Mae’s Current Natural Hair Care Regimen: January 2013

Hi guys!!!

SO i know that we’re already 13 days in, but I just have to wish you a Happy New Year since this is the FIRST post on NaturalChica.com in 2013!

2012 was an exciting year and I look forward to what’s in store for 2013! I hope all of you are still motivated and working hard towards the goals you have made for this year. Just remember that tiny steps in the right direction eventually lead to large accomplishments…so don’t be afraid to take that first step : )


As my first post, I thought it would be fitting to share with you all my current regimen. I’ve been fully natural now for over 3 years (Big Chop: July 2009 – my how the time has flown) and my regimen is constantly changing as I find what techniques and products work best for my hair in each stage of it’s journey. Before I delve in, I will admit that I have MANY favorite products that I like to rotate between, but what matters most in my regimen is HOW I use the products and of course the styling techniques that go along with them. So here we go…

THE WASH DAY 

I’ll be honest…I used to DREAD when it came time to wash my hair. It wasn’t until I started looking at “wash day” as a time to take a break from my busy week that I really began to enjoy the process and truly learned what worked best for my hair.

Right now, I like washing my hair with shampoo bars. I’m currently using shampoo bars from a company called “Bobeam” (their Cocoa & Rhassoul Clay Bar smells AH-MAZING!) . I wash my hair in the shower, and start by letting the water run through my hair and then separating it into 4 sections with my fingers. I then secure the 4 sections with clamps. Taking the shampoo bar, I lather it near my scalp on the perimeter of the section. I then work the lather with my fingertips throughout the base of the section and then smooth my hair from the base to the ends between my palms. This helps to detangle my hair and I continue detangling with my fingers working from ends to the roots, all while under the running water. Having the water beat down on my hair while finger detangling really helps speed up the process! After detangling, I thoroughly rinse the section and then two -strand twist it. I then repeat this process with the rest of the 3 sections.

CONDITIONING aka SEALING IN THE MOISTURE

So this next step is CRUCIAL to how my hair behaves for the rest of the week, and that is the conditioning step. No matter the season, I’ve found that my hair needs a water-rich heavy cream to seal the moisture in my hair after the cleansing process. Most times I will treat my conditioning step as my styling step as well, and use a  moisture-rich product to directly twist or braid my hair after cleansing. I’ve found that this really cuts down on my total washing/styling time but is still good to my hair : ) The products I’ve been rotating between lately have been Camille Rose Naturals Almond Jai Twisting Butter, CURLS Curl Soufflé – Curl Cream  and OBI Natural Haircare Curl Moisture Cream. The reason why I default to twists or braids for styling is because I’ve found that they are the best for keeping my hair stretched for a week and really helps to prevent severe tangling throughout the course of the week. Although I loved wash n’ go’s when my hair was shorter, I’ve almost had to steer completely clear of them as my hair has gotten longer because my hair gets horribly tangled just over the course of a couple days! Now THAT makes wash day absolutely dreadful. I once spent over an hour trying to detangle my hair BEFORE washing because it was just…that…bad. I have now learned the errors of my ways and twists and braids it is for this head of mine!

However, there are times when my hair is really begging for more moisture, and that’s when I’ll do a steam conditioning treatment with my Huetiful steamer and a conditioner (2 of my faves: Karen’s Body Beautiful Luscious Locks Hair Mask & Eden Body Works Jojoba Monoi Deep Conditioner). What I do is use the conditioner to twist my hair (i’m very heavy-handed with applying the conditioner) and then sit under the steamer for around 30 minutes. I then rinse the conditioner out of my hair (while my hair is still in twists) and proceed with styling, which usually ends up being two-strand twists or braids.

MAINTENANCE

After twisting or braiding my hair, I typically let it dry overnight. The longer I let my hair dry before taking down my twists/braids, the more defined my twist-out/braid-out style is. There are times though when I do want a more “fluffy fro” look, and I’ll take down my hair while it’s slightly damp. The one thing I make sure to do in both cases though is to use a light oil/butter on my fingertips when taking down my twists/braids. My favorites right now are Earth’s Nectar Hair Care Monoi Hair Milk , CURLS Champagne & Caviar Curl Elixir and Koils by Nature Nourishing Hair & Body Butter. This helps to decrease frizz when separating my hair to create a more fuller, but defined look and also adds a nice sheen.

