Wednesday, November 28, 2012


Greetings, Beautiful People...I pray all is well with everyone. 
Now, let's chat about one of the culprits that truly aid in dry hair..and that's PRODUCT BUILDUP.
Before we get into the how of how to rid the hair of product buildup, let's chat about how it affects the hair.

  • Locks Moisture Out...prevents the hair from receiving moisture which aids in dryness and brittleness. 
  • Greasy/Peasy..Product buildup gives hair a greasy feeling and instead of it being properly moisturized and have a feeling of hydration, it has a feeling of grimy buildup.
  • Clogs the pores on the scalp...clogs the pores of the scalp thereby aiding in further scalp issues
  • This new product just didn't work..Product buildup prevents the hair from responding to the use of new products when trying for the 1st time. Note... It's always important to clarify the hair when using a new product for the 1st time to truly see how the product is working.
    And be sure to deep condition anytime you shampoo/clarify cleanse your hair.

How To Prevent or Rid the Hair of Product Buildup

In order to prevent product buildup from creating dryness, it's best to do a thorough cleansing of the hair using a cleanser or DIY (
do it yourself) treatment to thoroughly cleanse the hair. Many shampoos are not formulated strong enough to remove some natural oils such as castor oil and many synthetic ingredients, so a clarifying poo would be the best way to go. I mention some awesome natural clarifiers below.

Co-washing (conditioner washing) is a great way to lightly moisturize the hair and aid in retaining moisture in the hair. However, co-washing is not formulated to be strong enough to remove synthetic ingredients and many oils, so it's a great idea to clarify the hair at least monthly (if using all aural ingredients) and twice per month (if using products with synthetic ingredients). Conditioners are also usually formulated at lower ph levels to help close the cuticle which is mot beneficial for cleansing the hair thoroughly, and they are great for temporarily restoring moisture and temporarily repairing the hair. However, anytime I cleanse (which is usually every 3-4 weeks) I use my Natty ACV Hair and Scalp Mist as a pre cleanse and as a final rinse (as a final rinse, I simply spray the mist onto my scalp and hair after final rinsing). I also use the Natty ACV Mist to keep my scalp clean in between cleansing. 

Some great all natural cleansers are SheaMoisture African black Soap Shampoo, Dudu Osum Black soap shampoo, Terressentials pure earth wash, the bentonite clay treatment (of course there are tons more). Apple Cider Vinegar is also a great way to help with the cleansing process of removing product buildup. It also help to protect the scalp from fungi, debris, bacteria and other contaminants found in tap water and environmental elements. A simple ACV rinse is to combine 1 TSP of ACV to 8 oz of cool distilled or filtered water and pour onto clean, conditioned and rinsed hair as your final rinse. Do not rinse the mixture out. You can also combine this mixture in a nice applicator bottle and apply to hair and scalp as a pre cleanse for helping to remove buildup. ACV also helps to close the cuticle on the hair helping the hair minimize frizz and impart sheen to the hair. Check out this great video how to of a helpful cleansing method to help rid the hair of product buildup: Cleansing Video .

As always, I hope this tip was helpful and remember, clean hair and scalp = happy hair and scalp.

For the look above
Knotty Gal Earrings by Dope Crochet
Mineral Lipstick in Classic by Motives

Friday, November 16, 2012


Hola Chicas/Chicos...I pray all is well with everyone!
Ok, so I get this question a ton times ten on regimens for little Natty kids, so I thought, this would be a great opportunity to share how I care for my little one's tresses to keep their hair clean, moisturized and most times, neat, lol (wink). This regimen, I do for our 2 year old and 3 year old son. Our olderst, who is 6, likes to cleanse and moisturize his own hair since he had it cut, but before that, his regimen was the same as the info below when I was growing it out. Now, for our newborn (1 month old), he's slightly different in that, I dilute the cleanser more, but I do moisturize and seal in the moisture just as I will mention below. And as always, I hope this helps, guys!


  • Hmm, great question, how in the world does she sit still while you cleanse..First, let me say, I found a method that works for us and that is, I do most of the cleansing process outside of the tub or sink..I mist the hair with our Natty ACV Hair and Scalp mist to loosen the dirt and buildup, especially from the scalp..I even allow them to spray their own hair to let them feel as though they are cleansing their own hair..Now, I usually do this while a great show is on (Dora, Peppa Pig, SuperWHY, Yo Gabba Gabba or some other fantastic kid show) or I let them play on their Ipad in a comfortable position so they are distracted or we sing..loudly, and I proceed to spray away and massage their scalp. 
  • Once the hair is hydrated and damp, I finger detangle, gently, and place our daughter's hair into 2 twists or braids (same method I use when cleansing my hair. Placing hair in twists or braids prevents the hair from retangling during the cleansing process).
  • Once the hair is in the twists or braids, I apply cleanser to my hands (usually Dudu Osum's African Black Soap shampoo..only all natural for my little ones) and gently massage the cleanser into her scalp, first, then undo one twist/braid at a time and apply a little cleanser down the hair and retwist/braid back up and move to the next one. Doing a massage while cleansing gets the blood circulating promoting healthy hair growth..and kids love it!
  • This entire process takes about maybe 10-15 minutes..That's 10-15 mintues that you have saved water, detangled and cleansed the hair.
  • PLEASE NOTE: I only shampoo cleanse our little ones' hair once per month. Weekly, I co-wash (conditioner wash) the hair, which helps in retaining moisture in the hair. This works for us because we do not use synthetic ingredients or tons of product that would require a thorough cleansing using a shampoo as often.


