Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Final Post

Well, this is it! It is finally time to say goodbye to Blogger and The Good Hair Diaries. But there is a bit of good news:

There will be brand new posts over on KinxnQuirx starting MONDAY, MAY 23!
Yup, a whole week earlier than anticipated! 

Thank you for making TGHD what it was. I look forward to seeing you at KnQ soon!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

TGHD is Moving!

Yes, my dears & sirs. It's time to move on from here. Blogger has been great but it's time to move on to greener pastures.I want to expand my writing and my personal brand, and this is one step towards that. The Good Hair Diaries and The Eclectic will be combined at my new site, Kinx n Quirx. All of the old posts from both sites will be imported into the new one, and I will leave both blogs up with a redirect to the new site.

The site is still being built, but you are able to read, comment and connect via Google Friend Connect. No new posts until the official "grand opening" of the blog, which should be by May 30. (Yeah, I know that seems like a long time, but between a couple of real estate closings--thank ya Lawd!--and celebrating my birthday hard all month, doesn't seem like I have that long.)

As always, I love suggestions about topics, features, etc. so feel free to email me at ToriDBlogs@gmail.com and shoot me your ideas! Hopefully I will see all of you, plus some new faces, over at the new site!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Morning Rant: Don't tell me I NEED to straighten my hair!

My dad is guiltiest of this offense. When I went to the salon on Monday I ended up getting my hair straightened. Not my intent, but it happened. (Off topic, but not really: I completely wasted my money. The color didn't take because my hair is so dark, and the blowout lasted less than a day thanks to the crazy weather. I was pissed.) He veils his admonitions to go back to creamy crack with compliments:
"You look like a doll with your hair straight."
"Don't you like how it flows and moves when you walk?"
"Look how long it is!"
"When are you gonna get a perm again?" 
Fortunately within the months I've been natural, I've learned to ignore him most of the time and give quick comebacks the rest of the time: 
"They make dolls with afros."
"I like how my fro stays in it's place."
"Straightening it didn't make it longer."
Of course I like the look of straight hair, otherwise I'd never bother to straighten it in the first place. But the idea that I need straight hair makes me want to punch someone in the throat. And that's the exact feeling I had when an ex-FB associate from college tweeted "I really don't understand wht is so wrong wit getting a perm. U realize we think u look much better wit straight hair. Dnt nobody wanna grab ur hair and can't get they hand out cuz it's caught n all that kinkiness."

So many questions, mainly "We who?" Cause my bf loves loves loves my coils and doesn't keep his hands out of my hair, unless it's straightened.  Also, why the hell do you think your opinion matters to anyone? Why are you worried about how attractive other women are besides your baby momma/fiancee? How are you talking this mess but still trying to holla at me and Big Sexy (my fro)?!

Yeah, I got a little heated. My point is, have your preferences, because I certainly have mine. But to tell me what I need to do to be more attractive to you when you and your approval aren't even on my radar in the first place? MFer have a seat.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Falling Off the Wagon

I am one of those people with a horrible propensity to start things vigorously but gradually fall off until eventually I'm not doin' a thing. This is particularly true when it involves some type of regimen. The multi-step teeth whitening process dwindled to just daily brushing, mouthwash rinse and occasional flossing (DJM!) and the skin care routine involving about five different products to be used nightly has come to just a good scrub in the morning and before bed.

The hair is slowly going the same way, but maybe if I put myself on blast I'll be more accountable to myself and to y'all. (Maybe... hopefully.) The slack started in the winter months when I was no longer doing wash-and-gos. I went from co-washing every other day to washing weekly or bi-weekly with shampoo and using a leave-in conditioner. Sadly, I don't condition as I should nowadays and I think I'm paying the price for it. I'm finding more and more of those little fairy knots, and my ends are looking a little rough even though I trim them from time to time. Plus (I don't know whether or not this is a result of lack of care) my hair is just limp, lifeless and won't do anything I want it to do. Not typical of Big Sexy.

