2014 Hair Goals & Breaking the Rules

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! Wow, I am so late, January is almost over but I have gone through a major transition. Briefly, where have I been!? Well, I moved to Atlanta, Ga for a job which I started on January 6! It was hard my first week adjusting to the new time zone and schedule of being up at 6 and *awake* all day with no nap lol. After my first week of work, I became really sick and had to miss work! I am happy to say I am feeling much better but am still hoarse. And if you all have been watching the news you all know a winter storm came through the south so I have been snowed in at home since Tuesday. I was lucky to only have a 2 hour commute in my car but others have not been so lucky so please keep them in your prayers and hope the cities with the most hardships have learned from this! 

Now onto my 2014 hair goals! If you follow me on Instagram (BesosFeron), you have seen the picture of my fro semi picked out as seen in the cover picture. I have been protective styling since November but I did not fully embrace it until the Sunday before Christmas. I went 5 weeks, not on purpose, without touching my hair! It stayed in my plaits under my wig! I had plans on co-washing it in the plaits but then I got sick and did not want to have a wet head. 

Also in the cover picture, I show myself doing a length check and have experienced much growth since October when I had my damaged ends cut; about two inches or more had to be cut. I was experiencing breakage and I believe I have resolved that issue. In my first year of being natural, I pretty much winged it and used what was available to me on the ground. I didn't know much about ingredients and I had my hair subscriptions to introduce me to new brands. In my second year of being natural, I became obsessed with all these rules and following what others had done who had extreme lengths. This was fine and all but my hair wasn't responding as well as it was my first year. If the average is 6" of hair growth a year, I only retained 4" before my cut which left me only 2" longer than where I was at on my 1 year anniversary.

All of these "natural hair rules" are not for me! In as short as three months, I have grown/retained 2" of length by taking it back to basics and going back to what I know that worked for me before I started reading all these sites with their rules and watching all these youtube videos. Now mind you, everyone is different but for me breaking some of the top rules almost everyone preaches is what I'm doing to reach my hair goals. Some of these rules are as follows:

1. Don't use a sulfate shampoo. (Mane 'n Tail Shampoo)
2. Don't use products with cones in them. (Found in Cantu argan oil leave in)
3. Don't use mineral oil! (Found in the Organics Hair Mayonnaise)
4. Use proteins sparingly. (Found in the Mane 'n Tail Shampoo/Conditioner)
5. Don't use heavy oils on your scalp! (I use castor oil)
6. Only use all natural products!

I'm sure there are more but those are the major ones I have been breaking ha I feel like a rebel and Zoe has been flourishing! I do have length goals I would like to reach but I had to take a step back and address my breakage issues. The following are my goals for the year:

1. Baby my ends by continuing to use the Cantu on wash day as an extra "L" of the LOC method to seal my ends. The cones help to create a barrier by strengthening my ends to prevent damage and retain length. I will also continue to use castor oil to seal my ends on wash day and when I re-moisturize my hair. 
2. Until it warms back up, I will continue to keep my hair protected and wig it out! When it becomes really hot, I will get Senegalese twists again as a protected style for the summer and use a heat protectant spray on them. 
3. Continue to add oil in my regimen either as a hot oil treatment or oil rinse. 
4. Try to add co-washing into my regimen in between washes. 
5. Have a bigger, disrespectful fro that is full and happy.
6. By the end of the year I would like to be past APL and on my way to BSL.

Going into my 3rd year of being natural I feel I am still learning, still making mistakes but am making corrections and doing a good job at observing and listening to my hair. If any of you would like a detailed explanation of what I did and am doing to stop/prevent breakage just leave a comment below and I'll be sure to write it up for you. Hope everyone is having a great January and hopefully my mistakes and revelations have helped someone out there! Loads of product reviews on the way and never say what you'll never do! Look at me I'm breaking all the rules now ^_^ 

Besos, Feron