Tag Archives: two strand twists

Okay! I’m reloaded!

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I am at work right now with an extra large Dunkin Donuts French Vanilla coffee on my desk, hoping that it will have magical powers revive me.  I’m running on about 4 hours of sleep.

I was here at work yesterday minding my own business looking for youtube videos that had styling options for short locs (although technically I’m so not close to being locked yet, but I can still style up these two strand twists).  I came across this video from tbey82. (You’ll have to watch on youtube). 

I LOVED her parts.  They were exactly the size that I had wanted when I rolled into Nubian Kinks on Saturday.  There was actually a young girl working there with roughly the same size parts and when I asked Luna to make my parts like hers, she didn’t want to.  “You don’t want big locs, you want smaller ones” she kept saying.  I kept telling her “Not too small Luna” and honestly she didn’t make them small…  I just wanted them bigger.

One thing I noticed about tbey82’s parts is that she had three rows in the back of her head before the rows that begin over her ears.  (You can see this at about 2:12 into the video).  Luna gave me four rows back there.  **sigh**  That wasn’t what I wanted.  Also Luna’s parts in my hair were rectangles.  I wanted square parts.  I know that in the end it doesn’t REALLY matter, and I had resigned myself to be okay with Luna’s parts, but when I saw tbey82’s video yesterday something hit me.  So, I went home last night, and spend six and a half hours talking down Luna’s twists and creating my own. I didn’t get to sleep until almost 3am and needed to be up for work by 7.  Honestly I did 100% of my twists over completely.  And I LOVE it.  Except for one or two twists in the middle of my head that are bigger than I’d like them to be, (I’ll fix those tonight) I’m totally happy with my hair and can finally begin this process.  FINALLY.

Yes yes yes.  I went to a salon and paid money for something, then four days later took it down and did my own thing anyway.  But I’m KNOW I’m not the only one who has done that.  Don’t act like you haven’t done it!  And I have no regrets.  Well, ok, I have one… I should have done this sooner. 🙂  I think when Irene wouldn’t let me be great and I tried to start my locs myself, I was expecting these huge full delicious thick twists, and when I twisted up a few rows in the back and saw these scalpy pathetic looking twists I figured I wasn’t doing something right and needed to go to a  salon.  But honestly when I left Nubian Kinks, I still had scalpy pathetic looking twists.  That’s just the way my hair is apparently.  Once I realized that no matter what I did or WHO started my locs, scalpy twists were more than likely going to be the end result, it hit me that I didn’t do anything wrong the first time, and that I COULD start my locs on my own. Plus as the months go by, the twists will puff up as they loc and the scalpiness will disappear.

So lessons learned, all a part of the process.  My legs and feet are tired from standing in the bathroom for hours trying to angle my mirrors correctly to see the back of my head.  My arms are tired from all that twisting.  My body is tired from lack of proper sleep.  But it’s all good.  I’m happy.  Pics to come.

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Locked and Loaded!

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After a brief moment of panic on Saturday morning when I ran into crazy traffic at the Brooklyn Bridge exit on the FDR Drive and thinking I’d miss my appointment AGAIN, I am officially locked and loaded.

I went to Nubian Kinks in Brooklyn and met with Luna who started my locs for me. She washed my hair, gave me a steam treatment, then started twisting.  I am 80% happy with my parts.  I would have done some things differently and maybe made them a little bigger, but overall I’m ok with them because I know that they will shift and change over time.  I can always combine if I want to, and honestly I *may* readjust some of these parts over the weekend.  We’ll see.  My only complaint was that Luna was quite heavy handed with the oils she put in my hair and when I left the salon my twists were literally DRIPPING with oil.  I mean DRIPPING like I had a jherri curl.  I grabbed some napkins in Starbucks while waiting for my friend to meet me after my hair appointment and used them to squeeze out some of the oils in my hair.  The napkins were soaked with the excess oil.  I didn’t even want to think about leaving all of that in my hair for a week or more, so I came home, bought a wig cap from the nearby beauty supply store and washed my hair…  again.  Then because I wasn’t feeling the flat lifeless look of my starter locs, I did bantu knots for each twists and rocked a bantu knot out for work today, aka The Big Reveal.  I’ll probably wear my hair like this until the coils fall, which will hopefully take me into next weekend.  Overall, I’m happy with my experience at Nubian Kinks and would return there again for another appointment – although next time I’d definitely ask Luna to lighten up on the oil.  For the most part tho I intend to maintain at home.

Here are some pics.  I took these with my phone so they aren’t the best quality.  I PROMISE I’ll have better pics later this week.

