Tips for Chemically Relaxed Hair Beauty

AaaH ..best hair relaxer ever!

Many women prefer the convenience of chemically relaxed hair.   What can we do when those chemicals cause other types of scalp problems? How do we avoid suffering from hair loss caused by chemicals in the future?  Here’s good piece of advice that I found searching the Internet.

It’s best to consult with a professional to determine what your particular needs are when it comes to relaxers. And no, you cannot apply a lye relaxer over hair that’s been processed with a no-lye relaxer (and vice versa)! However, you can apply a different relaxer to new growth if your current straightener isn’t giving you the results you want. It’s not recommended to constantly switch relaxer types or brands. Once you find the relaxer that works for you, it’s best to stick with it until or unless it stops. via Lye and No-Lye Hair Relaxers.

It turns out that many hair care blogs have articles commenting on just this topic.  I searched for some of the key points  highlighted, which may help to reduce any problems that you are  having due to chemically induced dry scalp with your relaxed hair.  Read on and don’t forget to click the link at the end for a more detailed discussion about these topics.

After your hair has been chemically straightened, wait 48 hours before you wash your hair. The chemicals need time to set.

Once a week for the first month, apply a deep conditioning mask and cover your head with a shower cap to lock in heat.

When you sleep, use a satin pillow case, this will help protect your hair by preventing it from tangling.

 When it comes to styling your hair, avoid using high heat blow dryers or curling irons. If you must use them then reduce the heat.

Try to avoid using hair spray or gel as they can dry out your hair.

If you want to colour chemically straightened hair, then wait 14 days before you do.  via How to Take Care of Chemically Straightened Hair.

 Daily application of a moisturizing cream also helps. Avoid products that contain petroleum and silicones as these are often too heavy for relaxed hair. Instead, look for products that use oils like aloe vera, jojoba, olive oil and other natural oils. These are much lighter than the petroleums and silicones, and they moisturize your hair without weighing it down. via How to Take Care of Relaxed Hair | eHow.com.

HairBlues Recommendation: Check out the Just Natural website to find products for relaxed hair that will help you to moisturize your hair and scalp with organic natural products.  Click the link below.

http://www.justnaturalskincare.com/hair-black/relaxed/-ALL-relaxed-black-african-american-hair-products.html

I hope this is helpful 🙂

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Can Black (Kinky) Hair Be Beautiful?

Sometimes at HairBlues I like to take a “time-out” to focus on a particular topic: today’s pause is to consider (again) “what is considered Beauty”?  In other posts I have discussed “Bald” as a beauty statement, and “how to deal with making your hair loss beautiful”.  We’ve focused on weaves and wigs as beauty statements. In this post the focus is  on African-American (Kinky Hair), and where we are as women who wear this hairstyle as a fashion and beauty statement.

Everywhere I go these days I see beautiful  natural (kinky) hairstyles worn by both  young and mature black women.  As a baby boomer, I am only a little jealous that many of those styles had not been thought of when I first strutted my Afro hairstyle :).  But, after more than 40 years since black women freed themselves from the stigma of having “bad” hair, and James Brown (the Godfather of soul) made it clear that being Black was something to be proud of (which included natural, unprocessed or straightened hair worn by black women) this discussion is still going on – that is to say – black hair not traditionally combed is not necessarily considered a thing of beauty on black women.

What a wonderful thing that black women have progressed even further to feeling comfortable with “wash & wearing” their hair without combing it out.  I remember when I first did that over 30 years ago how mortified my Mom (rest her soul) was that I was going outside without “picking” my hair out.

Nowadays it warms my heart every time I see a young woman who has the freedom and courage to wear her “natural” hair.  But, is there a price she is going to pay for doing that? Apparently, the answer is YES – for some black women. However, an article by Demetria L. Lucas, “Why Does My Natural Hair Get No Love”, published on The Root (http://www.theroot.com),  suggests that oftentimes our conclusions about “not getting any love for natural hair” may need self-reflection, as well as self-reliance.

At Hairblues we agree:  Beauty after all is not only in the eye of the beholder, but in the heart and mind of the “Beheld”.

See you at the next post!

