Sun-kissed In Fall

It may be Fall, but I am LOVING these sun-kissed lips!

Lips: AJ Crimson’s  Keep It Cute with COINZ on top!

 

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More Locs!

General Loc Maintenance

Wearing locs is great, and one of the best things about wearing them is low maintenance! When I say low maintenance, I mean almost no maintenance. I get my roots interlocked (retightened) every six weeks, and try to wash my hair every ten to fifteen days. I may miss a wash day here and there, but I ensure to have my retightening done on a regular basis. Another low maintenance perk is product usage.  Locs can be maintained with shampoo, water and oil  90% of the time.

Mature, Color Treated Loc Maintenance

I suffered a devastating experience with breakage (due to low iron) in 2015 when I colored my hair just before discovering I was pregnant with my second child. I haven’t given up on color, but I have started to include products to help strengthen and maintain moisture in my locs.

So far, all of the products that I’ve used have been for loose natural hair. Both of my daughters have loose natural hair, so their haircare products are easily acessible. And while locs are a form of natural hair, they aren’t loose strands of hair, and mine are colored treated, so there are some products that can work for me and others that simply won’t.

Even though I’ve branched out and added some additional products to my routine, my scalp still felt dry and itchy, and my locs still looked dry and frizzy.

More Life with More Locs

I finally got my hand on a brand that I’ve had my eye on for a while, MORE LOCS! The first things that I immediately noticed about my hair was the SHINE! After using the product for about a week -OMG! Like, for real!

More Loc debuted earlier this year (2017), the line features over ten products made to give your locs More moisture, More shine, More growth! Because one of my biggest scalp and hair issues is dryness, I selected two items to help me with that.

scalp nourish

PC: @ishagainesphoto

The Scalp Nourish oil feels like heaven on my scalp! I like that it’s not as thick and heavy as some other oils that I’ve used in the past. It’s easy to distribute, it absorbs into my scalp and locs, and it smells like tropical heaven!

white tea moisture mist

PC: @ishagainesphoto

I use the White Tea Moisture Mist daily. It adds moisture to my locs that I can see, and feel when I touch my hair. My locs feel less brittle and the added moisture brought more life into the color of my locs.

The products didn’t just sit on top of my hair nor did it absorb into non-existence like I’d never used it. My scalp and locs feel nourished and moisturized. Not only does my hair and scalp look better, the added moisture has also helped eliminate some of the frizziness I was experiencing with my locs.

More Locs offers products ranging from cleansers to oils and serums. Find out more about More Locs on Instagram at  @More_locs.  Next on my list of things to try from More Locs is the Herbal Cleanse (shampoo) and Loc Silk (conditioner). Have you experienced More Locs? Tell me your favorite product within the line and why you love it!

The Experience – Studio 21 Salon!

Eight months ago I attended a makeup class at what I like to call a “hidden gem” of a salon.   When I arrived at the location I was a little confused, because the name of the establishment and what I’d looked up online listed a hair salon. But when I got there and walked through the doors, a beauty baby grand piano greeted me in the foyer, and  a textured wooden wall served as the backdrop. It felt classy and rich. I walked through to a waiting area, the decor had changed. Black walls, crisp, clean white walls. Still rich, but the vibe was more street- around the way. A little past there was a transitional type space. The walls were still black, but there was also a rippled tin wall, and it took all of about 5 minutes before I realize that there was a mural painted on a wall in a street art fashion. My final destination was clearly a photography studio. One side of the room was white. The other side had a stage, and another wooden textured wall accented with elegant mirror art. “I’m here for a makeup class, but I need to find out more about this place!” 

Studio 21 Salon is a salon like no other- that I have experienced.

Located in Grand Prairie, TX, the 4,500 square-foot facility is equipped with a full service salon: 4 stylists, a loctician, braider, threader. The salon also houses a full service makeup studio, professional makeup artists, photography and videography studio, and media team.

The inspiration  and concept of Salon21 was curated by the owners, brother and sister, Jerrod Collins and Amiya Cleveland.

“Part of the inspiration was filling a gap that was there, and loving photo shoots! My brother, Jerrod is an amazing designer. He put everything together. It looked really nice and brought class to the table.” Amiya explains, “You can go from a ‘walk-in’ to having a photo shoot. But, you know that. You’re a model.”  

I don’t consider myself a model, but I have thoroughly enjoyed “the experience” of hair, makeup, and a photoshoot at the salon.  Since attending the makeup class in August of 2016,  Studio 21 has become my go-to! I frequent the salon as a walk-in for wax and threading services. I also love that Studio 21 offers a full list of natural hair care services, loc maintenance and styling. I’ve had my locs styled, and my daughter has  her natural hair treated and styled as well. 

The lights, studio chairs, and ambiance of the makeup studio make me feel like a star.

I just sit back and let the magic happen.  Amiya ‘The Face Beata’ slays and is always on point!  She’s done my makeup for events ranging from formals to concerts. Amiya did my makeup, and Studio 21 media did THIS photo shoot. She also did my makeup, and my hair was styled by Jerrod in the Rouge issue of Honey Be Natural magazine.

