Growth Update!
Monday, February 08, 2010 | 6 comments

It's been two months since the last update! Sorry for the hiatus, lovelies. We'll be updating more frequently now. Anyway, I am one month away from my first year ful...

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I've seen some women have success with No-Lye, but I've seen plenty more with damage from it. I was in that "damage-from-no-lye" category. My hair was always puffed up, dry, cracked, and split and I didn't understand why. I was always told that Lye would burn off my hair and that I would be bald if I used it --- This coming from my mom, whose home relaxers burned my poor little scalp anyway. Well, when I first went to my Dominican stylist, she told me she was going to do a corrective with Affirm because my hair was in bad shape. When she turned that chair so I could see myself in the mirror, I couldn't believe it. It was either a salon made illusion or magic, I thought, because I had never seen my hair look so healthy. But a few weeks later, my hair was still healthy! If you're suffering from breakage and you suspect it's the No-Lye, have a professional do a corrective with a Lye based relaxer. Just remember to get your hair into shape before by deep conditioning weekly until you're ready to relax.


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Just thought I share a recipe that worked for my little sister who is a 4b natural. This recipe is not only good for naturals, but also for transitioners and stretchers. See, I kept my promise by focusing on all hair types be it natural or relaxed! :)

  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 1 juiced lime
  • 1 TBSP honey

Mix this together. Apply it to your hair, focusing on your new growth. Let it sit for an hour. Rinse, shampoo, and condition as usual.


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If you plan on blow drying your hair, don't blow dry hair that is soaking wet. Instead, wrap your hair in a towel for 10-15 minutes, so that the water can be absorbed, and remove any excess water before using your blow dryer. This will not only speed up the blow drying, but also prevent heat damage!

*NOTE: Always remember to use a heat protectant!*


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My grandmother died of liver cancer in July 2004. Before her death, she was in and out of the hospital all the time. The one thing I noticed is that she had a synthetic wig that she barely wore because she hated it. Ever since her death, I've been very passionate about Locks Of Love. What they do for children is amazing and I thought I should discuss this with you ladies. These children are suffering from Alopecia, Cancer, and other diseases. If you have 10 inches of hair, you can donate! Remember that you can always grow your hair back. Hair grows about 6 inches a year, so you'd gain it back in no time.

GUIDELINES FOR ACCEPTABLE DONATIONS

  • Hair that is colored or permed is acceptable.
  • Hair cut years ago is usable if it has been stored in a ponytail or braid.
  • Hair that has been bleached (usually this refers to highlighted hair) is not usable. If unsure, ask your stylist.
  • Hair that is swept off of the floor is not usable.
  • Hair that is shaved off and not in a ponytail or braid is not usable.
  • We cannot accept dreadlocks. Our manufacturer is not able to use them in our children’s hairpieces. We also cannot accept wigs, falls, hair extensions or synthetic hair.
  • Layered hair is acceptable if the longest layer is 10 inches.
  • Layered hair may be divided into multiple ponytails.
  • Curly hair may be pulled straight to measure the minimum 10 inches.
  • 10 inches measured tip to tip is the minimum length needed for a hairpiece.
  • Please Note: Shorter hair will be separated from the ponytails and sold to offset the manufacturing costs. Although the shorter hair cannot be used in the hairpieces, it still greatly helps to reduce costs.
  • Gray hair will be accepted and sold to offset the manufacturing costs.

For more information, please visit Locks Of Love: http://www.locksoflove.org/donate.html


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Shrinkage. What's the first thing that pops into your head when you think about Shrinkage? (And don't say guys coming out of a pool! LOL.) Well, Shrinkage for me means when my hair is extremely short one minute and longer when I stretch it. Why? Natural black hair is usually extremely tight and coily, kinda like a Slinky™, and looks shorter because of this. But once straightened, the hair may look many inches longer!

Look at that shrinkage!


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I don't know why I never made a post about this before. Anyway, the lovely ladies on Fotki inspired me to make this article. So, what the heck is Pre-pooing? Pre-pooing, a.k.a Pre-Shampooing, is a method used to give your hair some good treatment before washing. You can pre-poo with a protein conditioner if your hair hates deep conditioning with protein, or you can pre-poo with garlic and olive oil if you're experiencing breakage/shedding. You can also pre-poo with other conditioners/oils of your choice. I recently purchased Burt's Bees Avocado Butter Pre-Shampoo Hair Treatment for my little sister who is natural. Her hair feels softer than it usually does every time I use it on her hair. I plan to pre-poo when I take down the twist extensions.


