Thursday, 26 March 2015

TYPE 4 HAIR: THE PRODUCTS.


Natural hair in the UK has really taken off in recent years, and this makes me so happy! When i began my transition way back in December of 2009, Natural hair had garnered a lot of attention across the pond in the US, but over here, not so much. Things are very different today, and I love seeing women in all their coiled, curly, kinky glory. I've noticed one thing in regards to the natural hair community online, and that is that Type 4 ladies don't get much love. When i first went natural i expected my hair to cascade down my hair in thick, silky ringlets, so you can imagine my horror when it grew outwards in tiny kinks and pencil-width coils that framed my face like a fluffy halo. Things have changed since then and i've learnt a lot about how to care for my hair and loving my texture by watching YouTubers like Naptural85 and Kimmaytube, and by general trial and error, particularly with products. In this post i'll be sharing with you the products that make my type 4 hair, a breeze to style!


1. NXS Nature Intense Moisturising Hair Lotion : I have a soft spot in my hair product collection for UK based lotions and potions, and have been using NXS products since late 2013 when I was introduced to the brand over Twitter. Delphina, the founder strives to create effective products that are at least 87% natural in its composition which is pretty awesome and makes me feel good about what exactly i'm slathering on my hair. Onto the product, for my texture, it's more of a hair milk than a moisturiser in the sense that it's really nice and lightweight so it's perfect for my mid-week refresh and moisturising-sealing routine. Also, i love the scent of this product, it has a very pleasant vanilla scent to it.

2. Motions Foaming Wrap Lotion : If i'm doing any style that requires a soft hold like a roller set, curl former set or even just a braid n' curl, this baby right here is my go to! It keeps my hair smooth, in place, and helps to fight humidity and frizz. Plus it gives me a few days of definition and wear before i throw my hair up into a bun.

3. Tresseme Naturals Nourishing Moisture Conditioner : The ultimate staple in my hair-drobe. I've sworn by Tresseme products since I was 16, that's seven years of good hair days thanks to them! I live by their conditioners because they are super affordable, easy to find, work very well and leave my hair smelling like a tropical rainforest. If you've yet to try their conditioners, i'd urge you too! I love them so much that i use them to co-wash and even as a leave in when i wear my hair in a wash n' go.

4. A Spray Bottle of Water : H20 is a natural girls best friend, both internally and externally, and although i rarely get in the recommended 2 litres of water a day, i make sure to vigorously spritz my hair before styling on a daily basis as it makes it more pliable, and it infuses your hair with moisture. I always make sure to seal that moisture in with a light oil like olive or coconut oil.

5. Dark & Lovely Coil Moisturising Soufflé | I picked this up on a whim when i'd run out of my (very pricey) Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie, and i was hooked ever since. When did Dark & Lovely step up their hair game?! Because this stuff is THE BOMB! It moisturises and leaves my very dry colour treated hair soft and luscious for days! It has become a serious staple in my hair arsenal especially since my local Boots sell it!

6. Ecostyler Olive Oil Gel : I think Ecostyler is among the holy grail natural hair products, more or less every one has tried this or used it at some point in time, and for me it works well for buns and styles where I need my hair laid (and to stay laid!).

7. ORS Edge Control : Another holy grail natural hair product. This keeps even my 4a edges slick and sleek all day. The only con is that sometimes it leaves a weird white residue on my hair but I've found using it along with an oil combats that.

8. Aspall Apple Cider Vinegar : ACV is a product that is highly slept on, it works as an effective yet gentle cleanser, and helps to lay cuticles flat, preventing moisture from escaping. I use Aspall's AVC every now and again when I want clean hair, but don't want the dryness associated with sulphate laden shampoo's.

9. ghd Heat Protect Spray : I'm on a year long 'no-heat' challenge so I won't be straightening or blow drying my hair until January 2016, but when I want straight hair with minimal reversion, I've found ghd's heat protectant works well to eliminate any puffiness or frizziness in the days after.

10. Groovy Food Organic Coconut Oil : Coconut Oil, how I love thee! For the shine it provides my hair alone, makes coconut oil a winner in my books, but it is also one of the few oils that can apparently penetrate the hair shaft. I love how it makes my hair feel and it doesn't weight it down or leave it looking like an oil slick.

I hope this post has helped if you're looking for new hair products to try. I'll be doing another series with the hair tools I use, and maybe a few pictorials about how I do my signature styles. If you're considering ditching the creamy crack, I'd say go for it! I love the versatility of natural hair, and I'm so glad I made the transition.

Have a great week :)
 
 
x
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Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Now Dissolve Me.


When I plopped my hat on my head this weekend, my sister exclaimed laughing loudly that I look like a black female version of Harry Styles. Upon googling a few images of said 'Harry Styles', I have to agree that I do indeed look like a black female version of him in these photos. Not that i'm complaining as it seems that half the world's population fancies him so i'll take it as a very good compliment.

The weather is less biting, and flowers are beginning to bloom and all of this makes me happy and excited. Although it's still technically winter, I can almost smell the flowers of Spring, feel the April Showers and think of all the dresses I will wear sans tights, layering is becoming a little tiresome as of late as it isn't cold enough for fancy faux fur anymore, but also not warm enough to not wear a jacket or a thickish jumper. In preparation for Spring, i've been switching up bits and bobs in my wardrobe, starting with my glasses. My newest glasses are a pair of aptly named 'Malcolm' frames from London Retro, and these are very different from my usual style. I almost never opt for black glasses as i think they look quite harsh on my face but i loved the metal rim along this pair and so decided to bite the bullet and go for them, although Glasses Direct does have a free home trial, but i was certain i'd like these and i guess i guessed correctly (see what i did there hehe).

