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  • Tangle Taming using As I Am

    Dealing with tangles can be one of the greatest styling challenges for naturalistas, particularly those who are relatively new to wearing their hair in its naturally coily state. Believe it or not, detangling the hair need not be a problem. Here are some insights and tips.  hair tangles

    • Our hair tangles easily because of its unique configuration. The small-diameter spirals easily intertwine with one another, and the "un-doing" of this interaction can take some doing. This situation is commonly called tangling. Furthermore, sometimes the irresistible urge for our strands to wrap and coil results in a knot or two.
    • Tangles must be carefully dismantled to avoid breakage.s
    • First, realize that going long periods of time without shampooing increases the likelihood of tangles. This is whether you are wearing your hair out, (in a wash & wear style, twist-out, afro, etc.) or a protective style, (i.e. twists, braids, coils, etc.) The up-to-100 strands of hair that normally shed from our scalp, gets caught up in our mane. Also, hair tends to dry out between shampoos. These two phenomena in combination with the coily configuration can make for tenacious tangles.
    • Shampoo at least once a week. Go no longer than two. If you are concerned that cleansing will dehydrate your hair and deplete the moisture that you've worked so hard to infuse into it, cleanse with a rich low-poo cream shampoo like As I Am® Cleansing Pudding+ or a moisturizing no poo like As I Am® Coconut CoWash.
    • Make sure that you've removed all of the twists and braids from your hair before cleansing.
    • Thoroughly wet your hair before applying the cleanser, keeping your hair aligned in the same direction.
    • Apply the cleansing product generously, and gently massage throughout your hair. With product still on your hair, (whether it's lather from a poo or cream from a no-poo), you can begin to detangle. Add more water if your hair is not saturated and your fingers don't easily slip down your strands. Begin detangling on one side, gently working a wide-toothed comb or a flexible-bristle detangling brush through your hair. Start at the ends and proceed up to the scalp. Continue detangling on the opposite side, then to the top, crown and back portions of your hair. (That's how I do it, however you may order your sections any way you like.) 
      hair tangles

    Note: It may seem that there's a lot of hair coming out in your comb or detangling brush. Just remember that you are removing the hair that normally sheds each day times the number of days since you last detangled. The more frequently you shampoo, the less noticeable the hair in your comb or brush will be, and the easier your hair will be to detangle.

    • Do not tug, pull, or tear at your hair. If there's a large knot, add more poo or even some conditioner, and gently pick it apart with your fingers, the end of a rattail comb or hair pin. If it is a small knot, wet your fingers and run them down the strand over and over again. Oftentimes this will help release the knot.
    • After detangling is done, comb all of your hair in the same direction, back and away from your hairline. Now it's time to concentrate on cleansing. Gently massage the lather or cowash conditioner (that's already in your hair) throughout your hair and gently massage your scalp to dislodge oil, dirt and loose skin cells. Add water if necessary. Don't ruffle or scrub. Rinse your hair thoroughly, again maintaining a one-directional alignment of your hair, and being careful not to re-tangle it. Repeat with a second cleansing only if you deem it necessary.
    • It's time to condition. Generously apply conditioner to hair and distribute throughout. Gently part your hair in large sections with your hands as you apply so that the conditioner is evenly spread. Comb or brush through again with your wide-toothed comb or detangling brush to remain free of tangles.
    • Rinse as required. (Don't rinse if you are using a leave-in conditioner.)
    • Always use a good leave-in conditioner as the final step in your cleansing routine and as the first step in styling.

    If you wish, you can wait until the conditioning step to do your detangling work. The same principles apply: spread a generous amount of conditioner throughout very wet hair. Comb or brush through gently, section-by-section, from root to tip, and then rinse.

  • Regain the Health of Your Hair with Design Essential Naturals

    Silk Press with Zero Damage! Experience our advanced Agave & Lavender Blow Dry & Silk Press Collection formulated with natural agave extract, soothing lavender, mango fruit butters, and a proprietary blend of antioxidants, restorative vitamins and superfoods like broccoli oil and green tea extract. This collection works synergistically to transform natural textures to a silky-smooth finish without worry of breakage or destroying the hair’s natural curl pattern caused by heat damage.  Restores vital moisture to dry and chemically treated hair  thus preventing split-ends and breakage. The  result – much healthier looking blow-outs!

    Tip #1:  Get Into Design Essentials Agave & Lavender Blow Dry & Silk Press Collection

    You don’t necessarily have to visit a professional stylist to achieve a bomb ‘silk press ‘ that will last you days to come.  You just need the right products formulated to get the job done.

    Try our NEW. Agave & Lavender Silk Press CollectionWhether your relaxed or natural, this easy-to-use 4 step collection allows anyone handy with a blow-dryer and flat iron the ability to thermal style without worrying about damaging your hair’s natural curl pattern.

    Maintenance Tip #2:  Avoid Humidity & Excess Moisture

    If you’re natural you probably know by now that reversion is no joke and the smallest amount of moisture and/or humidity in the air will have your freshly ‘silk pressed ‘ hair looking a hot mess.  Which is why you MUST, we repeat MUST, use products that fight against humidity during the styling process to help reduce reverting and swelling.

    Try Design Essential Natural. Bamboo & silk HCO Leave-in Blow Dry Conditioner  or Agave & Lavender Moisturising Blow Dry & style Primer before blow-drying and Silk Essentials Thermal Straightening Serum  or Agave & Lavender Thermal Protectant Crème  prior to flat-ironing.  These professional products will prep your hair for a flawless silk press, guaranteed to last.  But it’s important to note, no silk press will last in high humidity environments (like beach destinations, deserts, saunas, indoor pools…you get our drift), no matter what!

    So there you have it, 5 maintenance tips to keep your silk press looking salon fresh for at least 7-10 days!  Abide by all 5 and we promise you won’t be disappointed.

    Maintenance Tip #3: Wrap It Up

    When you’re not in a setting that calls for your hair to be free-flowing…KEEP YOUR STRANDS WRAPPED morning, day, and night to prolong the life of your silk press.

    Securing your hair underneath a silk scarf, satin wrap, or in protective doobie wrap (like the one Rihanna rocked with confidence at the 2013 American Music Awards) not only creates movement memory so that your hair falls beautifully every time you let it down, but keeping it wrapped shields your mane from environmental factors like wind, humidity, or harsh weather which could ruin the body and shine of your silk press.

    Maintenance Tip #4:  Avoid Thermal Tools Or Keep Heat Settings On Low 

    Resist the urge to use thermal tools to maintain the life of your silk press.  As you probably know, using heat on your hair daily (especially if the temperature is too high) will only leave your hair looking fried and frazzled – and that’s not the look we’re going for.

    Photo Credit: YouTube/ TheChicNatural

    Instead, pin-curl your hair at night to maintain the body and beauty of your curls without the use of heat.

    Simply take each curl and pin-curl the section with a hair pin or prong-clip.  Repeat until the entire head is complete and secure with a bonnet.

    In the morning, remove all pin-curls.  Finger-style or brush curls into desired style.

    If you absolutely insist on using a heating tool to refresh your curl pattern, be sure to use a heat-protectant and keep heat below 180 degrees.

    Maintenance Tip #5:  Use Minimal Product

    To keep your strands bouncy and silky, avoid using too much product, which will cause the hair to look weighed down.

    A few drops of Silk Essentials before you wrap your hair in the evening will do the trick to ensure it’s moisturized.

    Then if needed (keyword being IF), a light mist of Design Essentials Reflections Liquid Shine in the morning to give you a rejuvenating sheen.

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