Natural Hair: Slicking It Back

I like this look. It’s easy to maintain and great for hair of all lengths and types. Although I can’t pull a brush through my hair like that. πŸ™‚

I’m a subscriber to MsVCharles’s YouTube channel, because of her demeanor and attitude: very cheerful.

BTW, Peace and Blessings on this Good Friday. πŸ˜€

Share

Happy Holidays: Hair Again – The Vanity Check

It’s been two years – I think – since I did a length check. It’s been a long time since I flat ironed my hair. I used a low temperature.

This will be my last length check, and putting up of online photos, since I am finally satisfied with my hair. It has never been this long before. Ever. I was a bald headed kid, and thinking back I’m glad I didn’t have much hair.

Oh, and Happy Holidays.

I usually don’t announce my hiatus, but I’ll be out of it for a couple of weeks. I have some books I need to finish (write, edit, polish, etc) up.

I may or may not respond to comments. Those who have access will be free to chat among yourselves.

Take care everybody. πŸ˜€

Share

Hair: travel style, observations, and conditioner concoction

Returning to Normalcy (Yawn) and Travel Observations

In September, I was away for nearly three (3) weeks, and honestly, it was a downer to return. I never used to feel that way. I used to be so happy to be back in America it wasn’t funny. This was the first time I realized I could have stayed away indefinitely.

I could leave tomorrow, and not look back.

These feelings are not helped by how spoiled I was by my German friend. Talk about a man looking after you! I was truly taken care of. He’s so wonderful, my sweetheart is. And look-out! German men got some incredible legs on them!

What a delight that trip was; I’m truly sorry it had to end!

Listen up! It is not like the grass was greener in the places I went. I simply liked the way people around me behaved. Black women who travel overseas might know what I mean. I would never assume everywhere would be as satisfying as where I went.

The thought that occurred to me on my travels was: why didn’t I come here sooner?

Travel Hair Style

My bed time hair style. I often switch-up.
Ponytails give me a headache.
Looks like yarn, but it’s all mine.

I had blow dried my hair, my Mom parted it for me, before I put it into two-strand twists. I wore this style for three weeks without washing my hair. Eww, I know. I couldn’t risk a head cold, not on an airplane ride back! I’ve had that experience before, and never wanted to repeat it. I thought it was going to be difficult to deal with, but I’d simply wet ‘n wipe, and re-twist my hair after saturating it with my conditioner concoction (see below).

My Mom continues to ask me how people reacted to my hair. (Picture me with my eyebrows raised.) She knows how I am. If I loved Afros on me, and I don’t because of hair knotting, I would have rocked that style daily. My reaction is usually: I could give a rat’s behind what anyone thought. I don’t care what anyone thinks in America; I certainly did not in Europe. I could not care less, and apparently no one else did either.

She thought it looked good. I guess she wondered if anyone was going to compliment me. I was thankful that they liked to mind their own business. I could eat in any restaurant, and not get the stink-eye. The staff was almost always courteous, polite, and nice. I know I do get that here in the USA. Yet, if folks there are watching you eat, they certainly aren’t as obvious as the morons here.

My Mom once said, “Why are they in my mouth watching me take every bite?” Sigh. We’re not even talking high-end: this is in places like Chili’s.

My Hair Concoctions

I love mixing stuff together now. I still can’t wear straight conditioner in my hair, and why would I want to? But the options I gain from mixing is nice. I feel I get an extra ump out of doing this.

I mix Africa’s Best Herbal Oil (with lots of good stuff) with White Rain Conditioner (Coconut). It not only smells good, but leaves my hair feeling really nice. I also used my pure / raw Shea Butter + Aloe Vera + Vitamin E + Castor Oil + Lavender + Ylang Ylang mixture. Both concoctions put moisture into my hair and doesn’t shrink it significantly.

Share

Rapunzalima, Rapunzalima Let Down Your Weave

Went out to a mall a few miles away with my Mother. It’s always a challenge when I go out to eat. At this particular chain (TGI Fridays), they provide no information on their website as to how many calories their food has. It was the only eatery I could find on my GPS, otherwise I would have gone somewhere else.

However, their Vanilla Bean Cheesecake is deadly. It has to be about 600-870 plus calories. It tasted sooooooo damn good. I wont be eating something like that again until next year. It’s that dangerous.

After roaming the parking lot for an inordinate amount of time, we finally find a decent spot. We head inside the “restaurant”. I’m very fussy about where I sit. The seater / host / whatever they’re called asks if we want to sit in a booth next to this couple.

Welcome to the Jungle

I just don’t like sitting close to anyone. I mean, half the restaurant was empty, why sit up under anybody?

So, I said, “No, I like being near the window.” For me, that was that.

