DIY Natural Hair Products| Find These Ingredients in Your Kitchen

Greetings Daizies,

When I first went natural 4 years ago, it seemed like creating a regimen for my hair would cost me a grip. And as a college student, buying a shampoo and conditioner for $25 total was not always fiscally responsible (lol). So I often turned to DIY products and found that having natural hair doesn’t have to be expensive and it can even be fun to make my own products that catered to my hair needs. You might even have some of the best ingredients in your kitchen day. So I will imagine that I’m starting from a freshly grocery shopped kitchen, and make a full natural hair regimen that won’t break your bank.

Shampoo

Apple Cider Vinegar

I rave about Apple Cider Vinegar rinses for hair so much because it is absolutely amazing for cleansing the scalp. If you struggle with having a dry, itchy scalp, an ACV rinse for your hair would be very beneficial. ACV can be found in the vinegar and sugar/salt isles at most grocery stores. The most popular brand is called “Bragg” but I’ve used vinegar for Heinz and if Great Value had a vinegar brand I’d probably use that too.  Either way, all you need for this shampoo is apple cider vinegar and water.

  • Mix 1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar and 3/4 cup fo water into a cup or spray bottle
  • Apply mixture throughout hair and be sure to massage scalp
  • Leave on hair for at least 5 minutes and follow with a conditioner

Baking Soda

Baking soda I got baking soda! No but for real, I was kind of shocked too to find that the orange box of baking soda I seemingly always had could be used for my hair. Baking soda works to cleanse the scalp and revive your hair. It is effective in removing product buildup and relieving itchiness. In a scientific sense “baking soda has a high pH of 9, making it an effective acid-neutralizer and cleanse.” A very important tip I learned about baking soda through more research is that since baking soda starts with a pH of 9, it is best to use apple cider vinegar afterwards to get your hair back to it’s natural pH level of about 4-5. Rising the pH of the hair would cause all of the moisture to seep in but not be retained. So baking soda is more of a precursor shampoo but still valuable considering most people already have it in their households.

  • Mix 1 t teaspoon of baking soda per 1 water bottles (16 oz)
  • Rinse through hair and leave on for about 3 to 5 minutes

 

Protein Treatment

Egg+ Mayonnaise+ Olive Oil

This is great as a natural protein treatment. Protein treatments help strengthen your hair and avoid breakage. Making your own is an easy way to ensure protein is in your regimen. Eggs are already high in protein and mayonnaise contains helpful ingredients like oil, fatty acids and eggs as well. So mixed together you have a powerful protein treatment for damaged or dry hair.

  • Start with wet hair
  • Crack 2 eggs into a bowl
  • Use 5-6large scoops of mayonnaise(or more as needed)
  • If olive oil is available, apply a few drops to the mixture
  • Wrap hair in a plastic bag and let sit for 15-20 minutes
  • Rinse out

Hair Masks

Honey + Olive Oil

Honey is full of antioxidants which aid in having a healthy scalp necessary for hair growth.  Olive oil easily penetrates the hair shaft and nourishes your hair. Combined, this mask can help replenish hair and add shine. I tried this mask a few years ago and really liked it. You can find my Youtube video here. It can get a little messy, so be sure to have a towel draped around your neck.

  • Mix 1/2 cup of honey and 1/4 cup of olive oil
  • Apply to wet hair in sections
  • Cover with plastic bag and let sit for 20-30 minutes
  • Rinse hair (can use shampoo to make sure the mask is completely out)

 

Avocado+Coconut Oil+Honey

I dislike avocados as a food but for my hair, I’m all in! Blended avocados have a thick and creamy consistency that my course hair craves! As far as nutrients, they are high in “monounsaturated fatty acids” which are good fats that keep hair moisturized. We are all about moisture as naturalistas! The properties in avocado, honey, and coconut oil will hopefully leave your hair feeling smooth, moisturized and lively.

