Straightening the Hair without Chemical Processing

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TextureNourishing is a process by which the hair’s cuticle is sealed by way of a strategic technique similar to flat ironing the hair using HerbalNature styling pomade.  It is EXCELLENT for anyone desiring style and versatility with natural hair or hair that is in transition from chemicals. This process may also be used on chemically treated hair.

TextureNourishing is a heat technique (press and pull) over the application of HerbalNature styling pomade or hair oil (www.theherbalnatureway.com).  This process produces a dramatic change in the texture and health of the hair.  The hair has a smoother, more tamed texture and the benefit is a healthy and nourished head of hair. 

Understanding your hair’s texture and needs is important.  This process on some textures will require a more firm application and more heat than on others.  It is important to note that if you are transitioning, your new growth is stronger and more resilient than the chemically processed hair and will require more heat and a firmer application of the process; the new growth is the superior hair.  The chemically processed hair is more fragile and only requires a modest application in order to protect it in its delicate state; the chemically processed hair is the inferior hair.   This process is an excellent way to blend the two hair textures if you are transitioning from chemicals without doing the “big chop”. 

 The process can be done as follows:

  1.  After cleansing the hair with either sulfate-free shampoo or by way of co-washing you can choose to air dry your hair in a few plaits or do a blow out process using a handheld blow dryer.
  2. After your hair is dry, section your hair into small pieces and apply the HerbalNature styling pomade or hair oil from ends to root to each section being sure to apply it evenly.
  3. Using your flat iron go down the entire length of the hair shaft being sure to apply more pressure to the new growth than to the processed hair (you may need to go over the new growth 3 -4 times)  During the pressing process you are infusing the oils into the hair with the heat.   

Proper application will seal the hair’s outer cuticle and lock the bonds straight creating a barrier to moisture which prevents it from reverting to its virgin appearance until hair becomes wet.  The natural oils and waxes in the HerbalNature products safely styles the hair straight without compromising the integrity of virgin hair. 

This is an excellent alternative for chemical-sensitive individuals or anyone desiring to eliminate the use of chemical processing on their hair.  With proper technique and care TextureNourishing can:

  1.  Tame open cuticles that cause frizzy, dry-looking hair
  2. Allow straight hair styles to last with out reverting
  3. Elongate tight curl patterns with natural styles
  4. Blend textures of hair in transition – new growth and relaxed hair
  5. Add style versatility to natural hair without damaging its integrity
  6. Create polished, sleek, shiny hair with body and movement
  7. Transition to natural hair without having to do the “big chop”
  8. Make hair resistant to moisture, wind and static

Regular application of this process may result in the elongation of the hair shaft and the natural wave pattern in the hair may appear longer.  This occurs as a result of the heat process and the nourishing effect of the products penetrating the hair shaft and retraining the bonds to appear smoother.  The hair becomes tamed and uniformed in texture and appearance, while closing the cuticle to encourage shiny, strong and healthy hair. 

http://www.gethealthyhairnow.com

What to do AFTER the Big Chop?

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When you decide to transition from chemically processed hair to your natural hair it is important to understand that the initial hair you have is NOT your natural hair’s true texture.  The integrity and texture of hair that has been chemically processed over a long period of time has been compromised for years.  Internet research suggests that a study was done about 10 years ago on black women who chemically relaxed their hair.  The study found on women who had extensively relaxed their hair over a long period of time, a thin residue between the scalp and the skull from what they believe to have been as a result of the chemicals penetrating the scalp skin. 

In my opinion this is not hard to believe because the pores of our skin can be a point of entry as well as an exit point on the body.  If this was not possible then neither would the chemicals and ingredients of the nicotine patch, weight loss patch or other transdermal patches be able to get into the body’s blood stream via the pores.  We use products such as Vick’s vapor rub, Icy Hot and other sports crème’s  to penetrate the body to aid in healing. 

