Wednesday, 9 November 2016

Hair treatments - Strengthening hair poultice

A fortnight ago I finally stopped procrastinating and used a boxed hair poultice I had had in my fridge for nearly two years xD 

Like henna, this is a mud-style hair treatment, from the Radhe Shyam brand (I don't like their hennas much because they have a pretty low dye content, but the cassia and colourless hair muds are OK). The treatment is incorrectly named as being 'henna cinchona', though, because there's no henna in the powder at all, only cassia (which has a colourless effect and is not henna, either!). The poultice includes cinchona bark (Cinchona Succirubra), birch leaves, cassia (Cassia Ovobata), nettle and thyme, and it apparently helps to strengthen hair.

I mixed the powder with strong red tea (I like using tea for rinses and treatments because of its reddish tinges and astringent qualities) in order to create the mud-textured poultice and applied it to my hair with my hands (the mud doesn't stain the skin and hair like henna does, and the mud washed out easily with water). Then I covered my hair in a plastic wrap (and some sophisticated rubber bands xD) and waited for about an hour.
Mud selfie xD!
 Because this mud doesn't colour-stain, application, rinsing and cleaning were so much easier than with henna or a vegetal dye! I literally covered the bathroom in mud while applying the poultice on my hair xD, but it was pretty easy to clean with a bit of water. Apart from that, bits of dried powder kept falling off my hair while I was finger-detangling and drying it, but overall it was an easier process than my henna experiments.

My hair felt really soft and shiny after rinsing all the mud off. It also looked a tiny bit more voluminous, I think? It doesn't feel thicker than it normally is now, though, so maybe I'd have to try again to see if it has a thickening effect (maybe after more applications?), like henna or cassia treatments. A fortnight later, I haven't noticed really noticeable changes in the strengthening department, but I'd probably need repeated, or at least more, hair treatments like this one for that, and this box was already two years old, fridge or no fridge. So pretty happy on the whole :)

This is also an October length shot!

And some pics of the post-poultice hair:

Nighttime with flash:

And in the morning, indirect sunlight with flash:


Pros (judging by  my personal experience):
  • Easy to clean and rinse out compared to staining muds like henna (still love henna, though)
  • Soft, shiny hair
  • Maybe a bit more voluminous?
  • I like the slightly bitter, herbal scent, so that was also a plus for me
Cons:
  • Mud-treatments always mean mud literally everywhere, even if it cleans off easily xD You also have to sweep the floor at least once to get all the drying powder that falls off your hair when drying. Not a low-maintenance process.
SwordWomanRiona / rionashairblog.blogspot.com.es

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Wednesday, 2 November 2016

Hairstyles - Noldorin Elf cosplay crown braided updo: Rope-braid version

Yesterday I did a Rivendell Elf cosplay shoot in some public gardens and went, once again, for a crown-style braided updo for my Noldorin Elf OC (Both my personal headcanon and some Tolkien references describe Noldorin ladies as wearing braided updos (crown braids or other), and bejewelled hairnets, snoods and tressures). So far, I have tried three variations:

1. A rope-braided, hair-taping inspired crown updo:


And now, 
3. Same updo as 2., but with rope braids instead of three-strand braids. 


  • For this style, I used:
-An elastic without metal for the initial ponytail.
-Two parandas (info about making parandas and braiding them into hair here). Parandas are optional, but a nice addition if you want added volume and colour. You could also use ribbons and/or (metallic) cord.
-Bobby pins (closed and open). Lots of them in my case xD

  • Steps (video tutorial planned!):
The steps I followed for this 'Noldorin updo' are nearly identical to the Three-strand braided crown-style updo, only I did rope-braids in this case.

1. Pull your hair into a high ponytail (or a low one, I went with a high one) and secure it with a hair-friendly elastic without metal.
2. Divide your hair into two parts. Braid each section (rope braiding), adding a paranda (optional).
3. Pin each braid around your head with closed bobby pins. I pinned one braid first until I reached the elastic at the back of the head (and left the rest hanging), and then pinned the other in front of the first one. You can also criss-cross them. 

4. Wrap and pin the remaining length of both braids around and over the elastic at the back, hiding it and creating a bun.

5. I added an amethyst hair pin as final decoration

More hair pics from the shoot:




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Thursday, 20 October 2016

Hairstyles - Braided bun with paranda tutorial and random braided buns

This bun is very similar to the Chinese braided bun, only the hairstick (you can also use a fork) is added after you start coiling the hair around the ponytail base:
And pics:


A messy braided bun at the end of the day xD:

And a couple of random braided buns without a paranda:






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Saturday, 1 October 2016

Haircare - Brushes, combs and finger detangling

During my trip in London this past week I finally got a Tangle Teezer (thanks to the Long Hair Community xD), so I thought, why not make a short post about my brushes and combs?

