Skincare Review: Jordan Samuel Skin

Today I feature my favorite cleanser of all time, The Jordan Samuel Skin: The After Show Treatment Cleanser.

It is a gel to oil formula with a citrus/fruity scent, not overpowering Just sensory enhancing.

Cleansing my face is a pleasure with this. It includes ingredients such as olive, jojoba and grape seed oils which are perfect for a first cleanse used in removing makeup, other notable ingredients are sugarcane, willow bark and apple extracts which provide gentle exfoliation.

I use it as a first cleanse most times but I also use it as my second cleanse sometimes. It’s a very versatile & enjoyable product! I just repurchased a bigger size replacement as this one is empty.
(Pic was taken before opening, also love the elegant packaging)

Have you tried Jordan Samuel Skin? Let me know in the comments

The After Show Treatment Cleanser

Mental Health Awareness Month

For mental health awareness month share with you some facts about depression a common illness worldwide with more than 322 million people affected according to data from the world health organization.

Depression is not just a temporary blues or a usual mood fluctuation and short lived emotional response to challenges in everyday life, it is an illness that often goes undiagnosed because of lack of awareness and stigma. Depression can be mild, moderate or severe and can seriously impair the ability of a person to function at work, school or in the family.

There is no blood test or imaging technique than can give us a diagnosis of depression so we need to rely on the symptoms to make a diagnosis, some of these symptoms are depressed or sad mood, loss of interest and enjoyment, and reduced energy leading to less activity for at least 2 weeks. If you feel you might have depression do not be afraid to contact your healthcare provider to seek treatment.

You are not alone and it can be treated and you can feel better. Treatment options include: medication, therapy and group therapy. Your healthcare provider will help you decide which treatment option is best for depending on the type and severity of depression you have and can help you have an accurate diagnosis which is key to receiving treatment. Say no to the stigma around mental health, because mental illness has a biological origin just as any other visibly physical illness.

Please know that depression is not a flaw of character and it does not have to last forever. If you have any questions, leave them in the comments, as you know I’m a physician and while no blog post can replace a medical consult I’m here for you, you’re not alone.

A useful resource is the ADAA (Anxiety & Depression association of America) if you live in the United States. #breakthestigma

Dr. L

Transitioning Curly Hair: Budget Friendly Products with Protein

This blog post contains affiliate links, at no cost to you it will help support the content of this blog.

Once you have started your curly hair journey you might start noticing what your hair likes and needs.

One of the things transitioning hair likes and needs is protein. How much and how often will depend on each individual but since there is heat damage to contend with, the odds are that some amount of protein will be beneficial.

The reason protein is important is because it helps replenish your hair from the inside out, helping to fill in the gaps of damage created by heat and as a by product it will help make your hair look curlier.

There are 3 types of hair classified by porosity (not the topic of this post, but I want to give you a small idea). Low porosity hair is hair that doesn’t need a lot of protein, in fact protein can have a negative effect for this type of hair. Medium porosity hair can handle protein well without detriment. High porosity hair needs a lot of protein, usually heat damaged hair is high porosity; but don’t just assume that because you have heat damage you will have high porosity hair as this is very individual.

I’m writing this post with the assumption that high porosity hair = heat damage but that is not always the case. If you want more details on porosity leave me a comment and we can discuss the topic further on a separate post.

My hair is low porosity now so I no longer use any of the products I’m listing except for the shampoo and sometimes the gel, just an FYI.

Shea Moisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen & Restore Shampoo: This is a sulfate free shampoo that will leave your curls clean without stripping them, while cleansing the scalp very well. It can be used as often as you like or feel you need to.

Shea Moisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen & Restore Conditioner: This conditioner will prepare your hair for your deep treatment mask as it will help you detangle your hair before applying the intense repair conditioner. It’s an optional step in your routine, but I highly recommend it.

Shea Moisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen & Restore Treatment Masque: This Masque will intensely repair your hair by helping in filling in the gaps in your curls created by heat damage, you can leave it on for 30 minutes covered with a plastic cap then rinse fully and proceed to style.

