Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Product Review: Obia Curl Moisture Cream (The Braiding Files #1)

Price:  $18 for 8 oz

Ingredients:  Purified Water, Behentrimonium Methosulfate and Cetearyl Alcohol, Grapeseed Oil, Vegetable Glycerin, Olive Oil, Argan oil, Gluconolactone and Sodium Benzoate, Burdock Root, Lavender Oil, Coconut Oil, Soybean Oil, Vitamin E, Aloe Vera Oil, Fragrance.

Promise:  From the website - This specially formulated leave-in conditioner is full of luxurious oils that will seal in moisture and condition your hair. The star ingredient is antioxidant rich Argan Oil that is known for providing intense moisture.  Plus it is packed with Grape seed Oil, Olive Oil, Burdock Root and Vitamin E that will strengthen, add shine, smooth and promote hair growth.  pH balanced Curl Moisture Cream seals in moisture and minimizes frizz by smoothing and closing the cuticle.

Scent: Not sure

Consistency:  Thin Cream

Results:   I’ve used an entire jar of this stuff and I was pretty consistent in the products that I paired this with, but I still got differing results.  For example, most of the time, I did not get any sheen from this product, and it left my hair looking dull.  However, a couple times, I did get sheen.  Also, most of the time, it left my hair very moisturized, but there were a few times that it made my hair hard.  I did notice that sometimes, when my hair got hard, it was because I tried to use this product as a moisturizer in between washes, so it was building up on my strands.  It is rich in some really great oils, but my hair cannot take a lot of oil, especially not coconut oil.  This is also the reason it took 8+ hours for this product to absorb into my hair.  For all these reasons, I can’t call this my holy grail of braiding/twisting creams.  I need a product that I can count on, and I would like a little more sheen in the process

Love it, Like it or Leave It:  Like It
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Sunday, December 27, 2015

Braiding Challenge

Hey, beautiful people!  With Michigan winter fully in gear, I put my wash n' go challenge on hold and put my hair into hiding, typically in braids.  I tried twists, and they just don't give my hair the same definition.  Also, I have to be careful because my is also fine, so it break easily with too much tension.

Right now, my regimen is to:
1.  Deep condition my hair overnight
2.  Shampoo as needed
3.  Detangle with rinse-out conditioner
4.  Add leave-in conditioner, light oil and styling cream
5.  Braid my hair

During the week, I typically keep my hair in two crown braids, with the last inch of hair at the nape of my neck cornrowed in a separate braid.  I intend to test out a number of the twist creams in my hair to determine which ones leave my hair with the most moisture, sheen and definition.

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Saturday, December 26, 2015

Favorites of 2015

Hey, beautiful people!  It's that time of year again for my favorites list.  I already did my favorite deep conditioners and wash n' go gels at the end of those challenges, but I'll re-post them again.  I'm listing my product categories in the order that I use them and in order of preference.  I am posting the regular prices for these products, but I typically buy my products on sale (20-40% off).

Deep Conditioners:

  1. Herbal Essence Long Term Relationship ($4 for 10 oz)
  2. Herbal Essence Totally Twisted ($4 for 10 oz)
  3. Garnier Fructis Hydra Recharge ($4 for 13 oz)
Leave-in Conditioners / Daily Moisturizers:
  1. Silk Dreams Wheat Germ Butter Conditioner ($16 for 16 oz)
  2. Oyin Handmade Hair Dew ($23 for 16.9 oz)
  3. Koils by Nature Moisturizing Shealoe Leave-in Conditioner ($20 for 12 oz) 
  4. Curl Junkie Curl Assurance Smoothing Lotion (summer only) ($25 for 12 oz)
Oils/Daily Spritz Mix-ins:
  1. Now Foods Avocado Oil ($14 for 16 oz)
  2. Essential Depot Vegetable Glycerin (summer only) ($13 for 43 oz)
  3. Tropic Isle Living Jamaican Black Castor Oil ($7 for 4 oz)
  4. Now Foods Peppermint Essential Oil ($7 for 1 oz)
Wash n Go Stylers:
  1. Camille Rose Curl Maker ($22 for 12 oz)
  2. Uncle Funky’s Daughter Curly Magic ($25 for 18 oz)
  3. As I Am Curling Jelly ($22 for 16 oz)
Braid and Twist Creams:
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Friday, December 25, 2015

Product Review: Battle of the Silk Dreams Moisturizers

Hey, beautiful people!  One of my favorite deep conditioner product lines this year is Silk Dreams Hair Care, so I decided to try a couple of her moisturizers -- the Wheat Germ Butter Conditioner and the Mocha Silk Hair Milk.  While the Wheat Germ Butter is labeled a conditioner, her website said that it could also be used as a leave-in.  I tried both bottles until I used them both up, sometimes using just one, and sometimes putting one product on one side of my head and the other product on the other side.

