Saturday, May 21, 2016

Struggles of transitioning to natural hair

It's been almost 1.5 years since I started my transition to natural hair. Has it been easy? No. Was it unbearable? No. Would I recommend going natural? Definitely!. When I started transitioning, I read a lot of posts and watched a lot of videos which said transitioning is very difficult because you have 2 textures and insufficient knowledge on how to care for your 'new' hair. Honestly, after the information overload, I was prepared for the worst. But to my pleasant surprise, my journey hasn't been hell. Either way, there are still some things I've struggled with, and here is how I solved them.

1. Wash time
When my hair was relaxed, it was obviously easier to wash due to the fact that the strands were less tangled so using a conditioner always did the trick. With transitioning hair, it has become more time consuming since I have to separate my hair in sections and detangle the hair. There are 2 things I did to solve this issue: firstly, I cowashed or wet my hair often because I found that when my hair was dry it tangles a lot more making washing a pain. Secondly, I would recommend detangling in sections because this was you are gentle with you hair and honestly you will work through the sections faster than trying to detangle your whole head at once.

2. Frizz
As my new growth increased, I got to a stage where my frontline was curly, too short for a fringe but also too short to pull back. This is one of the awkward stages, especially if the relaxed hair breaks off on that section. It is literally not here not there, so it makes certain days difficult when you can't get it to look less messy. My solution for such days, was gel and a headband. I would spritz my hair with my DIY Hair Moisturizing Spritz, apply some leave-in conditioner and then apply a bit of gel. Brush my hair back using my Tangle Teezer, put my hair in a ponytail and then add a headband.

3. No wash and go
Gone and at the same time still to come, are the times when you could wash your hair and be ready in less than 8 hours. If you try to pull off a wash and go, it would just look ridiculous with your hair partly curly and the rest hanging like a wet towel. Because you now have 2 textures which look nothing alike, you need prepping or pre-styling time which is anywhere from 8hrs if you do not use heat. For this, I didn't have a solution. 

4. Prepping or pre-styling
Now this is probably what I struggle with most. Linked to point 3, it takes forever for my hair to be ready and for me to go out. I constantly have to do braids/twists to merge both textures, so afterwards I can wear a braid out or twist out. And if you forget or are too lazy to make the braids, then into a bun the hair goes because that's the easiest way to hide the texture difference.

That's all I could remember at the moment, but like I said it hasn't been too difficult. With trial and error I learned how to handle each problem, and it is all worth it. Everytime I look at my curls, they make me smile. I am currently at a stage where I still have a bit of relaxed ends but at the same time, I can get away with a wash and go. And let me tell you this, I honestly cannot wait for the day when I trim off the rest of my relaxed ends and will be fully natural. According to my plan, this happens on the first weekend of June, so be sure to follow me on snapchat (@styleofcolours) where I will share the process.

Are you transitioning or considering going natural? Let me know if you have any questions.
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Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Review: MAC Blot Pressed Powder

MAC Blot Pressed Powder
MAC Blot Pressed Powder Review
MAC Blot Pressed Powder in Dark

I have been using the Catrice Translucent powders for a while now and they were doing the job pretty well but I was getting bored and wanted to try out some other brands, plus I am hoping I can find one which has better staying power. I read about the MAC Blot Pressed Powder and it sounded like something I would like, so I did some research on what shade to choose since my friend was going to pick it up. After spending some time checking out what my NC42 girls are using, I decided to go with the shade dark. Now this is where I was wrong because it is too dark for me and I would rather have gone with medium dark. But anyway, I'd still like to talk about this product.

This product comes in a packaging which closes up securely. Honestly, it's probably the best part of the whole product because nothing ruins your day like having pressed powder on the inside of your Michael Kors. It also contains a small sponge for application, making it perfect for carrying around. MAC blot is a tinted pressed powder which as the name suggests is for touch ups during the day. Lately, with my Inglot Mattifying Makeup Base, my makeup has been staying on quite well before blotting is required, but by lunch time a touch up is definitely needed. I use this powder as a setting powder after applying my foundation and for touch ups. The powder comes in different shades including light, medium, medium dark, dark and deep dark. 

The powder helps control oil and claims to be non-acnegenic which is amazing because with acne prone skin, I don't need any products clogging my pores. Usually, I have to use it a few times during the day as I get pretty oily after about an hour. I really like the product, but I am unsure if it is worth the price tag.

Price - approx. €25.
Likes - reduces shine and mattifies the skin.
Dislikes - pricey.
Verdict - not repurchasing.
Available - MAC stores/counters, MAC online.

Do you have a fave setting and blotting powder? Let me know.
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Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Review: SheaMoisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Leave-in Conditioner

SheaMoisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Leave-in Conditioner
SheaMoisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Leave-in Conditioner Review
SheaMoisture for dry natural or transitioning hair

Back in March, I posted about my latest beauty buys and told you all about how I finally found a store which sells SheaMoisture products in Barcelona. Since starting my transition to natural hair, I have watched countless videos where SheaMoisture products were used and always wanted to try them out because everyone seems to have such great things to say about them. Now, I am finally no longer a SheaMoisture virgin, and my first review is on the Jamaican Black Castor Oil Leave-in Conditioner.

