DIY Olaplex Recipe

Olaplex has amassed a loyal following because of its seemingly magical ability to smooth, soften, and strengthen damaged hair. But at $30 for 3.3 ounces, it’s not the most budget-friendly product on the market. Not to worry, though, because TikTok clued us into an easy, inexpensive hack to DIY our Olaplex at home.  

The DIY Olaplex recipe calls for just two ingredients: water and flaxseed. You will boil down the flaxseed to create a gel that is to be applied to the hair. Flaxseed is jam-packed with omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin E, both of which are incredibly nourishing. For the BeautyLeeBar touch, we added a few drops of mielle organics Rice Water Split End Therapy because it contains rice water—one of our favorite ingredients for strengthening hair and promoting hair growth. We also sometimes add The Ordinary Multi-Peptide Serum for Hair Density and CAMILLE ROSE Rejuva-Drops Grow Back Serum. These products Replenish and hydrate the scalp, Stimulate the hair follicles, reduce breakage and shedding for thicker, full hair, add strength and shine, and encourage healthy hair growth. Get the recipe below. 

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DIY Olaplex


Recipe Type: Hair treatment
Serving Size: 1 person/week’s use
Prep Time: 2 min
Cook Time: 5 min
Total Time: 7 min

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Ingredients:
ÂĽ cup flaxseeds
2 ½ cups water
mielle organics Rice Water Split End Therapy, The Ordinary Multi-Peptide Serum for Hair Density, CAMILLE ROSE Rejuva-Drops Grow Back Serum

INSTRUCTIONS:

Combine flaxseed and water in a pot. The more flaxseed you use, the thicker the gel will be. Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring frequently. When it reaches the consistency of egg whites, use a cheesecloth to strain the mixture into a container. Mix in a few drops of mielle organics Rice Water Split End Therapy, The Ordinary Multi-Peptide Serum for Hair Density, CAMILLE ROSE Rejuva-Drops Grow Back Serum. Apply the mixture to hair and leave on for at least 10 minutes. Keep the gel in the fridge for about a week for continued use.

5 Crochet Hairstyles to Try at Home

On a scale of one to versatile, crochet braids are at the latter end of the spectrum. You can rock any style — from box braids to loose waves — using a crochet hook and a cornrow foundation. The look is also great for relieving tension from your scalp (anyone who’s ever had too-heavy box braids knows the struggle) and gives you the look of a protective style without the hours of sectioning and twisting. Other pros? Crochet styles can last for four to eight weeks and are easy to maintain. Just sleep with a silk or satin scarf or bonnet and keep strands nourished and frizz-free with a lightweight styling spray like Carol’s Daughter Monoi Repair + Protect Multi-Styling Milk. Keep reading for our favorite crochet hairstyles you can do at home.

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Butterfly Locs

Butterfly locs are an effortless-looking style that’s perfect for summer. The style uses water wave braiding hair for a low-maintenance, tousled take on regular locs. It also takes less of a toll on your scalp than regular locs, because the hair is so lightweight. To achieve butterfly locs on your own, follow along with YouTuber Crowned K’s beginner-friendly tutorial below.

Half Crochet, Half Feed-In

If braiding isn’t your strong suit, this tutorial is for you. Starting with self-described “struggle braids,” content creator Jarry The Worst uses her fingers rather than a hook to loop her full, voluminous goddess curls into the back of her hair. She prefers to use feed-in hair on the front of her head for a neater, sleeker look.

Quick Box Braids

Box braids can feel heavy, especially around your edges. That’s why YouTuber Sashie E TV crochets her hair “as close as possible to the box, but not to the box” once she plaits her natural hair. The whole style took her less than an hour to complete, and her super-clean parts make it look like she used individual braids. Bonus: you don’t need to know how to cornrow to recreate this look.