I'm going to start babying my hair all over again, but I really need something simpler. A regimen with 50-11 steps just isn't going to work for me. As I stated when I first started, I'm lazy! I guess this is where a protective style would really come in handy, huh? Well I should be getting some just in time for graduation (Big Sexy doesn't play well with the graduation cap) so hopefully that will help some. But then what?

I need help y'all! Do you have problems keeping up with your routine? If so, how do you cope? Have you found something simpler, or do you just say "whatever!" and do pretty much nothing until the spirit moves you? C'mon, help me out!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

I did it! (Kinda)

Several months ago I made a post about a flat twist updo that I wanted to try. The inspiration was a video by YTer SimplYounique. When I first discovered the video I attempted to copy the style; no luck. But I happened to watch it again on last Saturday night and realized that the problem wasn't just that I didn't know what I was doing when trying to flat twist. It was that I was trying to do too few twists, resulting in... well, there were no results because it wouldn't twist!

This time around I did smaller twists and the results somewhat resembled the style she did! Of course, with this being my first real attempt at flat twists, they were not nearly as neat as they should have been. But that didn't stop me from wearing them Sunday and Monday!

I was reeeeaaaally pleased with the front
front left stuck out a little

front right looked great IMO
side view. couldn't get a good pic of the back

too puffy and loose, especially the back (this was after sleeping on it one night and wearing it one day)

Next time I try this I think I'll make the following changes:
1. after twisting & pinning the top, I'll put them into a ponytail. Then when I twist the back I'll incorporate them into it to make a tiny bun (or if that doesn't work I could cover it with a rounded claw clip)
2. Using coconut or olive oil when I twist. Dunno why I didn't think about that. Frizzies are not the business!
3. Having cute bobby pins strategically placed throughout the hair
4. Using a comb to secure the back. I used almost all my bobby pins and was still uneasy about it staying in place.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

11 One-Ingredient Face Masks

A lot of naturalistas are no stranger to getting in the kitchen and whipping up something for their tresses. Well guess what? In your fridge and pantry there are goodies for your skin as well! Now if you're lazy (like me) you may not be crazy about experimenting with different recipes, finding what mixes well with what, etc. But the good news is that there are little items that we can use as face masks, no recipe needed! Some of these were no surprise to me: I've used honey before (great at fighting monster zits, BTW) and heard about using avocado and raw egg white. But some of these really shocked me! I think I'm going to put some to the test and see what really works.

So what do you say readers? Which of the face masks should I try first? Which, if any, will you be trying?

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Essential Oils

I'm looking for information on essential oils. I know about some of them, like jojoba and rosemary, but I want to dig deeper to find what other oils are out there and what they do. So far, the best information that I've found has come from Esoteric Oils. It includes information about various oils and gives a couple hair care recipes. The info is not limited to hair care; there are links about alternative medicine and treating various ailments with oils.

Please note that I am not endorsing anything sold by Esoteric Oils, nor have I tried any of their products/recipes. This is just the most comprehensive list that I have found to date. If any of my readers know of other sites (or better yet: books!) that provide information on essential oils, please hit me up in the comments or via email. I'd appreciate it soooo much!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Natural Hair Apparel

Even though it's only March, it's starting to warm up here in Mississippi . That means more casual outings, which means a need for more casual clothes. As I do more reading and searching the web for natural hair information, I often come across sites with cute tees, totes, etc. celebrating natural beauty. I wanted to share some of them with y'all just in case you wanted to buy me a birthday gift.

I love this Retro Chic T-shirt over at RegionUSA.com. Only thing I wonder about is how long the image would last. I've had bad luck with tees that had that kinda foil-like detailing on it. One or two washes and it was over! But of course this could be a lot better quality than what I had. I hope so, cuz I really want this shirt!

CafePress has tons of cute natural hair tees. I love this Kinky tee and how the word was used as an anagram. The word nerd in me is pleased!