This is right after my hair appointment waiting for my friend in Target.  The twists look good but they were greasy to the touch from all of the oil. (You see what aisle I’m in, right?  I’m already looking at hair stuff for my new starter locs!)

This is is a pic from this morning, my bantu knot out.  Scalpy but that’s to be expected.  I’m typing this up at about 11pm, and they’ve already loosed up a little.

I just sleep with a satin bonnet so I don’t flaten it out… and that’s about it.  The waiting game begins.  Not sure if I’m gonna wash weekly or very two weeks.  Guess that’ll depend on how much time I have this coming weekend and how my scalp feels.

Adjustments To The Plan

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So over the weekend I had a chance to really think some things over. I did some test coils over the weekend just to see how they’d stand up to the humidity, getting wet in the shower and my workouts. If I were grading them, the comb coils would probably receive a C+ for the semester. In theory they are a good way to start locs, that’s how my first set was started, but back then I wasn’t working out regularly like I am now, and I can’t lie, I was less concerned with my appearance back then.  Plus I don’t even think I knew there were other methods to start locs.

Things are different now, so I decided to rethink my starter method. I’ll still have to endure end of summer humidity for a few weeks in addition to my daily workouts as I try to continue to lose weight, so comb/finger coils would not be the best way to go.  So I considered two strand twists. Less unraveling than comb coils initially, but I’ve never been a huge fan of what I like to call the “Miss Celie Look.” At least that’s who I thought I looked like  after trying out two strand twists on myself a few months ago.  They just looked scalpy and scraggly and SO not me.  Now please don’t misunderstand me. I don’t like the look ON ME, I’m not speaking for anyone else. My hair was shorter when I first attempted the style though, and I definitely have more length now.  I do think that two strand twists can look good on other women, just not on me.

Then I remembered there is a variation of the two strand twist: the three strand method.  Three strand twists  are thicker than two strand twists, unravel less and can hide some of that initial scalpiness that comes with all that parting. The technique is a little difficult to master but I did a test twist after checking out this tutorial that does an excellent job at explaining the technique.

I’m pretty good with braiding and twisting, its just a knack I guess, so if I can master this technique and the partings, this is the method I’ll probably be using to start my new set of locs.

The fun has returned to my natural hair!

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The awesome thing about deciding on a date for my loc journey is that I have a whole month (30 days as of today) to decide on some things.

What method will I use to start my locs?  How thick do I want my locs to be?  What products will I use to shampoo, condition and twist my locs?  Palm rolling or interlocking?  Will I color my hair beforehand?  I do have some answers to these questions, although things may change between now and August 29th.

As of right now I’m going with the comb/finger coil method to start my locs.  In the past I did say that I wanted to begin my locs with two strand twists, and that MAY be a possibility, but aesthetically I have never liked the TST look on me outside of the house.  Meaning that I’d do TST’s to prep for a style but was never comfortable leaving my house like that.  For me, TST’s look better when the hair has a bit of length to it.  Just my own personal opinion.  My hair is certainly longer than it was the last time I attempted to do TST’s which is why I say that it MAY be a possibility, but I doubt it.  Plus comb/finger coils are easier for me to do, and quicker.  The comb coil method is also how my first set was started by my loctician which ended up being a great starter method for my hair type.

I did want to use the Fauryn78 method of coils to loc my hair, which is how she loced her hair two different times, but I tried a test coil this morning and wasn’t too happy with how it turned out. I’m only testing this on one little section of hair, literally just took out a yarn twists, wet it, put a little loc pomade on it and tried to coil it up.  It looked…  like a teeny tiny coil, which isn’t really the look I’m going for.

I may try to practice it again and see if I can get it right, but if not I’ll save the style for when my locs are a little more mature.

I want my locs to be thicker than my last set.  I’ve always loved thick luscious locs and figured now is a great opportunity to get them, so I’ll be parting pretty big, using this method. (Start at 1:15).

I’m pretty good at parting my hair since I’ve done pretty much every set of kinky, puffy or yarn twists I’ve had in my hair for the past year and a half.  The bathroom is already rigged up with my mirrors and lighting and everything I will need.  Who knew that what I was doing all that time was just practicing for the big test, starting my own locs.

The reason I chose her method of starting locs is because she has locs that are the thickness that I’d eventually like my locs to be.  We also have similar hair types.  This is a video of her locs about a year later.  (You can FF to 2:39 and mute it cause her music is LOUD!)