Senegalese Twists

Senegalese twists, also known as rope twists, look gorgeous in any length or thickness and lend themselves perfectly to accessorizing with charms, shells and rings. For the most natural look, hair guru TheChicNatural starts by cornrowing all of her strands back, except for the sides, which she braids upwards. Doing this also makes your twists look more realistic when they’re pulled into an updo.

Ultra-Realistic Natural Hair

We’re not going to lie, Seun Okimi completely had us fooled into thinking she was rocking her natural hair in the first minute of the video. Turns out, she’s just a whiz at installing hyper-realistic crochet hair. To start, she braids her hair straight back and stopped halfway down her head. In the back, she connects two braids and continues plaiting them horizontally. Then, she installs small sections of 4C crochet hair.

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Let’s Gain An Inch A Month Of Hair Growth ‘Til December, Shall We?

StayUniquee. Merry Curly. Maryam Hampton. BeYoutifully Natural. Seun OkimiEugenia KelcyNatural Academia.Yinka Naturalista. Believe me, I could go on and on, but for the sake of time and space, those are 8 naturalists on YouTube who have some pretty long hair (most of ’em are Type 4 hair too). I thought that shouting them out would be a great way to intro this because, if one of your new year’s desires is to have the longest ponytail ever come Christmas time, those women can inspire you—right along with some tips that I’ve got down below.

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I won’t lie to y’all. Genetics play a valid role in how long our hair gets and how fast it gets there. Yet if you’re someone who thinks that you can’t get longer tresses than you’ve ever had because your hair simply doesn’t grow, that’s a bald-faced lie. It grows. Somewhere around a one-half inch and an inch a month, to be exact. You’ve just got to make sure that you do all that you can to retain your inches. That’s where these tips come in.

If your deepest desire is to keep as much new growth as possible, apply the following 10 suggestions and watch how close to your goal you get by around this time next year.

1. Take the “Less Is More” Approach

When I first began my length retention journey, I would spend hours a week on YouTube, listening to what different naturalists would put in their hair to get the inches that they had. I got so excited that I purchased 4-5 tubs of Blue Magic, right out the gate. Unfortunately, using it more than to seal my ends every once in a while ended up being way too heavy for my hair (although some folks have been thriving with it). Anyway, after spending more money than I ever thought I would on a bunch of other products that are still in both of my bathroom cabinets, the thought crossed my mind to simplify and see if that would be my best bet. It was. Hands down.

I’m not even going to get into the specific products that worked for me vs. the ones that didn’t because it doesn’t matter. All of us are unique, so it is different strokes for different folks. What I will say is clogging up your hair follicles and weighing down your strands with tons of stuff is gonna probably do more harm than good. So, get to know your hair type and texture, try a few things that are branded for those two things specifically and wait at least a month to see how it all turns out. In the long run, you’ll probably come to realize what I did—that less (product) is more when it comes to hair growth.

2. Boost Your Collagen Intake

If you want your hair to thrive, it needs protein. Something that a lot of people don’t realize is collagen is one of the most abundant forms of protein that there is. The reason why it’s so good for your tresses is that, for one thing, your hair is made up of mostly protein (keratin). Also, collagen provides your hair with the amino acids that are necessary to build protein. Also, collagen fights off free radicals at the root (your hair follicles) and, as a bonus, it can slow down hair thinning and greying as well. This is why it’s wise to eat foods that contain a good amount of collagen. Some of those include fish, chicken, berries, citrus fruits, red bell peppers, tomatoes, and bone broth. If you’d like, you can also take a collagen supplement. 

3. Stay Hydrated

Our bodies are made up of more than 60 percent water, so of course, we need to consume a lot of it daily. Unfortunately, 75 percent of Americans are chronically dehydrated which can lead to all sorts of health issues. If you’re wondering if you could be among that number, check out “10 Overlooked Signs That You’re Dehydrated“. As far as your hair goes, a sign that it could use some extra hydration from the inside out is if your strands feel dry and brittle, no matter what you do or if your scalp dry.

