Henna Dye Vs. Chebe Powder For Longer, Stronger 4c Natural Hair

During my transition to natural hair, I relied heavily on Henna treatments to give me some manageability. I have since reduced my treatments, but if my hair feels coarse, I pull out some Henna, protein or clay of some sort to get it back on track.

Many African tribes use some sort of powder or clay for styling, protection from the elements, and hair growth. I was recently introduced to Chebe Powder and was excited to use it since it reminded me of a treatment; Musila, that women from my tribe use. Musila is similar to Himba clay.

I decided to compare Chebe Powder and Henna Dye since they are very similar and Chebe powder has become increasingly popular in recent months. Both products are supposed to help grow and strengthen natural hair, but I liked my Chebe experience more. An update will follow. I also used my LuxeOrganix Cowash and Deep Conditioner to help keep my hair feeling hydrated. I will track my progress, but let’s compare the two.

INGREDIENTS

Although the two smell similar, they do have different ingredients based on plants that are native to each region. The lists of ingredients are as follows

CHEBE POWDER

Origin: Chad, Africa

Ingredients: Lavender Croton, Prunus Mahaleb, Reisin, Clove, Gum Arabic, Vegetable Oil, Perfume.

 

HENNA DYE

Origin: India, Asia

Purpose: Promotes hair growth, darkens, and conditions hair

Ingredients: Natural mehndi, Amla, Brahmi, Bhringraj, Polysaccharides.

INSTRUCTIONS

Although, I have done slightly different things, here are the instructions.

CHEBE

Directions: Take 100 grams of your favorite cream, mix with 100 grams of oil of your choice and add a teaspoon of Chebe Powder. The first step is to get the hair wet using regular water and alternate between the hair grease mix that you just made and the Chebe Powder until hair is fully saturated. Then re-braid the hair and once that braid is done, wet the hair again with water. Repeat that routine every 3 to 5 days. Do not put on the scalp.

  • Please do not put on the scalp. Also, using a cream makes it easier to apply than simply using oil.

HENNA

Directions: Pour into glass or plastic bowl. Pour hot water or tea to facilitate dye release. Add oil for softness. Wait 2-3 hours for dye to release. Wear gloves and apply to your hair. Keep in for a least 3 hours.

  • You can wash your hair before hand and also use a deep conditioner after. This helps with softness.

COMPARISSON

Although, I have had good experiences with both products, there are notable similarities and differences.

SIMILARITIES

  1. Smell: They smell similar, but they do have a faint difference.
  2. Easy Detangling: I have had an easier time detangling my hair after using both products.
  3. Clarifying: Although both are used in the prescence of oil, I did notice that washign them out with a shampoo made my hair feel cleaner than most pre-poo treatments.
  4. Texture: They have finer powders and thicker flakes.

DIFFERENCES

  1. Preparation Time: Chebe powder is ready to use immediately after mixing, whereas Henna requires a few hours for the dye to release.
  2. Treatment Time: Both can be used for an average of 3-4 hours, but Chebe can be kept in the hair for a week at a time in braids or twists while you protective style. Henna typically requires only a few hours to a day. The maximum time required depends solely on the user, but an overnight treatment would be ideal for those who simply don’t have the time.
  3. Consistency: Henna has a smooth consistency once mixed, and Chebe is more grainy.
  4. Dye vs. No Dye: Henna does have a reddish natural dye in it. This makes hair appear to be more vibrant, but will affect your ability to color it in the future. Chebe has no dye, so if you enjoy experimenting with color, you still have options.
  5. Curl Loosening: Regular use of Henna can alter your natural curl pattern due to the weight that the dye adds when it’s impregnated into your hair shaft. Chebe powder does not have a curl loosening effect. Some people may want a looser texture while others, want to keep their kinks, curls and coils intact. Frequency of application is up to you and the loosening effect in not permanent. Henna does fade over time.
  6. Degree of Messiness: Nobody wants to have to buy new clothes or furniture as a result of a hair treatment. both Henna and Chebe are messy during the application process, but Henna stains skin, fabric, and fixtures, whereas Chebe just leaves oil. If you use either one, go in the bathroom, but also make sure to take extra care with Henna as it can easily stain the things you love.
  7. Dryness: Even with oil, Henna is drying on my hair, but Chebe is not.

