The product junkie club Spring 2018

We decided to have yet another challenge & I write we because I got brainstorming help from one of my curl friends!

This challenge is starting to become a yearly thing for me and this time we have more curlfriends joining welcome Hispaneek

A few ideas for the challenge

  1. This is a freestyle challenge so each one of us brings a personal twist to it.
  2. There are no forbidden products, all you need to do is test your old products and if you need help deciding whether to use them or not ask the rest of the group and we might be able to help.
  3. Organize your products by categories.

The old products

  • Garbage bin: those with smells or ingredients that We hate and the very old ones, let’s say older than a year must go in the bin. *If you don’t remember when you bought a product it is best to send it to the bin. I ended up with a huge bag of this kind that was discarded.
  • The “I like you, but forgot about you” bin: Self explanatory, basically products we liked even holy grails but stopped using in favor of our excessive hair product shopping. Prioritize to finish these ones first.
  • The Swap/gift box: Here I include products that other naturals loved but that somehow did not become a favorite for me; but that have a good quality and/or overall good reviews. This serves 2 purposes: making another curly happy and if you can’t swap it give it as a present and help to reduce waste, might be your curl friend just found a Holy grail thanks to you. This can also apply to unopened products that you have failed to use due to whatever reason but you think a fellow curly can love. I have received a few nice things from fellow curlies already and it really did make me very happy.
    • This challenge is open to everybody, everywhere. It is more like a club of curly friends who shop too much.

      Our hasthtag #productjunkieclub2018

      Our Ethos: shop smarter & more consciously

      Our Goal: reduce waste and in the process save money or invest our money only in good products suited to our hair type.

      A few ideas to get you started to clear out the old to make room for the new

      1. Group products by brand and use them together on the same wash day according to your hair needs & routines (try the same wash day at least 2 times in a row, if you like it continue the same routine until finishing the products or if you need or want a change).
      2. Repurchase of Holy Grails is allowed, so don’t worry you can keep your curls happy.
      3. Have a budget idea: setting up a budget is up to you, but using the base of another challenge I participated in (& failed miserably at) aim for $30, £30, €30 a week or the equivalent in your local currency, or whatever sum you can afford for hair care products. This is just a guideline.
      4. Buying products to complete existing hair lines is ideal. You can also choose to not buy anything so the budget goes from 0-30 depending on your intent. My personal intent is to reduce waste, so it makes sense for me to purchase less items and aim for zero expense, obviously this did not happen but for a few short months; once my holy grails ran out I repurchased mercilessly but lifestyle changes do take time!
      5. Don’t give up!

      Shopping (saving) ideas

      1. Take advantage of seasonal sales for your favorite products.
      2. Enter giveaways.
      3. Get a subscription box, I joined one for £20 pounds plus shipping & I got at least 5 full sized products in each box to try at an accesible price. I have still have yet to try many of them, but the ones I have tried so far have been very good and at a fraction of their retail price.
      4. 2 empties allow you to purchase one completely new product you have not tried before and empty holy grails can always be replaced as they empty so your curls are always on point.
      5. Look for eco friendly packaging when possible to reduce waste too.

      If you want more info about these shopping hacks let me know in the comments section, or on my instagram.

      Happy, conscious shopping!

      P.S. This is not a competition, but a collective effort to improve our consumer habits as a curly community.

      Share your findings positive or negative but always saying something nice, if you follow me on IG The Hair Lab you know I am all about positive vibes so just be kind when sharing the fails, be kind to yourself & others in this curly hair adventure.

      Other curly girls who have joined me since the beginning in this effort to shop more responsibly are

      Curlymamaxx
      Curlysue291

      Feel free to follow their accounts for inspo & great tips.

      We have had our ups & downs but little by little we are getting there.

      May the odds be ever in your favor” may The Hunger Product Junkie Games begin.

      May the force be with you

      Hi my name is Lelia and I am a product junkie.

      Experiment #2:Carefree Hair or Naked Hair

      In my first post I wrote about observation being the first step in the scientific method, well in the natural hair community is very common to use a lot of products in our hair, who does not love to discover new ways to get our hair on point? Well today’s experiment will help you do that and it’s not as pricey as you think.

      In general knowing how to care for our hair comes with a lot of trial and error, but knowing some information can help us make it a more efficient and pleasant task (and as a byproduct reduce the curly hair tax every naturalista has to pay, a.k.a. The 47 Million hair product tax)

      1. Type of Shampoo
      2. Type of Conditioner
      3. Type of Weather conditions we live in
      4. Humectants
      5. Antihumectants
      6. Gels
      7. Hair cream

      …and I could keep going, but the number one thing we need to know is our hair.

      There are many hair properties we should take into account:

      1. Hair density
      2. Texture
      3. Curl pattern
      4. Porosity
      5. Length

      …and the best way to get to know those things is seeing how our hair behaves when it’s in a clean undisturbed state, for this purpose I decide to try simply washing and conditioning my hair with basic Suave Shampoo & Conditioner.

      The pros

      1. Short styling time
      2. Fast air drying
      3. Super defined curls, coils and waves

      First day hair was simply amazing, it dried it a way I had not seen before and I really liked the shape, also it took very little time to be ready and it was dry after about 2 hours which for low porosity + High density hair is quite fast. I saw a lot of S patterns of curls and O patterns and an amazing curl definition.
      The cons

      1. Too many tangles
      2. Dryness
      3. Longer time in next wash day (oops detangling time)

      After day 2 hair it as simply downfall in the sense that the hair was very tangled, it felt somewhat dry and could not stay any longer without product so I oiled the hair in the 2 and used a hair cream to style on day 3. Left the hair undisturbed for as long as I could bear with it and washed it again after 6 days. I normally wash my hair every 3 days but was curious to see how long I could prolong the wash day.

      The Conclusion

      Asides from learning certain qualities about my hair such as:

      1. Hair prone to tangling
      2. Dry hair
      3. Multiple curl patterns: loose curls on the front and crown area, well defined curls on the sides and perfect coils on the nape of the neck

      I also liked the aesthetics of my hair without leave on hair products.

      I liked naked hair because my hair actually looked really pretty and I reduced my styling time considerably and probably will try it again but with a few modifications:

      1. Add deep conditioner to the routine (to tackle dryness)
      2. Blow dry instead of air dry (reduce the tangles)
      3. In case of tangles or excessive dryness cowash on second day hair

      The reason I have 2 names for it is that after I saw the results I found a couple videos on YouTube with “naked hair” vs my “carefree” and the ideas to improve it next time came from this video in particular.

      Naked natural hair
      Honestly, I decided to not follow any natural hair “must dos” because  I was starting to get tired of the excessive amount of care and time it takes and wanted a change.

      I did not  expect my hair to look good enough, but to my surprise it was one of my best high volume hairstyles ever!

      On my next post I will write about my next wash day and the reason why is probably better to use natural hair as a one day thing and not a full week like I tried.