

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Day 3

I used the spray bottle with the water and vegetable glycerin mix and twisted each section. Today, as I twisted I rolled it up right away because I found that the ends were a little scraggly after taking the twist out this morning and I think it was because they were not as tight because I didn’t totally re-wet my hair, only spritzed it. No conditioners were used.

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Day 4

Took my twist out with a little jojoba oil on my fingers to give it a little more shine. Perfect! The entire day!!! Looks good as the first day!

So, What was I doing before? LOL! I would just wrap my hair up in a silk scarf or bonnet and the next morning my twist-out would be so flat and dry and life-less. In order for my hair to get the life and “freshness” back I would have to co-wash and re-twist or braid my hair again. So I was literally doing my hair (washing it) every other day. In the winter it was too cold to do all of that, so I would just braid my hair back and wear a wig which kept my hair filled with moisture and my ends protected.  It worked for me too, but not like this! I don’t know why I haven’t been doing this all along, but I wish I had been! I guess I was thinking that the twist or braid-outs wouldn’t turn out as nice if I were to do it over while it was dry.  I was thinking that it would come out looking weird because the hair would have different patterns. But, that’s obviously not true and me knowing this before would’ve saved me a whole lot of time. At the same time, trail and error only gives me the opportunity to learn more about my hair! Likes and dislikes.

Hope this helps you out 🙂

P.S. Day 3 is the best way to go!

Cutting off the Ends

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Hair Growth 5 months

Last week I started working out with my friend! I am so super proud of myself. Granted the first day I started my workout plan we were hungry but too tired to make dinner so we ordered a pizza from Papa John’s…don’t judge me! LOL I will get to working on my meal plan next week…baby steps my dear, baby steps!

Anywho, I started working out in the evenings and the sweat is def. good for the hair. I told you guys about the new wig that I am wearing while at work so I am not co-washing my hair as often as I was during the warmer months (every other day almost compared to every week now).  So yesterday when I washed my hair I started playing with my new growth and trying to measure it with a ruler. Then I got to a point where I was just like whatever I’m going to cut it this way I can really measure my growth!  So I did and to my surprise I had quite a bit of natural hair after the permed hair was gone.  I could even do a two-strand twist with the hair. I love the texture too! It is so cool. I already know when I cut it all off I’m probably going to acquire the “hands in the hair” problem because I can’t stop touching it!

I measured it at 3 1/4 inches.  Black hair, like other types of hair, grows an average of a 1/2 inch per month. Some people think our hair grows slower because the coily nature of black hair makes it harder to see that it’s growing. The hair shrinks up and doesn’t show its real length unless it’s stretched out. 

I have been on my adventure since the end of July and I am going on 5 months next week [insert pat on the back here].  So, my hair has grown the approximate 1/2 inch per month…perhaps a little bit more! I can’t emphasise enough how much this adventure has changed my LIFE-STYLE!

I’m Wiggin it! You Diggin it?

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Yep, yep yall! I got a wig! I love it and it’s so easy to manage and maintain. I found that I was having to do more to my hair in the winter months, but it is sooo cold here in O-HI-O and I figure my wig can act dully as a “hat” to keep my head warm LOL and to keep me stylish! If you are anything like me, in the winter it takes me forever to get up-I wait to the last minute, so this is an easy solution!

Underneath my wig I am keeping my hair very moisturized. I use a silk cap on my head instead of the normal stocking cap to keep it from rubbing up against my hair. My hair is braided underneath. I usually braid following my wash and I put a little oil (either castor oil or coconut oil) in order to retain moisture. Since I have a curly wig, I braid the front of my hair a little bit smaller and then take it out so that it will have the same wavy texture as the wig.  This way I don’t have to use heat to curl my hair or straighten it so that it blends in with the wig.

This is a full wig. I put the wig on my head and take a rat-tail comb and pull pieces of the front out  and blend it in with the front of the wig. I hate it when you can tell by looking at the front of someone’s head that they are wearing a wig.

I think I will wear it all winter long and on the weekends I plan on trying the head wrap thing! I love scarfs!!! This way I can give my hair a break from all of the manipulation it takes in order to keep a transition style up.  This can be a protective style. Most protective styles like micro braids and sew-in weaves do a lot more damage to my hair than good (hence the reason I decided to go natural in the first place)

Please let me know your thoughts and if you have any other suggestions for winter styles…let a sista know! 🙂

N.Joy 🙂

Some Pictures of Muah!!

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So, it’s truely been a long time! Thank you for still coming by to check on me! Just know that although I have been on a mini-hiatus from my blog, I have been taking really good care of my locks! I share my experience with anyone who will listen AND I have even convinced one of my girl-friends to go natural too!

Let me tell you, this is the best decision I have made as far as my hair is concerned.  So here’s to the adventure and I hope you all are still having tons of fun on yours!

N.Joy 🙂

MBC (Mini Big Chop)

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No ya’ll I didn’t chicken out! I just decided- along with my fabulous hair stylist- to transition a little bit longer. Three more months to be exact. So now I have a B.C. date of January 28, 2011! Way to bring in the NEW YEAR!!

