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To Pick or Not To Pick?

by HealthyLocs on January 23, 2015

This is a great write up by one of our guest Bloggers, Kevin.  In it he explores his decision to possibly get rid of his locs.  I went through this journey myself.  Unlike Kevin I didn’t think it through for too long.  I just started picking out lint and accidentally picked a whole loc out lol From there it was on! I kept going and love my now loose natural hair.  But i will say I miss my locs everyday and will eventually be locing again.  One thing to always keep in mind is what will you do with your hair after you take the locs out or off.  Its work people!  Locs are definitely easier lol Leave a comment below and let Kevin and I know what you think about picking out locs verses just cutting them off :-)

Healthy Scalp, Healthy Locs

Nyesha Samuel, Publisher/Master Loctician for healthylocsblog.com

To Pick or Not To Pick? – By Guest Blogger Kevin Tarver

There’s comes a time in your natural hair journey where you reach a crossroads. You reach a peak of what I like to call “tress distress” because you no longer know what to do with your healthy natural hair. You’ve twisted it out, you’ve done every up-do known to mankind, you’ve accessorized your hair to to no end, and you’ve tried every color dye that you could think of to liven up your kinky natural hair. And so you may ask, “What’s wrong with that?” And I say, “Absolutely nothing!”

Our natural hair is uniquely versatile, taking on many styles that suit our fancy. Alas, I’m at a place where I’m thinking of doing something different with my locs since I’ve had them for such a long time, 8 years to be exact. Admittedly, I’m a low maintenance loc wearing dude, so, you may not catch me with fantastic loc accessories or luxurious natural hair dyes all up in my head, although I’ve heavily considered those options. Nope, I just stick to keeping it either in a bun or ponytail. Daring, ain’t it?

But I dare consider doing something completely different to my healthy locs. I’m contemplating picking my locs out! Yes, I’m thinking about changing my whole natural hair game up by taking a good quality rat tail comb, or some variant device, and picking my locs out. You see, I could just snip each individual loc, then let my barber do the rest, but I feel that since I took the time to grow out my locs, I might as well take the time out and unravel them myself.

Sure, you can speed of the process by having a few good friends help you out, along with some good snacks, good music, and some good laughs, but I feel it would be somewhat spiritual just to have that alone time with yourself and your healthy hair. From what I know, it will take some days, maybe over a week to complete, so if you’re always out and about, you may need a backup plan, but I mostly work from home. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still contemplating the decision, but I do know if I were to ever let my locs go, I still want a full head of my African American hair dancing atop my head. Besides, loc picking isn’t the only way for me to let my locs go while maintaining length or fullness of my natural unloc’d hair.

I had a good friend who decided to let her locs go, but kept a good amount of her unloc’d natural hair. She allowed her new growth to flourish, never getting her new growth twisted or interlocked into her locs. Imagine the surprise of classmates when she left class with auburn locs swinging pat her shoulders only to come to class the next day with her natural hair “stretched,” possibly pressed, almost shoulder length hair. I tell you, the versatility of our hair is something major.

So, I have a few things to think about as my healthy locs are pulled back in a wild bun. I mean, I still have so many options to explore, like dying my locs, or rocking a funky afro-punk loc style. However, I want to make a change, and a simple loc trim won’t do. Whatever I decide, I’ll be sure to let you know!

So, talk to me, should I pick my locs or try other styles? What would you do?

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By Jocelyn Renee

Some professionals will tell you NOT to use the Jamaican Mango & Lime Locking Gel, while other Dreadheads will say it’s their favorite product; so who do you listen to? The facts.

Jamaican Mango & Lime Locking Gel on the Shelves

When you pick up a jar of the Jamaican Mango & Lime Locking Gel you’ll see claims of “Long Lasting Hold” and “No Build Up” and the promise that it will “start and maintain locks and twists naturally”, yet when you look at the back of the jar the ingredients appear unnatural.

Jamaican Mango & Lime Locking GelBack of Jamaican Mango & Lime Locking Gel

Personally, I can’t pronounce half of ingredients so I would put it back on the shelf but more than half of consumers do not read labels or research the ingredients. So let’s take a look at exactly what’s inside this yellow jar of locking gel.

Jamaican Mango & Lime Locking Gel Ingredients

The 15 ingredients in the Jamaican Mango & Lime Locking Gel as listed on the label (July 2014) include:

Deionized Water, Polyquaternium 37, VPDMAPA/ Acrylate Copolymer, Propylene Glycol, Diazolidinyl Urea, Methylparaben, Proplyparaben, Mango Butter (Mangifera Indica), Lime Extract (Tilia Cordata), Virgin Coconut Oil (Coco Nucifera), Chlorophyll, Green Tea Extract (Camellia Sinesis), Fragrance (Parfum), Yellow #10 (CI 47005), Red #33 (CI17200)

After reading that label, would you use it on your hair? Maybe.

But let’s read the ingredients list in terms of how “good*” they are for your hair.

Understanding What’s Inside Jamaican Mango & Lime Locking Gel

It is assumed that the ingredients are listed in order of strength, from most concentration to least.

