My Makeover Experience With Beautiful Textures Hair Care

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This past Saturday I was invited, along with six other beauty bloggers in Atlanta, to participate in the Beautiful Textures Salon Experience at Drexina Nelson Private Salon in downtown Atlanta. 

Beautiful Textures is a natural hair care line who just launched three new products in their collection; the Curl Definer Mousse, Curl Definer Styling Custard, and Edges to Ends Silkener. The line is designed to meet the hair care needs of multicultural customers with curly, wavy, kinky-coily and frizzy hair patterns.

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(**DISCLAIMER: I apologize for the “self taken photos”. I clearly need a photographer or friend to take photos for better quality photos. But you get the gist…)

During our experience we got a first hand look at the new products and a chance to play around with them. But my favorite part of this experience was our complimentary makeover! What girl doesn’t enjoy a great makeover? 

First step was the official “before” photo so we could really see the results from the products. Next, was over to the shampoo bowl where they used their Tangle Taming Moisturizing Shampoo and leave-in Conditioner. The products smell sooooo good and the conditioner has a little tingle to it which I love (because it gives me this feeling that it’s “working”) lol. 

I was most concerned about how to control frizz when wearing a wash-and-go style, so my stylist decided to focus on my strands using the Curl Definer Mousse and a touch of the Moisture Butter Whipped Curl Créme to give my curls some hydration. She did a coil twist on my damp hair and sat me under the dryer for about 45 minutes.

Beautiful Textures had a film crew come out and shoot our experience in the salon. Here are some snapshots of fellow bloggers during their hair experiences as well.

After I got out from under the dreadful dryer, my stylist took my curls apart with a little bit of the moisture butter on her fingertips and gently pieced apart the coils. I headed over to get my makeup touched up by a professional makeup artist and finished up my experience with my official “after” photo taken by the photographer in the studio.

I loved my makeup too! 

Aaaannndddd it’s a wrap! Here’s a look at my professional before and after photos! I saw a huge difference with the frizz and definition of my curls. Surprisingly, the products gave my color a nice little pop as well!

Thank you Beautiful Textures and Drexina Nelson Private Salon for the Beautiful Textures Salon experience! For more information on the products, you can visit their website here.

What do you think about my makeover? Do you see the difference?

What Products Do I Use? Here’s What Made The Cut

Whenever ladies ask me about products I would recommend to them to make their natural hair journey a little smoother, I always respond with the same answer … “I can tell you what personally works for me, but you are going to go through trial and error.” I say this because every product does not work for everyone’s hair type and texture. Your friends curls could be poppin and voluminous everyday, but if her texture is finer than yours, then every product she uses may not be right for you

Now, because I’m a Beauty Blogger, there are few products that I am loyal to. I love to try whatever is new, and some products work out for the long haul, and others may get a review but seldom used again.

Lately I’ve been on a pretty consistent routine with my current go-to’s being used in heavy rotation. I wanted to share with you ladies what I’m using at the moment so you can see what I use to keep my curls soft, defined, and moisturized.

With that said, I’m sure you catch my drift, so here it goes!

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(L to R) Design Essentials Natural  Curl Cleanser Sulfate Free Shampoo, CLEAR Scalp and Hair Therapy Ultra Shea Shampoo, Pantene Natural Clarifying Shampoo 

My hair stylist has been telling me lately that I need to invest in professional products to use on my hair. So for you ladies who want to go in the same direction, Design Essentials is a good line. For those who are a little more budget conscious, CLEAR and the Pantene Natural line are what I use as well. A product that isn’t pictured that I also use and like is the Mixed Chicks Sulfate Free shampoo. If you have color in your hair, then sulfate free shampoo is what you need too look for to keep you color fresh and make it last!