  • Now that the cleansing part is over, it's time to head to the bath or sink to rinse. By this time, she is calm and ready.
  • Once in the bath/sink, I unravel one twist/braid at a time and rinse the hair with lukewarm water and run my fingers through the hair allowing the weight of the water to help further the detangling process. 
  • Voila, hair cleansed and rinsed and ready for conditioning.


  • Once the hair is rinsed, I apply our Natty Moist conditioner to the hair and finger it throughone sectionat a time to ensure each strand is coated, then retwist/braid.
  • While the conditioner is marinating on the hair(5-10 minutes at the most), we have fun bath time.
  • After about 5-10 minutes, we rinse the conditioner, and I pour a little Natty ACV Hair and Scalp Mist onto her hair as a final rinse...hmmm, what does this do, you ask? Well, the ACV helps to protect the hair and scalp from any possible soam residue, protects the scalp and hair from contaminants, fungi and bacteria possibities from tap water and it helps to close the cuticle, giving hair it's smooth appearance. (If using plain ACV rinse, just add 1 TSP of ACV to 8 oz of cool water and pour onto hair and scalp. The smell will disappear within minutes)
  • Apply a little Natty Moist as her leave in
  • Seal the moisturized hair with our Natty Butter to ensure that the moisture is locked in. Remember, whenever you apply a moisturizer (water or a water based product), you must LOCK/SEAL the moisture in with a butter, oil, or combo of both. This is what helps the hair remain moisturized. I never apply oil or butter to her scalp as our scalp produces natural sebum and when we oil the scalp we are in essence clogging the pores and preventing the scalp from producing it's natural oils. Once the scalp malfunction and this could potentially lead to scalp issues such as dry flaky scalp. The only time oil is pretty safe to apply is if doing a 'hot oil treatment' which is washed out after a certain time.


  • Now that the hair is clean, moisturized and sealed, you can style as you choose. Now, I rarely allow our daughter's hair to be out due to the possiblity of retangling and achieving knots. So, I either place them in 4 plaits and wrap them in bantu knots or I give her some puffs, which I twist at night.
  • Now, at night, because she wouldn't dare keep a satin scarf or bonnet on her head, I just place a satin pillow in her bed to keep her tresses moisturized.


  • DO NOT... Detangle on hair that is dry!! This is a huge culprit for breakage and split ends..and it's quite painful for the little one. 
  • DO... Always gently detangle on damp or wet hair and begin detangling from tip, working your way up to the root.
  • DO..When remoisturizing hair thrughout the week..FIRST, apply water or a water based product to hydrate the hair, then apply a butter or oil to lock in the moisture.
  • DO NOT..Place hair in styles that create too much tention on the hair, especially the edges.
  • DO...Keep ends properly moisturized and sealed. 
  • DO NOT..Try as hard as possible to work on the hair when your little ones are fed, not cranky or matter how gentle, they will make a fuss, so try to designate a convenient time when you are both alert and in great spirits.
  • DO..Use a wide tooth comb as your method of detangling should you choose to use a detangling tool..Or a detangling brush such as the denman or other wide tooth brush
  • DO..Remember, if you make it a non hassle pleasant hair grooming time, it won't feel so much like a battle of the ages!! My mom was even impressed with how well our daughter doesn't struggle to get her hair done..SCORE!!


 He has since cut his hair :-(


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Saturday, November 10, 2012


24 months post BC

Hola Chicas/Chicos..I pray all is well with everyone. Ok, now talk about a topic that's super popular in the natural hair community and that's 'HAIR GROWTH'. There are loads of products that promise growth, hundreds of techniques that promise growth and more..Now, while we may not all be obssessed with it, we all love to see a little growth here and there within our tresses. However, when that want turns into an obsessed need, that's when we find ourselves trying every product on the market, trying every technique that many have never even thought nor heard of, just to see our tresses move one step further than what it was.. YESTERDAY!! That can definitely get us into some hot water and create bigger issues. So, let's just chat about what actually affects our hair growth. Now this one may get pretty lengthy and I will try to explain as best as possible what affects hair growth to where it may be easier to understand, so if I fall short, don't judge me, lol..kidding!


