Saturday, June 19, 2010

Help Me Update

Blog family,
I am looking for suggestions on ways to update and modernize my blog. Now, I am not very computer savvy so I have no idea how to do all the fancy stuff. I could really use suggestions or instruction on a few things in the following areas:

Where to find new free blog templates
How to upload pictures and place them where I want them
How to create slide shows
How to link YouTube videos
How to create and post my own videos

Any help would be greatly appreciated :)

Lock on wit yo bad self!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

2 Years With Locks

Hello again so soon!

I am coming up on my 2 year mark with locks! Wow! The actual date isn't until June 20th but I though I would get this post in early. My locks have really come a long way. They have thickened, puffed, and are finally starting to grow longer. I have absolutely no regrets about locking my hair, only that I didn't do it long ago. I know that everyone says that but it is soo true.

I used to faithfully tighten my locks every 4 weeks for the first year until I became a DIY'er. Now, I just re-tighten when I feel like it. That is usually between 6 and 10 weeks. 10 weeks!!! I know that sounds like a long time but my hair is very slow growing and I really enjoy the new growth. I love to put my hands in my hair and feel the soft fluffy roots. I also don't really like the scalppy look of a freshly tightened head although I love the way it feels when the water runs over my scalp after a fresh retigh. I am also happy to report that I have never lost a lock! Yay! I have however, combined and added a few new ones in areas where there used to be no hair but it has now started to grow in.When I say the words 2 years, it seems like a long time, but when I think back over my journey, it went by so quickly. I look forward to each year to come.
The pictures that I have included are of the first day after install, the first year (shown with my lovely hubby), and today, 4 days before my 2 year lock anniversary. I tried to put these pictures in order from beginning to now but blogger changed them when I published the post so just bare with me please:)
***Feel free to click on the pictures for an enlarged view to see better detail. ***

Until next time,
Lock on wit yo bad self!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Introducing the Graduate

So.....Introducing...Hibiscus Niki who now holds a Master's Degree in Health Care Administration...YAY! This is the reason for my absence as of late. I have been busting my butt to finish my work so that I could participate in the commencement ceremony on June 13, 2010. My family is also in the middle of a big transition as we move from one Army duty station to the next. I look forward to posting more regularly again now that some of the stress has been relieved.

Lock on wit yo bad self!


Saturday, May 22, 2010

The Birth of Two Baby Locks

Hello Blog Fam,

I have been MIA because my family is in the middle of a move from Honolulu, HI to Raleigh, NC :( I am currently on a long stay with my parents in Cleveland, OH for the summer while we look for a home to purchase in North Carolina.

As far as my hair goes, everything is still the same. I was getting tired of my locks for a while and thinking of starting over until I completed my re-ti this evening. Now my scalp is feeling refreshed and I am back in love with my locks. Although I love my fuzzies and the way my hair looks when it needs to be tightened, there is no feeling better than having a freshly tightened head and letting the water run over my scalp. i t! Better yet, I was able to start two new locks on my hair line. My mother, my sister, and I all have a thinning hair lines. I was a bit bumbed about that but then the fuzzies started growing in and Yay, two new locks are born. I am now thinking that the thinning had less to do with genetics and more to do with the danaging affects of a relaxer, LOL! Starting the new locks coupled with all the many compliments that I have received since being in town is giving me reason to continue to have patience and to continue on this journey that I so love....I just get side tracked sometimes (hee hee!)

My hair line still has some growing to do but it is looking much less stressed with the addition of the baby locks. Now my followers know that I have been thinking of combining for a while. I secretly combined quite a few of my locks in the front and in the back of my head just to get a feel for combining because this is where the locks were very tiny (This was done months ago). Although I like the bigger locks, combining in the front reduced my density because my hair is very thin and fine there. If I had it to do all over again, I would not have combined at the hair line but rather more in the middle of my's a learning journey as well. The good news is that the roots of the tiny locks that I combined seem to be much stronger, so that's always good right!