(L to R) CLEAR Scalp & Hair Therapy Ultra Shea Condition, Mixed Chicks Deep Conditioner, Mixed Chicks Leave-In Conditioner

Conditioning is everything when it comes to natural hair! You ever heard anyone say, “Ooo her dry, frizzy curls are cute!” ? Yea, me either lol. Now this is an area where I’m actually loyal to a couple of products. The Mixed Chicks deep conditioner and leave-in are my go-to’s I’ve been using for a couple of years now. I use a leave-in everyday … especially since I have color! My curls are thirsty a lot, so there’s no such thing as ODing when it involves conditioner. Another product not pictured that I also love and need to use more often is the Huetiful Hair Steamer («— click on the link to check out my review). You can purchase all of these products at Target.

(L to R) Dark & Lovely Au Naturale 10-in-1 Gel, Dr. Miracle Curl Care Strong Hold Gel, Twisted Sista Curl Activator

Ok ladies, now when it comes to styling, this is the area where I am ALWAYS trying new products. But I do have three favorites that have yet to do me wrong and those are pictured above. When using a gel, I look for something that defines my curls but doesn’t flake and doesn’t make my curls hard! I usually like to mix the gel with my leave-in conditioner and a moisturizer and finger comb it through my damp hair, then do my two-strand twist. Around the sides and back, I’ll apply either a little gel or just my leave-in conditioner and finger twist it. The Twisted Sista Curl Activator is more of a cream, and it keeps my curls voluminous with a soft definition!

(L to R) Biosilk Silk Therapy Hair Serum, Elasta QP Olive Oil & Mango Butter Moisturizer 

You can’t forget about giving a little extra TLC to your strands. For shine I go for a light hair serum that I apply with my fingertips as I take out my two-strand twist in the morning. Another great option is Paul Mitchell Skinny Serum (plus it smells yummy). I use the Mango Butter in two ways: by itself, as I take my twist out, when it’s really dry, or mixed with my leave-in and the gel, then applied all over for extra moisture. 

(L to R) Carol’s Daughter Monoi Repairing Split End Sealer, a wide tooth comb, Eden Body Works Peppermint Tea Tree Oil 

We all have to have those little extras that make a difference with our curls. One of my favorite combo’s is mixing the CD Monoi Sealer with the Mixed Chicks leave-in and the EQP Mango Butter …. omg the smell is orgasmic! I wish my hair would hold the smell all day! I use my wide tooth comb to comb my deep conditioner through my hair while in the shower. I try to limit frequent combing with the comb and alternate by finger combing because I’ve found that it eliminates more frizz. I’ll use the peppermint tea tree oil on my scalp after I’ve twisted my hair up and massage it into my scalp. I love the tingle feeling! 

That’s it ladies! Like I said before, your journey will consist of trial and error. My best advice is to BE PATIENT and keep trying. If at all possible, see if you can try out a sample packet or have a sales person make you a sample before you commit to a product. I understand that most natural hair products aren’t “cheap” and fellow product junkies like myself may not have anymore space for new items. Stores like Target have lenient return policies as long as you have your receipt. Good luck!

Natural Hair, Skin, & Style Questions Answered From Readers

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Hey guys! Thanks for tuning in and asking for advice! I’m more than happy to help and I thought it would be easier to answer some of your questions from this week all together. So, here it goes!

"Hi doll! Do you use heat rollers?"

No maam.

"Hi I totally love your hair it’s so beautiful I been natural for 5 years now but would straighten it often, which resulted it to have heat damage since then I haven’t applied any heat to my hair. I’ve been getting so bored of my natural hair colour that I really want to get it highlighted similar to your hair colour or have my entire hair dyed black which one would be the best decision for my hair?" 

Thank youuu! Well I don’t know what you or your hair looks like to give you a proper suggestion lol, but I say if you prefer to wear your hair straight, then dye it black. I did a black rinse on my hair for years and it gave my hair a lot of recovery time to be nice, shiny, and healthy. I’m also totally down for color (obviously lol), so start with some subtle highlights and say no to heat for a while. It’s also really important to go to a stylist that takes extra good care of your hair whether colored or not! Deep conditioners and leave-in conditioners should be your best friend when wearing it natural (one my favorites lines for conditions is Mixed Chicks). Good luck! 