Shea Moisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen & Restore Leave In Conditioner: The leave in conditioner will help maintain moisture and hydration to your locks. How to use: On soaking wet hair, divided in 4-6 sections, apply a small amount of the leave in conditioner, you can then follow up with a gel.

Eco Style Black Castor & Flaxseed Oil Styling Gel: I used to love this gel during my transition, it contains the perfect balance between protein and moisture. The protein that this gel contains is Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, any product with this ingredient contains protein. How to use: Once you have applied your leave in conditioner apply in small sections using your fingers either in a hand praying motion or raking them through your strands.

I hope this list of protein rich product basics can help you in your journey; if you are unsure as to whether or not a product contains protein, look for the word “hydrolyzed” which usually accompanies protein. Also look for products that are repairing or strengthening as this usually means they contain protein.

Your Shopping List:

  1. Shea Moisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen & Restore Shampoo
  2. Shea Moisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen & Restore Conditioner
  3. Shea Moisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen & Restore Treatment Masque
  4. Shea Moisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen & Restore Leave In Conditioner
  5. Eco Style Black Castor & Flaxseed Oil Styling Gel

Curly Hair Essentials For Beginners

Where do we start our curly hair journey? Well, if you have made it this far, it means you have decided – or are close to deciding – to wear your curls natural and that you are no longer considering using heat or relaxers. But where to begin?

There are a couple of questions I get asked often enough in my socials: Which products should I use? How do I use them? Where should I start? That is what I am about to write today:

My Favorite Products for Beginners in the Curly Hair Journey

Kinky Curly Knot Today Leave in Conditioner:
Its purpose is to detangle and condition your hair right after you have washed it. This is easily my favorite product in the whole world. It is my holy grail that I use religiously up to this day to keep my hair happy and hydrated.

Kinky Curly Knot Today Leave in Conditioner

Kinky Curly Curling Custard:
Its purpose is to give definition to your curls and make them last for more than one day. You first apply the leave in conditioner, then you apply a small amount of curling custard to your hand and glide your fingers through your hair while shaking them ever so slightly.

Kinky Curly Curling Custard

Kinky Curly Come Clean Shampoo:
Its purpose is to cleanse your scalp – and your scalp only. The right way to shampoo your hair is important when you have curly hair. Do not bunch up your hair on top of the head, because this causes tangles. Instead, massage the regular amount of shampoo you would normally use on your scalp and, if you can, get a shampoo brush to help with the process of cleansing your scalp. The hair strands will be cleansed by the foam as you rinse your hair. There is no set frequency of washing, but I recommend using this shampoo no more often than once a week to keep the scalp clean. If you wash more frequently, I can recommend other shampoos than you can use more often. Just leave me a comment!

Kinky Curly Come Clean Shampoo

Shea Moisture Manuka Honey & Mafura Oil Intensive Hydration Masque:
The purpose of deep conditioning is to intensely moisturize and strenghten your hair. Apply the Masque right after the shampoo or conditioner (optional but highly recommended) and leave it on for 30 minutes to an hour, depending on how dry your hair feels. I recommend starting with 30 minutes and increase the time on the next wash day, if your hair still feels too dry.

Shea Moisture Manuka Honey & Mafura Oil Intensive Hydration Masque

Shea Moisture Manuka Honey & Mafura Oil Intensive Hydration Conditioner:
Its purpose is to detangle and prepare the hair for the Deep Conditioner. Apply it right after the shampoo, and detangle using a tangle teezer. Divide your hair into four sections, and detangle each section by starting at the ends and working your way toward the roots.

Shea Moisture Manuka Honey & Mafura Oil Intensive Hydration Conditioner

I hope this post has been helpful in getting you started with a few essentials for your curly hair routine. The process of finding the right product is a little more complex than one single shopping list, but we have to start somewhere, right?

