Myths and Legends Afro Hair - Part 4

Myth: If you have good hair, ie curly/ fine hair  you can grow your hair longer than someone with bad hair.

First off, there is no such thing as good hair/bad hair! Learning to manage your hair type gives you healthy hair, it can only be called bad if you don't treat it with care and that is not genetic, that is just you giving your hair the care it deserves. All hair is good hair! 

Using the right products is only the start, our diets all dictate how healthy our hair is. Other things like stress can also affect the health of our hair. I had severe hair loss after a particularly gruelling project at work! So eating correctly and reducing stress can also be important for the helth of your hair.

If you have thick curly hair, wavy thick hair or curly thin hair, you still have to know how to maintain it, in order for it to grow.

For thicker hair, I recommend lots of moisture for a start, both inside and outside the body, this will help combat any coarse effects. So drink lots of water and use moisture based products to combat coarseness. Once the hair feels softer the world is your oyster. I would love to have thicker hair. Getting thicker hair under control is most of the battle.

For thin hair, my hair secret has got to be anything with castor oil, coconut oil or ylang ylang oil. Great for thickening up hair - Jamaican Black Castor Oil every time. Stick to a good regime with these products and you are already half way there.

Love your hair, thick, thin, curly, straight and work with what you've got.

Embrace Your Inner AfroDeity

My Hair Story - Diana

Today we are starting our new section called my hair story. It is where we invite all AfroDeities to tell us there story so far. No matter if you have started your regime or not or if you think your hair is currently perfect or leaves a lot to be desired.
Send your hair stories to me Leilu at or
Our first story is from Diana:

When I first started reading your blog, I was thinking about what your regiment is and thinking it is very restrictive.  And when I was at my hairdressers this week, I had an ah-ha moment (as Oprah would say).

I first permed my hair at 13 for elementary school graduation.  I loved it except neither me nor my mom knew how to care it, so in less than a year, I transitioned back to natural hair, which I kept through highschool until I went away to University. In university, I was left with the prospect of combing my own hair (which was a daunting task at the time as my mom had done my hair my whole life).  So, the week of my 19th birthday, I permed my hair and have been doing it ever since (I am now 32).  When I first did it at 13, I was told to go 2 weeks and then wash the first time. Come back to the salon for a wash and then wash it every week on my own until my next perm.  So, that would be 4 washes in between perms, 3 of which were done by me.  And so when I started perming again, I kept this regiment (sometimes all 4 washes on my own).  This has always worked very well for me and have always had pretty good hair (but I was really bad at wrapping my hair at night and very bad at drying my hair properly, often just air drying and leaving it in a ponytail for a week).  My pregnancy and breastfeeding hair was the best ever, and seeing as I was breastfeeding and/or pregnant for 5 years straight, it seemed to work for me - and I could also serious abuse my hair with very little repercussions.

Then came the weaning of my 3rd and final child.  At which time my hair started falling out (which is normal and most of my friends experienced it sometime after childbirth, though I had never. Maybe because my pregnancy and breastfeeding piggybacked each other the whole time).  I had significant hair loss that happened over 3 months.  It was from the root and not really any actual breakage.  Since going back to my hair routine after, I noticed my hair was not responding the same way it used to.  I noticed the last few months that my hair doesn't seem to make it to 2 weeks of hair washing after that inital perm (serious breakage).  IN fact, this week since my perm, I realized it doesn't even last a full week.  So, today (which would be 5 days after my perm), I did my first midweek wash (the pre-poo, if you will).  I plan to wash on Friday (which is my wash day).  I am going to try to embrace 2 hairwashes a week and see if that helps my hair any.  One of them being just conditioner.

If you have any other tips, let me know.  I am not ready to embrace the full treatment you do...the biweekly trim and everything else seems overwhelming.  I think this is a lifechange I have to lean into.  I have been very faithful using the caster oil, though.

When I was complaining to my hairdresser on Thursday last week about my hairwashing routine not working anymore, she looked at me and said, "as you get older, your hair changes.  You can't expect your hair to be the exact same as it was when you were a teenager".

Thanks again Diana for sending in your hair story, especially the bit about your pregnancy hair, I am sure a lot of us can relate to that.
Hopefully Diana's story is similar to others of you out there and helps you in some way!

Embrace Your Inner AfroDeity

K2H Products: First Month Review

I have spoken briefly about the K2H 365 leave in conditioner which is a brilliant spray for quickly getting moisture into the hair. I tend to moisturise and seal at night and then use this product in the morning as a quick spritz. I love love love this product and use it daily. It comes in around £5.99 from the stores listed below.
K2H 365 Leave In Conditioner  - provides the most convienient INSTANT TONIC for every day use,maintaining the correct pH balance and moisture content. Contains a special blend of proteins and vitamins which penetrate and strengthen the inner hair structure.

