Wednesday, 30 April 2014

How to Elongate Curly Hair Without Damaging!


I have never found that magical product that will elongate my curls turning them into red carpet waves as (aside from heat tools) this just doesn't exist. There are some things that make a difference though. I would like to point out that shrinkage is not a bad thing, some people love it others not so much. Shrinkage is actually a sign of healthy hair and is an indicator of elasticity, making hair stronger and less prone to breakage. 

If you are reading this wanting to drastically loosen your curls, like everyday, you may be fighting a losing battle. Its one I and many others have fought for a long time and my personal experience of it was exhausting! If you have the stamina, great! I envy the many ways you will be able to mix it up. But for someone like me (my score on a laziness quiz recently was 92/100 *applause*) bowing out of the race was for the best.

But! I do have some less time consuming, gentler approaches that can be done everyday/more often if you are still craving a bit more length!


Take it into Your Own Hands!

The thing I think does the most is not being afraid to get in there and shape your curls yourself. Sometimes they just need a little extra help. I'm talking twisting and twirling the hair. Now I tend to twist the hair rather than twirl it around my finger as I think it is better for elongating but this does cause the hair to go more into ringlets,which is fine for me as my hair is naturally ringlets. If this isn't for you then wrapping the hair around your fingers and pulling slightly will define and should elongate the curl.


 Keep it Hydrated! 

Frizz = Big Hair = Shrinkage. Okay, so I am not great at Maths but I can figure this one out. Making
sure you hair is hydrated and conditioned will prevent frizz. Whilst frizz is not the same as shrinkage if your hair is unhealthy and damaged it will puff up and can make hair look shorter. Leave in conditioners are a great way to keep in extra moisture.


Pineappling

Pineappling at night will help your curls stay intact and stop them from getting squished up in your sleep. I do this every night to sleep as it will also protect hair from frizz, breakage and help keep moisture in. The prevention from breakage will also help your hair retain length and therefore elongate curls.


Sets or Rollers.

I don't tend to use either very often as I find them fairly time consuming but they are very effective at preventing shrinkage. The latest trend seems to be Curlformers and I have heard very good things about them. I have never tried them, but I am definitely considering buying some. If you have some, please leave a comment and let me know what you think!



There are a lot of products out there that claim to reduce shrinkage but I have never found any of these specific products particularly helpful, although again leave me a comment if you have!There are also many different methods that work great for other people they just don't suit my hair type very well. If these ones aren't the ticket then some others you could research are banding and henna. I have tried banding and didn't get on with it but have yet to try henna!


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Sunday, 27 April 2014

Rosewater ACV Make-up Remover and Toner.


Okay, so I know this is not a post about curly hair, but it does use products I bought for hair recipes! I have created a DIY make-up remover and facial toner. I really like this stuff as, making my own beauty products is the dream, it is 100% natural, so very cheap, chemical free and it works really well. 

Rosewater is known for being a great cleanser, is anti-inflammatory, an impurifier and is good for sensitive skin, whilst ACV is known for its ability to balance the skins PH level. Both also are known to work well as make-up removers. My skin is fairly oily and has quite a lot of scarring and I have found that using this has really helped with the oil and breakouts. I am not sure if it has helped the scarring, I would probably say yes but it may just be because they are getting a chance to heal now!




1Tbsp Rosewater.
1Tsp Apple Cider Vinegar.
2 Tsp of Water 


Mix all of the ingredients together and use with cotton wool pads/balls to clean the skin. I use this both in the morning as a toner and also as a facial make-up remover. It makes the skin feel nice and clean without the burning of alcohol laden toners and removers I have used in the past. There is a little tingle from the ACV but it is more invigorating than burning. 

Obviously this is not suitable for eye make-up removal, but I do have a natural alternative. I use coconut oil to remove my eye-makeup, its economical, natural, very effective and good for the skin. Remember the skin around your eyes is thinner than on the rest of your face so requires more moisture and care, making coconut oil a really beneficial choice.

This recipe is just a guide as it works for my skin. You may need to adjust the amounts slightly for your skin type to see the best results. If you have dry skin I would not recommend this recipe as ACV can be quite drying. I would also recommend using moisturiser after using this recipe.

Do you have any DIY beauty recipes?

Let me know! 



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Give Your Hair a Break!


Recently I have learned that paying too much attention to your hair can actually sometimes be a bad thing. I have been doing a lot of hair masks and things that should be good for my hair recently and my hair has been feeling great. Then suddenly it went a bit frizzy and limp. 

Overworked and Built-up Hair Needing a Break.
I realised that I had been overdoing it a bit and that my hair was probably a bit overworked and suffering from some build up. I had not been doing anything bad to my hair I had just been doing too much.
 The easiest way to fix this is just to stop I have found. Which as a hair product addict can be hard but it is needed from time to time. It can be a good idea to start with a clarifying low-poo or an ACV rinse, which is what I did. Then I just left all product out of it for about a week. At the end of this process I then did a coconut oil, honey and conditioner mask and things seemed to be back to normal. If your hair suddenly starts misbehaving with no notable change in products or routine then it could be a number of factors ranging from weather to lack of protein but I think the most common is probably build up/ over treating. I would definitely recommend giving your hair a rest for about a week and seeing if things improve instead of other options as often if our hair is frizzy and limp we will reach for the product and treatments thus worsening to problem!
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Saturday, 26 April 2014

U-Shaped Hair Pins.