"You are so gorgeous I love your haircut so beautiful ! I want to know what products do you use for your beautiful flawless skin ?" 

Why thank ya lovely :) See this post and this post and this post for what I faithfully use to take my makeup off err day. 

"Hi!! What’s your ethnicity?" 

Hi! I’m African American :) 

"What would you suggest wearing to your bestfriend’s college graduation? The ceremony will be outdoors, in low 70 to high 80 degree weather." 

I would go for a nice easy breezy sundress and strappy sandals and take a cardigan or scarf in case it’s a little chilly. Always better to be safe than sorry. I would also do a pair of high waist trousers and a chic blouse and heels. Simple and effortless is always the best way to go. For some affordable options, check out Forever21, Zara, H&M, or TJ Maxx :)

"Hey Gorgeous! I am 23 with oily/acne prone skin. Do you have any suggestions for a good oil free moisturizer to apply under my foundation?"

Hey there gorgeous :) I’ve been using Olay Complete Moisturizer with spf 15 and Cetaphil Daily Facial Moisturizer with spf 15 for years and it’s never done me wrong. Check out this post and this post on how to get maximum usage out of your moisturizer. I have combination/oily skin so they should work for you too! 

"I’m so in love with your hair! It looks so healthy. Which products do you use and how often ? Do you sleep with a cap or something or do you leave it like that ? Xx"

Ahhhh, I use so many products! lol But some products that I’m loyal to is Mixed Chicks leave-in conditioner. I use it all over after I wash my hair and I use it to refresh my hair in the back and on the sides pretty much every day. For the top of my hair I switch it up and do a two-strand twist every other night using either Dark & Lovely Au Naturale 10-in-1 Gelée, Twisted Sista Curl Activator, or Dr. Miracle Curl Care Strong Hold Gel. For moisture I’ve been using Carol’s Daughter Monoi Split End Sealer (after I wash my hair), and I’ll mix in Elasta QP’s Olive Oil & Mango Butter Moisturizer with one of the styling products I mentioned. For shine, I use a little Paul Mitchell Skinny Serum as I take my two strand twist out every day. Yes, that was a lot lol. 

"Hello McKenzie! I’m new to your blog, tried to find your everyday makeup routine/products but no luck. I would say you and I are around the same complextion. I was wondering if you would share with me your products for your daily makeup routine. Thanks in advance! Shakira"

Hi Shakira, I’ll do an updated post on that for you ;) 

"Hi, I would like to know about your professional color. Is the blonde in the front growing out or did you purposely highlight the front? I am taking your blog to the salon with me (ha!) so I can give my stylist some ideas of what I want. Please let me know. Thanks! BrownFace" 

Hi BrownFace :) Because I’ve colored my hair so much, a lot of the look is from the grown out process and I just add to it (that’s why it turns into custom color). Recently I had the tips highlighted a little more to give me more blonde. 

**I’ll do this more often for you guys so I can try to get everyone’s questions answered! Don’t be scurred to send pics so I can see exactly what you’re talking about ;) (I have to do these awkward watermarks now because of picture theft! You understand lol)


Happy Birthday curlBOX!

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It’s finally here!!! ::Jumps in the air for joy:: I’ve been telling you guys about the super special February birthday curlBOX and it’s finally here! 

Why is it super special to me? Well not only is curlBOX celebrating all of its amazing success in this past year by turning one, but they asked me to be on the cover of the curlBOX magazine for this exciting moment! 

Now this box was promised to deliver awesomness … and awesome is an understatement. The birthday box is bigger than ever including five very full sized products to please your precious strands!

Don’t get it? Here is this months box (left) next to a normal sized monthly box (right)…

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Now, let’s get to it and see what’s inside! Ahhhh!!!

