3 Lazy Length Retention Hacks

The struggle of wanting your hair to grow and not wanting to do anything to it continues...

Confession: I am obsessed with my hair and how it's growing. Another confession: I hate actually having to do anything to my hair. It's a strange tug of war where I basically want to do the least and get the most in return. This probably says a lot about me as a person but that's not what we're talking about right now. After 5 years of experimenting with my natural hair, cutting it and watching it grow and cutting it again, I have discovered a few tips, tricks, and hacks to growing your hair out and keeping your length.

1. Low Manipulation | Let's be honest here: protective styling can be a pain in the ass. No one likes to sit in a chair for 8 hours while your edges are being abused for 6 weeks of box braids and a sore scalp. Of course they look cute but is it worth the trouble? I find that low manipulations styles are just as great for retaining your length as long term protective styles. Try styles like mini twists, twisted updos, or simple buns to keep your ends protected (and your hands out of your hair) without the hassle of a complicated protective style.

2. Keep Your Hair Stretched | As a super kinky, coily haired gal this tip is key for me. Shrunken hair equals single strand knots and tangles and those equal extreme breakage. Ain't nobody got time for that so I make sure to keep my hair stretched as much as possible. I style on stretched hair, I keep my hair twisted (stretched while washing), and when I'm not out and about you can bet my hair is in some twists. This prevents unnecessary damage and fooling with my hair.

3. Wrap it Up | Listen, I'm not trying to be all up in your business here but you need to protect your hair while you sleep. I'm not even saying you have to re twist it; a satin pillowcase or scarf will do. Cotton rubbing up against your strands can cause dryness and breakage and leaving you hair out can cause extreme knotting and tangling. Save yourself from crazy split ends and just wear a scarf.

 

Super easy right? Like I said before, we're trying to do the least here and doing these three things can save your hair.

How do you retain your natural hair length? sound off below!

Holy Grail Status | Especially Hair Moisture Foundation Masque

If there's one thing I love, it's a GOOD deep conditioner.

I could talk about deep conditioners all damn day. Literally. My favorite deep conditioners, DIY Deep Conditioners, the worst deep conditioners... All damn day. I'm like the Bubba Gump of deep conditioners. That being said I have found a product that I am absolutely in LOVE with. 

This stuff has changed my life. Okay, maybe not my life. Maybe just my hair.

This stuff has changed my life. Okay, maybe not my life. Maybe just my hair.

A representative from Especially Hair reached out to me and after checking out the website I was halfway sold on the product (I'm a sucker for a good web design, product marketing, and good packaging). First of all, let's talk about how this is black owned company. That alone gives me life. The product line was inspired by a young woman's need for hair care products to use after swimming. You all know the struggle of post- swim hair and preventing dryness and chlorine damage can be difficult.

While I haven't been doing much swimming this year I have been trying to combat dryness with every wash day. When I finally tried the Especially Hair Moisture Foundation Deep Conditioner I was in desperate need of an intensive conditioning treatment. Looking at the ingredients of this product automatically made me happy: the first five ingredients encourage the highest level of moisture and health for your dry or damaged hair. Glycerin and water are holy grail moisturizers and glycerin encourages ongoing moisture. The jojoba oil encourages a healthy scalp and hair growth as it mimics the sebum that our bodies naturally produce  and the avocado oil leaves your hair extra soft and touchable. Lastly we have the natural hair superstar: apple cider vinegar which revived my curls almost immediately and left them soft and bouncy. Are you in love yet?

The texture of this product is a little different from what you would expect in a deep conditioner: It's not super creamy or heavy. In fact quite the opposite, the Moisture Foundation Masque is light and and slippery. This makes detangling an absolute breeze and the product doesn't sit on top of your hair and weigh it down after it's been rinsed out. After using the Moisture Foundation I didn't need to use a regular conditioner and my hair was soft and light. I especially loved that this didn't leave and product residue and my hair still felt CLEAN after using it.

My only con I have about this product is the price. At thirty two dollars it is quite expensive when compared to other deep treatments. That being said, I plan on buying this product and the Enhance Daily Conditioner by Especially Hair very soon.

Pink, White, and Blue

How else to celebrate Independence Day than to rebel a little?

Suddenly, I'm into pink.

Suddenly, I'm into pink.

...and I'm not quite sure why.

...and I'm not quite sure why.

I was never a "pink girl". I was the roll around in the mud, play outside all day, never to be seen in a dress girl until around age 14. So now, entering my late twenties I find myself obsessed with all shades of pink and wanting to wear it all the time. It's an unhealthy obsession, it really is. And I'm loving every minute of it.

Happy Fourth!

