Blending My Nazuri Curls: Step 1

Hi guys!

Apologies for the post that went up earlier in the day. I had to take it down as it wasn’t quite finished yet. Blogging has been a little less convenient in recent times but there’s so much we have to share with you guys so please hang in there with us!

I’m wearing a sew-in weave at the moment. The hair is from Nazuri Curls, in their Afro texture (formerly known as the Afro Kinky Curly). I loved it last year and I still love it now. Last year I wore it really big for the most part as I was pretty much my own boss. But now, I have to look “professional”, “fit and proper” and as a rookie in the game, the last and truly the least (for now) I just have to respect myself and conform. So instead of fixing two and a half (or more) bundles as I did last time, I used under two bundles.

Courts officially go on vacation today, so in celebration, I added a little more hair to the front. Let the shakara continue! lol

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I’m not sad, I promise lol

But in the first two weeks, I tried to keep it real, and make the weave look super ordinary, like it were my hair.

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Elevator Selfie!

More about this later.

Blending is an art, sisters and brothers. Not always easy but definitely worth the trouble. This hair originally came in Color 4.

While Color 4 was the colour of my hair when relaxed, it has become darker on my natural hair journey.

Because I was leaving a lot of hair out, I decided to dye the curls. I used 2 boxes of the Creme of Nature with Argan Oil dye in Intense Black.

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My natural hair is dark most times but it is not Intense Black. I later saw a Soft Black shade of the same dye, maybe that would have been closer to home. But whatever, really- this sha brought the extensions closer to my hair colour than the previous Colour 4.

So. The dye job. How did this go?

1. I laid old newspapers on the floor, and then polythene/plastic bags over them.

2. The hair was already nice and clean and mostly detangled. Remember I made a wig with it that didn’t turn out perfect? I dismantled the wig and laid the hair out on nylon bags.

3. Mixed the dye according to instructions. Pretty simple. I poured the Creme into the applicator bottle containing the developer. After shaking well, I was ready to apply immediately. 

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4. I applied the dye by streaking the extensions with it like so:

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5. After doing this, I used my hands (gloved) to smooth it into the extensions. When I was satisfied, I put the hair into a Ziploc bag.

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*repeat till all hair covered*

6. The instructions said to leave for 30 minutes, but I had to leave the dye on for one hour. Why? I originally bought just one box of dye lol and had to run out to buy another when I Realised my mistake. It was all good, after all it’s not like the dye was anywhere near my scalp. 

7. Still following the instructions, I shampooed the hair. This stops the bleeding. At first I just rinsed the dye off but the colour kept running. 

8. Then, I conditioned the hair with Hello Hydration and returned it to another Ziploc bag to soak in the moisture for thirty minutes. 

9. Rinsed conditioner out with cool water, moisturised and sealed with my Cantu leave-in & Carol’s Daughter Mimosa Hair Honey (a pomade) 

10. Hung hair on hangers to dry. Fin. 

End result: black curls! IMG_5070

This took me about 3 hours in all (minus air drying time) though I’d definitely have been faster if I didn’t have to leave to go buy more dye.

I got the dyes from a supermarket in my area for 1,200 naira each. This particular brand I’ve seen retailing between 900 and 1200. It’s pretty common, don’t let anybody swindle you.

Remember. From now till October 12, 2015 you can get 10% off your Nazuri Curls purchases with the discount code: KINKANDI

Love,

AB,

xx

Let’s Talk: Going Natural With Bae

Hello people!

How is the going going? Let’s gist today. 🙂

Last week, I saw this video on facebook. It’s called ‘The Natural Hair Song’, a parody of Breezy’s ‘Don’t Judge Me’. You should watch it. A guy sees his girlfriend after her spontaneous big chop and he just can’t take it. And so it begins: “Where the fuck is your hair? Where the fuck is your hair…”

I thought it was hilarious. I laughed plenty and proceeded to tag my friends. For starters, the guy’s blonde wig. LOL. Now I’ve thought about the video since then, and the first thing that came to me was: If I’d seen it like two years ago when I was transitioning or after my big chop, it would not have been as funny. I’d probably have gone on a tirade somewhere. Blog, twitter, real life, some place sha.

In the 2004 romcom, ‘Breaking All The Rules’, Morris Chestnut was infatuated with Gabrielle Union. He was describing her to his friends and one of the things he kept going on about was her gorgeous long hair. She got a pixie cut, and when Jamie Foxx (a friend of Morris) met her, he did not even know she was the one, because she couldn’t be- you know, Morris’ girl was the one with the hair. Anyway, the funny thing was, Morris was so attached to her hair that as she was getting it cut at the salon, he felt jolts in his body with every snip, but did not know what exactly was happening. Haha.

