Sunday, May 15, 2011

Where to Find Natural Hair and Skin products in Trinidad - an update

Hi Folks,
there has been an overwhelming response to that first post about finding products in Trinbago which suggests to me that many Trinis are interested in the natural hair journey. That makes my heart really happy. lol. Here are some other places where you can find products. Free advertising, I know, but I'm hoping that one of these days if I decide to do a giveaway they will provide some gifts. lmao. We'll see. If you go to these places tell them MzNappyTrini sent you ok. lol. 

1. Body Beautiful On D Avenue


Located in Woodbrook Port Of Spain, they stock many of the favorites of your YouTube gurus and go to bloggers. From Kinky Curly to JBCO to African Shea butter to Jane Carter products, they have it. They also have natural skincare products as well. I believe they do demonstrations of KCCC if you make an appointment. The best thing about them - they do home deliveries to any locations in Trinidad AND Tobago! Friend them on facebook here to see more of the products they offer as well as to keep abreast of new products, promotions and sales.  

2. Hair It is


In addition to stocking lots and lots of weave, they stock a lot of the natural hair care brand names like Carol's Daughter, Mixed Chicks, Ms Jessie's and many other popular hair care lines in the US, most notably Chi and Moroccan Oil. This business is owned by none other than Ms Danielle Jones, MS T&T Universe 2004 who was the 4th runner up at the Ms Universe pageant that year. 

If you have the dispensable income to spare and always wanted to try these products, you can pay them a visit. In my personal opinion, these product lines are a luxury, not a necessity. You can take great care of your hair without using products that cost an arm or a leg. They are also located in Woodbrook Port of Spain and run some pretty good sales from time to time, more on the weave than the hair products but hey you know how we Caribbean chicas like to keep ppl guessing. lol. They are also on facebook so go ahead and friend them if you are so inclined.

3. Cher Mere


Many of us growing up in Trini are well aware of the Cher Mere product line. If you haven't used them you have definitely at least heard about them. They are still around and their product line has expanded. They have several outlets throughout trinidad and do business throughout the Caribbean and ship internationally as well. Their products contain wonderful natural ingredients like aloe and rachette and are infused with a wide array of herbal oils. They also produce products for skin care and offer spa services as well. Check them out on Facebook or get more info on their website

The rest of info I have is still a work in progress. I have been told by Trini naturals who read the blog that my southern naturalistas can find products at a place called Santas??? I'm not sure where it is, somebody give me deets on the actual adress if you can. You can also get products at the herbal store at Carlton Centre. Again, if you have deets, please share. Apparently you can get Mixed Chicks products at some store at Carlton Centre as well. lol 

Ok ppl keep sharing info and I'll keep on updating! We still on the lookout for infusium 23 leave-in in T&T. First person to find it gets some chilli bibi! LMAO

Stay blessed

For my relaxed hair sisters considering going natural - tips for the transition


I was recently asked for a few tips on going natural from a sister who is currently relaxed and thinking about transitioning. I told her I might just do a blog post with the answer because I'm pretty sure she is not the only one in her situation with this question so C this is for you! lol

Let me make it clear from the beginning that I myself have never been relaxed and so have never had that relaxed to natural transition per say. I have however done some big and not so big chops (BC) in my life and I have definitely had experiences of not taking care of my hair as I should and now actually taking the time to do better and observing the results so I think I can still share some useful tips.

My first piece of advice would be to take the time to get your mind right about what you are about to do. I spend a significant amount of time scouring YouTube videos, natural hair blogs and forums and it seems that a few key themes emerge for sisters contemplating the transition or already in it or even those who have BCed. Many complain about how hard it is to manage their hair, not liking their curl pattern, not knowing how to care for or style their hair. Others have problems of acceptance, from their family, their friends, their colleagues and even themselves. Some ladies go through a stage of not feeling as feminine or as pretty or as attractive as they did before they embarked on the journey. 

To help you get your mind and in turn your spirit prepared here are a few insights to help you cross those hurdles. 

1. First and foremost, hair is just hair!

What your hair and what you choose to do with it ultimately means should be at your sole dictate and nobody else. If you decide to embark on the path to natural because of deep seated philosophical or even health issues or whether you decide to do it on a whim is your prerogative. Don't let anybody invalidate your experience based on your rationale. Once you are secure in your reasoning for doing what you are doing it becomes much easier to be strong in the face of negativity that may or may not come your way but more importantly it will make your journey that much more fulfilling.

