Monday, September 26, 2011

Let's Talk Hair: Frustrating FAIRY KNOTS

Greetings, Beautiful People..I pray all is well with everyone.
Ok, so I love to write on subjects that I receive a lot of questions on..And one question in particular that I receive many inqiries on are dreadful 'fairy knots'. Throughout our return to O'Natural-ness, we have all experienced the haunting fairy knots and they can be extremely frustrating. Especially when we think we are doing all that we can to prevent them and keep our tresses healthy. So let's just take a look at this dilema and see if we can shed some light on this subject.

FAIRY KNOTS..What Are They?
  • Tiny Knots that appear on single strand of hair close to the hairs tips(ends). They are a common and a natural occurrence in kinky-curly hair.
  • They are caused by the hair having a tight curl pattern which results in the hair wrapping around itself resulting in a tiny single strand knot.

FAIRY KNOTS...What Causes Them?
  • Well, this is going to sound like a slight contradiction, but frequent wear of protective styles such as braid outs, twist outs or fros.
  • Not sealing the ends at night. Sealing your ends at night means to apply a butter or natural oil to the ends of your hair for extra moisture and protection at night before securing with a satin scarf or bonnet.

FAIRY KNOTS..How To Minimize Them
  • Moisturize, Seal and Protect those ends at night before bed by first moisturizing with water, a moisturizing mist or another water based product, then apply a heavy natural butter, such as shea butter, mango butter, avocado butter or other butters or oils such as extra virgin coconut oil, olive oil, avocado oil, jojoba and other oils to the ends (tips) of your hair, then cover with a satin bonnet, scarf or sleep on a satin pillowcase. Because our ends are the oldest and most fragile part of the hair, they tend to be the driest and come across the most friction. Moisturizing and sealing the ends daily or nightly proves to be a huge help in minimizing knots and dryness. 
  • Keep tresses moisturized by proper conditioning, especially deep conditioning, and use an all natural leave in.
  • Minimize combing naturally curly-kinky hair while dry. Should you decide to detangle on dry hair, apply a light oil such as coconut oil, jojoba oil or grapeseed oil and gently begin finger detangling. When using a combing tool, always comb hair with a wide tooth comb or detangling brush while hair is soaking wet and slippery with conditioner. Comb starting from ends to roots.
  • If you have fairy knots, take some shears that have only been used on hair and cut them out immediately on sight. If the knots are left untreated, they will, more than likely, continue to knot up from the ends and cause breakage. (Fyi: breakage is when you do not see a white tip at the end of the fallen hair. When a white tip is seen, this is shedding which is a normal occurrence in the hair cycle).  
  • A wonderful tip addition from a beautiful naturalista on the Natural Girls Rock group site said: After co-washing, completely rinse your hair, then take the oil of your choice, mix it with a little water and pour it all over your hair. Then, lightly rinse with cool water, known as 'oil rinsing'. She stated that she noticed a huge difference, thanks Kelli!!!
  • Though these tips may help, you may still experience some knots. Don't panic though they may be frustrating, they do not play a major role in hair loss nor not being able to retain length.

    Ok, I hope this was as helpful to you as it was for me..Until next time, A bientot!!!

     Have a Happy Natty Day!!

    credits: some info found at

    Wednesday, September 21, 2011

    I've Got A Story To Tell: Meet the Stunning KAI MCKINNON

     Greetings Everyone..I pray all is well with everyone.
    Well we have another treat of a feature today with Kai McKinnon. Kai is a beautiful natural whom I've had the pleasure of meeting on Facebook. I recently had the pleasure of meeting Kai at the World Natural Hair Show on September 10, 2011. Kai was an absolute pleasure to meet in person along with her beautiful baby girl and her two beautiful sisters. Her smile is even more beautiful in person than on pictures..So, without furthur ado, meet Kai McKinnon.