These are the brushes and combs that I currently own and use. From left to right: Backcombing and texturizing (I recently caved in and realized I needed this for sporadical cosplay and historical hairstyles xD), the Tangle Teezer (so far it works great for detangling the backcombing at the roots), wide-tooth wood combs (for sporadical length detangling and oil spreading at the ends), smoothing baby brush (my day-to-day brush after finger-detangling) and the plastic comb I use to put my hair up in ponytails and updos.


-Essentials:
  • Finger detangling: Finger-combing is my main detangling method. I finger-detangle routinely in the morning and at night (also if I've been wearing my hair loose/in a half-up and it needs detangling during the day). My hair is very delicate and very fine in texture, and so I find most plastic and hard bristle brushes to be pretty damaging. When finger detangling, I cause minor breakage (if any), because I'm in total control of the pressure applied to the knots and can stop before ripping through them like most brushes and combs tend to do. Also, detangling my ends and length with a comb or detangling brush (such as the Tangle Teezer) causes a lot of static in my hair, so I stick to finger-combing when it comes to the length and ends. 
  • Baby brush:  One of the main essentials in my haircare routine. Soft baby brushes are are the only kind of brushes that don't hurt my hair, and I use them to smooth and spread natural oils after finger-combing, never to detangle. 
  • Plastic shell comb:  A snag-free hard plastic shell comb that I use when putting my hair up in ponytails and updos, never to detangle. 
  • Tangle Teezer (?): I've just gotten this one and haven't had the time to try it a lot, so not sure f it'll become an 'essential' or not. So far, I've found that it works wonders in order to detangle backcombing in the root area, and it's also the gentlest dentangling brush I've ever tried. But I still don't like using brushes in order to detangle my lower length and ends, and this brush seems to cause too much static in that area, so just using it for the root and upper length areas.
-For leave-in treatments:
  • Wide-tooth wooden comb: Snag-free wide-tooth combs that I use in order to spread leave-ins, such as oils, aloe vera gel or Nightblooming Panacea, into my ends and lower length, usually after washing my hair. 
-Cosplay and historical recreation:
  • Backcombing and texturizing comb: Like I said above, I recently caved in and realized that sporadical backcombing for cosplay and historical recreation purposes was necessary (combined with synthetic hair rats and donuts for more volume), so I got this backcombing and texturizing comb, which does its work pretty well. And, as long as it's not done too often or too harshly (or in the length and ends!), I think that sporadical backcombing in the roots is not the most damaging thing you can do to your hair. After all, Missy is worth it xD
And she knows it xD
  • Tangle Teezer: So far, the Tangle Teezer is well worth its money when it comes to detangling the backcombed roots easily and painlessly.

SwordWomanRiona / rionashairblog.blogspot.com.es

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Monday, 19 September 2016

Length pics update: March-September 2016

Hairwise, these past months have been pretty much about benign (I hope!) neglect, to tell the truth xD. I've been maintaining at roughly knee (and did a bigger trim this month in order to even out my hemline), partly because right now I don't want my har to be longer, and also with the aim of thickening up the hemline, which has been a little bit thinner than I'd like to lately. Let us hope it slowly regains a bit more thickness, like it did when I hit classic length! 

Shampoo-wise, they kind of changed the formulation of Klorane's Sweet Almond shampoo, originally intended for fine-textured static-prone hair, a shampoo which had been working well for me for quite a long time - Thanks to this change, instead of less tangly, less static-y and a bit fuller, my hair actually looked less full and was way more static-y and tangle-prone, somehow. So I started trying the Klorane Flax shampoo (also intended for fine-textured hair with little volume), alongside the orange D'Shila shampoo (a strengthening shampoo with hardly any unnecessary synthetics which I love), and I believe it's feeling better now. It's a bit less static-y, a bit less tangly, and maybe a little fuller.  But yeah, my main concern right now is working on my hemline xD

So here are some monthly LHC-regulated (xD) length shots from March to September 2016. I also have some Elven cosplay length shots from the end of July 2016, which I'll be uploading soon in a separate post.

And a teaser of the Elven cosplay length shots:

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Friday, 19 August 2016

Hairstyles - The Chinese bun

Today's hairstyle post is about the Chinese bun, the first updo I tried when I learned about hairsticks on the Long Hair Community (LHC) back in 2010. Back then I used to wear the 'classical' variation of this bun, but it isn't the most secure bun for my slippery hair, so I usually go for a variation which I personally call the 'one-coil' Chinese bun.
  • Video tutorial:

And pics:
  • Classical variation:

As you can see, I don't have many pics of this variation xD!
  • One-coil variation:








Variation with an accent braid:

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Monday, 25 July 2016

Couple of cinnamon buns

A Jedi cinnamon bun from yesterday :D :

And a random cinnabun that I hadn't uploaded yet:

                                      SwordWomanRiona / rionashairblog.blogspot.com.es

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