So I don't really know what to call these little guys exactly Hair pins? Hair Pegs? but I bought them on amazon and they are really great! They also cost 67p incl. postage which to me is just unreal. I have never actually seen ones like this before in a shop, but I am sure they must exist somewhere else. 




So I don't really know what to call these things exactly but I bought these hair pins from Amazon and they are really great! They also cost 67p incl. postage which to me is just unreal. They do a really great job of holding my hair in an up-do securely, whilst still being easily hidden. They came in a three pack and sometimes I can get away with using only 1, sometimes I need all 3, dependant on style and how my hairs behaviour. 
They are also much better for your hair than your average elastic hair tie as they are less likely to tangle the hair causing breakage. They are also much better than your average hair clip, which is often made up of a few different components that hair can get easily tangled in. 
Quite often I like to change from an up-do to wearing my hair loose throughout the day but when I use an elastic hair tie or even sometimes a hair clip, I find that is mishaps my curls and that once its up, it has to stay that way. These are much better for this and super quick to whip in and out. It seems like a really simple thing but they are super easy to use, super useful and super versatile. Super :)
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Tuesday, 15 April 2014

3 Ways to Preserve Curls Overnight.


Zzzz.....

Keeping curls in place overnight can be a real pain. Washing everyday is bad, but often we find ourselves needing to because sleep takes such a toll on our curls. I used to always find myself waking up looking like I had been dragged through a bush. So what can we do to protect our hair during sleep?


Satin Cap or Satin/Silk Pillowcase

The thing I value most to keep my hair intact during sleep is my Satin Cap. It really is a glorious thing. My hair stays in tact and is still smooth and silky the next day. Satin is much less rough, than your average cotton pillowcase which can rub against the hair during sleep and cause frizz and damage and breakage. Cotton also draws moisture from the hair and skin, dehydrating it. I used to use a Satin Cap but have recently upgraded to a Silk Pillowcase which is better because it also protects the skin.

Pineappling

When I first started embracing my natural curls I heard a lot about 'Pineappling' but dismissed it for some reason. I don't really know why, but I think it seemed to me a bit like a trend which is then shortly forgotton. But once since I gave it a real go, I haven't looked back. It has really helped protect my curls overnight. I use a satin ribbon to secure the hair as I think it is gentler than a hair band and allows for me to really be in control of how tight I tie it.

Keeping it Hydrated

Yes. I know, you already knew this. But keeping on top of making sure your hair is hydrated and healthy is just so important. Properly hydrated, healthy hair will be more resilient and less prone to frizz overnight. I often do hair masks overnight as it not only allows the mask to work more effectively on your hair (not the sleep, the time aspect) but whilst the mask in on your hair it will be a bit more protected. I also often use a small amount coconut oil overnight as a way to get a bit more moisture in.


Since I have started doing these simple things I find that I actually prefer my hair the day after. I now wash my hair in the evening with time to let it dry and save myself so much valuable morning time rather than wash in the morning and have wet hair all day. All these things also allows me to have 2nd and 3rd day hair, which is not only more convenient but much better for my hair than washing more frequently. 
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Monday, 14 April 2014

My Curl Routine.


This is my curly hair routine. I have found that this routine has really helped define my curls and keep frizz away. It has also meant that I need less product as my curls are able to define themselves more easily.



  • The first thing I do is co-wash (wash with conditioner only) my hair with Tresemme Naturals Conditioner. I rinse with warm water and then finish off with a cold water rinse, (cold water helps to prevent frizz as it closes the cuticle) with the water as cold as I can stand.

  •  When I get out of the shower I usually squeeze some water out of my hair and then I just clip it back whilst I get dressed. After about 5 mins, I squeeze my hair again to get a bit more water out then I am ready to style. I want my hair to still be wet, just not continuously dripping.

  • I start by raking through product with my fingers and distributing evenly. I use my 100% Natural Flaxseed Honey Hair Gel. I then section off the bits that will hang around my face and brush it through. I then divide into about 7/8 pieces and twist them in the direction I would like them pulling to whichever side of my parting I want them. 

  •  Once I have twisted the front, I then gently twist the rest of my hair into about 6/7 very large loose twists, just to help with some clumping and to help weigh them down a little. I then leave my hair to air dry over the course of an evening. 

  • Throughout the evening probably a couple of times an hour, I try to flip my head upside down for a minute or so and gently shake a bit, this is to stop my hair from losing all of its volume at the root. I am not very strict about this and I really just try to do it as much as I remember. Apart from this I leave my hair alone.

  • When my hair is about 1/2 to 3/4 dry I usually begin to pull apart some of the curls a little. I do this now because at this point I have a pretty good indicator of how the curls are going to sit and my hair is still just damp enough that I can manipulate them a bit more if I am not happy. If my hair has dried a little too much, I will just spray it with some water and re-twist. 