Until next time,
Lock on wit yo bad self!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

I Stand Corrected

Hello All,
Today my mother came to Hawaii to visit me for the last time as we will be leaving with a permanent change of duty station (my husband is in the Army) going to North Carolina some time in May. The first thing she said to me was "Wow! Look at all that hair you have!" Now this took me by surprise as you all know that I have been wondering lately why everyone else's hair is growing and mine is standing still. The last time I saw my mother was about 10 months ago and she said that there is a big difference. So I stand corrected, my hair IS growing :)

My mother is newly natural again. She was natural for years and a few months ago added a wave neuvo (SP?) to her hair. The chemicals thinned and took her hair out in spots so just before coming here, she had it cut off again and is now sporting a TWA. Lucky for me, I will now be able to try our the Nudred that I purchased on line with her in mind before she added the chemicals. I will try it out and update you all with pictures after we try it.

Until next time,
Lock on wit yo bad self!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

In a Hair Funk!

Well Blog family, I just thought I would let you guys know that I am really in a funk right now with my hair. I have been looking at other blogs and everyone's hair seems to be showing so much growth. Mine on the other hand, is at a stand still. I will be 2 years locked in June and where is the length? I...Need...Growth!!! I don't have any cute styles, and it wont stay curled either. This must be another one of those stages that it just has to go through. I guess I'll just have to let it do what it do! I still really love my hair but I just need so UMPH!!! What kind...and where to get it from...I'm not sure, but "I'm gone need my hair to say sumin' babae!" (Sorry for that outburst, LOL, but sometimes these songs just pop into my head, LOL!) Anywho...It just seems to be blah! On a positive note, it is feeling healthy. I keep it clean and moisturized so I guess that's something to be proud of. I am graduating with my Masters degree in June, Yay me! ...and I am trying to get into nursing (RN) school in January. So my life is taking so many changes right now but my hair is staying the same. I have got to put my thinking cap on and come up with something to give this hair some life.

I just thought I would add this picture of my furry babies because they love me no matter what my hair looks like:) See how they were posing for the picture.

Until next time....
Lock on wit yo bad self!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Lock Loops....UGG!

Hello all,
I have only been away for about 2 week and it feels like forever. I thought that I would try a bunch of styles and post them for you all but....nope. I am growing to love my freestyle more and more these days. It just feels right and its no fuss. Got to love that! I do however, love to accent with little clips, hair pins, and barrettes. They make me feel like my hair looks different everyday even though its in the same style.

I retightened my hair (I truly dislike the scalpy look after retightening) on the evening of Easter and then tried giving my lock loops another try in hope that it would give me some great style this time.

But, as before, I did not like the results. It looks too Grannyish, if you know what I mean. I need something new and different and my hair seems to only like free styling at this point so I guess I will have to stick with it. I wanted to try the perm rods again, a style that I often wore in the past, but as my locks have matured a bit, they no longer fit nicely around the rods. Many come out uncurled as a result. Although I am loving the free style look, I have to attend a military ball for my husbands Officer School graduation at the end of the month. (Yay! Hubby) Any suggestions on ways I can do my hair for a formal event. The last ball I went to, I used the lock loops and then did an updo. It was OK, but I need a style that doesn't make me look so mature.

I have also been in somewhat of a funk because one thing that is usually great about me is my skin; to my surprise, it has broken out like something terrible. I mean, I didn't even get acne in high school so why is it that now, at age 3? (thirty WHAAAAT?), am I getting skin breakouts? I don't even have a clue as to what to use. I wash my face daily with Noxema and that is about it. I don't know what to use to clear it up because this has never been an issue for me. Maybe some of you great makeup queens can give me some cool makeup tips so at least I can still feel pretty for the ball. I wear eye shadow every now and then but I have no clue on how to really wear makeup. I guess it's time to go back to youtube, LOL! Cinderella's fairy god mother needs to show up QUICK!
PS: Sorry that my pictures are never of good quality but I take them with my camera phone. Shhhh, don't tell anyone that I have a digital camera but have no earthly idea how to upload the pictures. My Hubby usually takes care of all that technical stuff. Since he is away, the camera phone will have o do. I will try to get better y'all. And, don't mind my Alvin and the Chipmunks shirt either, I was only chillin at home all day. I just wanted you all to see the results of the lock loops. I promise I didn't go out like that. HA! At least the kids thought it was cool!.........Aaallll-viiin!

