My New Hair Moisture Routine


This post is for anyone who is trying to figure out a good routine for keep their hair moisturized. Not interested in hair care? Run away, before you get caught up in the parade of natural hair jargon and products! I’ve come up with a new way for my hair, and so far it seems to be yielding good results. Keep in mind, not all natural hair types are the same, so what works for me, may not work for you. Below, I’ve shared what products I use for my co-washing / moisturizing and daily moisturizing routines.

Co-Wash and Moisturize

Because it is a lengthy process, I only do this once or twice a week. First I co-wash (use conditioner instead of shampoo) my hair twice in the shower. The first time around, I use Fructis Triple Nutrition  or Africa’s Best Hair Mayonnaise.

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I like these products because they do a great job of cleansing my hair without drying it out. I start out with a generous amount in my palm and dab it throughout my hair before using my fingertips to lift any dirt or buildup from my scalp. I usually finger detangle when needed. For the second co-wash, I use Hollywood Beauty Olive Cholesterol Deep Conditioning Creme or v05 Strawberries and Cream Conditioner. I love using both of these products because they soften my hair and because they have a  lot of slick (they make your hair feel slick so its easy to manipulate), it so much easier to detangle my hair before rinsing. I rarely rinse all of the conditioner out. When it comes to natural hair, moisture is your friend, dryness your biggest foe.

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After that, I just section my hair into small ponytails to keep it from bunching together. Then, one at a time mind you, I add shea moisture curl enhancing smoothie and smooth it (use my fingertips to rub the product in my hair from root to tip) into my hair. Then I add a little  Jam Conditioning Hair Gel before putting it into a 2 strand twist, smoothing as I go. By the end of the process, I usually have 25 big twists in my hair. All that’s left to do is slip on a scarf and go to bed.

jam mega hold      JAM Extra Hold

Daily Moisturizing

To keep my hair soft and manageable between co-washes, I spritz it with a mixture of water and v05 conditioner. Then I just seal (trap the water and conditioner so that it doesn’t dry out) with canola oil or Africa’s Best Kids Organics Growth Oil Remedy. Using oil helps keep moisture from escaping and provides a deeper level of hydration for each strand of hair.

growth oil canola oil

Positive Perspective and Preparation


Good morning guys,

I had to take a short hiatus from posting wardrobe capsule entries because of all of the work that goes into moving. We are almost done getting everything organized and put away. It will probably take a few more days to get situated so sorry for the delay in advance, lol. Ok, now on to today’s subject. We ran into some unexpected problems during our move, but thanks to preparation and positivity, we were able to get through it without the day being ruined. I wanted to share the experience with you guys while counting our blessings (labeled as B#) and optimistic moments (listed as O#).

Yesterday our car had to be towed to the mechanic after suddenly shutting down on us the night before. We’d already spent almost $800 on getting some repairs recently so, needless to say, this was not the best news ever. Thankfully, because we’ve been paying extra on our bills lately, we were able to use those funds, plus the cash we put away monthly for car maintenance/replacement to cover the repairs the first go round (B1). The tow guy’s customer service skills over the phone sucked, but our mechanic covered the fee so Brandon ignored his attitude and kept going (B2, O1). We scheduled movers to come by and transport all of our heavy containers and bedroom furniture into our new place but without our car, we weren’t going to be able to get the rest of our things out. This kind of got us down but Brandon and I were so excited about moving that we were able to stay positive (O2). Before the movers came, we placed everything we could into the living room and tucked Justice into the nearest empty bedroom with the door closed so he wouldn’t be stressed or confused by the sight of strangers taking things from our apartment. last year, he was so alarmed that he began barking and howling as to say ‘what’s going on here?!’.

When the movers arrived, they’d mistakenly listed both our new and old apartments as ground level dwellings, only to realize they’d have to take several heavy items down the stairs. One of the movers seemed a bit irritable but the other two were pleasant so we fed off of their energy (O3). My husband and I grabbed what we could and carried our belongings to the moving truck alongside the movers. It was hot, as usual for Texas, and we probably went up and down the stairs 20 times by the end.  Once we were finished, we decided to give them a big tip from our ‘moving fund’ as our way of saying thanks (B3). This left us with $600 or so left in moving funds (B4). We wanted to use the cash to buy furniture for our home office but that idea went out the window when the mechanic called. I’m kinda paranoid when it comes to mechanics, because it seems like no matter where we’ve gone over the years, a new problem is discovered after taking our car in for repairs and this was no exception. As Brandon chatted with him on the phone, I could tell what he was hearing wasn’t good. We needed $700. . .

We didn’t have that much money available in the bank to cover the fee; we’d already spent our monthly car savings on the first round of repairs. If we were going to move the rest of our things and entertain family this weekend, we needed our car fixed asap! At this point, I wanted to freak out, fuss and maybe threaten the car guy in case he was trying to get over on us for good measure but I could hear something (maybe the holy spirit) tell me to stay calm. Then we realized that we could use the remaining ‘moving fund’ cash along with a little from savings to take care of the car (B5). Yes, this would mean not being able to furnish our place as soon as we’d hoped but we wouldn’t have to worry about being short on any bills this month (B6, O4)! Today, I took the bus to work and Brandon carpooled with a co-worker, so neither of us had to take time off (B7) and by the time we get home, our car will be waiting for us in the parking lot (B8).

Prepare financially for days like this. It will save you from stress and conflict later.
For the last four months, we’ve applied the principles from Financial Peace University by saving as much as we can to move into a new apartment. To make sure we didn’t spend the money on something else, we took it out of the bank and placed the cash into an envelope. When the car broke down, we were able to use some of this money to cover repairs instead of having to stress over where the money would come from and potentially stir up trouble for other financial obligations. At the end of the day, we only needed to round up $40 from the bank.