This is my first leave-in conditioner which comes in a jar and to be honest I quite like it. There isn't the need to touch the bottle with stained hands because you need more product, which means no clean up needed after. I was excited to try this product because my girl Shannon from UK Curly Girl loves it, so I picked up the 500ml jar since it was the only size available.

The product contains natural ingredients such as Shea Butter, Jamaican Black Castor Oil, Peppermint and more. It smells so amazing and you do not need a whole lot, although I personally am quite heavy handed with leave-ins because my hair is so dry. From the very first day I used it, I could tell it made a difference because it left my hair moisturized and soft. Usually my hair gets dry again after a day but this product properly hydrates my hair and gives it life for a few days. I have been using this non-stop since I got it and my friends have commented on how much better my hair looks. I think it is perfect for any curly hair type be it relaxed, transitioning or natural. 

For me, the product will last about 4-5 months, so even at €15 a jar, it is worth the result it gives. Although I wouldn't say no if this brand was slightly cheaper in Barcelona since there are lots of products I want to try.

Overall Summary
Price - €15.
Likes - moisturizes the hair and leaves it soft and healthy looking.
Dislikes - pricey.
Verdict - repurchasing.
Available - SheaMoisture, Diva Beauty Supplier.

What are you favourite SheaMoisture products?
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Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Travel: Visiting Spain {Aragon & Castilla-la Mancha}

About 3 weeks ago I tweeted I'd be soon going on vacation and told you to follow me on snapchat (styleofcolours) if you're interesting in seeing a bit of Spain and what I get up to. I had a week and a half off work and we had planned our first Spain road trip. We knew for sure we were visiting Toledo and Madrid, but the rest of the locations were open to discussion depending on how we felt.

Same as with our France Trip, we rented a car, booked a hotel and off we went. We were extremely lucky to have gotten a big car {the Opel Zafira} which was very comfortable for the long distance and we arrived to Toledo without being extremely tired. Our trip was a total of 6 days, and we ended up visiting Madrid, Toledo, Guadalajara and Zaragoza.

I had been to Madrid before for a 1 day trip and was happy to be back. We visited the Prado Museum and the Royal Palace of Madrid. Both of these sites were beautiful although I found the Royal Palace a bit more interesting as I'm usually not a fan of museums. In Toledo, we did a lot of walking around and stopped by the Catedral de Toledo, Alcazar, Cristo de la Luz and the Monasterio de San Juan de los Reyes. We weren't so lucky with the weather for the day trips to Madrid and Toledo but we were still able to visit quite a few places. In Zaragoza we went to the Aljaferia Palace and to the Cathedral and Tapestry Museum. It was a sunny and beautiful day, and the perfect way to end the trip.

Even though I shared basically our entire trip on Snapchat, I thought I'd share some snaps on the blog as well. I hope you enjoyed the pictures and it inspires you to come visit Spain.

Where would you recommend I visit next?
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Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Review: Inglot Mattifying Under Makeup Base

Inglot Mattifying Under Makeup Base
Inglot Mattifying Primer Review

Primers set a great base when applying foundation for any skin type, for oily skin I think this is a product you cannot skip. I've been searching for the perfect primer for a while and from all the drugstore ones I've tried, some of you may remember the Rimmel Stay Matte being my absolute favourite. Well, that was true up until my skin went crazy and even the Rimmel primer wasn't cutting it for me. That was when I went to the inglot counter and asked for a sample of their mattifying primer. I tested this out and it was working a lot better for me so I decided to get the full sized product to give it a proper try.

The Inglot Mattifying Under Makeup Base comes in a 30ml black tube which makes it easy to use the product. The product itself is a matte slightly opaque cream which when applied to the skin mattifies it and sucks up all the excess oil. The sales rep at the counter kept letting me know this was for extremely oily skin when I was purchasing it; and this I agree with, because it is so mattifying that if you use this on normal skin, it would probably just look horrible or flake or something. Even for very oily skin like mine, it is recommended you use a pea-sized amount when applying.

When applying the product, it has a silicone feel but I love that it smoothens the skin and pores setting the base for your foundation. What I found was that it makes applying foundation with a makeup sponge difficult. It isn't sticky per say, but the foundation tends to become patchy if you are not careful. This is usually corrected if you need full coverage and are using more than one layer, but if you just need light coverage then I would suggest using a buffing brush. 

Overall, I like this primer because it makes my foundation hold for 4 hours before I have to blot, which in comparison to the 2 hours my MAC Studio Fix Fluid is now holding is quite impressive in my opinion. I don't know why my skin is in oil production overdrive, but hopefully it will pass.

Overall Summary
Price - approx. €27.
Likes - absorbs excess oil and mattifies the skin.
Dislikes - makes applying foundation difficult.
Verdict - repurchasing.
Available - Inglot counters/stores, Inglot online.

Have you tried the Inglot Mattifying Makeup Base? Which is your fave mattifying primer for oily skin?
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