Thursday, July 17, 2014

Controlling Oily Skin

Most of us suffer from dry skin while others suffer from oily skin. During my teen years, my skin was horribly oily right along the T-zone. (The forehead and straight down the nose). You're probably thinking how the heck can I have dry scalp and oily skin? Well, I didn't have scalp problems back then. Today my skin is only slightly oily, (thank God!)

In the 80's, my mom took me to a dermatologist who recommended a prescription drug for me. I don't remember what the name of the medicine was, it started with an "R" as for as I can remember. And then there was Accutane. Neutrogena worked for a while and then there was Clearskin from Avon. In spite of the medicines used I still had horrible black spots on my face.

Today my skin is healthy and glowing and I rarely break out from pimples even though I use carrier and essential oils in my hair regimen. I take Hair Skin and Nails supplement along with a multivitamin. I also use oils in my hair for hot oil treatment and I use light combination of Castor and Jojoba oils in my scalp sparingly. Hey, it's what keeps my scalp nourished and I usually seal with a butter. 

For those of you suffering from oily skin because you think oils may be the culprit, I recommend Aveeno Cleansing Pads. They work wonders on my fourteen-year-old daughter's skin and I just had to try them out when I'm not using Mary Kay. Also, be sure to change your pillow cases regularly, as the oils in your hair may seep through your cap and into the case, this contributes to break outs. 
Another wonderful product is Equate, which to me is an alternative to Proactive.  I've had great experiences with both products and I'm sure you will too. You just have to find what works for you. Products can be purchased at Walgreens, CVS, online stores, Walgreens, Target, and other places where cosmetics and hair care products are sold. 

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Black Dymond Naturals

I've been without wigs and extensions since September of last year. I've finally managed to embrace my natural hair texture and since then have rocked styles such as braid outs, twist outs, braid and curls, twist & curls, curly fros, frohawks, etc.

During my natural hair care journey I've even experimented with some Shea butter last December. Needless to say my hair didn't care for the Shea butter for some reason. Fast forward to January 2014 and I replaced Shea butter with mango butter for my leave in conditioner. I've even tried a few DIY mixes from the internet but after a while my hair didn't fell like it did at first. Isn't it funny when you first use a product how you love the way your hair reacts, bur after a few weeks to a month, your hair becomes dry to a certain extent or doesn't hold that style you spent time creating the previous night? I've grown so tired of experimenting with different products. Some I've recently purchased and have yet to use them. Perhaps I will in the future, who knows. But for now they sit beneath my bathroom sink.

I've finally tweaked a concoction I created back in March by mixing a few essential and carrier oils that has done the trick for my hair. I stopped mixing my own stuff because I ran out of ingredients and didn't make another trip to the vitamin Shoppe. And yes, since I'm an ex-product junkie I fell back on some old products beneath my sink. There have been some family members and some folks I've met on the internet who wanted to try my mixes because I was quite impressed with the way it made my hair feel, and the moisture does last me for days. I've even managed to step away from stylers on a daily basis when the one I made ran out. So far this week I've only used styler once and my hair is still nice and curly. 

I'll be making another batch next week for some folks I know in the Maryland area and I've decided to name my business Black Dymond Naturals. My website is currently under construction and so is my shop. I only make the products when I have several orders to place.  In addition to my leave in, I also make a moisturizing curl definer and a styling gel. Working with flax seeds has been challenging, but the end results are lovely. Only thing is, I need to make small batches when creating the definer for myself.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Clarifying Natural Hair with Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV)  is a wonderful way to cleanse and clarify natural hair. Since the acidity of ACV is similar to natural hair, it’s an effective germ killer, conditioner, and cleansing agent.
Apple Cider Vinegar benefits:
Treats hair loss naturally
Head lice remedy
Relief from itchy scalp and dandruff
One good thing to remember is that hair is on the pH range of 4.5 to 5.5, almost similar to (ACV) which is pH 2.9.
Now, take into consideration that most of our hair care products we utilize are alkaline. These can be soap-based shampoos containing sulfates, hair dyes, bleaches, perms, and relaxers.
Rinsing with ACV every four to six weeks helps to balance the pH level in our hair while removing buildup from the styling products and cheap shampoos we may be using. Another great thing about using ACV is it closes the cuticles, provides shinier, smoother hair that is easy to maintain. It will also make your curls pop!
After shampooing hair you have the option to mix 1/3 cup of ACV into 1 liter of water. Usually I’ll take a large plastic cup and use 1 part apple cider and 1 part water and it’s worked like a charm.
Applying apple cider vinegar after shampooing or let it set on your hair when deep conditioning. I usually use this method, but you have to find what works for your hair. After 10 minutes, rinse hair completely. I do not recommend using ACV daily or even weekly. Remember, it is acidic and may not be for everyone. Pay attention to your strands and how they react afterwards.