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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Easy Bedtime Routine for Natural Hair

Hey Daizies!

Times have gotten so busy and flying by faster than ever. I took out my braids because they were getting a lil raggedy and I was high-key missing my fro. This quarter I’ve had consistent late nights in the lab finishing coding for my Information Systems class, so spending two hours on twist outs just aren’t doable right now. But I’m still keeping my hair moisturized with an easy, time efficient routine.

  1. Divide hair into 4 sections
  2. One section at a time, distribute shea butter from root to tip. I pay special attention to the ends of my hair, especially since the weather is getting colder. I bought a gallon of shea butter while I was in Ghana (the most authentic ever), but you can get shea butter from most beauty supply stores and even on Amazon. I LOVE shea butter because it’s thick, soft, and has just enough of an oily finish to coat the ends but not too much to where my hair feels weighed down

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    Shea Butter from Ghana
  3. The next step is to seal with an oil. For this part I usually use castor oil and/or coconut oil. I often spend a few minutes massaging my scalp with coconut oil to help stimulate blood flow which ultimate helps with hair growth. When managing my hair I only use my fingers to detangle. I’m able to accurately locate knots and soften them with the shea butter and oils
  4. After coating with shea butter and oils, I twist my hair in four sections using a hairband and wrap with a satin scarf.
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Go-to hairstyle

Nowadays, I am wearing my hair in a high-puff or a low side bun with a twisted bang. Fridays are usually the days where I where my fro out loose since wash day falls around the weekend. Honestly, don’t have as much time but still enjoy taking care of my hair. This routine takes around 10-20 minutes depending on how quickly I’m trying to go to bed. In the mornings, my hair is still pretty moisturized from my night procedure so just a tad of leave-in conditioner does the job.  Next up in natural hair is TRIM SZN! More updates to come.

Xoxo,

-POP

3 Years of Natural Hair: 2 years Post-Big Chop Update!

It’s been a little over 3 years since starting my natural hair journey and it has been filled with so much learning and discovery of not just my hair, but of myself as a person. My last update was at the 2 year mark and I finally had some length going on and I was extremely proud of my progress. Since passing the big chop, and short/long stage, I am now at a length that was my ultimate #goal when I first went natural. While there are things I want to work on, I finally have that carefree Solange inspired healthy and thick afro that I always wanted.

Protective Styles of the Year

  • Box braids

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I LOVED this summer style last year. I used 4 1/2 packs of Xpressions hair in the color 1B and some highlights of the color 2. They lasted for about 2 months before I moved on to my next style.

  • Marley twists

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There’s just something about dark brown and honey blonde twists that I just LOVE! Definitely one of my favorite styles ever. This style was low maintenance and great for traveling.

  • Fro out & Loose Styles

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I had a lot of fun styling my hair this past year. The new length was always exciting. Within the last year, I embraced my natural 4c hair by wearing it in its natural state and realizing I don’t always have to do twist and braid outs that mimic a looser curl pattern to have a good hair day. This was the year of loving the way my hair is and not trying to force curls that just aren’t always there. When I first went natural, I had the 4a/4b hair texture in mind and longed for the loose spirally curls. After the big chopped I soon realized that my hair is only 4c around the edges but for the most part I would be dealing with 4c hair. I kept my kinks and coils masked in twist outs that made my hair look wavy, and rarely wore my hair out unless it was manipulated in some way. This year, I gained the confidence to wear my hair as it was in loose fro’s and other styles that didn’t always require curl manipulation and enhancement. There’s always more to the journey, even 3 years into my path.

  • High Puff

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Once I figured out the headband method and my hair was of length, you couldn’t tell me nothing with a high puff. This is the style I always wear one day post wash day. It allows my hair to dry and stay out of the way to reduce tangles.

  • 2 stand twists

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At first I didn’t think my hair would stay twisted and would unravel, but when I finally tried wearing two strand twists as a style, I was so thrilled. It’s a great style in between wash days and lasted 5 days of traveling when I was in Barcelona. I like to add some golden puffs as an accessory as well as some head wraps. The best part is that you can untwist them for a 2-in-1 protective style.

  • Hair wraps

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Headwraps have saved me so many mornings of stress and chaos. If I was ever in a hurry, I knew that head wraps could always save the day. Even when I’m not in a rush, I loved wearing bold patterns and vibrant colored head wraps and looked up different ways of wearing them. I formed a collection when traveling and now have an assortment of wraps to choose from. I’m glad I hopped on the head wrap train!

