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Curly Nikki

The Turning Point…

By January 27th, 202120 Comments

What addition did you make to your hair care routine that got you over the hump (be it length or health)?

Henna and my beloved Twist-n-Curl grew my hair to healthier new lengths. The weekly deep treatments and bunning probably didn’t hurt either.

Your response may give the next curly an inspired idea!


  • LBell says:

    I've been natural for 14 years but it's only been in the last two years (since my last BC) that I've really seen a measurable difference in my hair's health and length. (I have 4b/CNapp hair.)

    Back when I first started out I watered my hair every day. I never had issues with dryness and it grew like a weed. However, once it reached a length where wash-and-gos became more trouble than they were worth, I switched to twists and twistouts and stopped watering every day. I also started experimenting with heat to try different styles. I did this for five years and then I locked. Two years ago I came out of the locs and BC'd.

    This time around I kept watering my hair every day even past the safe wash-and-go length: I basically redo my hair each night in fat twists or braids that I spray with a mix of 3/4 water and 1/4 castor oil. I also learned not to use protein too much AND (until recently) I pretty much avoided heat entirely. The result: My hair is longer and stronger now, two years after my last BC, than it was in the FIVE years of loose hair previously.

    Currently I'm trying to give up combs and brushes entirely…it's hard though. 🙂 Also, I am SOOO tempted to try henna or cassia esp. since I'm going to be visiting my parents next week: They live about 30 minutes from the Henna for Hair lady (Catherine).

  • Unknown says:

    I'm still transitioning and can't wait to share my success story. Since I don't plan to big chop, I'm making my peace w/ the 2 textures. So braid and curl is my signature style.

    As I type, I believe I have found my magic mix for three day hair. I started with a cowash with Nature's Gate Aloe moisturizing condish. I airdried in a ponytail. I can't braid and curl intil I'm almost totally dry or I'll wake up to wet hair which =s a fizzy mess.
    So the holy grail this time was my moiture mix. EVCO, Nature's gate condish, aloe vera juice, East African Shea butter for shea Butter Hut. I eyeballed it so I cant give exact measurements but it was a creamy blend. I liberally added the mix to each braid, then put HE mousse (purple one) on top, braided and then curled each braid on a satin covered sponge roller. I ended up wih about 10 plaits.

    Two days later, my NG and my relaxed hair is playing well together. I have re-braided each night but have not added any additional moisture mix and no combing to elimate the chance of frizz.

    I also have to cosign on Henna. I have completed 3 henna treatments over the past 9 weeks and my strands are stroner than they have ever been. I was 9 months into a transition before texlaxing again in Late April due to excessive breakage. This time around, 5 months into this transition, n breakage what so ever. I'll be transitioning for another 9 months and I'm equip fo the task. Hope this helps someone!

  • Shake says:

    henna, shea butter, coconut oil and twist outs are GOD SENDS!!! and of course weekly dt's are like a cure-all usually. also learning to use conditioner as styler and simplifying my routine have helped out tremendously!!!!

  • Cygnet says:

    As I said in my post 9/21 8:28PM, I henna every 4-6 weeks. However, I primarily do it for color, and I don't need as much color as I get, so I try not to leave it in for longer than an hour; and I really should go for only half an hour, because color actually happens rather quickly.

    My problem with it is getting all of it out. I never seem to quite manage it. Thus, this last time, when I did it at night and went to bed with HE TT in my hair under a plastic bag, I discovered the next morning that my curls were noticeably relaxed. I don't think it was solely the effect of the conditioner, and I'd never noticed it before.

    My mom, bless her heart, can't stand the intensity of the color, however, and she sorely misses my former golden blonde that almost was strawberry, which is the color I was born with, so for her, I'm making a change. I plan to only use 1/4 cup henna to 200g cassia to see if I can deposit less color. If it works, that will become part of my routine.

    Also, I saw something called Eco Styling Gel (I think I got the name right) that is supposed to be a budget-friendly substitute for Kinky Curly Curling Custard. When I run out of my Long Aid, I want to try it. Has anyone else ever used it?

  • Curlie Girlie says:

    I used to roller set and flat iron in the winter months and wash and go in the summer then brush comb and break of my hair off in the months in between. Although I never had a relaxer my hair could never grow past bra strap length. I would just get trims and assume that's as long as my hair was meant to grow. This summer I decided to cut out all heat and just wash and go which helped but I got single strand knots like never before. Then the CN TnC came into my life I've only been doing it consistently for about a month but it has really worked wonders!! (I feel like I'm on an infomercial LOL)

  • Liza says:

    I have been natural all my life, but only in the past 8 months have I really been trying to incorporate healthy hair practices. My hair has been growing and retaining length due to:
    -regular washing/conditioning/detangling
    -leaving in Herbal Essence Hello Hydration and/or Garnier Sleek and Shine conditioners to style and moisturize/condition hair
    -sealing my ends with oil or shea butter at night
    -wearing more twist outs/braid outs and less wash-and-go's (less knots too!)

