10 Tips for Using Heat Safely on Natural Hair

Sunday, May 28, 2017

10 Tips for using heat safely on natural hair | FroBunni

For the last few months, I've been using heat to dry my hair. I prefer it since my hair takes at least two days to dry, and I hate walking around with wet hair. I've been getting a lot of questions about this and if it's safe for natural hair. The simple answer is yes, the more complex answer is why I'm writing this blog post.

Heat is quite a fickle topic in the natural hair community. Some women demonize it, and others swear by it. Personally, I don't judge either way, but using heat will depend on you. I cannot flat iron my hair, not even a little bit. The direct and high heat is too much for my hair, and I've detailed this before. So instead of using a flat iron, I rely on a blow dryer and use low heat. This is how I can use heat consistently and keep my hair healthy.

Most of my tips will be based on my personal experience with heat, but you will probably have to try a few things to find what's right for you, but use extreme caution. All it takes is one time to get irreparable heat damage, and it doesn't even have to be high heat either.
  1. Shampoo Your Hair: If you plan to use heat regularly, you will want to wash with a good shampoo. Dirty hair will dry or straighten unevenly, making you more prone to heat damage.
  2. And Use a Moisturizing Shampoo Too: Use a moisturizing shampoo if you're going to use heat more often. Even though I'm using low heat, the process of quickly drying my hair can still be damaging, so my hair still needs as much moisture as possible.
  3. Condition and Deep Condition: Again, the simple process of quickly drying hair, even if there's no heat present, can still be drying and damaging, so you will want to find every place possible to add extra moisture to hair. 
  4. Deep Condition With Heat Every Wash Day: One of the biggest game changers in my regimen has been deep conditioning with heat. I bought the Hot Heat Thermal Microwavable Deep Conditioning Cap almost a year ago, and it's awesome. Deep conditioners penetrate the hair more effectively, nourishing and strengthening hair from the inside out. It helps prevent breakage and damage, and makes hair softer and shiner. If you are going to use heat regularly, this step will help you keep your hair healthy.
  5. Do Protein Treatments More Often: I use to do protein treatments every month, and now I do them every three weeks to keep my hair strong. If you use high heat, you may want to use heat every other week, or even use it weekly and follow up with a moisturizing deep conditioner. This will, of course, make your wash days significantly longer, but the benefit will pay off in the long run.
  6. Use a Heat Protectant: Use a heat protectant and use a real one. I even created an infographic to drive this home. And, let's get one thing clear, oil is not a heat protectant. I don't care if you have an anecdotal story about how you can use grapeseed oil and your hair doesn't burn. That's great, but it's still not a heat protectant. The reason this extremely incorrect belief came about is because someone misinterpreted the term "heat point," which is the temperature that an oil must reach to burn. This heat point is completely irrelevant if, for example, it's cooking chicken. A chicken will cook in 300 degree oil regardless of if it's olive oil, peanut oil, or canola oil, and it can burn just the same. So get a heat protectant!
  7. Blow-Dry Hair with a Hood Dryer: If you can, use a hooded dryer. The indirect heat is safer for hair, helping to prevent heat damage. 
  8. Be Okay with Texture: When I decided not to flat iron my hair again, I knew that meant my hair would never be bone straight. I can get my hair to 90% of it's full length using other stretching methods, and I'm okay with this. For those that also have highly textured hair, you may not get your hair straight without high heat and a lot of manipulation, which could mean a lot of damage.
  9. Limit Heat to Once a Week (At Least): I use heat on wash day (or the day after if I'm too lazy to dry it the same day). You risk damage when you use it every day or even every other day. Keeping hair stretched (like doing a perm rod set) is a good way to keep hair straight and limit heat. 
  10. Give Your Hair a Break: Give yourself a break every so often. Whether that's once every month, once every two months, or even once every three months. Let the hair do its own thing every once in awhile, even if it means your hair will be wet for a few days.
7 Heat Protectants for Natural Hair | FroBunni

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Bruschetta Pasta Salad

Brushetta Pasta Salad | FroBunni

One of the best things to come out of this mostly vegetarian lifestyle (and being a super picky eater) is that I have to be creative when it comes to my meals. I love bruschetta, it's one of my favorite recipes, but it's not the mostly filling (unless I want to fill up on bread). So, how do I enjoy bruschetta, but make it a healthy meal? Why make a pasta salad of course!

This recipe is super quick and simple. It only took me 20 minutes to make. While the pasta cooked, I chopped up some tomatoes, basil, and garlic, mixed in a little oil and salt, and let sit. When the pasta was done and drained, I mixed everything together. It's perfect for dinner, and since it has no mayo or yogurt, you can take it to work without having to worry about refrigeration.

