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Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Work Wear: Body Con-fidence

Simplicity is always key to a good outfit! I scooped up this stripped body con dress at Forever 21 after work one day. I had been looking to buy on from H & M, they usually sell them for around $14 but I got this one for $12. As you can see there is not much to it. Even though its just a basic dress you can do a lot with it especially in the winter and fall because of its length and long sleeves. I paired this outfit with thick, black opaque tights, warm socks and leather boots for warmth and a flowy black sweater up top. I did wear this outfit to work, so I think it's totally work appropriate, even though it is form fitting. Instead of the sweater you could wear it with a blazer or cardigan with rolled up sleeves. I didn't want to be too formal so I work it with the sweater. 
If you wanted to turn this outfit from office to happy hour or even Friday Date night, I would switch out the flat boots for a sexy pair of black heels and lose the sweater/ blazer all together. 
I used the Shea Moisture curl enhancing smoothie on wet hair to get my twist out results, which I allowed to air dry over night. At this point I was still learning how to properly twist my hair while also eliminating straight strands so my curls don't have as much definition as they do now but I was still fierce and foxy with my Fro. 


Monday, February 17, 2014

Tales From the Roots: Current Hair Regiment

My current hair regiment is pretty simple to keep up with. Which is extremely important to a girl like me because I am lazy, I work long hours and I don't like having to comb my hair all the time. After my Big Chop it took me some time to find the right products to define my curls. Once I had that figured out I just needed to learn when to twist, when to wash and when to do nothing at all. So here I am, at the beginning of the fourth week post BC and I finally feel like I know what I'm doing.

I start my hair week on Sunday. Wake up, eat, do my usual routine of Sunday chores, which now includes washing my hair. I shampoo and deep condition my hair using anything I can get my hands on lately. I am running out of my trusty

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Working With What I Got

Now that the cut is done the real work begins. Figuring out what works for me and what doesn't! It's really easy to watch all the popular YouTube videos and look at all the pictures of the natural girls on Instagram and have curl envy or even curl delusions! Every natural girl won't have the easy ringlets or baby hairs that fall effortlessly into place or easy to manage hair and every product won't work in your hair the way it works in the next girls hair. I thought I was being realistic with my perception of my texture but I learned that even though I knew all about curl envy and delusion, part of me still fell for the fairy tale of the magic Afro. It's all good though. The only way to truly learn your texture is to practice!

Monday, February 10, 2014

Shape Up A Space


After
Before
One of my on going projects has been to create more use-able space in our unfinished basement. My room is pretty small and it is even smaller with the recent addition of a queen sized bed and a bigger television. And my closet you ask? The tiny thing is packed to the rafters. Absolutely no room for all of my shoes and my constantly growing wardrobe so I was forced to get creative.

Our basement is pretty big and a mostly unused space because it is unfinished and a little leaky, but you have to work with what you've got until you can get better! I  didn't but anything new, I just reorganized and found better uses for the things I already have...

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Work Wear: Baddie Blue

I really really Love this sweater. I got it on sale at New York and Company a little while ago during their 40% store wide sale. I believe this shirt was already on clearance which made it dirt cheap. I can't recall exactly but I believe this shirt was about $15! I really love the royal blue color, I don't have anything in this shade in my wardrobe, but I also love the faux lace detail on the shirt. On the bottom I'm wearing denim leggings, also from New York and Company. They are originally $50 but I got them for $30 the same day. I really love these because they look like jeans and feel like jeans but are comfortable & fit like leggings. I really want another pair but they only make them in two washes, this fabulous dark wash and a very ugly teal-ish blue. No. Thank You. I would've worn much cuter shoes but the non-stop snowing and frigid temps make it unwise to wear anything but UGGs or heavy snow boots. Such a shame! My hair is in a tight wash and go and my curls are defined with argan oil Eco Styler Gel. Not my favorite product, mostly because it makes my hair very crunchy, but I pulled the look off anyway. 

