Tag Archives: hair growth

Swanson Bamboo Extract: 2-month Update

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I first started using bamboo extract two months ago. I had mixed one-month results. I bought two bottles. Each bottle contains 60 vegetarian capsules and will last 2 months since you only need to take one pill a day. Given that I purchased both bottles for less than $20, this supplement provides pretty good bang for your buck.

After taking this supplement for 8 weeks, my nail health has made a complete 180 turnaround. My weak, brittle nails normally break daily. This bamboo extract seemed to strengthen and lengthen them from the inside out. After only 2 weeks, my nail growth expedited exponentially. In a month’s time, the extract had lengthened my nails to the point of becoming an annoyance (needing to be cut much more frequently than before). After 2 months, I’ve noticed that the condition of my nails have improved drastically. My nails have not just become LONGER but have now become STRONGER as well.

While my hair’s thickness and volume have increased, I have had zero to staggering results. This is likely due to the fact that I have 3 different textures on my head! Watch the following video for a quick summary of my experience after taking bamboo extract for two months.

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Swanson Bamboo Extract for Hair, Skin, and Nail Health

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This blog post contains affiliate links (e.g., to Amazon, eBay, etc.),  which means that if you click on one of the product links and place an order, I’ll receive a small commission. This helps support my blog and allows me to continue to create content like this.

Thank you for your support!

Bamboo extract contains 10x the amount of silica as horsetail grass. This is good news for those of us who are (ahem) no longer twenty-somethings as silica levels naturally decline as we age. As a result, supplementing with quality, natural silica like that found in bamboo extract can help to support and improve one’s hair, skin, and nail health.

I’ve heard so much about bamboo extract in the last couple of years, that I finally decided to take the plunge. I was so excited that I purchased two bottles in the hopes that in a month or two, I’d have long, luxurious hair. Hey, it could happen! Don’t crush this naturalista’s “long hair don’t care” dream! Well, since nothing beats a failure but a try, I decided to give bamboo extract a go.

Although the bamboo extract pill is on the larger side, because it comes in the form of a gel cap, it’s very easy to swallow. After taking this supplement for a month (29 days), I didn’t experience any skin improvements. However, I eat clean, drink plenty of water, exercise six (sometimes seven) days a week, and already have pretty decent skin. I did see a marked improvement in the condition of my weak, brittle nails, though.

My nails are so fragile that they tend to break just by looking at them! But, after only a week or two, my nails started to grow scarily fast. So much so that I trimmed them twice in one week! Even when I accidentally caught my left thumb nail in the zipper of a beloved jacket, resulting in being forced to cut the nail down to the nub, 50% of the nail grew back to it’s original length in only 4 days. It would have normally taken almost two weeks for that to happen with my super thin nails! After a month of taking bamboo extract, my nails are stronger, longer, and much more resilient.

I also noticed that the bamboo extract increased my hair’s thickness and volume. And, while this supplement is no magic bullet, it did help (some of) my hair to grow at a faster rate. However, due to all the different textures on my head, that didn’t seem to happen for all of my strands. (Sigh)

Watch the following video to view a video summary of my results after taking bamboo extract for a month. It also reveals my final length check …

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MineralRich: Two-month Hair Growth Results + My Mini-twist Setback!!!

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This blog post contains affiliate links (e.g., to Amazon, eBay, etc.),  which means that if you click on one of the product links and place an order, I’ll receive a small commission. This helps support my blog and allows me to continue to create content like this.

Thank you for your support!


Two months ago, I started taking MineralRich liquid vitamins from Maximum Living for hair growth. My 1-month results were moderate but hopeful. Most of my hair grew between 0.5″ – 1.0″  over the course of a month. My crown grew the most at 1.5″. However, I was massaging my front edges with castor oil, so I think that may account for the extra growth there. Nevertheless, I was optimistic about taking the supplement for another month. To expedite my progress, I decided to micro-twist my hair for the last two weeks of use. I made chunky twists in the back for the first row since my hair grows the slowest there, and I wanted it to be easier to take the twists out in the rear of my head. I made small twists in the rows above toward the middle of my head. Then, I made micro twists from my crown forward. After a week, I pulled the twists up into a french roll.


