Bizarre celebrity hair hacks

Laundry detergent? Ketchup? Coca cola? Believe it or not these are all products celebrities have used on their hair.

Huffington Post just posted this article about 5 celebrity hair hacks that are questionable to say the least.

Check out the article here

Would you ever try any of these?

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20 Hair Straightener Hacks

As you know from my recent Hair Growth article, I don’t use heated products on my hair and don’t recommend them if you are trying to grow your hair. However, if you aren’t on a mission of hair growth, you can have a lot of fun with heat.

Here are 20 Hair Straightener Hacks to inspire you to get creative with your hair:

http://www.coolblades.co.uk/hub/hair-styling-hacks/

Remember, when using any heated appliance on your hair, always protect it first.

5 Tips for Hair Growth

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Growing your hair out after a bad hair cut, or just because you’ve decided you want long hair, can be a long, slow, disheartening process. It is easy to be fooled by the products that promise ‘faster hair growth’ but unfortunately they just don’t work. Nothing can actually increase the speed at which your hair grows, but what you can do is stop the ends from breaking which makes your hair look longer in a shorter time.

Usually when we think our hair just isn’t growing, it actually is growing, but the ends are breaking off at the same place. To see real hair growth, we need to protect our ends and make our hair HEALTHIER. Once your hair is healthier, it can grow to much longer lengths without breaking.

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Hair does have a terminal length however. Hair growth supplements and products will try and say terminal length isn’t a thing, but it is. Our hair grows in cycles, and after its growth cycle ends, the hair shaft falls out of the scalp. Everyones terminal length is different but if your hair is stuck at shoulder length, it is unlikely that is has reached terminal length. Its much more likely that the hair is growing but keeps breaking off.

So here are 5 tips that helped me grow my hair when it had been stuck at shoulder length for years.

1. Ditch the heat!

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If you are serious about growing your hair, you may need to make this sacrifice. Don’t blow-dry, straighten or curl it. If you are a regular blow drier your hair may look worse before it gets better. For about 2 weeks after I stopped using heat my hair was a frizzy mess, it was so hard not to just give up and style it. But I pushed through the pain barrier and I was thankful for it. Heat protecting products just aren’t enough. Of course it’s possible to use heat safely and grow your hair, but if your hair is really damaged you might have to choose between heat or growth.

2. Say no to bleach

The same goes for lightening your hair. My hair started to give up when I started going blonde. I am naturally brunette and the components of the blonde hair dye was terrible for my hair. I had highlights so I only had to go back every 6 weeks, but if you are dying your hair blonde in block colour, you may be having to re-dye every 2 weeks, reinforcing the damage. I loved being blonde, but I love long hair even more so I chose growth and let the blonde grow out. Luckily the ombre look is in fashion, and people think my grown out roots are part of an expensive hairstyle. When my hair is all healthy again, I might go back to dye but I will stay away from hairdressers that use bleach. It made my hair so brittle I could literally snap off the ends. And yes, I do mean ‘literally’.

3. Oil it up!

I never really used any oils in my hair before I started trying to grow it, as I naturally have very oily hair. But the oil our hair makes doesn’t reach the ends. To keep the ends supple, it is important to use some kind of Argon Oil on the ends. I love Lee Stafford’s Nourishing Miracle Oil (£11.99)

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One bottle lasts ages, as you only need a tiny bit. I use 1 pump on my ends after I wash my hair. Once I started using this my hair really started getting its act together.

4. Treat yo’self

Once a week, do a proper hair conditioning treatment. Not just a 5 minute conditioner, a proper treatment that you apply to damp hair and leave on for up to 25 minutes. I used Philip Kingsley’s Elasticizer (£15-27.50)

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Yes, it’s hella expensive, but it made a big difference to my hair.

5. To trim or not to trim?

I personally stopped getting my hair trimmed when I grew my hair. I was getting it trimmed every six weeks and not only did it not grow, it got shorter and shorter. Trimming only helps hair look longer because it removes the damage that would have broken off, but to remove all the damage on my hair, I would have had to have shaved it. And that would probably have taken a bit longer to grow out than shoulder length damaged hair. So save your money and just let it grow, and try to prevent any more damage.

Bonus tip: BE PATIENT!