  • When my hair is dry I will then start to pull most of the curls apart and shake my hair out a little. I usually end up doing a little adjusting, like clipping bits down that have curled oddly etc...

  • I will then pineapple my hair (flip your head upside down and tie loosely at the top of the head) usually with a satin ribbon, as I find it much gentler than a hair band and then put in a satin cap ready for bed.

  • When I wake up the next morning I undo my hair, shake it out maybe adjust a few curls and I am ready to start the day.
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Friday, 11 April 2014

Flaxseed & Honey Hair Gel - Update and Results.


So I have been using the Flaxseed Honey Hair Gel I made a few days ago and I love what it does to my hair!

And these are second day curls.

It has kept the curls soft but still defined them really, really well! I have the tiniest amount of crunch, but that is really probably down to me using a little bit much and by the second day it was gone anyway. Another thing I love is that after using it my hair feels soft and healthy, in a way that I have never felt after a shop bought product, even if it claims to be conditioning. It also makes for great second day curls. I am very impressed with how long it will hold the curls without making them stiff at all.

Close up of Curls.
I will definitely be making again! I am also really looking forward to experimenting with the recipe a bit, perhaps trying it with a different oil and essential oils.


P.s Apologies for my terrible photography. 



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Wednesday, 9 April 2014

DIY Flaxseed & Honey Hair Gel!


DIY Flaxseed & Honey Hair Gel.

I have been wanting to make my own flaxseed (or linseed here in the UK) gel for a while as making my own styling products is the dream. But I just couldn't find any Flaxseeds. I felt like I had looked everywhere.... Then I looked in my kitchen. And I had some Flaxseeds. I have had them for about a year, they had just been hiding under the name of Linseeds. As all of the sites I had been reading were American, I didn't realise they were the same. *Insert face directly into palm*

So (eventually) I made some. And here is how!

What you'll need:

A Bowl
A Small Pan
Sieve/Strainer
1/2 Tsp Honey
2 Cups of Water
1 Tsp Castor Oil
1Tbsp Rosewater
1/2 Cup of Flaxseeds/Linseeds

  • *OPTIONAL* - Soak Flaxseeds/Linseeds over night or a few hours in the water. This will increase the yield. 
  • Place Flaxseed in the pan with the water and boil for around 5-7 minutes. This may vary slightly and is not really an exact science!
  • When the seeds are no longer sinking to the bottom of the pan and are held in suspension by the liquid is a good guide. It should be a consistency similar to thick gel. Sieve/strain the liquid and seeds into a bowl. It may take a few minutes as it is quite thick. At this point it should look something like this...

The consistency should be a thick gel that takes a few seconds to drop.

  • At this point clean your pan. It becomes very hard to wash if you leave it, clean any extra spoons etc. while you are at it.
  • When it has all strained, discard the seeds. Now add the honey, rosewater and castor oil and whisk until it has all blended. 
  • Store in a sealed container or a glass jar. It should last around 1-2 weeks refrigerated.  It may last longer but do keep checking on it. It can also be frozen and stored for longer.
So simple and easy :)

See here for follow up results with pictures!


Would you try making this at home?

Let me know!


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How to Get Some Shape and Definition to Curls.


 For some reason until a few weeks ago I always underestimated trying to manipulate and shape my curls just using my hands. I don't know why it has taken me so long to realised that changing the direction that my curls go can make a big difference.

 My curls at the front of my head sort of curl backwards away from my face, making them stand up and out, making my hair have little shape at the front. I always thought that I needed product or heat to try and get my curls to hang down but when I looked closer I realised it was because the direction the curl was going from the root was towards the back of my head, kind of like a quiff. So no wonder my hair was sticking up. But it is really easy to change. It's kind of like a mini twist out. 

 I just apply my normal product to wet hair as I would usually. I then brush the sections of hair and twist my hair in sections (however big I want the curl to be) in the direction I wan't it to go. In this case I twist inwards, towards my nose. And Voila! My curls actually hang, rather than float, around my face. 

This may seem like a very small thing (it probably also seems very obvious) but it has actually made a lot of difference to the shape of my hair and overall look.

For me the lesson here is not looking closely enough at my hair. I shouldn't, but I often just look at it as a big problematic mess (this is changing, I swear!) and don't realise that a lot of my hair is great and that rather than one big problematic mess, I actually just have a few difficult areas. Pinpointing these spots is pretty easy to do it just takes some close level observation, even just inspecting how spread out the hairs on your head (density) are can really help.
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Ouidad Climate Control Heat and Humidity Gel - Review


Price: Around £20
Availability: In the UK, online only.
Worth it? Yes, I think so.

The Ouidad Climate Control Heat and Humidity Gel is something I had been wanting to try for a while. I have heard such good things about it and many places rank it as one of the best styling products, so I knew eventually I would have to give it a try. But I really couldn't face paying so much for a product I didn't know for certain worked for my hair. Again with my savvy ebay skills, I found someone in the UK who was selling a travel size bottle for only about £5 inc. delivery! 

Ouidad Climate Control Heat and Humidity Gel.