  • Blend 1 avocado with an ample amount of coconut oil and honey
  • Apply to wet hair
  • Leave on for about 30 minutes
  • Wrap with plastic cap and/or deep conditioning cap
  • Rinse out of hair

Yogurt+Banana

This combination helps rejuvenate dry and brittle hair. Bananas are full of vitamins like biotin which help strengthen your hair. A dose of biotin can help hair and skin grow. Yogurt is full of protein and is a thick substance to fully coat hair strands. This works best using a blender because the tiny little pieces of banana can be hard to get out of natural hair. I tried it with just mushing the banana and I was picking banana flakes out of my hair for the next few days! So mix well with a blender:

  • 1 ripe banana
  • 2 tablespoons of Organic Greek Yogurt
  • Apply to wet hair in sections
  • Cover with cap and let sit for 30 minutes

Coconut Milk+Honey

If I saw a hair product with these ingredients I would be immediately interested. So why not make your own with just these ingredients? Coconut milk naturally conditions hair and helps restore it. It aids in helping with split ends and promotes hair growth. Honey’s antibacterial products can help soothe a dry and itchy scalp. This mixture will be more watery, just by the nature of coconut milk, so for easy application use an old shampoo bottle or spray bottle once the mixture is created.

  • 1 can of coconut milk
  • 3-4 teaspoons of honey
  • Apply to wet hair in sections
  • Cover with cap and let sit for 25-35 minutes

There are a plethora of DIY natural hair mixtures to try, these are just a few. You can mix and match these ingredients in so many different ways. And you can always add your favorite oils to them to spice things up. I’m looking forward to trying the things I haven’t and resisting the mixtures I’ve loved.

As always,

-POP (1)

 

 

 

 

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3 Ways to Step Up Your Hair Moisturizing Game

Greetings Daizies,

Fall season is on it’s horizon and with that comes the problematic split ends and chronic dryness that can come upon us all with natural hair. It’s time to take moisturizing to the next level as we prepare for those cold times. Here’s how to make sure you don’t slack off this season and pay for it later.

Keep it Simple

The best thing to do is keep it nice and simple. There are 2 popular methods for daily moisturizing. The LOC method and the LCO method. LOC stands for liquid, oil, cream/butter and LCO, a different order, liquid, oil, cream/butter. I’ve used all sorts of order combinations and for my hair I can’t say I’ve found a difference. I recently used OLC and I don’t think that’s even a thing lol but I typically use the LCO method because oil seals the moisture in my hair more effectively. The first step of coating the hair with a water-based leave-in conditioner or plain old water to simply hydrate the hair. Then the next step of oil or a cream is to seal that moisture. The last step is to close the cuticle with the oil or cream. 

For the SIMPLE part, choose your 3 products to hydrate, seal, and coat your hair. Have these 3 products in an easy to find place to eliminate the struggle of figuring out what you’ll us each day. Ideas for your LOC or LCO method.

Liquid:

  • Put water in a spray bottle and spritz hair
  • Leave-In Conditioners 
  • Hair milk or hair lotion
  • Hair pudding

Cream/Butter:

  • Shea Butter
  • If water was used as the liquid, leave-in can also be used as the cream

Oil:

Keep it Regular

Make daily moisturizing a habit. I choose to do this every night before showering (so I can rinse all of the oil off my hands/arms) but try to do it a few hours before bed so I don’t end up just sleeping. If it helps, put a daily reminder on your phone so you don’t miss your ideal time to do your hair.

Keep it Fun

Maintaining natural hair can be a time-consuming. Keep it fun by catching up on your favorite show. This can also help motivate you not to spend too much time or lallygag by setting a goal to finish by ‘x’ amount of episodes. For me, I try to finish my LCO within 1 episode of ‘Insecure’ and for a full on twist out, within 1 episode of ‘Power’.

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Overall, maintaining a consistent moisturizing routine is one of the most crucial keys to healthy natural hair. If you’ve been slacking it’s never too late to step up your game. For more questions pertaining your moisturizing regimen, comment below and be sure to follow my blog and Facebook posts for more updates. 

As always,

-POP (1)

The BEST DIY Hair Masque for Defined 4b/4c Natural Hair

Hello Daizies!

