I’ve had my braids out for a while. I’ll post a hair update after this article. I didn’t take any pictures during the take down process. It took me about 3 days to undo all of the braids. I wore mini braids for about 5 1/2 weeks.

Here are a two styles I wore while my hair was in braids. The first is just my bun. I’ve posted quite a few mini braid bun tutorials before. For this one, I used a small donut bun thing from the dollar store for more volume. The next style I wore to work. It’s two flat twists that join into a low bun.

 

On the topic of goals…I decided to make some goals for this year. Last year I made goals, but I didn’t focus on them as much as I should have…so many of them will be the same or similar.

  • Wear more protective styles- mini twists or mini braids. My hair does better in these than being out. When I have social events to go to, I like to have my hair out and big because it’s somewhat of a safety blanket for me… I need to find more styling options for my protective styles and be more confident in wearing them out while travelling or socializing.
  • Use less heat. Still working on this one. I think my ends do better when I’m not using a blow dryer or flat iron. I think diffusing is not all that great for my hair either. I did use a heat protectant on my curly hair last year, which is not typical of me.
  • Focus on problem areas. My nape and crown are still something I want to work on. I’m not so concerned about my sideburn or hairline…but my nape does bother me because I know it can be as long as the rest of my hair. I keep cutting my crown but eventually my layers will start to look odd so I need to focus on preventing thinning and breakage.
  • Get back into a regular routine. Last year, I did what I want to my hair when I wanted. Although my hair didn’t suffer from that, I think it’s better for fine hair if I deep conditioned (with protein) at least once a week. I have to get back to my Saturday DCs. I’ve also only left my DC in for 2-4 minutes lately…I think I need to get back to DCing outside of the shower for a longer period of time.
  • And of course…length goals! I’m actually really happy with the length of my hair right now. It took my haircut last summer for me to realize that I was happy with that length. And now I FINALLY feel like my hair is indeed long. I’ll keep growing it out but I’m not too concerned about any particular length in any particular time. I still would like to get to at least waist length but I’m not actively thinking about it.
 

I transitioned to natural hair for 5 months. During that time I did wear mini braids. The were slightly larger than what I wear now. And out of concern for my ends unraveling, I wore them in various buns and updos. It is possible to wear mini braids on transitioning or relaxed hair, but there will be challenges. Here are a few tips for braids for those transitioning from relaxed to natural hair.

 

  1. Keep transitioning hair detangled. Hair with textured roots and straight ends is much more prone to tangling and breakage than all-natural hair or all-relaxed hair.
  2. Stretch loose hair either with heat or without to create a uniform texture. Something as simple as airdrying transitioning hair in several ponytails will keep the roots stretched and the hair will be much easier to braid.
  3. Make larger braids. In most cases, the density of the roots vs the relaxed ends will differ significantly. To avoid the look of wispy, stringy ends, use larger parts and make larger braids so the ends won’t taper into only a few strands.
  4. Secure the ends of your mini braids before wetting them. Use hair bands to band the hair or put the mini braids in large twists or braids before washing them. Having secure ends will prevent unravelling caused by water. Make sure to rinse shampoo and conditioner out thoroughly and keep the mini braids secured until fully dry. This will also help prevent frizz.
  5. Stretch braids when drying. As with loose transitioning hair, the roots of the braids will shrink. After washing mini braids on transitioning hair, put the braids in ponytails to stretch the roots and create a more uniform look when dry.
  6. Use different products or different amounts of products if necessary. If your relaxed hair love protein, but your natural roots do not- add a protein leave in only to the ends of your hair and use a more moisturizing one on the roots. With your hair in mini braids, it will be easier to concentrate product on only the areas that need it.
  7. Style mini braids with rollers, bantu knots, braid outs, twist outs, and other textured styles in order to prevent the ends from unraveling. Straight hair does not hold in a braid, but wearing textured styles will help the mini braids last longer.
  8. Don’t leave the braids in as long. As stated before, transition hair tends to tangle more than relaxed or natural hair due to the two textures. To avoid a headache when taking out braids, don’t wear them for too long. About 4 weeks is a good amount of time to wear one set of mini braids.
  9. Embrace the unraveling when it’s time to undo the braids. If you are on your last week or days of wearing mini braids, let the ends unravel on their own. It will help speed up the take down process.
 