I really, really liked it. Which annoys me somewhat as it is so expensive! But saying this, it is again one of these expensive products that really is economical. So little is needed to achieve great results. The Climate Control is a gel and usually I don't seem to get on too well with gels but this one was really light. My hair was not crunchy at all and didn't feel weighed down, which is something I find gel highly irritating for. It gave me really, really good definition at the same time. I usually find there is a bit of a toss up between definition and no-crunch, soft curls, but I felt that there was no trade off whatsoever. Something I also find gel annoying for is that it can make my hair feel in bad condition after use, which this also did not. As for the 'Climate Control' part of the product, I think it did it's job. I can't say I didn't notice any change in my hair throughout the day but the product did seem to last and hold my hair pretty well, especially for the weather. Overall I would give this product an 8/10  points taken off for the expense and lack of availability in the UK.

P.s I am sorry I can not show you a picture of my hair ( I personally hate it when people don't show one) but I actually tried this product a few months ago, when starting a blog was just a glimmer in my eye!
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Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Oils for Curly Hair - A Beginners Guide.


There are so many oils you can use for your hair and it seems as though everyone has their favourite. Everyone has an opinion on which to use and when I was first trying to decide which oils to use I was a bit daunted!

So here is a list of some of the most commonly used oils for hair, their pros and cons, their properties etc.

Coconut Oil 
Penetrates the follicle, Hair loss, Hair Damage, Holds Moisture, Conditions, Anti-Dandruff, Anti Frizz, Split ends, Reduces Protein Loss, Softens, Anti-Bacterial, Anti-Fungal.
 I said everyone has an opinion, this is mine. I love coconut oil. Apart from the fact that it smells so good, it is cheap and readily available. Which I like in my hair products.

Argan Oil
 Hydrating, Increases Elasticity and Strength, Reduces Breakage, Helps Repair Damage, Shine, PH balancing. I did a review of Argan oil here but was a bit unimpressed. It was a good oil, just not worth the expensive price tag.

Olive Oil 
Moisturising, Ant-Dandruff, Anti-Frizz, Adds Shine, Softens Hair  Probably the most readily available, if its not already in your kitchen, it probably should be.

Grapeseed Oil
Hair Growth, Anti-Dandruff, Moisturises Scalp and Hair, Adds Shine, Conditions, Strengthens, Hypoallergenic.

Macadamia Oil
 Similar to the Scalps Natural Oil- Sebum, Softness, Shine, Split Ends, UV, chemical and Heat Protection.

Castor Oil 
Hair loss, Hair Growth, Split ends, Breakage, Conditions, Moisturises, Dry Scalp, Shine, Boosts Scalp Circulation, Anti-Fungal, Anti-Bacterial, Humectant - attracts water molecules from the air, thus hydrating. I have tried this for the first time recently and I like it so far.

Almond Oil
 Protective, Sealant, Split Ends, Shine, Conditions, Softens, Anti-Dandruff. One of the first oils I tried for my hair. A good solid oil.

Avocado Oil 
Moisturiser, Mositure Retention, Anti-Frizz, Fairly Light, Hair Loss, Anti-Dandruff, High in Fatty Acids.

Jojoba Oil
 Similar to Scalps Natural Oil, Anti-Dandruff, Dry Scalp, Penetrates the Follicle, Stengthening, Hydrating, Adds Volume, Emollient - Helps Repair Damaged Hair.



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Monday, 7 April 2014

Rosewater Glycerin Moisture Spritz.


I have been thinking about trying Glycerine out for a while. It is something that is a bit marmitesque in the curly hair community, some love, some hate. But it seems to be one of those things you have to try for yourself.  As summer is on its way, I want something that will keep my hair moist, so thought I would give glycerine a go. 

Benefits
Glycerine is an alcohol that is obtained from plant or vegetable fats. It has a sweet taste, a sticky, syrup like consistency and is odorless. It is also a humectant - which means that it draws water from the air and holds it in the hair. This is great if your hair is dry as it will help it retain moisture and is a common ingredient in many leave in conditioners and has been used for years in hair and beauty products. It is known for its ability to fight frizz and help define curls. Some studies have also shown that it can help repair and regenerate skin cells. 

Concerns
There are two main concerns with Glycerine. Glycerine conducts thermal energy meaning that it could potentially aid heat in damaging hair, so use sparingly in conjunction with heat. It also is known to strip hair colour. This mostly applied to freshly coloured hair, as colour takes a few days to settle. Neither of these concerns apply to me but if they do to you, just be a bit more cautious.


Distilled Water, Castor Oil, Glycerine, RoseWater, ACV.

Glycerine is also quite sticky, so when the wrong ratios are used it can make hair sticky too, so watch out!


A Spray Bottle.
1 Tbsp Castor Oil.
4 Tbsp of Glycerine.
4 Tbsp of Rosewater.
2 Cups of Distilled Water.
3/4 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar.
A Few Drops of an Essential Oil.


Simple mix all of the ingredients together and put into the spray bottle. Use on hair after styling or throughout the day as a hair pick me up. If you feel hair is a bit sticky or its just a bit much, reducing the amount of Glycerine/ adding more water should do the trick.

