Sunday, August 31, 2014

Product review- Ettenio Cocolicious

Ettenio Cocolicious Balancing Penetrating Conditioner


Cost- US$ 11.00 ( I bought this particular jar when I was in Jamaica) but you can check out their Facebook page for international distributors.



Claims- Infused with natural ingredients to counteract dry and damaged hair


Blurb- This delicious blend of Cocos Butter and Coconut Oil provided dry hair with much needed moisture from the cuticle to the cortex. Cocoa butter wraps the cuticle, while Coconut oil penetrates deep down into the cortex. A balance is reached when Silk Protein and Wheat Protein combines with these moisture rich emollients.It means your hair is at its optimum best, and will live in hair heaven as Cocolicious keeps hair in perfect harmony until your next wash day.


Ingredients- Distilled water,Botanical extracts of Chamomille, Rosemary,Nettle,Saw Palmetto, Burdock, Horsetail, Basil,Moringa, Catsnip, Lavender, Thyme, Green Tea, Black Tea; Aloe Vera juice, Conditioning emulsifiers, Cocos nucifera (coconut) Oil, Cocoa Butter, honey, Hydrolyzed Silk Protein,hydrolyzed Wheat Protein,Hydrolyzed Quinoa Protein, Panthenol, potassium sorbate, preservatives,fragrance.

Pros- It smells so heavenly, I had the urge to eat it because it reminds me of vanilla ice cream.
This product is thick almost like whipped butter and is easily distributed, which I thought was great.
The instructions is to sit under the dryer for 10 minutes but you can use your conditioning cap or a plastic cap to get the same results because is melts right into the hair.
I have rinsed it out with both warm and cold water and it washes out easily and leave the hair very moisturized and smelling great. Yes it does keep your hair in perfect harmony.

Cons- The only tow cons that I found was that it is not easily available outside of Jamaica and that at 11 bucks a pop for 8 oz it is a tad-bit expensive.

My Take-  This conditioner is worth all $11 in my book and will continue to be one of my favorite until I am unable to replenish my stock the cows come home or they no longer make this product.

Have you used it? What is your take on it?

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Wash Day- Four weeks post

The honeymoon of newly relaxed hair is coming to an end.  At the four weeks post mark is when I begin to struggle with my new growth, so this wash day I went for extra moisture.



 So here is how my wash day went:


Prepoo with Cantu Leave-in conditioning repair cream under a plastic cap and my headscarf for about an hour while I cleaned my refrigerator.  I was sweating half way through I certainly generated enough heat.  After removing the plastic cap I rinsed with warm water.

Shampoo with Loreal Total repair 5 restoring shampoo, this shampoo it was one of my first buy when I began my hair journey; love that it leaves my hair soft and moisturized.

Tea Rinse with my black tea brew, by pouring it over my head for five minutes, then rinse with cold water.

Deep conditioned with Ettenio Cocolicious balancing penetrating conditioner and Grapeseed oil under my conditioning cap for thirty minutes. Before rinsing with warm and cold water. I love the smell of Ettenio Cocolicious and to top it off it leaves my hair moisturized. T-shirt dry and put my hair in four sections.


Then  apply my leave-ins of Ettenio twenty four 7 leave-in treatment, Creme of Nature strength and shine leave-in conditioner and OGX coconut milk anti breakage serum to each section.  After applying my leave-ins to all four sections I allowed my hair to air dry before putting my hair in 14 flexi-rods.




This past week was a little trying for me after I had an allergic reaction to grapeseed oil; unfortunately I can only use it during the wash process not a sealant where it may touch my skin. So I had to tempt faith and use it with my deep conditioner.


All in all I had a great wash day.  Hope your wash day was as successful.  


Thursday, August 28, 2014

Back to School Blues

Summer reading and book report is done. Back to school shopping is done.Now the big test starts.

After cruising the aisles of Target and Wal-mart  and the virtual aisles of Amazon, I have snag all the pencils, crayon, binder leaves, backpack and the countless supplies that my third grader needs for the upcoming school year. The uniforms are crisped and clean and ready for the beating they will take in the next ten months.

SUPPLIES
As the first day of school draws closer my son is not the only one with anxiety.  This had me wondering what I can do to make the school year smoother for both him and I.

After two years of having the same teacher which my son believes hates him, I am actually looking forward to getting to know a new teacher and to learn if my son nonchalant behavior will change. I will do my best to relax this school year, but as all parents know that by October I will possibly be wishing for June.

