Monday, February 26, 2018

Wash Day For The Lazy Naturalista

My stash of products.
In July, I will be 3 years Natural,3 whole years,no blow dries,no flat irons,no salon visits, just me and my curls/kinks and loads of learning on what my hair wants and celebrating small hair wins.In the natural hair community,because we are very organised people,we all have hair goals and my one hair goal is length,the sub-goal under this being healthy hair that is always moisturized.Let me tell you a little story about female culture in my society, when you visit your friends and family just as you are about to leave they offer you hair perfume and when you leave based on the level of maturity of your hosts they will comment about your hair 😂😂,because I am very vain I want my hair to dazzle each and everyone of my hosts, basically my mum and sister but still,dazzle I must hope to.

First things first,there is no such thing as a lazy naturalista because natural hair is time consuming and hardwork, but if you are a naturalista and love effective short-cuts like me then with time you make regimes that aren't too hard but are very effective and efficient. When I first went natural I didn't fully understand what it entailed and I thought it would be much easier than having permed hair, because I kept on reading how all new naturalistas enjoyed washing their hair as they showered,oh the bliss. As expected of all new things one tries I spent a tonne of money on products and time trying to do hair routines and styles.Two and half years later I have my routines down and such a small stash of products that I love and work for me.If you are a new naturalista or one with no hair regime and are looking for an easy one, look no further.

I wash my hair every other Saturday because I found that washing my hair every Saturday wasn't working for me as my hair is a ' dense rain forest' and takes forever to dry. One of the most important things to do is to decide how often you will be washing your hair,once you have this down below is the easiest of wash day..................................

Rice water.

Rice water-the hair growth miracle worker.
As we now all know I want long hair.Through online research I found out that rice water assists in hair growth and is what is responsible for the Yao women's hair and from the pictures I saw online,this stuff is the business!. On the Friday mornings before wash day, I make my rice water. I put 1 cup of clean rice and 2 cups of water in a bowl and mix them with my hands until the mixture is as milky as possible and then I cover it. This cloudy white liquid contains some powerful vitamins and minerals which are an excellent source of nourishment for your skin and hair.


The pre-poo tools.
On the Friday evening before wash day, I do my pre-poo. Pre-pooing your hair is very important as it shields your hair from the dryness that shampoos can cause and provides the much needed moisture boost for your tresses. I use both conditioner and oil for this.First I wet my hair until it's upto 50% wet then I oil it and finally I apply a generous amount of conditioner.I then put it in 4-6 two strand twists,put on a plastic cap and my bonnet and because it's Friyaay, I pour myself a cup of tea and watch Khloe's Revenge Body.I use the Suave Naturals tropical coconut conditioner and coconut oil for my pre-poo.


The shampoos that are currently in my stash.
The key to hair growth is a clean scalp and therefore on each wash day I shampoo my hair.Despite all the support for co-washes, I stopped doing them when I read somewhere that doing a co-wash is the same as showering with lotion instead of soap and thinking that you will get clean!. To ensure I don't harm my hair; I dilute my shampoo so as to reduce it's moisture stripping effects,I mostly use sulphate free shampoos and those that have moisturizing properties.

The trick to shampooing is to start with the scalp, once it's clean use the run-off from the scalp for the hair strands.When shampooing I thoroughly massage my scalp as this improves blood flow in the scalp and this is said to help with hair growth.I have been loving the Dark and Lovely Au Naturale Moisture Replenishing Shampoo,Dove's Nourishing oil care and TRESemme Smooth and Silky Moroccan Argan Oil Shampoo.

    Lowkey showing off my tassle earings(ok maybe not low-key,how pretty are they?!!).
    After rinsing out all the shampoo,I condition my hair and I love love the TRESemme climate protect conditioner.I use a generous amount and de-tangle my hair with the conditioner in it.I always use a wide-tooth comb to detangle.Since TRESemme isn't exactly cheap, I have been in the market for good quality but pocket friendly conditioners and I am happy to report, the Dark and lovely Au Naturale Knot out conditioner is really good and pocket friendly too,especially because I got mine a while back when they were on sale(50% off!!).

    Deep Condition or protein treatment

    My favourite deep conditioner and protein treatment.
    Deep conditioning is important because it helps prevent damage,helps promote hair elasticity,restores natural shine and most importantly it keeps your hair moisturized. Protein treatments on the other hand are needed because they contain proteins that attach to your hair in the areas that are weak to help strengthen the hair. These proteins hardens the cuticle layer of your hair, and also puts a protective barrier around the hair.