Now.  Products.  There was a brief moment when I *thought* I was locking my hair back in March of 2010 when I had my loctician add kinky human hair to my own hair.  For 8 months I went on with that charade and during that time I developed an absolute LOVE for the Nubian Kinks Locing Pomade.  So much so that I bought three jars of the stuff because they tended to run out very quickly on their website.  When they DID have the pomade in stock it took them forever to send it out.  So, since I’m in NYC and they’re in Brooklyn,  I called to have the receptionist put three jars aside for me, and I went to pick them up one evening after work.

It was a short lived loc journey (fortunately) and once I realized it, I took down those “locs”, slapped some kinky twists in my hair, and the Nubian Kinks Loc Pomade took a place in the refrigerator to preserve since I wasn’t using them.  I bought three jars, and only ended up using maybe 3/4 of the first one before the hiatus.  The other two are patiently waiting for me in my fridge, preserved specifically for this new journey.

I haven’t used any of the super expensive Whole Foods type shampoos and conditioners I was using as a loose natural.  I am pretty sure I still have some of them on my Product Junkie shelf in my linen closet, but I’d have to check.  I’ve just been using cheapy Herbal Essences Hello Hydration to wash my kinky twists and yarn twists for the past few months.  I am very very lazy with my hair when it’s all kinky twisted up and thank goodness I have very strong hair that can survive just about anything.  I’ve washed maybe every three weeks or so?  Told you.  Lazy.  When I take the yarn twists out though, I’ll be sure to wash and deep condition my hair with something lush and fabulous and prep my hair very well for what’s to come.

Palm Rolling or Interlocking?  Palm rolling seems to be the way to go for now, and I may try interlocking when my locs are a bit more mature, and because I workout pretty consistently and interlocking, if I can get the hang of it, would be a great way to go since the locs wouldn’t unravel at the root.  I am not sure how I’ll handle my daily workouts with my locs until then, but I’ll make it work.

I’d love to color my hair before I start this set of locs, but I’m not sure if I”ll have time.  Ideally the smart thing to do would be to color my hair the weekend before I start my locs, then leave my hair out of kinky twists that week to give it a rest before I start my locs, but since I’m like 100% allergic to having my loose hair out for longer than a few hours between sets of kinky twists, I’m not sure how I’m going to do that.  I *could* color the same day I loc, but I want to make sure I’ve got all of those chemicals out of my hair since I won’t be able to wash my hair for a few weeks until my locs set. We’ll see what happens. I’ll probably just use one of the Textures and Tones or Dark and Lovely box colors, just to lighten up my hair a little.  No crazy experiments with professional hair color and developer and all of that nonsense.

So that’s where things stand right now.  Of course everything is subject to change.  Can you tell I’m excited?  I’ve been scouring youtube and rereading Lonnice Brittenum Bonner’s book which really helped me a great deal on my first loc journey, before the days of youtube and blogs.  I said earlier that the awesome thing about having a date for my loc journey is that I have a whole month to decide on some things.  The not so awesome thing about having a date for my loc journey is that I wanna loc NOW!  I’m itching to get started!  But I’ll wait because I really am NOT ready now.  This time, these 30 days, will be spent getting my mind and my environment ready for what’s to come.  This is a lifelong decision.  Seriously I am like 100000000% sure that I’ll NEVER take down another set of locs! EVER.  AGAIN.  EVER.  So I want to make sure I get this right, so I never have to do it again.

On a whim yesterday morning, I took down one of my yarn twists, just to see what I’d have to work with when the time came to loc.  Here’s a pic of a mini finger coil.  My hair is 6.5 inches stretched, probably the longest it’s been since I took down my first set of locs at the end of 2009 and got my hair trimmed to get rid of the damaged ends.  It really is a testament to  how leaving your hair alone will really facilitate growth.

Holiday Party Hair, Dealing with Breakage and Finding my HG Condish (for now..)

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I have GOT to get better at putting up links.  I’ll try.  Really.  I will.

Okay, so here are some pics of my hair for my company’s holiday party on Wednesday.  All I did was take out the flat twists in the pics in the previous post and put my hair up in the world famous updo.  This is actually the second day of the updo.  It was raining and humid outside so my hair poofed up but it actually made my hair look fuller and bigger so I was okay with it.

So I’ve been in a bit of a struggle with my hair in the past few days.  I had to wash it on Wednesday night because my scalp was itching like MAD after not being washed for almost two weeks.  But mid week washing is  a bad idea and I went to work on Thursday with the ugliest puff ever.  😦  I hate puffs.  I co-washed again Thursday night because I tried to style my hair for the next day but it was just tangled, unhappy and full of product.  So I washed, but didn’t have time to do a DC.  I lost ALOT of hair in the shower.  Very scary.  I’m not sure if it’s stress or a protein moisture balance issue or what.  So I decided to try some things and see if I can figure out why my hair is breaking so much.

