HAPPY 2014!!!

HAPPY 2014!!!

2014

 

I know, I know….this is LONG overdue. Please forgive me :o)  I got some BIG plans for La Coco Bella this year and I’m super excited about it :o) I am not gonna spill all the beans just yet but look out for a new look, new columns, new, new, new! BUT With change, this means time and patience sooooo I won’t be posting anything new for a little while :o( In the meantime, check out old posts (or new ones if you are here for your first time!). I’ve provided some links below to get you started.

THANK YOU SOOOO MUCH for supporting me these past 2 years. La Coco Bella has changed my life and I can’t thank you enough!!!  I will keep you posted with what is to come!!!!

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Conditioner : : Nature’s Gate Biotin Conditioner

Conditioner : : Nature’s Gate Biotin Conditioner

Hello :o) I hope everyone enjoyed the holiday!

So, every natural chica knows that conditioner is ESSENTIAL to our regimen and keeps it manageable. We also know that it’s the first thing to run out of since we use so much, so often lol Because of this, I like to keep some inexpensive, really good, don’t have to buy online, conditioners on hand at all times. I have two brands that I always stick with and can always count on—Trader Joe’s conditioners and Nature’s Gate conditioners ( I reviewed the Hemp Conditioner last year in case you missed it!).

I LOVE Nature’s Gate conditioners! I don’t know why I don’t hear about them more in the natural hair world, oh well all I know is they are my go to cheapie conditioners! I saw them one day in Whole Foods and I was shocked at the price and how natural the ingredients were! PLUS the huge 18 oz bottle. I later found them sold on my fav site VitaCost.com, so I also have used the henna and aloe vera (( the henna was eh ok, probably won’t buy that again, I loved the aloe vera and it smells amazing! Definitely will rotate that one )) but this review is going to focus on the Biotin ConditionerI bought my current bottle from off Vitacost for $4.49 for 18oz. Can’t beat that!

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Product Description
Fortifies weak, thinning hair. Nature’s Gate Biotin Conditioner helps condition and smooth weak hair. Utilizing Biotin, an array of fortifying amino acids and our nurturing 7 Healthy Hair Nutrients, this conditioner helps revitalize and fortify thinning hair. Hair looks and feels stronger, vibrant and full of life.

Exclusive healthy hair blend includes Panthenol, Soy Proteins, Vegetable Proteins, Jojoba Oil, Borage Flower Seed Oil, Vitamin C and Vitamin E. B Vitamins Biotin, Folic Acid and Niacin are well known for their important role in hair health. Panthenol (Vitamin B5) and Soy Proteins help fortify hair. Vegetable Proteins condition and moisturize, helping to diminish the appearance of split ends. Jojoba Oil helps restore the natural moisture level of hair

Ingredients
Water, Glycerin (Vegetable), Stearyl Alcohol (Vegetable Derived), Cetyl Alcohol (Vegetable Derived), Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride (Vegetable Derived), Benzyl Alcohol, Biotin, Panthenol, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein, Jojoba Seed Oil, Borage Seed Oil, Vitamin E, Vitamin C, Sesame Seed Oil, Barley Extract, Geranium Maculatum Extract, Olive Leaf Extract, Pansy Extract, Aloe Vera Leaf Juice, Niacin, Sodium PCA, Sodium Lactate, Cysteine, Arginine, Serine, Threonine, Folic Acid, Aspartic Acid, Ascorbyl Palmitate, PCA, Glycine, Alanine, Valine, Isoleucine, Proline, Histidine, Phenylalanine, Inositol, Stearalkonium Chloride (Vegetable Derived), Hydroxyethycellulose (Plant Derived), Potassium Sorbate, Citric Acid (Vegetable Derived), Fragrance.
Sulfate free, Paraben Free, Sodium Lauryl/Laureth/Coco Sulfate Free, Phthalate Free, Butylene Glycol Free

I love Nature’s Gate conditioners because they have SO much slip and have great consistency/thickness! I always use them, even if I’m going to use another conditioner, because they help soften my hair after washing and keeps my hair lubricated throughout the wash/condition process. It definitely helps seal the hair cuticle since shampoo bars can really open the cuticle ((you know that rubbery waxy feeling you sometimes get after washing)). I also love using this conditioner as a co-wash and after I do ayurvedic treatments since it helps “wash” away any loose particles from the pastes without having to apply shampoo again.

This conditioner contains biotin, which helps strengthen your hair, and I can say that I have noticed a difference after I use it. I feel like it fortifies my hair after each use but I don’t use it consistently enough to say if it really thickens my hair (plus I like to rotate products).

