A Week without Washing My Hair—Grease Training

Ever since Lee from America talked about how she was grease-training her hair, I decided that was something I wanted to try.  I would like to improve the health of my scalp and I am also concerned about my short hair drying out.  The elements and frequent washing can wreak a havoc on both so grease-training seemed like a great way to combat that.

Day 1 of grease training
Day 1 with fresh, clean hair. I showered the previous night and this is the first day in the second week of grease-training.
Day 1 grease training
Side view of Day 1 hair. I just straightened the front pieces to tame the baby hairs. The rest of my wavy hair was left to do its natural thing.

I’m still new to grease-training but basically, it involves taking time to let your hair and scalp develop its natural oils.

Before we delve into this any further, there are some things I want to mention about my hair texture: I recently cut my hair to as short angled bob but, when it was longer, it was easily frizzy and often wavy.  Now, it is somewhere in between wavy and straight, but with a decent fullness.  I usually style it with a straightener to smooth out the hair that frames my face or the rogue pieces at the back of my head.  Otherwise, au natural is easiest for me.  I’ve also got some Latina blood in me so that lends itself to hair with the potential to get majorly oily.

Day 2 grease training
Side view of my hair on Day 2. It’s a little bit flatter but my hair feels smooth without being weighed down.
Day 3 grease training
Day 3 hair doesn’t feel as bad as it looks. I brushed my roots so that the natural oils on my scalp would spread onto my hair and that flattened it out a lot.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My hair was needlessly oily from over-washing.

For years my hair washing routine has been to shampoo every other day.  My second day hair will typically have a little more texture to it but the crown of my head is ready to be washed by the evening.  So, the first step in grease-training for me was to extend washing to every three days.  That felt uncomfortable to say the least.  After about two weeks of going through three day hair-washing cycles, I stepped it up.  I did four days with a hair rinse on day 2.  I’ll talk about rinsing a bit more but first, let me mention some tips I acquired tips from friends on Instagram who also don’t wash their hair frequently ( I won’t out you guys x D ) which I utilized during grease-training:

  • Dry shampoo was recommended and I know it can be a savior for many.  I used it a bit during the first two weeks but opted not to use it as I continued extending the days between washes.
  • Another tip I got was to wash my hair with only water and scrub it really well with my fingernails—I call this a rinse.
  • A final tip was to condition the ends of my hair during the rinsing time in the shower.

I tried all of these at some point but here’s the deal with the mid-point rinse: it helps get rid of the gunk that was building up on my scalp but that gunk just got shoved further down onto my hair.

Day 4 grease training
Day 4 hair feels thick. My mistake was rinsing it last night (evening of Day 3) because that seemed to only exacerbate the oiliness. If I didn’t know better, I’d think someone slathered texturing balm all over my hair.
Day 5 grease training
Day 5 and I’m feeling like I’ve done something wrong. It is REALLY oily and specks of sebum are present close to my hairline. Highly inclined to just wash my hair….

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Despite how gross I felt, I pushed through!

The days following the rinse, I just accepted the “thick” look my hair had.  I mean, hey, at least it couldn’t get any worse.

I did two weeks of four day cycles with a rinse on day 2 and shampooed on day 4.  Finally, day 4 came around and I was like, why not try for 5?  Then on day 5 I said, let’s try to get to day 6 and then 7!  I jumped from washing my hair every four days to a whole week without washing.

Let me tell ya.  That first complete week of no washing was pretty damn greasy.  Especially because I squeezed some workouts in daily.  This week was also when I also rinsed my hair for the last time—it wasn’t working out for me.  My hair was an uncomfortable mess but I was optimistic it would get better.  The second time I tackled a week without washing, my hair lasted well for the first few days (see pictures) but needed some attention by day four.

Day 6 grease training
Day 6 hair has surprisingly less grease going on. My roots still feel oily but the texture of my hair itself is soft and full. It’s also getting back my natural waves.
Day 7 grease training
Day 7 and I want to hide in a cave. My hair has taken a turn for the worst and it feels like a greaseball.  Note: I didn’t take a picture of Day 8 hair but it looked something like this so I hid it in a ponytail.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Okay, it was screaming for attention.

My mom was disgusted when I told her what I was doing and told me I should brush my hair.  She reminded me that in the old days, when people wouldn’t shower often, ladies would brush their hair daily.  A daily brushing helpse to distribute the oils and keep their hair fresh.  I honestly never brush my hair but I decided to give it a go.  My hair felt really oily but it was no longer all concentrated at the crown of my head.  It felt like the oils were distributed through my hair but not in the thick way that my hair felt after rinsing.  I kept brushing the days following that until I finally washed my hair on Day 8.  For the record, I wasn’t aiming for eight days, I just didn’t get the chance on the evening of Day 7.  My hair felt relieved, instantly clean, and featherweight.

