Mrsphatandnaptural Turns 3 years old today! Whoo hoo! I may not be where some have risen to in 3 years, but I’m still here! Over these 3 short years I have found many new friends both online and in person. I’ve attended, held, and hosted many events. I’ve even traveled to 2 states that I had never been to for just to attend Plus Sized Fashion and or Natural Hair events. I’ve have also been featured on a few online sites, namely Essence.com.
Still I’d have to say the biggest “get” from the last 3 years of blogging has to be tapping into a supportive sisterhood that I didn’t even realize existed. They are an encouraging, loving, creative bastion of knowledge and experiences that I can’t seem to go a day without…( okay so I’m a social media junkie) lol. That aside I love being apart of this collective!
As I move forward with Mrsphatandnaptural some things will change. In the spirit of serving those who need what I’m cooking up, I will commit to staying honest, current, and open to God using me. I will continue to give you all the tips tricks and styles of the latest conversation. I will do the product reviews and include you into my battle with this belly! But I will also share with you my love for God and all things good for your soul!
Remember to celebrate yourself! And just know God doesn’t make any mistakes, and that includes you!
I can’t front, I’ve definitely had to put these tips into practice. This is one of those posts that was built from experience. Now this post is a direct follow-up to the 101 Natural Hair Tips: Transitioning Back To Natural. In case you missed it (click here) .
Trying to find the right product is no easy task. You get so frustrated thinking you’ve tried everything and nothing is working, when really you just need to find the right thing for you and stick to it for a while. So that was the bonus tip now let’s get into the rest.
1. Read labels: The reason I start with this is because you can all together avoid certain products. Such as if I see something with coconut oil in it, most times I avoid it. I know that coconut oil doesn’t work for my hair so I just avoid products with it in the first couple items on the ingredient label.
2. Get to know your hair: I always say listen to your hair. If you use a product and it agrees with your hair, stick to it. Read that label and use products like it.
3. Don’t believe the hype: Every few months there is a new buzz word or super ingredient. Many times this item has been on the ingredient list the whole time, but now that it’s the IN thing they put it on the label. Also I’ve learned that they nearly have to put in a few drops of the said miracle ingredient to have its claim on the label.
4. Read Reviews – Now this is different from number 3, these are actual reviews from people who have legitimately used the product. I know everything isn’t for every body, but if you see a lot of favorable reviews, you may want to give it a try. But on the other hand, if no one has good things to say, maybe you should let that one slide by you.
5. Ask questions – There are so many Curltalk, CurlfriendChats, and Twitter Chats, use them to your advantage. That’s what they are there for. Just about every brand subscription box and a lot of bloggers have some kind of Q&A session in rotation. Or if you belong to a Facebook Group for natural hair, throw your question into the forum.
6. Try to get samples: That way you can test it out and see if you like it before buying it. Now when I first found out about the natural hair community, the “natural hair meetup” was the thing to do. There you could meet local Naturalista, brand owners, and emerging socialprenures. Additionally these meetups would be sponsored by brands and they would give out swag bags full of samples and free full size bottles. The meetups aren’t as popular any more but they are still around.
7. If you have it use it: This one is a no brainer, avoid the hoard! Plain and simple, why keep piling up products when you haven’t used what you have.
8. If it doesn’t work pass it on: Again this one is a no brainer for me. I frequently pass product along to my family members that doesn’t work for me. We all have different hair textures and different products work on their hair that may not work on mine and vice versa. So I don’t hold on to the products that I know don’t work for me. Thereby making room for other things that will work.
9. Limit the available space: Unless you’ve been there you can’t imagine how quickly the hair products can and will take up every inch of space possible. I don’t know it’s almost like they reproduce while your sleeping or something **insert mischievous laugh*** . No but really, I have a three draw bin and I’ve committed to only keeping as much as can fit in those three draws.