We walk past the couple. I hear someone snort? laugh? grunt? in disdain. Okay.

After we’re seated, I glance briefly at the source of the snuffling and huffling out of curiosity.

It’s a Shaniqua* with her “man” (I suppose) L’Trellmont.* She’s totally on the hostility tip. Glaring and staring.

Alrighty, then! Last time I can recall such animosity was over a decade ago. I decide not to look at her again: no point in feeding the animal.

I head off to the ladies room to wash my hands. Can I say, I hate dirty, stinking restrooms? Wow. That place was nasty. Never again!

Upon returning to my seat, I start playing with my shoulder-length twists. I’m shaking, and flipping, my hair off of my face. I’m twirling them. Oh, yeah. Just having fun. Can’t keep my hands out of my hair.

A little while later, I overhear the Shaniqua bark, “Bitch.” Oh wow, it’s that serious is it?

Rapunzalima, Rapunzalima Let Down Your Weave

Finally, they are leaving. Oh wait, she’s leaving.

I finally get a good look at the back of her. She’s not very tall (no offense to the vertically challenged among us). She’s got a very, very long weave styled to look like it belongs on the Disney character Princess Jasmine. Even the blouse looked similar.


Yet, L’Tremont is still at the table long after she’s walked – pardon – sashayed out the door. Did the child even know he wasn’t watching her? He’s staring at me. I raise my eyebrows. He continues to stare. It’s that kind of look.

Folks are so weird these days. Seriously? She thinks I would want him? Did he think I’m interested?

What in the world?

I turn back to my Mom, and tell her about the little non-interaction with these people. She’s surprised.

I shrug, and laugh. Maybe if little girl wasn’t huffing and puffing so much her guy wouldn’t have noticed me. She should have realized – if you want to keep his eyes on you, and the waist length weave, do not bring his attention to another woman with natural hair that you perceive as long.

All that drama. And for what?

I really was complimented by the silly. I didn’t realize I was worthy of so much attention. I’m almost old enough to be the little girl’s Momma, but that never stops the stupidity, does it?

* I don’t know these people’s names. I just made them up. But there is something shared, in looks and behavior, by the people who’ve shown me hostility in the past. So, don’t be offended if this is your actual name(s).

Share

Hair: Length Check and Bantu Knots

Note: My hair type is 4a-z, nappy, kinky, coily, cottony, soft, fine, moderately thick, and very very delicate.

Time to check the hair length again!

It grows so slow now-a-days. I’m still trying to figure out where that growth spurt a couple of years ago was due to.

I had to cut off 1/2 an inch to 1 inch on the ends, because I was getting irritated with knotting. I have to stay away from small two-strand twists; they are the cause of a lot of single strand knots for me.

This summer, I am doing the following for health and hair:

  • Eating a lot of fish, I’ve been consuming a lot of Japanese food too. I know not to eat too much, because of mercury concerns (among other pollutants / poisons).
  • The weather has been too cool for my stomach, but I hope I can start making my morning drinks again with carrots, bananas, yogurt, and flax seeds. Right now, all I eat is a banana for breakfast.
  • Taking vitamins roughly every other day. I’ve included a separate supplement of D3 and powdered C.
  • Working out (longer / harder). I’m working up to jogging longer than 10 minutes at a time; this is in addition to my walking and weight lifting.
  • Co-washing, which is washing with conditioners. Sometimes, I’ll shampoo.
  • No more flat ironing, although I itch, and ache, to every time I wash! I blow dry on a reasonable and comfortable heat setting. I always use a heat protectant!
  • I like to keep my hair completely covered under a scarf and /or in a protective style. If I do wear my hair “out”, I style it to look less than shoulder length.


I suppose if I flat iron, it would appear longer.

My standard routine, the changes are always minute:

  1. Saturate hair with White Rain Conditioner Coconut. I couldn’t resist buying it from the dollar store. I love this stuff cheap.
  2. Part hair into 4 sections – just the hands, no comb! – braid the root, and twist to the ends.
  3. Apply castor oil to ends of hair, around the hairline (edges), and the crown where I always part the hair, which is prone to dryness and breakage.
  4. Put on plastic cap, cover with scarf. Sleep on it, overnight.
  5. Exercise.
  6. Wash hair. Open each section at a time, wash scalp thoroughly, comb gently with fingers, re-braid and re-twist.
  7. Wrap tightly with a towel. No rubbing.
  8. Open each section at a time, apply heat protectant, make smaller sections, and blow dry hair.
  9. Bantu knot each section.
  10. Done.

I tried to do a silk wrap (sitting under the dryer with a plastic wrap around smoothed hair), but my hair laughed at my efforts.

