Conditioning in Braids

Monday, January 31, 2011

We are still on protective style mode, Mary is on her 3rd week and I am on my second. We promised to do a post on deep conditioning in braids. Below is a pictorial of the process.

1. On dry hair, pour diluted shampoo on your scalp. Use your fingers to massage the shampoo into your scalp and into the hair. I also co washed the braids with some left over Suave Tropical coconut conditioner. Make sure you rinse very well.

Braids with shampoo on the roots

Shampooed, cowashed and rinsed braids.

2. Apply your deep conditioner in the roots of your hair and then along the braids till where you feel your "real" hair ends. In this case I mixed the two deep conditioners with some Olive oil

Braids with deep conditioner

3. Leave the deep conditioner on for 45 mins then rinse out and use towel to dry hair

4.I sprayed my hair with conditioning spray, then massaged my scalp with a mixture of olive and castor oil. This keeps your scalp healthy and prevents dandruff.

5.For shine, I used Garnier Sleek and Shine Serum which gave my braids some shine.

Having clean braids feels so good, because as you guys know braids can get pretty stinky.
If any of you are on the protective style challenge, how is it going? Also if you are working out, how are you maintaining your braids

Happy Tuesday lovelies.

P.S Today is our 200th post. yay!!

Woman of the Week

Friday, January 28, 2011

In the past few days I have had bloggers block, I know there are many things that could I could post but I could not figure it out. I pointed this out to the beau and he mentioned that we should try and showcase women in Africa. His exact sentiments "Could be a good form of raising the profile of strong African women. I have to thank him for this lovely idea. Hence our first woman of the week is Jeanette Kagame

Jeannette Kagame is the first lady of Rwanda. Born on the 10th of August 1962, she is a mother of four. She became the first lady in 2000 when her husband Paul Kagame became president of Rwanda. Rwanda is a country that has gone through a lot in the past few decades but what we most remember is the genocide which happened between April and June 1994. During the genocide approximately 800,000 people were killed in 100 days.

With husband Paul Kagame meeting the Queen

Mrs Kagame through her philanthropic work is working with women and children of the genocide to build a bigger, greater Rwanda. A great cause for her is HIV/AIDS and works to create awareness and mobilise resources for this cause. She is a founding member of the Organisation of African First Ladies OAFLA which was started in 2002. Apart from that, she started the Imbuto Foundation which supports the development of a healthy, educated and prosperous Rwanda.

Launch of the Treat Every Child as your Own Campaign

The first lady is stunning. She always looks polished and her features are so beautiful especially her height. At 49 years old with 4 children she has kept very well. In all the pictures I have seen of her, she mostly has her hair in a bun and I believe she is relaxed. She favours the traditional clothing of Rwandese women called Mishanana. This is very similar to the Indian Sari but is made of two separate pieces i.e. a long flowy skirt with a matching scarf that is tied like a sash on one shoulder. The fabric that they use should be light like chiffon.

Excerpt from an Interview with Celina Schocken

The first lady of Rwanda explains how her country is defining itself post-genocide and the role Rwandan women are playing in the healing of society and the building of a nation.

Jeannette Kagame: I believe things are getting better, although we still have a long way to go. We also have to keep fighting for girls and women without forgetting that in many of our countries, especially in Rwanda where we had to start from zero, boys also need to be supported and men need to be mobilized to be part of the struggle for healthier, better-educated families. At the Imbuto Foundation, we have 1,000 disadvantaged boys and girls on scholarship, and with the understanding that girls face specific barriers to performance, each year we reward the best performing girls in every district to motivate them toward academic excellence. This is our way of contributing to government efforts. In an environment where there is so much need, every effort counts. It is particularly important that Rwandans be involved in solutions to our healthcare challenges as a nation. With committed governments, involved communities and effective coordination of global and regional partnerships, I have no doubt that Rwanda and Africa will win the battle for healthy, educated and skilled citizens.

