Yo Jo-Jo And A Bottle of Oil: All About Jojoba Oil.

Jojoba oil must be bottled from sebum of our Heavenly Father.  Yep, it is that darn good.  This little miracle in a bottle has a lot of great uses for both hair and body.

Desert Essence

100% Pure Jojoba Oil

4 oz, $6.90

Available at Whole Foods, Vitamin Shoppe, Vitacost

First, please never pronounce it with the hard “J” sound Jo-Jo-Ba or you will look like an idiot.  It is pronounced with an “H” sound like other Spanish terms Ho-Ho-Ba.  Second, it is not an oil at all, it’s actually a wax that is liquid at room temperature.  Thirdly, while I may have mislead you to believe that it is the sebum of Jesus Christ, it is actually cultivated from the seeds of the jojoba bush.  Lastly, it has long stable shelf life similar to that of other popular oils like coconut and castor seed.

So why is jojoba oil so awesome? Well let’s just say God must of spent a little more time with this oil.  Jojoba oil is touted to be the oil that most closely matches the natural sebum of our skin and I would have to agree.  Jojoba oil is my little secret for my favorite beauty treatments.  I dab a few drops on a cotton ball and apply to my face after cleansing and toning.  It is also awesome for softening the cuticles of your nail beds.

5 Great Ways to Use Jojoba Oil:

  1. In a facial treatment > Tropical Island Facial Mask
  2. Infused scalp oil > DIY Rosemary + Sage Scalp Oil
  3. Conditioning Spritz > 1,2,3 Conditioning Spritz
  4. Conditioning Rinse > Rosewater + Jojoba Rinse 
  5. Sugar Scrub > Brown Sugar Scalp Scrub

An important thing to note is that jojoba oil is pretty pricey per ounce.  I use it full strength on my face however I normally cut it with a cheaper oil like safflower, grapeseed or almond oil to stretch it in other recipes.  You should be able to find jojoba oil in your local health food store.  If you want to purchase it online for less use my referral code from Vitacost.com and get $10 off your order.


Fighting Frizz: Mineral vs. Coconut Oil

As we enter the humid months we begin to look for anti-humectants or products that can help keep the moisture out.  Excess moisture in the hair results in turning your awesome twist out into big frizzy fro.  Many naturals use oil to help seal their hair, keep the existing moisture in and keeping additional moisture out.  But is it better to use a natural oil like coconut oil or a man made product like mineral oil? 

Pros and Cons of Coconut Oil:
  • Coconut oil is a natural product that can be used on hair, skin and even in cooking.
  • Coconut oil adds shine and seals in moisture.
  • Coconut oil can penetrate the hair shaft to soften hair and aid in strengthening hair from the inside.
Pros and Cons of Mineral Oil:
  • Mineral oil adds high shine and seals in moisture.
  • Mineral oil is long lasting, and remains on the hair until removed through cleansing.
  • Mineral oil coasts the shaft and forms a barrier on top of the hair
Test it Yourself:  
  • Apply coconut oil to the back of your left hand.
  • Apply mineral oil to the back of your right hand.
  • Wait 1 hour for the products to absorb undisturbed.
  • Run your hands under water for 1 minute.
  • Observe the way the product reacts.  Does the water bead, and roll off your hand? Is the area to which the product was applied the same? Has the product absorbed into your skin?
  • Wait another hour and repeat with the water test and observations.
  • Wash your hands with a mild soap.
  • Observe the way the product reacts.  Is the product fully removed from your skin? Did the product wash clean?
So which is better? To determine which is better you need to decide which works best for your regimen.  If you refresh your hair daily I would say choose coconut oil.  If you prefer a longer lasting style that doesn’t require refreshing I would say to choose mineral oil.  If you prefer low poo or no sulfate shampoo, choose coconut oil.  If you don’t mind sulfate shampoo then choose mineral oil.  So the choice is yours, for more information on this topic check out this article from naturallcurly.com.