I’ve discovered my absolute favorite DIY hair masque for my 4c/4b natural hair. I wanted to use it twice to make sure my reaction to the masque was consistent. Each time I’ve used this for my hair I am amazed with how many curls just come out of nowhere as I’m washing it out of my hair. If you haven’t tried Indian Healing Clay/ Bentonite Clay+ Apple Cider Vinegar for your hair, you need to stop what you’re doing and try it NOW!

What You Need:

Indian Healing Clay $9

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Apple Cider Vinegar $5

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In a plastic bowl or cup, pour a generous amount of clay into the container. Mix about equal amount of ACV to the clay so that it forms a creamy mix.

I used about 40-50% of the jar within one use lol! I plan on using it more sparingly next time so I can at least get 3 uses out of it. I plan on doing the clay masque at least once a month.

How to Use it:

This clay is a cleansing clay and takes out all of the dirt, toxins, and metals in your hair so it’s purpose is more of a deep cleanser.  I first section my hair into 4 sections and then start with one section by first making it damp using a spray bottle. Breaking the sections into even smaller sections, apply the mixture to each strand of hair from root to tip. I make sure to massage my scalp as well. Now if you’ve used Indian healing clay as a face masque, you know that it gets really hard and dry fast. But you can feel the tingly and pulling feeling so you can definitely tell it’s working. On your hair it will feel dry at the time but don’t let that stop you from completing the masque. It takes about an hour for me to apply the clay to each stand and I then cover my hair with a plastic bag for about 30 minutes. I use the remaining clay for my face for the last 10 minutes of the time.

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After the 30 minutes are up I head into the shower to rinse it out with warm water. The clay just melts from my hair and I can immediately feel hundreds of super defined curls! I can feel my hair super moisturized and with more curls than I ever feel after using any other type of cleanser or even deep conditioners.

Lastly, I follow up with a conditioner to make sure I get any remaining clay from my hair and scalp. I seal with coconut oil to lock in all of the moisture. I am always amazed with the results!

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I usually never wear a wash and go because I feel like my curls dry up and get too tangled or frizzy., However, with this masque my curls remained defined and in tact the next day so I finally wore a wash and go. I never knew my hair was this curly and I love that this DIY masque brings all of the coils and curls to light.

Stay tuned for more updates and my very special grad photoshoot coming soon!

As always, remember to…

-POP

Skincare Routine for Clear, Healthy Skin

Hey Daizies!

I hope everyone is enjoying their spring so far! The weather has been so beautiful lately! As the sun continues to shine, it’s always nice to have clear shining skin to glow along with it. My skin has minimal breakouts and is classified as balanced/”normal” skin.

Exfoliate/Deep Cleanse: African Black Soap

African Black Soap has been the most consistently beneficial product I’ve used this past year. I use this every other night or sometimes back to back if I wore a full face of makeup. What I love about black soap is that it really cleanses deep into the pores. It’s so important to make sure your face is clean and to get all of the makeup off your face before sleeping. Lathering black soap on my face after cleansing really ensures that my face is squeeky clean. It can be drying, so I only leave on for about 5 minutes or when my skin starts feeling tight. I immediately follow with shea butter as a moisturizer. I’m using the African Black Soap from my ghana trip last summer but you can purchase it on Amazon of course and at most beauty supply stores. I know Shea Moisture also has their own bar too.black soap.png

Cleanse: NOXZEMA ,Clean & Clear Oil-Free Deep Action Cream Facial Cleanser

On the days I’m not using African Black Soap, I use a gentler cleanser like NOXZEMA or Clean & Clear Cream Facial Cleanser . What I like about Noxzema is that it has a tingle and cooling feeling which is really relaxing to my skin. I purchase the original version which “tingles and refreshes”. Its goal is to cleans, moisturize, and soothe. One jar lasts me over 4 months, which is a really good deal considering it’s only about $5 at Walgreens.

With Clean and Clear’s Deep Action Cleanser, it’s kind of similar to Noxzema except I feel like Noxzema does a better job at getting all of the dirt from my face. I alternate between products just to switch it up a little bit. After using either product, I use a damp white towel to wipe the cream off and to see if there’s any dirt remaining. If so, I use the cream one more time or go for the African Black Soap for a one and done cleaning.


