Category: how to transitioning from relaxed to natural

How to Prevent and Reduce Heat Damage

flat-iron

Most naturalistas have suffered with it at some point. After all, the obsession with turning your tight coils into slick straight tresses is one that most of us have or have had at some point in our lives.

Yes, slick straight hair looks great but there’s a price to pay when you obsess over having it.

Nonetheless, there are ways to prevent and reduce the damaging effects of heat on the hair.

  1. Lower the heat setting.Rather than straightening your hair at 200 degrees celsius, reduce the heat down by 50 degrees to lessen the chances of any excessive damage.
  2. Prep your hair before you even begin straightening it. For instance, a good deep conditioning treatment before applying heat can make a huge difference in reducing the amount of damage that heat causes. Also, apply heat protectants so that your hair doesn’t suffer from the burn of a flat iron.
  3. Opt for wigs as a quick and easy alternative to straighteners. Wigs are awesome if you feel like changing your hair for a few days or want a snazzy style for a special occasion. Rather than ruining your natural curls, try rocking a high quality wig instead.
  4. Trim off excessively damaged hair the minute you spot it. If you see a kink that’s become limp, snip it off! You’ll save yourself from further damage in the process.

Now it’s your turn. Do you have any hair-saving tips to share? Leave a comment below.

If you liked this post, tweet it and tag us on social media @mycurlsuk.

Till next time x

 

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Nigerian Hairstyles Through The Years

As a young Nigerian girl, hair care and hairstyling were a fundamental part of my childhood.

There wasn’t a day that passed where hair care wasn’t mentioned.

Whether it was “your hair needs fixing” or “it’s time to re-do your hair,” hair was always a topic of conversation and once my aunts started talking about hair, they couldn’t stop.

Memories of having my hair plaited, relaxed and comb flooded through my body as I watched this brilliant video on Nigerian hairstyles through the years.

Some of the styles might seem a bit crazy looking to a non-West African person but they are a part of our culture and history.

One of the styles that I cherish most (but haven’t managed to muster up the bravery to rock it) is threading.

Threading simply involves a piece of wiry thready being wrapped around a small section of hair.

It might not look like the most stylish of hairdos but it sure does make your hair grow!

I swear threading was like the old-school equivalent of the inversion method. It worked a treat.

Take a look at the video below and if you’ve tried one of these hairstyles, leave a comment below.

Here’s to your hair’s happiness,

Victoria xo

 

 

6 Drop Dead Gorgeous Curly Hairstyles For Spring

With the sun shining and the weather heating up, it’s the perfect time to throw away some of the not-so-fun winter protective styles and opt for far more fun natural hairstyles!

I’ve been wearing my hair in braids all winter and now I’m ready to throw them out and rock my curls!

Can I get an Amen in the comments if you’re feeling the same?

The problem with wearing braids, weaves or other protective styles that don’t involve your real hair is that you get so used to them that it becomes difficult to remember how to style and care for your real hair.

I’ve gone through this so many times which is why I’ve been resistant to wearing my hair in braids for long periods.

In fact, this is the first year in a very long time where I’ve worn braids the whole of winter. I never want to be one of those people who is so obsessed with fake hair that I have no idea how to handle my real curls.

So what do you do when you’ve had your hair in braids, weaves etc and can’t remember how to style your natural hair?

You head over to THIS blog and read a blog post like this 🙂

To give you a sprinkle of hairspiration, we’re sharing 6 of the most drop dead gorgeous curly hairstyles for spring.

Take a look at the pictures below and leave a comment sharing which style you love the most.

 curly hairstyles for spring

 

Wishing you a wonderful Easter,

Victoria x

3 Stunning Natural Beauty Queens Who Are Rocking The Professional World

Here at mycurls.co.uk, we pride ourselves on being open-minded and tolerant. We like to look at arguments from both sides of the fence; we think compassion is an all-too-rarefied commodity in today’s cut-throat environment.

There are limits, however – and nothing gets our goat quite like that being told that our natural hair is “unprofessional” or “unsuitable for the workplace”.

Excuse me, what?

It’s true: it happens, it’s damaging (and plays no small part in the growing number of women with natural hair who suffer from self-esteem issues), and it needs to stop.

What better way to end this onslaught of bigotry than by starting a conversation about the wildly successful women who refuse to abandon their curls for the sake of “professionalism”? Read on to discover the three queens we’ve chosen to profile for this piece.