If this is indeed the result of chemical processing after years of relaxing the hair, this will not just dissipate over a few months time.  My understanding is that it actually takes anywhere from seven months to a year for this to disappear after ceasing the chemical process.  This would mean that you will not be able to achieve your hair’s true natural texture until all chemical residue has had the chance to vacate the body.  This is just my own personal theory, but I would think that as long as that chemical residue is there, the new growth passing through that film before surfacing the scalp would still be affected by chemicals.

For this reason I encourage my clients to be patient with the process of defining their curls and encouraging their true texture to come forth before becoming discouraged with the process.  We have trained our hair to be straight, now we have to train it to be curly. If you give your hair the care and attention it needs, I assure you that it will deliver back to you what you want in the way of appearance.  I have clients who started out with one texture and could not believe what they ended up with.  I too had this experience.  My curl pattern is FAR different from that which I started out with! Was not sure I could do it at first, but am so grateful that I stuck with the process because I LOVE the end result and you will too if you stick with and embrace the journey.

I must stress here that our hair was created to naturally do something.  My hair may not be able to do what your hair can and vice versa.  Taking the time to “learn” your hair will help you to appreciate what your hair naturally wants to do.  For example I have never met anyone who had natural black hair that had only ONE hair texture.  Personally I have four different textures and discovering this came through making a decision to learn my hair; what it is, what it needs and what it naturally wants to do.  The following is knowledge will tremendously help you on your journey:

  1. Most important when transitioning to natural hair is to keep the hair MOISTURIZED.  Natural hair loves moisture.  Do not over wash your hair, doing so can cause it to be very dry which is a real problem.  You need not shampoo your hair more than once a month, however at least once per week I recommend cleansing by way of the co-wash method (washing the hair with conditioner).  If you are going to cleanse with shampoo, it is better to use sulfate-free products.  If your hair has a tendency to be more on the dry side, you may find it necessary to refresh and remoisturize 1 – 2 times per week.
  2. Natural hair thrives better when less is done to it.  Your natural hair should not be combed or brushed in its dry state.  Doing so can cause dryness, breakage, shedding and frizz.  Your fingers are your best friends for styling.
  3. Understand that finding the right products for your particular hair type and texture will come mostly through trial and error.  What may work for your friend might not necessarily work for you.  Purchasing products in sample sizes is the best way to go if that is an option in the beginning of your natural journey.  Be patient with this process because finding the right products is essential to achieve the look you desire for your hair.  Use a good food-based oil such as extra virgin coconut oil, jojoba oil, sweet almond oil or grapeseed oil to seal in moisture.  (In a few cases I have found clients whose hair does not like oil, but more often than not oil has a great moisturizing benefit to the hair.)  Incorporate a conditioner that you leave in (regular conditioner can be used as a leave-in) and a styling product to define your curls.
  4. Stay away from products that contain petroleum by products or mineral oil.  These ingredients do NOT aid in moisture, they rather act as a barrier to moisture and can cause clogging of the pores.

I have authored a book entitled Natural Hair and Hair Products especially for women who desire to embrace and own their natural tresses and need to understand how they can best care for them.  You can purchase this in hard copy at https://www.createspace.com/4049791 or in e-book format by going to www.gethealthyhairnow.com.

Remember…..embrace and ENJOY the process for it truly is a beautiful journey.  Here’s to your natural beautiful journey!

What is MSM?

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MSM stands for methylsulfonylmethane.  It is a sulfur-based compound and is naturally found in foods such as milk, onions, garlic and green vegetables.  MSM is the 3rd largest compound found in the human body with water and salt being numbers 1 and 2.

In the medical community, MSM has been traditionally used to treat pain, bone and joint diseases such as osteoarthritis and tendonitis.  The side effect is………….HAIR GROWTH!  The main ingredient in MSM is sulfur which is one of the principle building blocks of hair and nails.  It is theorized that MSM increases hair growth potential by lengthening the growth phase (anagen phase) of the hair cycle.