I have recently tried more of the products from this range and they are all great.

I hadn't washed my hair as often as usual and found that one particular week my scalp was a bit itchy so I decided to try the K2H Shampoo and Conditioner for Itchy Scalp, although my scalp felt brilliant afterward, this product did make my hair feel a little dry on the ends. My scalp isn't particularly itchy so maybe this product just isn't for me. The Shampoo was an unusual brown colour and was lovely and tingly on the scalp.
K2H Shampoo and Conditioner for Itchy Scalp - Cooling Therapy - With tea tree and other essential oils.To soothe and comfort irritable scalp. £6.99 each

The K2H Shampoo and Conditioner for Dry Hair product was also beautiful to use and made my hair feels really moisturised. However I had to wash my hair a few more times a week as the ends did feel dry after a few days.
K2H Shampoo and Conditioner for Dry Hair - This special cleanser,gently cleanses and nourishes hair and corrects any imbalance of pH. The blended Kukui nut Oil and Panthenol pro vitamin B5,quickly penetrate the structure of hair to provide increased volume strength and shine. £6.99 each

My absolute favourite from this range was the K2H Shampoo and Conditioner for Damaged Hair. My hair felt silky for days and was complemented brilliantly by the K2H 365 Leave In Conditioner.  
K2H Shampoo and Conditioner for Damaged HairWith Ylang Ylang essential oil and ginseng extracts.Helps to repair and revitalise damaged hair,giving it luster and life. £6.99 each

I think that although my trial has just started and so far has been a little hit and miss, it really is about using the right product for your hair, I would think the Dry Hair and Damaged Hair would be best for my hair, but I loved how the Damaged Hair Shampoo and Conditioner made my hair feel and this worked for me. I will be continuing my trial of these products for  another couple of months to give them a good trial. I have yet to try the Deep Penetrating Conditioner from this range, but think it is definitely worth it. I definitely recommend this range 

Where to buy K2h products:

Roots and Sculpture
Hair and Beauty

Embrace Your Inner AfroDeity

Winter Hair Care

Even though the rest of the country is knee deep in snow, out here in the sticks we have yet to see any. However with temperatures at -10C at the moment, my hair needs extra special care.

So here are some tips for getting through the cold winter weather and tackling the drying effects of the 

Prevention better than cure
Do a bit of dusting or trim your hair early on in the winter season to get rid of slightly split ends before cold winter days cause breakage where those split ends were. Also try to do any chemical treatments early on. There is nothing I hate more than relaxing my hair and then having to go out Christmas shopping etc. Not only is it incredibly cold but the weather will contribute to that drying effect that chemicals have.

Eradicate Buildup
In the winter I tend to moisturise more than usual. All that extra moisturising and product can cause serious product buildup, especially if you're only washing your hair every few days. At least once a week, try using a natural cleansing shampoo that's free of sodium lauryl sulfate, and once a month try clarifying shampoo to remove all that excess product from the hair. Don't forget to condition after every shampoo! I use Curls Clarifying Shampoo and that works for me.

Moisturise and Seal
A light styling cream or leave in conditioner keeps ends from drying and frizzing and helps keep hair neat. It is also a good idea to seal in that moisture. Oil Mixtures like KeraCare Essential Oil, or Mizani Supreme Oil are quite good.

Up Do's and Protective Styles
In order to protect your hair from the elements an up do or other protective style is just the ticket and keeps your hair off your collar and away from woollen scarfs that can cause breakage.

Silk Lining in your Hats
As mentioned, wool and cotton can cause breakage particularly on the neck line where hair meets collars and scarf. But dont forget that hats can also contribute to this so try and wear ones lined with silk or satin. You ca also do this yourself to existing hats.

Embrace Your /inner AfroDeity

Don't Touch a Black Womans Hair Syndrome

You know you do it too, Have you actually ever let anyone apart from your stylist touch your hair?
Yesterday evening after 10 years of knowing my husband, for some bizarre unexpected reason he decided to touch my hair!! A first I wasn't really sure what to say then I calmed down a but. Usually I hate people touching my hair, I never actually say anything when colleagues touch my hair at work, I kinda duck away looking extremely uncomfortable like they'd taken a nude photograph of me or something.

What is up with that?? Why are we so scared of people touching our hair, You would have thought my husband had Nair hair remover on his hands. I know some people talk about hair envy, some myth about your hair falling out, if someone who is envious of your hair touches it.