Lock on wit yo bad self!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Maintaining My Hair

The purpose of this post is to address a few questions that I have received. I will list the questions and the answers. I'm proud to tell you all that maintenance to my hair is done by...none other than...yours truly! Yay me! My locks were originally started as Sisterlocks (TM). I started with this method because I had permed ends at the time and really wanted to get started locking my hair. After one year of having my hair maintained by a consultant, I took on the task myself due to the costliness of the retightening. This was very scary at first because I am not a loctician and was new to being natural. So...of corse, I turned to the internet. I found information on how to maintain with a latch hook but, to be honest, it just looked too difficult for me. Then, I found the web site for the Nappylocks(TM) tool and ordered it. It came in the mail rather quickly in a cute little bag and it works like a charm. I would love to have taken the Sisterlocks (TM) class but it was too expensive to me, especially since it came to Hawaii in December, around Christmas time.

*** NOTE: Sorry for the bad quality pics in my car of me but wanted to show my hair freshly washed. I did an updo for an Army ceremony in a hurry and accessorized with a flower on the side which is barely visible, but, at least you can get the idea***

How do you maintain your hair?
I maintain my hair as well as my daughters hair with the Nappylocks (TM) tool using the
4 point rotation on most of our locks. I have recently started using the 2 point rotation on
some of the locks after hearing through the grapevine that it will help some of the skinnier locks to expand a bit better. The Nappylocks (TM) tool comes in a variety of sizes as you can see in the picture.

What shampoo do you use?
I have three different shampoos that I rotate between because I love them all soo mcuh.
Shampoo #1 - Aubrey Organics Normalizing Shampoo (Swimmer's formula for active lifestyles)

Cost: $8.99 for 11 FL oz
I use this shampoo because it has all natural ingredients, no harsh detergent or chemocals and is recommended for sun, salt, chlorine and perspiration exposure. Living in Hawaii, y'all know I need this. It is also said to help with dryness and brittleness as well as remove minerals (from the hard water in HI) chlorine, and other impurities. This shampoo does not lather well but it leaves the hair feeling clean and moisturized.

Shampoo #2 - Head & Shoulders dandruff Shampoo (refresh formula)

Cost: about $4.99 14.2 FL oz
This is great when my hair gets a bit itchy. Unlike the Aubrey Organics, it does lather well and leaves my head feeling clean, clean, clean. This shampoo contains pyrithione zinc which is said to help regrow hair and to thicken, thinning hair. Although it contains the pyrithione zinc, it also contains sodium laureth sulfate which is a harsh detergent which is said to strip the hair and aid in hair loss. So I use this product sparingly.

Shampoo #3 - VO5 Moisture Milks (Strawberries & Cream Moisturizing Shampoo)

Cost: $.75 - yep..that right! $.75 15 FL oz
Umm...umm...umm! This smell Grreat! It also lathers well and leaves my hair feeling clean. The smell lingers a wile and I like that. This product however, has sodium laureth sulfate in it as well so I use it sparingly.

All three of these shampoos are on my "Keepers" list but I use the Aubrey Organics regularly because it is all natural. I add the Head & Shoulders when my hair is super itchy, and I add the VO5 when I would like a fruity smell. I condition my hair about once or twice a month using the Aubrey Organics normalizing conditioner (Swimmers formula for active lifestyles). Again for the fruity smell I sometimes mix in the VO5 Moisture milks Strawberries & Cream Moisturizing Conditioner). Sometimes I do not use shampoo at all and just co-wash (wash the hair using conditioner). I especially co-wash when I am working out or if I want to was more than once a week. In this case, I use the Aubrey Organics conditioner.

So...That's all folks!

Lock on wit yo bad self!

Essential Oils

You may or may not know that I ABSOLUTELY LOVE essential oils (EO). This natural hair bit has triggered research for me on essential oils and other natural products. In addition to the natural oils, I like to use natural shampoos, conditioners, and soaps. One day I may try my hand at making my own soaps using some of the essential oils listed below.

Because I have received so many questions concerning essential oils and which ones to use, I thought I would give the run down on a few that I like the most. When using these oils, be sure to dilute or mix with a carrier oil such jojoba oil, almond oil, or shea butter because essential oils can be too strong to use on the skin and scalp alone.