MSM strengthens hair and nails.  Collagen and keratin are both critical for the production of healthy hair and nails.  MSM is a bona fide “beauty mineral” that provides the sulfur needed to produce collagen and keratin.  It is highly noted to contribute to exceptional strength and thickness of the hair and nails, which can be noticed in just a couple weeks of consistent use.

MSM is also regarded for the following:

  • Improving the health and complexion of the skin.
  • Detoxifying the body by making the cells more permeable, thereby allowing nutrients and water to flow freely into the cells.
  • Improving flexibility.
  • Accelerating healing by increasing the body’s ability to eliminate waste products at the cellular level.
  • Naturally increases energy.
  • Acting as a powerful anti-inflammatory.
  • Helps to maintain a proper PH balance.
  • Increases oxygen availability.
  • Helps to reduce inflammation and swelling.

You can find MSM supplements at any local health food store or pharmacy.  I personally order mine at www.iherb.com (enter code KEM017 to get a discount).  However getting MSM in its most natural form from your food is always the better choice this however is sometimes not as easy to do.  I add MSM to my conditioning, rewetting spray and also drink it in orange juice as a supplement.  Even though MSM can be naturally obtained through a healthy diet, the MSM content in food can be diminished through the cooking process and other factors.

MSM is also used to treat a variety of conditions including.

  • Muscle and bone problems
  • Chronic pain
  • Hay fever
  • Allergies
  • Asthma
  • Snoring
  • Stretch marks
  • Wrinkles
  • Dental disease
  • Upset stomach
  • Constipation
  • PMS
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Type 2 diabetes

Although there is no recommended daily allowance for MSM, high doses may cause nausea, diarrhea, bloating, fatigue, headaches, insomnia, itching or worsening of allergy symptoms in some individuals.  MSM is considered safe for most people however not much in the medical literature is known about its safety during pregnancy and breast-feeding.  If you are pregnant or breast-feeding, it would be wise to consult your physician before taking this or any other supplement.

How Are You Masking The Natural You?

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The bible tells us that if a woman has long hair, it is a glory to her; for her hair is given to her for a covering 1 Cor 11:15.

Cultural history

Hair is one of the most important ways humans have of both presenting themselves and judging one another socially, being one of the parts of their body which is easiest to manipulate. Throughout many cultures or viewpoints, but not in all, hair is seen as representing control over oneself,sexually, morally, or otherwise: those having long hair having less control than those having shorter or no hair. Also, having short, cut hair (or a shaven head) is often viewed as being under society’s control, such as while in prison or as punishment for a crime, while having long hair signifies being outside of the systems of society.[

Before World War I men generally had longer hair and beards. However, short hair on men has often been enforced as a means of control, in police, military and other forces that require obedience and discipline. Slaves and defeated armies were often required to shave their heads. The trench warfare of 1914 to 1918 exposed men to flee and lice infestations, which prompted the order to cut hair short, establishing a norm that has persisted.

Beat poets during the 1950s wore longer hairstyles, as did many of the urban gay culture, although long hair was far from popular. However, the 1960s introduced The Beatles, who started a widespread longer hair fad. The social revolution of the 1960s led to a renaissance of unchecked hair growth and long hair, especially on men, worn as a political or countercultural symbol or protest. This cultural symbol extended to several Western countries in the Americas, Western Europe, South Africa, and Australia. Specific long hairstyles such as dreadlocks have been part of counterculture movements seeking to define other alternative cultures and lifestyles since this time. Longer hair in general remained popular among the youth rebellion throughout the liberal decade of the 1960s.  Clergymen and conservative parents saw the long hair fad as a threat to gender identity, cultural, and religious norms as it grew with the spread of the hippie movement in the 1960s.