As I write this, I am on my third cycle of a full week without washing (and second week without any rinsing whatsoever).  This week has definitely gone by much smoother and less oiler than last.  My hair actually felt great and looked fresh most of the week!  I attribute that to brushing it well on Day 3 and continuing to do so daily there on after.

My takeaway is:

Grease-training doesn’t happen overnight.  It took me a good month to build up to four days without shampooing my hair.  Now I can last a full 7 days and my scalp and hair feel decent.  More importantly, they don’t look like a greaseball.

Oily roots are the result of natural build up.  So, sure, you can spray dry shampoo on them but that doesn’t help the hair itself.  I opted to use the scalp’s oils as a conditioner for my hair when I gave it the daily brushing.

And the brushing—that makes the biggest difference.  I use a nylon bristle brush though a boar bristle brush would probably be most effective.  If that’s something you want to invest in.

It’s a bit too soon to tell if my scalp and hair are “healthier” but it feels good.  My hair is definitely not dry and I haven’t had to use styling products at all.  I like the way it naturally falls and it holds well in pontytails, buns, or braids.  As far as grease-training goes, it would be cool to be like Shailene Woodley and only shampoo once a month but I’m going to stick with my cycles of 7 days for now.

Understanding Hope: A Change in Perspective

I was just re-watching a Tea Talk video from Nikki Phillippi where she spoke with Instagram sensation, Tifforelie,  about how to find hope even in the midst of frequent pain or hardships.  You can watch the video here, if you’re interested.

Tiffany described her own hardships with careers, marriage, and finding her passion.  I have not been through the experiences that Tiffany has but I have been feeling frustrated with my own circumstances lately.  I understand how important outlook can be in inspiring personal change, betterment, or good fortune.  Thus, the discussion in the Tea Talk is a welcome source of inspiration.  I felt I could relate to a couple of points discussed in the video.  In fact, by the end of it, I was so grateful to hear that they, and others in the comments, share my same thoughts.  What particularly struck my interest was how Tiffany mentioned that she used to look at someone under hard times with judgmental eyes.  She would offer pity rather than optimism or hope to lift the person up.

I think instances of pain—especially pain that is unfamiliar to us—often receive that sort of reaction.  It feels almost instinctive to extend sympathy but that is not the kind of reaction I would want to receive.  Nor is it how I want to look at others.

The Tea Talk video gave me a lot of nice ideas to consider.  It all goes back to that saying, “treat others the way you want to be treated”.  Except…TIffany’s way of thinking advocates for extending hope and positive vibes by thinking positively of someone else.  Not just so that someone else will think kindly of you, but, to extend hope and positive vibes into the universe.  There is a deeper understanding of others, and ourselves for that matter, that we can tap into if we try.  I feel encouraged to reframe my perspective and think less critically about how others may be living their lives.  There is no reason to fill myself with negative thoughts of others or to waste time creating them.

A quote by Roald Dahl sums it up pretty well:

hope and positive vibes

 

 

Live Nomva Smoothie Packs Review

Recently, I got the opportunity to sample several of Live Nomva’s probiotic smoothie packs.  These little packs are pure health pureed into a drinkable form.  I find them perfect for on-the-go and also an easy way to squeeze (literally!) some healthy fruits and veggies into my day.

Live Nomva Smoothie Packs
Photo from Live Nomva’s website

I tried out the following smoothie pack flavors:

KALE YEAH

STRAWNANA

TROPICARROT

APPLESTACK

EVERBERRY

At the time I tried these out, they had not yet release their ISLANDTIME flavor.   Nonetheless, I really liked the flavors I did try!  They’re basically like applesauce in texture but better! The packs are made with awesome ingredients ranging from banana to kale to apples to quinoa.

To begin with, the TROPICARROT flavor was probably my favorite.  It is made of pineapple, carrot, mango, and pear.  Unfortunately, I do not have a picture of how I used that pack because I literally guzzled that baby down in a minute because it was that good!  For all of the other flavors (that I could exercise a bit more restraint with) I managed to take some pictures:

STRAWNANA Live Nomva Smoothie Pack Chia Pudding Parfait

The STRAWNANA flavor went excellently in a coconut chia pudding, granola, and strawberries parfait that I put together.

EVERBERRY Live Nomva Smoothie Pack Chia Pudding Parfait

I also used their EVERBERRY flavor as a layer in yet another chia pudding parfait.  I mixed in some Puffins cereal, strawberries, and kiwi this time.  Super yum!