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First up, these big a** PANTENE bottles!!! One thing I absolutely love about having a curlBOX subscription, is that I’m introduced to all of these new products to try on my curls for just $20 a month. I don’t know if I’ve been in the dark, but I didn’t know Pantene Pro-V had a “Truly Natural Hair” line. Did you? See, this is why I appreciate curlBOX. I received four full sized bottles from the Truly Natural line including:

-Clarifying Shampoo
-Deep Conditioner
-Co-wash Cleansing Conditioner
-Defining Curls Styling Custard (I used this right after opening the box lol and love the way my curls look. I promise to do a separate review on this later). 

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Next up, Dark & Lovely has some new products up their sleeve as well with their Au Natural Anti-Shrinkage Line! Here is what I received:

- 10-in-1 Styles Gelée with Mango Oil & Bamboo Milk
- A sample packet of the Coil Moisturizing Soufflé
- A sample packet of the Curl Defining Creme Glaze
BONUS: A sample packet of the Hair Rules Quench Ultra Rich Conditioner & (pictured above) a coupon for $2 off the Creme of Nature with Argan Oil line. 

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I can’t wait to give these products a go! I will definitely be sure to report back to you ladies on what I love!

Now, on to the magazine and letter from the Editor!

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Let me tell you something about the curlBOX founder Myleik Teele. She is one of the hardest working women I’ve ever met and I remember the first time I met her, something about her spirit made me gravitate towards her. I’m so happy for her and all of the success she’s had with curlBOX, and most of all how she’s made a difference in the lives of curly girls everywhere! I mean, who was doing this before she was? We all owe her a HUGE THANK YOU!

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In the “Letter from the Editor”, Myleik shares some key things she’s taken away from her own personal journey with curlBOX.

1. Never stop learning. "Books can take you from one way of thinking into another realm, changing your life by changing your thoughts."

2. Run your own race— there’s enough room for each of us! One of her favorite quotes is from Oscar Wilde: “Be yourself, everyone else is taken.”

3. Myleik shares, "I hope the images you see on our curlBLOG, Instagram, and Facebook pages show you a vision of textured hair that can’t be defined. There’s enough space for each of us to do our thing and for us to continue to introduce you to all the new brands designed with YOUR unique texture in mind."

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I want to thank Myleik and curlBOX for letting me be apart of this awesome opportunity! 

Keep doing it for the fly girls!!


FYI: If you weren’t able to get your February subscription, the list is opening back up tomorrow (Saturday, February 16th) at 3pm EST for Volume 2 of the birthday box. Do not play, because last time the list was closed within an hour. At 3pm, go to http://shop.curlbox.com/ and get it crackin! 

For more behind-the-scenes pictures from the photo shoot, revisit this post :)

Product Review: November curlBOX

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Ok if you don’t have a curlBOX, you’re losing. CurlBOX has provided me with one of the easiest outlets to sampling various natural hair products, without having to spend a fortune along the way (just $20 a month). 

So naturally, I put a couple of the November curlBOX products to use in my recent wash-and-go style. I tried out the Curl Care by Dr. Miracle Strong Hold Gel, and Clear Scalp Hair & Therapy Ultra Shea shampoo and conditioner.

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My scalp has been a little itchy and dry due to the weather. The Clear shampoo felt very refreshing against my scalp and the conditioner gave my curls that winter bounce back.

Let me tell you, I used to be sooooo anti-gel because I hated that it left my hair hard and crunchy and often times flaky. But the Strong Hold Gel gave me instant results as soon as I applied it to my strands from roots to ends! It left my hair with no frizz, no flakes and extra definition while still keeping my coils soft. Changed my little mind right on around ;)

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Finally, having a great blow dryer with the right attachments is key in getting great results with your hair (whether wearing it curly or straight). To set my style, I used my Hana air blow dryer with a diffuser attachment. The diffuser has controlled air flow and is used to set my curls while preventing frizz. Ladies, this is a must-have for a great wash-and-go style!

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Here are the results after I finger twisted my strands using the strong hold gel and set my curls with the diffuser.

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And here is an extra close up.

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Thanks curlBOX :)

Any of you ladies have any secrets you want to share on how to achieve the perfect wash-and-go style? Fill me in!