Joelle

Black Owned Business Spotlight | Caribbean Secrets Curly Creme Conditioner

Because we should not only celebrate, but also patronize, black owned businesses.

I always marvel at young black entrepreneurs: the sheer determination it takes to start your own business simply astounds me. Furthermore, as an aspiring entrepreneur who also happens to be black, one can face a multitude of obstacles. Which is why I was absolutely delighted when I was contacted by Pierre of Caribbean Secrets to try out their Curly Creme Conditioner.

Caribbean Secrets was started by Calvin (also known as Pierre) about three years ago while attending Howard University. Calvin saw that so many young black men and women were skin and hair obsessed and saw the need for an awesome product that we could use to care for hair and skin needs.

The Caribbean Secrets Curly Creme Conditioner was created specifically for natural hair and I have to say it is amazing. The first impression that I had was the wonderful but not over powering smell. You guys know that I'm not a fan of strong or artificial scents and this product has neither of those attributes. The texture of the conditioner is thick and creamy which my hair immediately soaked up. I used this product as a co washing product and a regular conditioner after shampooing and in each capacity my hair loved it. Because of the creamy texture of this product I thought that it would cause extreme build up and greasiness but it did not. After using it as my co wash several times my hair was soft and light and did not have a bunch of gunk coming out of it after my shampoo the next. I thoroughly enjoy using this product and it comes highly recommended on my list. My only con is that the product does not have a ton of slip which I like for my conditioners to have so I can detangle.

To purchase this product check them out on amazon!

Ingredients:

Water

Raw Whole Flaxseed

Organic Coconut Oil

Shea Butter

Avocado Butter

Olive Oil 

Cranberry Seed Oil

Haitian Castor Oil

Organic Coconut Milk

Coconut Cream

Emulsifying Wax

DL-Pathenol (Provitamin B5)

Potassium Sorbate

Fragrance

 

Memorial Day Slay Part Two | Day Party

I have to admit I'm a bit of a traditionalist when it comes to clothing; except for a short period of time in college when I was known for wearing tops as dresses (don't judge) I generally wear clothing as it was intended to be worn. But as always there comes a time and a place to break the rules. I originally bought all of these pieces last summer and wore them completely differently (see here and here) but I was inspired to step outside of the proverbial box and switch up my style for the day. The top is actually a VERY body conscious dress and the skirt came as part of a coordinate set that I never actually wore together. Hair provided by B&HF Extensions. In all honestly I love this combo more than the original styling. 

What's everyone wearing/doing on this extended weekend?

 

Product Rundown and Review | B&HF Extensions Hair Crush Products

All products were sent to me for use and review however, this is not a sponsored post. All opinions are my own.

A complete rundown of all the awesome products by B&HF Extensions.

A complete rundown of all the awesome products by B&HF Extensions.

As you guys have probably noticed my hairstyle has been very different as of late. If you follow me on YouTube or Instagram then you probably saw that I have been working with a pretty dope company called B&HF Extensions. B&HF Extensions is a small black owned business based in Georgia that exclusively supplies Premium Peruvian Hair. I have done several reviews and tutorials of their hair on my channel but today I want to showcase their awesome hair care products.

B&HF Extensions has a full line of hair care products that are great for your own hair AND your hair extensions. 

First and foremost I have to say that all of these products are salon quality. You will not find anything similar at the drugstore or Target for a similar price. The line ranges from your shampoo and conditioner (as well as a co wash) to heat protectant and a life giving shine serum. Everything smells amazing but the scent is not over powering and when using the products all together you will not smell like you dumped a bottle of perfume on yourself. The shampoo, co wash, and leave in conditioner have worked wonders on my natural hair and I have found myself rationing the product to hold on to it for a little while longer.

The products that I have been using mainly for my hair extensions are the Blowing Kisses Heat Activated Thermal Protect Spray, Kandy Kisses Spray Laminate, Silk Nectar Shine Serum. These products have kept all of my units looking fresh and helped protect the color that I applied.

My favorite products from the line are the leave in conditioner (which says quite a bit seeing as I normally don't like spray leave in conditioners), the Incredible Moisturizing Shampoo,  and the shine serum. That being said, all of the products are simply amazing and come highly recommended by mw. If you would like to purchase the products check out the B&HF Hair Extensions site here.

Let me know if you guys are interested in trying these products!

Joelle

Memorial Day Slay Part One

Who's cooking out this weekend and can a girl get an invite?

A fun mix of colors and prints to kick off the unofficial beginning of summer.

A fun mix of colors and prints to kick off the unofficial beginning of summer.