Now if I have a busy week ahead, I rarely twist or braid my hair back up when it’s time to go to bed. I do sleep on a satin pillowcase though to prevent breakage due to friction. Occasionally I will re-twist or re-braid my hair at night, and when I do so, it’s important for me to add more moisture back to my hair so there is actually some amount of moisture to seal in when I use my styling creams. Sometimes it will be as simple as dampening my hair with a spray bottle filled with water and oils (sweet almond, extra virgin olive oil) or using a light leave in conditioner or moisture milk (Current faves: OBI Curl Hydration Spray, Camille Rose Naturals Curl Love Moisture Milk, Karen’s Body Beautiful Sweet Ambrosia, Karen’s Body Beautiful Hair Blossom Moisture Mist, CURLS Cashmere Curls Leave-In Conditioner and  Koils by Nature Moisturizing Shealoe Leave-In Conditioner ).

Now this is what works for me, but hopefully it can give you some ideas on where to start if you’re trying to work out your own hair care regimen this year, just remember to have patience and don’t be afraid to switch up your techniques and/or styling products!

As always, feel free to let me know if you have any questions about my current regimen, and I’ll try my best to respond to as many questions via the comment section below : ) 

Karen’s Body Beautiful Haute Hair Contest!

As some of you may know, Karen from Karen’s Body Beautiful (KBB) recently hosted a classy Haute Hair Affair event in Atlanta (which was a fab event!) and now she is taking it to the next level with the announcement of a Karen’s Body Beautiful Haute Hair contest! I’m especially excited about this contest, because I will be teaming up with KBB and participating in the grand prize in a very special way :)

There are some really great prizes at all the levels of winning, but of course the grand prize stands out. Did I mention that the grand prize winner will be taken on an all-expense paid trip to NY, be pampered in the chic KBB salon, have VIP status at the special 10 yr anniversary Haute Hair event that weekend, model in a photoshoot and (this is where I come in.. *smile*) gets to have brunch with Karen, me, and Kissa (creator of the “I Love My Hair” shirts)! The rules to enter are simple, and all the details can be found below. Good luck to all the entrants!

Be sure to check out ALL the details as the deadline to enter is this Friday!

Karen’s Body Beautiful
Naturally Chic
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Angela Dawson
info@karensbodybeautiful.com
WIN AN ALL-EXPENSE-PAID TRIP TO NEW YORK FROM KAREN’S BODY BEAUTIFUL

Brooklyn, New York (July 28, 2011) – Karen’s Body Beautiful, an all-natural luxury beauty line and spa, announced their “Haute Hair Contest” today. In celebration of beautiful, healthy hair and Karen’s ten year anniversary wearing her hair natural, the brand is hosting a fabulous contest with jaw-dropping prizes, including an all-expense-paid trip to New York. “At Karen’s Body Beautiful, we celebrate healthy hair. I believe no matter how you wear it, everyone deserves healthy hair,” said owner Karen Tappin. Now Karen wants to know what you love about your hairstyle and why it makes you feel confident and beautiful.

To enter, contestants must submit a video or brief essay. Videos must be 90 seconds or less and essays must be one to two paragraphs, with contestants explaining why they think their hair is “haute.” All hair styles and looks are eligible to enter this contest. To be considered for the grand prize, contestants must enter a video submission. For additional details about this contest, please view Karen’s Body Beautiful Haute Hair Contest video.
Contestants can win one of three truly incredible prizes. The grand prize includes in all-expense-paid trip to New York from August 26th to August 28th; pampering spa treatments at Karen’s Body Beautiful Spa; VIP status at the “Haute Hair Affair” on August 27th; $100 worth of covet-worthy KBB products; a fun photoshoot; as well as brunch with Karen, Mae aka “Natural Chica” and Kissa creater of the “I Love My Hair” t-shirt brand. The second place winner will receive a year’s supply of KBB products and a cute KBB tee. Ten third place winners will receive a KBB $50 gift card and tee, as well as a “I Love My Hair” tee.  The submission period ends Friday, August 5, 2011.