I have become a great logistic manager when it comes to getting him from one place to the next.  However, this year his father aka assistant logistic manager has four consecutive days of school ( he is finally working on finishing his degree). I will do my best to stick to the drop off and pick up plans.

Homework time is always a source of contention, so this school year I will not hover and allow him to complete his homework independently.

I have resigned myself to the knowledge that I will have to buy new uniforms and shoes come January because by then they will all be a tattered mess. I know I will also be look forward to each holiday on the school schedule, so I can take a breath and not deal with traffic or homework.

Wishing all parents a great school year, we will need it.






Monday, August 25, 2014

Product Review- Creme of Nature Perfect 7

Creme of Nature with Argan oil from Morocco perfect 7 Leave in treatment.


Cost- $ 7.99 ( purchased from Amazon.com)

Claims- 1-Detangles & Conditions
             2-Heat Protection
             3-Breakage Defense
             4-Control frizz
             5- Moisturizes Dry Hair
             6-Prevents Split ends
             7-Adds Exotic Shine

Blurb- Experience 7 amazing benefits ALL IN ONE hair treatment. Perfect for all hair types including relaxed and natural textures.

Pros- The product is thick and really offers a great slip which aids in the detangling process.  Due it being such a thick product the hair is easily manageable which prevents breakage.  It coats the hair perfectly and is good for heat protection.

Cons- Thick product is thick which is not all together bad but coats the hair and weights it down and does not add any shine as they professed. It has a very strong smell and way too over powering.

My Take- I hate the smell but I like how it feels on my hair, I use it mostly on the wash days where I will certainly wear my hair up, because of the lack of shine.  I am not sure I will buy it again but will certainly continue to use it.


Have you used it? What is your take on it?

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Wash Day


This wash day was a little fast and efficient but nevertheless great.

Prepoo with Cantu Shea Butter deep treatment masque with olive oil and grapeseed oil mixed in. I didn't like the Cantu deep treatment masque so was using it up to make space. I sat under my conditioning cap for 25 minutes, then rinsed with warm water.

Shampoo with ORS creamy aloe shampoo, I used a lot of product this past week and felt I need to get a good lather going.  As always ORS does not disappoint, my hair felt clean and gunk free.

Tea rinse with  black tea by pouring it over my head for 3-5 minutes then rinse with cold water.


Deep conditioned with Organics by Africa's Best hair mayonnaise under my conditioning cap for 30 minutes, (it my be more because I was talking to my mom).  Yes it is a protein treatment but love the softness and and strength my hair have after using this product.  Rinsed with warm water and t-shirt dry for 20 minutes.




Apply leave in of Creme of Nature Perfect 7 and OGX coconut milk antibreakage serum before detangling and putting my hair into four sections. Roller set each section with my 2-inch rollers ( I used 16 rollers in all) then sat under The Andis bonnet dryer for 35 minutes.  I had to DIY the dryer cap to fit over the rollers.
After 35 minutes my hair was completely dry, I the apply a few drops of Ettenio seal and shine and shine.






I think I am getting over my blow dryer addiction this is the third week I have not pulled it out.

Hope you had a great was day.



Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Weight Loss Challenge Recap

What did I learn from this challenge?  


I learned that my diet is the biggest hindrance in my weight loss journey.  I do eat healthy foods but I often do not plan my meals on work days. On the days I don't plan my meals I eat too little and often end up eating crappy food that is not beneficial to my health or lifestyle.

I can loss weight and have become quite an athlete.  I can run a 15 minute mile, Zumba, cycle, and go kickboxing without feeling as if someone was sitting on my chest.  I am so much stronger than I even imagine and will continue to strengthen my body.

Goals 

Weight loss- loss 4% of my body weight which worked out to roughly 8 lbs
Exercise- visit the gym or work out from home at least four times per week
Diet- Pack my lunch, snack and smoothie each day. Also have a small dinner a a snack each night.

Recap

Weight loss-  Lost 5.3 lbs/ 2.7 % which was close but no cigar. 
Exercise-  I did make it to the gym on a fairly regular basis; I did work out from home but had a few rough spots were I did not have the energy or motivation to do so.  I love how I feel after a vigorous exercise and will continue to incorporate it in my everyday life.

Diet-  I was a total failure at packing my lunch and snack for work but did great in eating a small dinner with my shake.

I fell short by 2.7 lbs but is still excited that I was able to lose more than 1 lb on average per week.  I will continue my weight loss journey and give periodic updates on my progress or challenges.  