DIY Rosemary & Sage Scalp Oil

Sophia asks, “Do you have any scalp oil recipes using rosemary and sage oil?”

CHALL-ANGE *in my Sandman Simms voice*

I managed to alter a couple recipes to suit this very purpose, let me know what you think.  Rosemary and sage are great herbs to treat dryness, itching or dandruff.  For overall scalp health try using lavender or chamomile.  

Rosemary & Sage Essential Scalp Oil

This recipe is a modification of my favorite scalp oil.

  • 4 ounces almond oil
  • 2 ounces safflower oil
  • 2 ounces jojoba oil
  • 10 drops rosemary essential oil
  • 10 drops sage essential oil
Mix all ingredients together in a clean, sterile bottle (I like to use a color applicator bottle with narrow tip).  Store in a cool dark, place away from direct sunlight.  To use apply a few drops on scalp and gently massage into scalp with fingertips.

Rosemary & Sage Easy Herbal Infusion

This recipe uses infusion of fresh or dried herbs, it takes a little longer but is cheaper to make yourself.  You can pick up these herbs from your local grocery store.

  • 6 springs rosemary
  • 6 sprigs sage
  • 4 ounces almond oil
  • 2 ounces safflower oil
  • 2 ounces jojoba oil

Note: 1 sprig =  5-7 leaves.  Gently bruise the herbs by crushing in your hands then add to jar.  Pour oil into small pot or saucepan.  Lightly heat oil over low heat until warm (do not boil) then pour over herbs.  Oil should completely cover herbs so cut or break them if necessary.  Allow oil to cool, then seal container and store in cool dark place for about a week.  Strain mixture to remove herbs and store in clean sterile bottle.  You can make an easy chamomile infused oil by pouring over chamomile tea bags.

Tropical Traditions Organic Hair Oil Giveaway *CLOSED*

I told you how I liked the Tropical Traditions Organic Hair Oil, now it’s your turn to check it out for yourself.  This oil is “made from the finest organic oils available” and comes scented in lavender, rosemary or unscented.  The nice folks at Tropical Traditions have agreed to sponsor a giveaway for 1 lucky winner!

To be eligible to win you must do the following:

Bonus entry:

Contest is open to residents in the US and Canada. Contest begins Wed 11/30/2011 and ends Saturday 12/10/2011.  Maximum number of contest entries is 2 (two), additional comments or tweets will not count for multiple entries.  Winner will be notified via email used to leave comment and/or twitter or facebook.  Winner will have 48 hours to claim their prize else it will be forfeit and a new winner selected. 

For more info on the benefits of coconut oil, sales and coupons subscribe to TT newsletter: http://www.tropicaltraditions.com/subscribe_for_special_sales.cfm.

Disclaimer: TropicalTraditions provided me with a free sample of this product to review, and I was under no obligation to review it if I so chose.  Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review or sponsor a product giveaway in return for the free product.


Product Review: Tropical Traditions Organic Coconut Hair Oil

For the past month I have been experimenting with Tropical Traditions Organic Hair Oil.  I love coconut oil for cooking and in body products but I am not the biggest fan in using it on my hair.  This was going to be a real challenge.

Tropical Traditions

Organic Hair Oils

8 oz for $18.99 unscented / $19.50 lavender or rosemary

I was given the opportunity to review these products and honestly I am not quite sure why I accepted.  My hair is medium porosity and I find coconut oil alone to be a bit too heavy for my hair.  I have used it in pre-poos and DIY oil blends but it honestly is not one of my favorite oils.  I fully intended on experimenting mostly on my son, JK, who’s hair is high porosity and is very dry in the morning despite my best moisturizing efforts I find acceptable for the regimen of a 6-year-old boy.

