Weave Chronicles: Day 50 - a look back

Dreamgirls Hair Salon (Culver City, CA) featured me on their facebook page! This is when I got my hair cut around Day 20. It also seemed like the day I had 2 hours of sleep! A lot has changed since then, especially since my real hair has been growing like crazy and my sideburns are starting to slightly rise revealing my curly Q's underneath - yikes!! I was hoping I could go at least 2.5 months but because of the side burns I think I can only go a solid two months. Even greasing down my edges has proved a failure. The only other option is to take a blade/shaver to my sideburns and that won't be happening!

Weave Chronicles: Day 35

Has it been a little over a month already??! Feels like 6 months! Can't say my lazy butt has missed combing out my hair every two weeks with coconut and avocado oils, BUT I sometimes wish for my old big hair, poof and all! Nonetheless, two weeks ago I accomplished my life long goal of getting a short hair cut and wa-lah!

I am happy with it. Sometimes I wish I could mousse it up and do a cool cockatoo hairstyle or maybe some halle berry stylization but how you see it pretty much what it is 24/7. I have to say, extra short hair ranks #1 when going to the gym because...you just go! No more forgetting your hair tie at home and/or dealing with hair brushing around on your sweaty face! Dries pretty fast too, even for a weave. I quickly blow dry the back and front and within two minutes the hair has dried (tracks are probably still damp though).

I also washed it last weekend and even though it is not as beach wavy as when the weave was shoulder length, it still has its charm

But sometimes I feel like I look like a character from Scott Pilgrim Saves the World lol

 

Weave Chronicles: Day 20 - Damp and Wet Tracks

So, I think I might be one of the few people with a weave on my head who has tracks in a perpetual state of wet/dampness! The paranoia of my hair mildewing is getting to me. The last thing I want to think about is standing in the crowded elevator going up to my office and everybody is smelling some sort of mustiness/10-day old washcloth smell! The thing is, I work out everyday - not just the light 30 minute jog - I mean like a hardcore 45 minutes stairmaster workout with some harcore 15 minute ab routine thrown in at the end - all of this...with a sweatshirt on! So naturally I am just pouring sweat from underneath my weave cap and my tracks get pretty soaked with sweat (ew?). What's worse, is that I usually work out at night, around 8pm so I usually only have two hours to let my tracks dry before I go to bed and they are usually still damp anyway. It's a hassle to say the least - I am scared to wake up with an inescapable smell of mildew! In any case I try to combat this by washing my hair every 4 to 5 days. The only problem with this is I have to do this early in the morning before work (like five hours before) or on a weekday morning because it takes about an hour to hour and half for your tracks to try using a hooded dryer. The more hair you have sewn to your hair the longer it supposedly takes. I don't see any way to mitigate track wetness unless I just give up on working out hardcore all together. Any suggestions would be welcome!

Weave Chronicles: Day 12

So it has been about 12 days since I had my first weave installed and I have to say I am more upbeat and positive about it! Maybe because the cornrows have loosened up and I actually got to wash my hair this past weekend which felt sinfully amazing! Cool water going in and out of my cornrows, followed by some diluted shampoo I put in between my tracks with an applicator – lets just say I definitely paid more attention to my hair underneath than what was sewn on top. I did follow up with a deep conditioner because I want to keep my hair underneath as healthy as possible! Unfortunately I forgot the type of conditioner I use I think is tailored more for thicker and coarser hair types to provide intense softening and conditioning – it actually took me longer to wash it out of the weaved in hair than I was expecting.

After about an hour of sitting under a hooded hair dryer to dry my tracks as much as possible (I’m so scared about getting a scalp infection/moldy hair after what my hair stylist told me about wet tracks!), I really liked the light beach waves effect of the hair after it was dried. I liked it even better than the straightened hair style!!! For one I don’t have to worry about re-straightening my bangs every time I work out at the gym! I also found that it suited my personality better because I am rather a fan of more volume and of course natural waves and curls – even if it’s not the real hair on my head that is naturally wavy! :P

 

My First Hair Weave Experience!

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*breathe* *breathe* <pop an advil> *breathe again* That was sort of my mantra as I got my first full head hair weave "installed" this past weekend. It was no picnic for my body nor my wallet. 8 hours in the chair and almost $500 out of my wallet. small little bumps cropping up near my cornrows and soreness on the top of my head. Is it all complaints? In the beginning yes, but after the soreness fades away, the advil finally stowed away in the medicine cabinet and the end of the month pay day makes you feel better about your funds, its not half bad at all! especially when faced with the prospect of not having to fret over your real hair for essentially the next 2 to 3 months!