Hope I was able ti inspire you on your weight lost journey.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Weight Loss Challenge- Week 4 Recap

I love to take time away from my very hectic work life, but the downside of that time away is a real bummer.  My stress level this week was through the roof, my blood pressure and eating suffered.

Week 4 recap


Weight Loss-  .8 lbs, I am actually surprise that I loss any weight at all.

Exercise-  I slacked off terrible this week, I did not exercise once at home this week. I killed it in kickboxing and oh my! I felt great after.  On Saturday a friend and I went to SoulCycle it was different from normal cycle and was fun.  I truly believe it was because of SoulCycle why I lost any weight at all.  I will certainly  do a session of SoulCycle once per month even though it cost and arm and a leg.  

Diet-  I followed my diet plan on Monday, the rest of week was a crap shoot.  I think I had pizza twice in one week which I never do, but that could certainly account for why I felt so lousy this week.


This week was not a total lost but I will continue my journey to a leaner and healthier body.





Sunday, August 17, 2014

Wash Day

This wash day was more like a wash late night.  I had a very busy day and I made the decision to wash early in the morning but change my mind last minute since I was up and didn't have much to do.

So here is how my wash day went:


Prepoo with Cantu Shea Butter leave-in conditioning repair cream for roughly 45 minutes under a plastic cap and my head tie.  I did not feel like using my conditioning cap for this week's prepoo.  As always my hair  felt soft and after washing out the prepoo with cold water.

Shampoo with Loreal Total repair 5 restoring shampoo.  I bought this shampoo at the beginning of my hair journey and love that a get a good clean and that my hair remains soft and manageable. 

Tea Rinse with my brewed black tea by pouring over my head for 3 minutes before rinsing with cold water. My shedding is at a minimum and each week I see my hair getting darker ( I'm loving it).

Deep Conditioned with ORS Olive oil replenishing conditioner and Grapeseed Oil under my conditioner cap for 30 minutes plus some because I lost track of time.  I rinsed with warm water because of the oil and followed up with a cold water. Loving the feel of my hair; toweled dry for 2 minutes while researching how to do a high bun with weave hair on YouTube.

Apply Leave-In conditioner of Creme of Nature strength and shine leave-in conditioner, Ettenio twenty four 7 leave in treatment and OGX coconut milk anti-breakage serum before roller setting and calling it a night.



Even though it was a very late night it was great wash day and will probably sporting a high bun mid-week.

Hope you had a great wash day. 

Friday, August 15, 2014

Skin Care

I was blessed in my teenage years with very good skin.  I never suffered from acne; my sister often joke that my son and I have very supple skin. She says this because I believe you should always moisturizer you skin no matter what time of year or what type of climate. Unfortunately I have to be behind my son who can know lotion his own skin, apply enough lotion to keep his skin moisturized.

As I have aged and gain weight I noticed that my skin and skin tone has change, and not for the better.  The acne that I escaped as a teenager threatens to overtake my once pristine skin. For awhile I thought it was because of the makeup I wear, so I change to the expensive stuff.  When that didn't help I stop wearing makeup all together but still I had the problem.

This prompted me to visit the dermatologist who after looking at my skin told me that as women age our hormones change and that coupled with being overweight can have adverse effects on the skin.   After this very eye opening visit with the dermatologist I return to wearing my make-up and went on a health kick.

Here is what I learned:  

  •  Water is very good; it hydrates your entire body.  When you are properly hydrated you will notice the difference in your skin hair and overall well being.  
  • Exercise not only helps you lose weight and keep you fit but the sweat that you produce cleans your pores and helps to get rid of toxins.
  • Eating foods rich in antioxidant is very good for your overall healthy and your skin will thank you.
  • Cutting down on junk food and processed food and stacking up on healthy fruits and vegetables will help to keep your hormones in balance and in check.
  • If you are make-up wearer  make sure you  moisturizer before applying your make-up.  Your nightly routine should include a facial cleanse and do apply a moisturizer formulated for night. If you are not a make-up wearer apply moisturizer to your face twice a day. 

Skin Care Essential- 

  • Day/night moisturizer ( I love the Avon Anew line)
  • Facial cleanser ( I use the Clean & Clear morning burst)
  • A scrub ( I use the Neutrogena Blackhead Eliminating Daily Scrub)
  • A astringent/toner to help remove make-up

I  still have a flare up every now and then but it happens mostly when I am not doing the right thing.

What are some of the skin care routines you practice?

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Weight Loss Challenge- Week 3 recap

This week was not a typical week; with my mini vacation all my exercise and diet plans was tossed out the window.  Yes I had a great time  on my mini vacation and yes my diet paid the price.