THE VERDICT

I have had good experiences with both products, but Chebe powder is the clear winner. It’s quicker to apply and I can choose to flat twist my hair and wear a wig until I’m ready to remove it. I don’t have to spend more than two hours doing the treatment and I can split my time up based on my schedule. Also, my hair feels significantly softer than it does after a Henna treatment. While Henna has saved my hair from detangling struggles, it does have a dye in it as well as curl loosening properties. Dryness can be fixed with other products, but I have no interest in coloring my hair or changing its natural pattern. I may do Henna treatments every once in a while, but Chebe powder treatments will be part of my bi-monthly routine.

 

 

 

Heatless Broke Girl Curls : 4c Natural Hair Hack w/ Grocery Bags ( Video Tutorial)

We’ve all been broke before. Heck, I’m still broke and times are hard.

I decided to do a start to finish hair curling tutorial using common household items instead of hair products on my natural hair. Remember brown paper bag curls? I just used plastic grocery bags instead since nobody ever runs out of them. I wanted to challenge myself with these heatless curls especially since it’s so difficult to curl 4c hair from scratch and get smooth, defined curls. Plus, not everyone can afford the perfect products.

PRODUCTS USED:
1. Raw African Black soap used as a shampoo: http://go.magik.ly/ml/60od/
P/s. I woke up like that…shiny face and all.

2. Vanity Planet Groove Scalp massaging shampoo brush: https://www.vanityplanet.com/products/scalp-massaging-shampoo-brush
Use code “Lulu50” to get 50% off. It really cleans my scalp.

3. Olive oil mixed with sunflower oil or whatever cooking oil you have. I forgot how good this stuff is on my scalp and hair. It really did wonders with detangling. It’s going back in my staple products…plus it’s CHEAP! Get some in the cooking isle.

4. Bath & body Works lotion: Morroco Orchid and Pink Amber. I think they discontinued it.

5. Walmart, Target, The Dollar Tree, and Publix grocery bags. lol.

6. The ghosts of bobby pins past. I still can’t believe that I found 38 missing bobby pins!

I really enjoyed this experience and look forward to more challenges in the future that I will definitely share with you.
What products do you use when you run out of your faves?

I Curled My Hair With Edge Control? Flawless By Gabrielle Union

Two weeks after I flat ironed my hair with FLAWLESS by Gabrielle Union products, I still had some stretch and I wanted to keep it that way. I mean, it feels good to glide your fingers across your scalp without worrying about the “kinky resistance.” The product line does not cater to heatless hairstyles, so I used what I had to create a hair curling cream. By mixing their edge control gel, blow dry cream and oil treatment, I was able to curl my hair beautifully while avoiding dryness.

I used my favorite hair curlers; spoolies, to curl my hair and I absolutely loved my results. Plus my hair smelled like heaven. I look forward to seeing what Gabrielle Union comes up with next. Hopefully, we can have a full line of products to fit more needs.

How To Flat Iron 4c Natural Hair : FLAWLESS By Gabrielle Union Hair Products

I got a chance to try Flawless beauty hair products to blow dry and straighten my 4c natural hair. I haven’t used heat in a while, so I’m going to take you through the process of safely flat ironing your hair using these amazing products that are designed with textured hair in mind.