Friday, February 7, 2014

Natural Hair Journey Update: Introducing the Big C

The Master Plan was to transition for 12 months, wait until the warmer months so that I could wear Wash & Go's, even dye my hair to make the Big C even more drastic but sticking to that plan was more difficult than I thought it would be. After my second hair cut, at about 8.5 months natural, I really began to see the growth of my natural roots and I loved it but I didn't like how I had big volume at the roots and limp hair at the ends. I started to wear my hair straight almost 100% of the time which meant having to flat iron my hair more often. I wasn't too happy about this. My hair was cute but I was scared of heat damage and ruining my curl pattern. I decided to try a pre-poo to nourish my curls and the plan was to try a twist out but I never made it. I saw my curls and Afro texture and I couldn't help but cut it. I called my best friend and boyfriend, two of my biggest supporters and I was ready to start cutting. My mother was against it but I knew that it was something I needed to do in order to be happy with my hair.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Watch the Movie, Read the book

     I have been newly swept up into the Hunger Game craze, I know I’m late but I just watched the first movie on Netflix and saw the second in theaters last month. No spoilers, I promise, but the end of Hunger Games: Catching Fire included a huge twist and a cliff hanger ending. When I left the theater my boyfriend turned to me and said, “I feel like we should read the books, I want to know what happens next… like now”, which flipped a switch in my head. After seeing the first movie I considered reading the books but the second movie made that desire grow. I almost purchased the books; I had them all in my amazon kindle cart and was about to make my purchase when I suddenly thought, “What if this ruins the movies for me?”


Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Work Wear: black and sexy


I loved this outfit, mostly because of the shirt. I have already shown you these leggings, The front is faux leather and the back is made of black cotton. Even though these are leggings they are pretty thick, making them perfect for the cold Chicago weather. I got them from Target for $19.99. The shirt is really the key piece for this outfit. It is a modern twist on your average winter sweat shirt. The sleeves are made of black mesh along with a V shaped peek-a-boo hole under neath the collar. The shirt is cut to give a relaxed fit but at the same time flatter the shape of your hips. I got the shirt from JC Penney. It's made by Bisou Bisou, one of the really fashionable lines they have at JC Penney. For the past month or so they have been have 40 & 50% off sales for this particular line so I got this shirt on sale for $27.99 and another, which I will show you later, for $9.99. I paired it with a dark lip (Black Radiance 5117), black leather boots from bakers and my Afro, which was a two day old twist out. 

**Excuse my bathroom mirror pictures, I'm currently in the process of procuring the tools to create my own in-home studio for my blog ;-)**

Monday, February 3, 2014

Tales from the roots: The Pre-Poo

I first heard of the 'Pre-poo' on YouTube via MissKenK. After wearing her pixie cut straight she wanted to revert her hair to its natural curly state and moisturize it. I decided to try it because I had been wearing my hair straight and was paranoid about causing damage to my natural coils.
For those of you who don't know a pre-poo is done by saturating your hair in oils and conditioner before starting your shampoo-deep conditioner regiment. From my understanding you can use any combination of natural oils, ingredients and conditioners. You can read more about it on naturallycurly.com. I didn't want to go out and buy anything so I dug up some old natural products I was given a while back and some olive oil from the kitchen!

I mixed the extra virgin oil oil with Herbal Essences long term relationship conditioner and Burt's Bees super shiny conditioner (which smells amazing) and saturated my entire head. I left it on for about 15 minutes. It was amazing to see my straight hair curl back up under the oils and conditioner. After rinsing my hair was really soft so I guess the pre-poo was worth it!
                      


Sunday, February 2, 2014

Tales from the Roots: Curls to get the girls

First day 
 Here is another one of my transition styles. I have always loved a full head of curls and I've found that it is gorgeous at any hair length. Just a warning for naturals nazi's: I did use heat to achieve this style! Some folks believe that you shouldn't use heat on your hair but I'm not a part of that school of thought. I don't like putting heat on my hair too often but I do it once a month sometimes more.

To achieve this look I used my 1 inch Royale flat irons to tightly curl my hair. After I curled each section I rolled the hot hair around the orange perm rods. I ran out so I used flexi rods at the top but it worked out fine because they were about the same size as the other rollers. In the morning I fluffed and slicked my edges.
Day two

Amazingly I was able to wear my hair curly for an entire week without having to put heat on it again.

Each night I would pin curl the curls at the back of my head with bobby pins and put the flexi rods at the top. After a day or so the curls in the back started to loosen so I just added more rollers at night. By the end of the week my hair was basically trained. On Friday I didn't even wrap or roll my hair and the ends still had a bump to the ends in the morning.

I was satisfied with my hair, it was really easy to achieve and the upkeep was simple. Oil it and roll it back up at night. The first night sleeping was not fun but after that night I didn't have to use as many rollers. I've never tried something like this without heat and I'm not sure how it would work out on transitioning hair but Hey, anything is possible. I just chose to use heat because I don't have a problem with occasionally flat ironing my hair. At the end of the week I washed and tried out a pre-poo to help my hair revert, stay tuned for the results...