Desperate Times, Desperate Measures

Now that we’re settled into our new house, I have a little more time for blogging (yay). To catch you up on my hair journey, I was following my routine developed from the information I got from The 5 Hair Archetypes with great results until it came time to prepare to move. Then, I sort of fell off the wagon. I had my hair in the mini twists and then the mini twist-out throughout that period, but I still washed my hair once a week. However, being as busy as I was at the time, some steps were shortened or skipped, which my hair didn’t appreciate. I didn’t really start to see the effects of this shortcutting until about two weeks ago when my hair decided to stage protest. Braid-outs AND twist-outs began to fail me. They were no longer as defined, my hair lost shine, and frizz returned with a vengeance. Upset at this minor setback, I desperately turned to wash-n-gos in the hopes that letting my hair revert to its natural curl pattern would help improve its condition, but no matter how much conditioner I left in my hair, frizz overpowered my curls once dry. This made me realize I really needed to get back on track with my routine. My hair needed some pampering and it was letting me know it.

I figured a protein treatment would act as a reset button for my hair. I picked up more yogurt and resumed using baking soda over Dr. Bronner’s Castile Soap (a product which worked well, but I found my hair would come out a little frizzier than when using baking soda and tea), but I ended up grabbing the wrong kind and it didn’t seem to have quite the same effect. I tried to make do for a while until I got a chance to revamp my products, but it just wasn’t working out. Not even my favorite Suave Naturals Rainforest Fresh conditioner had any effect. In fact, for the past week, my hair has barely been holding it’s own curl pattern and simply poofs. I’ve been having a bad hair day for an entire week. It got so bad that the other morning I got frustrated and told my husband I wanted to cut it off. He never believes me when I say that and neither do I, but it made me feel better to say it. I managed to smooth it into something presentable for work, but as I made my way to the door, I made myself a promise to really pamper my hair when I got home.

So I when I got home I had to search for items to stand in for my depleted products, which I had neglected to replace. I ended up with a happy accident that worked even better than my Greek yogurt treatment, aloe vera gel, and Suave conditioner combined. I mixed a little of the (wrong) yogurt I bought with real mayo, soybean oil, castor oil, rice vinegar, a teeny bit of an strongly scented herb infusion I’d made (to help mask the smell), and a few pumps of Dr. Bronner’s peppermint hand and body lotion. Why the lotion? Because it’s organic and contains the exact same ingredients in the exact same order as the Dr. Bronner’s hair creme so I said, “why not?” It smelled a little funny until I added the rice vinegar, which sort of neutralized the mayo-yogurt stench. Then, when I added the herb infusion and Dr. Bronner’s it had a somewhat medicinal peppermint smell, which after sitting for a while smelled something like mint chocolate for some reason. -shrug- The mixture had the same appearance and consistency as coconut milk. When I applied it to each section, it seemed to “relax” and moisturize my curls much like coconut milk. The unexpected super slip it provided made me swoon. I was done detangling in 20 minutes. I was pretty surprised as I hadn’t expected my protein concoction to function as a conditioning detangler so much as a restorative masque. I let it sit under a plastic bag (no heat) for what must have been about three hours or so while I did other things around the house. Results?

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High shine, extremely low frizz, super soft, elongated curls. Note: I theorize that the “elongating” is really just the protein filling in the gaps in the hair shaft and smoothing the surface thereby relaxing the frizz and reducing shrinkage. This on-the-fly conditioning protein treatment recipe may be a keeper!

I also had to whip up a new batch of shea butter pomade with what I had available and take it back to the old school spritz recipe of water and oil. I tweaked my shea butter recipe a little to suit my needs. The normal recipe is closely modeled after Naptural85’s, but this time I made my own. I complimented my shea butter with castor oil, soybean oil, a few pumps of Dr. Bronner’s Peppermint Hand and Body Lotion, and some L.A. Looks Sport gel for hold. The result of the new recipe was this:

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A soft, smooth hold. I couldn’t be more pleased. My hair has bounced back wonderfully and I inadvertently accomplished my goal of eliminating the need for store-bought products by using organic, edible ingredients. If only I could master braiding to the scalp so I wouldn’t have to separate. That would help do away with the frizz I experience when styling. That and some search & destroy trimming. Anyway, I’m just happy my hair is back to normal and thriving. Peace & Love

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