10. Purge every 3-6 months: This keeps your product fresh, and limits the habit of holding on to that last little bit (I’m talking to myself here). As I said above this makes room for product that you want to try. Besides if the product is organic it may have an expiration date, and you don’t want to use old product or hold onto something that’s useless.
It’s almost inevitable that most naturals have a little product junkie in us. Besides the fact that it’s expensive, it could also lead to self-defeating hair journey. Not to mention as with any guilty pleasure it takes some of the joy from the experience. Don’t let the junkie monkey get you down!
Honey, Aloe Gel, Olive Oil! My Favorite Summer Hair Products For Shiny Healthy Natural Hair!
If long healthy natural hair is your goal. Summer is Gods gift to you.
Most people retain more hair in the Summer. Due to the warm weather we naturally do things like drink more water, get more activity, and wear lower manipulation styles. Just doing these 3 things will increase your hair growth potential.
Now add in 3 of natures Summer gems and your on the way to waist length. Maybe not that long but you’ll definitely see added growth.
Honey– You can use raw honey, organic honey, or I just grab the same honey I put in my tea. Honey is a humectant. This means it naturally draws moisture out of the air into your hair. So use it as a pre poo ( recipe below), add it to your shampoo, or you can even use it as a great DIY deep conditioner.
Used to: Prevent or remedy dry hair. Increase manageability, and add shine to the hair.
Tip: if you use too much your hair can get soggy. It will be so soft that it won’t hold braids or twists.
For more information and my deep conditioning recipe click here – Honey Be Natural
Olive Oil- Again I use the same olive oil that I cook with. Olive oil is high in vitamin E which strengthens the hair shaft. Also the oil is good for the scalp. Most of the time I use it to seal the moisture into my hair after I wash it. Also it can be put in a spray bottle with some water and use it to re-twist at night. Or you can heat it and apply it to your hair as a hot oil treatment.
Used to: Seal in moisture. Add shine and coat the scalp. Tip: properly moisturized hair reduces the occurrence of single strand knots, a decreases detangling time. If you have a problem with single strand knots, try oil rinsing.
Aloe Vera Gel- I use Aloe Vera gel, but you can get the juice or cut open the plant. Aloe has many benefits for hair. The biggest is its packed with amino acids which strengthens the hair shaft. It increases circulation to the scalp which stimulates hair growth. It’s also a natural humectant, so it draws in the moisture from the air. And the super benefit is, it has anti bacterial ingredients which helps to combat dandruff and other bacteria that can form on the scalp. Used to: balance ph in hair. Add moisture and shine, promote hair growth. Cleanse the scalp.
Tip: if you have an area that is slow to grow try massaging the area 2-3 times per week with some aloe Vera gel. This will stimulate circulation and increase hair growth to that area.
Here is my Summertime Fine prepoo recipe:
4-5 tbsp. aloe Vera gel
3 tbsp. of olive oil
2 tbsp. of honey.
Mix everything well and apply this on your hair from end to edge. The ends of the hair is the oldest part, and furthest away from the natural sebum the comes from your scalp. Leave on for about 20-25 minutes then shampoo and proceed with your normal routine.
This is a hydrating hair mask. If your hair is dull and dry this is just what the hair doctor ordered.
You can use this about once a month or as often as you deep condition which shouldn’t be more than 2 times per month.
now if you are not a DIY’er you can find commercial products with these ingredients in them. Or as I said earlier you can also just add them to your favorite shampoos, conditioners and or leave-in. (don’t add honey to your leave-in, it needs to be washed out).
Do you prefer to buy or are you a mixologist? Either way this is a simple and easy way to increase moisture and shine to your hair this summer! We’d love to hear some of your favorite DIY beauty recipes! Please drop us a comment.
If there was one thing you could do that would make your natural hair journey easier would you do it? It’s so simple, yet so many naturalistas miss this valued resource in the natural hair community. Better yet, even more don’t even know it exist! The one thing you can do is attend a natural hair meet up. It’s better than buying all the products in the isle, binge watching your favorite YouTube vlogger, and reading blog posts til your eyes are tired.