For more information about the “Haute Hair Contest” or “Haute Hair Affair”, please view the Haute Hair Contest Video, visit http://www.karensbodybeautiful.com or email info@karensbodybeautiful.com.

About Karen’s Body Beautiful:
Karen’s Body Beautiful is an all-natural luxury beauty line and spa created to provide the purest, high quality products for the body. Established in 2004, the brand promotes the belief that the maintenance and celebration of the body translates to the elevation of the spirit.

[CLOSED] Natural Chica 2 YR Celebration: GIVEAWAY #1 [Karen’s Body Beautiful]

UPDATE: The 10 winners have been announced

I can’t believe that I’m celebrating my 2 year natural hair anniversary along with the 2 yr anniversary of NaturalChica.com and my YouTube channel (Nikkimae2003) this month! The time has flown by and I am extremely thankful for the many blessings that have come my way during this time. I’m especially grateful for those of you that visit the site and interact with me via Twitter, Facebook and YouTube! I’ve really enjoyed getting to know you all and the exchange of information has been wonderful!

To say thank you for your support of the site for the past two years, I have partnered with some great businesses in the natural hair community who have kindly agreed to sponsor giveaways of some GREAT prize packs! They have been extremely generous and I can’t wait to start the giveaways so….

Our first giveaway sponsor is Karen’s Body Beautiful. The owner, Karen Tappin, is no stranger to the natural hair community and has actually been in business for 10 years! I love using her products (my review) but I especially love that Karen is so interactive with her customers and frequently hosts events at her store in New York to spark communication, education and camaraderie (vid recap of one of her events).

THE GIVEAWAY

10 winners will receive a sample pack containing the following items:

Sweet Ambrosia
Butter Love
Ultimate Conditioning Shampoo
Complete Hair Conditioner
Luscious Locks Hair Mask

For info on these products, visit the KBB site: http://www.karensbodybeautiful.com/

CONTEST DETAILS

There will be 10 winners that receive the sample pack
*CONTEST ENDS ON SATURDAY, JULY 9 at 11:59 pm EST*

THE RULES (PLEASE READ CAREFULLY)
Entrants must be U.S.A. residents
Winner must be 18 years & older OR have the permission of their legal guardian if under 18
Winner must be a subscriber to NaturalChica.Com [click on FOLLOW in the right sidebar] &  YouTube Channel: Nikkimae2003

TO ENTER
*Leave a comment to this post stating the following:
– Name
– Email
leave a comment saying what KBB product you would like try

Note: Entries that do not adhere to these rules and guidelines will not be considered. Winners will be selected at random, using a random number generator.

Disclaimer: No purchase necessary. In accepting the prize, the winner acknowledges that NaturalChica.Com may not be held liable for any loss, damages or injury associated with accepting or using this prize(s). This contest is subject to all federal, provincial and municipal laws. Contest open to Continental U.S. only. One entry per person. Winner must contact NaturalChica.Com with winner’s mailing address at mae@naturalchica.com within 5 days of being notified of winning. Failure to respond shall mean that the winner forfeits the prize and another winner will be selected at random.

Mae’s Braid-Out after a Blow-Out [VID TUTORIAL]

Additional tips for well-defined braid-outs

1. When braiding, make sure to pull the base of the braid tight to your scalp. This maximizes length and increases definition throughout the entire section of hair.

2. Near the end of each braid, twist the remaining section of hair. I’ve found that this helps my hair to hold better and also creates more of a spiral curl pattern at the ends of your hair when you unravel your hair.

3. For more length and definition, do smaller braids across your head.

4. To minimize frizziness, put a bit of natural oils on your fingers and smooth over each braid before unraveling. Do this before separating the braids further as well. I actually use a homemade “Sweet Shine” spritz that is simple and easy to make. [Check out the RECIPE here]

5. For more volume, simply separate the braids further after unraveling. The more you separate, the more volume you can achieve with your style!

What are some of YOUR tips for achieving fab braid-outs?

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