My favorite EO is peppermint oil. The picture above is of the brand I use...Love it! I buy it from a local health food store. I make a spritz which includes water in a spray bottle (about 8 - 10 oz), 5 drops of peppermint oil, about 1/2 oz of almond oil, and about 1/2 oz of infusium leave in treatment for moisture (some of you may be saying "infusim isn't a natural product." Well gosh darn it... you are correct, but it seems to help my hair to retain the moisture throughout the day so I add just a bit in). I shake this up and spray my hair in the mornings, in the evenings when I come home from work, or whenever my hair and scalp just need a pick-me-up. The peppermint oil gives a tingle and an airy feeling that just makes me smile and appreciate being able to wet my hair everyday. Try it! I hope you enjoy the refreshing feeling it gives as much as I do. (see the bottom of the post for reference for more info or to purchase on line)

Peppermint Essential Oils
- Peppermint is an energizing oil with a penetrating, minty aroma
- Helps to relieve fatigue and muscle pain. Use it in the daytime, as its energizing effects may keep you awake at night.
- Add to a massage blend for the digestive system. Excellent for refreshing tired head and feet. Sniff from bottle or one drop on handkerchief to revive during travel. Blended with Rosemary and Juniper it makes an excellent morning bath.
- Warning: Some Aromatherapists say do not use Peppermint when pregnant
- Aromatherapy class: energizing, stimulating / Aroma type: minty
- Traditional use: insect repellent, emollient, antiseptic, muscle relaxant
- Blend well with: bergamot, geranium, lavender, marjoram, rosemary, sandalwood
- Safety information: can cause skin irritation

Lavender Essential Oil
- Lavender is the most versatile of essential oils
- It is relaxing and refreshing, uplifts the spirits, and helps to relieve the distress of muscle pain.
- Balances your body and mind. Calms or stimulates according to your bodies needs. Excellent for refreshing tired muscles, feet and head. Add a drop to the pillow/sheet before peaceful sleep.
- Treats burns and reduces scaring. Can be used neat in small amounts on burns but care still needs to be taken
-Blends with many other oils
-Aromatherapy class: calming, balancing, soothing / Aroma type: herbaceous
- Traditional use: muscle relaxant, soothing agent, skin conditioner, astringent
- Blends well with: bergamot, clove, rosemary, eucalyptus, patchouli, clary sage, rose, jasmine

Lemon Essential Oil
- Fresh, citrus scent that is revitalizing and uplifting. It has antibacterial and tonic properties, making it useful for relief of cold symptoms
- Widely used in beauty care. It cleanses, refreshes, cool and stimulates
- Astringent antiseptic oil. Useful for oily skin. Can be used to lighten dull, stained hands or to tone and condition nails and cuticles.
- Warning:Do not use Lemon on the skin or in a bath for 12 hours prior to sun or sunlamp exposure.
- Aromatherapy class: energizing, uplifting / Aroma type: citrus
- Traditional use: antiseptic, soothing agent
- Blends well with: neroli, clary sage, bergamot, citronella, orange flower, violet left, galbanum

Lime Essential Oil
- Acts like lemon and the other citrus oils, Nice aroma
- Warning: Do not use lime on the skin in direct sunlight, however if the essential oil of lime is distilled rather than expressed, then it does not have a photo-toxic effect.
- Dilute to 1% and use only 3 drops in a bath as it may cause irritation of the skin
- Aromatherapy class: energizing, uplifting / Aroma type: citrus
- Traditional use: soothing agent, astringent, skin conditioner
- Blends well with: clary sage, citronella, lavender, lavandin, neroli, rosemary

Rosemary Essential Oil
- Rosemary is an energizing oil with a string herbaceous aroma. It helps to relieve muscle muscle aches and combats mental fatigue
- Use it in the daytime as it energizing effect may keep you awake at night.
- Perfect in Pre and Post sports rubs to maintain suppleness
- Helps combat water retention and cellulite
- Good hair tonic
- An 'ideal pick me up'
- Combats fatigue and clears stuffy atmosphere
-Warning: Do not use Rosemary when pregnant, having high blood pressure, or suffering from epilepsy. It may cause irritation of the skin.
- Aromatherapy class: energizing, stimulating / Aroma type: camphoraceous
- Traditional use: antiseptic, muscle relaxant, soothing agent, skin conditioner
- Blends well with: olibanum, lavender, lavandin, citronella, thyme, basil, peppermint, labdanum, elemi, cedarwood, petitgrain, cinnamon
- Safety Information: use 1/2 recommended dilution or less