How many times have you watched a YouTube tutorial, followed all the steps, and didn’t get the desired result? Or read a blog post, ran out and bought the product, followed all the steps only to fail? If this has ever happened to you, you need to go right now and buy a ticket to the next meet up in your area!
Now I could go through a laundry list of reason why natural hair meet ups are a valued resource, but I’m gonna pick my top three reasons.
Face 2 Face Education
Yes that’s correct many of the local bloggers and vloggers, attend, host and guest speak at meet ups. So what’s better than a one on one conversation about your issue? Depending on the topic, and focus of the meet up there may be a panel discussion / Q&A or better yet they may just be mingling and you could ask them your questions personally. Not to mention there are usually tons of fellow Natralistas that have had the same problem you have and are more then willing to share their solutions with you. Very often natural hair meetups have:
Usually one or more full sized product will be included in the swag bags! All thought I’ve never been to one like this, but at the very least you will get samples and valuable discounts towards the purchase of products. I’ve always gotten between 1-5 full sized products as well as samples. This is a low cost way to build your product stash. The investment of the ticket purchase is usually a lot lower then the cost of product you will receive. Also, there are usually great give away sponsors, for prizes, raffles, and games.
And the very last but yet equally as important resource that natural hair meetups provide is access to the your local Curlfriends! There’s no substitute for surrounding yourself with like minded Curlies! They not only provide support and encouragement but also much needed comfort in the journey. I have meet so many wonderful young ladies that I would have never met in any other circumstance. Some are business owners, bloggers, long term naturalists, hair stylist, and so on.
There one last thing I feel is important to mention, you have to support your local natural hair community! That’s how brands decide if they are going to sponsor events, and or sell products in your area. If you don’t have a natural hair community in your area why not start one ?
Are you apart of a local natural hair community? If so give them a shout out in the comments! If not and you are looking to join one, drop a comment and we’d be more that happy to get you connected!
Please follow us on Facebook , Instagram and Twitter for more information, and inspiration!
I just have to say I am still on a high from the experience of basking in the presence of over 150 women representing NJ Curlfriends. We had a ball! I surly hope everyone got more than they expected because I sure did! It was 4 hours of entertainment, education, shopping, food, and dancing! All while celebrating our fellow sisters and a few brothers lol, in a positive encouraging space. What’s better than that?
Speaking of the space, the place was beautiful! For the third year Cabriella from International Hair Design was the ever gracious New Jersey Host for the Montclair NJ leg of this 40 city, 3 country, 3 continent affair. It was held in the Montclair State University Conference Center! Surrounded on two sides with massive window that seem to reach the sky! If you could imagine it was elegantly casual! Yeah that’s it! Although the space is obviously a beautiful state of the art space, the warm nature and inclusive vibe made it ok to let your guard down and bare and share in the wealth of love, information, and kinship.
Thirty-Five Curlfriends purchased VIP admission which gave them early entry,a VIP reception, as well as swag bags sponsored by the INHMD 2016 title sponsors with full sized products from Made Beautiful, Eden Bodyworks, and others!
What’s a movie with out a soundtrack? DJ Twin kept us rocking with his Jersey blend of Club and Soul tunes.
We started the day off with New Jersey based motivation speaker Iamlunic. She set the room a blaze with her energy! Unfortunately, I was so caught up in her speech that I didn’t think to record her!
Next up was Quality Healthcare, who spoke about the heart health. As you must have heard Heart Disease is the leading cause of death for African American Women.
There were 2 demos, first was a hair demo by Scarlet of Wondercurl. She demonstrated a wash n go style using her hair products.
Next was local Naturalist and Holistic Hair Healer Ahava Feliciadad. Her presentation was “natural” is a four letter word, F. R. E. E. She spoke about the freedom of being natural.