When I first received the product it was already chilly here in KY so I fully expected to have to heat up the oil in order to liquefy it (coconut oil solidifies at around 70 degrees).  However I was surprised to discover it was perfectly liquid due to its specific blend of ingredients the oil is able to stay liquid even at temps as low as 40 degrees (I put it outside on the balcony on a cold night just to see).

ing: organic jojoba, organic gold label standard virgin coconut oil, organic macadamia nut oil, organic rosehip oil, organica shea butter, organic lavender essential oil, and organic carrot seed oil.

I won’t get into the the deets about coconut oil as the folks a TT did a great job of that on their website FAQ.  I will cover the 3 different ways they described to use the hair oil.

1.  Leave-in conditioner.  As I stated before my son JK has high porosity dry hair.  Every night as part of bath time we wet his hair and after getting out of the bath I massaged about a dime-sized amount throughout his hair.  The oil worked as a moisture sealant to keep the moisture in the hair.  The oil absorbed well into his hair without leaving oil spots on the pillowcase when applied 30 minutes before bedtime and in the morning his hair was not as dry or matted.  Compared to using other products raw shea butter left his bedding greasy and lighter oils like safflower left his hair too dry.  Using this oil at night is now a permanent part of his regimen.

2.  Hot-oil treatment.  I normally pre-poo my hair with an oil/humectant/conditioner mixture but I decided to use this hair oil alone to see how it performed.  I warmed the hair oil by placing the bottle in cup of hot water then applied generous amount to dry, tangled hair twisting into sections.  I covered my hair with a plastic cap and allowed to sit for about 20-30 minutes before washing, conditioning, detangling and styling.  The hot-oil pre-poo did help with detangling and softening the hair but not as well as my regular pre-poo mix.

3.Shine Serum.  I tried the product on a braid-out by smoothing over the braids as I unraveled them.  While it did give some sheen it was not a shiny as traditional silicone-based shine serum.  I used also on JK’s fro and had a similar result.  The product did add a bit of sheen and was not greasy but I would not market it as a shine serum.

I was really impressed by this oil blend.  I think the jojoba oil base has a lot to do with my reason for liking it as I use it in my hair and body regimen.  I will say that the mix of jojoba and coconut oil did make a difference in JK’s dry hair and allowed it to stay soft without being greasy.  While it’s on the pricey side, the product is an excellent blend of high quality oils which would be pricey to purchase individually.  I will definitely continue using this as part of JK’s nightly regimen but would not repurchase solely to use for my six-year-old unless it was on sale.  After using the oil for a month we have only used about 1/4 of the bottle which means we have at least 3 more months worth of regular uses.  That calculates out to about $5 per month which I find to be acceptable.  The product also works as a nice body oil after the bath or shower or as a face pack for DIY facial treatment so the multi-uses adds to the appeal.  All in all if you are looking for quality, organic oil blend I would recommend this product.

To purchase your own bottle check out this link http://tinyurl.com/bujz9qf

Disclaimer: TropicalTraditions provided me with a free sample of this product to review, and I was under no obligation to review it if I so chose.  Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review or sponsor a product giveaway in return for the free product.

Product Review: Vatika Oil


Vatika Oil

$3 for 5 oz.

Available at Indian Grocery (Patel Brothers) or online 

On a recent trip to the Indian Grocery Patel Brothers to check out some ayurvedic treatments I picked up some Vatika oil.  Vatika oil is a coconut oil based hair oil that is mixed with henna, amla, brahmi and neem extracts which are said to help strengthen the hair, stimulate growth, and resolve dryness among other things.  These are common ‘vedic ingredients mixed into a daily oil for ease of application.  

ing:  Coconut oil, Neem, Brahmi, Fruit extracts of Amla, Bahera and Harar, Kapur kachri, Henna, Milk, Rosemary oil, Lemon oil, TBHQ (t-Butyl Hydroquinone), fragrance.

