12.09.2012

Relaxer Results

Hi friends! I hope your Sunday is going well. This is a long post, so feel free to skip to the bottom for pics if you don't feel like reading! I got my hair relaxed today after 13 weeks. I usually relax anywhere between 12 and 14 weeks, so I'm right on schedule.

Overall I had a really good relaxer experience from start to finish in terms of tangling and the blow-out process, which can be horrible, BUT - I'm stressed! After my last relaxer, I was excited to see if I would make my end of year goal of APL, but over the last month or more, my hair has been BREAKING like crazy. Yes ladies - you heard me right, the dreaded B word. They were little tiny pieces, but that obviously adds up!

Initially when I noticed the breakage, I thought it would pass, but it never did. The one thing that I changed to try to combat the breakage was to stop using the detangling spray as a leave-in conditioner (although I stopped using it because I ran out, not because I thought it was the cause of the problem). I also used tea before shampooing for a few weeks. The reason I didn't change much is because I couldn't figure out what to change. When I reflected on my regimen, I couldn't think of anything majorly different that I was doing...kind of. Over time I was making really small adjustments to my regimen (for example different oils, using honey, etc. to pre-condition), so I think that is also what made it hard to figure out. Then I was thinking that maybe I just needed a good trim.

Well after my hair was blown out and it was time to trim, my stylist showed me that my hair is DEFINITELY broken in certain areas. My left side was shorter than my right, so I imagine the breakage I suffered came primarily from the left side, there is a section in the back of my hair with some breakage (it's minimal, but breakage nonetheless), and then there's a section on the front left side that's broken. Also, my ends on the left side were significantly more worn than the right, which is just weird.

While my stylist was showing me this, I immediately started stressing because my hair seemed to be doing so well earlier this year, and I feel like I had just gotten into a rhythm with understanding my hair and now it has some damage and I don't know why. Length goals immediately went out of the window because I will always strive for health over length.

I started thinking a bit harder and trying to remember what I was doing differently at the beginning of the year versus now. I think in an effort to keep the basics the same, I may have experimented too much with things that should have been a part of the basics, but weren't. For example, I used to do a weekly oil treatment with Huile d'Ales pre shampoo Intense Hydrating Oil before shampooing, and then go into my routine. Also, I used to shampoo 2X during a typical wash day, but I've been being lazy and only doing one shampoo on a given week. I used to do a protein treatment every other week (I think), but I haven't done that since April. Long story short, the small things definitely add up, and I've learned that the hard way.

So I purchased a few of the basics that I used to use and will start using again in an effort to get back on track. The other thing I learned is that I need to start journaling again! Part of the reason why I couldn't figure out what was different is because I haven't been diligent about recording my regimen and products (or blogging about it). I have a horrible memory and if I don't write things down, I won't remember. So without further delay, here are a few pics from today + comparisons. BTW - my BF thinks I made APL, while my sister says I'm grazing...I'm not sure.

Relaxer Results: December 2012


Left: December 2012, Right: September 2012


November 2011 vs. December 2012


16 comments:

  1. Your hair is so beautiful! You have made great progress! I honestly can't even tell you had breakage and I'm sure you will get your hair back in shape.

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    1. Thank you so much Ms. D! I appreciate the encouragement - I'm definitely going to try to make some improvements between now and my next relaxer! HHG

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  2. I agree with Ms. D, can't tell at all. Your hair looks gorgeous!

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    1. Thank you very much Jeni - much appreciated! I just want to nip this thing in the bud before it becomes a set-back. HHG

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  3. You certainly made progress with the length so don't feel too down. You'll get the problem areas under control because you have come this far with your hair and nothing will be beyond your reach.

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    1. Thank you so much, I appreciate your encouragement. I'm definitely happy that we identified the problem areas now so that I can start working on them before I have a set back. HHJ!

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  4. Your progress is great! Like all of the comments before mine, you hair looks very pretty and I cannot tell you suffered any breakage. You will be APL before you know it; stay encouraged!

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    1. Thank you very much Shawnie! I appreciate the well wishes. After taking some time to think about how far I've come, I am happy with my progress and will definitely try to enjoy the longest length I've ever achieved! HHJ

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  5. That's some great progress!!! Your hair looks great!

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    1. Thank you Shika! I'm trying to get to your length missy :-)! HHJ

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  6. I am in love with the blunt cut that you have going on there, your hair looks in great shape!

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    1. Thank you so much Nadine! I am strict about trimming with every relaxer in order to maintain healthy ends. I stopped by your blog for the first time and you have beautiful hair. I hope to achieve your length soon! HHJ

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    1. Thank you Napp! I trim with every relaxer in order to maintain them. HHJ!

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  8. Your hair looks great. You can see the improvement in health!

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    1. Thank you BB!!! Much appreciated. HHJ

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