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by Jensine from youtube.com/junglenaps

In the 11 years that I’ve been natural, I’ve been able to successfully enjoy straightening my hair without heat damage. I attribute my success to the following tips :

(1) CLARIFY
Using a clarifying shampoo that will completely remove any product build up from your hair is a MUST. Your results will turn out much better when you start with a, “clean slate.”

2) PROTEIN TREATMENT
I love to use a protein treatment in the week leading up to straightening my hair. It helps to fortify my hair strands against manipulation and results in less breakage.

3) HEAT PROTECTANT
Yes, we all know about this one. But, in addition to using a heat protectant prior to blow drying your hair, you can also use one right before you apply your flat iron. I find that using a heat protectant twice helps my curls bounce back.

4) INVEST IN A QUALITY FLAT IRON
Not all flat irons are created equal. I have read so many horror stories of $40 flat irons inducing heat damage. It was enough to have me do some deep research and invest in a quality flat iron. A good flat iron will result in less passes through each section which translates to a lower probability of heat damage. You will definitely notice a difference.

5) LIMIT HEAT
Now don’t go getting heat happy. Remember that for your hair to stay its healthiest, it’s best to limit heat usage to once a month. Allow your hair sufficient time to recover from heat application and show it some love with a good deep conditioning session.

To see all these tips in action, watch the tutorial below!




by Kanisha Parks of ShesSaved.com

In the natural hair community, there’s a lot of emphasis placed on getting healthy hair, growing long hair, and retaining length. All too often, we tend to think the answer is a certain product, vitamin, or “grow hair overnight” scheme, when it isn’t.

I’ve been natural for about six years now and in the beginning, there was a lot of trial and error involved: emphasis on error. I wanted my hair to grow long and healthy but I wasn’t equipping myself with the three habits necessary to get it there. You don’t need an arsenal of products, 10,000 tools, or even a personal hair stylist. You can grow long, healthy, strong, and beautiful hair, no matter your starting point or texture. Start implementing these habits and your hair will prosper!
1. GAIN UNDERSTANDING.

When you decide to grow your own hair, the first step is to learn about natural hair AND your own hair, because it is unique from any other head of hair you will encounter. It’s good to know about natural hair in general, but if you never examine your own waves, curls, kinks, and/or coils, you won’t be able to handle them properly. You should take the time to really do your research so that you won’t waste time buying products that aren’t suitable for your hair or creating habits that are ultimately just a waste of time.

When I first went natural, I spent hours on YouTube and hair blogs, just immersing myself in natural hair, which was something I didn’t even know was a “thing.” At the time, there wasn’t nearly as much information available as there is now, so your task actually quite easy! But you must also realize that you have to eat the meat and throw away the bone. Every tip isn’t one you should acquire, and with time, you’ll find your groove.

You’ll quickly see that there are many methods, routines, and regimens out there but you’ll find that everything isn’t good for your hair/lifestyle. Me, personally? I’ve learned that for my hair and lifestyle, it’s best to just keep it simple. I wash my hair once a week, following up with conditioning, and then deep conditioning with heat for 30 minutes. During the summer my hair is almost always in a bun, which I take down 2-3 times a week to moisturize and give my hair a break. Every other month, I install box braids to give myself a break from styling. This routine has helped me retain 2 inches of growth this summer, and it’s all because I spent time learning what is good for my hair.

2. GET DEDICATED.

You say you want long and healthy hair, but what are you doing about it? A few years ago I called myself getting serious about my hair journey, but I was still doing things to counteract any progress I was making, such as: using too much heat, neglecting my hair, leaving protective styles in for too long, not deep conditioning, not moisturizing, etc.

Once you gain understanding, you’ll know exactly what you need to do to grow healthy hair, including: following a regimen, refraining from damaging hair practices like excessive heat and over-manipulation, deep conditioning regularly, maintaining a good diet, and drinking lots of water. But do you do it?
If you’re still learning, don’t be afraid to try but just know that retaining length is going to take some sort of effort. The amount of effort depends on the person. My hair tends to be prone to split ends so I have to be very cautious and watchful of anything that will hinder me from retaining length, like slacking on my regimen or handling my hair too harshly.

Ultimately, if you really want long and healthy hair, you’ll do what it takes to achieve it. It doesn’t take all of your time and a boatload of money to do it. Truly, being dedicated will take you farther than any hair product or miracle growth oil ever will.

3. BE CONSISTENT.

Now that you’re equipped with the knowledge and are really ready to put your best foot forward, consistency is all you need. There were many times in my hair journey when I made significant progress but I found myself growing weary, getting antsy, or was just tired of trying. Right when my hair was on the cusp of greatness, I would resort back to my bad habits because it was just easier.

Sometimes you have to tell yourself no! So if you’re committed to refraining from heat for six months, don’t let yourself give in at month three. Don’t skip a week of deep conditioning or allow yourself any room for excuses. At times you may feel like it’s “not that big of a deal” but if long and healthy hair is your goal, consistency is essential because it takes time to see lasting results. It’ll take some discipline, but it will also be well worth it.

