Jul 4, 2012

MELISSA'S HAIR: My trial and error with braids

100% Kanekalon synthetic hair, available at most beauty supply stores.
So, after I cut that inch off my hair, my hair and I weren't getting along. Truthfully, I was suffering a bit of shock. My hair looked good and even, but the length wasn't my cup of tea. Then . . . the heat came and it came with the thunder. I'm prone to sweating in my scalp, so as the they would end my 4b curly curls were super shrunken. Once again, that look, not my cup of tea.

 I started relying on blow-drying it to stretch it. The blow-drying was  making my hair too dry and Nashville's dry heat was not helping me keep in the moisture. If I keprt going at this rate, I'd have to cut another inch off by the end of summer - NO BUENO! It was time for me to give my hair a rest. So, you know my solution, BOX BRAIDS!


I started the process by washing, conditioning, and deep conditionion my hair. After that I used the blow-dryer to stretch it as straight as possible. This time around I was focused on making sure my braids were small, neat, and tight. My technique is much better, but I still had to focus on making sure I grabbed my hair and devoted time to the process.


I bought 13 packs of 100% Kanekalon hair - often called 'silky jumbo braid' or something like that. In Nashville, the hair usually costs about 1.99 per pack. Much cheaper than 100% Human Braiding Hair and much more durable for this type of hair style. I only ended up using 10 bags of hair, but it's always better to have more than to run out in the middle of the job.

Last time I installed box braids, it took me about 24 hours. The braids were bigger and I was just starting out. This time it took me three days! Why? Because I wanted to make sure I was neat and I knew I wanted to keep these braids in for more than 8 weeks. I also started the process different. 

When you get your hair braided at a shop, the braider usually starts in the back and works her way to the top. However, I started at the top and worked my way to the back. Why? After 12 hours of braiding, my arms are usually SUPER TIRED. I get lazy at the top and end up having braids that look furry. Starting at the top was my best bet. I like the outcome.





So, I ended going to work with some of my braids not completed. I disguised the undone parts by putting my hair in a ponytail. When I returned home Monday afternoon, I finished the job. I dipped the braids in hot boiling water to seal the ends and finish the look:


I love the look of long braids. This is my favorite protective style. It helps me retain length and protect my hair.

CLICK HERE to see what products I use to protect my edges, help my braids smell good, and my fave leave-in conditioner.
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