I have been using this for a few days and my hair seems to be feeling a bit more hydrated. I was worried that my hair might become sticky, especially as this is my own recipe, but so far so good. The ratios seem good. I will do an update once a bit more time has passed to see how it works out in the long run! :)



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Friday, 4 April 2014

My Curly Hair Guide.


This is simply a guide for someone who is maybe just starting to embrace their hair and is looking for a fingerpost in the right direction. Ultimately everyones hair works differently, these are just some bits of advice that have helped get me through the last year!

My hair after lots of damage and then around a year of following these rules!


Handling



Look Closely 
It might just look like one big mass, but it is made up of so many tiny individual bits. Every curl is made up of lots of separate strands of hair that fit together. The more we touch them the more they will pull apart causing frizz. But we have to touch it?! How else do we get product in? The way we touch our hair will have different effects. Raking through the hair with a fine tooth comb will disperse the curl a lot, whereas using the fingers or a wide tooth comb will break them up a bit to detangle but the curls will still be defined.


Twirling/ Twisting
 The best way I find to help with curl formation is twirling or twisting. Using your fingers to encourage the curls to fit together can work wonders. I don't know why I overlooked this for so long. If a curl isn't sitting how you want it to, take it into your own hands! Literally. When it is wet apply products and then just curl it around your finger or twist it.


Touching
When we touch our hair can have a great effect too. The wetter the hair the more able it is to reform the curls so touching the hair when it is holding onto more water, i.e asap after the shower is the best time apply product. It is also the best time to apply product as the water will help the product disperse easier and smoother throughout the hair, which helps avoid that crunchy look.



Care 


Your hair will look at its best when it is in its best condition. When hair is damaged and in bad condition it will be frizzy, dry and be unable to hold onto its shape. When it is healthy it will be shinier, smoother and behave its self much better. Be nice to it and it will return the favour.

Treatments
 I do conditioning masks a few times a month on my hair. I usually make my own, with ingredients like coconut oil. They make the hair softer, shinier and after I have done treatments like this I find myself needing less product for a while. I would recumbent treating your hair maybe once/twice a month to give it a boost.


Heat/Chemicals
 We can't ignore that they are bad for the hair. They are, but sometimes we still wanna use them and thats cool too. I have to admit I am much happier after ditching them (for the most part, I still straighten occasionally) but I don't want to limit myself so making sure that my hair is in great condition and finding good heat protection is key. For so many years when straightening I didn't bother to take care of my hair or use protection and I am paying for it now.


Knowledge is Power 
Learn something new! Learning about you hair, the things it is made of, the things it needs, is vital. I didn't realise how much my hair was missing until I sat down and made myself do some research. It takes less then you think and learning to basics can be done in less than half an hour. There are some really basic things that knowing  can help make a big difference.  Click here for a link to my Curly Hair Terminology, that includes some of these basic things.


Health 
What we eat has a big impact on our hair. If we are eating badly, skipping meals or starving ourselves then our hair will suffer and won't grow properly. Some of the key vitamins and minerals we need for our hair are B vitamins like B6 and B12, Iron, Vitamin C, Beta Carotene and Zinc. Also, DRINK ALL THE WATER.




Products


Products are not as important as I used to think. I used to think my hair was bad because the product was. But products can only do so much, they can't change your hair, they need something to work with and if that is a badly treated mess, then its not their fault they aren't doing what you want. BUT the combo of healthy hair and the right product can be amazing! Things to take into consideration...


Whose is it for?
 Products are often designed for certain hair types, try to pick ones for curly hair or better yet buy them from a company that specialises in curly hair. As we can see from most advertising, a lot of the big brands like loreal, don't seem to know what curly hair is, they seem to think that means slightly wavy, which leads me to question.


Research
 Look at product reviews and what other people have said about it. If someone has a similar hair type to you and says that it was horrible then maybe try another product. At the same time though, what works for one person may not another for all sorts of reasons, don't completely limit yourself but maybe use it as a guide. Also find out what you hair types are and this will really help you find products that are great for your hair. About half an hours worth of research can save so much time and money in the long run.


Look at the back
Check the ingredients in the product. If you have time, find out what all of them actually are. You will be amazed at all the crap that goes into them. I try to stick to products with as few ingredients as possible or ones that have as many natural ingredients as possible. So many products will claim to be a 'moisturising' product and then have chemicals in them (perhaps for colour or smell) that are drying.


Start Small
I always think that starting with as few products or as little of a product as you can is better. Build it up if you need more. I used to always ignore the advice on the product for application, thinking it would never be enough, put way more on and then wonder why my hair is crunchy. Its human nature to think we know better but if you are using a good product, from a company that knows what it is doing, they are saying it for a reason.