Recap

Weight Loss-  1.5 lbs, I am loving my weight watchers scale, it not only tells me my weight but it tells me my fat %, my water %, my BMI and how much of my weight is my bones.  I think that it is the best think since sliced bread ( as the saying goes). Moreover, it gives me my weight in .1 lbs, which I think is more accurate. 

Exercise-  My Sis and I did two days of Zumba (we have no rhythm) in my living room.  For days three and four we spent at least four hours strolling through the Zoo and the amusement park.  So in my mind that was enough exercise/activity for me, therefore no gym nor Zumba for me for the rest of the week.  In my defense my knees hurt so I was giving my knees time to  heal.

Diet-  I only had one day which I followed my diet plan, because I was too busy having a good time.  Yes, I am pointing the finger at vacation yet again.  The problem I have with not following my diet plan is that I eat too little. No side eyes please; it is a problem because I don't have an appetite so I will go all day without eating. Which as we all know is not good for the metabolism.

Week 4 goals-

Weight loss- 2 lbs
Exercise-  Visit the gym four days and on the off days Zumba in my living room.
Diet-  Revisit my shakes, salad, tuna wrap and snack on my fruits.

I hope to hit it out of the park in week four, so wish me luck.  Hope you all are finding success.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Wash Day- One week post

I normally do a co-wash and conditioner mid week because of my exercise routine, however with all the activities I had this week I did not do my mid week wash.  Even though I moisturized my hair each night it
was still dry so I will add a few extras to this wash day.
Prepoo with Cantu  Shea butter leave in conditioning repair cream and grape-seed oil under my conditioning cap for 20 minutes. This is my first time using grape-seed oil not sure I like the smell. 

 After which I shampoo with ORS olive oil creamy aloe shampoo. I need a cleaning shampoo to get out all the products I used along with the sweat and grime from the past week. 

Tea rinse with black tea, for about 3 minutes by pouring it over my head before rinsing with cold water. Love the black tea rinse not only for help with shedding but because it darkens my hair which I love.

Deep conditioned with  Tresemme naturals aloe and avocado conditioner and grape-seed oil under my conditioning cap for 20 minutes.  T-shirt dry for 10 minutes before detangling.

Put my hair in four sections and apply my Leave-ins of  Creme of nature strength and shine leave in conditioner and OGX anti breakage coconut serum.   I then roller set each section and sat under my new Andis soft bonnet dryer for 35 minutes. I made this new purchase because I need to cure myself of my blow dryer habit.  I think I'm in love but will use it one more time and will probably do a mini post on its pros and cons.

I had completely dried hair and was able to take out my rollers and had nice curls; that was a plus for this wash day.

Even with the new appliance and products, this was a great wash day.

Mini Summer Vacation

Each summer I take one week from my extremely busy schedule to go on a vacation with my son. Even though I am not a great vacationer I love vacations because It gives me a time to relax and rejuvenate.

However, this year my sister was vacationing from Jamaica,so we planned a mini staycation for her visit.  Yes, we vacationed with her when we took a trip to Jamaica this past Easter, however, my son and I were ecstatic that she was coming to visit.

Activity Recap


pedicure
Day one- after I shipped son off to summer camp for another day, my sister and I had a girls day out; which included a manicure, pedicure, a facial and a massage. Not the sexiest toes around town but in my eyes the prettiest.  We had a blast laughing, talking and making fun of the other patrons while we where undergoing our treatments. It was a fabulous day.









We spent day two of our vacation at the Bronx Zoo, yes the famous Bronx Zoo. The Bronx Zoo is an oasis in the middle of NYC and we had a great day visiting the animals.  My son was so excited to visit the reptile house; so I had to suck it up and be patient and calm while he ran from display to display.  My sister waited outside while we meandered through the reptile house.

 I felt like I was walking through a natgeo program. We saw tigers, bears, bald eagles, a rhino, seals and even took a trip to Madagascar were we encountered different species of Lemurs.  Unfortunately the monkey house was closed, but a ride on the butterfly carousel soothed my disappointed son. We had a great day and will surely redo this trip in the future.


Day three was a day of excitement, we spent it at Rye Playland, an amusement park in Rye NY.  We got there at opening time and spent most of the day on the many heart stopping rides.  Our lunch tab from zoo thought us a lesson, so we packed a picnic basket with water, juice, snack and sandwiches.

My favorite ride was the Gondola wheel which I had to convince my son was not scary even though it was the biggest in the park.  We rode the Gondola twice because he wanted the see the park from the top one more time; yes he was convinced.  He rode almost all the kiddy rides and quite a few of the family rides.  My sister and I took turns going with him on the rides he could not go on alone.  One such ride was the go-carts which he did twice.

