Hair Journey Update: Winter 2014

relaxed hair care regimen

Hey guys-- do you know what today is? Today marks my first hair journey update of the year! While my relaxed hair care regimen has remained the same for the most part, I've seen a few changes in my hair over the last few months. While most of the subtle changes are positive, others have been a bit disappointing. On the brighter side of things, I've experienced some growth, I'm even more in tune with what my hair needs, and I'm finally buckling down with my consistency. On a sad note, however, I've experienced some postpartum shedding and thinning edges. I'll get into that in a minute, though. Thank you all for continuing to check in and read about my updates. Sharing them here have really helped with my goals! Now on to the good stuff!

Hair Stats
Last relaxer: February 15, 2014
Next relaxer: May 24, 2014
Last Trim: January 21, 2014
Current Length: slightly APL (after trim)

Current Goals:
1. Obtain overall thickness, as opposed to length.
2. Grow back crown breakage. 
3. Try new low-manipulation hairstyles 
(twist-outs and braid-outs) 
4. Stick to my routine! Remain consistent in my hair care. 
5. Keep it simple- moisturize and seal. cleanse. deep condition. 

In remaining consistent, I must make sure to stick to these tasks:
1. Use little to no direct heat.
2. Moisturize + seal and wear bonnet each night.
3. Deep condition weekly under the dryer.
4. Massage scalp with Hair Trigger 2-3x weekly.
5. Apply JBCO to edges and ends nightly.
6. Use what I have- no purchasing of any new products. 
Exception: running out of staples.

The Stretch

Prior to February 15, 2014, my last relaxer was on October 25, 2013. I stretched for exactly 16 weeks and one day. And honestly, I think this was one of the toughest stretches since being on my healthy hair journey. Not only did I experience lots of shedding in December, my edges began thinning. So I stopped wearing my everyday bun and tight wig cap to see if these things were contributing factors to my thinning edges. I learned later, however, that post-partum shedding was the culprit for my more-than-usual bout of shedding.

Since I had abandoned my bun and heavy weave/wig wearing, I decided to try more low-manipulation styles. I must say, this is the best thing I've done during my stretch. I finally mastered bantu-knot outs and had even started using flexi-rods!

relaxed hair styles medium length hair relaxed hair styles for medium length hair

As far as products and practices, I've stayed true to keeping it simple. In a nutshell, I cleansed, moisturized, sealed, and protective styled my way through. I did, however, do more deep conditioning with protein conditioners under heat (or while in the shower under a cap). My two favorite light protein conditioners are still Aphogee 2 Minute Reconstructor and ORS Replenishing Conditioner. And because I am on a strict no-buy, I still haven't purchased any new products. I've only repurchased staples.

When winter finally did set in, I started moisturizing with my beloved Elasta QP Olive Oil and Mango Butter Moisturizer. I continued to seal with grapeseed oil nightly or every other night. I also continued to add a drop of JBCO to the ends of my hair every other night after moisturizing and sealing. Since using the grapeseed oil and JBCO, my hair has become much thicker.

The Process

Per my usual relaxer process--I applied the Optimum Care No-Lye Relaxer. Directly after relaxing and rinsing out the relaxer, I applied ORS Replenishing Conditioner to replenish the lost protein.  After rinsing out the protein I neutralized, cleansing thoroughly, and conditioned once more with the conditioner that comes with the relaxer. I then rinsed, squeezing out the excess water with a t-shirt. Then I applied a spray of Aphogee Keratin and Green Tea Reconstructurizer as my leave-in conditioner.  I moisturized and sealed with Elasta QP Olive Oil and Mango Butter Moisturizer and coconut oil, then just a drop of GVP Silk Remedy before wrapping it and putting it in my scarf + bonnet for the night.  

The Results

The day after relaxing, my hair felt soft, yet strong. The shedding had definitely decreased, as I didn't notice many shed hairs as I was taking my hair down. My crown is growing back pretty fast, too. The added protein, low-manipulation styles, and scalp massages have probably contributed to that. So despite the minor challenges in the last few months, I can say that I've seen improvements in my hair health.

In the upcoming months, I will be trying more protective and low-manipulation hairstyles. Since I had so much success with the flexi-rods and bantu-knots, I'm going to try perfecting my braid-outs and perm rod sets. 

I will continue to use JBCO on my edges and ends and implement more ceramides into my regimen. I may take the plunge and buy hempseed oil and wheat germ oil to add to my deep conditioning soon. I will also continue to do scalp massages every other night.

Back to Top