In the quest to have long hair, a lot of people overlook very simple steps. When it comes to making sure that your hair is moisturized, it’s not going to matter how many moisture-rich products you use if your system is begging for water on the inside. So, make sure that you get no less than eight glasses a day. Your hair will thank you with every sip.

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4. Take a Vitamin B12 Supplement

A vitamin deficiency that is pretty prevalent within the Black community is Vitamin B12. What are some signs that you could be low in it? You’re irritable. You have low energy. Your vision is blurry. You have unexplainable shortness of breath. You’re constipated. You sense that your muscles are weak. Your tongue feels “slicker” than usual. There’s a random numbing or tingling feeling throughout your body. You’ve got memory loss. Your hair follicles are dormant.

Since Vitamin B12 is something that helps to keep your iron in good condition, when you don’t have enough of it in your system, it can weaken the blood supply to your hair follicles which can result in weak follicles, hair thinning and even hair loss. This is why it’s also a good idea to take a Vitamin B12 supplement and to also eat foods that are loaded with this particular nutrient. Some of those include fortified cereals, salmon, eggs, Greek yogurt and beef.

5. Wash Your Scalp More than Your Hair

A huge mistake that folks make when it comes to washing day is focusing a ton on their actual hair more than their scalp. The reason why this is a no-no is that your scalp is the foundation of your hair. If you don’t get all of the gunk and build-up off of it, ultimately, your hair isn’t going to thrive. Not only that but I once read an article that said, a part of the reason why it seems that white women have more success with length retention is they shampoo their hair more often which means their scalp gets massaged more in the process.

First up—white women’s hair doesn’t grow faster. Their hair is straighter (so it appears that way), it’s naturally oily (which makes it harder to break) and we experience more shrinkage (by a country mile). Second, I didn’t just say all of that so that you would up your wash day frequency (more than once a week can rob your hair of the little natural oil that it has). However, it is a good idea to detox your scalp once every 4-6 weeks. Massage your scalp at least once a week (all you need is to warm up a carrier oil like jojoba or avocado, put a few drops of lavender in it and then use your fingertips to rub your scalp for 5-10 minutes), and to put more emphasis on washing your scalp than your hair. The key is to get your scalp clean so that your follicles are healthy; your hair doesn’t need that “squeaky feeling”, tho. The cleanser that drips down from your scalp is more than enough.

6. Rinse Hair in Cool Water

It feels divine to let hot water run down your hair and scalp, but it’s not the best thing for your hair’s progress. It’s because hot (or even super warm) water can end up drying out your hair and causing frizz. So, how can you avoid all of this? By actually rinsing your hair in cool water after your deep condition it (because you do that every wash day so that it’s extra moisturized, right?). Cool water is what will help to seal your hair’s cuticles while closing the pores on your scalp too.

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7. Dust More than Trim

Is there anything more annoying than uneven hair growth? When you want to get your hair down your back, probably not. The thing is, having one side of your hair that is thicker and grows faster is pretty normal, for two reasons. One reason is that the left vs. the right side of our bodies is not identical. This is why one of your feet or breasts may be bigger than the other. The other reason is that we tend to give one side of our hair more stress than the other when it comes to things like constantly sleeping on one side, parting our hair on one side—stuff like that.

While you would think that the remedy may be to constantly cut the “thriving side” so that it will catch up with the “weaker” one, that is actually gonna be more counterproductive than not. Your best bet would be to focus on dusting (lightly trimming) your ends (you can watch videos on how to do that here, here and here) and then keeping your hair in a protective style so that you don’t even have to think about it. Then, once the weaker side has made some real progress, you can get a trim to even things out. Make sense?

8. Remember That Protein Is Essential

Again, your hair is made up of protein, so it needs a lot of it to remain healthy and strong. Aside from what I already shared about getting more collagen into your system, something else that you should do is eat other foods that are high in protein. Meat is an automatic protein booster. If meat’s not your thing, check out “Vegetarian Or Vegan? Check Out These High Protein Foods.” for a list of other options.