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Save on QRedew handheld hair steamer now. Use code: Lucky for free shipping March 13-17, 2015.

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I posted an article over a year ago about my plans and goals for my hair in 2014. I had forgotten about this but Youtuber TheKGLifestyle just posted a video on 2015 goals and it jogged my memory. So here’s an update on how I did throughout 2014…

  • Wear more protective styles. I think I did a lot better with this in my newly natural days. I think I only wore mini braids once last year. On a regular basis, I did wear my hair mostly in large twists for the week. I worked out a lot and that was the most convenient for me. That counts right? right? 😬 I usually were my hair in a high bun daily anyway.
  • Use less heat. This one was sort of a pass and fail. 😕 I wanted to stop straightening so much and stop diffusing my wash and goes. I did well with not straightening- mostly because it takes so much time and in the humidity, my hair just doesn’t stay straight. But in 2014, I was the queen of the wash and go and I diffused my hair every. single. time. I wore back to back WnGs and redid them about every 4-5 days. I probably used more heat that usual. But I did sit under a hooded dryer occasionally. My hair just won’t airdry in a reasonable amount of time.
  • Use more oils and butters. I did finally restock my shea butter and make a shea butter mix to seal the entire length of my hair. I did find that it was really difficult to cowash off so I cut back. I have been coating my mini braids in shea butter. I didn’t do oil rinses consistently or try new butters. 😐
  • Focus on problem areas. I didn’t think about the hair at my widows peak or edges. I trimmed the hair at my crown a lot. It’s still shorter and thinner than it should be. 😕 I tried to do my buns differently so I wouldn’t stress that area. My nape still needs help too.
  • Find an all-natural, hard protein product. I used neutral protein filler from Sally’s a lot. It’s not all natural but it’s cheap and can be diluted to last a while. I still haven’t tried the Aubrey Organics, but I plan to when I take these braids out.
  • Find hair perfume or styling product with a pleasant scent that lingers. I didn’t find a leave in that I love, but I bought the Terrescentials Left Coast Lemon clay wash and it smells great. Even though you rinse it out the scent does linger a bit. I also use lemon and orange essential oils to scent my homemade products.
  • Repurchase staples. This is the one area that I absolutely followed through on. 👏 I kept a stock of my Giovanni conditioners, my cholesterol DC, and my Shea Moisture leave in.
  • Finally, some length goals… Grow hair to waist length. I’m still not claiming waist length. 😮 I got a few haircuts in 2014. I actually miss how good my wash and go looked when I first got it cut. I’m toying with the idea of getting another cut…
WnG May 2014 vs Jan 2015

WnG May 2014 vs Jan 2015

 

I set my mini braids on sponge rollers overnight. To style them I put all my hair on one side and bobby pinned the braids in place.

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I finally braided my hair again. I used the same routine as always. You can find my detailed braiding routine in my ebook. I shampooed with a product from my hotel in NYC. It was an organic brand called Pharmacopia and I actually really liked the shampoo and conditioner (that I used while on vacation). I conditioned with Giovanni Nutrafix…I had forgotten how much I loved this stuff! I left it on for a few minutes then finger detangled.

I used my Shea Moisture hibiscus styling milk (can’t remember the exact name) as a leave in. Afterwards, I coated the whole length of my hair in my shea butter mix and put it my hair in 6 braids to dry overnight. I took down 1 section at a time and braided in rows. I only used a rat tail comb to part, I did not use a brush or comb at all to detangle (last time I used one was in November). Here’s the method I use for parting my hair for braiding- Parting on a Grid.

It took me 3 days to braid my hair. I braid for a few hours and stop when I want to. I could have easily finished the last bit on day 2, but I didn’t bother. I probably had a 1 inch square section left, lol. I didn’t take any pictures of the process because I’ve done so so many times before. Look under the “My Mini Braids” category to see all my braid related posts. Specifically, here is my last set of mini braids from July 2014.