There were many vendors selling everything from skinny tea, butters, African fashions, and the most beautiful clutches and earrings!
I was honored to be one of two New Jersey based bloggers to be in the Social Media Lounge. It was Spencer ( Curly Empress) and myself. Curlfriends that came over to our corner were gifted mini hair journals or detangling combs. The first visitors were also gifted a full size bottle leave-in sponsored none other than the maker of my favorite scalp and hair oil Janomi hair products. Thanks to Adrienne of Janomi 2 other Curlfriends also received full sized bottles of the oil! We also had a selfie station set up with our Glam light.
The final segment was a question and answer panel where we got to answer direct questions from Curlfriend regarding, working out with natural hair, hair porosity, dryness, and so on. Missed out on the fun? No worries, I got you! Although INHMD is only once a year, if you are following us on social media👉 ( Instagram,Facbook, Twitter ) we will be sure to keep you updated on all the latest happening!
So it’s April, summer is around the corner and I fell off the fitness train! And when I say off I meant all the way off. I got to a place where I wasn’t doing much about my health and believe me before I stepped on the scale my jeans told me! But as I said in my last fitness post👉( Fight Of A Fit Phatty)
“When you fall off don’t stay off!”
I’ve gained 10lbs back and I’ve been eating pretty crappy. I let life get in the way, nope scratch that; I got in my own way.
“Lack of time is actually a lack of priorities”
No excuses, time to get back to health! Knowing is only half the battle, now it time to get back into the fight with this fat!
Here are my chosen weapons of war :
Liquid Gold! A gallon of water a day! Yikes that’s a lot of water! But water is the key to good health! I try to just drink 6 bottles of water so I’m not looking at a gallon all day! If you don’t like plain water add fruit for a good taste and detox!
Hand to Mouth! I mean snacks! Not the fudgy gooey kind, something good and healthy but filling! I love nature valley bars or flavored rice cake minis, fruit, and nuts. Eat something that is filling between meals and make sure it’s not empty calories!
Beat the clock! It’s no secret that most people don’t exercise because of time, but you have to do it. I wish I could go to the gym and rock out for an hour but my life doesn’t work that way! But you can do 20 minute work outs 3 times a day. That will burn the same amount of calories as a continuous hour. I like high intensity workouts that you can do in 20 minutes and burn the same amount of calories or more! Walk at lunch a few days a week, or six 15 minutes bursts if you have to. whatever works for you, do it!
Click fitness! I like to explore Pinterest and YouTube for new exercises. Remember to do the correct forms though! 10 correct moves goes a lot further than 50 incorrect. Last year I could only do ONE push up! I kept trying and now I’m at 10. It’s your heart rate pumping that will be the benefit!
Eyes to see! In every aspect of life we need someone to look to and something to aspire towards. Whether it’s a family member, friend, or favorite social media celebrity, let someone else’s journey inspire you.
Don’t wait until you feel like it! Honestly we will never feel like it most of the time lol! Sometimes I feel like today will be my rest day just like yesterday and I never get anything done.
Reap Wisely! I always say this! Don’t reward yourself with food or punish your self with brutal exercise! Instead reach a goal and purchase something else besides food! If you’ve fallen from fit grace do not over work yourself! Start off slowly and ease your way back in.
I hope you continue to take this journey with me! If you have more tips please leave them in the comments! What are you doing? Share with us on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest!
Now this is usually an icebreaker game played at social gatherings. The concept is as self explanatory. The person tells 2 truth,statements and 1 lie, and the participants have to guess which statement is the lie. This is a lot like trying to navigate your natural hair journey today. There is so much misinformation out there that it almost impossible to tell the truths from the lies!
Between the buzz words, band wagons, and straight BS its no wonder that so many women find it hard to get it right.
Now to be clear, I’m gonna write all three statements as if they are true. As you’re reading try to guess which statement is the lie. Let me know if you guessed correctly 👇leave it in the comments 👇.