No henna this month.  I realized that henna released my curl pattern a bit which is great, but I’m wondering if all that stretching has made my hair weaker in the process.  My hair is already SUPER fine, so I’m thinking that this may be the culprit.  Kinda sucks that I came to this conclusion AFTER buying more henna from the henna for hair website.  I’m sure I’ll use it eventually or sell it if I decide not to use it anymore.

Shampoo- I can’t remember the last time I actually used at honest to goodness SHAMPOO in my hair.  I’ve usually lo-pooed or co-washed. So this morning I decided to totally strip my hair of everything and start again.  So I washed with TJ’s Nourish Spa shampoo, (No cones or sulfates, but still a shampoo), did an Aphogee Two-Step and a DevaCurl One C/Aubrey Organics HoneySuckle Rose/olive oil DC.  Right now it’s twisted with a bit of One C, Amla and Olive Heavy Cream and some Olive and Honey Hydrating Balm.  Tomorrow it will probably go up in the world famous updo.  If I have time Tuesday night I’ll probably do some flat twists and leave those in for the rest of the week.  And I probably WILL have time since I’ll finally be done with classes for the semester.  🙂

I was considering using my Afroveda products this time around, but decided to stick with Qhemet because I like the soft hold.  I just HAVE to stop being so heavy handed with my application!  I’ve washed my hair maybe three times in the past 4 days, the last time because I tried to style my hair and it was full of product.  Blech.

And now…. an announcement.

I have found my HG conditioner!

Seriously, I am in LOVE with this stuff!

It smells DIVINE, no harsh chemicals (no sulfates, no cones, no parabens) and it has absolutely THE best slip of any conditioner I’ve tried so far and I’ve tried PLENTY.  I put this conditioner in my hair and my hair is like “AHHHHH!!!”  and instantly detangles with just a little finger combing from me.  It also minomizes shrinkage when I twist my hair wet.  It’s SO fabulous I went to Ricky’s and bought the big 35 dollar bottle.  I know, I know.  But it’s sooo worth it.  This stuff is GOLDEN.  So far I’ve used it as a co-wash, a DC and a leave in.  Fabulous!

Monday/Tuesday

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So the twist out came out really really nice!

For the most part this was what I was hoping for.  The last few times I did this I had absolutely NO definition.  The KCKT/BRBC/KCCC combo gave me what I was looking for.  By the end of the day though my hair was really poofy!  I wasn’t expecting that at all.  I guess it makes sense as the hair loosens itself from the pattern of the twistouts.  It was kinda cute and made my hair bigger which I didn’t mind at all.

The second day tho didn’t go quite as well.  I wasn’t sure how to sleep on it, so I just wet a few bits of frizzy hair with a spray bottle mix of water and Oyin honey hemp condish, retwisted them (not all… just the frizzy ones) and slept sans scarf on my satin pillowcase.  I woke up to more fizz. **sigh**  Well.. not so much frizz but the hair wasn’t as defined as it had been the first day.

I had no idea what I was gonna do with it and I was running out of time this morning.  Even the updo wasn’t working for me… so into a frohawk it went…

(That first hawk pic makes it look like I have a bald patch or something, but I don’t.. it was just the flash on my scalp).

I hate that I love this style so much. On the one hand it really showcases how much my hair has grown in the past few months.  But on the other hand, not only are my ends all out, I am afraid to wear the style to work because you know that can go either way.  I dressed myself up in a skirt and blouse and my low heeled boots so the hair wouldn’t look so severe.  A young woman I worked with loved it… but she’s Black and transitioning to natural so she “gets it”.  This is my hair.  This is how it grows.  I mean it doesn’t grow into a frohawk, but you know what I mean.  She gets it tho.  I’m afraid others may not. Only time will tell.

Although I had a GRAND old time messing around with my hair these past two days (that’s sarcasm just in case you were wondering), the pressure to come up with a workable style in the mornings when I need to get my ass outta this house and off to work is a bit much.  So when I got home tonight I just wet my hair with a spray bottle of water and Oyin Honey Hemp Condish, sectioned off the hair in the front, twisted it up,and pulled the back into two flat twists.  I should have added some moisturizer to the ends of my hair before I did tucked them in there, just to preserve the ends a bit, but it had already taken me two tries each to get these to look somewhat uniform and normal and I had NO desire to take them out and redo them a third time.  I’m hoping to leave these in for the remainder of the week.. or at the most, have to take them out later on in the week (this time moisturizing the ends) and redo them again if needed.