Makeup Remover: Coconut Oil

I used to use coconut oil to cleanse my face everyday but now I use it more like 1-2 times a week. It’s great as a makeup remover followed by one of the cleansing creams previously mentioned. I feel like I get more of a thorough cleanse when I pair the coconut oil with another product because often times when I use the towel to clean the coconut oil off, there’s still some residue of makeup/dirt left on my face. For moisturizing, coconut oil used by itself is best for days when I didn’t wear makeup or only light amount of makeup.

All Time Favorite Moisturizer: Shea Butter

As of now, shea butter is really the only moisturizer I use for my face. I opt for only using shea butter on my face now instead of lotion. It’s all natural and leaves a balanced amount of shine and moisture. After every shower, and when I rinse my face in the morning, I follow with shea butter. I’m still using the shea butter I brought from Ghana which is the best thing I’ve ever bought when traveling. I’d highly invest in shea butter, it’s purposes for hair and skin are endlessly beneficial.

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The gallon on the left is what I took back with me!

Last but not least, of course drink lots of water! The more water I drink, the less breakouts I have.

Some of my favorite glowing skin photos below:

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xoxo,

-POP

Self Care Trip 2017 | I Think Things Will Be Okay

Greetings Daizies,

I was on a roll in August with frequent uploads until I went to Ghana. It was a jam packed program and I’ve basically written tons of posts in my head lol. It’s crazy that it’s almost October and I’ll be starting my final year of college. Right now I’m in Portugal on a well needed self care trip. I needed a buffer between Ghana and going straight home. When I study abroad, I find it hard to go straight from an active, adventurous, and fun program filled with exploring to the rigorous demands of school, life, and rainy Seattle. It can truly be depressing. My intentions with these 3 days in Portugal is for reflection, rest, and to get into the right mindset to go back home.

I could feel myself getting anxious during my last week in Ghana. I would wake up with my heart beating fast and feeling like I wanted to cry. I had literally just woken up and nothing had happened yet. That’s how I knew I was just generally nervous and anxious, when I was just waking up and already sad. I strongly related to Solange’s ‘Cranes in the Sky’ when she said “I tried to run it away
Thought then my head be feeling clearer
I traveled 70 states
Thought moving round make me feel better” because when I’m away from home I can just leave my worries, problems, responsibilities, people, anything really at home. I feel free and I’m learning when I’m gone. But the sudden reality that this was my last study abroad program and around the corner was real life, kept running through my mind. Everything is different regarding a lot of things in my life compared to coming back abroad from Italy and the UK. I just don’t know what life is going to be like with the change of dynamics in personal relationships. The closer my departure came, the more anxious I became. I didn’t want to necessarily stay but I knew I didn’t want to go home just yet. This is what my trip to Portugal is for.

I’ve been in Lisbon for just a day and I can say I haven’t felt anxious or sad. I took a long nap when I arrived and then explored the area until I found live music and some food. Along the way I went shopping and bought a couple of cute pieces for my new fall wardrobe. Going solo travel is so fun because I’m on my own time and can literally do whatever I want and go off schedule depending on my mood. Most of the time, people want to just go go go as soon as they land. It’s like every minute needs to be occupied or its considered wasting time. But when its just me, myself, and I things are planned according to my mood and interests. A 3 hour nap was needed and some shopping in between occurred just because I wanted it to. And right now, I’m just blogging and have a  general idea of what time I want to leave the house, but there’s no set time or another person I have to be mindful of. It’s just what I needed right now after a whole month of organized activity and being with a group.

I know that this won’t be forever but I want my relaxed mindset to last a while. I’m going to do some sincere journaling to brainstorm solutions to problems I can control and ways I can be at peace with things I have no control over. I know I would rather be happy than sad. But there’s just days where I don’t know how to start my day because my mind is overwhelmed with every possible problem and challenging scenario in the world. It always seems to happen when I’m about to start a brand new day or go out somewhere. But when I get moving and start my day, I don’t have time to think about the reasons why I felt numb waking up. I want to work through whatever that is and not just keeping myself busy an avoiding it. I know I briefly looked into therapy but I put it on hold since I was about to travel. I might resume that search when I get back. Maybe it’ll be a rewarding experience. I’ve heard it’s lit lol.