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I just want to say THANK YOU to all the blog readers! You guys are amazing and really nice too! I've gotten at least 25 different e-mails since the beginning of December and it just amazes me because I never thought people read the blog like that. So, let me just say it: You guys are wonderful! Thanks for reading! You can go back to what you were doing now, LOL.


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I have just happened upon your site today and I think it really helps so thank you! I have hair concerns and was wondering if you could help me through them. I'm a 15 year old girl living in the U.K and I'm torn between keeping my Afro and remaining natural as I have already finished growing out a relaxer from years ago, or getting it texturized. The last time I checked years ago my hair was past my shoulders and it is also very thick. Also, as I keep it in cornrows all the time, my scalp has become EXTREMELY sensitive. There seems to be a big debate about keeping true to your roots and keeping your afro and relaxing for ease of your hair. Due to all this different opinions I'm quite torn which is why I am considering texturizing instead. I would like to have straight hair sometimes but in general I would just like to be able to handle my own hair as I'm getting older now. Do you think you could help me please?
Your faithfully
M.


Hey M.,

Natural hair is beautiful. I do plan to go natural one day, but not any time soon. To me, Texturizers are a mild strength relaxer. They break bonds (just like a relaxer) in your hair to loosen up the curl. For a straight look, you can always get your hair pressed or a get a blowout. The Mizani Thermasmooth (http://www.mizani-usa.com/?m=44&300) line is great for naturals who want to straighten. You can also invest in a good flat iron like Sedu and a blowdryer like CHI. You don't have to use a texturizer or relaxer to tame your hair. It's all about products and tools. Plus, this way is good because you can stay true to your roots. If you have anymore questions, feel free to e-mail me at anytime.

- Belle Cheveux


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Contrary to popular belief, braids DO NOT make your hair grow. Some people think it's the tension on the hair that helps it grow, but no. The only reason why your hair would seem like it's growing is because you're not manipulating it as much.


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Tool Name: Revlon 1875 Watt Ion Select Professional Dryer
Price Range: $21.99-$25.99
Company: Helen Of Troy USA (http://www.hotus.com/)
Catch Phrase: Hair looks shinier and healthier, feels softer, with less "frizz."

What I Say: Wooow is what I have to say about this dryer. I only use this dryer after my hair is 80% dry and I'm in a hurry. The dryer has 12 lights on it to indicate the level of ion output. Coarse hair is supposed to use all 12 lights, but I use 8 (12 will cook your hair). My old blow dryers would leave my hair all stick straight and incredibly dry, but not this one. My hair always feels good no matter what and it dries fast.

Tool Tip: Dry hair in sections!
Rating: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ (4/5)


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What is it?

Let's talk Ayurveda. Ayurveda is an ancient system of health care that was designed by Indian people (No, not Native Americans). The word "Ayurveda" can be translated to "science of life." (Ayur meaning "life" and veda meaning "science/knowledge") Many women have hopped on the bandwagon for Ayurvedic hair care. Ayurvedic hair care not only involves the health of the hair, but also the health of the body. According to Ayurveda, the health of the hair is reflected by the health of the person. So, if your diet ain't on point, you're hair ain't on point either.

Where do I start?

You can start purchasing items such as Shikakai, Coconut oil, Mustard oil, Amla, Almond oil, Camphor, etc. Washing the hair with natural shampoos/soaps is important! That's where the Shikakai and Amla come in. They are amazing for the hair. Another thing to remember is daily scalp massages. The use of oils like Coconut and Mustard oil fits in for this job. These oils can help with dandruff, hair loss, and an itchy scalp. Last, but not least, your diet is important! Good foods to include in your diet are: green leafy vegetables, milk, fruit, soybean, nuts, and vitamins.