This super cute "No exception" shirt is also from Cafe Press. I feel like I should wear this to church for all those older folks who say I look soooo much better with straight hair!

Through Twitter, I discovered YoungBlackNappy. They have a variety of tees, and I'm gonna get my hands on the "Naturally Sweet" and "Pick Pocket" shirts. I love "A mother's love" too. That may be next on the list. 

Back to CafePress. I found this I *heart* locs gym bag. It's a simple little design but I fell in love with it!  I am a sucker for a fine man with locs. I can't get it tho. The BF just had to cut his locs recently and he's still a little touchy about it! LOL Maybe I can get it when he's not so sensitive...

Soapbox Theory is one of the few sites I've seen that had apparel for men and women, and surprisingly my favorite design is one that is for men! The BP (Black Power) Stance design is awesome. Would be great to have a curvy female figure for a women's shirt!

Goddess Zuri has several lines of t-shirts, many of which have a natural theme like this I'm a Natural tee from  the beau-tees line. I love the creativity behind one line especially, the Sorori-tees. They have a natural spin for all four of the NPHC sororities, and one for non-Greeks as well! Only one complaint: it looks like they ran out of ideas by the time they got to my beloved Zeta. -_- I like the design on the Delta tees much better.

Zazzle, like CafePress, has plenty of natural-themed shirts, bags, pins, etc. This Afros are Love tee is among my favorites. In fact, I really like most of the designs under Bushy Baby! Apparel. I haven't found out for sure, but from the design I want to say its the same person who did the "regret" pic that I love. Anyone know for sure?

I know I'm missing some great ones. And I've seen some in the past that I cannot find online. That gives me the sads. LOL Tell me what I've missed! Surely my readers know of some great pro-natural apparel that they're keeping secret :) You can tell me, I promise not to show up in the same place as you with the same shirt!

By the way, one of my projects that I'm working on (besides a new website and book) is a line of natural tees. It's still a little ways off, but I wanted to give y'all a heads up!

Monday, February 28, 2011

Afternoon Quickie: Good Hair

Today at lunch I got a question I haven't heard in a long time, not since I cut my hair into a bob almost two years ago. The girl at the counter asked, "Is that your real hair?" I can't lie, that lil comment made me smile, like "Yes! I got it back!" But then came the other comment... "Oh, you got that good hair."


I don't know what to do with this comment. I can't really be mad at someone for saying this; after all, they are trying to give me a compliment. But "good" hair implies that there is such a thing as "bad" hair, which simply isn't true. There are different textures, some which appeal more (to some people) than others or may seem easier to handle. But "good" is determined by the quality of care. Anyone can have "good" hair if they learn what their hair needs and not attempt to do things that should be done by professionals (coloring, relaxing, etc.) on their own/without consultation.

Of course, I can't go into this little shpeel every time someone makes the comment. Usually I just smile awkwardly and say thanks....

Do you say anything when you hear "good/bad hair" comments, or do you tend to let it slide? If you do speak up, what do you say? Let me hear your thoughts. Maybe I'll have something to come back with next time!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Buying Into (and Out Of) the Beauty Myth

For the longest, I felt like there was a hierarchy of beauty. It was never explicitly stated, but the attitudes and actions of those around me lead me to this belief. It was always:

1. pretty light-skinned with long hair
2. pretty light-skinned
3. light-skinned with long hair
4. light-skinned
5. dark-skinned with long hair
6. dark-skinned

From childhood, I knew I was near the bottom of the totem pole. Then in high school/college big booties got thrown in the mix and I was even lower. According to the messages I received, my saving grace was my thick long hair. I may not have been pretty (because everyone knew dark-skinned girls couldn't be pretty!) but at least I had "good hair" that would cause someone to look my way... unless, of course, the light-skinned girls they looked at first were interested...