One random thing about it is is has a pepperminty scent to it and even a bit of that cool tingle BUT there is no peppermint in it!! lol I have no clue which ingredient(s) make it do that but it trips me out haha oh well. Still a fav!

If you aren’t up on Nature’s Gate well….you know what to do! :o)

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Curly Girl Black Friday Sales!

Curly Girl Black Friday Sales!

Calling all PJ’s (product junkies)!!

Here are a few of my fav natural hair brands that are offering Black Friday/Small Biz Saturday/Cyber Monday/Etc. sales! Now is your chance to try some products you’ve been eyeing and save a few dollars while you’re at it :o)

Let me know what you get!

Bee Mine – (see my Bee Mine reviews HERE)

  • www.beemineproducts.com
  • 2-Hour Door buster  40% OFF $30 purchase — Thursday 11/28   8:00 – 9.59pm EST
  • 30% OFF
  • Use Code: BLK30
  • Valid Thursday 11/28 10:00pm through Friday 11/29 11:59pm EST

Karen’s Body Beautiful

Q-Redew – (see my Qredew Review HERE)

  • www.qredew.com
  • $20 OFF
  • Use Code: BLACKFRIDAY
  • Valid Friday 11/29 4am-11am CST

Chagrin Valley – (see my Chagrin Valley Reviews HERE)

Beija Flor Naturals

Aubrey Organics via Vitacost.com – (see my AO reviews HERE)

Oyin Handmade

  • www.oyinhandmade.com
  • 20% OFF Everything + FREE Shipping on purchases over $50
  • Valid Friday 11/29-12/2

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Girl Behind the Curl…. Marie!!!

Girl Behind the Curl…. Marie!!!

Hey girlies!! Are you excited for the upcoming holiday!? I am, food + family + fun is soothing to the soul and there is SOOO much to be thankful for….SO much. Hopefully these times are reminders for us to think of the things we take forgranted :o)  Oh and don’t spend all your money at these ridiculous sales this Black Friday…and Saturday, Sunday and Monday for that matter lol You know how they’ve added all these other days to the mix now lol

Anywho, so guess who’s back?!!? My gorgeous girls behind the curls!! YES Its been awhile and I know you have missed them (I have!) and so the latest curly girl is someone who I randomly stumbled upon while I was browsing the web for advice on “pineappling” my hair at night (still haven’t found the 100% go-to method that works for me but I digress lol). So during my search I came across her blog called GoodLooknOutand I instantly fell in love with everything about it! The design, the content, the writing style…it’s just a GREAT blog! Very strategic and well thought out. Lots of attention to detail. Love it! One to definitely follow! ***SIDEBAR– I even slipped into groupie mode for a sec lol and emailed her right away to tell her how much I was in love haha luckily she didn’t think I was TOO crazy haha.  Oh and Turns out we are both from Southern Cali (about 30 mins apart). There’s just something about us Cali girls :o)

So flash forward, I HAD to feature this beauty and learn about her hair regimen and here she is!

Meet Marie!!

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Introduction :: Do share a little about yourself!   

Hi! I’m Marie Young and I’ve been natural going on three years now. I’m a stay-at-home mommy and blogger who loves doing just about everything the natural way!

In the beginning :: What inspired you to go embrace your natural-ness? OR If you’ve been  natural since forever, what inspired you to never get a perm? 

To be honest, I had my aha moment once I moved to DC and saw so many beautiful, educated, black queens (like me) walking around with all these cute natural styles. They were so beautiful! Coming from LA, living that ‘barbie world’ weave life, I was in culture shock. I just gravitated toward it, wanting to see what my natural would look like!

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Mane-tain :: What is your weekly/monthly regimen like? If you have color in your hair, how do you maintain its health?

I do a wash-n-go once a week and outside of that I do a lot of twists out’s. My twist out only lasts for two days max, so I’m always re-twisting my hair at night (a routine I really can’t stand). I also deep condition with a protein treatment at least twice a month.   When I detangle, I do it with a wide tooth comb, making sure I comb from the bottom to the top to prevent breakage. I trim my hair every 6-8 weeks, and being that I only like to trim my hair while it’s straight, I usually only straighten my hair 4-5 times per year.    Once every quarter I start to get bored and I will throw in a protective style to calm my nerves. My go-to style is box braids and marley twists.

Your uniqueness :: How would describe your hair and how do you like to wear/style your hair daily? i.e. wash-n-go’s, twists, straight, protective styles, etc.  