Chemotherapy Hair: Caring for & Repairing

This post is in response to an inquiry about how to care for “natural (kinky)  hair” after chemotherapy treatment… After searching for “chemo hair remedies’ on the Internet, there did not seem to be a website, which had ‘distinguished‘ natural (kinky) hair from any other types of hair after chemotherapy.  As I thought about Chemotherapy, and why people must go through this formidable health challenge, I concluded that Cancer does not  ‘distinguish‘ whose body it chooses to visit.  It is an unexpected, intense, and distressing experience that has a sudden and powerful effect on somebody’s emotions and physical well-being. Having said that,  I want to share with you “natural” remedies for your new growth.  I urge those of you out there who have had chemotherapy to share your ideas by making comments at the end of this post.

Getting your hair ready for Chemotherapy is probably one of the most difficult challenges a person can be confronted with.  I have heard that spiritual guidance and sheer will are some of the options those who have to deal with this test choose to help them.  Of course,  family and friends are some of the other support systems one relies on. But how do you get your hair ready for this ordeal?  The Mayo Clinic website had suggestings for pre/after-treatments, which are listed below. Don’t forget to click the link provided at the end for more details.

Mayo Clinic is a not-for-profit medical practice and medical research group based in Rochester, Minnesota, specializing in treating difficult cases (tertiary care). Patients are referred to Mayo Clinic from across the U.S. and the world, and it is known for innovative and effective treatments.via Mayo Clinic – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Before (Chemotherapy) treatment
Be gentle to your hair. Get in the habit of being kind to your hair. Don’t bleach, color or perm your hair — this can weaken it. Air-dry your hair as much as possible and avoid heating devices such as curling irons and hot rollers. Strengthening your hair now might make it more likely to stay in your head a little longer during treatment.

During treatment
Baby your remaining hair. Continue your gentle hair strategies throughout your chemotherapy treatment. Use a soft brush. Wash your hair only as often as necessary. Consider using a gentle shampoo.

After treatment
Continue gentle hair care. Your new hair growth will be especially fragile and vulnerable to the damage caused by styling products and heating devices. Hold off on coloring or bleaching your new hair until it grows stronger. Processing could damage your new hair and irritate your sensitive scalp.
Be patient. It’s likely that your hair will come back slowly and that it might not look normal right away. But growth takes time, and it also takes time to repair the damage caused by your cancer treatment.  via Chemotherapy and hair loss: What to expect during treatment

Maintaining a routine for your hair after chemotherapy:

Step 1Wash hair gently. The AHLC advises restricting shampooing to twice a week. Use a shampoo formulated for damaged or dry hair, followed up with a conditioner formulated for thin or fine hair. Massage your scalp gently while you’re in the shower to loosen up dead skin cells.

Step 2 – Avoid towel drying your hair. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, vigorous rubbing can damage healthy hair, as the hair is more vulnerable when it’s wet. Simply wrap a towel around your hair and let it absorb the water.

Step 3 – Let your hair air dry. The heat from a blow dryer can damage new hair growth, says the AHLC–and it can damage healthy hair as well. The AAD advises limiting use of blow dyers and other heated styling tools in general. If you eventually start to use a blow dryer again, wait until your hair is barely damp to use it. via How To Grow Hair Back After Chemotherapy | LIVESTRONG.COM.

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Gentle Products – The two websites listed below have natural products that might be gentle for your scalp and hair type after chemotherapy. Just click the link provided.

http://www.justnaturalskincare.com/hair-black/-ALL-black-hair.html

http://www.wenhaircare.com/whyitsunique.php

Glossary:
AHLC – American Hair Loss Council
AAD – American Academy of Dermatology

I hope this is helpful 🙂

What’s wrong with tight braids?

For generations African-American girls have had their hair braided because it is a traditional belief that it would help their hair to grow.

Nowadays, there is talk about braids “causing” hair loss. At HairBlues we think it is important enough to investigate what some of the causes of hair loss and braids may be.  Below are tips we found online that may help to ease this problem, which appears to happen more often these days.  Don’t forget to click on the link provided at the end of the highlighted tips to get  detailed information.

Beauty should not hurt! If your head hurts, it’s because your hair is braided too tightly, or you have too much extension hair added. In either situation, this doesn’t bode well for the future of your hairline. Some braiders may tell you to take an aspirin and the pain should be gone by morning, but any pain is an indicator that something is wrong.

Use warm water to loosen them: Take a shower and let the water cascade over your hair. You may need to gently rub your scalp to loosen the braids a little. This is not the time to worry about how much money you just spent and how much time it took to style these braids, so don’t think about that! Concern yourself with loosening up this tight style and saving your hairline.

Remove them: Yes, remove any braids that are causing little bumps to pop up on your scalp. This is not normal and can lead to hair loss down the road, especially if you make a habit of wearing tight braid styles.