So, what I did end up doing (for those of who might be slightly concerned) is a mini big chop (MBC) I cut off half of my hair. About 3 inches to be exact. I only have about 6 inches left and 3 of those inches are natural. I am happy with my decision. I was completely prepared to cut it all off if she suggested that that was the best option, but honestly she complimented me on how I had been taking care of my hair because it is “very healthy”!  For that compliment, I have my natural hair community to thank.  It is because of your posts, videos and comments that I have been able to keep this going.

I can’t wait to have a full head of naturally kinky-curly hair! I’m gonna rock it like it’s the best thing since sliced bread! HA!

Well my natural diva’s I’ll keep you posted and I will post some pictures of my new do soon (although I basically look the same length so there will be no comparison there 😦 )

Holla atcha,

N.Joy

3 Months…ALREADY!!!

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I can’t believe I made it 3 months! But of course I said that at my 1 month mark and 2 month mark as well! I know it has been a while, but I have had hella drama on this side of the tracks, but its all good now! However, it is amazing how when you get caught up in life you want to find a way to detangle yourself from whatever it is that has you locked up and for me, the best way to do that is by changing the one thing I can always have control over (for the most part)…MY HAIR OF COURSE!

Now, I think I will do the BC! I know I have been going back and forth on whether or not I should go ahead and let it all go, but I’m thinking that it wouldn’t be a bad idea…besides, what better time is it than now to see how fabulous I will look in a TWA!

I feel like there are reasons that I want to hold on to my hair for just a little bit longer and they are as follows:

  1. Afraid I won’t look right
  2. Not a lot of styling options
  3. It’s getting pretty cold outside (and it will be getting colder I’m in the mid-west)
  4. What will other people say (well that one isn’t such a big deal to me)
  5. I will miss having hair on my head
  6. What will happen as it starts to grow out
  7. I have scab hair, so it might look pretty bad when I cut it in the beginning

On the other hand:

  1. It’s time for a change
  2. I can always wear a cute scarf on my head
  3. Not too much maintainance in the beginning
  4. I’m running out of ways to style my hair
  5. The two textures are beginning to be a bit much to handle
  6. I think I will have fun with the “new me”
  7. I need to let go of some negativity in my life and I think it can begin by letting go of the bad ends! 🙂

Well, I have an appointment on Friday (which I almost cancelled, but it’s still on) and I will have pictures to post very soon too! I still don’t know what will happen when I go, so I won’t promise anything; however I do know that I’m leaning towards the BC 70% right about now!

Stay tuned because there’s more to see….

Book Review: Thank God I’m Natural

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Book Review: Thank God I'm Natural

Reading will always get you through any adventure. I have been reading tons of your blog posts everyday and they are all encouraging! I love the stories, the advice, the realness!

I read a book a couple of weeks ago called Thank God I’m Natural by Chris-Tia E. Donaldson. This is a great, easy-to-read book for anyone trying to figure out what it truly means to be natural.  There are so many stereotypes when it comes to women wanting to rock their natural tresses.  She goes through and explains the process for every natural and transition hair styles from a simple twist-out to sister locks. I like this book especially because she tells her own story of becoming natural and the obstacles she would encounter and decisions she would have to make especially when it came time to rock her natural look in the corporate universe.

It’s complete with the natural hair dictionary and everything.  Like I said, this book is a great beginners guide. It’s simple;  no crazy jargon to get you confused. It’s straight to the point and it leaves you wanting to get to know your hair.  Even if you have been natural for a while, it’s a good book to read.

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Book Review: Curly Like Me

Next on the list is Curly Like Me: How to Grow Your Hair Healthy, Long and Strong by Teri LaFlesh

Check out her story here.  Her hair type is not at all close to mine, I believe she is in the 3’s and I’m def. a 4b or c, but I think our goal remains the same no matter what and that is to grow and maintain naturally long, healthy tresses! I would love to for you to recommend any good books or blogs for me to check out!

I’m still truckin along…

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I’m still in it for the long haul. Just incase any of you were wondering. I get so many complements on my hair styles, it is ridiculous! I didn’t really realize how many people love natural hair. It is so beautiful and unique. No two hair styles are alike and you stand out no matter what.

I made my hair appointment for October 22, 2010 that will mark the beginning of my 4th month of transitioning. I am still unsure of what will happen on that day. Originally I planned to transition a complete year before making the big chop, however now that I am starting to see and feel my curls, I can’t wait to see what it will look like. I’ve never had a TWA before and the only thing bad about getting one now would be the fact that it is getting cold outside. 

My stylist is one that I trust completely (so that is awesome) and I know that she will advise me on the best option for my hair.

Here is what I am suggesting:

  1. Cut off the same amount of permed hair as the hair that has grown (new growth). In other words if I have 3 inches of new growth, I need to cut off 3 inches of permed hair.
  2. Only cut the dead ends (I don’t have any split ends surprisingly) and just let it all continue to grow unless I start to see major breakage-which I haven’t seen yet.
  3. Go ahead and do the BC!!

I know many of you might be shouting “BC! BC! BC!!!” I don’t know, we will see. I haven’t ruled any one thing out at this point and today I’m up for anything. Tomorrow might not be the same! I don’t want to have any regrets in this process. I want to go at my own pace, as all transitioners should. I’m having so much fun learning about my hair and testing new products and trying new things.

Well, anyways! I’m happy to have begun my third month of transitioning. I am not turning back! I am too happy to be nappturally njoyable! :O)

Inspire!

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Inspire