Speaking of protein, it’s also really important that you give yourself a protein treatment, about every six weeks. It’s what will help to improve your hair’s elasticity so that it can endure more of the styling and manipulation that you do. A lot of people notice more breakage than they should because they miss this small-yet-impactful step. I hit on this specifically in “10 Things Your Natural Hair Needs In The Winter“.

9. Leave Permanent Dye Alone

There used to be a time when you couldn’t guess what color my hair was going to be on a pretty much weekly basis. Now that I know how detrimental hair dye and chemical relaxers are, especially to our health (“our” meaning Black women), I tend to use hair wax or a semi-permanent alternative (henna is a pretty good one too). Besides, if you are serious about gaining ½-1″ of growth each month, permanent hair color is gonna be your ultimate nemesis. The main reason why is because the ammonia in hair dye strips your tresses of their natural pigment (to deposit the color) which can make your hair brittle as all get out. And if your hair keeps breaking off, you’ll never reach your hair goals.

I know for some of you, it sucks to even think about going without dye. But sometimes we’ve gotta make sacrifices for the greater goal. Bottom line, color, or inches? In 2021, which one is it gonna be?

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10. Use Saw Palmetto Oil

If there’s a new oil that you’d like to try on your hair, my vote is sawed palmetto. It has a great reputation for preventing and even restoring hair loss because it blocks an androgen known as DHT from developing in our bodies. Why does that matter? Because DHT plays a direct role in hair loss. Saw palmetto also has a pretty good reputation for increasing hair density too. Not only that but it’s an oil that can decrease inflammation, treat urinary tract infections, and can regulate your man’s testosterone levels too. For internal health benefits, it’s probably best to consume it as a supplement (like maybe a liquid extract) or in tea form. If you want it to be the main oil that you use for those scalp massages that we already talked about, a cool place to purchase some is right here.

11. Apply Extreme TLC to Your Ends

One more time for those in the back. Again, a myth that you need to make sure to debunk for the rest of your life is your hair doesn’t grow. That is a damn lie. If you are living, your hair is growing. The reason why a lot of us don’t see proof of this is that our ends break off as fast as our roots grow. The way to prevent this from (further) happening to you is to treat the ends of your hair like you would a newborn baby in the sense that you choose to treat them oh so very gently. Seal them on wash day. Try and keep your hair in a protective style (even if that’s a wig) most days of the week. Wrap your hair up in a silk or satin scarf (or bonnet) at night (friction is your hair’s enemy too). Let straggly ends go. When your hair is out, keep your hands out of it. Simple things like this will keep your ends about as fresh as your roots.

12. Stick with What Works

Out of all of what I said, the main thing to remember when it comes to achieving hair growth is you’ve got to be as patient with the process as possible. The reality is, growing out your hair is a lot like baking some cookies—if you keep watching the oven or your roots, it’s going to seem like nothing is happening. However, if you cultivate a routine, stick with it and try and leave your hair alone as much as possible ( that doesn’t mean to stop moisturizing and washing your hair), by June you could have 4-6 inches, and by December…at least double that!

Alright. Let me get off of here and nurture these braids I’ve got so that I can walk the talk, chile. Let’s all check back in around the holidays to see how things have been going. Can’t wait to see you flipping your hair back. Whew, girl. #wink

Join our Hello Beauty Tribe by Subscribing! Be part of a exclusive community dedicated to YOU and your stories and all things BEAUTY. Be a part of a growing community of women from all over the world who come together to uplift, inspire, and inform each other on all things related to the glow up.

