My Hair Journey Update Volume 1: Where I’ve Been (And My New Experiment)

My Hair Journey Update Volume 1: Where I’ve Been (And My New Experiment)

I can’t believe it’s been over a year since my last post. Life can be so hectic sometimes.

Though I haven’t been sharing my journey latey, I’ve managed to make a lot of progress in my hair journey. I suppose I wanted to keep it a secret just in case it was an epic fail.

I’ve Mastered The “FEEL” Of My Hair

My hair prior to cut (June 2020)

I have always been one of those naturals that couldn’t tell when my hair needed protein vs. when it needed moisture. It’s part of the reason I tried the water only washing method a few years ago.

Even though my days without products are gone, I’ve learned what KIND of products my hair likes and I’m able to alter my products based on my hair’s current needs. 

It may not seem like a big deal, but it’s one of the things that was keeping me from retaining length and it wasn’t until I learned how MY hair felt when it needed a specific thiing (protein or moisture) that I really started to make better hair maintenance choices and progress in my journey.

If you’re having an issue identifying what your hair needs, it’s time to stop buying products just because your favorite YouTuber says they love it. It’s time to focus on how YOUR hair responds to the products you’re using and researching the signs of hair that needs protein vs. hair that needs moisture and THEN you should see how many of those characteristics matches your hair’s current state.

I Made A Routine (And Am Sticking With It)

I based my routine off of the fact that my hair is high porosity and that my hair was breaking more than normal and seemed pretty darn weak in general (gotta love having fine and medium strands).

Since I knew I was being consistent with my moisture routine (and the fact that my hair felt soft yet kept breaking) I figured I was probably missing protein in my routine.

My Experiment Begins

Novel My Curls Line

One day, during my wash day, I started thinking about the condition of my scalp. It’s exremely oily by the time my wash day came. At the time, I was only washing once a week and not only was my scalp super-mega oily by then, My hair was parched and tangled.

I took a good look at my hair products and I realized something: 

I’d collected a number of random products I loved, but very few of them were from the same line. I then thought back to the numerous product collections and realized this was a “thing” for me. 

I’d never used an entire line from a single brand, nor have I ever stuck to a single brand even when mixing product lines.

I decided to do some quarantine shopping and stumbled upon some Brazillian products. 

Crecé Pélo was a product I’d previously used (from the Dominican Repulbic) and I love it! However, I noticed this was a protein heavy treatment and they don’t have a moisture line so I opted to venture into a brand called Novex.

I noticed this company caters to ALL hair types and they offer a lot of different lines. They’re also affordable!  How often can you buy 35oz of deep conditoner for less than $20?! 

***(You can get 10% off your order with code: MYHIPOFRO)***

I stocked up on their deep conditoners, sulfate-free shampoo, rinse out and leave-in conditioners and I began to use ONLY this brand. 

I’m curious to see how sticking to a single brand affects my hair, since in the past years I’ve read numerous articles stating that using products (even if from different lines) from the same brand would give you better results than mixing and matching random products from different companies.

Sally Beauty chimes in on whether or not we should be using the same brand’s products together: Is it important to use the same brand of shampoo and conditioner?

Meanwhile, an article published by Women’s Health Magazine states using products from the same brand is “a bad idea”. You can check out what they have to say here:

Matching Your Shampoo and Conditioner Brand Is Actually a Bad Idea 

The way I see it, since I’ve always MIXED different brands, I figured I would try sticking with one brand for a while to see if I actually noticed a difference.

Amping Up The Pre-Poo 

I’d been doing very simple coconut oil pre-poo overnight, but I decided to pull out my ayurvedic powders to use more frequently than I have in the past. 

Will they benefit my hair journey? I’m sure they will, but time will tell. (stay tuned for a future post on ayurvedic powders and how they benefit your hair) 

I Increased My Washing Frequency

I used to wash my hair once a week (as I previously mentioned) but have increased this to twice a week. Not only have I started washing more frequently, I’ve decided to ditch the sulfate shampoos for a while because while my scalp loves being stripped (at least it feels amazing) the length of my hair suffered.

Since learning that sulfate-free shampoos can remove silicones, I realized I may not need to strip my hair with such a harsh cleanser. Again, time will tell.

Using More Protein

I started using waaaaaay more protein than I have before. One of the first things I noticed was my shedding decreased immensely. I also noticed much less breakage.

Self-Given Haircut

After haircut (July 1, 2020)

I needed to trim my hair, but I decided to use my experiment as an excuse to cut my hair short again (I admittedly have a scissor habit after my hair gets a certain length).

I wanted to see how much of a difference using one brand for a while would affect my hair’s length retention. 

Venturing Into The “Forbidden” Wash-N-Go

My first successful wash n’ go

A lot of type 4 naturals and naturals with fine strands avoid this style like the plague, claiming the style causes hair breakage and tangles, however, NaturalReign, a popular high porosity YouTuber, has hair that is THRIVING even though her go-to style is the very one that has given so many others so many issues.

Trying New Things

In a nutshell, I’ve been trying new things. I think I’m just at that point in my hair journey that I know my hair well enough to be more bold because I now know all of these new things about my hair.

Trying the banding method for the first time

When you know your hair, you find it’s okay to try new things even though the sound of it may sound like a nightmare. Sometimes it comes down to changing your routine or technique.