I've also been diggin' the whole big hat thing, although my hair would rather i didn't (My hat hair is awful!). H&M have been giving me life plus a little bit more in regards to their hats and they're very affordable to at a mere £14.99 so go forth and snatch some up in time for spring if you haven't already!




HAT - H&M
BRETON & JEANS - PRIMARK
BOOTS - OFFICE
GLASSES* - LONDON RETRO




As always have a lovely week :)



x
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Friday, 13 March 2015

Mandarin Oranges

Hello! It feels like forever since I last posted, although i think my last post about a week ago (ayyy!). Firstly, thank you SO much for all the sweet words, kind e-mails and general love across the web in regards to my last post on reading and loneliness. I'm glad i disregarded my parents advice of "not talking to strangers on the internet"  I've come to realise that strangers on the internet are pretty damn awesome. People are just so nice it makes my heart sing! Big love and hugs to you all for being such lovely folk! Secondly, my cousin Emmy came from Chicago for a (literal) flying visit and we spent the weekend with my other cousins and sister drinking cocktails and cackling about the past, and it felt so good. It was the type of laughter that shook your whole body and contorted your face horribly but it felt so damn good and was definitely needed. I am not a very lovey-dovey-huggy person (i'm a virgo through and through!) but there are few people in this world that I love as much as Emmy, we fight like cat and dog, day and night but she's a good egg and has been by my side since we were born.

Hope you're all having a good week! I have a few exciting projects launching next week and this has made me so very happy!


SHIRT - PRIMARK
DUNGAREES - VINTAGE
BOOTS - OASIS 
GLASSES - LONDON RETRO




x
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Thursday, 5 March 2015

"We Read To Know We're Not Alone"

I stopped reading for a long time. In between 2012 and 2013 I can honestly say I didn't pick up a single book to read for pleasure. The only books I read were University texts for my dissertation or some other written assignment and at the end of last year i somehow fell back in love with curling up with a good book and a warm mug of coffee. I was looking for coats in a charity shop back in October last year and saw some books on a 'four for £1' offer and i guess the rest was history. Now every morning on my commute to work and on my way home I sit quietly, oblivious the hustle and bustle of serious looking suit wearer's and briefcase holders and i block out the crying voices of children and angry mothers trying to get their kids to school whilst i while away the time with my nose buried in a new book. I'm aiming for one a week so i can exceed my goodreads target of 30 books this year and get acquainted with all sorts of books from fiction to non fiction, adventure to feminism. ALL THE BOOKS I can get my fingers essentially. 

I've mostly been reading so much because I've felt microscopic and quite alone lately, and I know i've been trying (believe me i really have) to feel better but it's so hard to even want to wake up some mornings, particularly the weekends when i don't have to be at work. Monday to Friday I can function pretty well as I have a responsibility to be somewhere and get things done and I almost welcome extra hours of work because it means i can busy myself and not think, and that makes things a little easier. The weekends are hard though. Very hard. On friday nights i just buy myself some sushi, maybe another book, come home to a quiet bedroom and a very old teddy bear that is always happy to see me. I hate using the 'D-word' but reading has really helped with said D-Word. Because i'm lost in a mass of swirling words and someone else's thoughts, it means i don't have time to think too much of my own and allow my own grey cloud of sharp words to overwhelm and consume me. 

I'm onto my second book of the week after finishing "The Fault in Our Stars" yesterday. I want to write a lot about it but i'm still sort've processing it and i'm contemplating reading it again because some books are just so heart-achingly sad that you need to make sure of it you know? The book has inspired me to be a little kinder and not take life or anything for granted so I'm trying to do nice things for others, like giving up my seat on the train to work, or paying for someone's morning coffee. Try it yourself! You can even just call or text someone who you know is suffering from one thing or the other. We shouldn't let each other feel so alone, because we might just be the person to pull another back from the brink. Enough sad rambling for one night, it's March, a new month and a clean slate so let's make it a good one. Plus i am a firm believer of things happening (or not happening) for very good reasons that we'll look back on one day.

Something to think about this week, and as always I hope it's a wonderful for each and every one of us. Much love, and much light. (PS recommend me some of your favourite books!)

x


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Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Borough Market


One fine Thursday morning two weeks ago, I woke up very early with my camera and a good book in my hand and took the tube to London Bridge for a much needed me-day. The best way to start the day naturally is with a stack of pancakes, and usually if i'm on my own i avoid eating out because i get super self conscious and worry that people think I've been stood up, however i was determined to get a huge fluffy stack of The Breakfast Club's Bacon Pancakes, so i walked past three times before summoning up the courage to say, "Just one please" with an air of false indifference. The waitress sat me down in a little corner and as i glanced around looking at couples and business people chattering over their food i thought "shit shit shitty shit, why am I eating alone oh my gawd" but after ordering a flat white and bringing out my book of choice (It was 'Things Fall Apart' by Chinua Achebe) i felt a little more at ease. And when the pancakes arrived, i happily shoveled forkfuls into my mouth whilst wondering what would happen next in Umuofia.

Afterwards I went to the infamous Borough Market, and what a treat it was! So many colours, textures, scents and goods! I walked around once taking everything all in before deciding to bring out my camera and happily snap away whilst taking time to buy a few Meringues, Macarons and Cacti (a girl's gotta treat herself ok!). I wholeheartedly recommend taking a trip to Borough, for the energy alone if not for all the delicious treats.

And I wholeheartedly recommend you taking yourself out for pancakes, or waffles, or whatever breakfast fare your heart desires. It's good to treat yourself sometimes.

Have a lovely week and let me know what you're all getting up to! 

x
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