Your hair will start to grow when you stop thinking about it. For me, I just looked in the mirror one day and my hair had actually grown. I had been busy thinking about other things for weeks so it seemed like it just happened over night. Of course, that wasn’t the case. But if you obsess over it, it will seem to take forever. Follow these tips and then just put it out of your head. It is a long process and you might decide it is not worth the effort. But if you want to persevere, there really is no secret. Just time and care. Good luck!

The Best Beauty Moments of the AMAs 2014

I was not ready for the high levels of peng that were at last night’s AMAs.

First off, lets talk about Fergie coming out of nowhere and blowing us all away!

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That hair colour looks gorgeous on her and with all the long bobs around these days, it’s nice to see someone representing the long hair. Her soft natural makeup looks great with her loose waves. Surprising how such a natural look can be such a knockout, but it just works.

J Lo (as always) looked fantastic.

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I love the sleeked back wet look hair, because it’s very easy to do with greasy hair (which mine always is). You can just tell people it’s product. The eyeshadow under her lower lash line is smoked out to perfection and she’s rocking some killer Louboutin nails (when the underside of the nails are painted red)

Jordin Sparks

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BAM! Look at that glam, Studio 54 hair. Jordin looked great channeling 1970s Diana Ross.

The Jenner Faction

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Both of the Jenner sisters looked great. Kendall went for a sleek long bob while Kylie contrasted with her signature blue hair in a messy bun. Their makeup was by Rob Scheppy and for Kylie he used:

Makeup Forever Palette foundation set in Medium Beige with Translucent Natural Powder

Charlotte Tilbury FilmStar Highlight and Contour

Eyeko Lash Wardrobe Black Magic Mascara and Eyeko Brow Liner and Brow Gel

And the one we all want to know about; Mac Lip Liner in Burgandy with Elizabeth Arden 8 Hour Lip Balm over the top.

For Kendall he used all Estee Lauder products, because Kendall is now the face of Estee Lauder:

The foundation was Bare Creme

Ivory Powder on the eyes

Star Pink lipgloss

Lovers Blush on the cheeks.

They looked beautiful.

Jhene Aiko posted this picture of her getting ready:

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Of course she’s already a stunningly beautiful woman, so obviously she looks great, but I particularly like her grecian plait with the curls.

I’m normally not a fan of Rita Ora‘s makeup, personally I don’t like really dark eyebrows with blonde hair, but she did look nice last night:

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Her makeup looked a lot less severe than usual, because she opted for a more natural lip colour, and her spidery lashes actually go with her spider earrings! That wasn’t shade, spider lashes are having a moment.

And finally, Selena Gomez

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Selena looked so chic on the red carpet. Her smooth centre-parted chignon with the burgundy lipstick made her look mature and elegant.

So that’s the AMAs for another year. Now it’s just waiting for the Golden Globes and then, my favourite night because I’m a film nerd, The Oscars!

AmfAR Gala 2014 Beauty Roundup

The annual amfAR (The Foundation for AIDS Research) Gala is a black tie event thrown to raise money for the foundation and awareness of AIDS/HIV. Many celebrities attend and often it is a time for headline grabbing outfits, as this gets the foundation even more attention in the press. Celebrities are often criticised for their daring outfits but it is all to draw attention to the foundation and the good work it does.

This year the headlines were mainly about Rihanna and Miley Cyrus. This post with similarly be mainly about Rihanna as she looked, as always, fan-bloody-tastic.

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That makeup. Come on. Flawless!

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She has the perfect 80s orange lipstick to match her skin tone and her eye makeup, which is a burnt orange colour. All this makes her green eyes pop, and the chronic lashes for days add glamour.

The Hair

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I LOVE the sleek ponytail look. It’s something I do a lot to instantly solve a bad hair day and it’s really easy to recreate. They look great with a centre or a side parting. Rihanna is rocking hers with a side parting which adds a bit of retro glamour to her look.

Next up, Miley’s makeup was actually really cute:

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The feline flick eye liner complimented her pixie crop and works really well with her elfin features. I would like to see this look on her more often,.

Lea Michelle looked FIRE

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Lea Michelle has the best beauty team. She always steals the show for me on the red carpet. I love the brown smokey eye, it works so well with her chocolate brown eyes and caramel highlights. Her hair is big and beautiful, and even though I don’t think the bronzer is the right colour for her, it does match her highlights.