When I had weaves in this type of behaviour was 10 times worse, I was so scared anyone would realise that what was on my head wasnt my real hair, if people came anywhere near to me to be able to look at my hair I would move away, I was increasingly scared of tall people (I am only 5'2) and when I started working with Marie who was 6", I would spend ages in the morning examining the top of my head to make sure there wasn't any dandruff or tracks from the weave showing. 

This is one of the main reasons I stopped wearing a weave, I missed my own curly hair. I missed being able to put my hands in my own hair and I hated the itching. Since I started wearing my own hair again and actually looking after it, I feel so much more confident and I don't hide from people anymore. When people put there hands in my hair I a still terrified they will discover my secret shame, my fake hair, but then I remember there is nothing to hide. I can imagine that this similar to the way you feel when you make the decision to go "Au Natural". 

I now have a daughter and I do plan to stop relaxing my hair and I hope that the confidence of no longer hiding your true self and not having to manipulate my hair to get to look like something it isn't will feel the same way. But I am taking it one step at a time and at the moment this me feels really confident and really REAL and really ME. Not weaving my hair anymore or wearing wigs is one of the best decisions I have ever made.


Embrace Your Inner AfroDeity

Myths and Legends Afro Hair - Part 3

MYTH: Black/Afro Hair will not grow long

Note first of all that hair grows from the roots not the ends. Where the problem really lies is at the ends where breakage can occur.
How many times have you heard black women say "My hair just doesn't grow!" or have you even said this yourself.

You can do many things to combat breakage but the one that people always commonly make the mistake of doing is not protecting their ends.
  • Hair breakage on the collar of your shirt, prevents hair growing past shoulder length.
  • Wear protective styles
  • Hair breakage on your pillow - wear a silk /satin scarf at night - cover your hair every night
  • Moisturise and Seal the ends of your hair daily with a leave in and a carrier oil
  • Deep condition your hair weekly and don't forget to use a reconstructive conditioner like Joico K-Pac Deep Penetrating Reconstructor or a hair masque like PhytoSpecific Vital Force Creme Bath at least once a month.
  • Balance betweenMoisture and Protein is Key!


Embrace Your Inner AfroDeity

Dry Brittle Hair - AfroDeity Q/A

How do you keep your hair from getting brittle if you don't use a blow dryer?  I find that I can barely comb my hair some weeks if I don't blow dry my hair when I wash it.

I guess it has to do with keeping moisture in your hair and this is acheived by washing your hair regularly and using a good leave in and sealing in that moisture with a carrier oil. Your hair shouldn't be getting brittle if you are keeping moisture in. Blow drying  (unless with an ionic blow dryer) is just taking moisture out of your hair. I also brush my hair back to keep neeat while it air drys so the strands are straight and smooth. Cover with a scarf overnight helps keep it shape. Here are some quick tips to prevent that dryness:

  • I have to note here that moisture does not mean greasy or oily. Do not use oils and pomade that make your hair feel greasy if it doesn't feel soft and easy to manage and is just weighed down by the products it is probably contributing to your dryness.
  • Put down the blow dryer and the curling tongs, excessive heat o the hair, will make it feel dry and brittle.
  • Dont forget you are what you eat ... or drink, if you are not consuming enough liquids, that can also affect your skin and hair and make you feel dry both inside and out. Try drinking 1 - 2 glasses of water first thing in the morning and see if this makes a difference tou your hair over time.
Good Leave In Conditioner
Original Mane and Tail Conditioner £6.39@ Leilu's Amazon
Mizani Moisturising Silkening Liquid Gel £16.95 @ Leilu's Amazon
Silky Locks K2H 365 leave-in conditioner", £5.99 @
Suki Skincare’s Hair Scalp Conditioning Oil @ Harvey Nichols

Good Carrier OilOlive Oil 
Palmers Olive Oil Formula Hair Scalp Conditioner Spray £4.70 @ Leilu's Amazon or the Extra Virgin Oil from your kitchen( check it contains no salt is good too

Good Moisturising Shampoo and Conditioner
Alterna Caviar Moisture Shampoo, £17.99 and Conditioner, £26.35 by Alterna at Leilu's Amazon
My personal favourite from this range is the Alterna Caviar Treatment Hair Masque £28.50

Hope this is what you meant and that my answer has been helpful
Embrace Your Inner AfroDeity

December 2010 Hair Update

February 2010 December 2010

Just thought I would upload pictures of my latest attempt at self -relaxing!
Came out really well and the Jamaican Back Castor Oil always helps protect the ends and my sensitive scalp. My hair is incredibly thick, and I have definitely been more successful achieving thickness than length.