In the 1970s, the popularity of Jamaica‘s reggae music and musician Bob Marley prompted interest in dreadlocks internationally. The anti-establishment philosophy of Rastafari, echoed in much of the reggae of the time, resonated with left-leaning youth of all ethnicities — especially and primarily among African Americans and other Blacks, but among counter-culture whites as well. 

In the 1980s the view of long hair as a solitary signifier of political or counter-cultural identity was countered and parodied in films such as Rambo and many other militaristic heroes of media which challenged then-contemporary views of what was masculine. Today, longer hairstyles remain popular among heavy metal enthusiasts. Long hair may be grown for the purpose of being donated to an organization, such as Locks of Love, for hairpieces to help those who could not have hair otherwise, such as those who are diagnosed with alopecia areata.

Women

Women often have a stronger inclination towards long hair than men do. Younger women tend to have longer hair than older women. Hair length and quality can act as a cue to a woman’s youth and health and, as such, signify reproductive potential. Growing and wearing long hair was almost universal among women in the western world until World War I.  Some feminists have declared long hair as “irrefutably feminine,” while others argue for shorter hair. Some religious scholars even believe that without hair or long hair, a woman is not complete. In some cultures, long, well-kept hair symbolizes wealth and luxury, as such hair is difficult to maintain in poverty.

Sikhs

Historically, East Asian cultures viewed long hair as a sign of youth and aesthetic beauty. Long hair is associated with private life and sexuality. East Asian cultures see long, unkept hair in a woman as a sign of sexual intent or a recent sexual encounter, as usually their hair is tied up. Lay Buddhists have long hair, while Buddhist monks have shaved heads. For Sikhs, Kesh is the practice of allowing one’s hair to grow naturally as a symbol of devotion to God and lack of worldliness. In Jewish and other cultures, shortening hair signifies mourning and sadness.

Native Americans

Many American Indian men wore long hair before the arrival of western influences on their culture. (In Cherokee legends, for example, males said to be handsome were often described as having “long hair almost to the ground” or similar formulas). Both men and women of these cultures have frequently struggled to maintain their tradition, but have faced heavy opposition. Many consider it a sign of giving in to western influences to have their hair cut.

Sub-Saharan Africans

In West African cultures, women with long hair were highly valued. Long, thick hair was seen as a sign of health, strength, and capability to bear many children. In keeping with this general theme, women who were too young for marriage would shave a portion of their heads to signal so. This tradition, however, did not extend to every African tribe, as several valued shorter hair.

African Americans

When black slaves were freed in the Americas, they struggled to reach the social status of whites. Many former slaves tried to conform their hairstyles as part of this struggle. African-American women felt pressured to make their hair straight like white women, rather than keeping the shorter, curlier style they had known.  However, during the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 60s, African-Americans such as Malcolm X advocated hairstyles such as afros and dreadlocks. Social pressures at the time were heavily influencing African-American females to have long, straight hair, like many Caucasians did.  Recently, scholars have observed continued pressure on blacks to have long, straight hair.

Amelian Jones believes that dolls marketed towards children add to this pressure, citing as an example a new black Barbie with long hair. Jones believes that African-American females should maintain their “African” cultural norms without feeling pressured to “tame” their hair.

This brief history is an effort for you to see how hair is viewed in different cultures and also the pressures within different cultures regarding how one should or should not wear/style their hair.  We all know and appreciate that history helps to define our thoughts, our opinions and the way we may or may not view something.

Throughout many generations and cultures people have masked their natural self to conform to the beliefs, opinions or expectations of others.   Many have been challenged and found it difficult to accept and display who they naturally are especially in regards to their hair.  Your natural self is and should be determined by you.

Someone tells you that you should be a size 6 but as far back as you can remember you have never been less than a size 12.  And furthermore you have always been comfortable with your size and who you are.   So who should determine your body size?  You, who knows your body type and your mindset towards your body type, or someone with an opinion of what size you should be.  Someone tells you that you have “bad hair” and should do something about it, but you know that your hair does not shed, does not break, has a wonderful shine and is strong and looks healthy.  So who should determine what your hair should look like?  And what is “bad hair”?  And furthermore what is “good hair”?