Rwandese Children

Thursday Inspiration

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Source weheartit, tattoologist, vanessajackman, thesartorialist, swagger360, naturalbelle
Happy Thursday People!

So I am militia!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Mungiki members taking an oath
Hello there!

Hope you are all having a good week so far! I have just received a comment from a colleague that has thrown me. So picture this...I am grabbing my first cup of coffee when I meet two colleagues in the kitchen, a woman and a man. So I happily say Good Morning and the first thing they say is "Nyachomba, your hair looks nice" I say thanks and continue on my quest to wake up via caffeine.My hair is currently in braids tied up in a high ponytail.

The man says "Eish, Nyachomba its better than the way you normally look like a Mungiki" then the lady retorts "Its true Nyash, your hair normally looks..shaking head" and doesn't finish what she was going to say. Anyone who has met me knows that I am very bubbly and always happy so I just smiled, grabbed my wake up coffee and went back to my desk, started fuming and then told Mary the story via chat. For anyone out of Kenya, Mungiki is an aggressive politico-religious group that claim to the the true sons of the Mau Mau. They reject the trapping of western culture and grow their hair without combing which looks dirty and unkempt. This is different to free forming locs which have been discussed in this blog because they are washed and taken care of unlike those of the mungiki culture. They are a very strong force who are against alcohol and smoking, against women wearing short skirts and trousers and run cartels in small towns.

I have had time to think about this and to be honest at the beginning I was pretty sad by that statement, actually on the verge of tears (must be pms). Then I realised that, only a very insecure person who does not love themselves and their hair would say that. Whenever I go to work I always have my hair neatly in a bun or a neat twist out so why would anyone attack my hair. I never come to work with my hair unkempt or even closely resembling Mungiki locs (not that they are ugly btw). Calling me a member of Mungiki is not only rude but an attack on my culture and my hair.

I sincerely wish that Africans would stop thinking and believing that their hair is unkempt, ugly or undesirable. We have beautiful hair, whether wavy, curly, tightly coiled, kinky, locd. Stop attacking people, do not attack anyone's hair, skin colour or creed. I shall not make any apologies for my hair or how I keep it! I just needed to rant but I am sure you guys have a few comments that have made your angry, sad or disappointed maybe even a mixture of all three..please feel free to share in the comment section.


Featured Curly

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Hello lovelies,

Today we feature my sister from another mother, I love this girl! We are are alike in so many ways and being far away from her is pretty sad (she is in the USA). She has beautiful hair and even more gorgeous personality. Enjoy Gigee's Natural hair story.

1. Why and when did you first relax your hair? What is your hair story BEFORE your BC?

I first relaxed my hair in the year 2001. Before that I was spotting a short texturized do because I thought it suited me and my lifestyle back then since I was in boarding school and it made it more manageable and different (considering everyone was spotting a relaxed do). In 2001 I decided to go for a relaxer because I just loved the straight hair look so I spotted it until 2008 when I decided to chop it all off and go back to my natural roots but two months into it, I texturized it coz I had no idea how to take care of it and wanted something easy and malleable.

2. What made you decide to finally do the Big Chop? What were your feelings and thoughts when you did it?

I finally did the big chop in December 2009 and haven’t looked back since although I do sometimes get the urge to spot a short abstract relaxed cut (I soon get over it when I notice how not me it would be). I finally decided to get the chop because a whole lot was changing in my life. I had finally gotten a solid grasp of who I was and how I wanted to mold my life and so the timing seemed perfect to get a complete lifestyle change…body, mind, and soul so I went natural with my hair, and eating habits (I do sometimes indulge in processed foods of course, they are just so YUMMY). Having you(Nyachomba) as inspiration also helped a ton of course… I knew you’d been natural your entire life I adored the twists you’d make back in school and I adored the dreads phase as well and I admittedly cringed when you chopped them off but you came back strong with your yummy hair so in the spirit of adoration, I had to try it out as well! As far as my feelings toward going natural, well I was okay with it. I was never really attached to hair that much and I had an idea of what I’d look like so I just closed my eyes and took the leap!