Alessandra Ambrosio

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Another example of a great sleek ponytail, this time with a centre parting. When you have an intricate dress and makeup, it is always best to go for simple and elegant hair. This ponytail works perfectly for that purpose.

Kelly Osbourne

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I like this makeup because it reminds me of one of my staple looks. I often like to go for an edgier bold liner with that barbie pink shade of lipstick. It works really well with Kelly’s unique style and it’s very youthful. I used to use the Lady Gaga Viva Glam lipstick but as it’s limited edition and mines running low, a look-a-like is Mac’s Saint Germain (£15.50).

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I can’t wait to see what these guys do for Halloween tonight!

Back to school/Off to uni

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A new school year, or a brand new university, is the perfect opportunity for a beauty makeover. My school was incredibly strict and we weren’t allowed to wear makeup, dye our hair, or even fake tan. We also had to keep our hair tied back. The rules relaxed a little in 6th form, but my first chance for a real beauty makeover was university. So whether you are just being released from the tight grip of school rules, or you go to a school where you are allowed to express yourself through your appearance, here are some great tips for becoming the new You 2.0. 

Tan

Not everyone looks best with a tan, there are some lucky people who really pull off the alabaster skin look. Unfortunately, I am not one of them. When my tan fades I just look like a jaundiced Lord Voldemort. So having a tan is a great confidence booster for me and a great way to start the school or uni year looking healthy and glowing, like you spent the summer on a yacht instead of watching hundreds of hours of netflix (which is what I actually did). 

If you are not a fan of actual tanning, why not fake it with something that comes pretty close to the real thing. 

My favourite fake tan is Xen-Tan 

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This Dark Lotion Absolute Luxe is currently £25.24 in the feelunique.com sale and it is the one I use. It’s the darkest they do, but they also have a medium and fair range to suit all skin types. What I love about this tan is it has olive undertones, instead of orange. Like, for real, it comes out green. You apply the guide colour onto freshly exfoliated skin and leave it overnight. Wash off in the morning and you are left with the perfect tan.

If this isn’t dark enough, you can top it up with something cheaper, like St Moritz (£4.49 on feelunique.com)

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Yes, it’s very cheap so it doesn’t have great lasting power, it’s more of a wash off tan. But it goes on super dark and I used to apply this just minutes before going out, on top of my original tan. Even though it is cheap it is not orange. It comes out as a mahogany brown foam, and it stays mahogany brown on your skin.

TIP: to make your tan last longer, moisturise. Do not moisturise before applying your tan or it won’t absorb as well, but moisturising is crucial for retaining a tan, real or fake. 

Hair

Heat stimulates hair growth, which is why your hair grows more over summer. The sun also can lighten your hair. I am naturally brunette, but I died my hair blonde for uni, and kept it up until about a year ago. I loved being blonde but it killed my hair. But a few highlights are always flattering. Dark hair doesn’t suit me, and when I first started highlighting my hair I got so many more compliments. So why not try some honey or caramel toned highlights?

For light hair:

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For dark hair:

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Nails

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I would never have been allowed any kind of nails when I was at school. Neither was I allowed when I was nursing. It was so liberating when I stopped nursing just to be able to have the longest, most ratchet nails possible. I love a stiletto nail, a squareletto nail or even a simple square. So if your school allows nails, or if you are headed to the freedom of uni, why not treat yourself to a manicure before you go. You could stick with your natural nails with a cute gel polish, alla Kardashian

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Or go more gangsta with it, like Lil Debbie

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or Kylie Jenner:

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Whatever you choose, you will feel pretty much ready for anything with your new look. Good luck in the new school/uni year!

Emmys 2014 Beauty Roundup

Last night, the 66th Primetime Emmy awards, saw the coming together of some of Televisions biggest stars (even if they did forget about Broad City). I could fill a whole separate blog talking about the shows, winners and nominees (I am TV’s biggest fan) but I’ll just stick to my favourite hair and makeup looks of the night. 

10. Edie Falco

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I thought Edie looked gorgeous last night. Her tan perfectly complimented her sunkissed highlights, and she kept it glam with some fluttery lashes and a nude lip. Very Flattering.

9. Mayim Bialik

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I love this grecian hair on Blossom – I mean Amy – I mean Mayim! 