  • Freetress waterwave crochet

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Crochet made its way back into my life with my birthday wavy style. I’m not a strong French braider so its great that I can cover the base braids with whatever type of hair I choose. This time I wanted to try a short wavy bob.

  • Straight hair crochet

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I was interested in wearing straight hair without actually straightening my own so once again crochet for any and every hairstyle wish! I was surprised with how long the style lasted. With Janet Collection kanekalon hair, the crochet lasted 6 weeks.

  • Wigs!

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After weeks of researching wigs, I finally purchased my first units from Aliexpress and Same beauty. My favorite is Veronica (first image) because the closure easily blends with my natural hair. Full review can be found here: https://youtu.be/eK6UPnzItJs

  • Silk press

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I finally went for it and got my first silk press and a long overdue professional trim.

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And most recently, I tried crochet Havana twists and this style was a 3-in1. From wearing it in long twists, to unravelling, and then cutting it short, I loved the versatility this one style had to offer.

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With all of the growth and changes, it’s amazing to see how far I’ve come. This photo was 1 year post transitioning and 4 months post Big Chop.

Favorite Natural Hair Products

I still have my favorite brands that were solidified last year. I select my products based on ingredients and my hair needs of frequent moisture. My all time favorite products are from Trader Joe’sCantu, , Shea Moisture, and Taliah Waajid.

 

How My Routine Has Changed

Wash and go’s just had to go. I used to be able to co-wash my hair the day of class or work and just go, but with more length to my hair the shrinkage is harder for me to manage. I prefer to go through the entire process of detangling before and after wetting my hair, and so with the 3rd year of my journey, I stopped doing wash and go’s.

I now stretch my hair every week which has helped minimize matting and tangles. After wash day, I typically wear my hair in a puff while it dries. Then I braid my hair in about 8  large braids and wear my hair in a stretched braid-out. I found that keeping my hair stretched allows for quicker nighttime styling and for the detangling process when wash day rolls around.

My recent blog post’s of prepooing and using apple cider vinegar, shed a light on my favorite new additions to my haircare routine. During my first couple of years through transitioning and after the big chop, I often went straight into the shampoo process of wash day. I now make the prepoo/detangling process a necessity for wash day.

Furthermore, I figured out the right proportions that make apple cider vinegar rinses work for me. I had tried ACV in January of 2016 and I didn’t like it at all but it was because I basically used almost half the bottle of ACV within one rinse. After I figured out the 1/4 ACV to 3/4 water proportions, the mix has changed my scalp game forever.

Things I wish I knew

I got my first professional trim since my big chop in 2015. Going into my appointment, I was just sure that the stylist would barely have to cut any hair off. After my hair was blow dried, I was shocked to witness the dead and split ends with my own eyes and ended up having almost 1.5 inches of hair cut off. I know I hadn’t trimmed my hair every 3 months like I should have but I still thought I was doing a job trimming my hair at least every 4-5 months. Cutting my hair when it was fully blown out with a dryer helped make the split ends more visible and I decided in May that I would only cut my hair when it was blown out. Three months later I held up that goal and recently trimmed my hair by myself. I still plan to get a professional trim at least twice a year now, so that I’m not in for a shock later down in the line.

My Updated Hair Goals

I am now on my quest for waist length natural hair but this time without in a specific time frame. After my first silk press and trim in May, I stared at my collarbone length hair and got very sad once I realized I wouldn’t reach waist length natural hair by the time I graduated. That was always my goal, and I had this illusion before flat ironing my hair, that I was almost there. After the trim of dead ends, I faced the reality that I wasn’t quite there. I thought to myself, what in the world have I been doing wrong? I had been moisturizing, deep conditioning, doing hot oil treatments, protective styles, you name it! But still, I was only at the length I had when I had my hair relaxed.

What got me out of this  funk, was looking at  my old throwback pictures from 2015 of my big chop. Even looking at the pictures from last year, I can tell my hair has grown so much! My deep conditioning sessions weren’t in vain because even the stylist noted how moisturized and healthy my strands were. Like I said at the beginning, my hair right now  is what I dreamed of when I first went natural. This is what I had to remind myself because what I have now is what seemed like would take forever to get to. One day I will have waist length hair, it may take a few years but I know one thing…I HAVE TO GET FREQUENT TRIMS!