These are all products that I regularly use and that I have been using for years without any problems. I find them ideal for any beginner in the curly hair journey.

Just remember that each curly head is different. What works perfectly for me might not work for you, and that is perfectly normal. The more you know your hair, the better your chances are to find the right product for you on your own. If you have any questions, please feel free to leave me a comment.



Tips and tricks for Hair Growth

Genetics are an important factor on the hair growth rate of hair, according to The American Academy of Dermatology hair grows in average 1/2 inch per month. This number can vary with age, some health conditions and overall health; ultimately how fast your hair grows is determined by our genes however there are things we can do to reach our maximum hair growth potential.

Scalp massages 3-5 nights per week or every night if you prefer. I use righteous roots oils because it’s my fave but you can choose whichever oil you prefer.

Check for nutrient deficiencies, make an appointment with you GP for a check-up if your hair is not growing as it used to; since health problems such as iron deficiency affect hair growth. Drink lots of water, staying well hydrated is not only great for our hair but also for our overall health.Have a Healthy diet, what we eat affects our skin and hair health. 

Protect your curls at night to prevent breakage, use a satin or silk pillowcase, a satin bonnet, a silk or satin scarf any of these will help keep your curls intact at night and free of breakage. I have satin pillowcases from osocurly, thehappyhairco and kitsch in case you need recommendations.

Use a cotton t-shirt or microfiber towel to dry you hair to prevent breakage.

Use vitamins and supplements only if you need them, a GP can help you figure out what’s best for you, do not fall for the trap of magical hair growth vitamins that promise results but can instead cause health problems or interact poorly with your medications.

Use shampoo, if you only cowash and you notice your hair is not growing, this might be the cause since the scalp is not properly cleansed. Don’t forget to clarify at least once a month to deeply remove product build up, oil, dirt and sebum.Exfoliate your scalp, I’m currently loving the inkey list Salicylic acid exfoliating scalp treatment; I use it once a week or every 2 weeks before I shampoo. You can also use a physical exfoliant salt based for example, but I’m currently loving chemical exfoliants all over.

I hope these tips help you in your hair growth journey.

Anita Grant Vanilla Dry Oil Spray Review

The Anita Grant Vanilla Dry Oil Spray is a lush addition to my combination skin (oily/dry) that absorbs easily and leaves my skin feeling silky smooth and smelling amazing.

I apply a few pumps to my neck, arms and legs after showering or bathing (in winter) and I can’t be happier with my results, even my husband has commented on how pleasant the smell is.

It features a very short ingredient list which I love; with caprylic/capric triglicerides derived from coconut oil, jojoba oil which is the most similar oil to our sebum and organic vanilla, delish!

You can also use it for your curly hair, I haven’t gotten around to doing this yet because I love it so much on my skin so I’m kinda saving it; but when I do you’ll be the first to know my impressions, I think it will make for an excellent preshampoo treatment based on the ingredients alone. 

To find the Vanilla Dry Oil just click here on my affiliate link at no cost to you: Anita Grant Vanilla Dry Oil

Cheers! Dr. Lelia

Product Review: Ylang-Ylang Floral water

Technicurl Datasheet
ylang ylang floral Water
Manufacturer Anita Grant
Main Ingredient Cananga Odorata
Product Type Refresher
Price Range $$
Ingredient list Pasteurised Ylang-Ylang Floral Water (Cananga Odorata)

I have been using Anita Grant’s Ylang Ylang floral water for a couple of months now and I can tell you, I’m in love.

Styled with Ylang-Ylang floral water, photo 1st published on Instagram

It’s perfect for refreshing day 2 or 3 curls, for prolonging wash day by giving the scalp a clean feeling and removing any itchiness that might be present for at least 2 full days.

Another name for Ylang Ylang is cananga odorata and one of the reasons I think it’s so great for the scalp is that this plant has been purported to have sebum regulating features for the skin and scalp. It is also said that it contributes to hair growth and while I have no hard evidence of this claim, I have noticed my hair growing like weeds lately! Coincidence or causality? It’s up to you to find out for yourself but I think there is something at play here and it’s good.