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What an extremely long day! I've been super busy working with Google and Amazon all day. Advertisements and such. But the good news is, TCHD officially has an online store! Yes, yes, yes! You can find the hottest hair care products and books there. Here's the link: http://astore.amazon.com/thecoahaidia-20


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Hey,

I just wanted to say thank-you so much for being sweet enough to answer my questions, I'm very grateful. I had a few questions after exploring your website up and down. What exactly is co-washing? And right now I have no regimen but I'm working on it.. What kind of buns do you do, because I find that the donut buns don't really work well for me.I was afraid to get braids because I thought that putting tension on my already weak hair would make it break more. Two more questions I had were- How do you dry your hair after washing, and how do you keep your ends so healthy? Once again thank you so much answering my questions.

Be blessed,
A.



Hey A.,

Co-washing, or conditioner washing, is just washing your hair with a conditioner instead of a shampoo. Shampoos can dry your hair if done daily, so many people opt for conditioner washing a few times a week and shampooing once or twice a week. I co-wash a lot and it helps tremendously with growth since the scalp is always clean with no sebum blocking it. If it's been like 6 or 7 weeks since my last relaxer, I'll go to my Dominican stylist and get a blowout to get my roots under control and get back to my co-washing a few days later.

The buns I do are with my own hair. I honestly HATE the sock bun thing because my hair doesn't seem to agree with it for some reason. It's probably because of the cotton. But yeah, back to the bun: I do a regular ponytail and then loop my hair under making sure the elastic isn't on my ends. It's that simple.

After washing, I always let my hair air dry. When my hair's completely dry (which takes hours), I put my hair into a banana clip. My ends stay healthy because I apply a lot of conditioner on them when I co-wash or shampoo, I keep them lightly moisturized, and I keep them away from my clothes. Clothes can cause breakage and not a lot of women know that.

As for your hair, I'd suggest going to a hair dresser, preferably a Dominican one, and getting a deep conditioning, rollerset, and a light trim. Make sure you tell them a light one because you know stylists get scissor happy sometimes. Then, you can start building a regimen (http://coarsehair.blogspot.com/2007/09/building-regimen.html). But if you want to do it yourself, I'd suggest co-washing every other day with a moisturizing conditioner like Nexxus Humectress, It's expensive but it's worth it, and shampooing once a week with a moisturizing shampoo like Creme of Nature Ultra Moisturizing (green and yellow), conditioning with Humectress, and deep conditioning with Organic Root Stimulator Hair Mayo. You should use heat when you deep condition. Then when your hair is a little bit healthier, try getting box braids (plaits, individuval braids, etc. so many names for one thing, lol.) and make sure to still shampoo, condition, and deep condition once a week! Synthetic fiber/hair tends to rob the hair of moisture so keeping a good braid spray like Africa's Best around would be awesome.

Another thing, make sure that you DO NOT USE NO-LYE RELAXERS! It's hair breakage in a jar. Trust me. No-lye is made with calcium hydoxide and this chemical dries out the hair, causing the hair to look "poofy." It also makes the hair extremely weak and prone to breakage. Women use No-Lye because they think Lye is bad. But Lye is the way to go. Lye helps the hair hold in moisture better unlike No-Lye. I used to use No-Lye and my hair broke off no matter what I did but I've seen some women have success with No-Lye though. Affirm FiberGuard or Affirm Conditioning Creme are amazing. I always get my relaxers done by a professional because I do not trust anyone, including my mother, with any chemical that's going to go on my head. Always have a professional do it, or someone who is skilled with applying a relaxer without burning your scalp. Your scalp should never burn no matter what.

Almost forgot to add this: Combs and brushes can break your hair. I don't like to comb so I finger comb my hair gently everyday. The only time I use a comb is when I use a large tooth one for detangling my hair during co-washes and shampoos. I always comb from the bottom first and work my way up. Starting at the roots is only asking for breakage. But if you must comb, buy a seamless comb (http://www.tenderheaded.com/). I only use brushes if my hair is resisting being put in a banana clip. Even then, I gently brush my hair.

Anyway, I know I wrote a lot, but it's about your hair and that's important. I hope I've answered all your questions and feel free to e-mail me at any time with questions. If you have any questions on products, I'll be glad to help.

- Belle Cheveux


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I was reading an old thread on BHM that got my attention. It was about how bacteria can stunt the growth of your hair. I thought it was interesting because it better explains why frequent washing can help your hair. Here's the original post:


Posted: 04 May 2006 at 1:42pm
Hay ladies, it's Sidney. I am a newbie but I have been lurking on this and other forums for more than a year. I want to address why MTG and Miconazole Nitrate do worK!

