Keeping my hair stretched!

It’s been almost 5 months since my “big chop” after 11 months of transitioning, and I’ve learned quite a bit. Of course moisturizing is super important, and so is protective styling. I don’t really wash in sections. For me, it’s just quicker if I wash the fro, then detangle. I imagine as it gets longer, I will shift to sections.

There is one thing, however, that has saved my hair life, keeping it stretched. As of now, banding is my go-to method. I read about banding in The Science of Black Hair by Audrey Davis-Sivasothy (and I’m sure in a few blogs/youtube videos as well), and I gave it a try a couple of months ago, and it has been one of my best hair decisions, by far!

Banding is stretching the hair using scrunchies/ponytail holders. You secure one at the root, and continue along the length of the hair, securing the final ponytail holder at the ends.

I allow my hair to air dry in the banding method for 30-60 mins after putting in my leave-in (currently using Shea Moisture Restorative Conditioner) and sealing with Hot Six Oil (plus a little Tea Tree oil). It looks crazy (my fiancee gets quite the laugh in lol), but it works!

Hair banding pics

Hair banding pics

Hair banding pics

Hair banding pics

Hair banding pics

Hair banding pics

Once dry (or close enough), I add my cream (Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie), then proceed with styling, which is either two strand twists or flat twists.

Throughout the week to keep my hair stretched, I do large bantu-knots at night. I’m talking like 8-9 total. In the morning, it never looks like I styled it lol, but it does keep it stretched after I’ve moisturized it for the night. When I wake up, I’m able to wear a larger, fuller afro puff. I love it!

Here’s a photo of my stretched fro as of December. I wish I had a pic of a non-stretched fro, but I don’t dare let my hair air dry without stretching lol, so try to use your imagination :). I do, however, have a picture of my fro back in August when I first cut off my relaxed ends. I admit it’s not a fair comparison, since I’ve had a couple inches of growth since August, but I’m including it anyways 🙂

By the way, I still don’t use any heat on my hair.

Sorry for the rough pic lol (Aug. '12 Fro)

Sorry for the rough pic lol (Aug. ’12 Fro)

Stretched + a couple inches of growth (Dec. fro)

Stretched + a couple inches of growth (Dec. ’12 Fro)

Cheers,

~TS

Scalp irritation from hair pins?

This is a quick post, and more of a question that anything. But I recently had my hair in a protective style (sorry, forgot to take pics!) for about a week. When I took it down, my scalp was so irritated where I secured my hair with bobby pins. It was a simple roll and tuck style, and I noticed my scalp itched quite a bit, but I was not prepared for the redness and irritation that I felt for the next couple of days when I took it down.

Anyone ever experience anything like this?

It was difficult to keep my scalp oiled because of the style, so maybe this had a lot to do with it (?)

Since taking it down, I’ve been wearing my hair in flat twists with my beanie (no hair pins!), and I feel my scalp healing, but man, what happened?!?!

~TS

Back to what I know: Flat Twist Out!

During my 11 months of transitioning from relaxed to natural hair, the flat twist out was my go-to style (see this pics as examples). Putting the flat twists in took me 20-30 mins (yes, I’m a little slow lol), and I loved the definition and volume my hair illustrated when I took the twists out. When I first went natural, I found it more difficult to flat twist my shorter hair, and I couldn’t get the same level of definition. My hair is a little longer now, and although I’m still not at the same level of definition as when I transitioning (which makes sense since then I was dealing with relaxed hair), I finally achieved a flat twist out worth wearing out 🙂

Flat twist out (front)

Flat twist out (front)

Flat twist out (left side)

Flat twist out (left side)

Flat twist out (right side)

Flat twist out (right side)