I’m going straight into my career search when I get back home. It’s crazy to think this entire chapter of undergrad is about to come to an end. I think the idea of being in a full-time job is scary because it’s not just a 2 or 3 month internship, but you’re really there…every weekday…forever basically.  I think for a while I tried avoided this reality because I know my overall goal is to have my own business. I would have thought that I would already be a business owner right now at 21 and that hasn’t happened yet. Not being where I want with my goal as an entrepreneur was very stressful probably earlier this summer but now I’m in a different place. When I look at the age 21 typed right now it actually is quite young lol. I guess I’m saying this to just reflect on an ongoing reality that I’ve put myself at ease with so that I can help myself realize that I can make peace with my current problems as well. I know going on dozens of interviews is nerve-wracking but I’ve been on dozens before and I just want to get this done and secure this bag. I won’t loose sight of having a business and I will continue to build my brand, take action on my ideas, and make progress step by step (and daibydai).

By now I have almost devoured an entire box of grapes. Grapes were so rare in Ghana an d just 10 large grapes were equivalent to $3 USD. So you can guess that I refrained from eating grapes. On today’s agenda I plan to go to the Castelo de S. Jorge, Museu Colecao Berado and Bario Alto. We shall see how the day goes. And at night, I will be doing some sincere journaling, reflecting, and slowly getting into the productive mode of facing my responsibilities.

When I look at my life now, I know that I am exactly where I wanted to be 5 years ago. I’ve actually gone to so many places I dreamed of. I made it into my major. I’ve passed all those classes that I thought I wouldn’t. I made it through back to back interviews and had some interesting internships. I finally have the fro I always wanted. I think I’m doing just fine and I’ve made it so far. Maybe there’s nothing wrong with the reality I’ve been so reluctant to face but right now I’m just thinking to myself and I think I will be okay.

 

View from the Castello S. Jorge

 

 

-POP

Summer Fitness 2017 Goals

Greetings Daizies!

Last time I blogged, I was preparing for a deep condition before my first silk press (which I’ll do a blog post on soon). Since then, I finished finals and started a full-time internship in advertising.  After my first full 8 hour work day, I was so exhausted when I got home and was wondering how I would survive the whole summer. I was so tired coming home that all I wanted to do was sleep. I then started to incorporate going to the gym, in order to make my summer more fun and not simply working and sleeping every single day.

Fitness started to become part of my summer routine and now it is week 3 of my new life-style. I started going to the YMCA near my house and have participated in weekly Zumba, Pilates, and Strength & Conditioning classes. I enjoy group fitness classes because it’s structured and also pushes me to try keeping up with the instructor during class. So far I have successfully worked out at the gym 3 times each week which is a huge accomplishment for me considering going that often was always a goal during the school year. After going to one of the fitness classes or even working out individually on the elliptical or free weights, I noticed I have so much more energy.

My quantitative goals with becoming more active is to loose 1 pound a week until school starts (so about 15 pounds). When I came back from studying abroad, I had lost 11 pounds without even trying. I really liked my lifestyle I had when being abroad simply because I was always walking and ate way better than I did when I was home. I hoped to keep up the healthy eating but after a quarter of the year away from BBQ chips, Jimmy John’s, Charley’s Steakery and more, it was hard to not indulge in my favorite junk foods lol. Anyways, I kinda went overboard and combined with being less active during the school year and not counting on walking 10 miles each weekend for travelling, weight gain came back faster than I imagined. I realize that now and want to make a change. I can’t continue in my twenties eating 2 giant bowls of cocoapuffs every other day and wonder why I’m gaining more weight than normal lol.