  1. Deionized Water– Good Ingredient – Used as a solvent.
  2. Polyquaternium 37– Cautionary Ingredient – Used to keep down fly-aways due to static electricity. Also used as a hair fixative, so this means it can build up in your hair with repeated use, making it sticky or crunchy.
  3. VPDMAPA/ Acrylate Copolymer– Cautionary Ingredient – Film-forming/ plasticizing polymer. Can build up and get sticky.
  4. Propylene Glycol– Cautionary Ingredient – Is a form of mineral oil, an alcohol produced by fermentation of yeast and carbohydrates. Humectant that is a clear, colorless, thick liquid that can also be used to dissolve ingredients and carry moisture in a product.
  5. Diazolidinyl Urea– Cautionary Ingredient – Preservative that has had some controversy for being a formaldehyde-releasing preservative that can cause skin irritation. Works best against molds and yeasts but it needs to be used with other preservatives, such as parabens.
  6. Methylparaben– Cautionary Ingredient – A food grade preservative that is potentially harmful.
  7. Proplyparaben– Cautionary Ingredient – A food grade preservative that is potentially harmful.
  8. Mango Butter (Mangifera Indica)– Okay Ingredient – Used for conditioning and as a humectant.
  9. Lime Extract (Tilia Cordata)– Avoid Using Ingredient – Can be drying to the hair and irritating to the scalp and it may cause skin irritation and/or sun sensitivity.
  10. Virgin Coconut Oil (Coco Nucifera)– Good Ingredient – Very good moisturizing oil. Can penetrate the cortex, so it may be able to make hair stronger.
  11. Chlorophyll– Okay Ingredient – Classified as not expected to be potentially toxic or harmful and its not suspected to be an environmental toxin.
  12. Green Tea Extract (Camellia Sinesis)– Good Ingredient – Green tea comes from the leaves of an evergreen bush or small tree from Asia. It is soothing and can reduce inflammation on the skin but it can’t do anything for the hair.
  13. Fragrance (Parfum)– Cautionary Ingredient – The word “fragrance” or “parfum” on the product label represents an undisclosed mixture of various scent chemicals and ingredients used as fragrance dispersants such as diethyl phthalate. Fragrance mixes have been associated with allergies, dermatitis, respiratory distress and potential effects on the reproductive system.
  14. Yellow #10 (CI 47005)– Okay Ingredient – Yellow food coloring found in products for teeth, bath products, conditioners, and shampoos.
  15. Red #33 (CI17200)– Okay Ingredient – Red coloring ingredient used in lipstick and blush.

Professional Recommendation

I would not recommend using the Jamaican Mango & Lime Locking Gel in locs because it can cause build up in the locs, as identified within the first 3 ingredients, and there are many additives in the gel that are not beneficial to the hair Additionally, the Jamaican Mango & Lime Locking Gel also contains a lot of parbens which are known carcinogens.

Loc Maintenance Product Recommendation

There are a couple of commercially available and holistic products to use instead of Jamaican Mango & Lime Locking Gel. I personally would recommend using either of the following products:

Homemade Aloe Vera Gel
Homemade Flaxseed Gel
“Shine & Define” by OyinHandmade

*Also “Tropical Hair Butter” by Nyraju Skin Care

Original post appeared on CurlyNuGrowth.com – http://curlynugrowth.com/jamaican-mango-and-lime-locking-gel-product-knowledge/.

*You can find my Guest Blogger Jocelyn Renee by following her at;

Instagram | @CurlyNuGrowth
Facebook | CurlyNuGrowth
Twitter | @CurlyNuGrowth
YouTube | CurlyNuGrowth

 

Healthy Scalp, Healthy Locs

Nyesha Samuel, Publisher/Master Loctician for healthylocsblog.com

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Pelo Malo (Bad Hair): A Rare Look Into Latin American Race Relations

by HealthyLocsDecember 11, 2014

I would love it if this piece would come to Atlanta, GA so i can see the full film.  I watched the series Black In Latin America and am interested in seeing this one as well. Click below to watch the trailer. “Pelo Malo” means “bad hair” in Spanish. It’s a term that is commonly […]

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Black Hair: The Missing Education

by HealthyLocsDecember 4, 2014

“Why does she wear an afro?” “Why is her hair styled that way?” These questions spur a conversation about Afro-textured hair that should be occurring. The lack of this conversation has resulted in discriminatory events, for example, this past week Tiffany Bryan, a 27-year-old cancer survivor from New York, was fired from her job for […]

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We Love Tamron Halls Natural Curls!

by HealthyLocsNovember 29, 2014

It has been a few months since Tamron Hall shared her natural curls with the world, but i still wanted to take the time out to say congratulations Tamron! Below is an article on how the reveal went down.  Leave a comment and let me know what you think Tamron Hall, the “Today” show’s first […]

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Taliah Waajid World Natural Hair Show October 2014

by HealthyLocsNovember 8, 2014

Hello everyone.  Ok,  so I know the show was two weeks ago but I’ve been so swamped with hair clients that this is the first chance I’ve had to post anything about the show.  So here it goes…… I had a blast!!  I hadn’t been to the show in a few years and was excited […]

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Black Hair Care: The Korean Monopoly the Industry

by HealthyLocsOctober 2, 2014

This is a fantastic documentary about the beauty supply industry and the attempted shut out of Black owners by Korean owners.  I live in the Atlanta,GA and I make sure that whenever i’m in Marietta to work with a hair client I go to Atlanta Beauty Depot.  Its a black owned beauty supply store on […]

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Loc Maintenance

by HealthyLocsAugust 19, 2014

Maintenance for natural African American hair is important. We take pride in our hair, and the best way to show how much we love our natural locs is to develop some type of hair maintenance routine. Now, we can search Google all day and watch many YouTube natural hair gurus break down their hair regimen; […]

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Best Products for Locs

by HealthyLocsJuly 7, 2014

The best products for healthy locs doesn’t have to be name brand products you find at a high end beauty supply stores. Even those top products may contain not so loc-friendly ingredients may do more harm to your hair than good. You can achieve healthy locs using simple and affordable products that benefit your locs […]

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My Loc Extension Journey

by HealthyLocsMay 2, 2014

We all know how fun, or not so fun, it can be transitioning our loose natural tresses to a fully loc’d form. It takes a lot of hard work, and most importantly, it takes patience. However, with everything in life, we tend to want things instantly with little to no hassle whatsoever. Basically, if we […]

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