    I protein treat my hair after every 6 weeks and deep conditioner every 2 weeks.After I finish conditioning my hair if it's a day for deep conditioning I do not rinse off the conditioner, I apply my deep conditioner on top of it,put on my plastic cap and satin kitambaa and do things around the house for 30-45 minutes and then I rinse it off completely.Same applies for the days I do protein treatment the only difference is on these days I rinse my conditioner off before applying the protein treatment.I have only really used the ORS deep conditioner and hair mayonnaise, many tabs later I can confirm they are really good and my hair loves them.

    Rice water

    After either deep conditioning or protein treatment, I rinse my hair clean, squeeze off as much water as possible and using a spray bottle soak my hair with rice water.I then put on my plastic cap and leave it on for half an hour.Then I do a final rinse with cold water. Cold water, I have learned, works on your hair the same way it does on your skin. When you wash your face, it's suggested that you rinse with cool water, as the chill contracts your pores, making them appear smaller. When it comes to your hair, cold water helps to seal your hair cuticle, making it lay smoothly. A smoother hair cuticle better reflects light, giving your hair the appearance of shine.It also closes the hair cuticle, sealing in moisture that you applied to your hair through-out the wash day.

    I am mostly done with my wash-day by mid-day and I spend an hour in the evening oiling my hair and sometimes I plait it. Ladies, what tricks do you use to make wash-day shorter, which products do you love the most and why? I would love to know.

    Sunday, February 18, 2018

    We are going to need more wine-book review

    The lady showing off her book.
    We are going to need more wine is a memoir.It's Gabrielle Union's memoir and she bares it all.The book as she says in the introduction is akin to sitting with her at dinner as she tells you about her life.It's a revelation of sorts,through reading the book you feel like you know her and some of her deepest secrets. The book is a series of essays/chapters and each chapter covers different things ranging from the dangers of being black in America,beauty standards,being a woman and the many struggles that come with that,being a black actress and the stereotypes that mostly see her and other black actresses getting certain roles,Prince(the late singer),her marriages/relationships and other really personal stories.Some of the chapters I couldn't finish quickly enough because they bored me!! and some of the chapters I enjoyed reading.The chapters I loved the most are: black woman blues,grown-ass-woman blues and a tale of two martinezes.

    In this book of revelations, I have learnt so much about her that I feel if I met her, I would know her as herself and not as Mary Jane Paul .In the spirit of no spoilers and keeping it short and sweet these are some of the things I have learnt about her.

    She went to an all white school and wanted to fit in so bad

    Her parents wanted a better life for them(her and her sister) and they therefore went to an all white school and lived in predominantly white neighbourhoods.This came with it's challenges as at one point she was the only black girl in her school and had teenage problems, in that she wanted white boys to like her and as I realise now it is taboo for white boys to love black girls.She did some really out of character things to win this affection and ended up making her worst enemy through high school boy drama.

    She was raped!

    'Group therapy is the only place I could feel 'not crazy'. I was around other young people with the same stresses I have,the same fears and triggers.You know that feeling you get when somebody first rubs your feet? It's like a jolt through you whole body,then an instant exhale.Each time we met I exhaled.Because when you've been raped,you really feel like you are on an island.Rape is the most underreported crime there is. And it's shrouded in secrecy and shame.'

    She was raped just before she started college.She worked in a store and a thief raped her.This thief robbed the store she was working in at the time and instead of walking away with his loot decided to do the despicable.This as expected has caused her lots of pain and anxiety even into her adult life.

    Her first marriage was real bad.

    'Have you ever had a dream where you're in a car and you're heading right for a wall? You're trying to hit the brakes,but you speed closer and closer to your doom? Well, you are cordially invited to my first wedding.'

    Gabrielle Union has had a lot of bad relationships!!! who knew, even beautiful rich actresses are scared of being single and would do anything to be either married or in a serious relationship.Her first marriage was so bad that despite her paying for everything and even giving her then husband money to set-up an office and run his business, he cheated on her.

    She lost her best friend to cancer

    'I returned to Sook and again asked her what she wanted her legacy to be.What message she wanted me to carry on.'I want you to tell people that fear can kill you', Sook said.'I was afraid and it killed me.'

    Gabrielle Union's friend died from cancer.Fear held her from visiting a hospital to get a diagnosis when she felt a lump in her breast because she feared that it might be cancer.When she finally went to a hospital, it was stage 4 cancer and the doctors could not do anything to save her 😢😢.

    She has a female cousin called Kenyatta

    'We'( me,myself and I) have this joke on how naming of kids has become so dramatic these days and how new parents try to out do each other in getting unique names for their kids.Apparently this didn't start the other day.Gabrielle Union has a female cousin called Kenyatta (Yes,FEMALE). I wonder what she says when she explains the meaning of her name to people,when they ask where she gets her name from.

    She has insecurities!

    'You are really pretty for a dark-skinned girl: Through God all things are possible,and it's even possible that He sometimes makes dark-skinned women who aren't ugly.Somehow, some way, I escaped the curse of my melanin and Afrocentric features to become a credit to my skin tone.'