First of all, I tried MTG. And like many of you, I got patches of new hair growth. After being phased out by the funk, I decided to just use the sulfur oil.

Also, you know the ladies that co-wash all the time and get super growth, well here's why.

All the people who have chronic hair loss, usually have some type of persisting fungal or bacterial infection. MTG contains cade oil, which kills this bacteria and fungi. Helping the hair to grow. These nasty bacteria not only block your pores, inhibiting growth but they also can eat your hair! EeeW! so disgusting. (See the links below). They probably also secrete nasty toxins and wastes after they are done feeding off your scalp. They scalp is moist and is a great environment for them to thrive.

Also, look at women of other races. They wash their hair frequently, getting rid of these nasty microbes, and lo and behold, they have long hair. Black women wash less frequently. You ever had that nasty, stinky hair from not washing it, well that is a tale-tale sign that there is a fungus on your head.

Minonazale Nitrate is also antifungal, so it keeps the scalp clean and allows your hair to grow. Use sulfur? Well I just read online today that Fungi hate Sulfur and there is a sulfur containg product called "smelly soap" that is used to kill these fungi, hence MTG helps since it has cade oil and sulfur. By the way, if you are using MTG, u should shake it up to make sure the sulfur at the bottom is getting on your scalp. Well, this is just my two cents. sorry its soo long. Off to wash my hair, again!

SEE THE LINKS BELOW ABOUT BACTERIA INHIBITING GROWTH
http://hairsite2.com/library/article212.htm
http://www.healthyhairplus.com/thinning_hair.htm


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Texlaxing. Relaxurizing. Whatever you call it, it's the same thing. Texlaxing is basically not allowing the relaxer to completely straighten your hair. It allows you to keep some of the natural curl (not that much though depending on how long you leave it on for) and thickness in your hair. When your hair is relaxed bone straight, your hair loses its ability to hold a curl. I started texlaxing May '07 without even knowing. My original plan was just to relax my hair enough so that I could still get a sew-in. A few months later, I read about texlaxing and was surprised that so many women were doing it. I asked my stylist to texlax my hair from now on since I get a blowout after anyway. So far, I love it. Hop on the bandwagon.


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Mix equal parts of vinegar and water, put it in a spray bottle, and spray away. This concoction makes a great spray to remove buildup. Afterwards, you can shampoo and condition normally to get rid of the vinegar smell. Yuck!


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I don't know how long Fotki will allow it to be up, but here's the link to The Coarse Hair Diary Forum! http://forum.fotki.com/bellecheveux/ - Here you don't have to become a member to post a topic! You can post all the topics you want and either I or fellow Fotki members can answer. So c'mon over to the forum!


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I finally finished adding the twist extensions today! I used the Afro Kinky Soul Bulk 24"(?) from the Femi Collection. I decided to get it in color so I won't get my hair and the weave confused when I'm ready to take them out. I got color number thirty I believe and I love it! Anyway, as I said before, I plan on leaving these braids in for 5 months, while redoing them, to help with my stretch and the challenge that I am in. By the end of the 5 months, I will be about 28 weeks post. That's gonna be a lot of new growth to tame when I take them out! I really hope these twists will do me some good. Wish me luck!


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This is my progress after the trim, or cut, and bad relaxer. I'm six weeks post and just finish air drying so there's some shrinkage in there. I plan to relax for my birthday, February 2nd. Aquarian girls stand up! Anyway, I think it's good progress since all that drama happened in November. For the new year, I've decided to stretch longer (3 to 4 months tops), grow my edges, do more protective styles, and up my co-washing. Co-washing has been a life saver for my hair so I will continue doing it.

*UPDATE*
Okay, this is where I am plus a little shrinkage. I'm APL again! :) Anyway this picture was taken a few days before I had put kinky twist extensions in my hair. I will be wearing them for maybe 5 months straight. Yes, I will redo the twists in this 5 month period!


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I've decided to make a fotki! There, I'll post progress pictures every month. But I will only be doing comparison shots and tri-monthly progress on the blog. Anyway, the link for the fotki is: http://public.fotki.com/bellecheveux