Why Hot Water is Essential

While prepping up my hair for a wash today, I had time to reflect on some of the practices and changes I’ve made to my hair. The most frequent question I’m asked at the salon is “Aunty, do you prefer cold or hot water to wash your hair”?

Over the years, I haven’t had the desire to probe why this question is often asked at most Naija hair salon till I began the quest for healthy, long relaxed hair. When I commenced my journey, I often used cool water to wash my hair. This I did continuously for a year before evaluating what was working in my regimen.

A common feature of a typical wash day is the 1hour prepoo session, consisting of a protein deep conditioner and a mix of several natural oils. Using cold water will not get rid of the product buildup and once my hair is dry, I often have this coated film over my hair which indicated I was doing something wrong.

Why Hot Water is Essential: An important reason why you need to use hot water when washing your hair is it opens up your hair cuticles. If cold water closes the hair cuticle then hot water opens it up and it needs to be open when you cleanse and condition. Then you can easily remove any dirt, build-up and oils from your hair and be sure that your hair will effectively absorb everything you put in it.

Today, as you prepare to wash and deep condition your hair, never  stray from this basic rule. Incorporate the use of hot water when washing your hair and you’ll see tangible results sooner than you think.

Caution: Always ensure you mix an adequate amount of cold water with the hot water. It should be in a ratio of 60:40 with 60% being hot water and 40% cold water. The thing is that hot water can be quite harmful at times but you also shouldn’t use solely cold water for washing your hair. The best strategy for most ladies would probably be to use warm water instead of hot when shampooing and conditioning. Don’t apply cold water at that point because you want the scalp pores and the hair cuticle to be open.

If you feel like there’s particularly much grease and oil in your hair then you may turn the water from warm to hot in order to really open up everything and get those things out but remember that frequent use of very hot water is damaging and you have to be careful. Use cold water only for your final rinse in order to seal everything after you’re done and remember that it doesn’t have to be ice-cold – choose a temperature that you can tolerate.

Weekend Tools

What are your go to products for the weekend? These are the products I’m using currently to achieve volume, bounce and shine. 

Manetabolism Vitamin Update: Ladies, new stocks have arrived but it’s currently undergoing clearance. You’ll be able to place your orders directly on the website by 9th March, 2015.

Enjoy your weekend!



Popping & Hand in Hair Syndrome 

I’ve got an ongoing nasty habit. On days I wear my hair out, I often have my hand in my hair searching for a split end or single strand knots. Often times, I might not have access to my scissors and end up popping these offending hair shiznits (as I like to call them). The other habit is twirling my hair around my fingers once I’m behind the wheels driving. It’s a bad habit I know, but it’s become a daily ritual and I’m trying to wean myself off the wide path that leads to hair destruction.

To kick this habit to the curb, I’m indulging in some protective styles I came across on Pinterest. I still intend to wear my hair out but by the 2nd half of the day, it’ll end up in a messy bun held up by bobby pins.

To other matters, I’d like to give a special shoutout to a reader on this blog who has gone ahead to establish an online food delivery service within the heart of Calabar. If you’re on vacation or reside and work within this serene city, then it’s time to get your food groove on by placing an order with ‘Dineoutng‘. They’ve got a range of indigenous and international cuisine available.

They also cater for corporate organizations, weddings, bridal showers, baby showers and a whole lot more.

Your Hair Regimen is Working If….

One of the most frequent questions I receive from readers is ‘how do I know if my hair regimen is working’. That’s easy peasy. We have identified the following things to lookout for a successful hair journey.

1. Breakage: this is the bane of African hair. Due to the dry nature of our hair, it’s often prone to breakage if you’re not abiding by the principles of weekly deep conditioning sessions using heat. Once you get the hang of deep conditioning with a protein or moisturizing deep conditioner, you’ll observe minimal breakage.

2. Thicker hair: we’re all familiar with over processed hair caused by relaxer run-off. This leads to thinning, brittle hair over time. Relaxer run-off occur during the retouch session if you do not take care to coat your previously relaxed hair with Jamaican Black Castor Oil & Vaseline.