There are a lot of new thins I want to try and share with you and hopefully you will be inspired to experiment with your natural hair as well.

Until next time, stay positive, accept yourself and love your curls! They’re unique, just like you!

Aria Len

What are some new things you’ve learned during your natural hair journey? Share your comment below!

Aria Len

Sharing my natural hair journey with hopes to inspire you to find what makes your hair happy in order to reach your hair goals.

12 thoughts on “My Hair Journey Update Volume 1: Where I’ve Been (And My New Experiment)

  1. Being Asian I’m very curios about hair type especially those that are not familiar in my culture. I’m always fascinated by natural  curly hair just like yours. I wonder how do with this kind of hair maintain their hair? What do they use for shampoo? How many times do they need to wash their hair and many more things that make me really curios. Your article answered some of my questions. My curiosity was satisfied and It makes me feel really good. I can recommend the products you mentioned to my friends with this type of hair.Actually I’m sharing this post to them.

    1. Hi Brian!

      As far as cleansing goes, most with my hair type tend to use sulfate-free shampoo. Other than the fact that type 4 hair tends to be the curliest, I don’t think there is a huge difference in general hair care when it comes to cleansing, moisturizing and styling.

      Since every head of hair is different (even when it appears the same when looking at it) the tricky part just comes down to finding which products your hair responds the best to as well as whether or not our protein and moisture is balanced.

      I’m glad I could answer some of your questions! Thanks for commenting!

  2. Wow, you have certainly learned a lot about your hair and also available products. I appreciate your sharing your journey!

    With a family of 9 kids, we’ve managed some interesting hair issues. Some have thick, curly hair, others have straight, limp hair. As such, we have to keep several different types of products. Shower space is often a premium for storage!

    We do use coconut oils but had not thought of using them before washing. I guess I should have, it makes sense. And with the thicker hair, our hairdresser often will pre-condition, which is what you are doing with the coconut oil. So we’ll be trying that with my daughter that has the thick, curly hair. She is always trying to tame it in our humid climate!

    Thanks for the detailed information. I’ll be referring back to find more help for hair!

    1. I can only imagine the size of your household’s product selection! I grew up in a family of type 3 and 4 curls, so while I can’t relate to such a wide range of textures, I think learning or knowing your hair is the first step to being able to find the products that work for each person’s hair.

      It’s a hair journey, so you’ll constantly be learning new things about your hair as long as you’re paying attention to how your hair responds to certain products. Becoming a product junkie is unfortunately part of a necessary step in everyone’s hair journey, no matter their texture.

      I’m so glad I could help in some way! Stay beautiful!

  3. Hi,
    As a black woman who has chosen to ditch the processed hair, I am so happy to stumble across your post. I am not as far along as you are. Only about three inches of hair growth. The thing is I haven’t rocked my natural hair since I was a child so its a learning process for me. I need all the help I can get.

    I have been using braids to help with this journey but I’m ready to ditch that too. Please add me to your mailing list.

    Candy Benn

    1. Don’t worry, as you continue in your journey, things will begin to fall into place.

      It seems like just yesterday that I was rock ‘ a TWA.

      Next thing ya know, your routine will become second nature.

      I’ll definitely add you to my mailing list! Thanks so much for stopping by! See you soon!

  4. Wow Aria, you sure have lovely hair! I have African hair and would kill to have natural hair like that. I do weaves but only because my natural hair won’t behave itself.  I ended up relaxing it because it was just too tough to maintain in its natural state. As a matter of fact this is the second time it has been relaxed after I cut it off years back because of excessive breakage. I think my challenge is not feeding it enough oils, because it grows pretty fast. I am terribly lazy in that department. What would you recommend to keep my hair nourished and breakage free?

    1. Hi!

      Thank you so much for the compliment! As far as your hair goes,I personally would recommend a protein treatment once a month to start and in between that just make sure you’re moisturizing and sealing your hair at least every 3-4 days.

      Your hair is being rebellious because it wants something. It’s trial and error until you find the missing link.

      I hope this helps!

  5. Thanks so much for sharing a beautiful, informative article with us. The principal element of this article is about hair Journey Update Volume 1. It’s really amazing that you covered this subject so well in your post. I have learned a lot from reading your post and gained a lot of knowledge about it. I like Novex of the points mentioned in your article. The main reason for choosing this brand is that my wife has been using it for a long time which is getting good results for her hair.
    I’ve read your article and enjoyed it and I’d like to share it with my friends by posting it in the Facebook community so that everyone knows about your article and gets to know it.

    1. Awww, thanks so much! I don’t think this product is mentioned enough because it’s not as well known, but I’m so glad I’m not the only one enjoying this brand!

      Please do share! High porosity hair is often overlooked in hair care advice.

  6. Well! An interesting read and the fact that you took the confidence and the bold step to actually cut your hair to regrow it better. Actually for me, I dont think I ever have the courage to do this. I have my hair since birth and I do not think I have ever raised the thought of actually cutiing it before. Good one to read though

    1. Thank you! I’m actually glad I cut my hair, now I’m curious to find out how long it takes before I start to get split ends. It should be an interesting ride 😂.

      I’m glad you enjoyed this!

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