1.
Julee Wilson‘s first steps in the professional world were as humble as they could be. After being told numerous times that her preference for wearing her Afro hair naturally was “unprofessional”, she finally landed a position an assistant to the Editor-In-Chief of Real Simple Magazine.

julee wilson

Needless to say, her natural hair didn’t hinder her journalistic talent to any degree – a fact made evident by her meteoric rise to the Staff Fashion Editor in two years, becoming the first African-American woman to do so.

Where is she now?

Queen Wilson now plies her trade as the Style & Beauty Editor for the Huffington Post’s Black Voices project, making frequent reference to her roots (pun intended!) through articles and series such as Curly Hair Chronicles, in which she discusses the very problem she had to overcome to get to where she is today.

 


2.
Denise Young Smith: a name you should get used to because you’re going to be hearing it a lot over the next few years. After earning her bachelor’s degree in Communications and a master’s degree in Organisational Management from Grambling State University, she made her first corporate inroads when contributed HR and management consulting to companies such as Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers portfolio companies.

Denise Young Smith

It wasn’t until 1997, when she joined Apple (then still a fledgling, albeit rapidly-expanding, company) that she really started making waves, though. She has since served the company in several key HR roles, not least among them sitting on the team that crafted Apple’s retail organisation – which today welcomes more than one million people every day, and has re-defined what the word retail means to the corporate world.


Where is she now?
Ms. Smith was recently chosen as Apple’s Vice President of Worldwide Human Resources – a position whose responsibilities include attracting and retaining talent at Apple, and reports to none other than Tim Cook, the CEO, himself.

3.
Kay Wilson Stallings earned her master’s degree at the University of Illinois, and ever since has been charting an astonishing rise through the ranks of corporate television.

Starting out as a manager at Nickelodeon, within ten years she’d become the Vice President of Production and Development – the first African-American woman to hold the title. She was primarily responsible for the development of such adored television programs as “Yo Gabba Gabba!”, “Lazytown” and “Wonder Pets”, and shows no sign of slowing either her creative juices or her impressive ambition.

Kay Wilson Stallings
Where is she now?
Ms. Stallings currently works her naturally-curled head off as Senior Vice President for Sesame Street, where she has an enormous amount of influence over what our children are exposed to on television’s most-loved children’s program.

There they are: three gloriously natural women sticking it to the Man one curl at a time.

Do YOU have any similar success stories you’d like to share?

Let us know in the comments below!

How Can I Find Out The Texture Of My Hair?

How do I figure out my hair type?

I have no clue what my hair type or texture is, help!

Is my hair 4b, 4c or 4a? I have no idea!

These are just a few questions that many naturalistas ask when it comes to the whole hair type debacle.

We recently came across a brilliant chart by the folks at BuzzFeed that makes finding out your hair type super quick and easy!

Take a look at it below and in the comments tell us what your hair type is based on the chart!

 

hair type chart by buzzfeed

Hair Type Chart by @BuzzFeed

PS. It’s perfectly normal to have several hair types! Mine varies from 3b to 4b which means I have a lot of textures to deal with, understand and manage. It’s not always easy dealing with multiple hair textures but it is a lot of fun 🙂

Here’s to knowing more about your hair and loving every inch of it!

As always, if you have a burning hair care question tweet it to us @mycurlsuk and we’ll answer it in an upcoming blog post.

Victoria xo

Hair Overwhelm: Has The Natural Hair Movement Has Caused More Harm Than Good?

natural hair overwhelm

As much as I love being a naturalista and I’m incredibly proud of how far the natural hair scene has progressed over the past decade or so, I can’t help but sometimes feel very overwhelmed by the amount of information, advice and trends that constantly crop up. The hardest thing is the fact that much of the advice is contradictory.

Some naturals claim that it’s great to detangle with a wide-toothed comb whilst others say that we should abandon combs all together!

Some say that brushes are best whilst others say that our fingers are the only combs we need. Which is it? What do you do?

To comb or not to comb? That is the question!

Then there are the claims about naturals who’ve achieved rapid hair growth through regimens like the LOC and inversion methods.

If you’ve tried either, you might have found a hair growth panacea that works for you or you might have discovered that too much of any regime simply drives you and your hair nuts!