Two-Strand Twist Out Using New Products

Ok loves, I posted this on my Instagram but also wanted to share with you ladies on le blog on some of the new products I’ve been using for my two-strand twist out.

I tried a mixture of products this time from Carol’s Daughter, Mixed Chicks, and Twisted Sista and I was very pleased with the results!

Here’s what I used:

1. Eden Natural Hair Oil in Peppermint Tea Tree (got in my curlBOX subscription).
2. Twisted Sista Curl Activator Cream (can be found at Walmart)
3. Mixed Chicks Deep Conditioner (can be found at Target)
4. Carol’s Daughter Black Vanilla Sulfate-free Shampoo (can be found online)
5. Carol’s Daughter Black Vanilla Leave-In Conditioner (can be found online)

Ahhh unruly brows! lol jk

So here’s what I did … my technique hasn’t changed too much from when I first showed you my twist out back in my blonde days. Maybe just a tad bit bigger sections.

I washed my hair with the Carol’s Daughter Black Vanilla shampoo (which smells amazing btw and also didn’t leave that “too-squeaky clean” feeling on my strands). Then I followed up with my favorite deep conditioner by Mixed Chicks and left it on for about 10 minutes and rinsed. After washing and conditioning, I gently dabbed by hair with a towel, and sprayed the Carol’s Daughter Black Vanilla leave-in conditioner generously in my hair. Followed that up with my Twisted Sista Curl Activator and again applied a generous amount to the top part (the longest) and a little bit on the sides and back. 

After gently finger combing the products through my hair, I take about 1-1/2 inch sections, separate it, then twist it all the way to the end. I do this on just the areas of my head where the hair is longest. Just for a little extra TLC and scalp love, I sprayed the Eden’s Natural Peppermint Hair Oil on a few open scalp areas and massaged it in with my fingers. Tingly hehe

Pop a bonnet on and go to sleep …. eight hours later, I gently unravel the twists with a little bit of serum on my fingertips to give it a little extra shine and to control any frizz. If you find that you’re hair isn’t all the way dry, take a diffuser and hit the spots that are still damp, then take the twists out.

Here’s the finished product….I’m happy :)

I want to hear about some of your favorite products you use to two-strand twist your hair … or your favorite products in general! Leave them in the comments so I can check them out :)

xoxo

Product Review: Carol’s Daughter New Hair Milk Collection

I havn’t tried any Carol’s Daughter products since they came out with the original hair milk (the one with the cow print on the bottle). So I was equally excited to try her revamped Hair Milk Collection.

The new Hair Milk is said to "infuse every hair texture with moisture and shine without weighing it down, helping curls, coils and more maintain their shape and the perfect shine all day."

This time, I tried the entire system at once consisting of the Pudding, Leave-in Moisturizer, Co-Wash, and Hair Smoothie, and boy have things changed.

The scent for one is much more appealing (I’m not a big fan of citrus or lemon scents). My curls were definitely soft and kept a nice shine throughout the day, but were still just a tad frizzy in some sections. 


Here is what my hair looked like the next morning after using the products and two strand twisting my hair throughout the night. I think next time, I’ll see what it looks like with just a wash-and-go style.

What’s in the recipe?

The products are infused with agave nectar, cocoa and shea butters, pro-vitamin B5, soybean, wheat germ, avocado oils, and guar gum. 

How much is it?

- Co-Wash Cleansing Conditioner (8.5 fl oz): $18
- Original Leave-in Moisturizer (8.0 fl oz): $20
- Lite Leave-in Moisturizer (8.0 fl oz): $20
- Pudding for style, define, & hold (6.7 oz): $22 

For you ladies who may be hesitant to buy the full size bottles, they have a 4-Piece Starter Kit available online with deluxe size bottles for $24. 

The Carol’s Daughter Hair Milk Collection is available at Carol’s Daughter stores, Carolsdaughter.com, Sephora stores, and Macy’s stores nationwide.

Have any of you ladies used any products from the new Hair Milk Collection? I want to hear your thoughts in the comments!