A healthier diet is also important for my overall health goals.  I’ve cut out sugary drinks and replaced them with cucumber water. CUCUMBER WATER IS AMAZING! Like seriously I am having no trouble drinking 4+ bottles of water of day just by adding 3 cucumber slices. The extra flavor is everything. Some of the benefits are that it helps with weight loss (drinking more makes you feel full), its rich in antioxidants, and supports healthy skin. I’m adding more nutritional value to my diet by eating healthy snacks such as trail mix, granola bars, and bananas instead of hot Cheetos and Swiss Rolls lol. Just taking it step by step ….day by day literally. But every now in there I do give myself a treat 😉

My other healthy goals is to become stronger and  be able to lift heavier weights. Right now I stick to the 3lb weight during classes and I want to work my way up.  I’m learning more about health and fitness via other blogs and articles but all together it’s really fun being more active and having another goal to reach. I’m excited to make it to the finish line!

Xoxo,

-POP

Springin’ forward in 2017

Spring is upon us and its the perfect season for Daizies to blossom!

Although it feels like winter, the sunshine is starting to peak through. It’s hard to believe the year is already 1/4 of the way over. At the beginning of the year, I of course wrote down some goals and things I wanted to work on for the new year… resolutions if you want to call it that. I believe spring is the perfect time to look back at that list and revise, elaborate, delete, and/or reflect on my feelings towards what was originally written down. Even within 3 months, things can change and especially in college I am learning more and more about myself.

Revising for more effective goals

It’s easy to plan resolutions during relaxing times. For example, saying I want to go to the gym once a week and jog outside each week sounded realistic over winter break when I had absolutely nothing to do. But once school started it was less realistic considering my work days consisted of being at school and studying 10-12 hours a day with the gym an entire bus ride away (lol the bus ride is only like 8 minutes but still…). I still want to be more active because of all the health benefits that come with it. So how do I take the steps to get the results I want?

What are the obstacles preventing me?

Getting to root causes will help determine solutions. In this case its simple. I’m tired, the gym is too far away, and when it’s cold outside I would rather be under my covers watching Scandal and figuring out why Abby tried Olivia. With the root causes laid out I can now brainstorm solutions to some or most. Tired? Pick out time frames in which I have the most energy and days that are least exhausting. It’s probably not a good idea to plan going to the gym or exercising on class heavy days such as Mondays and Wednesdays. Even though I don’t start class until 1:30 pm, I always use my mornings to get a head start on homework and studying. Even Tuesdays and Thursdays can be busy with working in the late morning, one class in the afternoon, and followed by group project meetings. This leaves me with Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. I have now found my ideal time frame to take action.

Why do I want to do this?

Reaffirming my motivations will help inspire and determine how your objectives have changed. If you can’t really come up with why YOU want to do something then maybe it’s someone else’s goal or not yours. Also, things can change and you may not be as interested in something as you were a few months ago and that’s okay. Asking questions like “Who am I doing this for and why?” are great questions to start with.

My example: Exercising has been found to reduce the effects of stress, and I want to have healthy stress management. Exercise makes you feel good (releases endorphins). I’m in my 20s now and want to set healthy habits so I can live a long life and have a strong heart, muscles, etc. It’s actually fun to push myself and do more than I thought I could .

Baby steps. What can I do THIS week to make my best effort?

I’m probably not going to jump up and become an active gym member anytime soon but I do want to use my school’s gym while my tuition is still automatically paying for it. So starting small I can point out activities held at the gym that I actually enjoy. Roller skating! It is a form of exercise and won’t be a huge jump. It is also on a Friday which I identified as an ideal day for exercising. If I have other plans, I could try yoga in the late mornings. I’m genuinely interested in going to a yoga class since I’ve been doing yoga independently for 10 years every morning. I’m interested in seeing what it’s like being in an actual class and improving my form. Don’t feel like signing up for the class? There is always Sunday and a park down the street where I can jog for 15-20 minutes. I have now given myself 3 detailed opportunities to begin baby steps of frequent exercising.

I used a simple example of exercising but using the framework can help with more  is complex and long-term goals. With longer-term goals of starting my career after graduating in a year and becoming an entrepreneur, this same evaluation can be used on a timescale of thinking 0-3, 3-6, and 6-9 month increments. Reflecting and taking corrective action when necessary is essential to effective goal setting and goal reaching!

In the meantime, take the time do something that makes you life or smile and enjoy the sunshine ( depending on where you live this may be every now and then).