consultant update, perhaps the beginnings of a new regimen

I spent months 12-20 of being sisterlocked (Jan-Oct 2012 of being sisterlocked) worried that my hair wasn’t settling right and venturing out for second, third, and fourth opinions about my hair. I ultimately did end up trying out a new consultant (the fourth “opinioner”); however, that didn’t last too long (about 2-3 retightenings?) until I found my way back home to my original consultant.

Now, my original consultant is moving out of town and I have found myself on the hunt for a replacement! I didn’t reach out to these other consultants for a couple of reasons- #2: took all day to do retightenings (I don’t have the patience nor the time to sit around in the chair); #3: has enough clients already; and #4 (the fourth “opinoner”): could’ve worked out… but I always felt like she was overwhelmed by the # of locs/thickness of my hair. Bumping up the price on me via email was the last straw.

I took to the sisterlocks registry and started making a few calls/emails. I’ve connected with one sisterlocks consultant who seems like she will be a good match. (Random fact: I’ve actually been to her house the year before of an annual natural hair expo in her backyard– though we’ve never officially met!) We had great rapport; her schedule fit my schedule; her price is in line with what I’m comfortable paying for retis… I’m really hoping this works out, though I know I can’t be sure until one or two retightenings in.

Meanwhile, during my initial visit with her, I was curious to see what feedback she had about my hair. All in all her feedback was positive. The following two items stood out to me:

  1. She echoed what #2 said about washing my hair too often. The washing of my hair once (often more than that!) a week, is keeping my ends from fully locking. I did go 3 weeks without washing my hair once… but that was by accident.

    and

  2. I mentioned I wash my hair often because a) I sweat a ton when I workout and b) I don’t like dull looking hair. Her response was that from what she could see, the dullness maybe be attributed to a dry scalp and/or build-up from the shampoo I’m using. She suggested that I try a) going back to the SL starter shampoo and b) doing ACV rinses every once in a while as a clarifier and to soothe my scalp.

I realized that, for good or bad, I haven’t followed any particular regimen for hair over the past year. I had a lot of starters… but lacked consistent follow through. At least in the beginning of my journey with this new sisterlock consultant, I’m going to try to be a bit more diligent with my hair care. In the short term, I’m committed to trying to go 2 weeks without wet washing my hair and using witch hazel as a wet/dry “shampoo” (and perhaps even the (nearly full) bottle of Taliah Waajid’s Moisture Clenz that I barely used since that first experiment). I need to think more on a long term regimen (that will include re-introducing the ACV + Black Tea rinses) that I can kick off with my first reti with the new consultant.

an update on vitamins

I reviewed the vitamins I was taking with my doctor. Apparently, I was overdosing on vitamin A and E with the combination of multi-vitamin and Nature’s Bounty HSN vitamins that I was taking. Wow. She suggested that I stop taking the HSN immediately, and if I wish, to take a biotin only pill.

I’m switching to Nature Made’s Biotin 2500 mcg. I just purchased a 9 month supply for $20. If nothing else, I will enjoy having longer lashes!

cornrow braid out, new regimen (?)

Monday night was the first I attempted to cornrow my sisterlocks (on my own). Last night I took down the braids and loved the fullness of the look and bounciness of the loose curls.

cornrow braid out Dec 27, 2011

cornrow braid out – front – Dec 27, 2011

For a formalized regimen, I’m thinking…

a) wash hair weekly with diluted Giovanni’s Green Tea Shampoo (Friday/Saturdays)
b) workouts: continue to rock my two ponytails for my gym/Zumba workouts; cornrow my hair back after  high intensity workouts, rinse scalp with water. Leave overnight for braid-out the next day.
c) daily: spritz with water; take hair, skin, nail pills

in need of new regimen, styling tips, and self re-tightening tips

I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas! I sure did. I received a wonderful word from my pastor about how Christmas is a rescue story– one of hope and faith. Not  about gift giving and a baby Jesus.

I digress.

I’ve been thinking a lot about my sisterlocks recently. Particularly, I have been thinking about how I need a new regimen to care for my hair considering how much I work out, my goal to extend the time between retightenings, and the fact that I am now taking hair/nail growth pills.

Exercising: From working out, I get a lot of build up on my scalp. Washing every two weeks isn’t cutting it. I’m definitely increasing my wash schedule to once a week. But I’m concerned that may not cut it either. Today, I am experimenting with rinsing my hair. I did my best to cornrow my hair last night.

Cornrow Attempt-Dec26.2011

Today, I’m working from home and did a quick  rinse focusing on my scalp (using the spray on the kitchen sink) and let my hair airdry (without taking down the braids) . Any suggestions for maintaining sisterlocks with a rigorous exercise routine? I’ve been concerned about all the sweat or frequent washings slowing down the maturing/locking process.

Re-tightenings and Hair Pills: I am more and more curious about learning to self re-tightening– Not my entire head; just the front to keep up a neat appearance. But I am NOT interested in paying $250 to learn. Over the next few weeks, I’ll be doing some internet sleuthing to learn the best way to approach this.

Styling: Finally, I would also like to experiment with styling more.  But, my ends are just so darn fuzzy and soft, that I’m concerned any curls would look like a dry half curled ‘fro. I’ve said it before, and at risk of sounding like a broken record, I’ll say it again… once my fuzzy ends mature into locs, I’m confident I’ll have more styling options. (My wedding day hair looked gorgeous, but I’m concerned about manipulating my hair to that extent too frequently.) Today, for about an hour, I considered purchasing Nappy-N-Happy’s Sea Salt Spray Loc Accelerator… but I couldn’t bring myself to click the purchase button. Anyone sisterlock’d sistas use that product with success? Any other advice for styling despite the fuzzy ends? 

My first wash as a natural.

Last night I experienced my first wash as a natural.

How did it go? So, so.

I combed through my hair (to ensure all the twists were unraveled.

I decided to pre-poo for an hour with a banana/ mayo/olive oil smoothie and plastic cap. I clearly ignored all comments that banana bits will remain in my hair despite how long and fast I blend. I think I got all the bits out eventually…………… or maybe not… just saying.

I then applied the Garnier Fructis Triple Nutrition conditioner on top and comb through my hair once more before rinsing. I tried to rinse well, but, like I said… banana bits. I then reapplied the conditioner and let it sit under the plastic cap while I showered.

After rinsing out the conditioner, I towel-dried my hair and applied the Garnier Fructis Sleek & Shine Leave-In, followed by my new whipped shea butter.

My original plan was to do fat, two strand twists all over my head… but for one reason or another, I decided to try to flat twist my hair. I was able to do two flat twists on either side of my head and then two-strand twist (about 9 or so) down the middle section. Before twisting my hair, I applied ORS Twist N Loc gel to my strands (spritzing my hair as I go to keep it wet for twisting.) I spritzed with ORS Nature’s Shine before going to bed.

Please do not ask what style I was going for. I really have no idea. I just wanted to get my hair twisted up somehow. It took me about 2 hours just to do 4 flat twists… and I just couldn’t grip the hair in the center of my hair to flat twist. I think my hair much be really coily there, doesn’t want to stretch.

Anyways, today, I rocked a tam to work and only unraveled the twists at the crown.

Twist Out at Front_April 9

I like how the double twists came out in that section.  Sorry for the lame camera phone photo but I am unable to upload photos from my real camera.

I hope when I unravel the flat twist and the rest of the twists tomorrow, my hair looks semi-decent with all the different types of curls/waves going on from the different twisting techniques.