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Fall/Winter Is A Great Time To Gain Some (Hair) Inches

Not too long ago, a girlfriend of mine sent me a picture of her hair. After the shoot, about a decade of being natural, she decided that she wanted to get another perm and chile, her hair is all down her back. After I cursed her out (because she never struggles with hair growth while my tale is a bit different), I decided to use her as inspiration as I’m still on the journey to grow mine out. So far, its’ looking like this winter is going to do more for my hair than this past and summer did. And a big part of that is because I’m focused on implementing some fall/winter hair hacks that I learned about a couple of years ago, but I wasn’t the most consistent back then.

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If one of your 2021 goals is to gain a few more inches come, say, March, I’ve got 10 tips that could have you actually being the envy of your friends when it comes to hair length retention.

1. Eat More Vitamin C

healthline.com

First up, consider adding more foods that are high in Vitamin C into your diet. There are a couple of reasons why this is a good idea, as far as your hair is concerned. For one thing, Vitamin C is loaded with antioxidants that can help to reduce oxidative stress; that’s the kind of stress that can affect hair growth (and not in a good way) over time.

Another cool thing about Vitamin C is it helps to trigger the production of collagen. That’s a good thing because collagen is what helps to hold your hair follicles and the dermal layer of your hair together, so that your hair is able to retain length. Some Vitamin C foods that are in season this time of the year include broccoli, oranges, Brussel sprouts, kiwi, butternut squash, leafy greens and pears.

2. Do an Herbal Tea Rinse

I wouldn’t be surprised in the least if something that you’re drinking more of, right through here, are herbal teas. Aside from a cup of hot cocoa, there are few things that feel more warm and comforting than tea on a chilly day. Well, the next time you’re making some, make enough to create an herbal rinse for your beautiful hair. Remember, herbal tea is full of all kinds of nutrients so, pouring some of it onto your hair will help to promote healthy hair growth.

For instance, if you go with black tea, it can decrease the hormones in your body that may be triggering hair loss (black tea can reduce hair shedding too). Sage tea is able to prevent oil build-up on your scalp. Rosemary tea is known to increase hair growth. Green tea is the ultimate scalp soother. Peppermint tea stimulates your scalp and increases blood circulation. All you need to do is put two cups of water into a pot and add 2-3 tea bags of your preferred tea. Once the water is boiling, turn down the heat and let the tea steep for 15 minutes. Then, once it has cooled completely, pour the tea onto your hair after washing and conditioning it. Let the tea sit for 30 minutes and then rinse a final time with cool water (it will help to seal your cuticles). Your hair will instantly feel softer and your scalp will feel revived.

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3. Massage Your Scalp with Bergamot Oil

celebrityinsider.org

One of the best ways to de-stress is to give yourself a scalp massage. It can also benefit your hair in the long run because it helps to increase blood circulation to your scalp which ultimately encourages hair growth over time. If you want to really pamper your locks, warm up a little bit of bergamot oil. This spicy-yet-citrusy oil contains anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties that can help to soothe an irritated scalp and keep a healthy scalp in great shape, so that long-term growth can transpire. Just mix 5-7 drops of the oil into one-fourth cup of a carrier oil like almond, grapeseed or coconut. Zap the mixture in the microwave for 10-15 seconds, put some on your fingertips and then use your fingertips to gently massage your scalp for 15 minutes or so. It will feel heavenly and your scalp will only benefit from you doing it.

4. Turn the Heat Down

Because there is oftentimes less humidity during the colder seasons (more on that in sec), the less heat that you apply to your hair the better. Now, as someone who is team blowout, I’m not saying that you should go without your blow dryer or flat iron entirely. However, make sure that you use styling tools that are made out of ceramic, that you stay around a medium-level of heat, that you apply a thermal heat protectant and that you keep the “less is more” approach from now until spring. Heat-damaged hair is irreparable. The only real solution is to cut it off. If you keep that in mind, each and every time that you apply heat to your tresses, it should help you to constantly handle your hair with extreme care.