Somewhere along the way, I want to say in college, I shook the notion that the only desirable thing about me was my hair. Yes, I still had it long and kept it silky smooth with a perm but I begin to believe in the other aspects of my own beauty. Inner and outer. Amazingly, when I opened my eyes to the truth, I realized that others saw it too. I wasn't alone! Yes, dark-skinned girls could be cute. Yes, even the ones without a big ol booty. And yes, I was one of them! Yes, Virginia, there IS a Santa Claus!!

O_O Okay, maybe not the last one; I got caught up in the moment.

My point is this: we've all been fed nonsense about what constitutes beauty. Whether it was from family, the media, significant others... Some of us absorbed more of that thinking than others, but it doesn't mean that you have to continue to buy into that. Regardless of your skin tone, hair texture (or how you wear it), size, whatever... if you don't see the beauty in yourself, you can't expect the world to do it. Yes, we've been bombarded with the European "standard" of beauty, but it's a myth! There is no "standard" of beauty. Hello, "beauty is in the eye of the beholder!" Learn to love what you see in the mirror (even if you want to tweak some things), whether or not it fits other people's definition of beauty.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Tori's Tips for Terrific Twistouts

To have a great twistout, you have to start with great twists! It's been a year since I started doing my own hair, and the first style I attempted was two-strand twists and the subsequent twistout. Over time, I've developed my own little method for perfecting the twistout.

end of January
1. Twist on dry or semi-dry hair, not wet
I kinda stumbled across this, but I swear it's made all the difference in my twists and twistouts. When I first started doing my two-strand twists, I did them right after washing while they were still wet.  Doing this kept me from getting the most out of my twists for two reasons: 1. I couldn't correctly estimate how much hair I was using, so I ended up with fewer, fatter twists than I wanted, and 2. I wasn't ready for how the twists shrank once they dried. On top of that, it took forever for the hair to dry! Now I usually do my twists when my hair is completely dry. If I want to do it after washing, I'll let it air dry about 85% if I have time, or if I'm in a rush I'll spray it with heat protectant and sit under the dryer for a few minutes.

2. Keep your twistout style in mind when deciding the twisting pattern/parts
Instead of just twisting willy-nilly and waiting to see what happens, have a picture in mind of how you want your hair to look. This is more so for the front of your hair than the back. Will it all go straight back? Parted down the middle? The way you part your hair and the direction of the twists will determine how your twistout looks for at least a day or two so keep that in mind.

3. For a "big" twistout, wear twists longer
This is something that I just learned when I did my last twistout a few weeks ago. When I wear my twists only for a day or two, my twistouts are generally smooth, sleek, and not as big. It took a few days of wearing the twistout to get the big hair, but by then I was losing definition. However, this last time I wore the twists for four days. Even with the conditioner and wearing my bonnet at night, I could see the twists starting to puff up. (They were also a little frizzy from the weather). Once I took the twists down, I was amazed at the difference. Three-day twistout hair on day one! So if you're going for a sleek twistout, 1 or 2 days should do; go longer if you want to go bigger.

4. Seal twists with an oil
When I first started doing twists, I used Cantu Shea Butter to seal them. I thought this would give them shine and hold. Not so much. What did give them surprising hold and a good deal of shine was a mix of coconut and olive oil. You may want to experiment with different essential oils to find what you like best, but I would encourage you to incorporate an oil into your twists, especially on the ends.

5. Keep your twists conditioned and scalp well oiled
Just because twists are considered a protective style, that doesn't mean you don't have to do anything! Get a good spray leave-in conditioner such as Carol's Daughter Black Vanilla and get a hit daily. Your hair will thank you! And don't forget your scalp, because you can't have healthy hair without a healthy scalp. Apply your favorite oil to make sure it stays moisturized, especially during the winter. My favorite product for my scalp is We Rock Roots Rock Therapy, though I can also be found resorting to Sulfur 8 from time to time. What can I say? It works for me...