My first impressions? Well I have to say I admire ladies who do this all year around for most of their lives because it took a toll on me mentally and physically. Then again my hairdresser might be more of a perfectionist when it comes to doing hair while I saw other hair dressers do three to five weaves during my one session there! It might also be that full head weaves take a little bit more time since none of my real hair was being used/exposed.

I really enjoy being able to use a hot iron over and over again on the hair without using a heat protectant and without having to worry about the safety and damages heat can do to my hair! yay! I became really elated when I pressed my bangs this morning after working out and i heard that dreaded hissing noise from the dampness still on the hair and I was like, "oh well! at least its not my hair suffering!".

I do find myself wondering if people notice that I am wearing a weave and then I begin to not care knowing that people think I have some sort of hair extensions when I get my hair pressed! It doesn't really make a difference in this day in age when enhancements in the body, eye lashes, lips, breasts, butts, etc are just apart of typical everyday life now.

I do miss a simple pony-tail to get the hair off the back of my neck (especially when working out). I miss not having bangs on my forehead when I am washing my face and exercising.

I love having glamour-ready hair to go out on the town with (not worried about manipulating some 3 week old twists into a club banger hairstyle lol). I love not fretting over wasting money on a press and curl when I want to dance or go work out; now I can just go do it then press it all over again without worrying about breakage of my own hair.

Before I got my first weave this weekend, I googled some stories/background advice about what to expect/what is done when you get a full head weave and there was not much information out there. So I just wanted to give an idea of how the process went to install my weave for those interested in getting a weave for the first time or don't really know how it's done:

I got blow dryed out after a lengthy shampooing and conditioning (including a deep conditioning) - all of this was in preparation for my hair to be essentially stuck under a cap for the next several months.

Cornrowed up. I am red in the face only because my scalp is so white lol. Definitely the most painful/uncomfortable part of the whole experience. Don't let my smile fool ya.

Then a net/mesh cap was sewn onto my head. This apparently helps with not only the extensions not being sewn onto you actual tracks but also to keep the weave in place while your hair is continuing to grow under the weave.

Some of the first tracks installed. It actually started to look like my actual hair when it is pressed out oddly enough lol.

After most of the hair is installed.Almost finished. I wanted bangs with a peak. I was still unsatisfied with the length, so I went for shorter.

And the final look! I plan on changing the hair style two more times before I finally take it out, I want to go extra short with a tapered back like I always wanted but never dared to do with my real hair. I will continue to keep you updated about my first weave experience!

The Weave! Friend or Foe to Natural Hairlistas?

So I was tempted to write a review about my favorite deep conditioner today but I was more excited at the moment of composing this post about something else - something many people consider the anti-thesis and arch nemesis of natural hair, the self-identity destroyer, the bank robber - the weave... When some friends and I put together everythingcurly.com we made it with the intention of not only celebrating natural hair and natural products but to also acknowledge the diversity of textures and styles natural hair can embody.

I have been natural all my life and it has not been easy as an ex-swimmer with 4a and 4b classified hair. Chlorine, sun exposure, and general negligence wreaked havoc on my poor hair most of my life (I am 25 now). Not only did the volume of my hair decrease but I was the dreaded once a year, 5 hour in the salon chair client, with the beautician tirelessly cutting away at 4 inches of splits ends. The strenuous academic schedule I endured cut down on time that I actually spent thinking about when and how I should care for my hair (I sometimes would wash my hair once every two weeks after swimming everyday in the sun for 14 days! eek!).

In recent years I have come to understand the importance of caring for the strands I have left on my head. I understand that I am not going to be one of those people who wake up in the morning run a comb through it and go on my merry way. Natural hair or any hair care for that matter takes time, energy, and sometimes some extra bicep strength to comb through those back kitchen parts.

You would think after reading this personal story, how can this be a post having to do with anything about weaves?! I am actually wondering that myself lol. What started as a "excited to share post" has evolved into more of a personal reflection which is necessary to understand my position on weaves. My ultimate philosophy in life is "Do whatever makes you happy" long as it doesn't endanger you or others around you. This philosophy also applies to weaves despite what critics have to say about how some women have their identity and whole being wrapped up in what is sewed on their head and flowing down their back. Although that might be true of some unfortunate souls who are "slaves" to the weave and equate self-confidence and beauty with their hair - for those of us that aren't concerned with that, there is no harm in trying a weave out! Which is exactly what I am doing!

While talking with the my beautician today as she was blow drying and trimming my ends, I confessed how I always wanted to rock an awesome, halle berry inspired, edgy, swaggerific, attitude-toting, short hair cut. She was kind of confounded about what was stopping me and I was equally as confused as well. I can do anything with my hair if I want to spend the time, energy and sometimes the $$$ to make it happen! I felt so empowered not because I was scheduled to get my first weave, but because I now had the time, energy, and a little mullah to do what every makes me and my tresses happy.

Check out some of the styles I am running through my head below!