Hair

Twist Out 2020 (+ Mini Product Reviews): Prep

How have you been styling your hair recently? Honestly, my headwrap collection has been having a grand parade around my house while working from home. But twists, whether big fat ones to just tuck my hair away under a wrap or mini twists as my style to flaunt my fro, they are a natural go to for naturals. Well, they are for me anyway. But the thing I like the most about twists is that you can make a second hairstyle from them – The Twist Out. I haven’t yet mastered it but it’s definitely a work in progress that is progressing in the right direction.

After my most recent length check, I put my hair in Doo Doo plaits. They are simple, easy, I don’t need to worry about parting my hair and ever so stylish (not). I just moisturise, braid and forget about it. They are a means to an end, but by no means the style I want you to see. BUT after watching a few Natural Hair videos on YouTube, I wanted to give a twist out a go again. And this is a twist out on type 4 hair, so expect a type 4 twist out!

products for twists, afrocenchix, taliah waajid, revlon, tea tree, peppermint oil, clips, combs
The Twist Kit

Prep Kit

My hair was clean and detangled and stretched in the Doo Doo Plaits so I was good to go. Whilst still in the plaits I used the Afrocenchix Soothe Lightweight Scalp Oil. I generally use Olive Oil for all my oiling needs but this one is something else. Grapeseed Oil. Almond Oil. Wheatgerm Oil. A whole slew of essential oils – Grapefruit, Lemon, Sweet Orange, Lemongrass, Eucalyptus, Cedarwood and Lavender. I’m fairly certain that the kitchen sink was in there too. It truly is a delight for the nasal passages.

And not bad for something that was free from Afro Hair and Beauty Live last year. As per the instructions, I massaged my scalp for 3 minutes after dripping the oil through the applicator. I’m writing this a little while after and I can literally smell that gorgeous fruity scent just hanging on the edge of my memory.

After that little massage moment, I gently undid the plaits. Because I was only a few days since washing, my hair was still quite moisturised inside the plaits. The hair on the outside of a protective style sort of gets sacrificed a little for the duration of the style, while the inner hair thrives as it retains that moisture better. When I say sacrifice, it’s not like the hair on the outside is dying and breaking off but there is always a discernible difference between the inner and outer plait, updo, pineapple, whatever hairstyle.

Final step of this stage of the prep is to detangle. The pic above is of a Denman but I actually used this bad boy.

woeful to frofull, wide tooth comb, afro pik

I don’t know what this type of comb is officially called but I felt like it would be gentler than the Denman considering my hair was like 90% detangled and you don’t want to cause extra unnecessary stress where you don’t need to.

Leave-In

I broke out the Taliah Waajid Shea Coco Condition Daily Leave In Conditioner which I’ve had lying around for the longest time (like forever). I remember using a similar leave-in spray (Flora & Curl) and not being 100% convinced in the earlier stages of my journey. My main criticism for these type of sprays is usually the dispenser doesn’t get your hair wet or even damp easily. However, I wanted to be able to take these twists at some point this week(!) so I didn’t want to get my hair too wet.

On the plus side, it does smell delightful but for those that don’t like it, a warning, it is very coconut heavy. I’ve found that I actually do like this sort of spray now and use this particular one as part of my moisture routine and as a refresher spray for my kids, especially my youngest, loosest curly baby. And it’s a great way to get some moisture into a protective style.

Oil

The EDEN Bodyworks Peppermint Tea Tree Hair Oil was another product getting dusty in my cupboard. So why not break it out for this momentous occasion? I would say that I don’t like the instructions which seems like a funny thing to say. It says to spray directly onto the hair but it comes out as a stream not a spray. Therefore, I ignored the instructions and sprayed it onto my hands and did what I assume they mean by the praying hands method to get it evenly coating my hair. I would say I used a generous amount of oil but for you, the amount will depend on when you last moisturised or when you plan to next moisturise.

Another consideration is watching how much you use if you don’t like Peppermint or Tea Tree as it really smells weird mixed with fruitier smelling products but the scents all fade…eventually.

Styler

I really liked this the last time I used it. The Revlon Realistic Black Seed Oil Twisting Pudding is something I very much like and I think it does help hold a style. Smells great but the sort of gummy/ slimy consistency can be a little off putting. A lot of puddings and custards have this sort of texture. I have 3 children aged 8 and under so anything even vaguely slimy makes my eye twitch.

The Denman did come back out to make sure the Pudding was evenly distributed across the hair because this is probably the most important product for this style. I wasn’t worried about over manipulation at this point as my hair was almost completely tangle free.

I know some of my fellow type 4 chicks will know the heartache of detangling your hair, breathing and then finding more tangles. Like, really? I haven’t even moved!

The Twisting Pudding is supposed to be used on dry hair which is another thing that makes my eye twitch but my hair wasn’t completely dry due to the previous few steps of moisturisation(?). And I proceeded to twist the sections of my hair, making sure to add a little bit of oil to my fingers as I went. Reliable sources have suggested this helps to reduce frizz when twisting and untwisting hair.

juicy thick twists woeful to frofull
Juicy! Thick! Shiny!

Remember to be gentle! As much as you can be when manipulating your tresses. Be gentle!

My hair looked really thick and fluffy at the roots but I’m not sure if this picture adequately illustrates that. I immediately thought that I probably should’ve flat twisted to my scalp. Then I remembered, my flat twists are abominable. So a standard two strand twist is the way to go (if you don’t know how, you know YouTube has always got your back). Obviously, there is always the worry that the twists, for whatever reason are “wrong” and will affect the final style but you’ve done it now.

Are they tight enough? Are they too tight? Did I do enough twists? Will the style hold? Will I untwist prematurely? It’s all a bit of a gamble and a waiting game. You will just have to pray to whoever you pray to, wait and see.

I loosely pulled these large twists into a low poyntail. This is a little victory for me. My hair is starting to get to a length where I can do things that long haired people take for granted. A. LOW. PONYTAIL! Progress peeps! I then loosely tied a satin headwrap over the top and put myself to bed.

The Final Stretch…Of Prep

The whole twisting portion took about 90 minutes which isn’t bad to moisturise and twist 10 twists. Also, I am quite slow, just in case you feel that was too long! You can do it on a Friday (or literally any day during lockdown) while watching a film and just relax after a long week at work.

If you have somewhere to go while your twists are drying, you can always style it out with a headwrap – check out some styles I’ve tried in the past – here.

I know some people take their hair being in twists as an opportunity to trim. Not that day for me though!

And that’s the prep done! Now this blog post seems a little long. But doing your hair is a whole experience and I wanted you to come on this little journey with me. Pop over to the next post (available from 21.07.20) to find out how The Twist Out came out and fared over the week.

Let’s keep growing together!
xx Lee xx
Comments welcome below. Please feel free to share any Twist Out tips you have!

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