6. Trim your ends before unraveling twists
I haven't been doing this, but I did it on Sunday when I washed my hair and did a chunky twistout. Trimming the old, thin ends of the hair gave it a cleaner, more shapely look. Usually my twistout would include a little haze of random ends shooting out everywhere, looking frizzy and a bit unsightly. Considering that I was about due for a trim anyway, I decided to go ahead with it myself. That extra five minutes made a world of difference for me.  This is also the easiest way to dust your hair, IMO.

What are your fool-proof tips for a great twistout? Speak on it!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Make-up Break Pt. I

Lately *well, it was lately when I started this post... in November* I've been on a makeup/tool shopping spree (which is about to be halted unless I can find a sponsor LOL) and I've had some hits... and some misses. My focus has been mostly on the eyes. They say the eyes are the window to the soul right? Well what's a window without some beautiful treatments? :)

1. Eco Tools Bamboo 6-piece Eye Brush Set
From the site:
Highly sustainable bamboo handles
100% cruelty-free, soft taklon bristles
Labeling the brushes made this an instant win!
Recycled aluminum ferrules
Natural cotton and hemp cosmetic bag
Reusable storage pouch 
I picked this up for three reasons: it was cute, it was cheap, and I was tired of using the little sponge applicators that come with eyeshadow. My favorite thing about these brushes? On the handle it states which brush it is. That is great for a make up novice like me, because I wouldn't know the smudge brush from the shade brush, the crease from the highlight, and I'd be blending with whatever I grabbed. Although I don't have any other brushes to compare them to, they are a win in my book. The application is a lot easier and better than with the sponges, and at about $7.00 at Walgreens, they didn't hurt my pocket so I'm more likely to go with these than the expensive designer brushes I've seen.

2. Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer (shade: Sin)

from the site:
This miracle eyeshadow primer is unmatched by any other in the beauty industry! The genie in this bottle fulfills three wishes: eyeshadow that lasts, more vibrant and lasting color, and absolutely NO creasing. Apply Primer Potion to lids before shadow application. It dries down almost instantly (and invisibly), creating smooth lids that are super powered eyeshadow magnets.

The formula is full of silicone, which you beauty mavens know makes for a smooth and silky application. Packaged in a pretty genie bottle, our Potion applies with a magic wand and flocked applicator.

I think my expectations for this was a bit off. I assumed that a primer automatically meant that it would make my shadow colors really pop. I didn't really get that, or at least not how I expected. It didn't make much difference on my lid, but under the brow it did too much. Gave me a very clownish look. No bueno. I also have issues with application. Maybe it's just that I'm not used to it, but the brush totally threw me off. I ended up with too much in some places, not enough in others. Definitely a hassle when trying to get out the door in a hurry. However, this primer is not without merit. It kept my shadow from wearing off, which is great considering that I'm usually on the go from the time I put it on in the morning. I'll continue to use primer, but I don't think I'll be dropping another $18 a pop on this one. In the meantime, I'll be adding NYX Jumbo Eye Pencil in Milk to my artillery. According to what I've been reading/YouTube videos, that is THE thing to have to make those colors stand out. We will see!

3. Revlon Illuminance Creme Shadow (shade: Va Va Va Bloom)
Note: this is NOT Va Va Va Bloom. This is Black Magic, the one I really want to try.

From the site:
Discover an endless spectrum of luminosity. Play with all 4 shades and watch your eyes light up a new way every time!  