I would describe my hair as perfectly coiled! I didn’t realize that I even had a curl pattern until my mid twenties. I was so used to press-n-curls and weaves. Plus, my curl was so heat damaged it was crazy mess.   Now, I have these cute, small, tightly coiled ringlets after my wash-n-go that I wouldn’t trade for the world. Even though I love my wash-n-go’s I also love to rock a twist out because I can maintain it longer than my natural curls.

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Choosing favorites :: What are some fav products you can’t live without or would recommend? How do you use them?   

I cannot live without my Jane Carter Curl Defining Cream for when I wear my wash-n-go’s. I also LOVE, LOVE, LOVE my Patsy Girl Spritz Splash for daily hydration and my Mi-Me Fascin8ting Hair Elixir for shine, moisture and growth.

Drop some knowledge :: Do you have a marvelous hair practice/technique you’ve learned and wouldn’t mind sharing? OR is there something you’d like to learn more about?

I’ve learned to not believe the hype when it comes to how often you’re to trim your ends. I read one popular natural hair site (which I will not name) that recommended to trim your ends every 6-8 months if you don’t use heat in your hair. That was the worst thing I could have done for my hair. After I waited 6 months with no trims I had to cut off 2 inches of growth and that worked my nerves so badly. Keep up with your regular trims no matter what!

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Shameless plug :: Do you have a hustle you’d like to share while you have the floor?

As I am editor-in-chief over at GoodLooknOut, you KNOW I have to tell you all to stop on over and get in where you fit in. I love to share the GOOD NEWS with my readers so if you have something to share, you’re all more than welcome to share!   Lastly, I’m working on a new project with a group of marvelous women called Lessons From A Wildflower that I’d love for you to check out. It’s a compilation of raw and real journal entries, from your girlfriend on the other line. It’s like chicken soup for the twenty/thirty year old soul. A place where real women, discuss real life candidly – without an instagram filter.

K.I.T. :: How can we stay connected with you? 

Blog | Email | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Tumblr | Pinterest    Talk with you all soon!

 

 

P.S. If you are interested in being featured as a Girl Behind the Curl, shoot me an email (lauren@lacocobella.com) or use the contact form to get in touch with me! :o)

Tip Tuesday : : Perfecting a Twist-out! Tip #6

Tip Tuesday : : Perfecting a Twist-out! Tip #6

lacocobella_hair_tipHey Missy Poos! (<—-yup Missy Poos lol)

Another Hair Tip Tuesday focusing on how to perfect the infamous twist-out! I also hope you were able to check out my Fall Hair Care Tips post from last week :o) Also, here’s a re-cap of the previous 5 Twist-out tips

6 : : Seal the ends of your twists and twirl them around your finger

Doing this drastically reduces frizz on the ends of your twists and when I don’t do it, my hair looks horrible and it would be safe to say that it will result in a “bad hair” day #FAIL lol

So what I do while twisting my hair up for the night, when I have about 1-2″ left to twist, I grab a thick butter ((like The Natural Root Gourmet Shea or Karen’s Body Beautiful Butter Love)) and apply a semi-generous amount to that last 1-2″ inches and continue to twist.

While this definitely protects your hair and helps retain your length BUT the important part, relating to twist-outs, is that you twirl the ends around your finger as you finish twisting.

The twirling action “clumps” your hair and makes the curl pattern uniform at the end. When the ends of your twist-outs are neat and tidy, it looks so much better and can compensate for any other parts of your hair that may be a bit frizzy towards the roots. It almost disguises it!

If it were the other way around (frizzy ends, defined roots) it can ruin the whole look.  By now, you may know how beneficial sealing the ends of your hair is anyway ;o)

Hope this helps!

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Growth : : Remember that Grey Hair??

Growth : : Remember that Grey Hair??

Hey!! :o)

Just poppin in because I wanted to share something real quick and give a few updates on my whereabouts :o). So remember back in April when I posted a growth update for Bee Mine’s Mango Hair Serum? Well, I posted a picture of a lonesome grey hair in my temple (yes, you can laugh again lol) that showed where the henna dyed hair met with the new growth that wasn’t henna’d. Here’s that same pic below in case you missed it…

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Well, check out it out now! About 6 months later it is almost 3 times in length! I wish I had taken actual measurements but I think that in the pic above that hair was about 2.5-3″ and now its about 5″-ish! This still amazes me because my whole life, I never knew my edges could still grow! They’ve always been the thinnest part of my hair so I guess the fact that knowing hair that I thought was dormant CAN grow which means the rest of my hair can too!