    For those of you saying "henna", how often do you do it? I just did my first henna treatment about two weeks ago, and all I've noticed is a color change. How many treatments did you do before you saw real results?

  • Siera J. says:

    I learned that wash n go's are the fastest route to tangle city, the best way for me to avoide single strand knots and tangles is to wash every 3 days (co-wash really) and twist it up. My ends are so much healthier now.

  • NewbieNaturalDiva says:

    Not much heat (maybe once a month)Roller sets and weekly deep conditioning treatments. Also, co-washing has helped a lot with moisture, tangles, and shedding.

  • Cygnet says:

    I first got chemicals when I was in my teens. One of my aunts had taken cosmetology and thought to open her own salon, and she Jheri curled everybody in the house. For perhaps the first time in my life my hair began to get the moisture it really needed, thanks to the Stuff In The Brown Bottle. Through the years, every time my hair has ever done well for any period, it's because I've reverted to the Stuff or something like it to moisturize my hair. My hair loves moisture like meat loves salt.

    Right now, my hair, which grows slowly, has grown long enough to hit the base of my neck when it's wet. As far as I'm concerned, I'm on my way away from the TWA stage into the how-long-will-it-grow-and-what-will-I-do-with-it stage. In addition, it's heading to the time of year when dryness will become a problem. So I'm trying to figure out what will work best to keep my growing hair moisturized and easy to manage. Currently, my routine is cowashing with HE TT/HH, moisturizing with BRX Sheen Spray (or the Stuff) diluted 1 to 3 in water, and styling with Long Aid Gel Activator. I also do henna every 4-6 weeks. I'm trying to decide whether or not I want to twist it at night. This involves spraying down a section, combing it with a wide-tooth comb, and twisting it loosely. It doesn't help my curls to form any better—my hair won't stay twisted no matter how tightly I do it, so I try not to torture it too much—but it does make it easier to style in the morning without dousing my head. I'll accept recommendations for some budget-friendly alternatives if anyone want to make any.

  • Anonymous says:

    Weekly DT, Monthly DDT, Monthly Henna, and I can testify to the Amla and Olive Heavy Cream by Qhemet. Where has this stuff been all of my life?! I discovered I have to condition in layers: moisturizing, diluted shampoo, DT, leave-in, then the cream on top. Result: beautiful coils!

  • Anonymous says:

    1.Simply letting my hair out so it could breathe. My hair grows faster if left out as opposed to being pulled back in a pony tail or a bun. This is the same for me natural or relaxed.
    2. Cowashing 2-3 times a week. This has helped my hair to have less tangles and increased definition and softness.

  • Anonymous says:

    The UPA CLIP!!!! I love the freedom of being abel to wash and condition my hair as often as I want but don't always have the time to set it in with twists. Wash and gos are timesaving but can lead to tangles and breakage. So on those days when I want to wash but don't have time to set, I snap on my UPA clip and go. It looks natural and has kept me from cutting my APL natural hair back down to a buzz cut.

  • Anonymous says:

    I'm currently transitioning and coconut oil on my scalp with aloe vera gel on my hair makes for a great bantu knot out and have seemed to stimulate my hair growth.

  • aubin says:

    I've been natural for twenty years but it's only been in the last 6 months that I've truly had healthy hair, which I attribute mostly to regular henna treatments. My curls are now thick, shiny and springy – three things I never imagined I would see in my hair before. I've also seen dramatic increase in length since I started henna treatments – about five inches in six months. Henna definitely put me over the hump!

  • Alexis says:

    1. Eliminating the use of heat, except the use of a heat cap when deep conditioning.

    2. Henna

    3. Amla and Olive Heavy Cream by Qhemet Biologics

  • M.J. says:

    conditioning daily (w/Aubrey's HSR) and sealing (avocado or castor oil)…hands down

  • Anonymous says:

    I am so glad you posed this question Nikki! I am a newbie at this. My last relaxer was in Feb 09 and i have been wearin braids..I big cut in July and my hair is 3 1/2, 4 inches..Nothing will keep my hair moisturized..I've used olive oil, cantu shea butter, mizani oil..I might try cooking need help..My hair is so short its coming out of the micro braids and I dont want it to break off and split..Sistas I need yall..


  • Chaka_Millz says:

    Definately sealing my ends with castor oil, shea butter or EVOO at night. And applying a leave in daily. My hair is a lot more moisturized now than it was when I first BC'd. The protein and deep conditioning treatments dont hurt either thoguh 😉

  • Anonymous says:

    Moisturizing with a water based moisturizer ( I would make a homemade spritz of aloe vera juice, conditioner, and oil) and SEALING with castor oil. I love sealing, most time I use castor oil but most oils will do. My hair doesn't like butters in general but I do seal my moisturizer (even if it is water and conditioner) daily. And Baggy my ends did help also.

  • Jamie says:

    By minimizing my heat use (flat iron/blow dryer) to only about every 4-6 months has helped me. My hair has never been past apl, but now I'm pushing towards mbl! I know now that if I want long hair I have to wear it curly(twist, tnc, twist out), do a weekly dt, henna, and use shea butter to protect my ends. It truely does work.

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