Mini Twists (Day #1)


Mini Twists (Back of Hair)


Mini Twists (Day #7)



Mini Twists
(French Roll with a Barrette)

I only had to moisturize my hair twice during 12 days, and that was largely due to the products I used. I wet each section prior to twisting with distilled water I put in a spray bottle, then I layered on some of Roots of Nature’s feather whipped curl cream. For the take-down process, I spritzed each twist with my lavender spritz and then gently unwound each twist. I initially tried to do a length check without unraveling my mini twists, but it was too difficult to measure, and my measurements seemed inaccurate. So, I decided to remove my mini twists a couple of days early so that I could do a proper length check. However, after just a couple of measurements at the front and sides of my hair, I feared that I had experienced a lot of breakage. When I compared my current hair measurements to my previous month’s measurements, my fears were confirmed!

On top of all that, the ends of my hair had gotten so tangled in some sections that I had to lop off as much as 2″ just to salvage the rest of my strands. Thankfully, my lavender spritz removed 85-90% of the knots in my hair, but a few could only be cut out! I lost 0.5″ – 1″ in the front, sides, and back of my hair. My crown experienced the most breakage … a whopping 5″! Likely due to the fact that I had made micro twists from my crown forward. Sigh.

I think the major mistake I made was in making the twists TOO small. My fine strands just couldn’t handle it. Thank God I only kept the twists in for two weeks. I can’t imagine the amount of damage I may have caused if I left them in longer.

For a more complete overview of my hair setback (as well as my closing remarks concerning my experience taking MineralRich), watch my video below.



If you have fine or super fine hair like I do, you should probably avoid mini and micro twists. The likely hair breakage and damage that could ensue is REAL!


Filed under Length Checks, Product Reviews

MineralRich: One-month Hair Growth Results

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This blog post contains affiliate links (e.g., to Amazon, eBay, etc.),  which means that if you click on one of the product links and place an order, I’ll receive a small commission. This helps support my blog and allows me to continue to create content like this.

Thank you for your support!


Maximum Living: Mineralrich, 32 oz


Three or four years ago I stumbled upon a YouTube video from Honesty Love that recommended MineralRich liquid vitamins from Maximum Living for hair growth. Then, I totally forgot all about them … until recently when I was browsing YouTube and just happened to stumble upon another video from Honesty Love. Given all of the hair damage I’ve sustained from my local hard water, I decided to give these vitamins a try!

They have two varieties: (1) MineralRich and (2) MineralRich Plus Aloe. Both are around the same price (~$23). However, because I can’t stand the taste of aloe vera juice, I opted for the original MineralRich supplement. Both 32 oz. bottles contain only 30 calories per 1 oz (2 TBS) serving as well as identical daily values for each vitamin. MineralRich contains a proprietary blend of macro and trace minerals (e.g., vitamin B-12, silica, biotin, magnesium, selenium, chromium, et al) for total body nutrition. However, many people that have taken this liquid vitamin (i.e., for mood boosting or to improve their overall health) have noticed significant hair growth. Yes, that’s right! Hair growth from a liquid vitamin.



Take 1 oz. (2 tbsp.) daily. Mix or follow with an 8 oz. glass of water. For nutritional use only. Discontinue if allergic reaction occurs.

The Challenge:

MineralRich comes in a 32 oz bottle. Because the daily portion is 1 oz (2 TBS), one bottle will last 32 days, just over a month. I decided to put this potential hair growth aid to the test for a month (32 days). Here are my results …


Summary of Results:

When: July 12, 2016 – August 12, 2016 (32 days)
What: MineralRich Liquid Vitamins
Frequency: Daily (7x per week)

Starting Length (FRONT): 13.50″
Starting Length (RIGHT): 12.00″ (shortest strand) – 13.00″ (longest strand)
Starting Length (LEFT): 12.00″ (shortest strand) – 13.00″ (longest strand)
Starting Length (CROWN): 16.00″ (shortest strand) – 17.00″ (longest strand)
Starting Length (BACK): 11.50″ (shortest strand) – 12.00″ (longest strand)

