Apr 22, 2013

Ashiya's Hair Diary : What Has Been Joined Together (Update)

In October of last year, I decided to combine some of my locs to make them stronger as my hair continued to gain length.  As I shared here, my locs were smaller than they should have been when I started them and combing them at the root was a good way to help them grow in to support the weight of my hair better.  I was initially concerned with combining the loc from root to tip, but that has become secondary to me now.  As long as they grow in healthy, an occasional trim will take care of locs that have trouble joining down to the tip.

Me an my falling spring curls at a demonstration I did at Hattie Cotton STEM Elementary in East Nashville.
One of the biggest concerns with longer locs is having them buckle under the pressure of length and break off.  After a few different experiences since the beginning of the year and a trip down the YouTube hole, I was reminded of the only real defense against hair breakage:  moisture balance.

In January, I had the chance to hear Keneesha Martin of The Mahogany Suite speak and she inspired me to take a look at my shampoo routine.  I chose a shampoo and conditioner by Silk Elements and although I liked it initially, time has revealed something more was still missing. 

I stumbled upon Damian Walters on YouTube one night and he helped me understand - through some laughs - what was missing from my shampoo regimen.  I didn't follow all of Keneesha's advice.  I had found shampoos to cleanse properly, but I had nothing to restore the moisture while washing my hair. I used the Silk Elements to replace the moisturizing shampoo that I had when I should have just added it to my routine.  Looking back, it was something I did when I was younger, but I think my former product addiction caused me to loose sight of that.

While my goal is to settle on products just a few natural ingredients, my bigger goal now is to create a routine that supports my locs as they grow into full maturity.  In several of Damian's videos, he recommended the Stimulations Super Moisturizing Conditioner by Design Essentials.  The Design Essentials product line was also on the list recommended by Keneesha and after both Melissa and Toya gave them a try recently, I thought why not see what they do for locs?

Because product lines usually work best together, I also plan to try the Organic Deep Cleansing Shampoo from Design Essentials for the first lather and follow up with their Moisture Retention Conditioning Shampoo

For now, I've added the Creme of Nature's Argon Oil Moisture and Shine Shampoo as a second lather after the Silk Elements Olive Shampoo, another shampoo Damian suggested. I have found my hair's initial response to fresh wash lasts longer, so I'm excited to see what products better suited for my hair will bring. 

I'm a long way from where I hope to be, but I do expect to find shampoo and conditioner that work better for my hair.  I've gotten mixed reviews on the Design Essentials shampoo, but the Stimulations Super Moisturizing Conditioner seems to be a winner for locs.  If they don't work as well for me, I'm excited for a wiser, more focused product search to continue. 

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