Saturday, January 4, 2014

growth aid exams (end of 1st session)

Posted by Yahya at 5:31 PM
With the end of 2013 was also the end of the Hairlista challenge I was participating in, the 6 inches in 6 months challenge. I chose to follow the challenge because I would be testing my growth aids during a similar time frame. I did actually make the six inches, about 6 1/2 inches, but my goal wasn't exactly length and I would trim my hair after testing each growth practice. To see the first half of my documented growth, visit this post. So how did I continue after September?   

september 3 - Almost measured 29 inches, but the ends grew out straggly again. I trimmed more thoroughly this time and accidentally trimmed to 25 inches 1 cm, but I didn't really mind it. I started testing bamboo tea in conjunction with the ghe method. I drank the tea once a day, sometimes twice.
october 1 - I strangely saw no growth. Like how your head can get use to the inversion, did my head get use to the ghe? I decided to stop doing the ghe method after one more week, to see if I'd get the results it usually gave me after a break. I also considered that I might not have given the bamboo tea enough time to kick in.
october 3 - I started doing the inversion method, this time keeping it closer to the book by doing hot oil treatments and cleansing my scalp. Last time I only inverted my head everyday for about 5 minutes.
october 10 - I measured about an extra 1 1/2 to 2 inches of growth, now I was a stringy 27 inches again. The next day I decided to try taking bamboo tea alone for a month, but I discontinued a week and a half in and saw no results.

When I did the inversion last time and only inverted my head, ignoring the washing and hot oil part, I only got 1-2 cm of growth. I'm not sure if doing the extra parts gave me the better results though, as I did the ghe method twice during the week. Did the ghe suddenly start working again? 

I said before it's not good for girls with afro textured hair to wash their hair with shampoo everyday, it's too drying, and our scalps tend to not get oily quick anyway. This is why we often skip this part of the inversion method. This might be one of the reasons girls with straighter hair textures tend to see better results. So how did I incorporate the scalp washing part of this method? Well, I actually tried a variety of things that didn't work until I finally found one that did.

The significance of the wash step in the inversion method is that your scalp gets cleaned, cleaning your hair has nothing to do with it. How can I clean my scalp and not my hair? First I tried to make a homemade dry shampoo with only natural ingredients like lemon juice, aloe vera, and apple cider vinegar. It might have worked if it only had to clean my natural sebum and not the olive oil from the hot oil step of the inversion. I tried to change the recipe around, but sometimes it seemed to only be making the scalp situation oilier. Now I know why oily scalp girls can't help but wash their hair often, it really did not feel good. I'd rinse my hair after every failed attempt. Eventually I decided to just make a shikakai and amla tea and only apply it on my scalp with my roots-only applicator bottle. After at least a half hour I'd hit the shower and semi-wash my hair like a cowash. This method worked much better, and is something I'll continue to practice.

 I tested bamboo tea for about 5 weeks and sadly saw no results. It's suppose to be one of the greatest sources of silica. I'm a tea person, so a growth aid in tea form would have been a perfect match for me. Some girls who took it noted a faster growth rate, healthier new growth, and a looser curl pattern. People also like it because it actually has an okay taste compared to other hair growth sustenance, With sugar added, it tasted kinda like diluted green tea with a little bamboo flavor. Sadly, I didn't get any of those results but it is possible I didn't stay with it long enough to enter my system. I'm done with it for now but may test it again in the future. Also a note for those who plan to try it, it's very potent. You can use one bag twice. but don't be stupid like me, I ordered 30 tea bags and after using one I stored it in a container in the fridge. Instead of using it again the next day, I used and stored all of them in the container, planning to reuse them all again after I ran out of new bags. It would have made more sense to use one bag for two days. bamboo tea is expensive and that's a good way of extending it's life. The way I did it could have worked, but storing tea bags is tricky. If the container you keep them in isn't sealed properly the tea bags absorb the smells of the food in the fridge. This was why I was not able to reuse them like I planned and discontinued testing them in October.

I've been taking a break from my growth aid exams, but don't fret. I'll be testing again mid-January with the start of 6 inches in 6 months round 2. My goal during this growth aid testing was to gain thicker, fuller ends. Did I reach my goal? Not really... yes, I said not really, and I'll be explaining why soon.  


runningnatural on January 24, 2014 at 7:09 AM said...

With jbs/jhs can you still do rollersets and braidouts or is it pin straight?

Yahya on January 24, 2014 at 8:17 AM said...

@runningnatural, I answered your question here!

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