 

 

FLAWLESS by Gabrielle Union Products Used
1. Moisturizing shampoo:
It’s a sulfate-free shampoo that rebalances and hydrate dry hair. All of the hydrating products are rich in Argan, Avocado and Marula oils.
2. Hair Repair Masque:
This repairs and strengthens dry, damaged hair. It’s important to use it prior to heat styling to prevent damage.
3. Moisturizing Conditioner:
It detangles and hydrates dry hair. I use it after the masque to restore balance.
4. Oil Treatment:
This is a great pre-poo that nourishes and prevents breakage. It also is very lightweight with a lot of slip and can be used as a detangler.
5. Blow Dry Cream:
It smooths and protects hair form heat. Just a little bit goes a long way.
6. Heat Protection Spray:
It shields the hair, defrizzes and protects up to 450 degrees.
7. Edge Control Gel:
It control and tames flyaways.

This product review was sponsored by Flawless Beauty and you can connect with them on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter @FlawlessHairDay

 

Curling Hack : When You Don’t Have Enough Rollers : Heatless Flexi rods On 4c Natural Hair

I don’t know about you, but I just can’t afford 60-100 flexi rods for the perfect, bouncy, scarecrow looking flexi rod set. I always wondered how some people manage to sleep in them. I want to try different kinds of rollers and flexi rods have been on my list for a while, so I came up with a quick hack to get yummy curls on my 4c natural hair and sleep comfortably with only 16 rollers used.

PRODUCTS USED:
1. Annie Soft Twist Rollers/ Flexirods- The blue ones: http://go.magik.ly/ml/40ya/
2. Aphogee Style and Wrap Mousse: http://go.magik.ly/ml/3×46/
3. Entwine Couture Creme Jelle’
STYLER: https://www.entwinecouture.com/styler-1
4. Ampro Shine-N-Jam Silk Edges Edge Control: http://go.magik.ly/ml/4uzi/

WHAT I DID:
I literally curled my hair in a row of small sections. I curled four small sections on one roller and closed it like a regular flexi rod. This methods allows you to have smooth roots and defined, separated curls when you remove the roller. I slept in them overnight and removed them the next morning. The video above gives all the details.

How do you do flexi rods?

How To Fix Products That Don’t Work On Natural Hair – Dryness, Flakiness, and More

We’re NOT gonna waste money in 2017! Gather all your drying, flaky, USELESS products and join me on my our journey to fix them all.

This post is dedicated to all my naturalistas who have struggled with products that don’t work. Clearly, the companies didn’t get the correct formulas, so we’ll just have to make our own. I even included a video at the end of this post so that you can see a demo.

SHAMPOOS
When it comes to shampoos that don’t work, you have three options:

1. Pre-poo: If you do a pre-shampooing treatment with a light oil, your hair will feel softer.
2. Add oil: Mixing your shampoo with a little bit of oil and you’ll have a nourishing, conditioning shampoo session. Instant cowash!
3. Dilute it: Decide on an amount of shampoo that you want to use, then dilute it in a squeeze bottle. This will prevent you from using too much and drying out your hair.

In my tutorial, I used Irresistible Me’s Liquid Gold Shampoo and LuxeOrganix’s Moroccan Argan Oil Sulfate Free Shampoo. They both smell wonderful, but do nothing for my hair. I love African Black Soap and any kind of hair mask.

CONDITIONER
All conditioner’s smell good and fell soft until you rinse them out. One such conditioner is LuxeOrganix Moroccan Argan Oil Conditioner. It smells heavenly, but it does nothing spectacular for my hair. It seemed fine when I first used it, but I have found better products. What I do is add a little bit of oil for slip and softness.

OIL
Not all oils are created equal. Some are heavy and others are light. Some have slip while others are sticky. Each has a purpose ranging from scalp health to heat protection. When an oil does not work, you can do the following:
1. Hot oil treatment: Any oil is good enough for a hot oil treatment or pre-poo.
2. Body oil or lotion: Many oils can double as body oils or can be mixed in your favorite lotions to help your skin look soft, supple, and dewy.
3. Thinners: If the oil is light weight, use it to thin or dilute thick oils like castor oil. You can also mix the oil with shea butter or coconut oil so that they don’t solidify easily.

LEAVE-IN CONDITIONER
I’ve only ever loved one leave-in conditioner. All others are just okay. I usually use leave-in conditioners when I want to detangle my hair and I mix them with an oil or serum for slip. It’s the perfect combination.

