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Monday, November 24, 2014

Tales From the Roots: Length Check and Update

   The fall season has really set in here in Chicago and the winter is coming quickly around the corner. With the brisk air and low humidity I decided that this was the perfect time to straighten my hair. So far I have only done this twice in my journey, once in April 2014 and now in Oct-November. The first time it only lasted about a week, maybe two because of the humidity but this time around I've been having more luck.

     Because heat damage is a very real possibility, especially when you don't know what you're doing and if you're impatient, I decided to go to my beautician, Valencia, to get my hair straightened.  After having it straightened in April all of my curls and coils reverted perfectly after washing so I trusted her to not damage my hair in any way while applying heat to it. In the process of straightening I also got my ends clipped, which was very needed, and cut into layers.

     I was very pleased with the result and was able to see a difference in the length of my hair right away.

     Since my appointment I have only applied additional heat twice. The first time was a week later just to freshen my curls. I also ended up flat ironing the hair at the nape of my neck, or the "kitchen", because sweating during sleeping and moisture during showering caused the hair to get damp and start to revert back to its natural state. Both times I was sure to moisturize my hair and add plenty of heat protectant.

Outside of this I have not used any heat to maintain my straight hair. Each night before bed I part my hair into big sections and moisturize my hair. I apply a very small amount of Cantu Leave in and either Argan or Grapeseed oil to each section of hair, massage from root to tip, making sure to get some of the oil on my scalp. After this I comb the section and wrap it around a medium sized flexi rod. I usually use 5 or 6 each night, making sure to position them as high on my head as possible, something like the pineapple method, which makes it easier to sleep on them. In the morning I untwist and use my fingers or a wide tooth comb to style.
The flexi rods always give me great curls that last all day long. They really are a great alternative to using heat or even hard rollers which are horrible to sleep on.

So far my hair is responding well to being straightened. It is still very moisturized, shiny and bouncy. the only problem is that it is starting to itch and become a little flaky. I think I will try to make the style last 3 weeks but I can't make any promises at this point.

I do plan on getting a sew-in weave for a protective style to give my hair a break for a while. This is also because wearing a hat on top of a big afro is not always fun!

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Back to my curls. Two weeks later

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