Tag Archives: heatless curls

18 Months Natural: How to Flat Iron Medium-length 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!

So, I have officially been natural for a year-and-a-half! To celebrate, I decided to straighten my hair for the occasion. Here’s what I did:

  1. SHAMPOO & CONDITION. Because I have experienced several seborrheic dermatitis flare ups in the last month or two, I used my favorite product line from Aveeno: Nourish+Dandruff Control shampoo and conditioner. It’s great for sensitive scalps, as well as people with scalp conditions, like myself. I love this shampoo and conditioner because it soothes my scalp, prevents inflammation, and is still gentle on my color-treated hair! A win-win-win!  🙂 Click here for a more detailed product review.
  2. DEEP CONDITION. My absolute favorite deep conditioner is Lustrasilk’s Aloe Vera Cholesterol. It makes detangling sessions a breeze! I usually saturate my hair with the product to make sure all of my strands are coated. I gently finger detangle as I rake the product through my hair. Afterward, I cover my hair with a processing cap and sit under my hooded dryer for 20-30 minutes. Then, I rinse my hair and prep it for the next step.
  3. BLOW DRY. I spray my hair with Optimum Advanced Keratin Sealing Leave-in Conditioner. I gently comb the product through my hair and blow dry my hair with my Chi Rocket pro hair dryer on medium heat. I finish by turning on my “cool shot” button to smooth the cuticle of my hair.
  4. PRESS ‘n IRON. To further protect my hair from heat, I spray my hair with TRESemmé‎’s Thermal Creations Heat Tamer Protective Spray. I press my roots and then I flat iron my hair. I try to limit myself to two passes with my Babyliss Pro Nano Titanium flat iron, but if necessary I do a maximum of three passes. However, if a third pass is necessary, I mist my hair first with ApHogee Keratin and Green Tea Restructurizer.
  5. NIGHTTIME ROUTINE: I brush my hair to one side and wrap it around my head. I mist my hair with Julep Top Coat for hair. Then, I add a mesh wrap to keep my hair from unraveling . I secure it with a satin scarf, and top it with a satin bonnet for good measure!
  6. THE NEXT DAY: I mist my hair with Julep Top Coat for hair to prevent frizz. Then, I slowly unwrap my hair and style it.
Next Day Results ...

Final Results …

Next Day Results ...

Final Results …

Next Day Results (after unwrapping hair) ...

Next Day Results
(after unwrapping hair) …

Next Day Results (after unwrapping hair) ...

Next Day Results
(after unwrapping hair) …

My hair remained pretty straight for two days and mostly straight for seven days. Given that the temperatures have been in the upper 90s (and beyond) with a heat index over 100, I think I received pretty good results. I “touched up my hair” once because I had an event to go to and the humidity started to swell the cuticle of my hair but, after that, I let my hair do what it wanted to do and just added some heatless curls to stretch my hairstyling capabilities.

Want more details? Watch my video here to see me prep my hair in action: 

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Pin Curls on Straightened or Stretched 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!

Pin curls are similar to bantu knots, except they lay flat against the scalp. I have created them on freshly washed and previously styled hair with great results.

“Pin Curls and How to Set Them”

Source: A Girl and Her Hair, 1947

“Pin Curls and How to Set Them”

Source: A Girl and Her Hair, 1947

STEPS to the PERFECT PIN CURL

  1. If you wear your hair with a side part, create the part before you begin.
  2. Add a creamy leave-in and a hair styler with a holding agent (i.e., a gel or custard). I used Dove’s Leave-in Smoothing Cream and then layered on some of my DIY Eco Styler Custard for extra hold.
  3. Take one-inch sections of hair and create a “small loop” with your thumb and index finger.
  4. Roll the loop upwards in a spiral until you reach the roots of your hair.
  5. Pin the curl in place with a bobby (not hair) pin. If it doesn’t seem secure, you can criss-cross two bobby pins over each pin curl.
  6. Repeat this process until you have pin curled all of your hair. All of your pin curls should lay flat against your scalp.
  7. Use a mirror to make sure you do not have any loose strands. If you do, simply undo the closest pin curl, add the loose hair to it, and recreate the curl.
  8. Once hair is completely dry, remove all the pins.
  9. Gently brush curls for a retro feel. If you have fine hair like me, finger comb your pin curls instead.
  10. Style hair as desired, and enjoy!
  11. It took me about 30-35 minutes to pin curl my medium-length hair.

MAINTENANCE: I donned a satin bonnet, slept on a satin pillow, and unpinned my hair the next day. But, you could pin curl your hair and wear the style in the same day. Just make sure your hair is completely dry by testing one pin curl before you start removing all the pins. Also, try to let your hair air dry, if possible, as the use of a hair dryer will likely create unwanted frizz.

CURLY CUES

  1. Hair feel dry? Lightly mist your hair with my DIY Multi-use Spritz. But, don’t overdo it. You don’t want your hair to be damp or wet, just moisturized.
  2. Have a few frizzy strands? Coat any stray, frizzy pieces with a dab of coconut oil, twirl the wayward strand around your index finger, and then gently release it.
  3. Want extra hold? Use an alcohol-free hair spray, gel, or smoothing serum of your choice for extra insurance against frizz and flyaways.
  4. Need more shine? Layer on a hair sheen spray or serum like  Julep Top Coat for an added shine boost.
  5. Want a more wavy look? Pin curl larger sections of hair. Also, don’t be afraid to gently brush or finger comb your pin curls for a less defined/curly look.
  6. Curls look messy after take down? Be mindful of the direction that you pin curl your hair. For a more uniform look, pin curl one side of your hair clockwise and the other half counter clockwise. This will give your curls a “mirrored” effect when the style is viewed from the back.

THE RESULTS

Here are some pics of the finished style.

PIN CURLS - FRONT
Pin Curls - SIDE

To see me create pin curls, in action, watch the YouTube video below.

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

FTC Disclaimer
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 …

STRAIGHTENING STEPS

  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).

MAINTENANCE

  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.

THE RESULTS

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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