SERUMS
I like to think of heat protection serums a mini protein treatments to prevent hair loss problem since they do have proteins in them to give your hair strength. I use them two ways:
1. For slip: They give more slip than other oils when detangling your kinks.
2. Mix them with a blow out cream or heat protection spray before blow drying especially if you are prone to dry hair.

MOISTURIZERS
Sometimes, I wonder if companies create moisturizers for the sake of saying they created one, because I rarely encounter a good one. Here’s what I do:
1. Add glycerin. My mom would put it in hair products and baby lotion so that I could have soft hair and skin. Your hair will thank you.
2. Mix it with a gel. Usually, a moisturizer mixed with gel becomes a pretty good styling cream.

STYLING PRODUCTS COMBINATIONS
Styling products are hit or miss with my kinks. I’ve found that combining two or more types of products seems to work for curls lasting at least 4 days. My general rule of thumb is mixing light and heavy products. Here are a few to try from my least to most favorite:
1. Moisturizer and gel
2. Mousse and gel
3. Mousse/ wrap lotion and heavy styling cream
I’ve never tried a heavy styling cream and a gel before, but I will definitely look into it.

EDGE CONTROL
There is only one thing to do with a useless edge control that has no hold; slick your ends when you roller set your hair. You will have a smooth set with perfect ends.

It’s pretty clear by now, that the first answer to your hair styling products is OIL. To see these tips in tutorial form, watch the video below.

How To Turn Crochet Braids Into A Weave? Perfect For Faux Locs, Twists & Curls.

There I was crocheting a blanket for my friend with some brand new pre-twisted hair sitting in a box waiting for me to install it. A few minutes passed and I was already getting bored. Before I knew it, I was crocheting my twists into the blanket. I’ve made wefts using crochet braids before, but I never actually thought to crochet my hair into a weft. Over the next few days, I experimented with locs and bohemian curly hair as well. Averaging 35 minutes to an hour for a full head of wefts, this new method would definitely save some time and make my hair last longer. Let’s go over the process:

Hair Used:

Freetress Crochet Braid Pre-Twisted Flashy Curl: 9 packs in the color TTDKPU
Bohemian Curl 18”, Motown Tress 3X PRE-LOOPED Handmade Kanekalon Crochet Braid: 3 packs in the color 2
Urban Beauty Naturall Crochet Loop Goddess Faux Locs Braid 12″: 10 packs, 8 in the color 1B, 2 in the color 1B/350

The Pattern:

If you read crochet, this is the pattern that I used:

Ch 1 * insert hook into braid, YO and draw through braid, YO and draw through 2 lps on hook, ch2, rep from * across to ch2 until you have your desired length

You don’t have to chain twice. That’s just for spacing so that the braids can have a nice density and you avoid using too much hair. How much you chain in between is totally up to you.

What’s The Point?

1. I decided that since faux locs, twists and curly hair tend to get messy faster than straight or braided hair, I want to be able to install the hair without accidentally snagging it with my latch hook.
2. It only takes 35 minutes to an hour to actually make the wefts for 7-8 packs of hair followed by an hour or two to install when I’m taking my time.
3. I can install the hair evenly and easily remove it to reuse it later or turn it into a wig.

I have enjoyed experimenting with this new method. I’ve made half wigs and done a sew-in. It’s definitely a time saver that I will be taking advantage of in the future. Who knows, maybe I’ll debut it using box braids next time.

How To Pack Light – ONE PURSE, Two Nights, 10 Travel Tips

Packing light is so convenient for those of us who don’t want to worry about baggage fees, checking in, or possibly losing our luggage. It’s also a practical thing to do if you’re only going to be away overnight or for the weekend. I packed everything from clothes to makeup in my Teddy Blake handbag. I recently had a trip to Washington, DC and I didn’t want the fuss that comes along with packing too many items. The more items you take along with you, the more items you have to account for before you return…especially if they are expensive. I can think of several better ways to pass time. Here are 10 travel tips and a video that will help you on your next adventure.