1st Statement- Most Hair Grows At The Same Rate: With the exception of underlying medical conditions, age, or severe damage to your hair or scalp, your hair can grow up to 6 inches per year. Now, your hair may shed faster then someone else’s which will make your hair appear to grow slower. Employing methods to reduce the amount of hair that sheds will help you retain more length. Things like protective styling, a good hair regimen (including night time care), proper detangling, and low manipulation will help to reduce hair shedding.
2nd Statement- Natural Hair Should Be Treated The Same As Relaxed Hair: No need to spending tens of dollars, that lead to hundreds of dollars, trying to find the right hair care products for your hair. More than likely you already have what you need. Hair is hair, it’s made of the same thing. It’s not like being natural has changed hair to some fragile, delicate thing that you have to baby. If you’ve been using certain products for years before you went natural why stop now.
3rd Statement- What You Eat Is Important To Your Hair: Your hair starts growing from inside out. So, what you are putting or not putting in your mouth is affecting your hair. This is why the hair, skin, and nail vitamins have become so popular. Yes they do work, no they are not necessary. If you are eating a good diet and drinking enough water, you will not need the HS&N vitamins. For me adding fruits like frozen strawberries to my water, is a 2 for 1 get the hydration from the water and the nutrients from the strawberries. If you have a diet that consists of mainly processed food, high sugar drinks, and bad fats, more than likely your hair tells the story of your bad dietary decisions.
I have heard all of these statements passed along as truth in the natural hair community. However one of these statements is actually not true. Can you guess which one?
Statement number 2 is the lie. Natural hair is very fragile, although it may appear to be stronger than relaxed hair it’s actually not. Also because natural hair is in a “raw” state you need to be careful of the products you use that may easily damage your hair and cause breakage. Relaxed hair can with stand more heat, more twisting, and harsher products because it’s chemically treated. Now I’m not saying that bad hair practices won’t damage relaxed hair too. I’m simply says you need to take a little extra care with your natural hair if you want to see good results.
What are some of the “ lies” that led you wrong on the natural hair journey? We’d love to hear from you? If you can relate to this post, and you like what we are doing, please like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest. Don’t forget to leave your comments below.
Stay tuned for more myth busting maybe the lie that lead you astray will make the next installment of 2 truths 1 lie.
1. Make sure you are speaking the love language of your hair. How, you ask? By knowing your hair’s porosity level.
Trying to love on your hair without speaking its language:
not exactly the ideal love huh?
2. Wine and dine her with tender vittles! Not literally the cat food, but lean proteins like eggs, Salmon, nuts, also brightly colored fruits and vegetables, and Greek yogurt. Just remember what ever you put in your mouth, will show up in your hair. Some of my favorites are spinach, salmon, and almonds.
3. Pour on the love potion, Water! This is the only way to truly add moisture. Drink it, spray it, look for it in your products.
4. Communication is the key! Learn to listen to your hair. You will be able to feel when it needs a trim, or extra attention.
5.Turn up the heat! Wash your hair with higher temperature water, this helps to open the cuticle.
6. Be cool! Rinse your hair with cooler temperature water. This helps to close the cuticle sealing in the moisture .
7. Be gentle. The best thing to dry your hair with is a t-shirt. Using a towel can pull and tug adding stress to your tresses. As long as you are not dying your hair it will not ruin the shirt, so yes its reusable.
8. Some times you have to go deeper. Deep condition every 4-5 weeks. You don’t need to do it every week, but you should at least do it every month to a month and a half.
9. Be clear! Cleanse your hair every 6-8 weeks with either a clarifying shampoo, or ACV Rinse.
10. Get trim. Now the time line depends on your hair and its condition. At least every 8-12 weeks is a good ruler.
11. Profess and protect! After 6 weeks your protective style has lost its protection.
12.Seal the deal! Coat your ends and your edges with a good oil. Castor Oil, Olive Oil, Coconut Oil, these are the three most commonly used.
