Different technique needed for 9 weeks post

So I am 9 weeks and 1 day post relaxer.  So I will make it to my minimum threshold of 10 weeks post my ends were starting to feel thin and my hair dry, plus my scalp was starting to itch and flake so was happy to wash and condition today.  Currently sitting under the dryer with Affirm 5 in 1 in my hair.  It’s been about 15 minutes.  If my wash and blow dry process can continue to make my roots manageable and my breakage minimised I might actually relax at 12 weeks.  The only thing that will stop me from doing that is if I get bored of bunning.  Also someone posted that the bun maker is not that good for the ends of your hair so I have to be careful with that and also make sure I rotate my bun location so as not to cause any breakage.  Or add silk or satin around it…

Ok so this wash was not so great – I didn’t wash the conditioner out and slept with it in my hair after I came out of the dryer, when I combed it after washing it the comb wasn’t quite gliding through the ends as it was last week – there seem to be quite a bit of tangling at the ends which means the blow dryer was more ripping through the hair.  Also didn’t help that Ndidi was waiting on me so I didn’t have time to think about reapplying the conditioner etc.  Anyway finished off with lots of hair on the floor and on the bed sheet and the middle section of my hair still wet – I think I will relax next week.  Can’t be asked  – I think I basically just gave myself a haircut from blow drying  But I think it’s partly due to all the regrowth – there is only so long you can push it I guess…

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Why did I use to relax at 8 weeks post?

So given that I washed and blow dried on Sunday, I feel like yes I’m over 8 weeks post and I have regrowth, but there’s nothing substantial – nothing to make me feel as though I need to relax.  I think wearing my hair down definitely needs heat to straighten out the parting and heat to bevel the ends and try and create less of the sticking up effect, so it definitely looks better in a smoothed bun that down at the moment. So I guess relaxing will happen at 10 weeks at the earliest 12 at the latest.

Now that I have bought my fascinator for Henley I also realise that it will look nice with a roller set up do but the head piece will distract so much from my hair that I actually won’t need a fresh relaxer for it to look good with the roller set up do, so I think I will definitely make it to 10 weeks at the very least since my hair does not feel desperate for a relaxer at the moment.

I think by the end of the year I should have the extra 2 inches required to make APL, so by March 31st I reckon I will be bsb bound.

My hair had a tantrum

tantrum

8 weeks post.  So today I washed my hair after I came home from the gym – it was filthy because it was greasy and full of sweat and probably a lot of make-up from my fringe (bangs) from yesterday.  So I washed with my sulphate free bottle of Cream of Nature (CON) and I think my hair really likes that shampoo because it made my hair feel better as it was feeling gummy and the strands of breakage had started.  I  then deep conditioned under the hooded dryer for about ten minutes.

Now because I have been thinking lately that I should really be using a leave in conditioner rather than just blow drying my bare hair, I took the Hawaiian Silky leave in conditioner in the orange and purple bottle and began rubbing in a few squirts in to my hair after I had rinsed out the Affirm conditioner.  Once I finished I began combing it through with my jilbere.  I immediately notice that my hair went from being completely ‘breakage-free’ to straight out breaking after I applied the leave in con.  Every bit of hair I combed had strands coming out.  Straight away I was like hell no – I am not blow drying my hair in this state because it will literally all come out.  So I went straight back to the bathroom and rinsed off the leave-in I even re-shampooed, then rubbed in the Affirm 5 in 1 conditioner again.  Rinsed it out and my hair was fine again.

It was literally like my hair had a tantrum like a 3 month old baby screaming and bawling when a stranger tries to hold it and then as soon as the stranger returned to its mother it calms and stops crying.  So bottom line?  I am not going bother worrying about applying a leave-in conditioner, no point fixing what’s not broken  – I’m going continue as is with just affirm 5 in 1 and then my keracare moisturiser after blow drying.   It was a very insightful lesson.

The funny thing is before I discovered affirm 5 in 1 I used to think that’s just how my hair was.  I  didn’t know how to stop my hair from coming out my head like that, I thought it had to do with me being relaxed.   Which is why I was so frustrated with my natural hair for doing the same thing.  I think I actually could have stayed natural if I had figured out a way to keep it under control.

Nonetheless I am keen to know which ingredient it was in the leave-in that upset my hair.  Was it the mineral oil? The cones or was it the porosity?  Or could it just be the fact that my hair doesn’t like being moisturised when wet?  I would be interested to know what caused it so I can avoid whatever it is.  Either way I am just so glad that I have discovered affirm 5 in 1 because I feel like this product can literally nip a setback in the bud! I feel blessed to have found it.