Va Va Va Bloom. I have no idea why this thing wont let me
turn the picture right side up! :-/
I had no real reason for buying this. It was an impulse buy. I was in Wal-Mart and said "oooh pretty colors!" and got it. I was surprised to see that they were cream shadows. Seeing this, I figured, "I bet these colors really pop!" Um, not so much.I had to put a ton of it on to see it, but then that meant creasing. The colors looked great in the packaging but on me they looked rather dull and blah. I think they would be awesome on someone with light skin, but they just didn't do it for me. Not even with the primer. I'm torn because I want to try some other shades but I don't want to be disappointed! The pallets I'm really feeling are Black Magic, Wild Orchids (although I probably won't try it since it looks a lot like Va Va Va Bloom), Precious Metals, Copper Canyon, and Twilight. I can't remember how much it was (my bad) but I don't believe it was more than $8. And since it was cheap, I may have to hunt down the Black Magic and give Revlon a second chance.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Relaxed Hair Must-Haves

I think I've said this here before, but can't remember for sure. When I had a perm, I didn't know how to do a thing with my hair, and didn't know what products to use. The most I did was wrap it, roll it, or put it in a ponytail. My mom was gracious enough to oil my scalp with Sulfur 8 after I got it done. That was it. I think I washed my hair all of ONCE back then, and that was because it was an emergency. I was in college and used whatever shampoo sample I had lying around from one of the campus events. Had no idea what I was doing! LOL

Well, for any permies who come across this blog, this link's for you! The Anti Hair Slave has a list of must-haves for you ladies that relax your hair. I was slightly surprised to see the same products/tools that are recommended for natural hair, but then again I guess I shouldn't be, huh? Anyway, don't say I never gave you anything! LOL

Monday, January 24, 2011


Forgive me fellow naturals, for I have sinned...

Okay that may be a bit strong! LOL But there are some Dos & Don'ts that I tend to break fairly often. I guess I should change my ways, but for now, let me just absolve my guilt by confessing.

1. I don't detangle as I should. *hears audible gasps from the crowd* I know, I know: it's horrible! But here's the thing: When I do wash & gos, I don't really have time to sit there and detangle. Hello, I gotta go! And when I do a "real" wash complete with deep conditioning, I try detangling while the conditioner is still in my hair and then I have to do it again after I rinse. That's about 40 minutes each time. Who has patience for that? Nuh uh, not Tori D.! And the killer part? As soon as my hair dries, it coils and tangles right back up. >_< Maybe this could be helped if I tried a new tool, like the Tangle Teezer I've been reading about lately or had a product with more slip (I'm out of conditioner and open to suggestions!)

2. I have not done a protective style yet. Yes, I wore my french roll up-do for a couple of days, but considering the fact that I still had the front out, I don't think that was actually a protective style. I would love to do some, especially some of the cute flat twist styles that I have seen. They look so simple and elegant... Unfortunately my skill level is 0 when it comes to those flat twists, honey! I'm not sure if it's due to my length, texture, thickness, or if I just don't know what I'm doing, but the results of my efforts are not anything I would want the general public to see! And I planned on keeping kinky twists in for most of the winter, but time and a tight budget have prevented that.

3. I usually don't do anything to my hair at night. I throw the bonnet over my fro and hope for the best in the morning. Sometimes it's okay after I shower (the power of steam y'all; it works!) and put a little leave-in conditioner on it. Other times? The results make me wanna cry! But doing a head full of two-strand twists can be tedious (especially when you come home tipsy at 2:00 AM) and as I mentioned up there ^ I still have not figured out flat twists... Or cornrows, for that matter.

4. I don't co-wash that often during the winter. I did plenty of co-washing during the summer when morning wash & gos were my go-to style.But since the weather is all types of cold right now, that's not happening. So I spray my Carol's Daughter Black Vanilla Leave-In on it daily, but honestly I don't think it does as well as a good thorough co-wash. Oh well, it is what it is until it warms up...

5. I still haven't figured out my hair type. Some naturals swear by hair typing, and there are products and tools that supposedly work better for certain types of hair.  However, my method of trial and error seems to be going pretty well--even without me knowing whether I'm a 3c or 4a or 5z. Besides, I have patches of hair that completely differ from other sections. It's not as if I'm going to put one product here, another there, etc. because it's been said that one is best for whatever type that patch is. Seems like too much work. I know it's kinky and coily. Good enough.

So what are the "rules" that you tend to break from time to time-- or all the time?

