Friday, November 22, 2013

Straightening My Own Hair

Recently I've been dealing with feelings surrounding not knowing what I really want to do with my hair. Since moving away from NC, I haven't found a cosmetologist I can trust with my natural hair; but to be completely honest, I haven't really been looking. I'm accustomed to getting my hair done every two weeks. The most work I've had to do was think of a nice style I wanted, tell my cosmetologist, she'd hook it up for me, and I would keep it up in between salon visits. I truly miss that.

I've discussed a few options I've been considering over the past few hair posts. I've settled on wearing my hair straight for the majority of the winter. I still want to learn how to do my hair on my own...both curly and straight. If I can conquer this skill of straightening, I think it would boost my confidence for being able to learn other skills.

Having made this decision prior to my hair appointment, I had to get my cosmetologist to school me on what products I would need and the techniques to use to keep my hair safe while straight. The products I used were:

Natural hair productsAquage Strengthening Shampoo 
and Conditioner
It's A 10 Miracle Leave-In Conditioner Plus Keratin
Influence Natural Oil
Silk Elements Heat Protectant Spray
Sedu Revolution Styling Iron
KMS Hair Spray
Here are the steps we (since my boyfriend helped me with this process) took to get my hair straight:

My natural hair before straightening
1. Shampoo the hair.
2. Detangle while conditioning, allowing the conditioner to sit for at least 3 minutes.
3. Wash out the conditioner.
4. T-shirt dry hair.
5. Spray 'It's A 10' lightly misting the hair and comb it through.
6. Put a dime-sized amount of Influance Natural Oil all over hair.
7. Blow dry hair.
8. Part hair into small sections for flat-ironing.
9. Spray Silk Elements in a light mist over the section before flat-ironing.
10. And flat iron, with the iron on the highest temperature (450 degrees).

Those are the steps as they were given to me by my stylist, but for the strangest reason we tried to do this during the middle of the week. So while I was washing my hair I was also cooking dinner and showering. I've learned that if I'm going to straighten my hair, it needs to have all my attention...during the weekend!

Here's the finished product:

Natural hair after being straightened

I must say that my boyfriend did a wonderful job with my hair!! I give him a great big round of applause for his effort! Hair isn't new to him; he has barber skills and has cut hair on the side on and off since undergrad. He also cuts his own hair each week and has even arched my eyebrows like a professional! I didn't want to flat iron my hair on my own because I can't see all of my hair. I wanted him to do it because I know he's good with hair and I know he would have been able to tell if something was wrong while we were going through this process.

What do I think of the results?
Again, this was a learning process for both of us because this was our first time. I think I should have dried my hair immediately after washing it, instead of going to check on dinner which allowed it to air dry a little. Because it air dried, it didn't stretch as well as it could have. Since it didn't stretch, the end result didn't lay down as much as it should have. I didn't have the flowy-ness I'm used to, which was disappointing, but I also know it was our first time. It just made the hair a little harder to style. I was also very rough while blow drying. As my hair continues to shed, I see that I have a lot of split ends which has never been an issue before. I'm thinking I should have been more careful but I was trying to simulate what my cosmetologist does when she straightens my hair. I was obviously unsuccessful.

I straightened my hair about two weeks ago and it's still straight now. It's about time to redo it, especially with Thanksgiving nearing, but I'm a little leery about it. I know the best way to get better at it is with repetition, but I may just wash it out and wear it curly (with hopes that we haven't damaged my curl pattern)!

So...will I wear it curly or straight?? Stay tuned.

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  1. It turned out nice, looks like a lot of work. I just did mine and it took me over an hour and my arms hurt. My hair is soo long (tailbone) and I think it is way too much work. I will have some hair care tips and tips for growing out hair soon. Your hair looks great!

  2. Looks great! I recently got mine straightened (after saying last Jan. that it would be years before I did it again, lol). But it turned out much better this time. Plus, I learned how to use flexi rods so that has helped me maintain it. I don't really plan on wearing it down much, but I needed my ends clipped before I twist it in preparation for my upcoming due date of our first child :-).



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