Coating your relaxed hair with these two items acts as a barrier against the damaging effects of relaxer when your stylist is rinsing out the relaxer from your hair. If you absolutely hate the brownish, dull hue you see on previously relaxed hair, then it’s time to get rid of this by coating your hair whenever you go for relaxer touch up.

3. Thicker ends: yes it’s hard to let go of length when you’re gunning for a whole lot more. However, the best thing you can do for your hair at the start of your journey is to critically asses your ends. You want to get rid of split ends, mid shaft splits, thin, straggly ends and single strand knots. Get a pair of brand new scissors. Divide your hair into small sections and trim away. If you do this at the start of your journey, you’ll be able to observe changes to your hair in the long run.

4. Healthy, Stronger hair: if you’re consistent with making these changes to your hair, 2-3months down the line, you’ll observe a change in hair texture. Gone are the days of dry, crinkly hair. Welcome to your best hair days.

Reader’s Q&A

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Q: Can I leave protein deep conditioner on my hair overnight?
A: It depends on your deep conditioning preferences. Some ladies prefer deep conditioning overnight while others opt for an hour. Research indicates that within 30minutes, your hair cuticles will be raised to absorb the amount of protein adequate for your hair needs. 30 minutes – an hour is adequate enough for your hair. If you want better penetration, try and lay your hands on this heat cap which takes your deep conditioning sessions to another level.

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Always remember to follow up with a moisturizing deep conditioner afterwards. For instance, you can prepoo with a protein deep conditioner for an hour; shampoo your hair in sections then proceed to use a moisturizing deep conditioner.

Q: Does rinsing a scalp affected by Alopecia with Lipton promote hair growth?
A: If you’ve got Alopecia, tea rinsing is not the way to go. What you’ll require is a bottle of JBCO, Rosemary essential oil, Lavender essential oil & Peppermint essential oil. You’ll need to mix these 4 ingredients together in measured doses. Store this oil mix for a week before commencing usage.

Have a splendid week ahead!!!

Product Review – Natrol Biotin Chewable

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I was introduced to this brand of Biotin Chewable during my hair assessment with Stevie. She advised me to get it as it’ll aid my new hair regimen. I was a bit skeptical cos I’ve always been lazy when it comes to popping pills but she’d assured me this will be different since I’ll only be required to take one pill daily. Furthermore, it was available in a sweet strawberry flavor and easily dissolves without drinking water.

She told me to get the 5,000mcg and 10,000mcg jars. She’d advised I start off with the 5,000mcg and if I love the results, then I should switch to the 10,000mcg jar provided I’d exhausted the first jar. Off to the store she recommended and I got both jars.

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I commenced usage by mid-November with the jar of 5,000mcg and dutifully popped one pill at night before going to bed. True to her words, it was like popping Vitamin C and it made it easier. When I shared my concern about possible breakouts and stuffs, Stevie had laughed away and stated there won’t be such episodes.
My Observations:
* Easy to swallow as it dissolves easily.
* I was going to the toilet 2ce daily for No. 2 which I never missed since I commenced usage.
* By November ending, I observed my clothes were loose and I needed to take in my jeans.
* My nails grew like crazy.
* My skin has remained clear and there have been no breakout incidents.
* For the very first time, my eyelashes were popping as I noticed more growth in that area.
I compared notes with my younger sister who commenced usage at the same time and noticed that she’d lost 10kg within 2weeks of usage. During my monthly Skype chats with Stevie, I had casually mentioned that I was losing weight and she affirmed that this brand of biotin actually processes your food intake which increases your metabolism leading to weight loss. She further asked if I’ve been going to the toilet frequently and my answer was a big fat ‘YES’.
You might be wondering what happened to my hair with all these wonderful results. Yes, I got growth and it’s the kind of growth I usually get within a 6month stretch cos I got an inch each month as can be seen from the picture below:

IMG_2541 I also went online to check if there were ladies who had recorded growth and this was what I saw:

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These are some of the pictures I saw online and it cuts across racial divides but the reviews are largely positive. So I’m onto a good thing and will be ending my 16week stretch by next week.
I’ve been quite diligent with my new regimen and the results are paying off.