MY TOP TEN TIPS
1. Use Ziploc bags – Ziploc bags make it easy for you to plan your outfits. You can put everything that you need for one outfit in one bag. Also, they are great when you want to keep dirty items away from clean items or makeup away from clothes.
2. Pack a dress – It seems silly, but a dress saves space, looks great at dinner, and counts as a complete outfit.
3. Are you scheming? Make it a point to have the same color scheme with your outfits so that way you can wear the same coat, shoes, or jeans with everything. I try to wear fitted blue jeans on the first day. Jeans can be worn every day and you can just change the top since tops don’t take up much space. If it’s cold, wear the same coat or jacket every day. Make sure these pieces match all your outfits. These are things you will never have to worry about packing because you’re wearing them. Also, keep it simple.
4. Carry an extra shirt or two – An extra top, sweater, or blouse will help give the illusion of a complete outfit change and if your jeans can go from dressy to casual, even BETTER!
5. Wrinkle-free is the way to be – Try to select clothing that does mot attract wrinkles. Most hotels have irons, but very few irons actually work like your tricked out steam iron at home. I had a photo shoot in New York last year, and stayed at Row NYC Hotel. Needless to say, I spent entirely too much time ironing that morning. The iron was old and needed to be let go. You don’t need that kind of stress, not on a work-related trip…not on any kind of trip.
6. Cute, comfy flats matter – I always have flats with me when I travel. They can go to work, dinner and even sightseeing with you. The best part is you don’t have to carry additional shoes if all your outfits follow the same general look.
7. Never forget makeup essentials – My basic selfie-ready makeup goes as follows: face primer, under eye concealer, soft matte foundation, pressed or loose setting powder, eye shadow, eyeliner (doubles as a lip liner), mascara, ONE lipstick, lip balm, tweezers, and essential brushes. These don’t take up too much room as seen in the video above.
8. Toiletries & extra undies – Bar soap, toothbrush, toothpaste, brush/comb, hair products (if needed), lotion, face lotion (optional), deodorant (NOT optional), perfume. I personally prefer using SCENTBIRD for my perfume because they bottle up any perfume you want in a small, stylish tube for cheap. Never forget your personal hygiene and always carry extra underwear. Bras can be worn for two or three days, so you don’t need extras unless you have an accident or a complicated top. Try to keep is simple.
9. CASH IS KING! – Not everyone takes credit cards. For short trips, I usually carry $100 for food and essentials in addition to my credit card. You can take more or less depending on your needs, but don’t keep all your money in the same place.
10. Wear a watch – Your phone can die, get lost, etc. Not every location has a place where you can easily just look up and tell time. It also makes you look like you have your entire adult life together. Watches are also stylish, but don’t draw too much attention. You don’t want people looking at your jewelry and knowing that you’re far away from home. Be safe.

Here are my top 10 tips. I have plenty more, but these are the essentials and everything else is extra. Remember, If you pack everything in a purse, then you wont have to pack a purse and if you forget something, you can buy it where you’re going.

Safe travels, xo.

5 Reasons To Use African Black Soap Instead Of Shampoo

I’m on a mission to find my top 5 shampoos and I think I’ve stumbled upon number 1; African black soap. I really should have thought of this sooner, but I always forget to take the obvious path when it comes to hair care. Black soap is great for my skin and it’s even better for my hair. Here are 5 reasons why.

Ingredients

This organic African black soap is sold by Incredible By Nature. It doubles as a shampoo and body wash with all-natural ingredients like:

Water, Palm Oil, Cocoa Pod, Palm Kernel Oil, Coconut Oil, Unrefined Shea Butter, Plantain Skin Ash, Purified Water, Natural Vitamin E, and Natural Sodium.

I typically look at the first 5 ingredients to tell me what the product is mostly made of. Unlike most shampoos with sulfates, African black soap does not rob our kinks of the oils that we need. It actually uses oils to help clarify and soften our natural hair. #Winning

Naturally, if you can’t access this product, you can make black soap shampoo from the bar because the bar is very soft and can easily dilute in warm water.