     In order of what affects hair growth from the least to the most effective are:

(1)  GENETICS: determines our hair growth cycles and hair loss cycles, such as balding patterns.

(2) HORMONES: Birth control and events such as pregnancy

Because any of the nutrients we get from food are FIRST utilized by our bodies, our hair and nails receive any left over proteins, vitamins, water and nutrients after the body has used them. So, if our diets are already poor and our water intake is not so great, any possible vitamins, minerals and nutrients from the food eaten are distributed within our bodies and if none are left for our hair and nails, this affects how the hair and nails grow. So, this is why it is stressed to try as much as possible to feed our bodies great healthy foods and have great water intake.

 (4) EXERCISE: Extremely important factor that is many times overlooked in terms of healthy hair growth. Exercise promotes oxygen flow. It also releases endorphins (neurotransmitters , which are chemicals that pass signals along one neuron to the next). They are the pain blockers and are responsible for our feelings of pleasure. Which is why when we exercise or have a great workout, we feel great, pleasurable (they are also released during sex, as it serves as a form of exercise in a sense as well). And, exercise regulates the adrenal glands which are responsible for your body's relation to stress.

5) STRESS: The top dog. Did you know that a stressful event can cause the hair to go into a 'resting phase' known as the TELOGEN PHASE (the resting phase of the hair..this is where our hair sheds and falls out). Now, normal hair shedding is between 75-100 hairs per day, however, excessive shedding can be created by a few things. Now, let me go a little deeper. On average, about 85%-95% of the hairs on our heads are in the growing phase (ANAGEN PHASE), and the others are resting (TELOGEN PHASE). The hair is normally in the Anagen or growing phase for 2-4 years then it enters the resting or Telogen phase for about 2-4 months, then it falls out and is replaced by a new growing hair. Now, when a stressful event occurs, the hair will enter what is called TELOGEN EFFLUVIUM. This is where some body change or shock pushes MORE hairs into the Telogen (resting phase). So when a person is struggling with Telogen Effluvium, they may lose 300 hairs vs 100 hairs per day. Here is a list of things that can trigger Telogen Effluvium:

(1) Sugery
(2) Major physical trauma
(3) Major psychological stress
(4) High fever, severe infection or other illness
(5) Extreme weight loss
(6) Extreme change in diet
(7) Abrubt hormonal changes, such as childbirth or menopause
(8) Iron defenciency
(9) Hyperthyroidism
(10) Some medications
(11) Poor diet (in some cases)

Now, keep in mind, because the hair rests for 2-4 months, you may not experience the excessive shedding until a few months later, so that will cause you to back track and think about what major stressful event may be the cause..For example, if in February, I begin to experience excessive shedding, I would think back to the surgery (c-section) that I had in October as the potential cause of my excessive shedding. The great news is that normally, no one can tell that your hair is experiencing this excessive shedding but you and the Telogen Effluvium usually runs its course within 6-9 months. (note: see your doc if you begin to experience bald patches or more extreme hair loss, this could be something different).

A few other things that can affect Hair Growth are:

(A) STYLING TECHNIQUES: combs, brushes, use of heat, harsh chemical use (relaxers, color, texturizers)


(C) SCALP ISSUES: These are created by numerous things and because our scalp is sensitive, it is imperative that we do things to make sure that it functions properly. Try not to use nails or objects such as combs to scratch the scalp. These make tiny microscopic slits on the scalp and forces the scalp to go into a 'repair mode' which can make it malfunction. And because our scalp produces normal sebum (oil) it's usually not necessary to add additional oils to the scalp, which creates clogged pores in the scalp and over time will cause the scalp to malfunction.

(D) WASHING: Many harsh ingredients (sulfates in particular) strip the scalp of it's natural sebum causing some to assume the scalp is dry, which in turn makes us want to 'grease/oil' the scalp, again, potentially creating scalp malfunction which leads to other scalp issues. Our hair's pH range is between 4.5-5.5, so it's best to try to utilize products that fall into that range. Now, cleansers are usually formulated at higher pH, however, this is where a conditioner plays a major part because they are usually formulated at lower pH levels to help close the cuticle , soften and temporarily repair the hair. ACV (Apple Cider Vinegar) rinses are great for aiding in scalp issues and for protecting the hair and scalp from harmful contaminants and it helps protect the hair by closing the cuticle preventing further damage to the hair. So, yes, ingredients do matter. For more information on potentially harsh/harmful ingredients, check out this post for 10 things to avoid putting on your hair: click here

Hope this helps..Happy Natty Day!