I think it will be next year, before I do this again.

Share

Hair Paranoia: Oprah Winfrey and the Rest of Us

The above image I “stole” from the Huffington Post. I don’t know who the photographer is. Sorry.

Wow! Imagine one of the only topic a twit(s) on Twitter could think of was to tell Oprah that her weave looks nice. She promptly had to tell the entire world that the so-called-weave was actually her own hair. Her hair is awesome. I nod my head in respect, and wonder: why do we seek to tame our hair when it doesn’t need it?

These are the times we live in. Everyone (okay, for the few that are thinking about it) believes black women, for the most part are bald, or close to it. If we happen to have a substantial amount of hair (take your pick: past the shoulder and thick, or between shoulder blades and blunt cut), then the hair on our heads actually belongs to someone else. It was not something due to nature, nurture or genes.

I’m not surprised that a woman, who is a billionaire, would have (a lot of) hair on her head. It makes sense to me. She can afford to have every single strand looked after. If she was bald, it would, in my opinion, have to be due to disease, or incompetence. I don’t ascribe a lack of hair on some black women due to being black. I know in my own past I simply did not have a clue of how to take care of it. Trial and error can take a lifetime.

I have to admit that for a natural hair Nazi (said tongue in cheek), aside from a quick glance at a person’s head, I don’t think or care whether the hair is real, weave, wig, glued in, relaxed, not relaxed, permed – you name it. People, especially these days, are preoccupied with other concerns, and they on average, wear horrible hairstyles. Most people, I suspect, simply don’t care either.

There are, however, exceptions.

My Hair Paranoia

I am afraid to wear my hair loose, blown out, or flat ironed in public. In the past, black women have come up to me to touch my hair and offer commentary on it. As a black person interacting with other blacks, I’ve always felt that we have the truly unfortunate habit of being too familiar with one another.

Never would I look at someone and speak loudly about their hair, clothes, complexion, weight, or appearance. Yet, this is something that black people love to do. It’s extremely rude, vulgar, low class, disgusting behavior, yet too many are proud of it.

The worse is, not only the loud, and public commentary, but this belief that they can touch at will as well.

Even on days where I think I wont see anyone (black) if I am wearing my hair out, I feel as though all-eyes-are-on-me. I wish it were my imagination. People think you don’t know that they are staring. I used to wake people up from a nap on the trains of NYC just from staring. Trust, eyes have weight.

I admit it: I’m hair paranoid. Rarely do I wear my hair out. The few times I have, there’s this niggling feeling that each and every time I do it, there’s going to be some loud mouthed, overbearing, heavy staring black woman waiting to persecute me. In order to fight this, I’ll have to wear my hair out more often, until the paranoia fades, as well as invest in a fantastic new iPod, and taser. Just kidding about the iPod.

For Example @ The Baltimore Natural Hair Expo

Props to the Organic Root Stimulator folks! Great products from nice and professional people.

I wear my hair braided at the root, with the rest twisted. I twist while it’s damp to moderately wet. I load it with product; I’m very heavy handed. For the time being (my mini personal challenge), I’m not blow drying, or using the flat iron. I sit under my dryer to finish. This results in nice tight, shrunken twists. I also wear a scarf to cover nearly half my head to pull the hair back and off of my shoulders.

So, one of the first things a vendor, who was supposedly selling a product, couldn’t wait to tell me was my hair is short, and that she relaxes her hair! Oh wow! Does that stuff seep into the brain? Does it lower the IQ? I wonder. Mind you now, this product only covers the hair, that’s it. The little, itty, bitty, vendor even went so far as to show me her long, long, long micros! And her scalp! It was as though I was supposed to be impressed with long, long, long, fake hair!

Have we not truly become a crazy group of people?

It’s just hair, and generally speaking, folks need to please keep their stupid, ignorant, and uniformed comments to themselves.

If, and when, I form my black female rap/rock group – we must call ourselves The Insane Hair Posse.

Share

There’s Not Enough Money To Make Me Do It

People shaving all their hair off to make money.

No way, not for me. I have a big head (plenty of room for advertising), but I like having hair on it.

This is a story from the New York Times:

Ms. Gardner, 50, […] had shaved her head for an advertising campaign by Air New Zealand, which had hired her to display a temporary tattoo. She turned around and showed them the message, written in henna on the back of her head: Need A Change? Head Down to New Zealand.

Although the amounts of money does give one pause. How much does it take to get one to do it?

In 2005, Andrew Fischer, then 20 and living in Omaha, set up an eBay auction offering his forehead as a site for a temporary tattoo advertisement for one month. Green Pharmaceuticals’ Snore- Stop won with a $37,375 bid, and Mr. Fischer appeared on national programs, including Good Morning America, and in scores of newspapers and Web sites. Soon afterward, Mr. Fischer sold his forehead a second time – to Golden Palace – but got just $5,000 and scant media attention. His forehead has remained ad-free since.