Admittedly, you could make your own smoothie and use that in a parfait but it’s hard to make just a small amount of smoothie.  So, these packs are the perfect size!!  I love adding the Nomva smoothie packs to parfaits and other concoctions but they are so delicious on their own.  Plus, they are free from dairy, tree nuts, preservatives, or anything funky.  Pure organic fruit and vegetables + vegan friendly probiotics!

Let’s talk about the probiotics for a sec.  As a mostly plant-based eater, I do not consume yogurt regularly.  That used to be my main source of probiotics.  Sometimes I drink kombucha or eat sauerkraut but these Live Nomva smoothies are totally easy and safe to consume daily because they are made with wholesome, organic produce.  Now, I can get behind that.

Live Nomva KALE YEAH: Productivity Fuel

Twice, I tried the KALE YEAH flavor on an occasion when I felt like I needed a pick-me-up but my stomach was feeling a bit off.  All of the nutritious ingredients and probiotics definitely helped me feel reenergized!

Check out the Live Nomva website to see more about their smoothie pack flavors and find out where you can buy them locally.  I believe you can even get a $1 off coupon to try out their product when you visit their website.

Have you guys tried the Nomva smoothie packs?  If so, what did you think?  As always, I’d love to hear your opinions.

Xoxo,

Melanie

 

DISCLAIMER: The Live Nomva smoothie packs were sent to me as a giveaway prize package.  I am not under any obligation to promote or endorse this product.  I truly enjoyed them so I just want to share my review.

Romantic Valentine’s Day Films Worth Watching

I know Valentine’s Day was this week on Tuesday but so many people I know are celebrating this coming weekend.  A common way to spend the holiday is watching movies with your spouse, partner, or just some gal pals.  So, for that reason, I’ve got some great movie suggestions.

I mean, how many times can we watch Love Actually? It’s a great film, I admit, but each holiday-themed movie list you come across mentions Love Actually.  There’s also film named after the holiday, Valentine’s Day.  That is a fun movie (and Taylor Swift comes out!) but there are many other movies that I think deserve to be mentioned.

I’m not going rogue here and suggesting horror films, though go for it if that’s your thing.  Romantic movies are the obvious (and my favorite!) go-to choice for Valentine’s Day, of course.  I’m shaking it up from the conventional and suggesting some romantic films that you may have forgotten about.  Without further ado, here are some films you should check in celebration of Valentine’s Day or just whenever you need a good romantic movie to watch:

Rom-Coms

1. Music & Lyrics (2007)

Music and Lyrics
Image via IMDB

Hugh Grant is a successful, but past his prime, lyricist. When a hot, young artist wants him to write her next song, he has a difficult time coming up with a hit. That is, until he meets Drew Barrymore—her fresh phrases are exactly what they need to write a winning song.

2. He’s Just Not That Into You (2009)

He's Just Not That Into You
Image via IMDB

What are the rules for dating in the modern times?  Couples juggle the messy world of dating with a multitude of avenues for communication.  It introduces a fun perspective on the idea that sometimes we need to trust our gut instincts in a relationship and stop over-thinking it all.

3. 27 Dresses (2008)

27 Dresses
Image via IMDB

James Marsden is a newspaper writer doing an article on Katherine Heigl, the woman who has been to 27 weddings and has been a bridesmaid each time.  As they spend time together for the article, romantic interests blossom between the two.

4. That Awkward Moment (2014)

That Awkard Moment
Image via IMDB

While this movie is more of a bro-comedy than a romantic comedy, it has a creative look at a dating amongst 20-something adults.  A backdrop of NYC and Zac Efron make this a film worth seeing.

5. Funny Face (1957)

Funny Face
Image via IMDB

The oldest movie on this list is not only a musical but a classic.  Audrey Hepburn models fabulous clothes and gets to dance around with Fred Astaire.  Enough said.

Romantic Dramas

6. Notting Hill (1999)

Notting Hill
Image via IMDB

Julia Roberts is a movie star who enters the shop of a charming bookstore owner, played by High Grant.  Another encounter throws them together and a relationship blooms. Roberts has to decide if she wants to go back to her life in Hollywood or take a chance on the love she found in Notting Hill.

7. If I Stay (2014)

If I Stay
Image via IMDB

A car accident put a talented young girl in a coma and she gets to decide her fate.  She had the perfect life but after losing what is most important to her, she wonders if life is still worth sticking around for.

8. The Fault in Our Stars (2014)

The Fault in Our Stars
Image via IMDB

She has lung cancer and he had cancer but now dons a prosthetic leg and a revived confidence in life.  The two meet in a cancer support group and become fast friends.  They connect over a book they both read and decide to take a trip to Amsterdam meet the author.  Romance, adventure, and unexpected circumstances make this teen romance a fun and heart-wrenching film.