Price:  The Wheat Germ Butter Conditioner wins.  It is 8 oz. for $10 or 16 oz. for $16.   The Mocha Silk Hair Milk is 8 oz. for $12.

Ingredients:  This one was a close call for me, so I’m calling it a tie.   Both have amazing ingredients, and both have a nice protein.

    • Wheat Germ Butter Conditioner - Water, Behentrimonium Methosulfate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Wheat Germ Butter, Avocado Oil, Polyquaternium 7, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Panthenol, Germall Plus, Fragrance

    • Mocha Silk Hair Milk - Water, Coconut Milk, Behentrimonium Methosulfate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Palm Kernel Oil, Cupuacu Butter, Cocoa Butter, Avocado Oil, Hydroxypropyltrimonium Honey, Quaternium-79 Hydrolyzed Silk Protein, Polyquaternium-7, Panthenol, Germall Plus, Fragrance

Scent:  The Mocha Silk wins for me because it has a light chocolate scent.  The Wheat Germ did not smell like much of anything to me.

Results:  The Wheat Germ Butter Conditioner wins for my hair, though they are both great.  They both kept my hair moisturized for days and they both have this nice consistency of a thick lotion, but the Wheat Germ Butter left my hair feeling a little bit softer.  However, I think the Capuacu Butter and the Cocoa Butter combined in the Mocha Silk Hair Milk were just too much.  I have to be careful with heavier butters on my hair.  Also, the Wheat Germ Butter left my hair feeling conditioned when I washed it out on wash day, probably because it is also designed to be a conditioner.

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Sunday, December 6, 2015

Wash n Go Recap 2015

Hey, beautiful people!  As you may remember, over the summer, I wanted to try out a a number of gels to determine the best wash n go combination for my hair.  I tried quite a few, and posted 10 results to my wash day series.  As much as I wanted to love Eco Styler because it is cheap, I couldn’t make it work because it was just too thick.  I learned that my hair loves runny gels that are snot like in consistency.  While I can do conditioner only or a cream-based styler for my wash n go, I don’t get the same hang time.  Here are the top 4 wash n go gels that worked best for me, based on the way my hair looked, price and on-the-ground availability:

  1. Uncle Funky’s Daughter Curly Magic
  2. Camille Rose Curl Maker
  3. As I Am Curling Jelly
  4. Kinky Curly Curling Custard

My results with Camille Rose and Uncle Funky's Daughter were very similar.  While I like Uncle Funky's Daughter a little more, Camille Rose is available on the ground.  Kinky Curly gave me good results, but it also left a very sticky residue.  I hated having wet hair on any part of my skin when I used Kinky Curly. 

Next summer, I think I am going to try a few more gels because the product junkie in me won’t let me be.  Next up on my list to try:

Which stylers do you use for your wash n go?

Note:  This post was edited on 12/20/2015 to add another gel that I want to try, and updated on 6/15/2017 to change the order of #1 and #2.  I noticed that the Uncle Funky's Daughter Curly Magic has a longer shelf life than the Camille Rose Curl Maker.  Over time, the Curl Maker becomes more sticky/tacky, and it is harder to rake through.  I do not have that problem with the Curly Magic.

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Low Maintenance vs. Protective Styling

Hey, beautiful people.  With winter fully here, I thought now is good time to talk about protective styling vs. low manipulation styling.  A style can be both protective and low manipulation, which is why the two terms are frequently confused, but they are not the same thing.

  • Low manipulation refers to styles that require minimum styling, and require little maintenance during the week.  Low maintenance styles tend to be "set it and forget it" styles.  This would include wash n gos, certain updos, and bunning.  Braid outs/twist outs are only low manipulation if you don't have to frequently re-braid/twist.

  • Protective styling refers to styles that hide your hair, particularly your ends, to protect it from the elements.  This would include updos, bunning, braids, twists.  It would also include wigs.

For some people, especially those with fine hair, like me, low manipulation styles may be better than protective styles because frequent manipulation of the hair can lead to breakage.  On the other hand, for some, protective styles are better because their ends are easily damaged.

Thus, far, I've found that my hair likes low manipulation styles.  However, in the winter time, it prefers styles that are both low manipulation and protective because my hair stays better moisturized that way.  I live in Michigan where the winters are very cold and dry.

As a word of caution, with both low manipulation and protective styles, you have to be careful about tangling.  If your hair is in a loose, low maintenance style, it may tangle.  For example, I typically get tangles with my wash n go if I am not careful in applying gel to the curlier sections.  Also, if my hair is left in a protective style for too long, like braids or twists, then it may tangle.  Obviously, with both types of styles, you have to continue to maintain moisture levels.

What types of styles does your hair prefer?
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