2. The journey may not start off easy but I promise it gets better with time

Remember, it's like learning to read all over again. Your natural hair is not the same as your relaxed hair. What worked when you were relaxed may not work on your new growth and what works on your twa may no longer be effective when you get to shoulder length, if that is a goal of yours. Be cognizant of this, it helps to ease the frustration on those days when your hair is acting like a rebellious child. With this in mind I would advise that if your lifestyle allows, it is a good idea to not do you entire transition in braids or a weave as you miss out on that valuable learning time of getting to understand what your curly hair likes. When you do the bigchop you will already have an arsenal of products and styling techniques you have confidence in as opposed to being thrown head first into curls and/or kinks that you didn't spend any significant amount of time getting to know.

3. No two heads of hair are the same

The only way to truly learn what works best for your hair is through your own experimentation. It's great to learn from other ppl's experiences but there are no guarantees. This is particularly important now that we have all these natural hair gurus, products, youtube vids and blogs. Take everything with a pinch of salt and find what applies to you and enjoy the rest. Do your own research and view bandwagons with great suspicion. lol. I'll take the time here to say resist the urge to become a product junkie! lol

4. Your hair is always growing!

You don't need growth aides, magical products or anything else. The key to maximal hair growth is keeping your hair follicles healthy via diet, exercise and your daily water intake, keeping your scalp clean and healthy with a good cleansing regimen, and retaining length by moisturizing your hair and protecting your ends. More on this later.

5. You are not guaranteed to have curls

I have encountered so many ppl who get inspired to go natural based on somebody who has a more relaxed curl pattern and then when they realize that they can't get ms jessie curls or carol daughter curls or mixed chick curls or kinky curly curls they are devastated. There is no one natural and you may in fact find that you have numerous types of curls or kinks on your head. All natural hair is beautiful and your hair will be beautiful because YOU are beautiful. Don't have unrealistic expectations for your curl pattern and embrace and work with whatever you have!

Now that that is out of the way lets get down to the science of hair. In my next post I will provide some specific hair care tips you may want to keep in mind and other resources to make your transition as painless as possible!

To transitioners and formally relaxed sisters who read this blog, feel free to add your own tips in the comments! Let's help our sisters out.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Da Curls (and Kinks and Tangles lol) are Back

Got to love that shrinkage lol
So after 6+ weeks of straight hair I'm back to the curly side. It was still pretty much straight after all this time but I just felt like I needed to wash my scalp. I think the straightening may have been a bit of a hair setback in terms of growth but it was still fun while it lasted and seeing how long I was able to maintain it and the potential to go even longer, I may consider doing it again sometime in the future. lol. 

Ready to be washed bye bye, it was good while it lasted

I realize that the days of washing my hair loose are definitely coming to an end. Usually I would wash my hair in four sections but this time I had to do it in 10. 

Fatty twists done, ready to hit the shower

It took me all of 3 hrs to shampoo my scalp and hair, do a protein treatment, condition, deep condition and ACV rinse. The good news is that doing it in all those sections made detangling and twisting my hair relatively easy and took 1.5 hrs. For detangling I used my fingers first, then my big tooth comb and then finally my tangle teezer. Patience really is the key.

Right Bag: 6 weeks worth of shed hair (collected over time lol)
Left Bag: shed hair from detangling after washing yesterday.

For deep conditioning I tried the Hollywood Beauty Carrot Cholesterol I got with the hair dress cream I used in my adapted kimmaytube a while ago. It felt weird in my hand and going on my hair and has a strange baby powder smell but after 15 minutes under my Huetiful, my hair was definitely extremely moisturized and juicy juicy. I then rinsed with My ACV rinse and am happy to report that all my curls are back, in their original state with no apparent heat damage anywhere. Hallelujah!

I think I am going to have to make some changes to my regimen, most importantly how often I wash my hair because I can't be doing 4 hrs every week or even every 2 weeks. I think if I had not oiled my scalp I would have been able to go even longer than 6 weeks no problem so I didn't oil my scalp this week as an experiment. I think I'll be going for once a month washing and trying to use minimal product in between to keep my hair clean.

My hair is now in 22 two strand twists and I will be keeping them in for as long as possible but I am open to dry retwisting if need be. I plan on moisturizing with infusium when needed and sealing with coconut oil, baggying often. As of right now I am enjoying having my juicy curls back! Say a special prayer for me and my tangles. lol

Juicy juicy!

Today's regimen
Shampoo - HE Hello Hydration
Protein Treatment - Nexxus Emergencee
Conditioner - Suave Tropical Coconut
Deep Conditioner - Hollywood Beauty Carrot Cholesterol Deep Conditioning Cream
Leave in Conditioner - Infusium 23, adapted kimmaytube (hollywood Beauty Carrot Creme and Redken Extreme ANtisnap base)
Sealant - Coconut Oil