One thing we can all agree on is generally speaking, hair means a lot to us black people, in Africa and the diaspora. So, for the purpose of this post, can we ignore that little voice trying to say “It’s just hair”, nope, not today. People have divorced over toothpaste and lesser things, and one woman’s husband did suggest a divorce because of her hair. Yes, read about it here.

This is a topic I avoid (natural hair and relationships), but today I want to hear your thoughts. I’ve never thought about asking a guy to air his views on natural hair (except his own) on the blog simply because, I firmly believe that however they feel, is for their pocket. It doesn’t really matter in the general assessment of things.

However, that’s a big broad stroke. Getting specific about our individual lives, we share the things we love with the people we care about. So, what about when bae isn’t excited about this new change in your life? I big chopped when I was ready, but it was encouraging in a little way, that my then love interest absolutely LOVED that I was going natural. His own natural locs were a great inspiration for me too.

I want to hear from you in the comments- have you been in this situation? What did you do, what you would do? But first, my 2 cents:

1. In trying to be understanding, think about it this way:

What if bae decided to come back one day with relaxed hair in a ponytail? What if bae came to see you one day and he has changed his look to something you really can’t process e.g. he goes blonde and looks like the guy in the video, and not Chris Brown. Or even dyes his hair silver (or was it grey? or white?) like Sisqo.

Honestly speaking, I won’t call you shallow if you feel just a teeny bit less attracted to him. For me sha, don’t play that kind of rough play if we aren’t deep in our feelings yet, it could be the beginning of the end. ( ._.)

Now, I know you’re going to say that this analogy is crazy and does not apply because you’re simply RETURNING TO natural, where it all began! Embracing your roots, being who you’re supposed to be!! Of course. But does he know this? Does he understand? Sure, you can call it sad, being anti-black, self-loathing on some level (so many essays on the subject) but can you really blame him? The way the world is set up, all the conditioning the black race was put through for centuries- and is still being conditioned today… It’s not such a surprise. For years you have relaxed your hair. If you’re like me, you tossed and turned over the idea for almost 2 years before you finally took the plunge. I’m saying. You know now, what you did not know before. AND, you’re the one who just made, or is making a change. People don’t really like change, it takes some getting used to. Give him time to process this. Patience.

2. Talk about it.

A lot of people do not understand why people go natural. Like why? What are your reasons? You’re going to get questioned a lot. At the market, at work, at school- you don’t owe them any explanation, but take some time to share with him, because you care. Whether it’s a simple “I just feel like it” or a 7 page essay about finding yourself, share. Show pictures of naturalistas that inspire you. Give him the chance to see it how you see it.

In all this talk, I think it’s important for me to state here that I am not saying you should ask permission before you go natural, or you should ask bae to ratify your decision after you have taken it. It is YOUR hair, on YOUR head. You will do what YOU want with it. You’re just trying to help absorb the shock a little. It’s a journey, one of life’s journeys, and you’d be happy to take him with you.

Maybe it’s the fact that for us kinkier types, we have gone centuries not knowing, or not remembering that our hair can grow, maybe that’s why for us long hair is such an achievement, or positive attribute. But we should note that, most people aren’t REALLY averse to all natural hair, it’s the idea of short hair that worries them. (This is a topic for another day- how length “validates” the journey, in some eyes)

3. Also, I think there should be boundaries.

The video was a parody and really should be just that. If the things he said were repeated in real life, the girl would/ should not have been pleading with him to understand.

We can’t choose our family, but we can choose our friends- and we can definitely choose who we want to be romantically involved with. Family will tease you, but they cannot disown you (lol, jk. They love you and will eventually get used to and love your new hair). Friends may tease you but in a while, they may follow your lead. On one of my bad hair days last month- a really wonky twist out, my mother told me that the sight turned her belly. LOL. Now, from my mom, that meant nothing. It was just her being my frank mother, no malice in there. However, I cannot let any bae talk to me like that, except he has Tourettes or Aspergers- and I don’t think you should, either.

4. Finally, be willing to let go.

If your person stops wanting to be seen in public with you because of your Teeny Weeny Afro or starter locs (it happens!), If after some time, your hair is still an issue, I think you should keep it moving. He is entitled to his opinion but you don’t have to deal with it. He doesn’t have to deal with your hair either. You should not be liked or loved or found attractive “despite your hair”. NO. It should be one of the reasons why you’re special, why you’re beautiful, or your hair should be a non-issue <- that is, he doesn’t care either way. Your hair should NOT be a downside.