Graduation season is vastly approaching and prom season is now.  This can be a stressful time for students and parents scheduling hair appointments, makeup appointments, buying a dress, tux or outfits. You want to have photos to commemorate all of it. Studio 21 gives you the option to come get your hair and makeup done, then have a photo shoot all in one stop! “We have lots of options, so people can come in, get taken care of. You can even get dressed here and leave for prom from here! ” -Amiya Cleveland

 

Third time’s a charm

It’s been a month since the last time I had my locs colored professionally.  I explained in my The Wizard of Locs post about the process I went through, having my locs colored. The first application was too dark, the second too bright. I’m pleased to say that the third time was a charm, I’m finally happy with the color of my hair.

I am not a cosmetologist and even though I’ve worn my hair natural for the past five years, I prefer to have it professionally done. However, I wasn’t willing to spend anymore money having it professionally done in efforts to achieve the color I desired.

I was able to refer to two professionals who confirmed that my hair had been lifted enough and that I just need to find the semi or demi – permanent color I was looking for. (I do strongly recommend having a professional do the bleaching [lifting] process to reduce the chances of severely damaging the hair) The light purple color that had been applied was much brighter than I’d desired and by the second wash it had faded horribly.

I used Instagram, Pinterest and YouTube to seek out not only the color I wanted, but a brand that was well known for not fading as quickly. I ordered the color Violet, by Pravana. Pravana is a professional brand, but there is a version of their ChromaSilk VIVIDS line on the Internet. I purchased mine from Amazon.com.

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Eventhough I had spoken with two professionals and had done my research, I stilled struggled with the thought of applying the color myself. After watching a few more YouTube videos, reading a few more reviews/blogs and reading the instructions in the box, I decided to go for it. There was just one issue…the color needed to be applied to the back portion of my hair. I can’t see that area without a mirror behind and in front of me, and the #1 warning I saw on every review for this product was that it would easily stain anything I came in contact with and would be hard to get out.

I had to turn to my BFF/BFB for assistance. We were both beyond skeptical of my decision. My husband was puzzled and in shock that I would even consider allowing him near my hair for such a task. The color application didn’t require anything more than saturating the hair with the color, there was no mixing involved, and I was confident that he could handle that. I read the directions to him and got everything in place. He soon realized the task was all that detailed and was up for the challenge.

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Once he got started my nerves set in.

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That awkward moment when you realize YOUR HUSBAND IS COLORING YOUR HAIR!!

His enthusiasm was adorable. He was more concerned about the outcome than I would have imagined and quickly became delighted with his “skills”. We wanted to be sure that all the locs were saturated with the color and used a little over half the tube.

I followed the instructions and allowed the color to process at room temperature for 20 minutes, then washed it out. The reviews were right about staining. There was a lot of product in my hair, it took four washes to finally see semi-white suds and clear water while rinsing,and yes my tub is stained.

Despite having to scrub the tub, for what seemed like forever, I think he did a GREAT job!

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I’m pleased with the outcome so far and I’ll check back after three washes.

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The Wizard of Locs

Fall is here,  it’s my most favorite season. One of the first things I do to my hair when fall arrives is darken it.  I usually highlight or go with all over color in the summer. Changing my hair color in the fall is an is an inexpensive way to change my look for the season.

I always go with reds, bright tones for the summer and deeper tones for winter.

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Red/Auburn and Dark Brown

It occurred to me that I haven’t had black hair in quite some time -it’s been at least 4 years. This year I decided to switch things up a bit and tap into my true self a little. I’ve been wanting to go purple for quite some time now. Due to my corporate job, I’d always decided against it. Due to the damage that would result from bleaching, my stylist wasn’t down and told me to give it time and hopefully the crazy urge would pass

I put much thought into the decision. My stylist was right because time has made some purple tones more acceptable in the workplace. I called her up and let her know that THIS YEAR, WE G’ON DO IT. I want PURPLE LOCS FOR FALL!

I know my stylist, I knew that she would not be too keen on bleaching my hair, especially this (dry air) time of year (fall/winter). I scoured social media for the perfect shade of royal. After my color consultation and taking all factors into consideration, including the health of my locs, I settled on black with a splash of purple in the back.

(Some of these pictures are poor quality, I apologize about that.) The back portion of my hair was lifted to a light brown color.

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Then a semi-permanent color, Indigo was applied to that area and black to the rest.

The results…

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I was happy with the black, it was just what I’d hoped it would be. The color was ok, but I expected it to be more visible. However, it was a nice start and good transitional color for work. Two weeks later I had the back lifted again, this time to a gold color.

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Goldie Locs

Then the semi-permanent color Light Purple was applied.

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I’m happy that the color is visible. It’s a little more visible than I’d anticipated, but it’s cute. The black overlays so much of the purple that it doesn’t look as bright as it actually is. I get a lot of compliments and I’m really enjoying it so far.

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TypeCast…

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The number one question that I’m asked about my hair is, “What kind of dreads are those?” After wearing loose natural hair for about three years I had microlocks installed.

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“Oh, microlocks, I thought those were Sisterlocks. So, what’s the difference between microlocks and sister locks?”, is usually the next question.

Sisterlocks is a trademarked hairstyling method. In order for locs to be considered “Sisterlocks” the person installing them has to be certified through the Sisterlock program. Sisterlocks are beautiful, I love the versatility they offer as far as styling options. But, my personal opinion is, they cost too much, and some certified sisterlock consultants are just that -certified, not experienced.
My stylist is not certified to install “Sisterlocks”, but has over 15 years experience with natural hair and locs. I saved hundreds of dollars having her install my locs. To this day, I can honestly say that having my locs installed was the best hair decision I’ve made.

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I LOVE MY LOCS!