The Right Way To Protective Styling

Protective styling can be a good thing right? You’re giving your hair a break, allowing it to rest, maybe help with the growing process. But then, your edges are popping, hair is coming out, scalp is dry and brittle and it seemed like you lost more hair than you ever did while it wasn’t being manipulated. Why?

There’s levels to this protective styling thing and I get several questions about it. I’ve been protective styling since I was 11 years old. I’ve made mistakes in the past, BELIEVE ME, but I’m here to give you some advice on the right way to protective styling. Listen up.

Protective styling, in a nutshell, is doing a style that completely gives your hair a rest. You can do braids, crochets, sew-ins, or wear wigs. I’ve done 3 out of 4 (I’ve never owned a wig) and with 20 years under my belt let me give you some advice.

  • Always start with clean hair and scalp.
  • Make sure your hair and scalp is moisturized.
  • Are your ends trimmed and healthy? If not, trim them!
  • Clean your hair utensils (brush, comb, hairclips, etc).

Tips for Braids

  • Soak the hair in Apple Cider Vinegar and Conditioner until all that gunk comes up, then wash hair. Your scalp will thank you.
  • DO NOT BRAID TOO TIGHT. Your scalp will already be tender, don’t add any more strain.
  • The natural hair to braiding hair ratio should almost be the same. For example, you don’t want to braid 4 inches of weave onto a 1/2 inch of your natural hair. Your hair will pop.
  • Kanekalon hair is lighter and better for your hair. Not that synthetic hair. Why use 12 packs of synthetic hair when you can use 3 packs of kanekalon hair?
  • If your scalp is tender after braiding, put a hot towel on your head. Let them steam do its thing.

Fun Fact: I did box braids on my hair and I used 11 packs of synthetic hair. The hair was so heavy, it popped my hair out. I had to cut my hair off into a pixie hair cut. It was the thinnest I’ve ever seen.

  • Ease up sewing in the hair too tight. You may not feel it when you’re doing it, but I promise you, you will feel it later.
  • The longest you should keep your hair in braids is 4-6 weeks. You can keep them in longer if you wash your hair with the braids in (and you can).
  • Oil your scalp at least twice a week. Refresh your hair with water and add some leave-in conditioner.

I’ve never worn wigs but your wash regimen should be the same as if you don’t wear wigs. Do your regimen every two weeks. Take your time when taking down your protective style. Remember,  you have lots of build up and hair that needs to shed from your scalp. You don’t want to be harsh during the detangling process. SECTION your hair! You’ll thank me later.

This may sound redundant and you’re probably thinking, who wouldn’t know this obvious information, but there is someone out there that doesn’t know the right way to protective style or to even care before, during, or after. I’ve followed these steps for years and although I’ve experience my own horror, I found a way to correct my mistakes and maintained healthy hair while its resting. Now you can too!


Benefits of Deep Conditioning + My Favorite Deep Conditioners

One thing I learned as a fellow gal sporting my natural curly hair to keep my curls hydrated and moisturized aside from clipped ends. The key to moisturized curls is to deep condition. Deep conditioning allows your hair to soak up nutrients that aids in maintaining moisture. I get several questions on how I keep my hair hydrated and if I have any techniques that work. This isn’t a step that you should be skipping in your hair care regimen either. So what are the benefits of this process, you ask?

  • Less Breakage
  • Soft, hydrated and healthy curls
  • Responds well to hair stylers
  • Less shedding (as long as your ends are healthy too)

I can promise you, that your favorite natural hair guru DOES NOT skip this step and their hair flourishes. Deep conditioning works best when heat is involved. You can use a sit under dryer with your hair under a plastic cap (poke a couple holes in it) or under a hair steamer. The heat will open your hair cuticles and allowing whatever deep conditioning  product you’re using to seep into your hair feeding it all the nutrients.

When shopping for deep conditioners, look for products that will help with adding moisture, control frizz, enhance curls and increase shine, as well as nourish and strengthen. Products such as shea butter, coconut oil, jojoba oil, olive oil, raw honey, aloe vera, and argan oil. There are plenty more, but these products are loved by my hair.

Here are a few of my all time favorite deep conditioners. You’ve seen my rave about the SheaMositure Jamaican Black Castor Oil line plenty times on my blog. I’ve never found an entire line of products that I can use and my hair responds well to all the products aside from this line and the Crème of Nature Argan Oil Line. These are staples and I they’re always in my collection.


What’s your favorite deep conditioners?

Annoying Remarks During My Natural Hair Journey

“What did you put on your hair to make it look like that?”

If you’ve been natural for a while, I’m sure you had plenty people coming to you barking questions and comments that supposedly mean well, but can really sound rude and disrespectful, right? I’ve had my fair share of comments and questions so I thought I’d share my experience with you and have a little laugh.

When I first decided to go natural, it wasn’t a huge thing like it is today. I made the transition in 2009 and big chop my hair 6 months after transitioning. It wasn’t easy to decide to stop using chemicals and embrace your natural texture back then. You would think the people that looked like you would be supportive. But they were the worse. I’ve heard comments from people that sound like this:

“So…….you’re not getting a relaxer anymore? You do know your hair will just get nappier.”

“Why would you do that?” ” You should comb your hair. I don’t like your hair like that. Its too peasy.”