Don’t let a bunch of minor inconveniences ruin your day.
This is something I’m learning to do as my life goes on. I used to complain and get upset quickly when things started to go awry. I’m not 100% cured of this habit but I’m getting better. Several things didn’t go as we’d hoped they would. Between car troubles, irritable service workers, the heat outside and suddenly having to spend $700, we easily could have gotten upset and deemed yesterday as a bad day. These are the kinds of things that can cause problems in a marriage! At the end of the day, we were able to move into our new apartment. Instead of stressing (and possibly fussing) over money, we spent quality time together putting things away and even had time for some romance before passing out for the night.

When less than positive things happen, you don’t have to fall into an emotional funk. Focus on what’s going right with your day and make the most of every moment. Life is too short to spend it in a bad mood. Be positive, stay happy as much as you can and drop any emotional baggage that can slow you down.

xoxo, Elle

Summer Combo #1


1As promised, I’m now starting to use my summer capsule wardrobe everyday until the end of August. This is the first combination that I came up with. To add some flare, I wore this scarf, though I think I should have added a belt to the pants. Overall, I’m pretty happy with it. I think it could work in both casual and professional settings. I wore this to work today. What do you think? — ElleDSC_7066

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Summer Capsule Wardrobe


topsOk, as promised, I have photographed and sorted out 50 or fewer items to wear this summer. The theme behind my selections was bright feminine colors, texture and patterns. The goal is to stray away from too many dark or neutral colors. I still need a pair of wedges and nice black dress shoes, but I will add those later. I plan to stick to this wardrobe from June 15th until the end of August. The only exception will be when I am working out, lounging around the house or doing something that requires getting dirty. I’ve got a few items in my closet to wear for those occasions but I am forbidding myself (lol) from wearing anything outside of my capsule wardrobe to work, church, dates, or photo gigs.  If you too have been guilty of wearing sweats to the grocery store, bad ensemble combinations to work or dingy colored everything, I challenge you to create your own summer wardrobe. Take a look at the rest of my threads below! Your encouragement is greatly appreciated! Elle bottoms dresses

Whatever’s Clever Date


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The week had been a busy one, full of long days of working and helping out at church. There’s two things you can do after a week like that; sleep or do something fun. My husband Brandon and I haven’t gone out in a little while so we decided to go on a whatever’s clever date. We call it that because you spend the day trying new things or going somewhere you haven’t been before as long as it looks fun or interesting.  We’ve been here for a year and are finally able to go out and explore what’s around us. This date was a G-baby date, meaning I got to decide where we were going and what we did for the day. Continue reading “Whatever’s Clever Date”

Capsule Wardrobe Plans


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In order to improve my fashion sense, I’ve decided to get rid of all of the items in my wardrobe that make me look under 21 (although sometimes, this can’t be helped, I’ve got a real baby face). I tossed out so many things, some that I really love, but in the long run they don’t add to my ideal appearance. What look am I going for? I want to look stylish, professional, and of legal age, lol. I’m often mistaken for a teenager but I’m turning 27 this year. With my career goals, I need to be taken seriously by potential clients and employers. With that in mind, I’m creating capsule wardrobes with summer.

I want each capsule to contain 50 items total; shoes, tops, bottoms and dresses. Now that doesn’t include accessories, camisoles, or lounge wear for around the house and working out. It’s going to be challenging. I’ve got to put more thought into my look ahead of time and really get creative with the combination of items to wear. In order to help myself do this, I photographed all of my wardrobe items in order to plan my looks in advance and avoid too many repeats. I will post them on here for your input as well as images of me in them. I have to stick with each capsule for three months so once they are set, no adding! Right now, I’m at 48 items. I just need to add a pair of black dress shoes and wedges to make my wardrobe complete! Then the cataloging can begin!

DIT: Love Lottery


Do it together 🙂 Shout out to all the couples in love out there! If you enjoy going on spontaneous dates, try doing the love lotto. List 10 locations and 10 dollar amounts on slips of paper. These are your lotto tickets! Make sure the location and cash tickets are easy to identify. We used two types of patterned paper for ours. Fold them up and place them in a bowl or container.
Continue reading “DIT: Love Lottery”

May Update


Last time I wrote, I talked about my first collaborative photo shoot fail. Well, since then I have bounced back and been coordinating a second attempt shoot. It’s happening this Saturday! I’m working with plus size models, and two accessory designers. I must admit, I’m still a bit nervous. Last time I was cancelled on at the last minute but the people I’m coordinating with are very good about updating me. The best part is that my husband is going to be assisting me on the shoot.

I’ve been revising my company brand and some great things are happening as a result. We are taking the next 12 months to totally redefine the company and set things in motion for a reboot! Yes, it’s going to be a lot of work. Yes, there will be some times when things don’t go to plan. Yes, we are still going through with it! We are not going to let this dream go to waste, we are not giving up.

I just finished creating a big topic list for my YouTube channel. With better organization and planning, I’m going to start posting videos on the regular basis. How regular? Well, I want to start by posting twice a month and build from there. I’ve learned from experience that it’s best to start some things simply and then add on as time passes.

Meanwhile, I have been sticking with my 365 Artistic Days and 52 Weeks  photography projects for 2014. I missed two days so far but this has been a great ride so far! I’ve learned something new each time I set my camera up. It’s been a real challenge because I don’t want all of my images to look the same. It’s also been theraputic, since every image comes with a written entry about my day or thoughts. It’s like a photo diary. You guys should try it, if not for a year, try it for a month, a week, three days. You may find that you like it!

Don’t give up!
Elle