Simplicity/DIY
If you are paying £7 for a hair mask with about 30 ingredients that boasts its great coconut oil content, why not just buy some coconut oil? Or worse, about £25 for a bottle of shampoo containing 'Moroccan Oil' or Argan Oil its real name, what are you doing? You are basically paying for this ingredient at an ridiculous rate. The product might only contain about 3 drops of the stuff and you could buy an entire bottle of the oil, for the price of one bottle of shampoo. Companies boast that this product has been used for centuries by people from 'distant' places, but they weren't using it in a highly overpriced shampoo. I am not saying don't buy expensive products, I am a big believer in if something works, don't question it. I'm not saying make everything completely yourself just be savvy. Most of my favourite hair things consist of about 2/3 ingredients and I have made myself.





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The Body Shop Rainforest Moisture Shampoo - Review on Curly Hair.



Price: £4.50
Size: 250ml
Dry Hair

So I have been needing to buy a low-poo for a while but I really didn't want to spend a lot of money. I get on great with just co-washing but I wanted something that would help get some of the leftover oil out of my hair from conditioning masks that I use about once or twice a month. So I has heard a few people talking about one The Body Shop did and thought I would give it a go. I chose the Rainforest Moisture one for dry hair and the bottle says that it contains Pracaxi Oil, Manketti Oil and Community Fair Trade Honey.

The Body Shop Rainforest Moisture Shampoo - For Dry Hair.

The smell of the product is really nice, albeit a little unusual, but nice. The consistency is fairly standard for any kind of shampoo but feels quite nice in the hand. It also lathered really well. I was using it to wash out oil from a deep condition and didn't want to get to much out so I only used about a 50p sized amount but that was actually more than I needed! So it seems as though it will be quite economical. It washed out easily and did a good job getting oil from my hair and my hair felt cleaned but not too dry afterwards. Well, it felt a little bit dry considering I had just done a deep condition, but  only a little and I think I used too much. Also having not used any shampoo of any kind in about 6 months, I think this is partly me not being used to it!

I actually don't have a lot to say about this product other than it's good and not too drying. It does what I want it to do and does it pretty well. It is nothing amazing, but it is just a low-poo, simple no fuss, so I don't expect to see any major results. I would buy it again as I think it works and is a reasonable price, especially considering how little is needed and how easily I can get it. I think this will be my go to low-poo from now on.


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Curly Hair & Swimming Advice.


Chlorine is bad for hair as it damaged the cuticle by stripping it of natural oils causing it to crack. This then leaves the inner layer or cortex exposed and prone to splitting causing split ends and leaving the hair dry and brittle. This is why hair tends to feel very dry and tangled after swimming.

A lot of people including myself worry about swimming and having the chlorine damage our hair. There are things that you can do to protect your hair/lessen the damage and they can be very effective. Although they might not completely protect your hair, they are very worthwhile, generally little effort and I have seen some great results.


How To Prevent Chlorine Damage.

Wet Hair Prior- Saturating you hair fully before you get into the water is always a good idea. It is as simple as the non-chlorinated water being absorbed by the hair first, leaving little room for the chlorinated water. I would use warm water and then finish with cold as it can help close the cuticle.

Coconut Oil - When I go swimming I coat my hair with Coconut Oil. Coconut Oil actually penetrates the hair shaft as well as coating the outside of the strand so is really great for keeping the moisture in and chlorine out. I don't know to what extent exactly is can keep the chlorinated water out but it is a great barrier and I have seen good results.  I usually try and apply it as long as possible before swimming to ensure full absorption. It is a method quite widely used by curlies.

Conditioner - I know of some people coating their hair in conditioner before they swim. It should work again by creating a barrier between the water and the hair. I think how effective it would be would surely depend on the content. This is not a method I use as surely the water would wash out the conditioner when you get in the pool? Plus I don't think my local swimming baths would be too impressed.

ACV - A lot of people do an Apple Cider Vinegar rinse after swimming to remove the chlorine as ACV is a natural cleanser. I do do this, but I am not sure to exactly what extent the ACV is able to remove the chlorine. But again it is fairly widely used.

Leave in Conditioner - Making sure hair is moisturised is a great way to ensure the chlorine will do minimum damage. Chlorine is very drying so I would use this both before and after swimming.

Warm Water - Just as cold water closes the cuticle warm water can help to open the cuticle of the hair allowing any bits of chlorine that have snuck in to be washed out.

Swimming Cap - Possibly reminiscent of school swimming lessons or synchronised swimming but they are probably the most fool proof way of protecting hair. 


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Thursday, 3 April 2014

Curly Hair Terminology - A Beginners Guide.


A list of all those 'terms' that I come across to do with curly hair, that may be confusing or unknown to people. I am going to try to keep it to the terms I think are the most helpful to keep it simple :)



2a/2b/2c/3a/3b... - This is a classification system used by many to determine the curl pattern of a persons hair. The system scales upwards with the tightness of curl. So a 2a would have loose waves and a 4c would have very tight, kinky curls.

Sulfates - Sulfates are detergents and it is what is used in shampoo to give hair that overly clean feeling. They are great cleaners and often used because they are very cheap, but they are also what is in household cleaning products and therefor strong. Consequently they will strip you hair of its important natural oils. An example of a common sulfate is Sodium Lauryl Sulfate.