I’ve been natural for several years now and I’ve been following the natural hair movement for probably around 8 years (yes, it’s been that long). Back in the day there were simply a few forums that catered to women who wanted healthier, longer hair but nowadays, there are thousands, perhaps tens of thousands of blogs, websites, forums, Instagram accounts and Facebook pages that share a plethora of advice on natural hair care.

Whilst it’s great that we have so much more information available, it also has a downside.

Namely, the fact that when there’s too much information, you don’t know where to look or where to start.

It can be difficult.

So this begs the question, how do naturalistas find both balance and clarity in a wold that’s filled with contradictory advice and too many options?

How do we avoid becoming the victims of a choice paradox?

How do we find our own unique path to healthier hair? 

What’s the solution?

Now, I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Have you ever felt overwhelmed by the overload in hair care information?

How do you deal with it?

Leave a comment below sharing how you feel.

PS. This might have been my most honest and open blog post yet but I’ve come to realise that honesty and vulnerability are catalysts for personal growth. I hope that in sharing how I feel, I’ll open up discourse for other women who might be feeling the same way.

Here’s to hair happiness,

Victoria xo.

How to keep your hair protected during the winter

It’s common knowledge that winter weather can wreak havoc on natural hair. It’s therefore crucial that in these very cold months, you keep your hair protected and cared for.natural hair protection

 

As a busy woman who’s preoccupied with your career, life and family, it’s important that you find ways to make protecting your hair as easy and effortless as possible.

So how can you do this?

 

One onatural hair protectionf our favourite ways to care for your hair during the winter months is to simply wrap it up by keeping it as covered as possible.

natural hair protection

 

 

 

You can do this by playing with scarves, head-ties, hats and headbands.

 

What’s great about using accessories to protect your hair is that not only does your hair stay in top notch condition, it also keeps you warm and who doesn’t want to be warm during when it’s freezing outside?

 

natural hair protection

What’s your favourite hair accessory for the winter season?

 

Leave a comment below sharing it with us.

Victoria

Founder, MyCurls.co.uk.

Natural Hair Rules: 7 Commandments Every Curly Girl Needs To Follow

natural hair rules

Ever catch yourself look at girls with enviable poker straight hair and wonder what a ball of fuzz your curly hair is? Fret not! HereĂ­s a detailed guide on how to unlock those dread locks and transform into a goddess with a curly and bouncy gorgeous mane and ingredients to use to pamper your lustrous locks.

Oiling your hair before washing it has proved to be a great conditioner. Curly hair responds very well to jojoba and olive oil.

Deep conditioning always helps cases of unmanageable frizzy hair. In emergency situations, when you have to head out for a hot date or that fancy evening soiree, the best thing to do to control your curly hair would be deep conditioning. Find a protein conditioner that suits you and apply a dime size dollop into your hands and massage into your scalp. This keeps it soft and shiny for the rest of the day and also adds an extra texture to your mane. Natural conditioners like shea butter are very safe to use.

Most curly haired girls are conscious about their texture and often resort to styling methods to straighten out their hair and hide that uneven curly and wavy texture. These methods involve heating tools such as flat irons and clampers. You might want to ditch them as heating your curly hair will only make it weak from the roots and brittle in texture, thereby making your hair look like a frizzy mess.

In a hot weather, it is best to use mild shampoos and not ones that have strong chemicals that damage your hair. In case of too much humidity, when you sweat and you feel like washing your hair every day after a long day at work, use baby shampoo. The strong chemicals in regular shampoo makes curly hair all the more difficult to maintain stripping it from its natural oils from the scalp and with an extra frizz added to your hair. Using a mild shampoo for everyday use or in cases when you want to wash your hair more than the regular thrice a week regime, will make it soft and moisturized.

Split with the dead ends. Going to a hair salon and getting a short trim and cutting your split ends will enable your curly hair to grow stronger and make it look luscious and bouncy rather than rough and erratic.

Always use a wide toothed comb. This is not the eighties. You do not want an afro on your head and you know you have to detangle your hair ASAP! But how will you, with your hair getting stuck in those tiny bristles of that comb? So unless you want to indulge in an arm wrestle by yanking your brush out of your hair, detangle your hair with your fingers and a wide toothed comb and use this comb every day to brush your hair.

Applying salon products like hair serums and hair mousse while proving to be helpful could be very tricky to use. You do not want your hair dripping with greasiness for someone to be able soak it with a paper towel. Use hair products with great care and always scrunch them into your curls. Do not layer it all over your hair into a greasy lump. Honey with a tea spoon of milk gives a nice bounce just like a hair product would

And last but not the least, love yourself including those curls. Being confident is the best gift you could give your hair and yourself. You are unique and beautiful that way. Stay gorgeous.

