Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Review: Dark and Lovely Au Naturale Anti-Shrinkage Cleansing Conditioner A La Creme

Since becoming natural, Dark and Lovely's Au Naturale line was something I had wanted to try for awhile. But in the beginning, I could not find the line in a store near me. 

When I finally was able to get my hands on something, I was excited to try anything. Since I was back in Georgia for a visit and forgot to pack shampoo or conditioner, I thought a cleansing conditioner would be a good idea. 

Well, to be honest, I thought a co wash would be a good idea. But figured I would try something new especially since it was the first time I found the Au Naturale Anti-Shrinkage Cleansing Conditioner in stores.

The first time I used this shampoo I was not terribly impressed. However, I decided to give it a few more tries before I made a final judgement.

Now according to softsheen-carson.com:

Curls feeling womp, womp? Our Cleansining Conditioner a la Crème is just what your curls ordered: hydration elation! This silicone-free cowash cleanses without the squeaks and replenishes dry, dehydrated curls and coils with nourishing moisture. Made gentle and lightweight for frequent use.

Sounds pretty good, right?

As the replacement for your shampoo, conditioner, and detangler it sounds perfect. For those ingredient readers, it is also free of parabens, mineral oil, and sulfates. Anti-shrinkage is just the cherry on top of what sounds like a great product.

As I continued using the product, I felt like it was drying out my hair.  This is a problem I have had with other cleasning conditioners.  Usually the idea sounds better than the product.  

I used most of the bottle and came to the conclusion the only redeeming qualities I found with this product are that it has a pump dispenser and it did help with shrinkage a bit.  However, I still had some shrinkage so it wasn't a holy grail product for anti shrinkage.

I couldn't even finish the bottle to make this an empties post, so it is safe to say that I wouldn't recommend this product to anyone.

I am not completely discouraged from trying more products from the Au Naturale line, but I will admit that it isn't the start of a great relationship.  You only get one chance to make a first impression.  Good thing I believe in second chances.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

From Self Destructive to Self Reflection......27 Years of Learning

As I sit here on the eve of my 27th year, I feel an almost pain deep inside. A growing pain that often I tried to deny. 

Who am I and where am I? At this point I feel I should know. Maybe I do and I have just refused to acknowledge the answer.

Why am I posting this? Why does this introduction sound like some depressing sob story? Tomorrow, I will be 27. Tomorrow begins a whole new year of my life. Tomorrow, I want to FINALLY apply the last 26 years of my life to an actual chapter of growth.

This past year, I spent a lot of time learning about my self. A friend of mine pointed out that outside of college, my period of self exploration was cut short due to me getting married young and having a kid not long after that. She was right.

The last 3 years have been interesting to say the least. Full of drama, tears, triumphs, failures and more. A time of just a crazy roller coaster ride. But this last year, with my husband gone for most of it, I had no choice but to face some of my worst thoughts alone. Unfortunately, what I learned about myself wasn't always applied to my growth.

When I got married, it was a rush. I was in a transition between settling back in Atlanta and trying to maintain my long distance relationship. When I graduated, I was somewhat lost when it came to my future. While I never pressured my husband to get married, I did want him to make a decison about a timeline to help me make a decision about our life and mine. I could explain the difference but I feel that would be a waste of effort.

I saw marriage as a chance for a change, a push even, to help me find myself.  In retrospect, that was a horrible way of thinking. I live with no regrets getting married, because I love my husband. But as I become one year closer to 30, I have moments of wondering what if we had waited a year or what if I had done certain things differently in the first year of our marriage.

Too often, I play the "what if" game with myself. It is a terrible game to play, one I suggest against. But as I get on Facebook and even YouTube, I see the success of those around me and I think what am I doing with my life.  I can't even maintain my blog or care enough to clean my house like it should be cleaned. I play the "what if" game without being driven enough to do something to change it.

So why am I sharing this with you? Because I need a final nail in the coffin for the past. To stop making excuses for why I don't do certain things. To look back at this post and realize I can change and that my life is far better than a pity myself moment.

They say you shouldn't regret anything in life because at one point that is what you wanted. I don't always agree with that saying because there are plenty of things I regret and I didn't exactly want them at the time. But I don't regret the life I have chosen to share with a man I love nor the life I have given to a little boy who makes me smile and crazy.
As I enter into my 27th year, I won't dwell on the opportunities I missed, the fights that were counterproductive, and the moments I can't change. 27 will be my year. I said 26 would be a year of learning and it was, but this year will be the year I fully apply my knowledge.

27 will be a year to remember.....

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