Good hair to me is hair that is healthy, strong, does not break or shed, or pop; hair that shines and is bouncy.  If I know that this is the type of hair that I have, why am I going to let someone else’s opinion dictate what my hair should look like.  Why am I going to mask the “natural” me to appease someone else?  In what other areas of our lives do we appease others and deep down inside our spirits we know that we are compromising who we are to be “accepted” by someone else?

The bible admonishes us to be transformed by the renewing of our minds. One of the definitions that I found for transformation is “a change in disposition, heart, character, or the like; conversion”. The word renew means reestablish on a new, usually improved, basis or make new or like new.  What the above scripture says to me is that in order to be changed from a state that does not serve us from a higher perspective and value, we must first consciously acknowledge that our mindset and the way we think about things needs to improve.

I ask you all to consider and ponder this question today……..what is your mindset, your thought process regarding God’s creation in the person of you?  In reflecting on this question it is important that you intentionally journey on an honest path with yourself.  Are the thoughts that you are carrying about yourself today serving you at the highest place of truth and divinity.  What was God’s purpose for creating you and are you endeavoring to fulfill that purpose or are you just rolling with the punches and accepting whatever may come your way?  Or worse, allowing other people’s opinions to shape you into someone you were not created to be?

The Power of the Mind, The Power of Thoughts

Mind power is the second strongest power next to the spirit. The thoughts that pass through our minds are responsible for everything that happens in our lives. Our predominant thoughts influence our behavior and attitude and control our actions and reactions. As your thoughts are, so is your life.

This is why it is very important to be careful what you think of yourself, others, your children.  How many times have to seen or heard of a parent thinking about their child and then in turn saying to their child “you will never be anything”.  They play this thought over and over again in their minds and what usually ends up happening is what they have thought, the child manifests into something that may be undesirable to the parent.  In actuality what was experienced was what was expected. Thoughts are like a video cassette that is played in the VCR of the mind. What you play is what you see and experience. What you think is what you live. To make changes in your life it is necessary to eject the old video cassette, and insert a new one that you like; it is necessary to change your thoughts.

Few people think what they think they think. Do you know what you think about? The answer is revealed by the life you lead. If you are happy and successful, you are thinking thoughts of happiness and success. If you are wading through an endless stream of problems and finding life painful to bear, it is caused by thoughts of doubt, failure, anger, helplessness, incompetence, and pain. In other words, whether you think life is miserable or great, you’re correct, for life is whatever you think it is.

If you give seeds water and fertilizers they grow into healthy and strong plants. Thoughts are like seeds.  They have a natural tendency to grow and manifest on the material level if they are fed with attention and interest.

Now, let’s look at what some of the brightest minds had to say about the power of thought:

“What we are today comes from our thoughts of yesterday, and our present thoughts build our life of tomorrow: Our life is the creation of our mind. Your worst enemy cannot harm you as much as your own unguarded thoughts. But once mastered, no one can help you as much.” Buddha (568 ~ 488 BC)

“A man’s life is what his thoughts make of it. Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking.” Marcus Aurelius (121 ~ 180 AD)

“There is nothing good or bad, but thinking makes it so.” William Shakespeare (1564 ~ 1616)

“Our life always expresses the result of our dominant thoughts.” Soren Kierkegaard (1813 ~ 1855)

“All that you accomplish or fail to accomplish with your life is the direct result of your thoughts. You are today where your thoughts have brought you; you will be tomorrow where your thoughts take you.” James Allen (1864 ~ 1912)

“Your beliefs become your thoughts Your thoughts become your words Your words become your actions, Your actions become your destiny.” ~ Gandhi

We must pay attention to the thoughts we think. Learn to let into your mind only the thoughts that bring good, happy and positive results.  Remember as a man thinks so he is, however it is VERY possible to be transformed once we renew our minds.  What we think in our minds is manifested in our bodies, our physical existence so I want to encourage you today that the right thought does a body good!