I would get strange stares ranging from confusion and disgust and I would get the Macy Gray reference remark. Then I would get these passive aggressive remarks like…

“ohhhh your hair cute or whatever. It fits you.” “You don’t have that n***a-nappy hair.”  Or I would get “Well you mixed, so you got that good people hair.” Then my favorites…

“Oh I didn’t expect your hair to be this soft. It feels like a pillow. Wow, your hair smells good. I wasn’t expecting it to smell like flowers.”

“What’s wrong with your hair?”

“Comb your hair!”

How rude is that? The sad thing is, is all these comments came from family members or so called friends. Am I the only one that went through this?

When your hair is flourishing beautifully and now they wanna go natural.


I can’t stand this part with a passion. So I went through all phases of deciding to go natural. I went through the horrible TWA phase (when I didn’t know how to style short hair), then I went through the awkward length stage, and the dry phase when I couldn’t keep my hair moisturized. When I got better at taking care of my hair, it started to flourish! Then you would hear comments like these…

“Your hair look good. I’m glad you grew out of that awkward stage. But why does your hair stand up? Why won’t it lay down?”

What do you put on your hair to make it look like that? What kind of products do you use? Can you recommend anything for my hair? I’m trying to go natural.”

“I need help with my hair. Can you help me?”

“How much do you spend on products?”

When you color your hair….


You’re not natural anymore! Natural is when you don’t put anything in your hair! No chemicals.” Girl, shampoo is chemical, shut up.

“You do realize that your hair is going to fall out.”

“If you bleached your hair, you aren’t natural anymore.”

I think they missed the definition of “going natural.” It means to go back to your original hair texture. You know, the texture that grows out of your scalp? Okay.

Then I would get….


I wish I could go natural, but I’m scared. My hair won’t look like yours. My hair too peasy. “I don’t think I could cut all my hair off like you did. I’m not that bold.”

“Can I touch your hair? (you politely decline) “Why can’t I touch it? You have a problem with people touching your hair? Why you gotta act like that? Its just hair, it ain’t all that. You’re not the only one that got natural hair.”

“She think she all that because her hair long and curly.”

“Now that your hair looks longer are you going to put a relaxer in it? Will you blow it out to see how long it really is?” (You tell them you’re never getting a relaxer and you have no plans to straighten i anytime soon just to satisfy their curiosity) “So you’re not going to straighten it?”

I’m sure you’ve experienced more than I did or even worse than me, but the one thing that I loved about myself throughout this entire journey since 2009, is that I stayed true to myself and I didn’t let anyone affect me because I knew that one day, I would see them trying to do what I did years ago and you know what? THEY DID! How bout that?

Although I’m glad that we are finally embracing our natural hair, but if you were ever one of those (points above to the comments I wrote earlier), shame on you. God made us beautiful and our hair beautiful. Those comments gave me so much confidence and I was feeling myself even on bad hair days! Let’s talk about it! What’s your favorite/worse comment you endured whilst being natural?




Much Needed Trim

Spring is coming! Thought I’d share that real quick! For the last few weeks, when I’ve been washing and styling my hair, my hair was shedding and knotting so bad that I didn’t want to do anything to my hair. My braid outs didn’t last, and my flat twists would knot when I try to unravel them. It was unsettling. Then, it hit me. Girl, you need a TRIM! And I’m not talking, clip here and there, I mean go in your hair, section it if you need to and take those scissors and investigate! Then, you need a protein treatment too (but we’ll get into that in another post)! This past Monday, I woke up super early (we had an appointment to meet with our caterer!) and went straight to my bathroom and started prepping for a much needed trim.

I must say, I am in no way a professional, I just watched a plethora of videos on deva-cut styling! LOL! Well, I did. I really did. I learned, its best to dry cut in my natural state and to only snip the ends, or where it needs to be snipped.

I decided to section my hair and start in the back, pulling my curls to see how they fall and to snip the scraggly ends off, making sure I even it as much as possible. By the way, if you’re doing this by yourself, this is not a rat race. TAKE. YOUR. TIME. I was able to snip away the dead ends, probably only cutting a half an inch. Take a lot at how much I cut below.


I was amazed at how much I snipped and was able to keep my length, by just shaping my fro. I was able to maintain a cute shape and there was no shedding during my next styling! I promise to record my next trim!


Are you due for a trim?

Curly Up-Do with Jane Carters Solution!

This year I plan to experiment more with my hair to see how creative I can get with heat free hair styles. Our curly hair responds very well to perm rods (if achieved correctly), so I decided to do one with a new product that I picked up from Target.

Note to self: NEVER let your natural hair arsenal get low. Things will add up.

I wanted to try a few new moisturizers for my hair and I of course gravitated towards the Jane Carter’s Solution Curls to Go! Curl Cocktail Conditioning Cream. My overall opinion of the product: I can’t wait to get my hands on the rest of the line. For my hair, 90% of the time, if the deep conditioner or the moisturizer works well on my hair, then the rest of the line will (FINGERS CROSSED).

This product is very hydrating and I feel like it will do well in a twist out or a braid out. My curls felt soft and bouncy and I like how this product can be used on its own, meaning that you don’t have to cocktail it to make it effective. This product does not leave a white cast or flaky residue and has a creamy consistency, with a floral, fresh smell.

One thing I will mention, is if you’re looking for a longer lasting style, you will need a holding product.

Styling Process

Take a look at my first Youtube video of the year to see how I created his lovely curly updo using old hair! Please comment and subscribe! I would appreciate it!