Get the Look: Afro Lushness

July 29, 2010

By Katrice 
My friend Toni (also natural) and I (I'm wearing is a dry twist out)

Almost everyday, people stop me to ask what I'm doing to or using in my hair. I love it because some days I'm a little nervous that it is looking dry or has shrunken back down an inch and a half -- even three days after a twist out. But, if you've been acquainted with me for long, you've experience one of my research or DIY frenzies. And as much as it is inspired by something I'm attempting to do myself, I'm all about sharing my findings. So, I'm dedicating this post (and another batch of simple pics) to the products and tips that are on my radar.

I've tried just a few shampoos since going natural and in my last posting about the products I love, I mentioned being wedded to a non-sulfate shampoo to keep my hair from being so dry. But, since that time I've discovered that I can actually use a sudsing shampoo in conjunction with a good conditioner and moisturizer, and achieve a similar if not better outcome.

What I'm Using:
Qhemet Cocoa Tree Detangling Ghee (a luscious leave-in conditioner that I talked about in an earlier post. I've recently become a huge fan of this product.) *Don't get hung up on leaving non-leave-in conditioner in your hair as a styling product; it can cause excessive dryness. If you like the curling look that it gives, take time to find the products out there that are designed to accentuate your natural curl pattern. 

For the first year and half of me being natural, I struggled with dry and brittle hair. I was convinced that I must have the worst grade of hair ever grown, and then I opened a sample packet of Organic Root Stimulator Carrot Oil that I'd received months earlier at the Bronner Brothers summer hair show. Thank goodness for that carrot oil. It completely changed the tide of my natural hair experience. 

What I'm Using:
Organic Root Stimulator Carrot Oil (It's simply the best moisturizer I've experienced thus far, and is perfect for dry twist out of any style.)
QP Elasta Mango Butter Moisturizer (I reviewed this product in an earlier post as well, and I used it for what I intended to be a very structured twist out. I would not recommend it for that, but it is good for a voluminous twist out or textured afro. It's a fantastic moisturizer.)
*For shine, try Jamaican Mango and Lime Shina-A-Loc or ORS (anti-frizz) Olive Oil Glossing Polisher. A little of either of these products goes a long way. 

I have gotten into the swing of really trying different styles now, so I've discovered a variety of essentials for varied looks. Following product directions has taken me a long way in seven months. It really does make a difference in your outcome. 

What I'm Using:
ORS Lock and Twist Gel (It's wonderful for a defined twist out of two stand twist set. You just need a dab on each piece of hair.)
Miss Jessie's Curly Buttercreme (As you can see below in this photo from April, it produces a mix of afro and twist out for me.)
Miss Jessie's Stretch Silkening Creme This is one product that I will try my best to never be without. My hair can shrink two inches at any given time, and before I got this creme, it would take me at least a week and nightly twisting to stretch it back out and not worry about re-shrinkage. It's worth every penny. 

I have found that one of the most important things about achieving the look I want is the way I care for my hair. Many people who talk to me about my hair believe that natural hair is easier and cheaper to maintain. This is not necessarily the truth. True, I am not spending money going the salon for relaxers; but, I am spending even more time and money on my hair than I did when it was straight and I have no regrets about that. I love the way my hair looks and feels, and I work at having hair that I love. 

What I'm Doing:
Steam, steam, steam ... I am working on purchasing a Huetiful hair steamer. Thanks to a heads up about it from my friend Myleik, my hair can luxuriate in all the steam I desire, without running up my water bill. 
I'm also careful to always cover my hair with a satin bonnet at night, whether it's twisted, in an afro or braided. Both my ends and edges thank me by staying well-tamed. And as you can see all throughout this post, I twist my hair often. I have noticed that my hair is a lot softer since I started maintaining it with twists at night a couple times a week. 

Hope these tips help! xo

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  1. Great post and, as always, thanks for the tips. Taking micros out tonight and headed to Curltopia tomorrow for a straw set. Wish me luck :-).

  2. What must I say?! U r simply fabulous for sharing your tips. How did you know that I would need this post so soon after deciding that my BC date is August 13th!!! I am picking all of this up soon before the big day. :)

  3. Thanks Sabrina and S. Nicole. I can't wait to see both your new styles.

  4. Loving the hair and the research. You inspire us that are still slaves to chemicals.

  5. Thank you Jai, but your hair is ALWAYS so beautiful that you clearly have that angle covered.

  6. Valuable info. Lucky me I found your site by accident, I bookmarked it.

  7. Looking good Lady! Some of us wish we could!!!

  8. My partner and I really enjoyed reading this blog post, I was just itching to know do you trade featured posts? I am always trying to find someone to make trades with and merely thought I would ask.


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