8. Mindy Kaling

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Even though The Mindy Project didn’t receive any nominations, Mindy still won in terms of beauty. The sixties beehive hair (always shiny) plus blushing pink cheeks and smokey eyes equal one beautiful Mindy. 

7. Christine Baranski

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My personal favourite star of The Good Wife looked chic and classy last night. Her signature hair was as always coiffed to perfection and her makeup is glam but understated. 

6. Christina Hendricks

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I love this boho hair with the sheer blushed lips and coppery smokey eyes. Nothing could look better with her hair and skin tone. She looks beautiful. 

5. Julie Bowen

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Peng. I really like this edgy version of the classic bob. It looks fierce with her smokey eyes.

4. Keke Palmer

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Keke’s hair and makeup is ON. POINT. I love the double nose piercings and the sleek long ponytail, plus the smokey cat eye to top it all off. 

3. Kerry Washington

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This ombre grown out bob is everything! And who would have thought matte denim blue eyeshadow would go so well with an orange dress? I need to find out what eyeshadow her makeup artist used.

2. Sarah Hyland

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My beauty winner. The simple hair donut looks gorgeous with Haley’s blonde highlights. Plus we can see all of her beautiful face. Her eyebrows look full without looking fake, her lashes and golden brown eyeshadow on the upper outer corner of her lids accentuate her hazel eyes and her lipstick is the perfect ‘Kylie Jenner’ shade. This is my favourite look of the entire evening, bar one..

1. Bryan Cranston’s Moustache 

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Half a Top Knot

Continuing the theme of 90s hairstyles that have come back in fashion, I present the half top knot:

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All the cool kids are doing it. It’s pretty simple too:

1. Brush your hair and take the top section of hair that you want to tie and brush out all the knots

2. Tie it into a ponytail

3. Like with the space buns, twist the ponytail and wrap it round the base. 

4. Secure with another tie and pin any unruly bits. 

It looks great on these cool kids, however whenever I try it, it looks really unflattering. I know the point of the hairstyle isn’t to look ‘pretty’ but sometimes a girl wants to. So for a much more flattering look, albeit less 90s and more 60s, just do steps 1 and 2. 

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Less ‘trendy’ but way more flattering and pretty. 

Once you’ve followed steps 1 and 2, make sure the ponytail is secured high up with lots of volume and then just back comb the hell out of the rest of your hair for a classic pretty 60s look. Have a play around and see which style suits you best 🙂

 

My Hair Growth ‘Secrets’

DISCLAIMER: The following is my personal experience on how I managed to grow my hair after I had killed it with bleach so badly that it wouldn’t grow past my shoulders. When I say I no longer dye my hair, that doesn’t mean I don’t think anybody should dye their hair. I love hair dye but my hair just personally couldn’t hack it. All hair is different and has different tolerance levels to dye and heat. Unfortunately my hair had reached saturation point so this is my extreme hair detox that happened to work for me. 

I knew my hair could grow long because at school it was down to my waist. However when I started to dye it blonde that is when it started to go downhill for me. At first I only had natural highlights which didn’t seem to damage my hair. It was when I started getting it bleached that the damage began. Of course at the time it seemed to be in it’s best condition yet, as I was also getting it trimmed regularly. I went back every 6 weeks for more bleach and a trim. However after time the damage caught up with it and each time I got it trimmed it wouldn’t grow back. I ended up with shoulder length hair that had been waist length.

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Eventually I had to choose: length or colour? I loved being blonde but I also missed my long hair. I decided to take a break from dying and give it a chance to grow. However it still wouldn’t  grow. It was so damaged that my hair would just break whenever it reached a certain length. I stopped using any heat on it. I had previously blow dried it every day because it made the colour look better, but since I had decided to let the colour take a back seat I stopped blow drying, straightening and curling. I even wrapped it up when I went on sun beds. At first it was a frizzy mess and it took a lot of self control not to go back to blow drying, but I pushed through the frizz barrier and after 2 weeks it started to dry in loose waves. 

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This is argan oil, and this is what really saved my hair. I started applying this to the ends of my hair after every wash and that is when it really just seemed to grow back over night. The damage was repairing and growing out, allowing my hair to grow without breaking. Seeing some growth gave me hope, and I began to take an active interest in hair care. A key to healthy hair is doing one deep conditioning treatment a week. 