13. Loc it down. Employ the LOC Method: Liquid ( Water or water based leave -in) Oil ( Oil or butters in the winter) then last- Cream ( cream based leave-in / styler/ alcohol free gel)
14. Lay it on thick! In cooler temperatures replace your hair oil with a hair butter.
15. Trust the process. Love takes time and so will your hair love affair.
Lol I hope you have enjoyed our 15 steps to a love affair with your hair! Humor aside, we know, discovering how to love your hair is the key to a healthy and happy hair journey. What are some of your love gestures to your hair? Did we leave anything out? Please comment and let us know what you think!
Can you believe the real winter has rolled up on us with the quickness? Just a few weeks ago we were wearing shorts for Christmas! Now this cold air has my lips tight like I’ve been baptized in lemon juice! And I’m a kisser so this is no bueno! After shoveling out from Snowmagedon this past weekend my lips were super dry! I have been moisturizing them but this is only a temporary fix. I decided to do some lips service and exfoliate my lips. So, I head to the pantry and whip up DIY Lip Scrub.
Mix all the ingredients together, it should be thick like a paste. Apply a generous amount to your lips and rub them with your fingers, or you can just rub your lips together.
The best thing is you don’t have to worry about getting it in your mouth because all of these items are edible. Wipe off excess with a wet towel or rag. You can repeat until you feel the dry skin has sloughed off. The balance will keep in the refrigerator in a covered container for about 2 weeks.
Be sure to moisturize your lips right after you complete the process.
The winter tends to dry out my skin and hair to the extreme. What about you? Do you have a specific wintering beauty routine? If so we’d love to hear it. Please tell us what you think. Well until next time keep your lips kissable and soft. Muwah
As I was writing this, I thought about how it makes me happy that my sons kiss me as soon as they see me. The other day I was trying to make a YouTube video (for the first time) and my middle son walked in and kissed me as I was taping. Before I could get upset, I laughed at myself. Even though I fussed at him, he came right in, kissed me and kept talking on his phone. I told him later that I was trying to tape and that his kiss was in the video and he thought it was so cool. Even now thinking back on that day it brings me Joy.
Now; for the business of “Cultivating Joy”, the term cultivate is usually used in an agricultural since. One definition means to nurture or help grow. So we are growing Joy here!
1. Acknowledge- See the little beauties that are with you every day. Experience the world through the eyes of gratitude. By taking time to be fully present in the thing you are doing, you are allowing yourself to experience the joy..
2. Connect- Surround yourself with the people, places and things that make you happy. If talking to your BFF or even your BF makes you happy, make an intentional effort to connect with them. If you took a vacation that was your favorite, print out the pictures and hang one or two of them up somewhere that will remind you of the fun!
3. Laugh- In today’s world of social media, there are more than enough Vines, Videos, and Snaps, that you can look up just to get a laugh! I know I love when someone shares a funny clip in the morning! That’s a sure way to get me on your page all day!
4. List Your Loves- it’s just what it sounds like. A list of things you love, it’s almost like a play list. I actually have a love list of bloggers that I can always get inspiration from. I also have a love list of quotes, bible scriptures, and of course songs.
5. Put It On- I used to be a holder onto(er) lol. My favorite perfume, clothes, shoes, what ever. For some reason I would hold onto my favorite things and not use them. I still don’t get why, but what I do get is, I don’t do it anymore. Now I wear my favorite perfume everyday! When I’m feeling a little glum, I get glam! That perks my right up.
For some of us joy is a fleeting emotion. Or something that can only be attained by others. Very often we attach our since of joy to certain accomplishments. These events can contribute to the feeling of joy, however to cultivate authentic joy, you have to look within. Only you can make you happy. What are some ways that you cultivate joy? Tell me in the comments below!