3. What reactions have you received since doing the BC from your friends and family?

Well you’re part of my family and we had seen you through your style changes so it wasn’t really a big deal although my dad occasionally throws out the word “shaggy” here and there but since it’s on my head, I pay that no mind. My friends were pretty okay with it too. They were taken a back a little, especially the guys since there’s some sort of misguided notion that long hair makes one more feminine but they soon got over it when they realized how good I looked (lol it’s not vanity, just confidence)! My beau actually adores my natural tresses…he always cringes when I do protective styling like braids etc so as far as opinions go, I’m thinking I hit the jackpot!

4. What are your natural hair goals?

Hmm, this question threw me off the loop! My hair is a little thinner than I like so for now I am working on making it healthier and thicker and of course there is always hope for insane growth! I want it to grow so bad but I’m learning how to be patient with it. So in a nut shell, my goals are keeping my hair moisturized at all times which could be quite a challenge especially in a cold winter like the one we’re facing now, and keeping it as healthy as possible all of which lead up to growth!!

5. How long have you been natural?

It has now been one year one month and loving how fabulous the experience has been!

6. What inspired you to be natural?

The urge for a lifestyle change really. I had gone through a mental and emotional makeover and I wanted my physique to match up to the person I had become so what better way to do it than go natural! Another way to put it is I was grown and I wanted a grown look!

7. What’s your regimen like?

Now that it’s winter, I’m all about moisture although I do slack a little I must admit but I make sure to have a spritz bottle with some water, and condish (Vo5 moisture milks/Herbal Essence’s Hello Hydration) which I use every morning and night (when I’m not too tired) and then I seal it with Vatika Oil or Coconut Oil.I sometimes use Giovanni leave in conditioner but haven’t done so since the summer. I love stretched out hair so I put my hair in about 6-8 braids every night and unravel them in the morning. I try to use shea-butter when I do the braids. I wash my hair with either chamomile soap or aloe-vera soap and I co-wash my hair with the same conditioners mentioned above(Vo5 moisture milks, Herbal Essences Hello Hydration or Suave Coconut) and I am now deep conditioning with Ayurvedic herbs. Plan on trying out henna real soon though. I’m still trying to lock down a regimen with few products but I do suffer from the “let’s try this and that” syndrome.

8. What products are in your arsenal?

Guess I answered this question when talking about my regimen but my absolute love it list consists of Chamomille Soap, Vo5 moisture milks in strawberry…it smells divine! I also love Herbal Essences Hello Hydration for co-washing. For deep conditioning I am enjoying the ayurvedic treatments for now. I love the Giovanni Leave in Condish and I absolutely swear by Vatika Oil, Coconut Oil and Shea- Butter.

9. What do you like most about being all natural?

What I love most about being natural is that it matches who I am as a person and the lifestyle I have chosen to have.


Have a great Wednesday peeps. Gigee also has a blog about various issues..please follow and enjoy the read

3 Month Protective Style Challenge

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Great Weekend?

So we have decided to have a protective style challenge. The aim of the challenge is to have longer, thicker, healthier hair in 12 weeks. This will be done mainly through protective styling, henna and intensive deep conditioning.

How long will it run?
The challenge will run for 12 weeks and will involve being in protective styling for 3 weeks with a week off to enjoy your hair (you know how we naturals miss having our hair out). So that means 9 weeks of protective styling and 3 weeks to enjoy your hair.
January 24th-April 24th (However you can adjust this dates to suit you)

What will it involve
You can choose any protective style, such as braid with extensions, twists with extensions, cornrows with or without extensions and weaves.You can also do twists with your own hair should you so wish.