    From this book I learnt that being a black dark-skinned woman in Hollywood is a BAD thing as it's really difficult to get good roles irrespective of how good you are as an actress.Light skin is considered beautiful and people who are 'fortunate' to have it are considered the lucky ones 😂😂,this is the truth even here,that's why skin bleaching is so rampant,especially among young females. Also black people living in rich neighbourhoods are viewed as suspect.This one time because she lives in white rich neighbourhoods and had to go to the gym,she decided to wear expensive mittens(rich people problems) as she walked to the gym so as to ensure nobody mistakes her for anything else.

    She met her current husband through Prince.

    Prince, when he was alive,organised these parties,invite only parties,where he invited the top cream in the entertainment industry,black entertainers.In one of these parties she met Dwayne Wade's brothers,In the same party she met him and talked to him for the first time(I think) and the rest as they say is history

    Being Mary Jane-Season 1 Episode 1-because of this book I have officially joined the Being Mary Jane bandwagon
    If you are a fan of hers or just want to know about colourism, racism, Hollywood struggles,a lot of woman related struggles, just muchene on her life or you have time to kill, you should definitely read it.

    Truth be told I am done reading memoirs and autobiographies of celebrities because I now find it pointless.This year my goal is to learn from what I read, hello!! self-help books and books by women in leadership.

    Thursday, February 8, 2018

    What's for breakfast? Somalia Edition.

    Anjera, is what it's mostly all about.

    Somalis are a breakfast people, they understand eat like a king in the morning,like a non-royal person at lunch and like a person on a diet in the evening.This could be the secret as to why most of them have model like bodies.

    Anjero is a staple food in Somalia and it’s the most common breakfast food. One of the memories that I have from when I lived in Somalia (7 months ago 😃) is; every night after the Maghrib salah, you will hear rhythmic sounds of slapping, the sound of mixing the anjero batter and sometimes I try and make the same sound mixing flour but never have I ever achieved it.

    Usually they will have tea and anjera for breakfast.The Somali anjera is delicious!! not to be confused with the Ethiopian injera because they are different, it is less sour,smaller in size and doesn't contain teff flour.The traditional Ethiopian injera is usually fermented for a couple of days, whereas the Somali anjero is fermented just overnight.The anjero would be sprinkled with some sugar and drizzled with a little sesame oil, melted ghee or vegetable oil.Loads of people have it with tea. For those who can afford it, in addition to tea, the anjero is served with fried liver and onions, with suqaar (small pieces of beef) or any kind of meat stew.

    Last week I was in Garowe and decided to be adventurous and have everything on the breakfast menu :-) :-). The place I stayed had 4 items on this menu and in no particular order the breakfast foods are;

    Oats and tea because really, does it count as breakfast if it doesn't include a hot beverage.
    Oats are commonly known as porridge in the Somali circles and even at my home we call it porridge.This one time I was telling my sister how I am now on a diet and will be having oats every morning and she says, 'but is oats really better than bread,lactating mothers have loads of oats porridge so as to get enough breast milk,it can't be a slimming food 😂😂 '. Oats  are what I have on most days for breakfast, maybe this is the reason I am just becoming bigger and bigger.

    First day,I was there I had oats and tea because I was sticking with the familiar.Their oats are served with 'honey'(a syrup that looks and even smells like honey) and milk.If one is watching what they are eating, this will be a good choice.The tea was

    Anjero iyo beer
    The heartiest of breakfast-fried liver,anjera and cappucino
    This is a favourite of a lot of people and for good reason.It's delicious to eat and very filling, if one has this you will be good to go until four in the afternoon.If anyone one is looking to try one of the Somali breakfasts dishes I highly recommend this. I had my anjero iyo beer with a cappucino. In addition to trying everything on the breakfast menu, I also decided to try all the hot drinks.I don't know much about coffee but this tasted a lot like tea.


    Eggs :-) :-)
    Eggs are a staple for many people when it comes to breakfast and increasingly I see a lot of people having hard boiled eggs(atleast online). The eggs served were only of one kind, fried eggs that have onions and tomatoes and they are served with roti. I didn't mind this but I didn't like it too much either.


    Peas for breakfast? who knew?
    When I heard they had beans, I was so so happy because I thought they have to be canned beans, as this is Garowe and no way it will be the usual beans(boiled and fried), if they are canned beans they must be those canned beans that I so love. I was so wrong as they actually are canned peas and tasted horrible.I think what made it worse is I was so excited about it and had these expectations of what it would be.Surprisingly I saw a lot of people having it so maybe it is just me. I had the 'beans with the kafee (coffee) and the kafee is espresso with loads of milk, if something like that exists.

    What do you love having for breakfast? me I love: bread, blueband and HOT tea, this combo will be the end of me and my waist line.