Ending Length (FRONT): 14.50″

Ending Length (RIGHT): 12.50″ (shortest strand) – 13.00″ (longest strand)     

Ending Length (LEFT): 12.50″ (shortest strand) – 13.00″ (longest strand)        

Ending Length (CROWN): 16.50″ (shortest strand) – 17.00″ (longest strand)   

Ending  Length (BACK): 11.50″ (shortest strand) – 12.00″ (longest strand)       

SUMMARY: My hair grew 1.0″ in the front. However, the rest of my hair stayed the same or only grew 0.50″. 

Side Effects:

While I didn’t experience any side effects, some people have complained about having severe gas or stomach aches. However, I eat clean, exercise daily, and drink plenty of water. The instructions specifically state that the supplement should be followed by (or mixed in) 8 oz. of water. And, most people who experienced unpleasant side effects were not drinking water with (or after taking) the supplement. So, I think drinking plenty of water is key!


I am pretty underwhelmed by my mediocre results. However, I have another 1 month supply left. Since I did receive 1″ of hair growth in the front of my hair, I think I will take the other bottle I have to see if I can achieve better results with MineralRich over the next month. Fingers crossed!

Maximum Living: Mineralrich, 32 oz

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Hair Moisture 101: the ABCs of Moisturizing Natural Hair

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This blog post contains affiliate links (e.g., to Amazon, eBay, etc.), which means that if you click on one of the product links and place an order, I’ll receive a small commission. This helps support my blog and allows me to continue to create content like this.

Thank you for your support!



Moisturizing natural hair can be a challenge (to say the least). When I first Big Chopped, moisturizing my hair was easy, breezy, beautiful CoverGirl! But, as my hair grew, I noticed that I had to moisturize my hair more frequently. Once my hair reached my shoulders (when straightened), it became obvious to me that I needed to rethink my hair moisture routine. However, ever since I went back to school to pursue an advanced degree, I have had trouble keeping up with even my low-fuss hair regimen. Sometimes the busyness of life just bogs you down! So, whether you recently made the decision “to go natural” or just need a reminder (like we all do from time to time) to return to the basics, here’s some essentials to get you started (or back on track)!

Technique #1

This is the basic tenet of natural hair: moisturize and seal. But, what does that mean? It means that you should apply water (or a leave-in conditioner of your choice) to your hair. Then, you should “seal” in that moisture by applying an oil over the moisturizer. If you just apply water or a water-based moisturizer to your hair (without sealing), your hair will be left frizzy, fuzzy, and dehydrated. This is because sebum (a natural oil produced by the sebaceous glands) has more difficulty traveling down the entire hair shaft when coils and curls are present. This is due to all the twists and turns of each strand. In light of this, those of us with highly textured hair have to moisturize our tresses much more often than those with straight or wavy hair. So, moisturizing your hair without locking in that moisture is a no-no, unless you want dry, parched hair!

Technique #2

If moisturizing and sealing your hair just isn’t enough, try using the L-O-C method. L-O-C stands for Leave-in-Oil-Cream. This means that you start with a leave-in conditioner (or water-based moisturizer), seal in the moisture with an oil of your choice, and then apply a thicker, cream-based product for added moisture. The premise of the L-O-C method is that you layer products in a certain order to maximize moisture retention. If you still feel like this isn’t enough, try a variation of the method, such as L-O-C-O or playing around with the order of the cream and oil (L-C-O). By layering in multiple products, it makes it easier to keep your hair moisturized longer and keeps future moisture loss to a minimum.

Technique #3Another useful moisturizing technique is the Greenhouse Effect. This is great for rebalancing the moisture levels of dehydrated hair or reversing short-term dry hair spells. The purpose is to trap in moisture by lightly dampening hair with water, adding a natural oil, and then covering with a processing cap and satin scarf/hair bonnet. The baggy method is similar, only it allows the use of water-based moisturizers (instead of pure water) and sealants other than natural hair oils.