Chamomile, Roman Essential Oil
- Roman Chamomile has a warm, sweet, herbaceous scent that is relaxing and calming.. It is soothing to all types of skin and is a wonderful addition to a massage oil for sore muscles.
- Known for the strong soothing effect on the mind and body
- The Roman and German Chamomile are excellent for protecting dry skin
- Many uses: Used to treat nerve, headache, insomnia, menstrual disorders, and comforting oil during high pollen count (unless you have an allergy to ragweeds).
- A gentle oil, suitable for the young and fragile
- One of the few essential oils that can be used on inflamed skin conditions
- Blends well with: eucalyptus, lavender, bergamot, galbanum, jasmine, neroli, rosemary, and clary sage
- Aromatherapy class: calming / Aroma type: fruity
- Traditional use: muscle relaxant, skin conditioner

Tea Tree Essential Oil
- Powerful antiseptic, anti-fungal and anti-viral
- Good for acne, cold sores, warts, and burns
- Use for vaporizing to kill germs
- Useful cleansing agent for skin
- Helps combat foot odor and athletes foot
- Also known as Ti Tree
- Has a wide range of uses including AIDS related illnesses (further reading recommended)
- Warning: may cause irritation to sensitive skin
- Aromatherapy class: energizing, stimulating, toning / Aroma type: camphoraceous
- Traditional use: insect repellent, antiseptic
- Blends well with: lavandin, lavender, clary sage, rosemary, cananga, geranium, marjoram, clove, nutmeg

Eucalyptus Essential Oil
- Eucalyptus oil is a fresh and stimulating oil with a penetrating scent and antiseptic properties
- Widely used as a component of preparations for relieving congestion and muscle aches
- Powerful antiseptic, used in baths and massage during the cold season. Blend oil in chest rubs and use in a vaporizer to keep air germ free in sick room
- Aroma class: toning, stimulating / Aroma type: camphoraceous
- Traditional use: deodorant, antiseptic, soothing agent, skin conditioner, insect repellent
- Blends well with: coriander, juniper berry, lavender, lemon, lemongrass, pine, tyme

And remember to make and try some spritzes with these essential oils!

Until next time,
Lock on wit you bad self!

Dreaming Earth Botanicles Somatherapy. (2010). Reference guide for essential oils. Retrieved from,

Saturday, March 20, 2010

What's your Hair Type?

I have read many posts about hair typing on many other blogs. When reading them in the past, I always thought to myself "Who Cares!" But, as my locking journey continues and I contemplate changes (i.e combining), and maintain my own hair, I realize that if I knew my true hair type from the beginning, I could have possibly made better informed or different decision on the type of locks to start and what method to start with. Knowing my hair type also affects the type o locks that my hair will produce versus the locks that I had envisioned for myself upon install. Becoming a do it yourselfer (DIY) has lead me to do some research. Why am I telling you this? Well, lets just say that the locks that used to top the head of Ms. Lauren Hill, are exactly what I would love to have as my crown. After looking recently at old photos and you tube videos of Lauren while examining my own head trying to determine how to combine and what I could do to achieve this look, I realized that I will never, ever, have locks like Lauren's. Why is this? Well lets take a look at a hair typing chart.

Fia's Hairtyping System

FIRST CLASSIFIER - Your curliness (or lack thereof)

The straight ones
1a - stick straight
1b - straight but with a slight body wave, just enough to add some volume, doesn't look wavy
1c - straight with body wave and one or two visible S-waves (e.g. nape of neck or temples)

The wavy ones
2a - loose, stretched out S-waves throughout the hair
2b - shorter, more distinct S-waves (similar to waves from braiding damp hair)
2c - distinct S-waves and the odd spiral curl forming here and there

The curly ones
3a - big, loose spiral curls
3b - bouncy ringlets
3c - tight corkscrews

The really curly ones
4a - tightly coiled S-curls
4b - tightly coiled hair bending in sharp angles (Z-pattern)

SECOND CLASSIFIER - What (most of) your individual strands look like

F - Fine
Thin strands that sometimes are almost translucent when held up to the light. Shed strands can be hard to see even against a contrasting background. Similar to hair found on many people of Scandinavian descent.