    1. What Inspired You To Go O'Natural?
    My natural journey started, like so many others, with the birth of my daughter Olivia Marie. At the time, I wasn’t even thinking of going natural. I had shoulder length hair that had grown longer and thicker during my pregnancy and I loved it. I put flat twists in during and after the birth so I wouldn’t have to worry about it. About 3 months after the baby was born it started falling out by the handful! I knew I would lose some but this frightened me. I was afraid to comb it! I lost all of my sides and my hair was so thin. On top of that, all the yummy smelling J&J baby products I received during my baby shower was causing my baby’s skin to break out and her hair was so dry. I turned to the internet for help. I came across a lot of websites talking about natural products and the reasons for dry thin hair and I started using only all natural products on her. The Shea Moisture baby line is wonderful! I then made the decision to go natural to be an inspiration for her. How could I raise her to embrace and love her self if I wasn’t doing the same? I dove right in and soaked up so much information. I found your website during a search and spent a blissful week reading your posts from day 1. I learned so much information and felt so ignorant about what relaxers had been doing to my hair. I had been relaxed since I was 10. I was going to do a long transition for a year. I used curlformers which I loved and roller sets-no heat! I stopped using chemicals cold turkey and started with all natural products starting with the Shea Moisture line which I heart! About 3 months in I got Senegalese twists which I loved. I kept them in for about 6 weeks using a daily leave in conditioner spray that I made myself. After 6 weeks I tried to take them out and my hair was so matted and tangled that I spent 3 hours trying to detangle. I gave up and yanked and pulled and tore until I was left with hair to my ear, a sore scalp, and tears. I went to the salon the next day and did my BC. I have never regretted that decision and I’m in love with my TWA!

    2.How long have you been a beautiful natural?

    My last relaxer was January 15th and I did my BC on June 26th. I did another mini buzz to shape and get the last of the frizz off on July 15th. I have about 2 ½ to 2 ¾ inches of hair right now. If anyone would have told me a year ago I would have a Grace Jones and love it I would have called them crazy! 

    3. In regards to natural hair, do you feel as though the same stigmas of hair type exist, for example, do you hear people use the term 'good hair' or 'good grade of hair' in regards to certain hair textures?

    I definitely feel there is a stigma about “good vs bad hair.” I hear comments like “oh I could never go natural because I don’t have that kind of hair”.  I tell them there is no such thing, hair is hair, it’s all good hair because its GOD given. Stereotypes are perpetuated in music videos and on tv because all you see are long haired (weaved) women. Very rarely do you see natural Black hair and when you do it’s always loose wavy curls. Until we learn to embrace what grows naturally out of our hair we will never overcome the negative stereotypes that other ethnicities place upon us.

    4. Do you feel as though most black men are supportive to natural hair? How about other nationalities? 

    I think that it is starting to become a little more accepted by our Black men, especially as more and more women embrace it. My husband is still struggling with his acceptance though. He supports my decision, yet doesn’t really care for it yet. He thinks my hair cut looks better than he thought it would but doesn’t really touch it because he says it reminds him of a boy. I tell him he’s just going to have to get used to it and I’m doing it for our daughter. Plus, its hair! It will grow out again. I think other nationalities are more accepting because they are used to Black women being “creative” in our hair styles and they view this as another way we can style our hair. I will say I’ve been getting a lot of positive response from all men since I cut my hair. I think its because I have stepped up my makeup and style game to match my new found confidence and love of self!

    5. How do you maintain such beautiful coils?

    I don’t have a strict regimen but I make sure I cover the basics. I co wash a few times a week, shampoo maybe once a week or when I want to try a new product on freshly washed hair. I try to deep condition once a week using Shea Moisture DC mask and add olive oil and honey, and I moisturize with water or water based leave in and seal with an oil or butter. My favorite products right now are Shea Moisture for shampoo/conditioner, V05 Moisture milk for my co washes, Kinky Curly Knot today for a leave in, and Kinky Curly Curly Custard for my wash n go’s. For moisture I love shea butter based moisturizers and I use Naturalista Cosmetics Juicy leave in and your Natty Butter.  I usually do a wash n go and put in a headband. I also did my first teeny afro. I sleep on a satin pillowcase.

    6. Do you have any words of wisdom to pass on to others striving for a natural lifestyle?

    Keep it simple and DO YOUR RESEARCH!!! I dove right into finding as much information as possible so when I was ready to chop, I was ready! I knew which products I wanted to try, I had a basic regimen, and I knew how to maintain my natural hair. If you jump right in without any background information you are apt to slip right back into a perm because it’s “easier”. Also, start off simple. I could never find a basic regimen. Here’s a good one: Co wash 2-3 x a week, shampoo on Sundays followed by a DC. Wet hair with water or use a water based leave in conditioner, seal with a butter or oil. Cover your head or pillow with satin. That’s really all you need! Also, try not to become a product junky. I admit I was obsessed with products until I found all of things I like. Find some good bloggers and facebook pages like this one and enjoy your new freedom!