One Year Transitioning

Well it’s been quite a while since I posted and now I am one year into my transition and I did it without cutting the length of my hair!  I am about 75% natural now and to tell you the truth I am loving my natural hair so much that I have been tempted many times to cut all of the processed hair off but if I can’t get my hair into a good sized ponytail I would not be happy so I continue to hang on to the “old” hair.  I say old because my new hair looks so shiny and healthy and feels so strong and I am just embracing and loving the natural me!

I must admit though the journey has been frustrating at times but I am so glad for HerbalNature Organic Hair Products.  I must admit that I have tried other products during this year but I always end up going right back the my HerbalNature, especially the styling pomade, because honestly I haven’ t found any other product that gives me the look, feel and texture that the HerbalNature does.  I’ve tried Mixed Chicks Shampoo, Deep Conditioner and Leave-in Conditioner.  I actually like the deep conditioner, I’m not sure if the shampoo is SLS Free however so I alternate it with my Giovanni or Now SLS Free Shampoo.  The leave-in conditioner is marketed as a styling product however it does not give me the look I want by itself and so now I use it in conjunction with my HerbalNature Styling Pomade and I like it but if I use my pomade and the HerbalNature Hair Tea together I love the look that I achieve, so  really I think it’s all about the styling pomade for me :)

I am so excited about this journey and the wonderful thing is I can wear my hair curly, I can wear it straight, I can wear it in braid-outs or twist-outs, I can wear it in a pony tail and all these styles I get using HerbalNature.  If you want more information on this product go to get healthy hair now dot com and see what else HerbalNature can do.  I will post pictures soon but you can also check me out on youtube at gethealthyhairnow.

God Bless

Transitioning from Chemicals to Natural – Get Healthy Hair Now

I wish I had known years ago that transitioning from chemically processed hair to natural hair is very easy once you have the right products and the knowledge on how to style and maintain your hair. 

Yesterday I washed my hair.  I used to wash it every day then I cut it to every 2 – 3 days now I try to stretch it to 4 days.  I used a pre-poo prior to washing my hair.  (Pre-poo is an intensive conditioner applied to the hair for at least an hour before shampooing)  I just recently learned this term pre-poo and it’s so funny when you say it to people because it sounds like you’re saying pre-poop! LOL  I left it on for 1-1/2 hours and then washed.  I haven’t made the transition to SLS free shampoos yet because I have so many different shampoos I have decided not to waste any more money and use those up before I totally switch to SLS free.  Instead of washing my normal 2 – 3 times I only did one application of shampoo.  I used quite a bit of it and worked it through my hair for about 5 minutes.  After thoroughly rinsing it out I did an ACV rinse and applied a good amount of regular conditioner.  I was surprised that even with just one application of shampoo my hair felt squeaky clean.  I combed my hair through from ends to root to detangle and rinsed the conditioner out thoroughly.  I then applied my HerbalNature Hair Tea ( I just love that stuff) by pouring it over my hair, catching the excess in a bowl.  I then saturated the ends of my hair in the bowl of tea and let it drip while I took my shower.

When I was done I gently squeezed the excess tea from my hair with a towel.  I then sectioned my hair in four and proceeded to do a twist set.  To every section I applied my HerbalNature Pomade with a little bit of shea butter and then let it air dry.  My hair usually takes an entire day to dry (including overnight) but to my surprise before I went to bed I was able to loosen the twist set and I absolutely LOVE the way my hair looks and feels.  The great thing about this hair style is you cannot tell the difference between the new growth and the chemically processed hair.  The clincher was when my husband came home and told me that my hair was pretty.  It was easy, I was able to do my hair myself, it’s cute and my hair feels so soft and silky.

I love HerbalNature!

http://www.gethealthyhairnow.com