You can also try rolling a strand between your thumb and index finger. Fine hair is difficult to feel or it feels like an ultra-fine strand of silk

M - Medium
Strands are neither fine nor coarse. Similar to hair found on many Caucasians.

You can also try rolling a strand between your thumb and index finger. Medium hair feels like a cotton thread. You can feel it, but it isn't stiff or rough. It is neither fine or coarse.

C - Coarse
Thick strands that where shed strands usually are easily identified against most backgrounds. Similar to hair found on many people of Asian or native American descent.

You can also try rolling a strand between your thumb and index finger. Coarse hair feels hard and wiry. As you roll it back and forth, you may actually hear it.

THIRD CLASSIFIER - Your overall volume of hair

Put your hair in a ponytail with as much hair as possible in it. Don't bother with the way it looks - the goal is to have most/all of your hair in there. If it means it sits smack dab on top of your head, put it there.

Measure the circumference of the ponytail. If you have bangs and/or you can't get all of your hair in there adjust according to how much of your hair you have measured.

i - thin (less than 2 inches/5 centimeters)
ii - normal (between 2-4 inches or 5-10 centimeters)
iii - thick (more than 4 inches/10 centimeters)
(Black Hair Media Hair Forum, 2006) why will I never have locks like Lauren's old ones? The answer is simple; it's because she and I have totally different hair types (Duuhhh). From what I can tell from the photos and the youtube vids that I watched, Lauren has 4b-C-iii hair type. Me on the other hand; I have a combination of 3c/4a-F-i/ii hair type. Now these types are completely different and produce completely different results when locking.

Although I have fallen in love with Lauren's thicker locks, which look more organic to me, and she can continue to be my lock idle (although she lo longer rocks locks), I have come to the realization that I will never have that exact look. Why...because my hair is too soft, too fine, and too thin. On the other hand, I can smile anyway because my head is covered in beautiful smaller locks that fit me perfectly and I am happy about that (for now). Of course it is OK to admire the beauty of other locks but mine will only look like my own and no one else's. My hair type is what determines the crown of locks that will sit atop of this queens head. Learn and love your unique hair type as it is beautiful, regardless of the curl pattern, the texture, or the volume. Individual uniqueness is what gives locks their beauty. No two heads are exactly yours, because I am surely loving mine. (besides, if I had Lauren's hair, I'd have a big ol' head cause my ego would be ever expanding and broken neck from swinging my head waaay too much:p)

Lock on wit yo bad self!

Black Hair Media Hair Forum. (2006). Fia’s hair typing systems. Retrieved from,

New Moon

Well, this is unrelated to hair. It is just after midnight here in Hawaii and I am just getting home from being one of the first to purchase the New Moon DVD from a local video store. Is anyone else a Twilight junkie like me? I enjoyed reading the series so much. Vampires normally wouldn't interest me but I am so glad that I read the series because it turns out, it was such an interesting love story. Too bad I can't erase my memory and read it again. If you haven't read it, you must jump on the Twilight band wagon.

Until next time,
Lock on wit yo bad self!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Stages I Have Been Through

As you all may already know, I love my locks, but this has not always been the case. Locks go through many stages along the locking process. The first stage for me was with permed ends.