    I hope you enjoyed Kai's feature as much as I did!!!

    Meet Kai:

    Thank you for joining us to read our feature. If you would like to be featured on All Things O'Natural, please send an email to and use the header 'I've Got A Story'.. Until next time, a bientot!

    Sunday, September 18, 2011

    Sloppy Date Night Updo...VIDEO


    Hola Chicas/Chicos..I pray all is well with everyone.

    Ok, here I go hamming it up again with another video on a style that can go from corporate to cocktails. This is a look that my husband definitely favors and you are sure to get many compliments. So, I hope you enjoy!!

    Products Used:

    Happy Natty Day

    Wednesday, September 7, 2011

    Scalp Issues? These Ingredients Could Be The Cause

    Hola Chicas/Chicos..I pray all is well with everyone!!
    So, if you know me, or follow me on my FB fan page, you know that I am a fanatic about all natural and organic ingredients. Not only do I love them because of the joy it brings to have healthy hair, but I love that I don't have to be concerned about serious side effects that many synthetic ingredients can carry.

    Throughout this journey, I have come across many many people who struggle with scalp issues (dandruff, dry scalp, itchy scalp, psoriasis, dermatitis, alopecia). Now I know that diet, stress and allergies can aid in these issues, but another important factor that plays its part well in aiding in these issues are harsh synthetic ingredients. So, let's just take a glance at some of the ingredients that are in shampoos, conditioners and stylers that can cause scalp issues.

    Lauryl and Laureth Sulfates: 
    Detergents are the ingredients used in shampoos to bind with oil and dirt so they can be rinsed away. Common detergents in shampoos include sodium lauryl sulfate, sodium laureth sulfate and the related ammonium lauryl sulfate and ammonium laureth sulfate. These ingredients are also surfactants--ingredients that change the surface tension of water. They are responsible for the thick foaming or lathering action provided by some shampoos.These ingredients causes greater irritation to the skin the longer they are in contact with the skin. The sodium lauryl sulfate found in our soaps is exactly the same as you would find in a car wash or even a garage, where it is used to degrease car engines. It is also well documented that it denatures skin proteins, which causes not only irritation, but also allows environmental contaminants easier access to the lower, sensitive layers of the skin. SLS is also absorbed into the body from skin application. Once it has been absorbed, one of the main effects of sodium lauryl sulfate is to mimic the activity of the hormone Oestrogen. This has many health implications and may be responsible for a variety of health problems from PMS and Menopausal symptoms to dropping male fertility and increasing female cancers such as breast cancer, where oestrogen levels are known to be involved.


    TEA-lauryl sulfate, or triethanolamine lauryl sulfate, is another detergent, surfactant and foam-boosting chemical found in shampoos, conditioners and stylers (namely EcoStyler Gel). Determined dangerous by the FDA as early as 1977, nitrosamines penetrate skin and cause damage to skin cells, including sores on the scalp.


    Fragrance is what gives shampoos their pleasing scents. Sometimes fragrance agents are identified by name--geraniol, linalool and citronellol are just some examples of naturally-derived fragrance chemicals. Sometimes the term “fragrance” is listed among ingredients. Unfortunately, a listing for fragrance or parfum can indicate the presence of up to 4,000 different chemicals.

    Penetration Enhancers:

     Penetration enhancers are seen most commonly in moisturizing shampoos or two-in-one shampoos and conditioners. These ingredients increase the amount of moisture that penetrates the hair follicle by chemically altering the structure of the hair to allow entry to emollient ingredients.Although approved by the FDA for use in cosmetics, penetration enhancers may cause long-term damage to your skin and hair. Because they push chemicals deeply into the skin and hair, these ingredients may ravage your skin over time, causing dryness, sores, rashes and an overall feeling of pain or itchiness. Absorption enhancers include propylene glycol, ammonium glycolate, disodium EDTA and lecitin. These ingredients usually serve double duty as humectants or preservatives.

    Ok, I hope this help. Not only do we want to ensure we have healthy hair and scalp, but healthy insides as well..

    Happy Healthy Day!

    credits: some info found at