L.O.C. Method

I opened my CurlyNikki email today, and a woman has a post about proper bun styling and care.  One of the (many) steps said do the L.O.C. method.  I have seen the term around the natural hair blogosphere, but I guess have glazed past it. I click the hyperlink to find out more.

And now I’m kinda tiff.

L.O.C= liquid, oil, cream.  It is a step wise method for moisturizing hair.  The liquid is typically water, but may be aloe vera juice or a water-based leave-in conditioner.  The oil could olive, coconut, castor, etc.  Now from what I have been reading, some say the cream should not have water, others say it should.  I have been using my shea butter mixture.

So why am I tiff… because I have been doing the L.C.O.  Is there a big difference?  I’m not sure, but I plan on reversing my current method to see.  I’ll keep you posted on the outcome.

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Castor Oil Check In

Alright, so I think this is about week eight.  Here is a picture of my hair.  I had an earlier shot, but thought somehow I deleted ALL pics on my phone.  Turns out, my phone sometimes has all the pictures, others times none at all.  A mess.

To be honest, I am still using the castor oil at least thrice weekly.  But have slacked on posting responses to the questions Kinky Kurly Coily Me! posts.  I don’t know what happened.  I missed on check in and then all of a sudden it was 3 weeks later.  Oh well.

Thus far, I do not see a dramatic length difference (see pic from start of challenge here).  But the castor oil definitely softens my hair.  It feels great.  So for that benefit alone, I will continue to use regularly.


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Happy 10 Year Anniversary!

The traditional gifts to celebrate a 10-year anniversary are aluminum or tin. And for some reason, the modern gift is still tin. Tin doesn’t seem to be a worthy metal to celebrate a decade, but maybe I’ll get myself a new reusable aluminum water container – a can of wine sounds better.

I should clarify that I am not celebrating a 10-year wedding anniversary. I did recently get engaged so see me in 10-11 years for that.  I’m celebrating 10 years of being clean of the creamy crack.  That’s right, ten years ago was the last time I had the pleasure of picking scabs out of my matted hair.

My decision to stop relaxing my hair wasn’t deep or profound.  I guess it was more about time and money.  I was an undergrad student in Atlanta and the stylist had the same process with both natural and relaxed clients- wash, condition, blow dry and straighten.  I figured I could save a step, save some money and have the same fab result.  So, I asked to go natural, and she basically said “No.”

Ummmm, I’m sorry what?

I was disappointed and confused. But, I figured ‘she’s the professional,’ so I kept schmearing  on the crack.

Then one day I just got tired of it and figured, ‘I’ll go at it alone.’  So I had my one last appointment and that was that.  The following eight months were… uh… interesting.  For some reason I thought my Gold’n Hot would produce sufficient heat to make my new growth silky smooth.  I spent a number of those months with my hair snatched back in a ponytail.

Finally, I couldn’t take it anymore.  I made an appointment with my old stylist explaining that I was growing out my relaxer. I went for an appointment and we agreed to cut off the relaxed hair at the next appointment.   Yes, finally! I was so jazzed!  I was so ready… so much so that I showed up to my appointment early.  Not early like an hour early but a week early.  She squeezed me in and the result was an adorable cut.  In traditional terms, I cut off my relaxer but in modern terms it was my big chop (BC).

I didn’t have the curls or ringlets I imagined.  In fact as my hair grew, I discovered 2 distinct different patterns.  I will say that for almost 8 1/2 years after that, 95% of the time I wore my hair straight.  It looked nice but wasn’t growing like I thought it should and was damaged even though I was going to a professional.  Last year, while back in Atlanta at the Sweet Auburn Festival with my mom and a girlfriend, I stumbled upon a Miss Jessie booth. I talked to one of the promoters, who was giving out samples, about wanting to wear my hair natural but not knowing what to do.  She recommended calling a salon and asking for a finger style.

Of course that’s not what I did.  Instead, I became a YouTube and Google junkie.  I spent hours looking at styling videos, product review videos, and reading blogs.  I looked up ingredients –ones to avoid, ones I should use.  Then I had my “ah-ha moment”- “I have curly hair.”  Actually, I have coily hair but nonetheless,  it’s more than black or African-American or textured hair.  It was then I realized there is a care that needs to be taken when combing, styling, and maintaining moisture. A care that’s needed because of the structure of my strands and not because of my skin color (Did mention that the woman at the festival promoting Miss Jessie’s, was Caucasian?)

Seventeen months later, I continue to experiment with styling and products.  I am still trying to perfect a routine with products that really work for me.  But I am pleased that my hair is fuller, shinier and longer.   My hair is a work in progress but so am I.

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Castor Oil Challenge Fall 2012

I was browsing through a natural site I like, Kinky Curly Coily Me!, and noticed she has a castor oil challenge, so I signed up (why not).

Castor oil is a triglyceride, comprised of fatty acids, 90% of which is ricinoleic acid.  Ricinoleic acid is a humectant, which means that it helps to pull moisture out of the atmosphere and into the skin and hair.  It has analgesic, anti-fungal, and anti-bacterial properties.  Castor oil is used as a home remedy for a number of ailments from arthritis and constipation to acne and ringworm.  Also, ricinoleic acid protects the scalp and hair from infections that can cause hair loss.

photo credit: pmarkham via photo pin cc

Castor oil is pretty viscous, so previously I was only using it sparingly on my edges.  But with this challenge I will use on my scalp, to seal my ends and possibly in other treatments.  Below is my starting length. Here’s hoping for noticeable growth at the end of the challenge.

If you are interested in joining me and many others, stop by  This is not exclusive to naturals, but for all who are looking for healthy hair growth.


Let me know if you are in too!




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