Do yourself a favor and see how your head feels when you’re still in the stylist’s chair. Does it hurt while she’s braiding? That’s the time to ask her to ease up on your hair.

 Do not return to tight braiders: Some braiders are notoriously hard on hair. Once should be enough to tell you that this is someone who doesn’t care about the health of your scalp. via What Can I Do about Tight Braids.

FYI –Traction Alopecia:By Del Sandeen

Definition: A condition where constant pulling and tension on an area of the hair results in thinning, breakage and/or hair loss. This is commonly seen in women and children who braid the hair too tightly particularly at the hairline or wear the same style over extended periods of time, not allowing the scalp and hair follicles to “rest.”via Traction Alopecia.

 I hope this is helpful !

Tips for blow drying your hair

Ladies – are you blow drying your hair too much? Do you know how much is “too much”? Well neither do we.  However,  have you thought about air drying your hair occasionally, or not washing your hair so often? Below are some tips and great suggestions we found online about what you can do to avoid hair loss by damaging your hair when using a blow dryer.  Don’t forget to click on the links provided to get further details.

As far as blow dryer heat goes don’t use the high heat setting except in the beginning when hair is still very wet, once hair starts to feel mostly dry it’s time to turn down the heat.

 If you start to smell hairs burning it’s time to use the cold shot if you have one to cool it. Once hair is damaged from burning or any other way it is permanent.

The only way to really get rid of damaged hair is to cut it off, which you will in time.

 If you curl your hair with hot rollers or curling irons you can go old school every now and then and use regular rollers and rags like they used to before all of these hairstyling tools were invented.

 One last way to help prevent blow dryer damage is to use hair protectants. There are many on the market these days designed specifically to apply to hair before blow drying for this purpose.
via http://www.infobarrel.com/Does_a_Blow_Dryer_Damage_Hair#ixzz1rEEMzJ00

Read more:  http://www.thehairstyler.com/features/articles/hairstyles/blow-drying-hair-tips-how-to-get-a-style-that-lasts

I hope this is helpful

Gabby: Golden Beauty!

BEAUTY– how it gets defined is always intriguing . I once read a story about a person who had no teeth. The person sharing the story reported she had never seen such a beautiful human being.  The beauty she said was in the happiness of his eyes  and smile.  It was in his demeanor. Everyone who was lucky enough to be in this person’s presence felt mesmerized by the beauty this person radiated.  No teeth. And beautiful nevertheless.

How many of you were fortunate enough to see  the young, and beautiful African-American woman Gabrielle (Gabby) Douglas perform in the Gymnastics competitions? How many of you saw her fly through the air with sheer strength, precision, and grace?  Courage in its highest form.  This young woman took her body to the level of winning a GOLD medal! She is the first African-American woman to win the All Around in the history of the Olympic games.

Well, if you were one of the many focusing on Gabby’s hairdo, I’m afraid you missed the show…and you missed history in the making.

At HairBlues we were astounded by the conversation that evolved during Gabby’s Olympic performances. We considered that those who were discussing Gabby ‘s hairdo had possibly missed the show. That is the only way we could explain this mind-boggling occurrence!

 True Beauty ♦ Excellence

 

The show Gabrielle Douglas gave the world was singular in its accomplishment.  That’s how she earned the Gold Medal for the United States. She is the best in the world, folks, in her Olympic category  the All-Around.

As the saying goes “let’s  not get it twisted”. How many feats can you do (or anyone you know) flying through the air – and keep your hairdo in place at the same time?

We at HairBlues Congratulate Gabrielle Douglas –  an Olympic Golden Beauty. Let’s focus on the importance of that accomplishment! Hairdos come, go, and change.

Olympic History is forever! Let’s be proud that an African-American woman has made history as an American unforgettable, and girls around the world have a beautiful new image to emulate!

Let’s keep a Beautiful Focus !

Disguising Your True Beauty

How many disguises have you created since you learned that you would be counted among the innumerable women undergoing hair loss? HairBlues has written about it before, and although hair loss by itself is not a life threatening process, it does indeed bring high concern, and anxiety to many.  The stories at the Women’s Hair Loss Project blog brings us further understanding of what it can be like to find yourself in this predicament. At the same time, there are also uplifting stories from women who have managed to get married, have productive lives, and moved on with this challenge in hand.  We hope you will too.

At HairBlues we feel compassion for those many women who have not found their comfort level yet.  We can only hope they discover that with, or without, their disguises in reality their true beauty is within them.  Surely, others really looking for true beauty will find it in them too.