Silicones/ Cones - Silicones are what is put into hair products to coat and smooth the cuticle of the hair to make the hair less frizzy and smooth. Silicones are not water-soluble and need to be removed by using Sulfates. If they are not removed then they cause build up and leave hair feeling greasy and weighed down. An example of a common silicone is Dimethicone.

No-Poo - Not using Shampoo.

Low-Poo - Using a gentler shampoo free from sulfates.

Pre-Poo - Something applied to the hair before shampooing/low-pooing. Often an oil, like coconut oil, applied hours before to allow time to be absorbed into the hair.

Protein - Protein is basically what our hair is made of. Hair is made of a protein called Keratin and this is what gives our hair strength and structure. Fine hair tends to have less protein making it lighter and less able to hold shape, whilst coarse hair has more making it stiffer and heavier.

Porosity - This is basically how well hair can absorb and contain moisture. It is affected by how tight the cuticle is which allows moisture to pass in and out of your hair. It is predetermined genetically but can also be affected by chemical treatments and heat.

Density - Density is just how code together the hairs on your head are. The easiest way to establish this is just by looking, if you can see your scalp very easily then you probably have low density, if you cannot see it at all through the hair then it is probably high.

Pineappling - A way to protect your curls overnight. This involves putting your hair in a very high up ponytail on the top of your hair. This should help keep your curls intact over night.




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Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Tightly Curlies Ingredients Dictionary for Hair Products!


Tightly Curly Ingredients Dictionary for Hair Care Products


Tightly Curly has done an impressive and vast ingredients dictionary for things used in hair products and it is great! It is really in-depth and there are loads of products in there! This is a really great resource, especially when you are trying to find new products. There are even references if you want to do your own research as well. It is such a time saver Thanks Tightly Curly!

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Tuesday, 1 April 2014

CG/Silicone/Sulfate Free Products UK



I will be updating this list regularly as I find out new products to add so keep checking for updates! :)



Shampoos/Low-Poos

Duchy Organics - Waitrose
Dead Sea Natural Mineral Shampoo - Boots
Green People Organic Daily Aloe Vera Shampoo - Waitrose
Burts Bees Very Volumizing Pomegranate and Soy Shampoo - John lewis
Burts Bees More Moisture Baobab Shampoo - It is exists but I don't know where?!
Burts Bees Baby Bee Shampoo and Wash - Boots, Debenham, Holland and Barrett + more
Organix Renewing Moroccan Argan Oil Shampoo - Boots
Macadamia Natural Oils Rejuvenating Shampoo - TKmaxx often has it.
Halos N Horns Berry Burst Shampoo & Detangler - Boots - Its for children, but it's CG.
Dr Organic Moroccan Argan Oil Shampoo- Holland and Barrett
Dr Organic Tea Tree Shampoo - Holland and Barrett
Dr Organic Manuka Honey Shampoo - Holland and Barrett
Dr Organic Aloe Vera Shampoo - Holland and Barrett
Dr Organic Rose Otto Shampoo - Holland and Barrett
Avalon Organics Rosemary Volumizing Shampoo - Holland and Barrett
Australian Organics For Dry, Coloured or Chemically Treated Hair - Holland and Barrett, Waitrose
The Body Shop Rainforest Shine Shampoo
The Body Shop Rainforest Moisture Shampoo
Mixed Chicks Sulfate Free Shampoo - Paul's Hair World
Living Proof Frizz Shampoo - John Lewis, Space NK
Kiels Sunflower Colour Preserving Shampoo - Kiels, John Lewis, House of Frazer, Debenhams etc.
Maui Moisture Nourish & Moisture Coconut Milk Shampoo - Boots
Maui Moisture Revive & Hydrate Shea Butter Shampoo
Maui Moisture Strength & Anti-Breakage Agave Shampoo 385ml
Maui Moisture Curl Quench Coconut Oil Shampoo
Maui Moisture Thicken & Restore Bamboo Fiber Shampoo