One of my favourites is the Philip Kingsley Elasticizer (£28) however a more affordable option that worked for me was the John Freida Full Repair deep conditioning treatment (£7). And of course stick to the ‘comb wet hair, brush dry hair’ rules. Unless you have a Tangle Teezer (£10) in which case you can use that all the time.

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This has got me up to where I am now. But one thing I do worry about is my hair reaching it’s terminal length. When I was at school it reached a certain length and never grew past it. This wasn’t due to breakage, this is because hair grows in cycles. Once my hair reaches my waist it stops and any more growth just falls out. To make sure my hair was still growing I took a photo of it last month and then another photo exactly 1 month later and..

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It’s still growing! I have never taken hair supplements, but I do try to eat a healthy diet. If you eat well enough you should provide your hair with all the vitamins it needs. And that’s all those fancy hair supplements are; vitamins. Two natural products that are also great for hair growth are Aloe Vera and Coconut oil, but as I explained in my hair porosity post, because my hair is low porosity they just dry my hair out which can cause breakage. 

So there are my ‘secrets’. I just avoided heat and dye and use a lot of argan oil. I haven’t had a trim in about 2 years so those who say you need to trim your hair in order for it to grow are liars. The hardest part was pushing through the frizz barrier when I stopped blow drying it but it only lasted two weeks and I just kept my hair tied up. Now that I know more about caring for it I am thinking about dying it again, what do you think to blue?

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Natural Hair Care: Hair Porosity

Aloe Vera is amazing for your hair. I helps stimulate growth, it treats the scalp, it conditions the hair making it soft and silky and controls frizz by smoothing the hair cuticle. So why then, when I used it, did it make my hair dry and brittle as straw? Apparently, it is because I have low porosity hair and I didn’t even know about it. 

Hair porosity is basically like how many gaps there are in your hair. This picture explains it better: 

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It effects how well moisture can penetrate the hair shaft. Very porous hair absorbs all the moisture not leaving anything behind whereas on low porosity hair it will just sit on the strand unable to get in. Essentially high porosity hair is not healthy hair. And low porosity hair already has all the health and goodness it needs. This is why I was so surprised to find out I had lo-po hair because I always thought my hair was incredibly porous. Probably because when I used to get it bleached every 6 weeks my hair dresser never used toner because of how porous my hair was. But my hair must have repaired itself and all the care I’ve been taking must have payed off because it seems now my hair is healthy and no longer porous. 

An easy was to tell how porous your hair is is by placing a single hair strand in a glass of water. If it sinks quickly it is porous. It has absorbed all that water quickly which weighs it down causing it to sink. Therefore if it takes a long time to sink or just floats at the top it is low porosity. Or you could run your fingers up a strand of your hair towards the scalp and if you feel a lot of bumps it is highly porous. If it feels smooth, it is not porous. 

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So with that all being said, what does this mean for my hair? And why does it not like Aloe Vera? Basically because aloe vera smooths cuticles and mine are already smooth, it’s redundant. Why this leaves my hair dry and brittle, I don’t know. There is also a school of thought about protein sensitivity in hair which is that some hair is already full of protein so rejects any more protein you apply to the hair which leaves it dull and dry. Some people vouch this is true for them, others claim protein sensitivity is a myth.

So how do you look after lo-po hair? 

Basically, if you have lo-po hair you are kind of blessed and don’t need to do much to it. However if it is really dry and you want your hair cuticles to open up to take in the moisture from a treatment you are using, you can always use SAFE heat. For example, heating the product (oil, conditioning treatment) before applying it. You can also sit under a hair dryer while your hair is safely protected under a shower cap which will help the moisture penetrate the hair shaft. However because I avoid ANY heat on my hair (I even wrap it up when I’m sunbathing) I will not be doing this. I am too chicken. Another way to get your hair to accept the moisture from the product is only to use a tiny amount of it. I have been doing Coconut Oil pre-poo treatments (pre-poo meaning before you wash your hair) and leaving the coconut oil in my hair overnight. It worked beautifully the first time, however the last time I did it my hair felt really dry when I was washing it out. This could be because I used too much and next time I should use only the smallest amount. I am going to keep trying to see if I can get the amount right, because coconut oil has SO many benefits for hair. 

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Please let me know any experiences you have had, good or bad, with hair porosity, aloe vera, coconut oil, anything! I would love to know about other hair experiences.