A Hair Story…

20140331-091422.jpgYesterday was washday and I decided to use my Nothing But Sampler Pack.

I used the Clarifying Shampoo first. I liked the consistency of it. It was more like a jelly than runny like most shampoos. I got good lather and my hair felt really clean after just one wash. It worked well as a clarifying shampoo, especially after a week of wearing my hair straight. It was just what I needed.

I used the Creamy Cleanser next. I generally don’t like creamy cleansers because I don’t co-wash my hair. This one was no different. I didn’t feel like it really cleansed or conditioned. I couldn’t imagine using it alone as a cleanser. Then again, according to the instructions it was the second step, so maybe it wasn’t meant to be used alone.

Next I used the Intense Healing Mask. I was a bit skeptical at first about how well it would work, but it felt great when I put it in my hair. I left it in for about 30 minutes. To my surprise, my hair felt moisturized after. Of all of the products I tried from this line, this was my favorite.

These products were mostly unscented, which was cool for a change. I’d rather that than a scented product with a scent I dislike.

I hope you find this review helpful.

XOXO,
Rece

Many wonder if you can workout with your natural hair straightened. Yes! Yes! …and Yes!

I used to be nervous about working out with straightened hair because I knew that would be the end of my style… until I tweaked my method of prepping.

We need to be beautiful inside and out and working out will help us achieve just that.

Here are 7 Steps I use to prep my straightened hair before a workout:

1. I apply a little bit of extra virgin olive oil (my oil of choice) and/or a straightening serum mostly to my edges. This is a key step because it helps to prevent the hair from reverting when you start sweating.

2. I smooth my hair back into a secure ponytail.

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3. I wrap the length of my ponytail into a bun being careful not to let the ends of my hair fall on the inside of the bun so that they are as far away from the sweat as possible.

4. Secure the ends onto my bun using a jaw clip.

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5. Wrap a cotton scarf around my head to keep my edges laid down while I workout. I use a cotton scarf because it’s a pretty absorbent material compared to a satin or silk scarf. Leave the flap open in the back to allow some air to circulate.

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6. Once I’m finished working out, I leave the cotton scarf on until after I shower. I then brush my edges (without taking the ponytail out otherwise the curls will have free reign) and wrap a silk/satin scarf around the edges to maintain the smoothness until my hair dries.

7. Once my hair dries, I can style as usual.

This method works well. I workout hard, but I’m not running marathons or anything!

XOXO,
Rece

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This Sunday I had the pleasure of having my hair done by London AKA @MissLondonBella (on Instagram)

London is based in Atlanta, but comes to NY for a week or two every couple of months to style hair.

I first learned of her from @PrincessLinzz (on Instagram) when she got her hair done a few months ago. I was in absolute love with London’s work when I first saw the pics, so of course I was looking to see when she would be back in NY.

I haven’t had anyone touch my hair since I’ve been natural and even when I was relaxed, only a handful of people have done my hair. I’m extremely particular with who I let do my hair, so this was a BIG deal for me. I was getting nervous as the appointment approached and even thought of canceling. Eek!

As I looked through London’s older pics, the caption for one spoke of a client who was nervous, full of questions and had a few bad experiences. London stated that her job is to put her clients at ease and encourage them. She mentioned that the client left with a smile and that made her smile.

This stuck in my head because it’s how I felt before going. I was super nervous and full of questions. I was wondering what products she would use, would my hair come out as nice as everyone else’s, will she trim too much like others have done in the past and most important, will my hair curl back up when I wash it.

London was very welcoming when I first arrived. We chatted for a bit (absolute sweetheart) and she took the time to examine my hair before she started. She asked several questions about how I care for my hair and how I like to wear my hair and also gave advice on how I can improve the health of my hair, styling tips, styling tools and products. She listened to everything I said and really reassured me that I was in good hands. It also helps that her hair is natural as well.

For this visit, I got a wash, treatment, trim and silk press. My hair was so silky when she was done! Literally gone with the wind fabulous! She trimmed my hair nicely and I didn’t leave with several inches cut off which was one of my biggest concerns.

I am extremely happy with her work. The pics don’t even do it any justice. The only thing I have yet to see is my curls pop back when I wash my hair. That won’t be for another week or two though.

I highly recommend her if you’re in Atlanta or NY… or close enough to travel there. Just make sure you don’t take up all of the appointment times because I’ll certainly be back!

Before…

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Blow dried….

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After! Love the light bouncy curls!

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XOXO,
Rece

As you know, I’ve tried and LOVE Hydratherma Naturals products. Hydratherma Naturals is graciously hosting a GIVEAWAY just as I’ve crossed the 6K mark for followers on Instagram. How exciting!

The winner will receive the Hydratherma Naturals SLS FREE Cleansing and Conditioning Collection Set! This set includes:

sls free cleansing and conditioning

  • SLS Free Moisture Plus Hair Cleanser 12 oz.
  • Moisture Boosting Deep Conditioning Treatment 8 oz.
  • Amino Plus Protein Deep Conditioning Treatment 8 oz.
  • Hair Growth Oil 8 oz. 

Please enter the giveaway by clicking below!
A HAIR STORY 6K GIVEAWAY WITH HYDRATHERMA NATURALS

The giveaway ends on 3.27.14 at 11:59pm EST and is only open to US residents or those with a US mailing address.

XOXO,
Rece

For all of the newbies to the natural hair party and maybe those of your who’ve let years pass by without really taking the time to get to know your natural hair… here are a few gems I’ve learned along the way.