The American Hair Loss Association has given some guidelines for attacking hair loss proactively.  Make sure to visit the blog when the opportunity is right for you.

Oral Contraceptives are a common cause of hair loss for many women today. Women who use oral contraceptives need to be sure they are taking a low androgen index pill. Read More…via American Hair Loss Association – Womens Hair Loss.

 Women are in a “Catch-22” position when it comes to drug treatments for androgenetic alopecia. While many drugs may work to some degree for some women, doctors are reluctant to prescribe them, and drug companies aren’t exactly falling over themselves to test existing or new drugs specifically for their ability to prevent and treat female pattern baldness. via American Hair Loss Association – Women’s Hair Loss / Treatment.

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I hope this is helpful !

Working Your Look with Wigs!

Some women are so creative when it comes to re-inventing their look.  It’s magical when they put on a wig and enter a room, exuding confidence.  No fear of being different; no fear of being in the room. Rather they work the room!  Poise! Beauty from within!   Be one of these women too with a lace type wig!  Below are descriptions of the various kinds of lace wigs and what some people think about them.

What Are Lace Wigs?

  • A Lace front wig is a wig that looks like the hair is growing out of your head.
  •  A full lace wig is one that can be parted anywhere on the head and the hair looks like it’s growing out of your scalp.
  • A lace wig is a mesh base cap wig , the mesh will have the same skin tone as your skin and when applied against your skin it will disappear. It is undetectable and the only true system where you can have an exposed hair line.
  •  A full lace wig cannot be parted anywhere unless (it) is freestyle. There is other materials such as mono o poly that also looks as if the hair is growing out of your head. via What is a lace front wig.

♣  For more information on why women like lace wigs  and where to find them click the link:  Nowadays, more and more women like to wear cheap lace front wigs to make them different. …Lace front wigs can help…. via The Reasons Why Women Like Lace Front Wigs? | Latest Lace Wigs Trends and News at Wighomes.com.

♣ And don’t forget to check out the Women’s Hair Loss Project to see what they have to say about wigs: I think what  is pretty fantastic about Milano wigs is their partline, sharp and distinct, they look amazingly real.via Search: lace front wigs | Women’s Hair Loss Project.

I hope this is helpful !

Challenging Ageism & Ego: A Perspective

Beauty.

When I find myself obsessing about hair loss, I remember that as we age, we are challenged in the process, and by the process itself.  Losing one’s hair is one of several challenges.  But, let’s concede that hair loss, on its own, is not a life threatening challenge.  Cancer.  Heart Disease, Diabetes.  The need for Bone Marrow. Mastectomy.  These are just a few challenges that can intrude into one’s life.  I would bet that you never thought of hair loss in a positive way!

Well, today think again. Step up to the challenge to move forward by thinking in a  positive way.  See  yourself differently.  Reinvent.  Be grateful that all you have to do is make a beauty change. Or, think of yourself as  a beauty change.

Let’s get busy being grateful!

  🙂 

ReCreating Your Look . . .

Occasionally you may want to ‘recreate your look.  Weaves give you a way to change your ‘outward personality‘, and maybe, the attitude that goes with it! 🙂 In addition, weaves  give you an opportunity to take care of your ‘natural hair’ when it needs some time to repair or refresh from the experiments  you put it through.  🙂

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  HairBlues tries to find the best solutions and suggestions at the various websites, which cover the topics featured on this page.   Check out the tips found for protecting your hair underneath your weave. There were any number of  sites that provided many and fascinating suggestions on what to do during this beauty transition period.  Some of the suggestions I liked are listed below.  As always, for the detailed information provided by each site, click on the link at the end of each topic.

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Del Sandeen  Black Hair Guide had four (4) main suggestions:

(1) Shampoo and Condition, (2) Apply Oils to Your Scalp, (3) Don’t Neglect the Weave (4) Remove it After Six to Eight Weeks.

Read the details why at this link – Take Care of Your Hair Under the Weave.

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Taking Care of Your Hair: Weave Edition

Ladies, we all view our hair as precious. But if you’ve noticed that your hair is damaged, you have two options. 1. To cut it or 2. To save it. A lot of ladies are able to save the damaged hair through weaves or wigs, but remember if you choose this option you MUST take care of your hair underneath it all. via Hair De La Crème: Taking Care of Your Hair: Weave Edition.

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I hope this is helpful 🙂

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