(Pardon the shiny ass forehead…. and the kinda crazy part… and the little white bits in the twists.. for some reason, the BRBC/KCCC combo does that when it’s wet, but the white bits disappear when the hair is dry).

Okay so yeah.  Nothing fancy here, just want to give me and my hair a break for a while.  I also realized that if I really wanted to, I could take the time and do tiny twists on my whole head that might actually last a week if I take care of them.. but ugh.  I just can’t be bothered.  If I want to do that I think I’ll just splurge and pay someone to do it for me.  CBB.

The first week…Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday

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Mkay.  So.  I was going along pretty well this week.  I’ve noticed significant growth since June which is nice.  It’s only a few inches but that really makes a difference because I can actually style my hair now. It’s a great feeling.

So Friday night I put my hair in two strand twists to dry after washing and on Saturday morning I separated them with some KBB Hair Milk on my hands to prevent frizz, and turned each twists into two twists, so I made them smaller.

I kept those in until Monday and took them out.  And I STILL hate twist outs.  UGH!  😦  It really is a style that does NOT look good on me, probably because my hair isn’t long enough to hang down after I take them out.  It all ends up looking like a big old frizzball.  So I turned them in the familiar updo leaving the twist outs loose in the front.  I felt like I was having deja vu.  My hair was soft though and pretty shiny courtesy of my washing routine from Friday.  I was pleased and left the house happy and confident.

Tuesday – Same style on second day hair.  I *think* I just retwisted before I went to bed and fluffed out in the AM and pulled it into the undo again.  It didn’t look as hot as it did on Monday, I called it my Sideshow Bob look.

Tuesday Night – Instead of two strand twists I tried flat twisting the back and two strand twisting the front.  The back came out reallly curly and cute and confirmed for me that flat twists can certain me an alternative for me to the two strand AND take less time do to.  The result was a funky fro hawk.  Only two complaints about it.  One, the hair at the nape of my neck is longer and has a looser curl pattern that my other hair to the hawk kinda looked like a hawk mullet, longer in the back, so that was fun.  Also it was a super cool look and I LOVED it, just wasn’t so sure about wearing it to work.  It mighta been too…edgy I think. (PS – Those are combs, not a banana clip which probably was the reason why the back looked so long.. I’m sure I could have fixed that part up with some hair pins or something.  Maybe next time.)

So Wednesday night I came home and intended to do my flat twists again but my hair wasn’t cooperating with me.  It seemed…  too gunky, like filled with product.  If I had taken the time to work through it I probably would have been okay, but my fool ass decided to wash my damn hair in the middle of the week.  Needless to day I went to bed after midnight, went through quite a few products, realized wash and go is something I will NOT be doing any time soon, at least not until it gets warmer, and woke up with the DRIEST hair EVER.   I had NO idea what to do with it, so I brushed it up into a crazy looking hot mess of a style and went to work.  It looked…  not good…. and by the end of the day it was sooooo dry and probably looked it too.  😦  My poor hair.  I felt bad because I know I looked a hot mess, but I also felt bad for my hair!

I saw a video on youtube that had a cute little tutorial on how to achieve the Corinne Bailey Rae look which involved flat twists and bantu knots at the ends.

 

So when I got home tonight I bathed my poor sad looking dry hair with the Chicoro method of moisturizing the hair, (water with condish – I used Oyin Honey Hemp – in a spray bottle, a liquid moisturizer – I used coconut oil – and a thicker moisturizer – I used Qhemet Olive and Honey hydrating balm) and flat twisted and bantu knotted the ends.  I’m gonna let it air dry over night (my fool ass used heat last night like a dummy, so I want to keep heat off of my hair for at least a week) and HOPE for the best in the morning.

Tomorrow is Friday so that’s good, I only have one more day to go before I won’t have to actually be seen in public unless I want to.  I also think that Saturday night into Sunday will have to be my hair routine… either that or Sunday AM wash… air dry or assist with dryer until sorta damp, then moisturize and twist Sunday night to be ready for Monday morning.  Washing on Friday night means that midway through the week I might have to wash again and I want to avoid that.

So I’m doing ookay this week.. I don’t want to go back to the synthetic twists so I’m gonna try to work with what I’ve got.  The only thing I’m not happy with is the color of my hair.  It’s black but not really black… because I want huge shine factor, and I need a deep conditioning anyway, I ordered me some henna and indigo and will work that out next weekend.  I’m pretty excited.  Woo hoo!!! More on that in another post…