Conditoners/Co-washes

Tresemme Naturals Conditioners- Boots, Superdrug, Tescos etc..
Tiresome Perfectly (un) Done Conditioner - Boots, Superdrug...
V05 Conditioners - Apparently but I would double check this one.
Faith in Nature - Oxfam, online, Holland and Barrett (Only conditioners)
Naked Care-Boots
Original Source - I have real trouble finding the hair products but they do exist.
Dr Organic Manuka Honey Conditioner  - Holland and Barrett
Aveda - A lot for their conditioners are but not all.
Aussie Miracle Moist Conditioner - Boots, Tesco, Sainsburys + more
Burts Bees Very Volumizing Pomegranate and Soy Conditioner - John Lewis, Boots
Bumble and Bumble Leave in Conditioner - Boots
Bumble and Bumble Seaweed Conditioner - Boots
Rainforest Shine Conditioner - The Body Shop
Rainforest Moisture Conditioner - The Body Shop
Rainforest Volumizing Conditioner - The Body Shop
Rainforest Radiance Conditioner - The Body Shop
Banana Conditioner - The Body Shop
Garnier Ultimate Blends Collection - All but the 'Marvellous Transformer' seem to be CG.
Naked 'Little Miracle" Leave in Conditioner - Boots
Neal's Yard - Nurturing Rose Conditioner - Neal's Yard, Waitrose.
Neal's Yard - Nourishing Lavender Conditioner - Neal's Yard, Waitrose.
Big Solid Conditioner - Lush
R&B Hair Mosituriser - Lush
Superdrug 'Extracts' Coconut & Sweet Almond, For Dry/Damaged Hair.
Superdrug 'Extracts' Red Cherry & Fig, For Fine Hair.
Superdrug 'Extracts' Green Apple & Tea Tree, For Dry/Normal Hair.
Superdrug 'Extracts' Raspberry & Macadamia Nut, For Coloured Hair.
Umberto Giannini, Bouncy Curls, Enhancing Conditioner.
Palmers Olive Oil Formula Co-wash Cleansing Conditioner - Selected Superdrug stores.
Living Proof No Frizz Conditioner - John Lewis, Space NK, House of Frazer, Debenhams, Fenwick etc.
Yes To Cucumbers Colour Protection Conditioner - Boots, TK Maxx
Yes To Cucumbers Volumising Conditioner - Boots
Yes To Coconuts Ultra Moisture Conditioner - Boots
Yes To Carrots Scalp Relief Conditioner - Boots
Yes To Carrots Pampering Conditioner - Boots
Yes To Blueberries Smooth and Shine Conditioner - Boots
Mane 'N' Tail Colour Protect Conditioner - Boots
L'Oréal Paris Botanicals Safflower Rich Infusion Conditioning Balm - Boots
L'Oréal Paris Botanicals Geranium Radiance Remedy Conditioning Balm
L'Oréal Botanicals Camelina Smooth Ritual Conditioning Balm
L'Oréal Botanicals Coriander Strength Cure Conditioning Balm
Maui Moisture Nourish & Moisture Coconut Milk Conditioner - Boots
Maui Moisture Revive & Hydrate Shea Butter Conditioner
Maui Moisture Strength & Anti-Breakage Agave Conditioner
Maui Moisture Curl Quench Coconut Oil Conditioner
Maui Moisture Thicken & Restore Bamboo Fiber Conditioner



Styling

Bumble and Bumble Curl Conscious Holding Foam - Boots/online.
Beeswax Texturising Wax - The Body Shop.
Rainforest Radiance Detangling Spray - The Body Shop.
Dirty Styling Cream - Lush.
Sea Spray Hair Mist - Lush.
Moroccan Curling Perfection (Organix) - Boots.
The Body Shop Coconut Oil Hair Shine
Boots Essentials - Curl Creme - Boots.
Trevor Sorbie, Curls and Waves, Firm Hold Curl Cream - Boots.
Umberto Giannini, Shapely Curls Defining Mousse - Boots
Umberto Giannini, Create a Curl Scrunching Jelly - Boots.
Lee Stafford Arganoil from Morocco Miracle Shine Spray - Boots
Living Proof No Frizz Nourishing Styling Cream - 236ml - £32 - Space NK, John Lewis
Living Proof Flex Shaping Spray - £22 - John Lewis, Space NK, House of Frazer, Debenhams
Living Proof Weightless Styling Spray - 200ml - £32 - John Lewis, Space NK, House of Frazer
Living Proof Curl Defining Styling Cream - 236ml - £24 - John Lewis, Space NK, House of Frazer
Living Proof Full Thickening Cream - 109ml - £22 - Space NK
Living Proof Full Root Lifting Spray - 163ml - £22 - Space NK
Living Proof Full Thickening Mousse - 142g - £22 - John Lewis, Space NK, House of Frazer, Debenhams, Fenwick etc.
L'Oréal Botanicals Safflower Rich Infusion Softening Ointment - Boots
L'Oréal Botanicals Geranium Radiance Remedy Shine Vinegar 
L'Oréal Botanicals Camelina Smooth Ritual Frizz Antidote 
L'Oréal Botanicals Coriander Strength Cure Strength Potion
Maui Moisture Curl Quench Coconut Oil Curl Milk - Boots
Maui Moisture Curl Quench Coconut Oil Curl Smoothie
Maui Moisture Heal & Hydrate Shea Butter Detangler Leave inMaui Moisture Strength & Anti-Breakage Agave Mask

Treatments and Masks

Hair Doctor - Lush
Shine So Bright - Lush
Superbalm - Lush
Rainforest Moisture Hair Butter - The Body Shop
Rainforest Radience Hair Butter - The Body Shop
Aussie 3 Minute Miracle Light Aussome Volume Deep Treatment Mousse - Boots, Superdrug
Aussie 3 Minute Miracle Light Mega Deep Treatment Mousse - Boots, Superdrug
    • L'Oréal Botanicals Safflower Rich Infusion Masque - Boots
  • L'Oréal Botanicals Geranium Radiance Remedy Masque 
  • L'Oréal Botanicals Camelina Smooth Ritual Masque
  • Maui Moisture Heal & Hydrate Shea Butter - Boots
  • Maui Moisture Nourish & Moisture Coconut Milk Weightless Oil Mist
L'Oréal Botanicals Coriander Strength Cure Masque







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