Saturday, September 17, 2011

All about CurlyDivaCandy...

Who IS CurlyDivaCandy?!
I am a 29 year old science educator who loves teaching and I hope to one day become an educational consultant and no longer teach in the classroom. I am a TRUE product junkie (pj)!!!! I like to scrapbook, sew and do craft projects.  I am a very social person and an avid Tweeter!!!

My Natural Journey
**How long I've been natural and why...
I have been natural since April 2009.  (This is my second time going natural.  The first time I did the BC (big chop) and wore my hair in a curly afro for about a year (2006-2007), I did not like the way my hair looked in a short afro and I relaxed my hair and grew it back out.) The first time I went natural I decided to do the BC because I had worn a relaxer since I was five.  I did my first BC at 24 because I did not know the true texture of my natural hair.  I would wear my hair wet with a relaxer and my hair would have a really nice curl pattern to it. So I decided to see what it would do without a relaxer completely.  The second time I was diagnosed with diabetes and the medicine I was taking was making my hair thinner.  I grew my hair out and had my ends trimmed every six weeks until all of the relaxer was gone. 
I usually wear my hair in a curly afro or pulled back in a high curly puff.  I've never pressed my hair but since April 2009 I have flat-ironed my hair twice (October 2010, September 2011).  Because I sweat in my head I don't like to straighten my hair out.  The styles do not last longer than a day and it causes me to have to use too much heat on a daily basis.  Th e only time I apply heat to my hair is when I blow it out to trim my ends every two months.
Every three months I get my hair flat twisted or done in some protective style.
**What I'm learning...
 My hair is very unique.  Since I went natural, my sister has also.  Our textures/color is totally different! My hair is very soft and fine and does not respond if it is not oiled!  My hair DRINKS oil! My hair tangles very easy and can only be combed while wet!
**Suggestions for those thinking of going natural...
I don't think that it is the only way, but it is the only way for me.  Each person/head of hair is different!  You have to do what is best for you!  Products that work for me may not work for someone else with the same type of hair (4a).  SULFATE-FREE SHAMPOO!!! Shampoos cause my hair to tangle to the point where I can not comb it!  I co-wash every week and wash every month with a sulfate-free shampoo (I love Mizani's Natural Textures shampoo and cream cleanser!)
**For those who have chosen the natural path...
Patience is the key!!! Every product will not work for you!  Keep you hair oiled with natural oils (I make my own combo with Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Coconut Oil, Vitamin E Oil, and Castor Oil) and stay away from shampooing as much as possible.  While transitioning I did not do a BC the second time.  I wore twist outs that I did weekly and rolled using sponge rollers or rods.  DEEP CONDITIONING is the key to manageable natural/transitioning hair!!!! (That means putting the conditioner, preferably one that says leave on your hair longer than five minutes and is heavy in texture, on and leaving on 45 minutes to an hour or 10 with a plastic cap and sit under a hooded dryer.)

**Products I am using and Swear by...
My staple products are my homemade oil (recipe above), Knot Today by Kinky Curly, Eco Style Olive Oil Gel, Moisture Stretch by Mizani, and Supreme Oil by Mizani. 
Because I am a pj (product junkie) I try other products in conjunction with these staples.  At the moment I am using Mizani's sulfate-free shampoo Curl Balance (once a month, so a bottle of shampoo literally lasts me over a year), I co-wash with Suave's Almond and Shea Butter Conditioner, Deep condition (everytime you shampoo or co-wash) with Mizani's Curl Replenish or Jane Carter's Nutrient Replenishing Conditioner, KCKT as a leave in conditioner, 100% Aloe Vera Gell (for moisture), Homemade Oil (to seal in moisture), Mizani Moisture Stretch and when my hair dries I add Mizani's Supreme Oil for a little shine and IT SMELLS AWESOME!!!
Most days I wear a strech band (without the metal) to keep my hair out of my face. On days that I style my hair I put Eco Style Olive Oil Gel on my edges to keep my hair in place without it becoming flaky or sticky
Freshly washed and DC hair 
**My trials and tribulations...
As you can see from the picture my biggest issue right now is shrinkage.  I have been doing research to find ways to stretch my hair. 
I first started by using the Moisture Stretch by Mizani and it actually stretches my hair!  I still want more length to my coils so I have been using lactic acid (milk, yogurt, & sour cream) to try and stretch it even more.  I've already tried sour cream and didn't get much of a result. (The MS does a better job alone.) Next, I'm going to try milk. 
My blowout look
 Flat/double strand protective twist
Daily Look 1-
Daily Look 2-
 Blowout and rolled on sponge rollers-
Using a banana clip-
 "Going Out Look" faux hawk-