On a positive my blow dry was great for 8 weeks post hair –my hair was still ‘blow dryable’ and the hair that I did lose from the blow dry was not an alarming amount given that I am 8 weeks post and have not properly detangled from root to tip for a week and a half.  So to answer my own question that I posted up thread: ‘Is the affirm amazing enough to strengthen my hair when I have a lot of regrowth – yes!  It’s definitely a keeper –  I feel like my hair is normal now.  Life is so much better when you have your breakage under control…

8 weeks post saviour: the bun maker

I think the high bun with my bun maker is definitely a look that is working for my 8 weeks post (as of tomorrow) hair.  It is at the stage where wearing it down looks stringy, because the roots are so thick, the ends look see through, it’s harder to keep the moisture in and so bunning is the perfect solution and the regrowth is not at the stage where the bun looks hideous.

I think it’s a look that works rather well with my Gok wan glasses even I say so myself!

I feel like 9 weeks post is not really a stretch – so I would still like to stretch to 10 weeks post but Henley is going to ruin that unless I can do a deep, deep condition and press out my roots the night before Henley – but not sure it’s worth torturing my hair with extra heat just to entertain clients…

Thirsty hair

7.5 weeks post relaxer – I’m suddenly very conscious of my regrowth – my hair also seemed really thirsty yesterday – I basically need to wash and deep condition at some point this weekend when I will be officially 8 weeks post relaxer.  I will then get through next week and then will relax at 9 weeks post unless I end up feeling at that stage that I do not have enough regrowth.  If it was not for the Henley Regatta which takes place on the Thursday 4th July after the 9th week, I would have done a 10 week stretch.  But given I will want to wear my hair down at the Henly Regatta, it’s best to just get it done the week before.

When my hair goes into dry shrinkage mode I really hate it – the ends look see-through when dry and when well moisturised it can look stringy and thin – A far cry from the picture above from Paramount when I was 6 weeks post.  A lot can change in two weeks!

Hard water/soft water?

Ok so I am firmly 7 weeks post and since I washed my hair on Thursday morning I am definitely more conscious of regrowth – may be effect of washing with hard water now that I am back in the UK.  I also co-washed rather than shampoo washing because I left my shampoo in Thailand.  I think I will end up relaxing at 9 weeks post since henly regatta is on the Thursday of the 10th week and I can’t get to the hairdresser midweek because of the opening hours.  Doesn’t seem like anyone on lhcf relaxes that early – feels a bit too early, but then I know my roots will be visible.

In regards to hair products the affirm seems to be still creating its magic, which has meant that I have continued to blow dry after washing, again did not lose an alarming amount of hair during Thursday’s wash – which is unusual for when the new growth creeps in.  Will have to keep an eye on it for when I do my 8 weeks-post wash.  I just think that blow drying is a nice quick way to dry the hair smoothly so if I can do that right up to relaxer day without any issues then I will.  After Thursday’s wash it did look quite poofy after washing so wearing it down didn’t seem to be cutting it.

Post-holiday hair

So I’m 6, going on 7 weeks post relaxer and unlike the last time I’m not as desperate to relax because…

1.     I have been in Thailand (and Dubai) where the water is softer hence my regrowth seemed less obvious

2.     Since discovering affirm 5 in 1 I have been blowdrying (not straightening) after every wash as the hair seems more able to handle it, because its stronger (esp after swimming while on holiday) this has helped to smoothen the regrowth

3.     I have been too busy holidaying to think about hair

4.     Also my hair has not been bothering me – the extra inch gained from the last relaxer has helped it to look good in most styles – so this morning after I got back from the gym I just kept it in a high pony and put it in a sock bun – looks ok I think

5.     My hair still looks decent when worn down.  Here I am at 6 weeks post on Dionne’s b’day:

post holiday hair

As much as the Thai water was good for my hair I’m not sure the humidity was good for the look of my hair – that’s probably one of the few things you can give the UK kudos for –  you can hold a curl in this weather cool dry weather without it being limp!

I need to get some more shampoo since the whole limit on liquids thing meant that I left shampoo for ease of travel and also from fear of my baggage being overweight.

I also want to keep up swimming now I am back from holiday so will need to look into getting some protective swimming conditioner and some chelating shampoo to keep my hair from breaking.

So yup looking forward to next relaxer and the extra growth it will bring esp as I have kept my ends healthy and breakage to a minimum this time so should be able to go without a trim assuming nothing changes.  I expect to be borderline APL.

Fingers crossed the relaxer application does not hurt as much as it did last time.  May be able to stretch to 12 weeks this time – although that will mean my relaxer day will fall awkwardly after pay day… hmm we shall see how it goes – a lot can change very quickly.