 

Softer Hair!

Who doesn’t want soft hair? Listen! My 4c Natural hair will dry up so fast, you’d think it was straight out of the Sahara. Honestly, I’ve always been amazed by people who say my hair looks soft. Like, have you touched it? Do not be deceived. One of the first things that I noticed was how soft my hair felt. I literally packaged some in a bottle so that my sister could get the experience and she loves it too. My hair was so soft that I skipped on conditioner the first time that I used this shampoo. Don’t do what I did, but I was just too excited.

 

 

 

 

Great For Scalp Health

lace hair replacement systemsThis picture is of individual crochet box braids that I recently installed. Two days after washing, blowdrying and oiling my scalp, it still looked fantastic. African black soap is great for your skin and your scalp is made of skin, so naturally, it will be great when deep cleansing your scalp and keeping it flake-free.

 

 

 

 

 

It Rinses Out Fast & Clean

When I say this shampoo was gone in 60 seconds, I mean it was gone in 60 seconds! Okay, it was more like 2 minutes, but it rinsed out so fast, that I had to look back several times to confirm that the water ran clear. It lathers really well, but the lather doesn’t linger for forever and a day. It’s a quick and very clean rinse with no film or residue. Plus, you don’t have to rinse and repeat. One shampoo session gets the job done.

 

 

 

 

 

Kinks DEFINED!

https://fr.newhairline.com

 

GURL!!! I think this may be the first key to unlock a bomb wash-n-go. Usually, when I wash and air dry my hair, it looks fuzzy. This time, I could see my kinks. If I do this, then apply products that help with curl definition, I might be in wash-n-go heaven in summer 2k17. 4c Natural hair looks great, it’s just that it can be hard to get definition with products. This just might be the first step.

Check out the video below to see the black soap in action.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DIY Dark Brown Balayage At Home With A BRUSH!

I love a good balayge or ombré, but they can be pricey if you get someone else to color your hair. I recently did a dark brown Balayage on a wig from Uni Wigs. I think it’s an easy way to get a gorgeous, natural color without too much commitment. Of course, you can go lighter with stronger developers especially if you want a blonde balayage or if you want to add some other color and it can be done in four easy steps at home.

Here’s what you need:

  1. Your natural hair or extensions.
  2. Hair brush
  3. Rat tail comb (optional)
  4. One ‘n Only powder lightener 16oz
  5. Argan oil 20 volume cream developer
  6.  Mixing bowl
  7. Gloves
  8. Long tail bleach and tint brush

Step 1: Mixing Ingredients

You want to put two or three scoops of powder lightener in a mixing bowl and then mix in some 20 volume developer. If you want a blonde balayage, use 40 volume developer. Mix the ingredients together with a bleach brush to your desired consistency. I prefer mine to be like a milkshake because I don’t want it to be too runny. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Step 2: Color The Ends First

Starting at the ends, brush your hair and make sure you coat the strands thoroughly so that the color is even. Make sure you stop 6-8 inches from the roots or wig cap.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Step 3: How To Color The Roots

For the remainder of the hair, you want to grab your section of hair taught and apply color to each side with a brush, but you can use a comb for precision. The mini sections that you color should be approximately 1 centimeter thick or smaller. You can also color a small section in the middle. Make sure the streaks that you color are colored evenly until they reach the hair that is already colored. You don’t want any gaps.

Lightly brush any hair that hasn’t got any color on it. You don’t want  to coat the strands, you just want to lightly brush your hair so that it is somewhere in between the light color and your original dark shade. Everything must blend well.

 

 

 

Step 4: Don’t forget your edges

Lightly brush your hairline as well so that you don’t have harsh streaks. Just a little goes a long way. Wait 20-35 minutes then rinse it out. Follow up by washing and conditioning your hair, then style it the way you’d like.

Check out my YouTube video to see how to achieve this look.