Indie Romance Films

9. Stuck In Love (2012)

Stuck in Love
Image via IMDB

A writer finds himself in a funk after his wife leaves him.  The effects have rolled over to his children and their relationships.  The film shows how love can be messy but that does not mean it isn’t worthwhile.

10. 500 Days of Summer (2009)

500 Days of Summer
Image via IMDB

The unique nature of this film has the course of a relationship between two people split up into 500 Days.  From the beginning we have an idea of where the film is going but the intrigue is in seeing how Tom and Summer’s relationship plays out.

11. The Art of Getting By (2011)

The Art of Getting By
Image via IMDB

A boy in his last year of high school has breezed through his life nonchalant and without purpose.  He meets a girl who makes him realize he wants to care about his life and maybe even her.

12. Love Rosie ( 2014)

Love, Rosie
Image via IMDB

A pair of best friends, Rosie and Alex, have a crush on each other during high school but they don’t tell one another.  Their relationship never is able to progress after Rosie gets pregnant and hides it from Alex before he goes away to school.  Over the course of time, the two run into each other and keep up with each other while living different lives.  Their connection is still as strong as it was back in high school though so they could still have a chance at love.

13.  One Day (2011)

One Day
Image via IMDB

A one night stand between two people ends up being a meaningful but tumultuous friendship over the years.

14. Comet (2014)

Comet
Image via IMDB

A couple meets at an LA event to watch a meteor shower and we watch as a tumultuous, bizarre, and romantic relationship unfolds between the two.

Do you have some favorite romance films that I didn’t mention?  Let me know what they are down in the comments.  I’m always looking for new movies to watch!

Highlights of Scrappy Little Nobody

If you’ve been following celebrity news, then you might be aware of Anna Kendrick’s memoir titled Scrappy Little Nobody.  Alternatively, if you do not follow celebrity news then, perhaps, you might be like me and randomly stumble upon the above mentioned book at a local library or book store.

Here’s how it happened: I caught a glimpse of Kendrick’s sly smile from the shelf of the New Arrivals section at my public library.  I read the first page.  It seemed tolerable.  So, I checked out the book thinking that, at the very least, it would be mildly entertaining and make me laugh (at her or with her, who’s to know?).  I really think I must have been desperate for new reading material because I am not a fan of Anna Kendrick.

To my pleasant surprise, Scrappy Little Nobody has got to be one of the most hilarious and enjoyable celebrity-written books I’ve ever read.  That’s not to say that I’ve read many but…well, let’s get to the point.

If you are curious about what you can get out of this book, there is: drama, anecdotes from her youth, awkward adventures in dating, a voyeuristic look into awards shows, musical theater, and what goes into filming a movie, and much, much more!

The unexpected part about this book was that, even though the life Anna Kendrick has lived so far is not the life of the average person, it is still relatable.  She describes her stories and thoughts in a way that make you feel like she is right there in the room with you, having a one-on-one chat.  I’m not saying she’s the nicest person to chat with—(she’s not)—but she does have a unique perspective and insight.

I do not want to give too much away because what’s the fun in reading the book if I do that?  I will, however, state my 5 favorite things about Scrappy Little Nobody:

  1. Anna Kendrick looks much younger than she actually is.

I’m in the same boat so I can empathize!  It is a curse that also brought her a multitude of advantages, particularly in the acting world.

  1. She tells things as she sees them. No holding back.

I have always gotten the impression that Kendrick was a girl with a bratty attitude.  After reading this book, I now know Kendrick is a woman with a bratty attitude.

  1. She knows what it means to rough it.

I’ve got to hand it to her.  Even when fame seemed to be picking up for her, she was still living in a crumb of an apartment with roommates.  It was eye-opening to learn that not everyone from Hollywood lives in a mansion and owns expensive shoes (okay, I’m exaggerating, but the latter does describe her—see book for complementary story).

  1. The woman knows she isn’t “nice” and is completely okay with that.

She does not expect you to like her.  Though, in her defense, there are a number of characteristics that she does value and hope to improve.

  1. The Scrappy Little Nobody has as many talents as she does hang-ups.

I say this in a kind, joking manner because I feel like Kendrick and I are almost, kinda, sorta friends.  I did read her book after all.  She has mega vocal chops and has tried her hand in a number of roles but she has also gone through some challenging times to get there.  So, maybe it’s the rocky climb to the top that has made Anna Kendrick a feisty little squirrel or maybe she is just naturally gifted with those traits.  We may never know….

I learned a lot about Anna Kendrick and have a newfound admiration for her.  That’s not to say I would go up to her if I ever spotted her in public.  Heck no!  I’ll just keep my admiration to myself and here on this blog.

Have you read Scrappy Little Nobody? If not, have I piqued your interest? Let me know in the comments.

Xoxo,

Melanie