As with anything in life, the more you put in, the more you get out. So if your hair isn’t where you want it, just know that it can get there! It’s up to you. So learn what you’re doing wrong, get serious about what you need to change, and just stick with it. You’ll get there!


glam idol, Alesha!
by Michelle of Radiant-Brown-Beauty

Hello ladies,

Below are twenty-seven things you can do to improve the health of your hair and keep it from shedding prematurely or breaking off. The Goal? To keep your hair on your head!

Not including the obvious elimination of chemical treatments, this comprehensive list contains all you need to maintain a healthy head of hair. They are categorized by care/maintenance and styling. 
Care and Maintenance
  1. Nix shampoos with sulfates. It doesn’t matter if you hair is natural or relaxed. Sulfates strip the hair of needed moisture and natural oils.
  2. Pre-poo (pre-shampoo) your hair with coconut oil or olive oil. Coconut oil helps hair retain its moisture and protein. Both natural oils protect the hair from being stripped (and from excessive swelling of the cuticle) when you shampoo.
  3. Deep condition your hair with a moisturizing conditioner after every wash.
  4. Get a protein treatment.  For maintenance, you can do this once a month or more if your hair is breaking.
  5. Trim away split ends as necessary, but don’t get a trim for the sake of trimming. If your goal is to retain length, you’ll only be cutting off perfectly good hair. The less you do to damage your hair, the less you’ll need to trim it. 
  6. No microfiber or towel drying. Contrary to popular belief, microfiber rips the hair out. It acts like velcro to our tresses! Towel drying frizzes the hair. Either air dry or use an old t-shirt.
  7. Refrigerate your leave-in conditioner. A cold leave-in will help to seal your hair’s cuticle after washing. This is extremely helpful if you can’t take a cold water rinse. It will also increase the shine in your hair.
  8. Lubricate your hair with a light natural oil daily. Jojoba is light and helps keep the hair tangle free.
  9. Seal your ends with Jamaican Black Castor Oil. I have found this oil to be the best at protecting the ends from splitting. It’s so thick and protective, causing the ends to clump together. Seal after every wash and before styling.
  10. Massage your scalp to stimulate your hair follicles 2-3 times a week. Some believe this encourages hair growth. I have not found it to do so one way or another, but it certainly can’t hurt and it does increase the blood flow to your scalp.
  11. Take a multi-vitamin with Methylosulfonylmethame (MSM). MSM is believed to extend the lifespan of your individual hairs while also alleviating dry scalp (less hair shed).
  12. Never sleep on your hair loose. It’s more prone to tangling and breakage. Tie it up and…
  13. Make satin your hair’s best friend. Sleeping in a satin scarf, bonnet or on a satin pillowcase prevents your hair’s moisture from being robbed.
  14. Moisturize your hair as needed. Use your sense of touch to tell. If it feels dry, moisturize. If you are chemically relaxed, you may need to do so 1-2 times daily. Natural hair may only require moisturizing every couple days.
  15. Don’t use too many different brands. When your hair begins responding, you want to know what’s working. In other words, curtail your PJ (product junkie) ways, take good notes and keep it simple!
  16. Eat a diet rich in Omega-3 fatty acids. It's good for your hair and skin too, keeping both soft and pliable. 
  17. Try henna. I’ve been giving my hair henna treatments for a few years now.  My hair health is improved along with amazing strength and shine.
  18. Clarify monthly. Hair products build up on the hair and every now and then the hair needs to be thoroughly cleansed. Especially, if you only co-wash (condition wash). You can either use a clarifying shampoo once a month or add a tablespoon of baking soda to your hair while shampooing. Apple cider vinegar is another option. 
Styling
  1. Protective style your hair. Wear simple styles that offer little manipulation of your tresses and hide your ends which are the oldest parts of your hair. Buns and up-dos are classic.
  2. Stop heat styling your hair. Air drying is the best thing you can do to keep your hair on your head. Limit heat styling to rare special occasions.
  3. Never comb or brush dry hair to style. Finger comb or wear hair in twist outs, twists, braids or braids out to minimize breakage.
  4. Comb hair from the bottom up. When your hair is soaking wet and saturated with conditioner, you can comb it with a large tooth comb or Denman brush to detangle. Do so carefully, working from the bottom up.
  5. Never ever tease your hair. This is a cardinal sin against natural hair (well hair in general, but some don’t know it)
  6. Don’t pull hair apart like a wishbone. If your hair is tangled, gently pull it up and apart in stead of pulling it apart like would a wishbone.
  7. Use hair accessories with no hanging parts or exposed metal. Banana clips, Satin Scrunchies, Goodie Flex Barrettes, Ouchless bobby pins & Ouchless elastic bands are the best for styling hair so that it does not get damaged.
  8. Avoid pulling hair tight at the hairline. Doing so will recede your hairline and damage the follicles permanently.
  9. Check your nails. Hanging nails will damage hair. Always make sure your nails are smooth and even before hair styling.   
Got any hair tips you’d like to add to the list? How many of the above have you made a habit of?!