I love the path I am on and the dedication I have to caring for my hair.  My hours of deep conditioning and massaging my scalp are also a form of self care because. Seeing my hair grow and thrive is exciting and I’m ready for this next year of healthy hair and life!

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-POP

How to Use Apple Cider Vinegar for Natural Hair

 

I’ve mentioned ACV in a few blog posts before but haven’t made a specific post detailing how I go about using it in my hair routine. My love for ACV came about during the times when my scalp just doesn’t stop itching. Usually, this happens every few months and seems although I deep condition every week and shampoo every two weeks, there are times when there’s still too much build up and my scalp becomes irritated. I reach for ACV and then these problems cease.

The benefits of ACV seemed too good to be true. When I first heard of using the vinegar for hair I was wondering what could be so great about apple cider vinegar and why was everyone raving about it. Well, for starters ACV has pH balancing properties. Before I thought pH balance was only something internal but I had no idea your scalp had a pH balance and this prevents the growth of bacteria and dryness. Basically pH balance is an important part of scalp health and ultimately hair growth. It acts as a natural cleanser and removes product buildup and dirt from gels, leave-ins and other daily products. These properties explain why my hair and scalp feel so relieved after using the rinse.

When using ACV it is important to use the right portions to reap all of the benefits. You don’t want to make the mistake of using too much of the ACV. I had the tendency of pouring too much ACV into my bottle of water just because I wanted to make sure it REALLY worked. However, when I used the portions of half water and half ACV, my hair felt harder and drier and my prior deep conditioning treatment seemed pointless. ACV is an acidic ingredient so dilutting with water is crucial. The measurements I use for my 4c and prone to dryness hair is 1 parts ACV and 3 parts water.

  • 1/4 cup of ACV and 3/4 cup of water

Easiest Way to Use ACV

I’ve tried using ACV before and after I condition, as well as using only ACV as a rinse and following with a leave-in conditioner. I typically use the rinse method when I have a protective style that has a lot of hair ie: crochet braids, twists, etc. When I have more time on my hands I use ACV as my shampoo and then follow with a conditioner to reapply the moisture.

To apply the ACV it is easiest to use with a spray bottle. You can spray the mixture directly onto the scalp or open the bottle top and rinse it throughout your hair. This process usually takes about 5-10 minutes. I then let the mixture sit on my hair for at least 5 minutes and then I rinse thoroughly with cool water.

I use ACV monthly or when an itchy scalp scenario arises. It’s not a weekly type of treatment due to its acidic nature. It’s been about a year since I first started using ACV and I gladly hold it in my arsenal of top DIY products for natural hair.

  Learn more about the benefits of ACV in detail here. 

-POP

 

Protective Style Update: Crochet Havana Twists

Greetings Daizies!

My latest protective style has been Havana twists! Not just any Havana twists, but crochet! I was initially apprehensive of crochet twists because I wasn’t sure if they were going to look like… crochet. I was even going to opt for the tried and true Marley hair for a crochet fro but I am so glad I hung on to my curiosity rather than fear. My crochet twists are definitely one of my top favorite styles I’ve done so far!

I especially LOVE the color.While I don’t plan on dying my hair anytime soon, the beauty of protective styles is that I can play with different colors on synthetic hair rather than dying my actual hair.

Logistics

  • 5 1/2 packs of Janet Collection Havana Mambo Twist, 1 EXTRA pack that I ended up returningIMG_2818
  • Mix between (5) 1B/30 and (2) ombre packs (OEM4/30)
  • Braiding time : 3 1/2 hours
  • Crochet time: 2 hours
  • Durability: The twists did get frizzy, as I expected, after about a week and a half. I maintained the styles by trimming the stray hairs and tangles. At the start of week 4, I replaced the most frizzy twists with the extra pack of hair from my 6th pack.
  • Maintenance: I continue to moisturize my scalp and base braids with leave-in conditioner and oil(coconut or Jamaican black castor oil). I wash my hair using a spray bottle, while tying the twists up in a pineapple. I mix ACV and water together in the bottle and rinse the mixture through my scalp, avoiding the mass of hair for an easier wash day and quicker drying. I follow with conditioner as usual.

LOVE this style and I’ll definitely try jumbo twists again. I plan to take the twists out this weekend, for a grand total of 4 1/2 weeks as as durable style.

Stay tuned for more!-POP