Regimen Shegimen – A Work in Progress

So I thought I had a regimen down for my hair. Not so much.

After I posted my Team Natural post I got some comments from the girls over in the Naturally Curly Crafter girls on Ravelry about the ingredients in my conditioner. I was already not a fan of some the ingredients, but the –cone content caught the eye of some and I was informed that they are no good for the curly girl (they coat the hair and are almost impossible to wash out with anything other than shampoos that contain SLS – which I don’t use). I also felt that I needed a thicker and creamier conditioner anyway and a curly girl friendly clarifying shampoo. So, after much youtube surfing, internet googling, actual brick and mortar shopping, some experimenting and the tossing of some noncurly girl friendly products, here’s my new product list:

  • Suave Naturals Tropical Coconut Conditioner
  • SheaMoisiture’s Organic Raw Shea Butter Conditioner
  • SheaMoisiture’s Organic Raw Shea Butter Shampoo
  • Kimmaytube’s Leave-in Conditioner potion
  • Kinky Curly Knot Today Leave-in Conditioner
  • Now Food’s Shea Butter

Shampooing – I’m still using the Suave Naturals Tropical Coconut Conditioner as my co-poo. It’s so awesome. It cleans, softens and, as I found out the other night, provides more than enough slip for a serious detangling session. I add the SheaMoisture’s Organic Raw Shea Butter Shampoo to the mix if I feel like there is serious build-up going on. Will it be my clarifying shampoo? Don’t know….maybe if I add a little squirt of Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap. I’ve done that with awesome results, I just worry because the ph balance is super high for the Dr. Bronner’s. Will research…

Conditioning – I love the SheaMoisture’s Organic Raw Shea Butter Conditioner! Love. Leaves my hair super soft and fabulous with no -cones! I’m running thru this stuff because I use a lot of product when I condition to make sure that every strand is coated. Its only $10 a pop so it’s not so bad if the results are consistent (I’ve paid much more for inferior results – sorry Bumble and bumble, so not worth the money!).

Leave-in Conditioner and Sealant – I’ve tried a number of leave-ins in my time and I have to say that I’m pretty in love with the Kimmaytube leave-in conditioner. It’s a good balance of moisture and oils and its super easy to make and store (in the fridge to extend shelf life). Love the aloe vera juice component – so healthy! I’ve tried a number of oils as a sealant but I wasn’t sold on anything until I tried the straight shea butter. It makes my hair really soft without making it oily (even though I put a ton of it on my hair in one section on accident – I so wasn’t paying attention!).

I’ve been transitioning for just under 3 months now and the one thing I’ve noticed about my hair is that it doesn’t like a lot of product. I never used a ton of products on my relaxed hair but I was always putting a little bit of this and a little bit of that in my hair. I’m noticing now that my hair likes it simple. Figures. Doesn’t my hair know that I’m a product junkie!!!

Ahhhh, such a work in progress…my regimen and my hair (hell, me in general)!

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Team Natural

So on June 3rd I decided no more relaxer on the hair. My scalp (and pocketbook) can take it no more!!! I went to the salon on my birthday, and for the first time in years, I got my hair pressed.

I have to admit that I already don’t miss getting my hair relaxed. Who in their right mind misses burning relaxer cream, stinky neutralizer shampoo, a scabby scalp and limp hair? Anyway, mama wants a twist-out!!!

So after a number of tests of some new products, new equipment and some unconventional techniques, I’ve finally got a pretty good system going on here.

Products first:

  • Shampoo: Suave Tropical Coconut Conditioner
    Yes, that says conditioner, not shampoo. I have found that the natural divas on youtube, CurlyNikki and all of the other sites that talk about being a curly girl have all figured out that most shampoos are pretty harsh and strip you hair of everything – good and bad. Most conditioners have some sort of cleaning agent in them but they tend to be way less harsh than the standard soap/lathering ingredients in shampoos. Surprisingly enough though, conditioner will so get the cleaning job done like a champ. Seriously, I totally over used some products the last time I did my hair (like WAY overused) and had massive oily hair this morning. Did a cowash (conditioner wash) and it totally got rid of all the stuff I overdid it with but left my hair soft and moisturized. (I will probably do a cleansing shampoo once a month or so (not sure what product though) but I’ve always had to do that. Even when I used normal/harsh shampoos in the past. That’s just how my hair is.)
    I highly recommend this type of shampoo process and this particular conditioner. I know, it seems strange – especially using freakin’ Suave Tropical Conditioner – but it rocks and is a curly girl favorite (Black and White curly girls alike). Give it a try. Your hair will feel great! Your pocketbook/wallet will heart you big time too – I got the family size bottle from Walmart for $2 and change and my bff got the regular size bottle for 89 cents (she went all out and bought two bottles – she’s a baller like that!)
  • Conditioner: Joico Silk Results Smoothing Conditioner
    I was trying to mix my own conditioners up, using stuff like Carol’s Daughter and then mixing other stuff into it but it just didn’t quite cut it. Don’t get me wrong, all of this stuff left my hair soft, but it also left it very oil (plus I’m heavy handed with product which sooo doesn’t help the problem!). And to be honest, my hair just likes the Joico. It leaves my hair soft, moisturized and unbelievably easy to comb out. I know it’s so not a natural product but it works wonders on my hair so I’m stickin’ with it.
  • Leave-in Conditioner: KimMayTube from Youtube’s leave-in conditioner recipe
    Here’s the basic recipe:
    2 tablespoons of your conditioner of choice (silicone free!)
    2 tablespoons of Whole Leaf Aloe Vera Juice
    2 teaspoons of Castor Oil
    2 teaspoons of Jojoba Oil
    ***Shake Well!***
    I used the Kinky-Curly Knot Today Leave-In Conditioner/Detangler and Lily of the Valley Aloe Vera Juice. I used the jojoba oil because I already have some at home (I added some rosemary oil to it to give it additional hair healthy ump!). I didn’t, however, use the castor oil. I have a bottle of Carol’s Daughter’s Lisa’s Hair Elixir Oil and I used that instead. It just seemed like a good choice. Not only did I already have this at home, but it already has tons of good stuff in it – sweet almond oil, sage oil, olive oil and all sorts of other healthy oils. I figured this way I would get the benefit of a number or healthy oils instead of just a couple.

Supply list:

  • Wide tooth comb and a medium tooth
    comb – No small tooth comb on this head of hair!
  • Tangle Teeser – This comb/brush looks like it’s not going to do a damn thing to your tangled hair but it detangles with minimal breakage better than any comb or brush I’ve ever used – even my kinky natural roots. It’s a fairly new product out of England and it rocks. It doesn’t hurt that you can buy it at Sally’s Beauty Supply or off of Amazon for a whole 10 bucks. Beware – the original version is very pink! So very pink. I bought the purple glittery one – the pink one was just tooooo much!
  • Conair Ion Blow Drier – Nothing exciting here. Just a normal blow drier that cost me $20 at Walmart when my old drier blew out nothing but cold air.
  • BaByliss Flatiron Steam Straightener – I’ll say it, steam flatirons are the bomb. I would have never imagined that a steam flatiron would do anything other than make my hair extra nappy. So not the case. It straightens amazing well and leaves your hair soft and silky. It also helps keep the hair straight longer too. I’ve been wanting one for a while but didn’t particularly care for the $200 price tag that originally hung from them. I went on Amazon recently and found one for $149 on sale for $49. Word. Yeah freakin’ Amazon. Love this thing!

The Process:

  1. Wash my hair with the Suave Tropical Coconut Conditioner two times
  2. Liberally apply the Joico Silk Results Conditioner, comb out the tangles with wide tooth comb or Tangle Teeser, cover with plastic conditioning cap and a big towel and let it sit for about 15 minutes (knitting time!)
  3. Rinse well and gently wring out excess water
  4. Apply the KimMayTube leave in conditioner (about a teaspoon – give or take)
  5. Blow dry
  6. Flat iron

Right now, this process is totally working for me. I just finished my hair and it looks and feels great. I’m super pleased.

And seriously, thank goodness for the internet. I found out about a number of products and supplies from some of the natural divas’ websites and youtube videos.

What the hell did we do before youtube. Crazy!