If your relationship can’t handle your going natural, then why hold on to it? I’m just thinking out loud here. And this is about actual relationships. If you’re worried about how potential bae will find your hair, girrrrrrrrl I don’t think you should bother.

Present bae did not dig my fro at first when he was potential bae but he grew to love it. Who knows, he may not have come to talk to me if he had seen it (I was wearing kinky twists) but now, he is a fro spotter, and always tells me when he sees kinky sistas, referring to them as my, or our clan members. LOL. Good for him because this hair would have been a deal breaker. *warrior pose*

Going natural, returning to natural is a personal journey. You hear naturalistas call this a journey, but it really is. You will soon understand. One you should embark on for YOURSELF, and nobody else. But, to soothe your worries, there are 7 billion people in the world, 140 million people in Nigeria, about 20 million people in Lagos alone, and I can assure you that there are as many great guys out there who would love your kinky-curly-coils. Don’t let one person hold you back.

I really did not intend to go on for so long. I was just meant to post a quick conversation starter, but here we are. I can’t delete all these words. :p

All in all, I’m advocating for a balanced view. You should do what you want to do with your own hair, but it’s also okay, good, to enlighten him, try to get him on the same page as you. NOT the same thing as seeking permission.

So, let’s talk ladies. What are your views on natural hair in relationships? Is your hair a deal breaker for you? Have you ever been in a situation where “love” made you question your hair choice? Speak on it!

Love,

AB,

xx

P.S. Have you entered the Big Fat Giveaway? Deets over here

Nazuri Curls Detangling Update

Hey lovers!

Last week, I shared my experience with Nazuri Curls Afro Kinky Curly extensions. You can read it over here.

It was all rainbows and butterflies in that post, so after yesterday’s very teek struggle, it’d be unfair if I didn’t come to share this as well. It was a truly deadly day.

I took down my weave on Monday evening.

Right after take down. Looking good, eyy?

Right after take down. Looking good, eyy?

I threw it into a bag, planning to attend to it on Tuesday, Washday.

Tuesday arrived. Somewhere during my fro’s henna treatment, I washed the extensions with sulfate free shampoo. I generously rubbed my Deep Conditioner of the day (man shanu, more about this later) over the hair and wrapped it in two plastic bags, leaving it to deep condition overnight.

So, Wednesday afternoon, after waking up from my long off-and-on Independence Day sleep, I went to rinse the man shanu out of my weave with conditioner. Imagine my wonderment when I noticed all the meshing and matting going on. Man shanu has very good slip, by the way. Continue reading

Hair Review: Nazuri Curls Afro Kinky Curly Extensions

Hello lovelies!

I hope all is well with you and your tresses!

My hair is enjoying the last days of its protective styling vacay. I’ve been having a pretty fun time with my weave, Big Betty. To be honest, I haven’t really missed my hair that much (don’t judge me!). I saw a very lush twist out on Instagram last week though, and have been pining for my hair ever since. Big Betty will be taken down this Friday, but I believe a full review is due. It’s a long, thorough one, so please stay with me.

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Nazuri Curls Afro Kinky Curly

Nazuri Curls is a company owned by two best friends. They currently offer hair in 4 textures- Curly, Kinky-Curly, Afro Kinky Curly and Kinky Straight. I chose the Afro Kinky Curly because it is the closest to my hair texture, and I got three bundles- 12”, 14” and 16”.

You can read my First Impressions from a month ago over here. As I said in that post, I like big hair, that’s why I got 3 bundles. I did not finish all of it, I have a little left untouched, so if you’re considering getting just 2 bundles, you should be fine.

In my first impressions post, I expressed excitement over the fullness, softness and beauty of the hair. Now it has been four weeks and three days since I installed the weave and I still feel the same.

Continue reading

AB Loves: Midas Naturals Whipped Shea Butter

P.S. The packaging is different now

P.S. This was just a sample. The Midas Naturals label is different now.

Hey Guys!

Recently, I got to try product samples from a new organic hair product line, Midas Naturals. I loved the Whipped Shea Butter so much! ❤ Midas Naturals is a UK based company, but I’m proud to say that it is owned by a Nigerian. 🙂

Ingredients:

Aqua, organic shea butter (butyrospermum parkii), avocado oil (persea grattissima), coconut oil (cocos nucifera), emulsifying wax NF (cetearyl alcohol & polysorbate 60), olive oil (olea europaea), crambe seed oil (abyssinica), organic palm oil (elaeis guineenis), stearic acid, xanthan gum, phenoxyethanol, vanilla cream fragrance oil.

Worth noting: Water is its first ingredient, and this is humectant free.

Shea butter, water and easily absorbable oils are the soul of this, with other ingredients to hold everything together. Continue reading