First thing you will notice about Vatika oil is the smell.  It doesn’t exactly stink, but it does not smell pleasant either. While it includes rosemary, lemon, tbhq and fragrance they cannot match the distinct stench, err scent of neem oil.  Which was not something I liked nor I could get used to.  I used it once to seal my hair hair and washed it later that day.

Being that the product is coconut oil based it also has the same properties in that it will be a solid at temps below 70 degrees and will be liquid at warmer temps.  The oil has a plastic stopper which keeps it from spilling out (nice) but if it is cold you will not be able to squeeze it out so keep that in mind.

While I did not like it for my hair I will say that it worked great as a natural bug spray. WHAT?!?! Yes, neem plant is a natural insect repellent so I applied some oil to my arms and legs before going out on an evening run and did not get bit once.  I also used some on my beagle for the same purpose and it worked fantastically.  However I did have to shower when I came in because that smell is…not good.

Have you used Vatika oil?  How do you incorporate it in your regimen? What did you think about the smell? 

DCN Favorite Things Giveaway #1: Pura Body Naturals *CLOSED*

DCN recently observed our 1 YEAR ANNIVERSARY and I thought what better way to celebrate then to share with you my favorite natural hair products!

Our 1st Giveaway is sponsored by Pura Body Naturals, you can read my review of this product line here, but know that this product line contains exotic butters and oils from the Amazon including Cupuacu, Babassu, Sapote and Murumuru.

I am in LOVE with the Cupuacu Hair Butter (pronounced coo-poo-ah-sue) it is just the bees-knees.  It is creamy butter that goes on smooth and non-greasy.  I smooth it over my braids or twists, on my sons short hair or my daughters loose curls to seal in moisture and to add some shine. It is no like shea butter (I am not a shea butter fan it is too heavy, greasy and waxy for my liking) as it goes on light and readily absorbs into the hair and skin.  I also used the butter alone to retwist my boy Khalil’s locs, pictured below. I have also purchased raw oils and mineral make-up from this company and they are all awesome!

To enter the giveaway you must:

1. Subscribe to my blog > enter your email address in the “Subscribe Me” box located in the footer menu below. ***please leave your username in the comment so i can verify that you have subscribed example myusername@yahoo.com.***

2. Go to Pura Body Naturals site http://www.purabodynaturals.com and check out their products.

3. Leave a comment below stating which Pura Body Naturals hair product you would like to win.

**Bonus Entry**

You can also earn bonus entries through fb and twitter:

#1 Tweet the message below then leave a comment stating I tweeted the bonus entry with your twitter handle: DCN Favorite Things Giveaway #1 @HereIsMySpout @PuraBodyNatural  #NaturalHair #Locs http://wp.me/p1owB1-cP

#2 Like Pura Body Naturals and Derby City Naturals on FB then post the following message as your status. Then leave a comment stating i posted the message on FB with your fb user name: I wanna win the DCN Favorite Things Giveaway #1 @Derby City Naturals @Pura Body Naturals http://wp.me/p1owB1-cP  ***note you must use the @ symbol to tag both companies on fb***

The contest is open from Thursday 8/4/2011 through Wednesday 8/10/2011.  Winner will be selected via random.org random number generator.  Winner will be notified via email address used to subscribe to the blog and will be announced via blog, fb and twitter. Winner will have 48 hours to claim their prize.


DCN 1 Year Anniversary Favorite Things Giveaway

DCN recently observed our 1 YEAR ANNIVERSARY and I thought what better way to celebrate then to share with you my favorite natural hair products!  We will have giveaways via twitter, facebook page and the blog so make sure you are following me on each of these so that you are eligible to win. 

Okay well I’m not Oprah fabulous with pull from Volkswagen, but I have talked to natural hair manufacturers and they have all agreed to generously donate their products to share with you :)  We will have giveaways sponsored by:

These are all products that I actually use in my hair regimen and love so I hope you will love them too.  Giveaways will run all month long so make sure you check the fb wall, read the tweets and sub the blog so you do not miss anything!