Tuesday, June 2, 2009

A New 'Do

Before Rosie came home, I was a little nervous about learning to do her hair. There's loads of information online about caring for African American hair, and some of it seems pretty complicated. Thankfully, it doesn't seem to be that hard. I'm still playing with products and learning, but as her hair grows, there do seem to be plenty of nice-looking options that aren't too difficult. Our project for this week was learning to do finger coils. Here are the results:

I was pleased with the outcome but wondered if it would pass muster if inspected by an African American mother. The answer came today when we were out shopping. I was approached by a beautiful lady who asked me, "Where did you get her hair done? I want to take my granddaughter there." When I replied that I had done it, she said, "Girlfriend, you have a gift." It felt great to have someone who knows all about caring for African hair say that I was doing a good job and that her hair was gorgeous. We spent some time talking about how I did it and what products I was using.

For my fellow adoptive moms, here's how you do finger coils:

1. Start with clean, well-conditioned very wet hair. Add your favorite styling product. Personally, we are using Curly Q hair products. My favorite conditioner and styling cream is called Curly Q Custard. If I want it super shiny, I add a small amount of Radiant Ringlets (also a Curly Q product).

2. Use a wide-toothed comb to very gently work through the hair to remove any tangles. Work slowly from the tips up to the root to avoid snags and breakage.

3. With a rat-tailed comb, seperate a small portion of hair (less than 1x1). Then, starting as close to the root as possible, twist the hair between your fingers gradually working your way down to the tip of the twist. Twist as tight as it will go with out pulling the hair and then release. Move on to the next section.

I have seen some pictures of this done with the hair very evenly divided into square 1x1 sections. Personally, I just divided small sections that wanted to go together which gives it a slightly more natural look.

Rosie's hair isn't super kinky, so this 'do does need to be refreshed the next morning. To refresh, simply spray the hair with a leave-in condition (try mixing a couple of tablespoons of Curly Q Custard with water in a spray bottle) and then re-twist any sections that have gone frizzy or very loose. For Rosie, the second day of this hair style is actually better than the first, as the coils are a little bit longer.

This hair style takes me about 45 minutes the first day and about 15-20 on subsequent days. Eventually I'm going to try it with some Loc Butter to see if that will improve the hold without making it greasy or waxy.


  1. Sarah, you are awesome! It looks beautiful :)

  2. Thanks for the hair tips. Where do you get the Curly Q products?