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I haven’t washed these yet, I’m enjoying the look without the shrinkage. It’s weird that my braids are long now. I still remember when they didn’t even reach my ears. I did curl my ends with sponge rollers the first day. I wore them in a bun so they got a little crinkly. For these pictures, I smoothed the braids out and bumped the ends with a flat iron on low heat. This was the first time I used heat on my braids and I liked the results. I’ll most likely wear these for about 6 weeks.

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I’ve been a bad blogger lately. I have quite a few articles that have been sitting in draft form for months. In the next few weeks I plan to return to my weekly publishing schedule.

I’ve also braided my hair for the first time in a long time. I did them over 3 days and finished them on Monday. I’m taking pictures for the blog today and I hope to have that post up soon. Here’s a preview of my mini braids!

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Thank you so much for the continued support of MiniBraidMethod.com! I really appreciate all the loyal readers and new guests. Here’s how the blog did in 2014. Mini Braid Method’s 2014 Year in Blogging.

 

I’ve seen a ton of videos on my YouTube subscription feed with vloggers using the Curls Control Pastes (Blueberry and Passionfruit) as an all-over styler. The results looked good so I wanted to give it a try. I’ve reviewed the passion fruit curl control paste before but I only used it for a light hold around my edges.

From experience, I know that the product does not work well with other products. I didn’t want to deal with buildup so I airdried my hair with a small amount of Giovanni conditioner. When my hair was about 70% dry, I finger detangled and added some oil and the control paste. It was very sticky and made it really difficult to work with my hair. I put in large two strand twists and tried not to manipulate my hair too much to avoid snagging and breakage. I styled my hair for my  sister’s graduation. I prefer 2nd day hair, so as usual, I took the twists out and put them up in a bun.  When I took the twists down that night, the definition was pretty good.

The next morning, I took the bun down. I lost some of the definition, but as the day went on my hair got poofier. I expected it to hold up better. It was a bit chilly for Florida and my hair did not last the afternoon. I got up around 6am and the 1st pic shows my hair around 10:30am. I do like big fluffy hair but what I got was like day 5 hair in just a few hours. The 2nd pic was probably taken around 3pm.

 

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We were heading to Disney the next morning, so I had to do something with my hair. Because of the stickiness of the product, it was really difficult to restyle my hair. I added more oil and spritz it with a bit of water. I put my hair in large braids, I think there were about 10. I took the braids out the next morning and put my hair in a ponytail. At the end of the day, I took the ponytail down. I did like how my hair had movement. It flopped straight down and didn’t stay in the shape of the ponytail.

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Overall, I disliked this product as an all over styler. It’s definitely better for smoothing styles. It’s too sticky and makes it near impossible to work with fine hair without feeling like it’s going to snag. My hair felt dry as well and didn’t want to add a lot of leave in because I didn’t want any white product showing. The final style did not hold up well enough for me to use this product again in this way. Maybe this is one of those things that are better suited for short-haired or coarse-haired naturals.

I’m back from China and still adjusting to the time zone change. Thanks for sticking with me during the Black Friday sales post. I hope you all got everything you wanted. And I really appreciate my sister for keeping up with the sales info and posting timely updates. Thanks! :)

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Here’s a roundup of Black Friday (November 28, 2014) natural hair care vendor sales from around the web. Some listings include Cyber Monday and Small Business Saturday deals. Click on the vendor names to visit their respective websites. I will be out of the country with limited time to use the internet while away. I’m having my sister maintain the blog while I’m away, so please be patient with any updates to the list and always rely on the vendors for the most accurate and up-to-date information.