For 40 grand, I don’t regret looking like an idiot for a month, said Mr. Fischer, when reached by telephone. “But it’s not like the most fun thing in the world to walk around with a big ad on your face.”

I can imagine.

Share

Brain Dump Tuesday

Exposing the Hair

I’m looking for a weekly style in which I can wear my hair un-braided, uncovered and exposed. Perhaps a Bantu-knot twist-out, braid-out, or something. Weekly or bi-weekly flat ironing is a big no-no.

Expose my hair to the elements? Phew, I shudder at the thought. My hair doesn’t take to the air all that well. However, I want a new routine, and I like – and need to – switch styles.

Another Experiment Gone Wrong

I tried putting my hair in rollers. I used the smallest foam flexible rollers that I could find.

After washing my hair, I go sit under my bonnet dryer for an hour – low heat. Let’s just say, that it didn’t work out well. I had to resort to a brush (Oh nooooo!) to get my hair to behave.

I wont repeat the entire nightmare scenario, but I realize that I have to replace that old bonnet dryer. I get hard helmet hair from it. It is old, it has to go. It’s time to find something with that Ionic feature, which leaves my hair soft.

Next time I roll up my hair, the rollers must be fat and round, not thin. Live and learn.

Shopping in Nu Joisey

So, I spend the day with my Mom in northern New Jersey buying hair products: not chemicals, just rollers and other accessories. It’s cheaper up there. The shocker for us was how many of the stores were closed.

Oh, yeah, you know things are bad when black women aren’t buying hair products.

Something to think about: I like to look at the ingredients of a lot of products. Nearly every one of them whether for skin or hair starts has the main ingredient of petroleum or mineral oil.

Funny, how people are paying $8.99 plus for the same ingredient with different brand names.

I repeat, my staple is Castor Oil and aloe vera. If I buy a product these items, along with glycerin, must be the main ingredient.

The Health Club Gauntlet

Although I hate them, there is one very close to me that I am thinking of joining. I think I will sign up after everyone else has slacked off of their New Year’s resolution to join a club. I’ll give it about 90-120 days before the number of people dwindles to a reasonable amount.

Share

My Hair: It’s Too Black!

On Christmas Day, I flat ironed my hair. The day before I washed and deep, deep, deep conditioned it.

I’m actually sorry I didn’t take a picture (see an example below). No big deal. Next time I straighten, and / or curl my hair, I will take one. I simply enjoy the comparison shots. I don’t take a lot of pictures, because it is hard to position, and setup, myself to get a decent shot. Outside of my brother (who lives in the South), no one in my family takes a satisfactory picture.

Not my face (I wish!) but, my hair after I styled it.


I show up at my parent’s house. My Dad says, “Is that all your hair?”

I start laughing. “It looks like a wig, right?”

He mumbled, “It’s too black. Did you color it?”

Mom speaks up, “Her hair looks nice. And it is not black, her hair is lighter than that.”

I said, “I don’t know why it looks this dark. I usually see a little brownish / reddish under the lights. Maybe it’s the castor oil or heat protectant cream I put in it.”

Dad makes indecipherable noises, and again I hear. “It’s too black.”

My uncle says, “Your hair looks good. All you use is castor oil?”

“That’s mostly what I use, after all these years, that’s all I need.” I’m thankful for the eyeglasses that keep the hair off my face.

A few hours later, my hair has climbed in height, getting shorter and puffier. I’m sweating, and I’m warm (could be the booze). By then, it’s late evening, and I’m fed up with my hair. I’m not sure that’s what’s making me hot, but I want it braided.

My uncle promises to provide the name of a hair braider he knows. He lives in northern New Jersey. I’m hoping she’s someone who wont braid tight, or try to remove all the hair from my hairline (edges). I’ve already had enough experience with that. No matter how much you ask, they still braid too tight!

Mom doesn’t like my hair braiding plan, “Why must you do that?”

Frankly, I don’t want to touch my hair for about 3 to 8 weeks, maybe longer, if I don’t get an itchy, irritated scalp. “I want to rest my hair and stop the breakage between some parts.” I point out the part at the top and behind my ears. It’s not serious, but I’d like to give those areas a rest.

The moment my Mom finished plaiting my hair: the sweating stopped and I felt a chill. I had no idea the hair was making me so hot! I prefer braided hair, the long, straightened curly style, is not something I’m used to.

I will do it again, long after I get the braids done.

An exaggerated example of my hair shrinkage. Yes, and I change complexions too!
Share