Starter Locks
The starter locks were thin and stringy with the 4pt and reverse 4pt pattern showing clearly. (My daughters hair had no perm and she had curly Q's on the ends) The locks easily slipped away and had to be carefully taken care of, especially when washing. As instructed by my consultant, I had to braid and band (B&B) when washing. This is the process of braiding the hair and then putting little rubber bands which came in my sister lock starter kit, on the ends when shampooing or rinsing the hair. This made washing take a little longer but it wasn't too bad. The only problem was that I didn't really feel like my scalp was getting squeaky clean after washing. Sometimes the locks slipped away even with B&B. No product is supposed to be used in the locks during this stage. Sisterlocks starter shampoo was supposed to be used. The first two week of my journey, the 2 rows of locks at the nape of my neck came completely undone and I had a Tiny Weeny Afro (TWA) in the back until I could see my consultant again. She fixed them right back up though. The beginning was a complete struggle and I couldn't imagine my hair ever actually locking. I wore a lot of perm rod sets, straw sets, and braid outs. At the time I didn't think it was cute at all but looking back at some of the pictures, I was doin aight! During this stage my consultant suggested that I use nothing in my hair besides water. No products! Washing was supposed to be done with the sisterlocks starter shampoo. I cheated though, I used different shampoos and oiled my scalp a bit because the "itchies" were killing me.That sisterlocks starter shampoo made my hair and scalp super DRYYYY! I would also use a bit of product when curling against consultant advise such as lot of body setting lotion (diluted) and mango and lime locking wax on my ends when I did a straw set. I guess no harm was done.

The Frizzies
The frizzies started after about the first 3-4 months or so. The locks went from stringy, to frizzy. I mean, hair was everywhere, sticking out every which way. It was during this stage that being tame and professional, as some like to call it, was a hard look to achieve. Some days I tried to tame the hair, other days I just said forget it! Shake and go was my routine on a lazy day. Now that was a "hot mess!" Other days I continued to straw set a lot as the frizzies looked appropriate with the straw set in my opinion.

Budding cant be explained with any other word better. The hair actually has little buds on the ends. I will attempt to show a picture of a bud but it really isn't of good quality, sorry. This stage is where, people, rude ones, would walk up to me and pick out the little buds and say "Ooo Chile, you had somin' in you head!" OK, ok...that was a bit of exaggeration but y'all get my drift:) People did actually pick the buds out though, as if they were getting lint out of my head and doing me a favor. The locks during this stage seemed to be getting bigger or fluffier but not longer. My hair was growing out instead of down. The "itchies" settled down.

Settling Down
As the budded locks started to actually lock, the appearance of the buds disappeared. The locks started to settle down and come into their own. This is the stage where I got fed up with the 2 textures and cut off the permed ends. I could see the natural beauty of the locks trying to peak through so I did away with those permed ends on a whim. Snip...snip...snip. It was scary but I was proud of myself after I got used to the very short locks again. The good thing was that styling was not a must anymore. I could now just freestyle. This is also the stage where spritzing became favorable and the use of essential oils (EO). I will address spritzing and EO in a later post. To my surprise, my one year mark came and went while I was still in this stage. I thought surely at my one year lockversary that I would be fully locked, but each individual has a different journey. It just depends o your hair texture. The one year mark is also when I took over my own maintenace. No more consultant. Thank God, I did that because I got a true feeling for what was going on in my head. I could retighten at my own convenience, not rely on someone else's schedule, and the savings were a plus as well.

Tenagers are the stage just after the settling down stage but not quite mature yet. This stage is doable. You can style if you want, but if you don't want, that's cool too. This is the stage where the locks start to condense and they no longer look fluffy. I have noticed that styling in this stage changed. The locks in earlier stages, curled much better and the curls lasted for ever. In the teenage stage, my hair would curl but the curls did not last long, even when I use setting lotion. Cute for one day only. Every stage has its pros and cons.

I believe now that I am 21 months locked, my locks are finally starting to mature. They seem to be hanging better now and I can finally see that they are growing down instead of out. The locks look uniformed and are all sealed on the ends with the exception of about 2 or 3. I cannot image myself with any other hair style at this point other than locks but I am beginning to contemplate combining as I enjoy the versatility of the sisterlocks but have fallen in love with the look of larger locks. Just a thought, nothing is for sure yet. Maybe some color will make me content. Hmm...we will see!

Locks and life follow some what of the same path. Starting as babies and progressing to maturity. Enjoy and embrace each stage as the locks grow up before you know it, just as children do. The difference between locks and life is that with locks you can take many chances and even make mistakes because if you mess up, you can do them over if you choose, but there are no "do overs" in life, so make good choices but live life to the fullest!