Friday, January 21, 2011

Natural Newbie Giveaway Winner!

Well the time has come for me to announce the winner of the Newbie Giveaway! I had some awesome submissions, and I'm thankful to everyone who participated. You all have some great stories, and I hope and pray that you all stay encouraged in this journey! Unfortunately, though, there can only be one winner (this time). And that winner is..... *drum roll*

Dawnica aka "Lady Hicks"!

I loved what she had to say about her decision to go natural and what she's discovered about herself in the time since deciding to transition. She writes:

My story started in September 2009. In route to my beautician to get a relaxer, I had thoughts in my head at this particular time where I wanted a change. At this point, my hair was down to my shoulders, so I was wanting some[thing] young and fun. I decided to get it cut into a long bob....but that not what I received. When I left, I went from a beautiful long tresses to a mushroom mess....not to mention I had a huge patch of hair "missing" in the back of my head.  Around that same time, I started reading Psalms 139 and begin to realize that God truly made me unique and here I was trying to be a copycat of what I thought I should be. That's when I decided to go natural...but unfortunately I received no support from family and friends. I got so much discouragement from people..which pushed me closer to what God truly thought of me. His Word says that I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Since that time I have encouraged and  helped others to the natural side thru videos and information I have found on the damaging effects of chemical relaxer and natural hairstyles that a "non" professional can achieve.I had my BC in July 2010 and I love my hair. In becoming natural and loving it, I have inspired 6 of my friends to make the switch to become natural and embrace the way God made them. I have also created a Facebook page "For Nappy Girls Only" as a forum to swap hair tips, share hair journeys and offer encouragement to other transitioning ladies. I love my hair and will continue to encourage others to love themselves the way God designed us:
as a
 BEAUTY- Be Exactly A Unique Type= YOU

Thank you for your submission Lady Hicks! You are a BEAUTY, inside and out! Be sure to email me an address to send your gift, as well as whether you'd like to receive a hair accessory or jewelry.

Who taught you to hate?

“Who taught you to hate the texture of your hair? Who taught you to hate the color of your skin? Who taught you to hate the shape of your nose and the shape of your lips? Who taught you to hate yourself from the top of your head to the soles of your feet? Who taught you to hate your own kind? Who taught you to hate the race that you belong to so much so that you don’t want to be around each other? ... you should ask yourself who taught you to hate being what God made you.”

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Natural Newbie Giveaway!

Hello everyone! If you're new to this whole natural thing,  have I got a goodie for you! Chris-Tia Donaldson, author of Thank God I'm Natural, has offered a copy of her book to one of my awesome followers! TGIN is a great reference tool at any stage of the natural journey, but I found it especially useful when I was just getting started. It's full of great tips, scientific info and product recipes. (You can find my review of her book here) In addition to that, I will also be giving away a surprise goodie: winner's choice of jewelry or hair accessory.

The rules for this contest are very simple:

1. Either a) be a transitioner, b) plan on doing the BC in 2011, or c) be a natural newbie--for the purpose of this contest, that's 12 months or less completely natural. Clearly this is on the honor system, but be honest! There will be other giveaways open to everyone, trust :)

2. Follow this blog through Google Friend Connect. Just hit that little button to the right.

3. Submit a short entry about your reason/inspiration to go natural. You may also submit a picture, whether it be pre-BC, post-BC or a picture of someone whose hair you admire. Submissions should be sent to toridblogs@gmail.com.

It's as simple as that! Entries must be submitted by January 18, 2011, and a winner will be announced on Friday, January 21, 2011. So hop to it natural newbs!