  • Daily Moisturising with glycerin, water and conditioner mix. You can add an essential oil such as tea tree to keep your scalp fresh
  • Cleansing with shampoo or chosen cleanser every 2 weeks or more frequent if you work out
  • Weekly or Fortnightly deep conditioning. We shall post tutorials on how to deep condition in braids
  • Scalp and hairline massages with an oil of your choice, preferably Castor oil every 2 days
  • Henna treatments on the week off as well as intensive deep conditioning
Should you wish to add any rules, please add a comment and we shall include it in the post

All the best ladies..and Have a great week

Ready for the Challenge Inspiration

Friday, January 21, 2011

In the next few days, Mary and I will be unveiling our new protective style challenge and would love to have you guys participate. I wanted to post pics that could inspire our challenge, Enjoy

Just realised I have not posted a picture of my ultimate girl crush (What I would give......)
Source, naturalbelletumblr, google image search

Happy Friday!

Sister Dearest

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Hey, how you doing,

When my sister was home for the holidays, we had our big ol' chunky braids done on the same day. She also had a blow-out done and man her hair just keeps getting thicker and longer! (shes on the henna train as well, another believer of the herb!)

Here are a few pictures of her blow out.

Dude, her hair has become a lot thicker ever since she started her henna regimen.

She hardly ever gets her hair blown out so she was also surprised at how much length she's attained.

Le Puff! :)

Her curl pattern is a lot like Nyachombas (3c). I'll be sure to post pictures of her reverted hair in its happy, curly, natural state along with her final chunky braids. I am loving those braids right now! Oh you guys should know that they age beautifully! Just call me the chunky box braids mascot!

Have a lovely day people!

Lashes a Go!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

CoverGirl Lash Blast Mascara

  • Instant volume and fullness
  • Smudge- and smear-proof
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Suitable for contact wearers
Get a blast of lush, volumized lashes! LashBlast's patented volume-boosting formula and patent-pending brush are designed to max out each and every lash, leaving you with the ultimate big-lash look. Source

Egads!!! No Make Up Face and No Mascara.

One Coat of Mascara Bam!

Two Coast of Mascara Kapow!!

Three coats of Mascara Lashes a GO!

My Thoughts

I am going to be very honest in my review of this product. The claims are well founded because with just one swipe of the huge eye popping brush, lashes look amazing. The mascara wand gives instant volume but not a lot of length however by the second coat of mascara you can definitely notice the length. By the third coat sadlythe mascara starts clumping and you can easily get spider lashes which is not a good look unless you want to look like a wag or girl from Essex (Not a good look)

Note: You have to be very careful with that brush because it so big you could possibly joust with it! Don't want you popping your eyes.

This Mascara is not available in Kenya as far as I know....but soon enough you will be able to buy it off us (Coming Soon).

Youth in Revolt

Today we showcase one of the coolest 16 year old I know, she has fully embraced her hair despite living in areas where it is against the norm to have natural hair. She should also try and model (you reading Lil Miss K, not to be confused with Miss K) you have to put that height to good use. So proud of you though.If only more of us were brave enough at 16 to make such decisions!

1. Why and when did you first relax your hair? What is your hair story BEFORE your BC?

I think my mum said she starting relaxing me and my sisters hair when we were 4.It was simply easier for her to do because she didn’t have a lot of time on her hands to sit through and comb all that 4b/c hair amidst all our oohhs and owws.

So it was relaxed and whatnot and about shoulder length. We used to live in Kyrgyzstan (Central Asia)*hint hint* no Black people to do our hair so our hair evolved around a routine: braid cornrow (all back), undo, wash, relax every 3 months approx. The winter time (-25 C) didn’t do us any good either and there was no much we could do about it.

After so many years of relaxing, I started feeling this sore patch on my scalp that always hurt when I touched it. I think it was broken skin or something but I’ll never know. Since I stop relaxing though, the soreness in that area has magically disappeared!

Told you this girl could be a model (Relaxed Hair 2009)

Relaxed Hair 2008

2. What made you decide to finally do the Big Chop? What were your feelings and thoughts when you did it?

AHHH what made me decide to do the BIG CHOP..hmm..I think the first time I heard about it, some research was saying relaxing hair can cause cancer or something like that so I was kind of curious about that. Then I stumbled across your blog and the plenitude and plethora (new vocabulary words from school) ehem*thank you..thank you..applause later* of natural hair info was simply effusive and I started getting excited, jumpy and jittery(a good thing).