Thanks as always for reading and,
Lock on wit yo bad self!

Then til Now

***Pictures are in order from install day until current stage(21 months locked)***

Wow! I am so very excited about the start of this new blog because hopefully it will allow me to share the joys of locking. My journey started on June 20th, 2008. My daughter (we will call her Munkin for blog purposes) and I are embarking upon this truly interesting quest for hair freedom together. This is her 3rd set of locks (kind of) for her although she is only 10 years old. Let's start from the beginning, I will share how I became interested in locks.

About 3 years ago, my baby girl was searching the internet, looking for hairstyles that wouldn't require much maintenance as she is extremely tender headed. Munkin came across a beautiful picture of traditional locks and said to me at about age 7, "Mom, I want my hair just like this!" I was shocked! Did she really like locks or was she trying to get out of getting her hair combed? I explained that what she was looking at wasn't braids and that they were permanent. She insisted that she still wanted what she saw and I encouraged her to continue her search. After several days of viewing photos on-line, Munkin was sure that this was the hairstyle for her. At this point, I was contemplating perming because managing her hair while she screamed and thrashed about was getting way too tiresome. Since she showed interest in locks, I searched for ways to start locks, just in case we wanted to try it. Soon after, I 2 strand twisted her hair and it was gorgeous! Unsure of how to wash and maintain these twists, I took them out. Back at square one. Well, I consulted the lady who was perming and cutting my hair at the time about starter locks. She assured me that she could start my daughters locks for a low price of $65. I made the appointment and two weeks later, comb coils were installed and Munkin was happy! We both loved the comb coiled look. Munkin wore the comb coils with pride although she couldn't understand why they looked so short. After about 2-3 months with the coils, we again did a take down because I felt they were producing too large of a lock for such a small girl (If only I was as educated about the process then as I am now). Although the lock journey for Munkin was put on hold again, the take down left her with a wonderful twist out which she rocked for a couple of weeks and loved as well. I think my baby girl is a natural naturalist. She is confident with any natural style. Unsure of which road to take next, we put Munkin's journey to locks on hold for a while.

Months later, I ran into a young lady with a head full of beautiful new sisterlocks. I had never seen sisterlocks before and being my usual nosy self, I asked the young lady about her hair. She was happy to converse, answered all of my many questions, and gave me her loctition's (former sisterlocks trainee) number. Immediately when I got home, I called to inquire. We had a great conversation about hair, work, life, living in Hawaii, and much much more. Surprisingly, I set a date to have a consult on my own head which had only been natural (with permed ends) for about 7 months.To make a long story short (er), I had a consult about a month later and my install was completed about 2 weeks after that. I am not sure of the exact number of locks that were installed, but it took from 8am on June 20, 2008 until 2am the following morning. (only stopping for short breaks and a 30 minute nap towards the end). It was tiring but unexplainably liberating. Initially I hated them because of the two textures but I soon grew to love them. A good nights rest and a few packs of perm rods helped to ease my mind. I was more concerned about the questions I would receive from co-workers than anything else, considering I live in Hawaii and the majority of the population is Asian. My new baby locks did bring about lots of questions but I made it threw it and everyone thought they looked nice to my surprise. Two months later, on August 16, 2008, Munkin had her sisterlocks installed as well. Like mother like daughter (or the other way around, lol). We are certainly enjoying this journey together and it has brought about a bond between the two of us that we didn't have before.

Well, this should bring you up to date on my (our) hair; where I have been and where I am now. I have taken many pictures trying to create somewhat of a story to show and encourage my sister, Lil' I, to lock as well. I just want her to experience the JOY OF HAIR FREEDOM!

Enjoy the pictures and until next time!
Lock on wit yo bad self!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Getting Started

Hello everyone! I am Hibiscus Niki. I have been locked for 21 months. This blog will document my lock journey in an attempt to help me along the way. I would love to share what I know, encourage others, as well as learn from others concerning locks and life's lessons.I will post pictures and updates as much as I can as I know pictures speak louder than words in the case of lock journeys. I hope you all like my hair as I LOVE IT! This hair freedom is the best and too bad I didn't find it years ago.

Lock on wit yo bad self!