Being an Upstate New Yorker I wait for a glimpse of warmth from about October to May (and by warmth, I mean 60 degrees, the bar is set pretty low around here). The weather this year was particularly odd since we didn't get a real Spring and went straight from sweater weather to almost 90 degrees. 

Memorial Day being the unofficial beginning of summer I figured it would be fun to go with s super short short and long jacket to balance out all the skin. And of course, since it's summer time, I figured it was appropriate to mix different colors and prints.

Outfit Details

(everything is old so no links)

Jacket and Shorts | Marshall's Crop Top | Misguided Shoes | Asos Hair | B&HF Extensions

What are you all doing for Memorial Day weekend?

Joelle

The Girl With The Glasses

Getting real nerdy today.

In honor of May 4th I decided to break out the glasses and show you guys my inner "nerd". I had frames way before they were trendy. A result of my constant reading in the dark while I was supposed to be sleep, I was never ashamed of having four eyes. As a matter of fact, I was so excited to get my first pair of glasses and even for my braces that I practically begged my dad to take me the eye doctor.  Such a weird child I was. See what I did there?

Kisses,

 

Joelle

How To: Go Blonde Like a Pro

Going blonde is simple; all you need is time, patience, and a ton of product.

How to go blonde, step by step

How to go blonde, step by step

First and foremost, I will say that I do not suggest doing this on your own hair. The hair that I lifted and colored is from B&HF Extensions. I lifted and colored three bundles and one closure of their Premium Peruvian Loose Wave Hair prior to installing the hair to create a wig. The entire process took me about 8 hours which was spread out over several days. I would suggest doing this over several days so as not to over stress the hair.

In order to complete this look you will need the large bucket (yes I said bucket) of BW2 Pure White Lightening Powder, 20 and 30 Volume Developer (I used the Clairol Flare 20 Volume and a generic 30 Volume from my local beauty supply store), and hair color to be used after you lift the hair to tone down the brass (Loreal Preference 8 1/2 A and 9 A and Loreal Feria Absolute Platinum). You will also need a mixing bowl, a baby whisk (I'm pretty sure that's not the technical name but this is my blog and I do what I want), a color brush, hair foils, and something to protect your tables/ floors like some old news paper or plastic bags.

To start this process off I mixed three scoops of the BW2 lightening powder with about three and a half scoops of the 30 volume developer and mixed it together with my baby whisk. The cream should have the smooth consistency of pancake batter.

Quick Tip: Wear long sleeves and pants so as not to irritate your skin like I did and be sure to wear clothes that you don't really care about like I didn't. Basically do as I say and not as I do.

I started with the bundle that I wanted to be the darkest which would be on the bottom layer of my hair. I applied my mixture to the hair starting from the ends working my way up to the weft so as not to create an uneven color. After I was finished applying the product to the entire bundle I wrapped the hair in foil (not kitchen foil, go ahead and spend the coins at the Beauty Supply for actual hair foil) and let it process for 10 minutes. The result should be a very pretty and rich dark brown color.You will now need to rinse, shampoo, and condition the hair.  At this point you can blow dry the hair or let it air dry in preparation of the second process. for the second process I wanted to create some highlights and an ombre effect. Why? Because I'm extra. Y'all know this. I mixed together my lightening powder with a twenty volume developer this time and pulled aside some small and random pieces where I wanted the hair to be highlighted. After applying the product on my highlights I brushed the creme about halfway up the remainder of the bundle to create an ombre look. I let this hair process for about twenty minutes before rinsing, shampooing and conditioning.

Quick tip: To create a natural looking ombre as opposed to a straight across line you can either slightly tease the hair or apply the product in upward strokes.

After washing and conditioning the bundle I used a deep treatment by Doo Gro to revive the hair.

I repeated this process on the remaining bundles but I let the hair process for about 30 minutes for the first process and I used 30 volume developer when lifting for the highlights and ombre. This made the bundles much lighter than the first one which was what I was going for.

In order to remove any brassy tones from lifting the hair, it's necessary to tone OR deposit a color on top of the hair. I chose to put a color as toning needs to be retouched more often the color. For the darker bundle I used the Loreal Preference 8 1/2 A and left it on for about 40 minutes. For the lighter bundles and closure I used Loreal Feria Absolute Platinum which I placed on the ends and applied to certain strands to get MORE highlights (again, I'm extra). On the remainder of the hair I used the Loreal Preference 9A. This created gorgeous highlights and an amazing ombre as well as a beautiful overall color. Using the three bundles and a closure I created a wig unit.

As I said the entire process took be about 8 hours over a period of four days. It is extremely time consuming but well worth it in my opinion. The hair from BHF Extensions lifted AND colored beautifully and I'm extremely happy with the results.

I hope this was helpful for you guys!

Kisses,

Joelle