  • Alikay Naturals- 11/27 Black Friday Eve Sale 30% discount applied on all orders. 11/28 only Receive 40% discount on all online orders. Not valid on kits and collections, services, gift cards or memberships. No coupon code needed.
  • All Things O’Natural- Friday 11/28 Enjoy 30% off storewide on orders of $30+. Use Code NATTYFRIDAY30.
  • Annebelle’s Perfect Blends- All November, use code BEAUTY for 20% off. BF sale 11/28  midnight – 11/30-Use code THANKFUL for 35% off.
  • Aubrey Organics25% off plus free shipping on orders of $25+.
  • Bee Mine- Doorbuster 11/27, 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm EST. Take 35% off with code BLK28FRI, $30 minimum purchase. 11/27, 8:01pm EST – 11/28 midnight EST. Take 30% off with BLK28FRI on $30 minimum purchase. Cyber Monday 12/, 12:00 am – 12:00 pm EST take 20% off with code CYMON1 on $20 minimum purchase. /span>
  • Beija-Flor Naturals- 11/24-12/1 receive 25% off + Free Shipping on all order of $75+ Code: BFNHoliday
  • Bekura Beauty- (Formerly known as B.A.S.K Beauty) 11/28-11/30 From 12am to 12am EST 25-30% off plus free U.S. Continental shipping on orders $100+.
  • BlensBlend- Everything on sale 11/27-11/28.
  • BoBeam Natural Hair Products- 11/28 – 12/1, Use code BFW25 for 25% off.
  • Brown Butter Beauty- 11/27- 12/1 Take 25% off entire shop (while supplies last). Use Code: blackfriday 
  • Camile RoseFriday, November 28th 12:00am EST – Tuesday, December 1st 12:00am EST. Enjoy 25% Off all Camille Rose Naturals products – no exclusions!  Use promo code: crnblackfriday. Offer is only available on www.camillerosenaturals.com.
  • Carol’s Daughter- This offer is valid 11/26 – 11/30. Free Shipping!  Get 30% off any order with code HOLIDAY30 OR 40% off any order over $50 with code HOLIDAY40.  Until 11/29 Get a FREE Jada’s Dynamic Duo with any $25 purchase when using the code FREEDUOCyber Monday, 12/1, get a FREE Monoi Repairing Hair Mask($22 value) with any $40 purchase plus 40% off any order $50 or more with code HOLIDAY40. This offer is valid 12/1-12/2
  • CC’s Naturals- 11/27- 5pm – 11/27 11:59pm 40%off. 11/28- 12am – 12/02 11:59pm 30%off. No codes needed. As well as always free domestic (US only) on all orders of $35 or more.
  • Coastal Scents- 11/27- 12/1 Enjoy 50% off all Coastal Scents.
  • Curl Junkie-Thursday, November 27, 2014, 5pm EST through Friday, November 28, 2014, 5pm EST, we are offering 25% off orders subtotaling $50 or more (excluding sample sets and pre-made sets/kits).  Use the code THANKS2014. Also, for those days we are keeping our flat shipping rates and free shipping (Continental US) offer via UPS Ground on orders of $100 or more!
  • Curl Mart- Grey Friday 25% off plus $5 domestic shipping. No code needed. Use code cm15 for extra 15% off.
  • Curlformers- 11/28-12/1 Special Weekend Sales 20% off Curlformers products.
  • Curls- Black Friday only. 50% off any Curls or Curly Q’s product. FREE Passion Fruit Curl Control Paste with every order. Use code BLACKCURLSROCK.
  • Curly Kinks- 11/28-12/1 Entire order 30%off. No coupon code necessary. Excludes Gift Sets and Sample Sets.
  • Darcy’s Botanicals- Friday & Saturday: November 28-29 save 25% off total purchase. Each purchase to include a surprise sample product!
  • Donna Marie- TBD
  • Hairfinity- 11/28-12/1 Get 20% off Hairfinity vitamins use code Black14.
  • Hairitage Hydration- Shop Closing. Pre-Black Friday sale Facebook Fans Only. 50% off Code FBFAN50
  • Hairveda-The Veda-licious Black Friday Event 11/28 30-45% off select items. Doorbusters 12am-1am EST.
  • Happy Nappy Honey- 11/28-11/30 Doorbuster deals 45% off.
  • Hattache- 11/28 12:00am PST- 11:59pm PST 25% off $30. Use code 2014THANKS.
  • HotCombs- Save 10% use code THANKFUL10.
  • Hydroquench Systems- 40% off entire store. Use code HQ40off.