Left to Right: Kristi Castlin, Brianna Rollins, and Nia Ali

Team USA just claimed the top three spots in the 100M hurdles olympics, and guess what? They were all Black women.

For the first time (EVER) in history, a nation swept the podium at the 100M hurdles. Rollins finished first in 12.48 seconds, followed by Ali in 12.59 seconds and Castlin in 12.61 seconds according to NBC Olympics. In case you missed it, watch the historic moment below. #BlackWomenDidThat

Gold: Brianna Rollins (United States)
Silver: Nia Ali (United States)
Bronze: Kristi Castlin (United States)


source: pinterest
by Ariane of BlackNaps.org

Special occasions may call for you to have a sleek style or you may simply just want to change things up with a different look. Luckily you do not have to sacrifice your hair’s health as you can achieve a sleek look without using heat at all.
Before You Start

I won’t lie to you, it is a process especially if you have kinky textured hair! You also need to know which products work the best when it comes to giving your hair hold. Many naturals rave about Olive Oil Eco Styler Gel and I am sure for them it works great. I happen to prefer the Black Eco Styler Gel because the hold lasts better for me.

The Process
  1. Begin the process on clean (build-up free),air dried and stretched hair. (Important! Starting off like this yields the best results.)
  2. Lightly mist your hair with water. No need to saturate just mist.
  3. Do a side part or lay your hair in the direction you want it to fall into.
  4. Work with your hair section by section adding your favorite gel or jam. This is important to get the best coverage. (Important! It’s more timely but you MUST work in sections).
  5. Secure with a ponytail holder when you are all done.
  6. Wrap your hair with a satin or silk scarf to further lay your hair.
Good Visuals
Gel Used: Eco Styler Protein Styling Gel (my personal fav)


Gel Used: Ampro Shine ‘n Jam Extra Hold Conditioning Gel with Honey Extract

While this method is time consuming, it’s very straight forward. So if you have a bridezilla on your case to get a sleek hairstyle for her wedding or you just want to; you will not have to worry about the risk of heat damage.

by Tiffani Greenaway of MyMommyVents.com
#Hairgoals. We all want strong, healthy hair, but we also want to have incredible length. Shrinkage is an ego killer--but here are 5 ways to get the unbelievable length you've been dreaming of.

1. Know, so you can grow.
Do you know your hair? Not just whether it's 4C or 3A, but really know it. What types of products does your hair love? Everyone should stay away from parabens (Methyl, Propyl, Butyl and Ethyl), but how does your hair react to other ingredients? Before you start buying miracle oils, get to know your hair. What works for your girl may not work for you.
2. Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize. And then moisturize again. To hydrate hair and keep it growing, deep condition weekly. Deep conditioning brings life back to limp strands and revitalizes curls. hair that is regularly deep conditioned is more manageable, softer, and longer, because it's less prone to breakage. Deep condition weekly and keep hair healthy with oils like coconut and jojoba or raw shea butter. Massaging your scalp with castor oil also helps to stimulate growth. 

3. Get frequent trims.
Like rapper O.T. Genasis reminds us, sometimes you need to cut it. "Hair typically only grows about a quarter of an inch — to a half an inch max — a month," says celebrity hair stylist Mark Townsend. "If you wait so long that splits are causing your hair to break off high up on the strand, your hair will actually be shorter than if you get consistent trims."
4. Baby your hair.
That means no more daily flat ironing. No more sleeping without a satin pillowcase, bonnet, or scarf. No more using a bath towel to dry your strands--try a microfiber towel or "plopping" with an old t-shirt. To grow longer, healthier, hair, you've got to take care of it.

5. And don't forget to protect it.
Switch up the placement of your ponytail or headband. Those cute elastics that hold your puff shouldn't be placed in the same spot every day--that's how I got some of the worst breakage ever. Switch your style, and don't be afraid of protective styling. A 'do that hides your ends keeps them safe from breaking and shedding. Braids, buns, and even a properly installed weave can help to protect your hair.

Long, healthy hair won't happen overnight, but with these 5 tips, your growth will be unbelievable.



We always read the directions on hair products about adding a "dime-sized amount to your hair". And I think that every natural can see the humor in this statement. Well with the ongoing trend on YouTube about “100 coats of mascara, “100 layers of foundation”, “100 coats of nail polish”, etc., I wanted to make my own version of it and try it out on natural hair. I decided to put “100 Pumps of Conditioner” on my natural hair, let it air-dry and see if it turned out to be an utter disaster, or a complete success! What do you guys think? Does 100 Pumps of conditioner sound completely ridiculous or does it sound like a normal part of curly hair routines? Check out the video to see how my hair turned out with 100 pumps of conditioner! I hope you enjoy!

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