Whatever method you choose, don’t forget to listen to your hair. If your hair is constantly dry, you may not be moisturizing it enough. Or, you may need to analyze your product choices or the order in which you apply them. Be curious. Try one method, two, or all three!


Filed under Hair Styles & Tips

Wild Growth Hair Oil

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Thank you for your support!

When: April 1, 2014 – April 30, 2014
Coverage: Scalp & Hair
Frequency: 3x each week
Starting Length (FRONT): 10.50″
Starting Length (CROWN): 12.75″
Starting Length (RIGHT): 10.50″
Starting Length (LEFT): 10.25″
Starting Length (BACK): 9.75″
Ending Length: My hair grew 1.5″ in my crown & front of hair; 0.50″ on the sides of my hair; 0.25″ in the back of my hair.

I’ve heard a lot about Wild Growth® Hair Oil. Mostly complaints concerning the awful smell and the one thousand and one ways to cover it up! But, I also read a great deal of buzz about how effective this product is as a hair growth aid. So, after about a year and a half of going back and forth over whether to buy, I finally decided to press the “purchase” button! Wild Growth® Hair Oil is an all-natural, non-hypoallergenic product that is great for all ethnicities and hair types. It promises to condition the scalp, reduce hair breakage and split ends from root to tip, and turn dry, tangled, and hard-to-manage strands into softer, fuller, and healthier hair … that grows.

According to the instructions on the bottle, the hair oil should be used three times per week plus after washing hair (up to 4 times per week) for a hair growth boost. Persons with type 3 (curly) and 4 (coily/kinky) hair should apply the product sparingly to their scalp with the applicator tip. Then, hair should be divided into quadrants and a quarter-sized amount applied to each quadrant. Those with short hair should use less product.

Persons with type 1 and 2 hair should only apply 5-15 drops of the hair growth oil directly to their scalp. The product should be used on damp hair (after every hair wash) and then allowed to air dry. Many straight- and wavy-haired consumers recommend leaving the oil on for a few hours (or overnight) and then washing or rinsing hair later that day or the following morning.

The hair oil comes in a 4 oz. bottle with an applicator tip. I applied the product three to four times each week (usually only three times), massaged my scalp for 2 minutes, and then prepped my hair for bed/the next day. After 2 weeks, I did an unofficial mini-length check to see how the product was working, and it didn’t appear that my hair had grown at all! But, to be fair, I decided to continue to use the product until the end of the month so I could see how well the oil worked within a month’s time (a full 30 days). I never missed any of my applications.

The oil is a deep amber color with a light, citrus scent that I adore. Not sure what all the hullabaloo was about with the many posts I read about the horrible fragrance, but I think the negative feedback concerning the smell of the product is grossly exaggerated. It smells amazing to me, and it isn’t overpowering in the least. In addition, the oil has a good consistency, not thin or thick … a happy medium in between the two that makes application quick and easy.

The first few times I used the oil, I noticed how the product soothed my scalp. I did, however, have a hard time gauging whether anything was coming out of the applicator tip. Several times, I stopped to check to make sure that it was. In the future, when I use this oil, I think I will just pour it into my Roots Only bottle to ensure more even scalp coverage. I never have any problems knowing whether any product is coming out whenever I use my Roots Only bottle!

I spent $8 for this oil, but depending on where you live (and where you go to buy this product), it sells for between $8 and $14. For 4 ounces of oil, that seems a little pricey unless it delivers. But, after a month’s time, I still have half the bottle left. So, this isn’t a bad hair growth investment. After all, that’s two months’ worth of use for only eight bucks … That’s not bad at all!