  • Try new things! Each person is unique and despite how much your hair texture may look like someone else’s hair, or your curl friend got the PERFECT twistout from using a particular product, you have to try different things to determine what works best for you. Take what others say with a grain of salt and always experiment for yourself. You’d be surprised by what you discover about your natural hair.
  • Moisturize! As much as it’s said, it’s the absolute truth! Dry hair breaks and despite how much it may grow, if you’re not retaining what you have, you’ll never see that growth. Wash your hair regularly. Deep condition regularly. Use a good moisturizer, especially on the ends of your hair, whether it be butters, oils, water based moisturizers etc. Let your hair tell you what it likes.
  •  Your natural hair WILL NOT always do what you want it to do when you want it to do it. In fact, more often than not, it will be completely uncooperative until you figure out what works. It has a mind of it’s own. Instead of our hair conforming to our wishes, we must accept the fact that it’s doing its own thing and embrace that. Trust me… it’s easier said than done.
  • Get used to seeing yourself with a new look. For me, I was used to seeing myself with the sleek, straight look of my relaxed hair so wearing my hair natural was soooo different. Seeing myself differently and accepting it was probably the second hardest part of my natural hair journey. (The first being adjusting to having short hair after I cut off my relaxed hair). You may be rocking a BIG fro now, or two strand twists or bantu knots. Whatever the style, accept the fact that it may take a little bit of time to adjust to seeing yourself that way. So what if every hair isn’t laying down, or your hair expands as the day goes by, or your edges curl up a little!
  • Be kind to your hair and love your hair at every stage. You never know what stage you’ll end up missing. Your hair is just another expression of you being YOU!

Have a gem to add? I’d love to hear it!

XOXO,
Rece

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If you follow me on Instagram @AHairStory (which you should), you know I’m on my second month of taking Manetabolism Hair Vitamins.

I began the Healthy Hair Growth Challenge on February 1st. I began taking Manetabolism Hair Vitamins, two capsules a day as instructed.

This was my beginning length check. My hair was twisted, but I untwisted a twist in the back to get an accurate length check. I forgot to untwist the front one though. Oops!

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My mom and my sis joined me on the challenge as well.

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To answer some burning questions…

I did see some awesome growth after just one month. I did not experience any breakouts. I did have a headache the first day and none after. Was it related to the vitamins? Idk. I didn’t take a break in between month 1 and month 2, so I can not say whether there is shedding when you stop taking them. I will say that I was taking Hair Volume from GNC prior to starting Manetabolism and there was a break in between and I didn’t experience any shedding.

The dose is two capsules a day. I recommend taking it with a meal and drinking an adequate amount of water because it does contain fat soluble and water soluble vitamins.

Here’s my growth for a little over one month. Focus on the length in comparison to my sweater.

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I will continue to take Manetabolism hair vitamins. As I say… Ankle length or bust!

XOXO,
Rece

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If you follow me on Instagram @AHairStory, I’ve mentioned that I used a new hair product. Here it is!

I began using Hydratherma Naturals on Friday and my first impression… LOVE!

I’m big on smells, so if something doesn’t smell good or is too fragrant, I’m less likely to use it. These products completely won me over with the smell. They have a wonderful, light, sweet fragrance.

I used the SLS Free Moisture Plus Hair Cleanser first. I’m pretty new to cleansers since I’ve been using Selsun Blue for so long and recently stopped. With this cleanser, a little goes a long way. It smells very fresh and lathers just enough for me to get a clean feeling. My hair felt moisturized and not stripped after.

Next, I used the Amino Plus Protein Deep Conditioning Treatment. My hair needed a good treatment since I wore it straight for two weeks. I’ve found it hard to find great protein conditioners that still leave your hair feeling moisturized. This is definitely one! Again, a little goes a long way. I left it in longer than the recommended time (10-20 minutes) because I got caught up doing other things.

Once I rinsed out the conditioner, I towel dried my hair and applied some of the Protein Balance Leave-in Conditioner, followed by the Daily Moisturizing Growth Lotion, then the Hair Growth Oil mostly to my ends to keep them moisturized.

The Hair Growth Oil is probably the one product I expected to not smell so great as all of the other did (because most oils don’t smell good) and I was pleasantly surprised that it had a very light fragrance and not an odor.

I twisted my hair into 12 twists and sprayed some of the Follicle Mist on my scalp. It smells a little like coconut. I didn’t massage it in as the instructions stated, because my hair was already twisted. I should have read the instructions first huh? Maybe next time.

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This was my twistout. My hair felt soft and moisturized.

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I retwisted my hair last night using the Daily Moisturizing Growth Lotion and the Hair Growth Oil. I’m hoping to keep my hair twisted for most of the week. I can’t hide under my winter hat anymore though.

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I will continue to use these products. Based on my first impression, I highly recommend them. If I had to choose just 3, I would definitely go with the SLS Free Moisture Plus Hair Cleanser, Amino Plus Protein Deep Conditioning Treatment and the Daily Moisturizing Growth Lotion.

Hydratherma has so many different products to choose from. You can check them out at HealthyHairJourney.com

The product of the month is the Herbal/Amino Clarifying Shampoo and it’s currently listed at 20% off on Amazon, but the sale ends tomorrow 3/17/14.

You can also follow Hydratherma Naturals on Instagram at @Hydratherma

I hope you found this review helpful.

XOXO,
Rece

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