  • Hydrotherma Naturals- Use coupon code thanks for 20% off. Sales starts Friday 11/28 at 12AM EST and ends Tuesday 12/2 at 12:01AM EST.
  • Jane Carter Solutions- Until 11/31 Free shipping on purchases on $50 or more.
  • JessiCurl- 11/28-11/30 Use code THANKS at checkout and save 30% on all 8 ounce items.
  • Karen’s Body Beautiful- 30% off Black Friday sale starts now. Small Business Saturday save 25% ends Sunday.
  • Koils by Nature- 11/28 6am- 2pm (EST) 30% Off no minimum purchase required (not valid with gift sets, samples or sample sets, holiday boxes) Free Shipping on ALL Orders $50 or more (for US domestic ONLY international shipping rates will apply) Free 2oz Nourishing Hair & Body Butter Sugary Sweet with all orders $50 or more! Use code BlackFriday2014.
  • KomazaHairCare- Friday 11/28 get 20% Off Online Purchases Of $50 or More. Enter promo code 112814.
  • Kurlee Belle- 11/26-12/1 Receive 25% off purchase use code THANKS25.
  • Milk and Honey Hair- 11/28 – 12/1, ends 11:59PM EST. 30% off Use Code blackfriday14
  • Miss Jessie’s- 11/14-12/16 Exclusively at Target BOGO 50% off.
  • Mozeke Products- 11/28 Enjoy 40% off select products.
  • My Honey Child- Starts Thanksgiving at 9:00pm (eastern) and ends Friday at 11:59 pm (eastern). 50% off entire order (8oz sizes only). Use code MYHC
  • Nature’s Gate-  Take 20% off all of our famous shampoos and conditioners, just use code 20Hair1114.
  • Naturalsis72- (reversible satin bonnets, satin lined beanies and hair butters) 11/27 8PM – 11/29. Use code BF15 for 15% off. Free shipping over $60 or $5 flat rate. Cyber Monday- 11/30, use code CM10 for 10% off. Free shipping over $60 or $5 flat rate.
  • Nyenzo Natural Boutique- 11/28 6am EST- 2pm EST 30% off no minimum purchase required. Use code BlackFriday2014.
  • Obia Natural Hair Care- Until 11/28 Enjoy 15% off your entire purchase. Use code BLKF14. 11/25-27 40% off use code BEATBLACKFRIDAY. 11/28-12/1 30% off using code BLACKFRIDAY
  • Original Moxie- 11/28-12/1 Get 30% off $30+ with code OMBF2014 (Also coupon for $5 off next order)
  • Ouidad- Now through Sunday, you can get 5 free samples and free shipping on EVERY order on our new website.
  • Oyin Handmade- 25% off everything and free shipping. Coupon code #BLACKFRIDAY
  • Q-Redew- 11/28 $20 off 12am-11am use code BLACKFRIDAY. 11/29-12/1 $10 off use code CYBERSALE.
  • Sally Beauty Supply- 11/27-11/30 Thanksgiving Weekend Specials. Curlformer Kits save $15. Curlformer Packs save $5. Buy 1 get 1 Free Shea Moisture and Eden Body Works products.
  • SDOT Beauty- 11/28-12/1 Discount 25% off. No code needed.
  • Shescentit- 11/28 – 12/1, 11:59PM EST Receive 30% off, free shipping on domestic orders over $60, free gift with orders over $75, free samples with purchase (while supplies last) Use Code givethanks14.
  • Soultanicals11/28 Special doorbuster goodies midnight-3am EST. Get 40% off all goodies plus free shipping on all orders $60+. Doorbusters (for all orders over $75) free soultanicals goodie bag with products valued at $25. Small Business Saturday receive 35% off and a free 2oz sample. Cyber Monday receive 35% off and free shipping. Use code BFSOULW.
  • Tasti Kiss Essentials- Get 25% off your entire order use code THX25 at checkout. Sale starts at 8:59 PST and will end Black Friday at Midnight, PST
  • Uncle Funky’s Daughter- 12/1 Cyber Monday 25% off your entire purchase. Use Code CYBERFUNKDAY.
  • Ynobe Shop- 11/26 – 12/2, 7:00PM – 7:00PM EST receive 25% off orders of $60+, select 8oz products for $12, free shipping for all domestic orders. Use Code HOLIDAY14.

Please rely on vendors for most accurate and up to date sale details. The list will be updated when I get more information. Stay tuned! 

3 vendors added  on 11/23

Updated 11/26 and 11/27. More update to come. Stay tuned!!

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