Let me tell you! those kiddy rides are deceiving, I was that parent who was screaming bloody murder.  Yes, I went on one with him called music express, well let me  tell you all was left for me was to start crying for my mom.  The final straw came when all three of us went on the wipe-out ride, which we figure would be a nice twirl around.  Oh no! I almost lost my breakfast, yes I screamed and even my son the little " I'm am not afraid" started crying.

All in all it was a good-day which ended with my son crying because her wanted to stay because the other kids go to stay.

The final day we figured we should all relaxed and enjoy our time together but it did not work out that way.  my sister spent the day in Manhattan with friends, my son went to the movies and arcade with his summer camp (he wanted to watch "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles").  I spent my day school shopping.  I was a great day for all.

This was a great mini vacation and I'm already missing my sis.


Sunday, August 3, 2014

Weight Loss Challenge- Week two recap

As with week one, week provided its share of challenges.  Two great women in my life had birthdays one day apart, so we had our ladies night out which included lots to drink and eat, many laughter and cakes yes there is always cake.  The theme of this party was Downton Abbey so we all had our custom hats to top off a great evening.


Week 2 Recap

Weight Loss - 1.8 lbs ( another week of not achieving my goal)

Diet- My diet was on point this week except I change my cheat day to Thursday because I went out to lunch to celebrity my friends birthday, yes I ate like a pig and stone oven pizza was excellent.  Had my shakes both morning and evening, had my power pack salad and tuna wrap for lunch most days.  I made a eggplant Parmesan ( homemade sauce and a 1/4 of the cheese the receipe called for) it was great, will make it again.  I had the eggplant parm and grilled salmon for dinner most days.

This week I had grapes and watermelon for my snacks and it certainly help me.

Exercise-  I did two days of cycling and one day of boxing ( I was in a really bad mood so I need to hit something).  I did an 1/2 hour of zumba and 1/2 hour of yoga on the days I did not go to the gym.  Which were Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday; Sunday is my day off.

Recap-  All that celebrating did not help my cause but I'm still on the right track.  To date I have lost 3 lbs and I'm happy.  However, I did change my snacking and exercising ways and I think it paid off.

Week three Goal  

Weight loss - 2lbs

Diet- Lunch- my power pack salad and tuna wrap, dinner- salmon and quinoa and baked chicken with kale salad. Having my smoothie only for breakfast.  Snack of grapes and honeydew melon.

Exercise-  I will change it up a bit this week because I will be on vacation so I'll do a 3k run twice for the week, do my zumba/yoga combo on the off days and one day of cycling at the gym.

Wish me luck with this week's challenge.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Wash Day And Relaxer Touch Up

At eleven weeks post relaxer plus the humidity and daily exercise I could not contain myself.  So I did my relaxer touch up a week earlier than planned because my roots were beginning to tangle almost on a daily basis.  I sweat mostly in my head when I exercise so every other day I have wet roots and even though my Ettenio Moisture Milk keeps it moisturized it didn't prevent it from becoming a mini Afro.

So here is how my wash day went:


1- Protect my ends from getting over processed by applying Cantu Shea butter leave in conditioner to them.  I then add two tablespoon of olive oil to my Africa's Best relaxer to ensure I get the same texlaxed result as the last two touch-up.










2- After I have applied the relaxer I applied some ORS olive oil creamy aloe shampoo to my ends before I began washing out the relaxer.  After all the relaxer was out I shampooed with ORS olive oil creamy aloe shampoo three times to ensure I didn't have any relaxer residue.


3- Applied Aphogee Keratin  2 minute re constructor treatment and rinsed.
- Deep conditioned with Africa's Best hair mayonnaise under my conditioning cap for 30 minutes. After which I rinsed and towel dry for roughly 15 minutes.

4- Applied by leave in treatment of Aphogee Keratin and green tea restructurizer and air dry for 2 hours.
-  Applied Ettenio creme de la creme and Ettenio seal and shine and roller set.

The relaxer results were as I expected and I choose to do a protein overload because of the relaxer touch-up. I have been on this healthy hair journey for the last seven months and  I see the health and strength my hair has gain, however I refuse to do a length check until my one year anniversary.  That being said, I am constantly getting compliments on the length of my hair from friends and to tell you the truth after this touch-up I'm finally saw it for myself.

So I am super excited to see what I'll see five months from now.  Here's to another great wash day.