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5. At the Same Time, Apply Some Steam

On the flip side, something that can definitely do wonders for you hair is applying steam to it. Think of it as being a humidifier for your hair. Since you already know that you need to work a little overtime to make sure that you replenish the moisture that fall and winter zaps out, steaming your hair can help to lift the cuticles of your hair, so that water is able to deeply penetrate your tresses, giving it more elasticity and making it more manageable too. As a bonus, if you know that you struggle with dry scalp, steaming your hair can also soothe your scalp while increasing blood circulation to it too.

Some people steam their hair by putting a plastic bag over it and standing in a hot shower for about 10 minutes. Or, if you’d prefer to use a literal hair steamer, there are some good ones on the market that are less than a hundred bucks. I’ve got one of them for you right here.

6. Make Sure Water Is the First Ingredient in Your Hair Products

You might think that cold wet weather would equal your hair getting a lot of moisture, yet actually, that isn’t really the case. As the temperatures begin to drop, oftentimes that results in low humidity. Then, if you add to that cold harsh winds and then the central heat going up in your house in order to keep your body warm, again, it’s very easy for your hair to become zapped from the moisture that it requires in order to remain healthy and avoid breakage.

That’s why, if you do happen to be a bit of a product junkie, it’s a good idea to look for items that list water as its first (or at the very least, second) ingredient on its label. That way, you can be certain it’s something that is full of moisture that can help to keep your hair protected.

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7. Keep Your Ends Off of Your Clothes

Amazon

Personally, my favorite time of the year is the fall/winter. I like the beauty of the season. I also like how it provides us with the opportunity to layers our clothing like nobody’s business! Still, with all of the flannel, tweed, velvet, wool and corduroy that a lot of us are rocking, when we wear our hair in a style where our ends are constantly rubbing against the fabric—whew, that can not only zap moisture out of our hair but it can lead to constantly snagging (and fairy knots and breakage) too. So, as much as you can, try and style your hair in a way where it’s not rubbing against all of your fashionable wear. Also, on wash day, make sure to seal your ends. The more extra conditioner your ends receive (because they are the oldest part of your hair ‘n all), the better.

8. Invest in Some Baobab Oil 

Speaking of your ends, an oil that doesn’t get brought up much (tell me if you’ve heard of it in the comments) is baobab oil. Oh, but it should. Baobab oil is great because it’s loaded with fatty acids, Vitamin E, calcium, tannins (which are basically tea compounds) and beta-carotene (which is a precursor to Vitamin A). Something else that’s dope about this particular oil is it’s loaded with antioxidants and inflammatory properties. All of this works together to strengthen weak hair cuticles, deeply moisturize your strands and “feed” hair follicles, so that your hair can grow healthy and strong. Applying a little bit of this oil every morning and night to your ends can help to protect them from the bitter cold that can try and zap the moisture out of your tresses.

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9. Be Careful with the Hair Accessories

Remember what I said about how certain fabrics can dry your hair and snag your ends? Some hair accessories that are currently all the rage are hair clips, velvet hairbands, and fancy hairpins. Those things and a dope fedora are never gonna go out of style. Those are all prone to do some pulling and snagging too, so just make sure that, before putting them onto your head that you dab a bit of a light oil (like sweet almond, avocado or jojoba) and that you’re extra gentle when taking them out. Oh, and that you definitely don’t sleep with any hair accessories on your head. Oh, one more—that you make sure your wool hats are lined with satin.

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10. Wear More Wigs

So long as you’ve got on a quality wig and you take extremely good care of the hair that is underneath it (check out ” This Is The Way To Properly Care For Your Hair While Rockin’ A Wig” ), I think fall and winter are the perfect times to become Regine (the real ones know what I’m referring to) and rock your wig out! It’s a great way to keep your hands out of your head, protect your hair from the harsh weather elements and give your tresses the stressless time that it needs in order to grow. Plus, what keeps your hair warmer, right? Definitely bless yourself with a wig in the next couple of weeks. Watch your hair thrive because you did. Enjoy these next couple of seasons, sis. From head to toe. Literally.

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