Old School Press n Curl?

Hello. My name is Imari and my hair has been natural for about 2 years (but I do not wear my natural hair.) I am African American and my natural hair type is 4C, so it is very dry, kinky, coily, and shrinks. I mostly wear sew ins & micros, and Im currently using Black Earth products by Talia Waajid. I was wanting to know if you could give me some advice on a few concerns I have about my hair.

1) Since my hair is very kinky & coily, would it be healthier for my hair if I were to get an old school Press N Curl, instead of a Dominican Blowout?
2) What are the best conditioners and daily moisturizers to use to keep my natural hair healthy while Im wearing weaves/braids?

Thank you so much

Hola Imari – what a beautiful name :)

Let me first address the Black Earth products. I have never heard of them. However, if they work for you, keep them. People often make the mistake of switching products because their friend, or someone else is using them. What works for someone else may (or may not) work for you. Me entiendes?

Now, press n curl vs. Dominican blowout… I think you already know what I will say, but I’ll say it anyway.

I never, ever claim that Dominican blowouts are without risks. For instance, some stylists pull the hair WAY too forcefully. Applying too much tension to hair, regardless to whether it’s natural, relaxed or somewhere in between is never a good idea. Some stylists also like to grill the chicken, then deep fry it. What I mean by that is they will do the rolos (indirect heat), then blow out the hair from root to ends (indirect heat). They are like grilling chicken; it’s a healthier way to cook your chicken. Instead of stopping there, they will then flatiron the hair (direct heat), or bump up the ends with a hot curling iron (direct heat); that’s the deep frying.

In plain, old English – that’s just TOO MUCH HEAT! Ya!

So, I turn the question to you. What’s the goal? Healthy hair? or “Pretty hair?”

I do not advocate the use of direct heat, particularly when it is your main styling technique. I also do not advocate a piss-ass Dominican stylist if she’s pulling too much, not conditioning enough, just not handling your hair properly.

I would also be concerned with the health of my natural hair if I were wearing too many sew ins or rocking micros for too long. The styles can be gorgeous, but they threaten the integrity of your own hair. Look, today, you can run out and buy a lace-front wig, change your style in a second, without really messing with your own tresses. This is not to say that sew-ins should be banned. Nor, should you stop getting micros altogether, but you need to be mindful that every styling technique, other than wearing your hair carefree and au naturale, comes with certain risks.

Ultimately, if it were my hair, I’d opt for a Dominican blowout, only straightening my roots and focusing on the health of my existing hair.
The products that I use are Baba de Caracol – this and Chi Silk Infusion are my staples. The only other product that I MUST HAVE is Aphogee two step protein treatment.

I know I probably did not give you the answer you were looking for, but this is a very tough question for me to answer.



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7 Responses to Old School Press n Curl?

  1. Krystal says:

    Black Earth products are really big for naturals who braid/loc up their curls. I’ve never used them before but I’ve read good things about them online. If you like it then I love it!

    Mamita, it all boils down to what works best for your beautiful kinky curls and your lifestyle. Before you focus on which method to use to straighten them, I recommend that you first work on getting your hair as strong and healthy as possible. Here are some simple tips:
    1. Try to wash your hair once a week. I know that you have braids/sew-ins but you can’t let that style prevent you from keeping your scalp clean.
    2. Deep condition once a week. It’s tedious and sometimes you just don’t feel like it. Plan a “Pretty Girl” day at least once a week. I like to do my hair, experiment with makeup and paint my nails. It’s the perfect way to unwind and pamper you!
    3. Repair/stop breakage or damage with a protein treatment. La Negra’s fave is Aphogee 2 Step Protein Treatment. Sold at Sallys and tons of other BSS.

    Be careful with the braids/sew-ins. Please please please don’t over do it! Traction Alopecia is real: http://www.traction-alopecia.com/.

    Sure, I’m bias. Maybe I’m traumatized and still slightly embarrassed from the hot comb that burned my forehead when I was in middle school…LMAO. But I definitely suggest getting a Dominican Blowout. There is great video that shows you step by step how to set your rolos in the How To section (http://www.dominicanblowout.com/how_to/putting-rollers-rolos-in-the-back-video/) and then how to blow out your roots (http://www.dominicanblowout.com/how_to/domincan-blowout-technique-video/).

    Like I tell my little one: try it, you might like it!

    I hope that this helps

  2. Imari says:

    Thanx for the advice, ladies! Im gonna try the Baba de Caracol leave in conditioner & the Chi Silk Infusion. I know about the Aphogee treatment. Great stuff!

    Im a little confused about the Press n Curl vs. Dominican Blowout. I thought that the Dominican Blowout would damage my hair wayyy more than the Press n Curl, due to the many steps of heat thats required for a blowout (at least in the videos ive seen). I would most def have to have it professionally done because I just simply cannot do it myself. It would look a HOT MESS. My hair is too thick and nappy for me to do the blowout myself. My end result would have me looking like Simba from The Lion King O_o Ughhh! Hair is such a battle. Anywho, If i get it pressed (not curled) there would be less steps with the heat. I just thought a Press would be healthier?

  3. Imari says:

    Im back! :-D Lol. Also, whats the best brand/kind of Flat iron & blow dryer to use? Thanx!

  4. LaNegra says:

    Imari, it’s not just about the number of steps, it’s about the type of heat. For instance, if you have rollers in your hair and intend to sit under the dryer, you can change the setting to medium heat, or even cool hair. In fact, you do not even have to sit under the dryer…just let your hair air-dry (this doesn’t work for me…I could spend a month waiting for my hair to dry). If you decided to blow out your hair, you are still using indirect heat. When you use hot combs, flat irons and curling irons the fire is coming in direct contact with your hair.

    I’m not trying to talk you out of getting a press and curl, just tell you the difference.

  5. LaNegra says:

    I have never, ever used a flat iron, cannot help you there….ladies, if you can recommend one…please help out :)

    I use a Turbo blower, made by Pibbs. I haven’t tried any new blowers lately, but will be testing some to see how they work out.

  6. Krystal says:

    I love my sedu. I bought it about a year ago and it came with a free heat-proof pouch (which has saved my marble sink top) and a free mini iron (I resold on ebay…my roots literally laughed at that thing…) with you purchase from folicia.com: http://www.folica.com/tools/flat-irons/solia-tourmaline-ceramic-ion-flat-iron-one-and-one-quarter-inch-plus-free-heat-proof-pouch.

    As far as Press n curl v DB: When I rolo my hair, it so much more moisturized and has the most awesome bounce and sway. Moisture = healthy hair with less breakage and damage. Who could really ask for more. Anywho…try both and see which one you like better. Its all about whats best for your hair…My hair just happens to adore rolos and dbs!

  7. Imari says:

    I recently learned about the Sedu! I was wanting to buy one but didnt want to spend that much on an iron. I have one more question and then I will leave you both alone! Lol :-) Have you ever heard of a silkening? What exactly is it/what does it consist of? Thanks very much!

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