Anyhow, stretching has really helped and I would say I am now borderline APL but have a little ways to go yet. Most of the other blogs I read show people with incredible length in a short time. My growth has been slow but maybe I am not vain enough with it. I definately dont treat my hair like fine silk, like I should. Maybe if I am a bit more careful I will acheive a bit more next year.

As I am so close to APL my new goal is to have thicker hair and reach Bra Strap Length (BSL). It may take me another year though, but stay tuned and see how I get on.

Embrace Your Inner AfroDeity

Stretching: My New Favourite Products

So I am currently 16 weeks post relaxer and planning to relax this next weekend.
I have just started my relaxer protocol as seen in my post Self Relaxing Black hair: Should You??: Tips and Regime, by Clarifying with the Curls Clarifying Shampoo, 7 days before relaxing.

I did my usual pre-poo with Sunny Isle Jamaican Black Castor Oil.
Once it had been clarified, I dried my hair with a muslin square, no rubbing, just wrapped it around my head. Once most of the moisture had gone and hair was towel dried. I applied Mane and Tail Deep Moisturising Conditioner.

Now, I have had my doubts about this product. Although it says it is for horses (boy, did my husband laugh at this), it is also made for human use. I had some left over birthday money so I purchased this from AfroDeity's Best of Amazon. Not too expensive ( £3.69 @ AfroDeity's Best of Amazon) and I have to say this conditioner has revitalised my hair. My hair had been getting a bit used to the Ojon products so it was time to rotate to something else.

A genuinely lovely conditioner and the two reviewers on Amazon agree with me giving this product 5 stars.

Now that my hair was all washed and clean and felt amazing, my new growth was so manageable after using this product, I used my Edgestick to get the edges straight and smooth and then my Tangle Teezer to comb/brush. These three things are what are helping me keep my hair neat at the mo. I usually style and wrap in a scarf for the night and it stays till the next morning. Effortless.

Hope this is helpful to anyone stretching, as these products have really helped stop my hair getting into a tangled mess.

Anyway I thought I would update you before I relaxed, so my next post will show my progress in the last few months and then back to our Myths and Legends Series.

Embrace Your Inner AfroDeity

Afro Hair in Red Magazine?

I always get excited when a main stream magazine has anything about afro hair in it because it hapens so rarely.

Red Magazine did a piece this month on products for all hair types, I usually skip these articles in  ain stream magazines, because if they do happen to mention anything remotely related to my hair it is usually curly hair and that is definitely a broad category. As I was nonchalantly skipping through this section I noticed the heading "Chemically Treated & Sensitive,  I was like " Stick a pin... Thats me!"

So I thought I would give you a brief summary of the products they mentioned in the article here:

1) Cleanse Carefully - I have already made reference to this in my recent myths and legends post

2) Amp Up Protection
John Frieda Thermal Protection serum £5.99
Ojon Restorative Leave in Treatment for all hair colours £29.50

3) Style Gently
Mason Pearson Bristle Brush
My preferred - Tangle Teezer £9.78 @ Leilu's Amazon

4) Repair with Protein 
Redken Time reset At Home Porosity Filler £35 @ Leilu's Amazon
Frederic Fekkai Protein RX PM Repair Strengthener £71.53 @ Leilu's Amazon
John Frieda Miraculous Recovery Masque £5.49 @ Leilu's Amazon

5) Go for Restoring Treatment 
Aveda Botanical Hair and scalp Therapy Salon Treatment £10.

*I love Aveda products, before I started my journey I went to Selfridges and got a free consultation, they recommended quite a few Aveda products and they were amazing for my hair. I thought I had found a miracle product. Unfortunately I wasn't using all the other things that I have now come to recognise as essential for enjoying my hair properly, but as for the products I do definitely recommend them.*

Embrace Your Inner AfroDeity

Myths and Legends Afro Hair Part 2.5

All Moisturisers are equal  - Part 2.5

Get Ingredient Savy
Make sure you get savy about the ingredients in your products

Make oils your hair’s new best friend - mango oil, grapeseed oil, olive oil, coconut oil are all really moisturising and give hair  that extra shine (Errol Douglas).
Expert Recommends
Thermo-Active Repair Ceram, £12.75 by Matrix Biolage @ Leilu's Amazom
Afro Love’s Coconut Leave-in Cream Conditioner £2.29 @  Love Afro Cosmetics
Seven Wonder Miracle Oil, £13.95 @ Victorian Health

Embrace Your Inner AfroDeity
For more like this see Elle Magazine and Afro Hair