See the pic below! It’s actually a bit longer than it looks in the because I didn’t have it completely stretched and I know its kind of hard to see where the henna ends but the aqua arrow shows an approximation. I have also henna’d my hair I think about 2 times since the pic above.

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I’ve still been using both Bee Mine Serums (the Mango Serum with Sulfur and the Bee Sensitive Spray) at least 1-2x a week and my hair is definitely still growing! I think it is actually longer than it has ever been and I can really see the length even through my shrinkage. I also must attribute the growth (healthiness) to my Ebonnet as well because it REALLY helps retain moisture. It is something serious!! I have also been doing Greenhouse Treatments every weekend and I know quite a few naturals have attributed speedy growth because of those as well so perhaps that’s been helping as well.

So in other things, I am doing well. Very busy with my design work of course, ya’ll have no idea how much of my life this takes lol. I do graphic design full-time at my 9 to 5, free lance (my 5 to 9 lol) AND church time! This means I have NO time for much else! lol sad I know but I gotta pay da bills *le sigh* I guess its all about balance and of course knowing when you need a break. Funny, I was just thinking that last year, I took a break from blogging around the SAME time lol I guess this is when I’ve worn myself out.

Of course La Coco Bella will still be here and I actually have some BIG plans I have been “formulating” for La Coco Bella for the new year so look out for major updates and a new and improved everything some time next year hehe I won’t say anything more :o)

Alrighty well that’s all for now. I will still have product reviews here and there (trying to use up everything I have now and then when I get new stuff I will definitely share!). If you are interested in being featured on le Blog, shoot me an email :o)

Thank you for your readership and loyalty!

PEACE!!!

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Fall Hair Care Tips 2013

Fall Hair Care Tips 2013

lccb_hair_care-01Hey!! This post is long overdue but hopefully you can still incorporate some of the things I discuss ((if you haven’t already :o) ))

This is actually a semi re-post from last year but I have re-vamped it teeny bit so if this a refresher or completely new, I hope you’re still able to gain something!

It’s Fall! And if you live on the U.S. East coast, like me, or cooler climates, you know what this means—Layers, comfy sweaters, cute coats, warm scarves, boots and….no humidity!

That’s a great thing right? Well, sort of, it means less frizz for our hair but it also means there is virtually no moisture in the air so lots of naturals experience dryer hair during the fall/winter months so we have to take EXTRA measures to keep our hair moisturized. ((of course this is all relative to where you geographically live and what the climate is like, etc.))

This also means being frugal with humectants products (or being super careful if you just can’t resist). Here’s why, humectants pull moisture from the environment into your hair. If there is no moisture in the environment, the effect is reversed and it pulls moisture from your hair thus drying it out! Not good. This is also why it is even more important to properly seal the entire length of your hair and not just the ends.

Here’s a few handy tips on keeping your hair moisturized during the dryer months:

  • Deep Condition weekly…no excuses! Even if its just for 15 mins. Now that I have a Hair Therapy Warp Thermal Turban, it is super easy to get a lil DC session in every wash day :o)
  • Opt for steam treatments or the Green House Effect Treatments. You can even let the steam from your shower give you a moisture boost. THIS is my fav thing to do for my hair in the dry months. I do the GHE the night before I wash. And now that I have my beloved Ebonnet to wear over the plastic cap, it helps create even more of a “steamy” environment :o)
  • Use heavier, buttery products (like WonderCurl Butter Than Love or The Gud Stuff) to seal in moisture and keep it locked in. Apply when your hair is damp/wet to ensure the moisture gets sealed in. This also protects your hair from the elements.
  • Shampoo less (if you can manage this one, if you are like me, I still have to shampoo weekly with shampoo bars!). Try co-washing more as well :o)
  • Oil your scalp…. ok don’t go crazy with this one or you will have to shampoo more often and clog the pores on your scalp. Use a light oil mixed with essential oils or this Bee Mine Serum
  • Protect the hair around your nape and your ends <——– !!!!!!!!!!   The friction from the collars of those cute sweaters, coats and scarves can cause breakage and stunt growth. They also suck all the moisture out of your hair. I remedy this by applying a bit more product to those areas daily so my hair is “lubricated” and glides over whatever fabric I have on.
  • Wear protective styles….I am just saying this one in case you’re into this kind of stuff :) I wear my hair out pretty much every day!

—- What are some Fall hair care tips you may have!?

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