Natural Hair Treatments: 4 Natural Ingredients Afro Hair Loves.

curly hair craves

Do you envy girls who hop out of the shower with silky straight hair while you remain tangled in your curly labyrinths?

Then, youĂ­d be surprised to know that if you have curls like ringlets, you own one of the most enviable crown of heads.

Those girls you envy spend hours to get what you have been naturally gifted. So, instead of fighting those curls, work with them and make them stunning.

If you start adoring your hair and follow four simple tips provided herein, curly hair can make you look like a goddess every day.

Natural Oils
Oils are curly hairĂ­s best friend and although itĂ­s tempting to ditch the traditional regimen of oiling, nothing soothes your hair more than this session of a few minutes. Sometimes curlies have difficulty finding oils that don’t give their hair the appearance of being dunked in a grease fryer. Certain oils mentioned here would help you combat the havoc:

  • Extra Virgin Coconut Oil – What it does is that it penetrates hair shaft; this is why it provides moisture.
  • Grapeseed Oil – What it does is that it protects your hair temperature. You can also use it to fight dandruff.
  • Sweet Almond Oil seals in moisture and soothes the hair shaft, which is an addition to highly porous hair.
  • Jojoba Oil – It balances the production of scalp’s sebum.

Although olive oil and castor oil are heavy oils that are popular in the naturally curly hair community, these highly beneficial light oils can also be used for healthy hair.
Moisturize and Condition
Curly hair requires regular moisturising so that they do not break or frizz with dryness. The most important requirement is to find the right product that suites your hair. A shampoo that would suite one set of curly hair may not suite the other. Also, conditioning is a must after every shampoo.
Protein
Another significant treatment is to maintain the protein balance of your curls. A protein treatment has different protein properties that attach directly to the hair follicle and harden the cuticle layer. This places a barrier around the follicle, which protects it from further damage. There are four types of protein conditioner treatments: protein packs, re-constructors, deep penetrating treatments, and light protein treatments. The hair’s current condition will decide the type of protein conditioner needed for treatment. Use a re-constructor for severely damaged hair. For moderately damaged hair, use a deep penetrating treatment. For slight damage and routine treatments, use protein packs or light treatments. There are a lot of products in the market but only trustworthy ones should be used.
Heat Free Styling
Heat Styling Tools such as Flat Irons or Curling Irons do nothing but damage your locks and, turn your hair into a dry, brittle, unhealthy mess since you are basically frying your hair when using them. So the first thing you should do is get your split ends cut off, you can get this done at your local hair stylist of even do it yourself if you dare. As a curly haired girl, hopefully you already know that unless it’s Halloween and you’re in need of an afro, you should avoid blow drying or brushing your hair because it will just go Poof! To save the embarrassment, you can use styling products such as serums and gels and work them gently with your fingers.

Love is always reciprocated. When you love your hair and follow the above four simple techniques, they love you back by giving hassle free good and gorgeous hair days.

If your curls are in need of some TLC, head over to our online store to find a product that your tresses will love.

Natural Hair Role Model: Lupita Nyong’o

lupita blog post Within the space of a few months, Lupita Nyong’o has quickly become one of the most admired actresses in Hollywood.

Why?

Well, she’s undeniably stunning, super smart and exceptionally talented.

However, what I admire most about Lupita is despite living in a world that celebrates a very narrow and one-dimensional perception of beauty, Lupita has managed to effortlessly show that beauty is as diverse and fluid as the earth itself.

Beauty is not one colour, one complexion, one hair type or one skin tone.

Beauty is not one-sized or one dimensional. Beauty is not narrow, fragile or fearful.

Beauty is colourful, florescent, natural and graceful.

Beauty is vibrant, energetic, charming and brave.

These are EXACTLY the qualities that Lupita embodies and I am so glad to see that because of her, Hollywood (and the wider world at large) is starting to recognise the range of beauty that exists in the world.

After seeing Lupita grace the red carpet multiple times earlier this year I was stunned. However, when I heard her give this speech (below) my admiration for her grew ten fold.

Watch the video below and leave a comment that shares one thing you learnt from her speech.

If you liked this post and want more hair care inspiration and hair tips, join our curly community (it’s free!).