Every morning when I wake up, after sleeping all night in a tight spandex wig cap and satin bonnet providing warmth over my oiled and wrapped hair, it just feels so silky and wonderful as it unravels out of the wrap. I absolutely love wrapping my straightened hair at night. Last night I put about a dime size dollop of coconut oil, but I will be trying 100% argan oil next week. The oil did wick out into the cap over night so I woke up to soft, well conditioned feeling hair that is not greasy.
My plan is to stretch my cowashes to at least 2 weeks or a bit more. The first week I will wrap it. After that I may try rolling it on jumbo rollers without wetting it to give it back more body. The last week I may switch over to curlformers without wetting the hair on flat ironed hair. Then I can do the top knot set without wetting the hair lastly as the flat iron gets oldest. So my plan is to allow myself a lot of style versatility off of one flat ironing and try to maintain it for at the very least 2 to 3 or 4 weeks. The main thing is the hair is not to be wet during this time. It is only to be oiled at night with moisturizing coconut oil or with moisturizing argan oil and then wrapped or rolled. I will NOT sleep on loose hair without wrapping it or setting it in some manner because that is when you wake up to breakage, tangles and a bird's nest. I also can not wet the hair for 2-3 weeks and I can NOT use the flat iron or blow dryer again for the next 2-4 weeks. The nightly sets are imperative to keep the hair fresh.By the end of this time I hope to have Keracare conditioner and a hooded bonnet dryer to deep condition under the dryer for at least 1/2 hour with my next cowash.
The best thing about this is I will actually get to enjoy my length and my hair now. I previously felt as if I was making sacrifices for length by wetting and oiling my hair every night. I generally hated how my hair looked. It was either too frizzy or too greasy to ever wear in public. So it stayed wet and sopping in oil hidden and tucked away for at least 6 months. I began to wonder what the point was to grow hair if it was always hidden. And when I did wear it out it was an unpleasant experience of it puffing up and not holding a style more than 20 minutes after leaving the house due to it being too moisturized to hold a set. Thus came the Brazilian Keratin Treatments and so far I could not be happier with them. I have read articles that state that keeping the hair in a perpetually moist state can actually be damaging because the water displaces and "unglues" the inner layers of the strand due to hygral fatigue. The dismantling of the "glue" holding the inner layers of the strand to the outer layers causes cuticles to fall off and the strand to disintegrate. One solution is applying coconut oil to the hair so that it fills the voids between the layer of the strand and prevents water from entering and tearing apart the inner layers due to continued expansion and contraction caused by water. http://swiftcraftymonkey.blogspot.com/2013/06/hygral-fatigue-and-coconut-oil-heavily.html
Now I am trying to find a happier middle growth path for growing healthy hair. My goal is to be able to retain and grow length without having to completely hide my hair away and generally hate the way my hair looks all the time. I don't want to have to have it perpetually wet, gheing, and sopping in oil to retain length now. That certainly is one sure way to grow and retain length, but I have tired of that path for now. This time, I want to find a healthy straightened, styled hair regimen. I would like to be able to jump up and go out at a moments notice and have my hair already in a style and ready to go even if it is in a bun at that moment. I will pretty much be copying SistaWithRealHair's regimen as well as integrating frequent curlformer sets. So basically I am allowing myself up to ONE FLAT IRONING ( on natural bkt treated hair) per month. And I have to maintain that one flat ironing all month with no additional heat all month or else switch to curlformer sets for subsequent weeks. I will use Tresseme Keratin Smooth 7 day treatment products with that ONE light flat ironing per month. I plan to look for Joico K Pak smoothing balm heat protectant. I think 100% argan oil, coconut oil pre cowash hot oil treatments, deep conditioners under the dryer , deep conditioning with coconut oil under the dryer, nightly wraps or sets and stretching the time between cowashes will be a big part of the next leg of my journey. I see a lot of commercial "argan oils" that are mainly mineral oil and heat protectants in serums. I will find 100% argan oil online instead. What I like about pure argan oil is that it does its job without weighing the hair down and a small amount is enough. I also have not used hooded dryers for conditioners so far, nor have I kept it on for 1/2 hour to an hour. These are all things I want to try from now on. I am aiming to actually enjoy my hair now for a change and to have my regimen to still be healthy. I hope to still grow and retain length even though I get to enjoy my hair and actually wear it out sometimes. Of course I will still bun a lot because bunning or tucking the hair away is great for length retention. But I also would like to be able to loosen the bun and wear it out if only for a few minutes a day when I'd like. More importantly, I would like the hair to already be set or wrapped before putting it in that bun. I would no longer like my hair to be constantly wet, gheing and sopping in oil requiring a complete wash, set and style before I can think of going anywhere wearing my hair out.
Wish me luck!
Here is a poll on Weddingbee.com asking women how often they flat iron their hair. I believe most of those who answered are Caucasian or similar with natural to color treated hair
If these natural haired Caucasian women are flat ironing their hair EVERYDAY to a few times per week, I pray I will be fine flat ironing mine once per month. According to the above, 58% of the women who responded flat iron their hair either everyday or a few times per week. And 82% of the women who responded flat iron their hair at least a few times per month if not everyday!
Given that many natural Caucasian women blow dry and flat iron their hair everyday with each morning shampoo, I can not understand why natural African American women feel apprehensive about infrequent flat ironings. I personally have no desire to keep very tight kinks or very tight curls so curl loosening is a non issue for me. In fact many would see that possibility as a potential selling point about flat ironing.
I do personally think that relaxed haired ladies should not flat iron at all though because relaxed hair is already subjected to one of the most caustic hair chemicals. I personally think relaxed ladies should do roller saran wraps or ponytail roller saran wraps or very infrequent flat ironing on low temperatures.
Edited by LadyAradia - 15 hours 41 minutes ago at 7:19pm