And also, I’m all for the politics around why black people relax their hair and it breaks me when they say ‘’ohh it’s not manageable.., you can’t do anything to it..THATS JUST UGLY S***. blah blah*

People forget to see that it’s our roots that we have forgotten and the fact that we are trying to be people we are not. We willingly discard the beauty that is God’s gift to us and are constantly searching for something else. How else will we be ever satisfied? Africans need to start claiming what’s rightfully theirs. So right now I don’t know if the word is content but I am grateful and content for the hair that I have. People can talk all they want but at least I’ve accepted my identity and I bask in its glory whether you like it or not ;P

So I cut it December 2009...a new look for 2010 I was saying. I was also 14(I’m going be 16 next month just so that y’all mark that on your calendars) and I never felt so free in my whole life. I went to the salon with my mum and sister and aunt and cousin and as the lady was cutting it I was laughing! So much joy! I was just laughing! My aunt and cousin thought I was probably the weirdest relative ever. My aunt was even making a joke about all that money we used to relax my hair all the time and how we could have built that dream house we always wished for with it. I was simply laughing my head off! No regrets.

I look up close in the mirror now and I just adore my curls. They are so pretty oh my gosh! I now have the chance to fall in love with my curls for the first time.

Little Miss K's Curl Pattern

3. What reactions have you received since doing the BC from your friends and family?

UHm the reactions have been mixed to say the least. My first week at school after cutting it(low cut) most of my friends liked it and said I looked like a model..(but of course)*blush*The ‘’senior citizens’’ in my family as my sister likes to call them don’t see the beauty in it I don’t think. It’s either combed all neatly or it’s not presentable at all. They always complain about it when I don’t see anything to complain about. When I go home to Ghana during the summer the friends there are also used to the dress code of their secondary boarding schools that only allow short cropped ‘‘neat’’ hair...whatever that means. Your hair grows more than 2 inches and it’s still not cut? Please just don’t bother coming to school.

So here I am with my more than 2 inches hair and they don’t understand. So I have had a few not so pleasant comments but I’m still growing my ‘fro cuz the sky is the limit :P

Kiki and Her Sister (Yes, she got her sister to also go natural)

4. What products do you currently use?

I use a bunch of natural oils on my hair to seal in moisture because it’s so dry in Senegal it’s deadly! I also use the Organic root Stimulator Olive Oil Aloe Shampoo until I find a sulphate free shampoo (fingers crossed soon!) Also the Organic Root Stimulator Hair Mayonnaise and lots and lots and lots of Shea Butter.

5. What are your natural hair goals?

I want big ass hair!!!I know there’s nothing special about that ‘cuz most people also want that but yeah..BAA.

And I guess with BAA comes length. I want to be able to straighten it and curl it and do errthangg with it if you know what I mean...yes you do.

I’m also trying to use only natural hair products so that it just feels more authentic? Does that make sense? And finally I want others to see the beauty in natural hair through the way I carry myself with my own hair

6. What is the best thing for you about being natural?

Well for one, I’m different from all the other girls in my school who either have weaves or are relaxed. So I guess I stand out. well..:p .Secondly,I don’t have to be at a salon for more than 3 hours because I’m doing the whole package(washing treating relaxing blow drying..the whole SHABAM.)nah uh not for meh. Lastly I can rock different styles on a daily basis: short hair when I wash it, twist outs, cornrow, just downright big afro hair! Full Stop. Cuz I’m just that fabulous! teehee <3

My hair is about 6 inches long when stretched but because it’s extremely coily it does not look like it. I love my hair!

Kiki on the right rocking a TWA, May 2010

October 2010, (So jealous of you living by the beach)

Big up to you Kiki!


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