After using this oil for 4 weeks, my hair grew 1.5″ in my crown and in the front of my head (where my 3C curls are), 0.50″ on the left and right side of my hair, and 0.25″ in the back. As my hair gets longer, I have definitely started to notice a trend among the three different hair types on my head: My 3C curls grow at an above-average rate (0.6″ – 0.75″/month without the use of a growth aid). My 4A coils grow at an average rate (about 0.50″/month without the use of a growth aid). My 4B kinks grow below average (about 0.25″-0.30″/month without the use of a growth aid). Nevertheless, considering how much the hair in the front and crown of my head grew, I am happy with my results. I am also interested to see how well this oil would work long-term or when used with my Roots Only bottle.

Watch the vid below for the length check I made prior to using the Wild Growth® Hair Oil as well as to see my final results.

UPDATE: Unfortunately, during my second month of usage, I had to discontinue my use of this oil as I started to develop an allergic reaction to it. I had gifted a bottle each to my mom and sister, so I checked with them to see how they were faring. My mom didn’t experience any side effects. But, my sister, before I could barely get out the words “Wild Growth® Hair Oil” said that the oil made her scalp itch like crazy. She said she had to rinse it out of her hair after only a couple of hours. When she tried to use the oil again, she experienced the same extreme unbearable itching. So, if you have sensitive skin like we do, you may want to do a skin patch test first. It’s such a shame because I really liked this oil a lot (in terms of smell, consistency, and results). Sigh.


Filed under Length Checks, Product Reviews

Flat-ironing My Medium-length Hair: 12 Months of Natural Hair Growth

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This blog post contains affiliate links (e.g., to Amazon, eBay, etc.), which means that if you click on one of the product links and place an order, I’ll receive a small commission. This helps support my blog and allows me to continue to create content like this.
Thank you for your support!

I have been natural for 12 months now. Woot! Woot! In honor of my one-year naturalversary (February 6), I decided to flat iron my hair. The last time I straightened my hair was September 2013 (five months ago). I had been natural for seven months and was curious what my natural hair would look like straightened. This time, I did a few things differently. Here’s what I did …


  1. I sectioned my hair into quadrants, lightly misted my hair with water, and detangled.
  2. I applied a 50:50 ratio of coconut oil and castor oil to each section and then two-strand twisted each quadrant into one chunky twist (for a total of 4 twists).
  3. I shampooed my hair with a sulfate-free shampoo (Pravana Hydrating Shampoo). I used very warm water and then rinsed all of my hair with cold water.
  4. I used a light protein treatment (Aphogee 2-Minute Protein Treatment). I added a processing cap, left it in for 5 minutes, and rinsed it out with cool water.
  5. I wrapped my hair in a microfiber turban and let it air dry for 30 minutes.
  6. I untwisted each section and applied Softsheen Carson’s Optimum Advanced Keratin Sealing Leave-in Conditioner to each quadrant. After that I sprayed Julep’s Top Coat for hair (a heat protectant and shine spray) to each section.
  7. I blow-dried each quadrant with my Chi Rocket hair dryer.
  8. I applied TRESemme’s Heat Tamer Spray (a heat protectant) and another dose of Julep’s Top Coat to each section.
  9. I clipped three of the quadrants out of the way, parted each quadrant into smaller sections for the sake of manageability, and then flat ironed my hair using my Babyliss Nano Titanium 1¼” flat iron. I set my flat iron to 410 degrees.
  10. It took me about 2 1/2 hours (from start to finish).


  1. I originally planned to wrap my hair before bed. But, less than 24 hours later, I already started to miss my coils. LOL! So, I decided to pin curl my hair instead with Dove’s Leave-in Smoothing Cream and a little bit of my Roots of Nature Butter Whip Coil Cream (for a light hold). 
  2. I added my satin bonnet and slept on a satin pillowcase for extra insurance.
  3. In the morning, I lightly coated my hair with coconut oil, and unpinned and separated my pin curls. I misted my hair with my DIY multi-use spritz and then layered on some Julep Top Coat for extra shine.
  4. I coated any stray, frizzy pieces with a dab of coconut oil, twirled the wayward strand around my index finger, and then gently released it.


In these pics, my hair measures about 9.50″ long.

Flat-ironed natural hair at 12 months

Flat-ironed Natural Hair at 12 Months

Pin Curls

Pin Curls

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