If you would like to try this floral water you can find it here: Anita Grant

This review contains an affiliate link which gives me a small commission should you decide to make a purchase on the site, as you know me this fact however does not affect my opinion and the review is objective. I have not been payed in advance to write it.

Curly Hair Washday

Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links which lend me a small commision at no cost to you, this does not influence my opinion about the products included in this post.

Hello friends it’s been a while since I posted on here so I will keep it short and sweet.

I like to clarify my hair about once a month and this particular wash day wash all about cleansing and moisture.

I first started with flora & curl clay wash: I first dampened my hair and detangled it so that the clay could be distributed properly. I useed about 8 tablespoons of clay because I have long hair, but you can use less depending or your hair density and lenght. I mixed it with warm water until it had a creamy, toothpaste like consistence and followed to apply it in twists, left it on for 15 minutes then rinsed with abundant warm water.

Shampoo: Kinky curly come clean, the best claryfing shampoo you’ll ever buy!

Conditioner: The Mane Choice Easy on the curls detangling conditioner, I like to follow up my shampoo with a regular conditioner to detangle and prep for deep conditioning and this one has slip to die for.

Deep Conditioner: The Mane Choice Tropical Moringa Sweet Oil & Honey Mask, jam packed with hydrating and moisturizing ingredients perfect for a clarying wash day like this one.

Leave in and Gel: The Mane Choice Do It Fro The Culture Accomplished Leave In and The Mane Choice Do It Fro The Culture Bold Buttery Gel, to get the best of these products you can afford to be heavy handed which I love as I don’t have to worry about my curls being weighed down.


How to create your wash day routine in 5 easy steps

Step 1. Don’t panic, we’ve all been there.

Step 2. Get to know your hair, is it fine or thick? Wavy, curly, coils, kinky? Low density or high density, low or high porosity. It seems complicated but take it one at a time and you will be just fine.

Step 3. Identify all the parts of wash day that you can find in detail here



Deep conditioning



Step 4. Products: here things get tricky because there are so many to choose from but don’t give in to your inner product junkies and keep it simple.

Step 5. Take your time: finding the right balance sometimes takes time but once you have identified all of the above, wash days will be pleasant and automatic.

My complicated relationship with social media

Good day, WordPress friends!

A few things that you might know about me because they are obvious: if you follow me on Instagram dr_vasquez_md, is that I’m not very good with the social part of media, and with the media part of social as well.

It was fun at first but then it became a chore as I started to follow certain guidelines.

I noticed that creating my posts was taking longer time and to be honest I was not in my element. This does not mean I will give up, but it does pose a question…why was I using Instagram in the first place?

I thought Instagram would boost my readership here, but it did not, rarely anyone clicks on my link in bio. I tried too hard to get the perfect selfies, the product showcases and ultimately ended up neglecting my blog post content creation, which I enjoy more than taking selfies.

I then stopped using Instagram altogether, because it was not fun anymore and I felt that I had no time for that and missed a few good opportunities to do collaborations with people whom I admire. Last December I returned to instagram, and I find myself enjoying it again.

I returned to a book by Sir Ken Robinson and this book helped me to get back on track with my blogging goals. The key point of this book is about finding your element. It’s rather difficult to explain briefly, but it is a good read if you need to refocus.

My Science based Hair blogging goals are to find my element and stay there and produce content there, but also to have fun while doing it.

I share with you now, my first attempt at reinventing myself as a blogger of sorts in a visual media format, as an experimental approach to determine what I enjoy about content creation asides from writing long wordy pieces for this WordPress blog.

I hope you like this raw edit, mixing lots of hair shots & nature to reflect the permanence of things while constantly changing at the same time.

Your essence remains the same regardless of looks, in the same way the cherry trees blossom at a specific time in Spring and they stay the same tree the whole year round.

You will blossom when the time is right and it’s never is too late to bloom.