Psssst! Want another chance to win? Follow me on Twitter! (Leave a comment here so I'll know to count your follow as an entry). And for yet another way to win, tweet the following:

I entered @kinxnquirx Newbie Giveaway! Have you? http://is.gd/k5vyW

Sunday, January 2, 2011

The Blowout

Two Sundays ago I finally got the time (and the nerve) to straighten my hair. It was a little daunting to me, as my hair hadn't been straightened since late February/early March. But I figured why not? The weather was cooperating, and it's not like I'd been keeping my hair in a protective style anyway. It was as good a time as any. I took to blogs and books, trying to determine what the best route would be. I finally decided on the following method:

1. Wash and clarify.
I washed with my usual Optimum Oil Therapy moisturizing shampoo. (I think it's sulfate-free, but I'll have to double check that...) Then I followed up with a lemon juice & warm water clarifying treatment I saw in Thank God I'm Natural. Let that sit for about 10 minutes, then rinsed. Honestly, I didn't notice too much difference between when I clarify and when I don't. However, from my understanding, the difference wouldn't have shown at that point anyway.

2. Deep condition and detangle.
I applied my coconut and olive oil conditioners and let that sit for about 45 minutes. My plan was to go for about 20 minutes with the conditioner under the dryer, but I was too lazy to pull it out. (Sad, I know LOL) After letting it sit, I sectioned off my hair and got to detangling. Fortunately, it was relatively smooth going with minimal shedding. The exception, of course, is that odd patch of hair on the crown of my head that defies all typing, regimens and logic. That section took a lotta time and patience that I just don't have. Eventually, I got through it and rinsed. My hair was feeling all kinds of soft, smooth and slippery.

3. Blow dry and flat iron. (I.E., turn it over to Momma)
I wanted to tackle this beast on my own. I figured I might as well learn how to do it for myself... But what I learned is that straightening is something best left to the pros. Or at least to someone who can see what the heck they're doing. After blow drying about half of my head, I turned it over to my mom. When blow drying, I sprayed each section with both Carol's Daughter Black Vanilla Leave-In and Frizz Ease Heat Defeat. When flat ironing, my mom gave it another hit of the heat protectant. She also insisted on using a little bit of spray oil . I can't see where it hurt or helped.

I swear my mom was born to straighten hair. It did really well Monday and Tuesday... Wednesday the weather didn't wanna cooperate with me so it got a lil puffy. It was kinda down hill from there. By Sunday I had it slicked back with a phony pony attached.

the back after momma finished. why do the gray hairs always stick out?!



phony pony time!

I love the results, but it's not something that I'd want to do on the regular. I missed my curls too much!

Up-Do! French roll with bang

For several months now, I've wanted to wear my hair up. There are only so many times I could look at the puff, fro or twist out. I've attempted different styles but it just never really worked out for me. Sad, right?

Well, on Wednesday evening I was going through my blog roll and saw that Jenelle at Kinky Curly Coily Me! had done a YouTube tutorial on an up-do.

Of course I had to try it, so I got in the mirror and went to work. It took a little time and manipulation, but I finally got it. I figured out that I couldn't "roll" my hair to the left, though that's the way I've always tried it. Once I tried rolling/twisting it to the right, it was simple as could be. I also had to make a few minor changes.
I don't have any plain hair combs (how is that?) so I had to use a buttload of bobby pins. This was good and bad: good because I definitely had a secure hold, but bad because they had my head itching! Another change that I had to make was with the sides. I couldn't twist the sides; for some reason that just didn't work out for me. I ended up making a smaller french twist up top, then did some pulling, tucking, and pinning until I was happy with the look I had. And I definitely had to hit those edges with some Eco Styler.
Over all, my approach was a bit haphazard, but I was pleased with the results. I was able to wear it Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Unfortunately I couldn't quite get that roll going today. (I had to take it down before bed last night; the pins were killing me!) Here are the pix, but you'll definitely want to check out the tutorial to get a cleaner look. What's the verdict on this one? Although I didn't do a flower with this, I think I'll add my decorative combs to the french roll next time...

The back. Not the neatest or the best, but I was happy with it!

I wasn't aware that that part was so visible... oops!

Makes for an interesting side profile, no?

Close up of the front