Friday, 24 October 2014

Mango and Cocoa Butter, the 411

IG: @naturalinlondon

Before I get into today's post I'm going to apologise for missing last week's. I promised a couple of months ago that I'll put something up at least once a fortnight, and I didn't last Friday. See the thing is, I was kidnapped (not really). I was held against my will (completely in line with my will) by a New Girl marathon that I had no desire to watch and in fact, it was torture (I LOVED IT!). Sorry guys! <3

Anywhoosies, on to today's post. About a year an a half ago I formulated this awesome hair cream detangler thing that was based on Shea butter and Okra. I loved that ish. My hair loved that ish. After a few months of making and using the aforementioned awesomeness, I became curious about other popular butters and decided to do some tests to see what they did to my hair. So I came up with three new creams with the shea butter substituted for either the exact amount of mango butter, the exact amount of cocoa butter, or a half and half mix of the two.

After using the creams here's what I found:

  • Mango butter definitely made my hair majorly soft, the softest of all the butters. However it also made my hair extremely frizzy. Like a frizziness I haven't experienced in like 2 1/2 years, ever since I started formulating pH controlled products.
  • Cocoa butter had the least softening properties. It also made my hair the least frizzy, in fact it had a slight 'slickening' effect. 
  • The half/half mix wasn't memorable (lol) 
  • The shea butter version was definitely my favourite, it softened my hair without causing extreme frizz.
For the record, I have no problem with frizz. My hair is naturally frizzy and I don't try to change that. But I wouldn't use a product that made my hair frizzier. 

So that's all folks. What are your experiences with Cocoa and Mango butter, or even other butters? Do you even like using butters or butter based products?

Hope this post finds you well,

Rella x

Friday, 3 October 2014

How I Use Shea Butter

IG: @naturalinlondon
When I first started my natural hair journey err'body spoke about the miracles of Shea butter. It seemed like every blogger and every YouTuber that had anything to do with natural hair was also a member of Sheanity. And so of course, newbie that I was, I wanted in. So I scoured the Nigerian markets of east London until an ori source was found and proceeded to baptise my strands with shea as if application alone will get me to hair heaven.

Now, I was disappointed because this thing that had been touted as divine nectar did not transform my chronically dry coils into silky moisturised curls,  nor did it 'seal' in moisture for any longer than anything else did. In fact, it just seemed to make my hair look duller. So after about a year of trying to use it in 25 different ways I threw up a deuces sign and two stepped away from my shea jar.

A year after my two step, prodigal son that I was, I returned to shea to see if we could work things out. See at this point, I was completely disillusioned of all things pertaining to natural hair and more specifically; my natural hair. I no longer looked at my hair type as a symptom of a problem and now understood that my hair will always look and feel and behave the way it does because that is how it is suppossed to. So this time when I approched the shea throne my bathroom cabinet I wasn't expecting extracts of the inside of a unicorn horn that had been steeped in the tears of a leprechaun for a thousand years. I understood that by definition, a butter cannot moisturise. However, I also understood what emolliants were, and that shea butter can have a softening effect. So armed with this knowledge I carried out informed experiments with shea butter.

So now, years later, this is what I use shea butter for. If I'm doing any kind of long term style, like my annual mini twist set. I will braid or twist with my shea butter mix. During the time when my hair is braided or twisted (nornally two months)  I do not mositurise. At most I might reapply some butter mix to my ends every fortnight. When it's time to take down the style, my hair is at it's softest and I feel like my head is covered in lambs wool. Seriously.

If at any point I want to stretch my hair for something, I will apply my shea butter mix to dry hair and braid. Nothing (heatless) stretches my hair like shea butter. If I want maximum stretch I will do this every night for like four days. By the end of it, my hair looks almost like a blow out. If I wanted really stretched hair I would use thread instead of braids.

So that's it. Now instead of being disappointed by myths and folklore, I am able to truly appreciate Shea butter for what it can actually do for my hair. Do you use shea butter? If so how do you use it and have you always used it that way?

I hope this post finds you well!

Rella x

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Naked As The Day I Was Born by Rella J

Hey Guys,

So after a two year hiatus I'm back to posting videos on my YouTube music channel. Here's my latest video if any of you were interested. P.S a vid for that braidout will be up at some point :)