Bruschetta Pasta Salad

Ingredients

  • 1 box of Rotini pasta
  • 1/2 lb of grape tomatoes
  • 20 basil leaves
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
Takes 20, serves 6.

Instructions

  1. Boil pasta according to directions on box.
  2. Cut tomatoes in half, and chop basil and garlic.
  3. Mix tomato mixture, adding olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste.
  4. When pasta is cooked, drain, and add to bruschetta. 
  5. Mix all the ingredients together. Enjoy! 

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I'm Doing the IIFYM Diet and I've Learned I Eat A Lot of Carbs

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

I'm Doing the IIFYM Diet and I've Learned I Eat A Lot of Carbs | FroBunni

For the past few months, my diet has been terrible. I've been drinking more soda, pastries, candy, etc., and even worse, they're not related to hunger, but more so impulse. Like last week, I literally ate two donuts in the span of 15 minutes because someone brought them in the office...and then I regretted it, which is worse than eating two donuts in 15 minutes because I don't like to tie shame to my diet.

So, I decided to reset and try the IIFYM (if it fits your macros) diet, also known as the flexible diet. Basically, I eat according to my macro-nutrient limits - carbs, fat, and protein - not just calories. I put my lifestyle and weight goals in a macros calculator, and my results were sent to me in an email. My daily calorie limit is set to about 1400 (sounds low, but I actually eat only around 1300-1500 calories daily), and my macros are 98 grams of protein, 51 grams of fat, and 133 grams of carbohydrates. I decided to update my MyFitnessPal account to premium to be able to better track my macros, and yesterday began day one.

IIFYM My Fitness Pal | FroBunniIIFYM My Fitness Pal | FroBunni

Yeah, see this...yesterday was bad. I randomly ate a bagel (remember that whole impulse eating thing) when I wasn't hungry, and my sandwich and potatoes were loaded with carbs. Not to mention, my protein intake is pretty sad and pathetic. It's actual below recommended protein levels for my body and activity levels.

This was a pretty big wake-up call, and I'm trying to figure out ways to reconcile it. One of the things that makes this hard is that I'm a picky eater. I don't like tofu unless it's blended in a smoothie or in miso soup. And quinoa, avocados, and chia seed pudding (I'm cool with chia seeds until you make that nasty, snot-consistency pudding) are just gross. I'm not planning on bringing meat back in my apartment, but I'm currently looking into companies that sell non-meat protein alternatives, like MorningStar, Beyond Meat, and Gardein. I'm also not planning on going the paleo route either, so I'm keeping the pasta, rice, oats, and cereal, but keeping it to a half a serving instead of a full one.

While I don't expect to get it right today (I'm still over today anyways, so it's not like it matters), tomorrow, or even within a week, hopefully in a month, I can get this right and balance out my carb intake to where it should be.

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Natural Hair Gels without PVP

Thursday, May 18, 2017

FroBunni | Natural Hair Gels Without PVP header

When I originally thought about writing this blog post and creating this infographic, I thought it would take me forever to find gels with no PVP, but to my surprise, this was pretty easy.

PVP is an ingredient often found in hair gel, and other hair products that define curly styles and reduce frizz. It’s your best defense against humidity, and for me, hair gels with PVP would be a holy grail during the summer’s oppressive heat and brutal humidity…but my hair isn’t fond of it.

Humidity is the amount of water vapor in the air, and the higher the humidity, the more water. When there’s a lot of water in the air, curly and natural hair will frizz, potentially creating knots and tangles. PVP works by creating a seal around the hair blocking moisture out, meaning no frizz. Because of its ability to block moisture out, PVP can be drying for some people, and since my hair needs moisture, I’m one of those people.

So, like every summer, I will be on the search for a hair gel without PVP, but can still keep a stretched or straight hairstyle from turning into a large poof ball. Lucky for me, a quick google search gave me a great start.




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Review: Infinity Jars

Sunday, May 14, 2017

FroBunni: Review: Infinity Jars

I don't make this as apparent on my blog as I do on Instagram, but I consider myself a foodie. I love cooking different recipes and cuisines, so I have quite a large collection of cookbooks and kitchen gadgets, despite being in a tiny studio. From a mandolin, to a spiralizer, coffee press, blender, food processor, you name it, I more than likely have it. But what I have it kitchen gadgets, I lack in decent storage containers. I keep everything in plastic, which is economical (better than getting something that creates waste), but I wish I had glass, which is better for the environment, safer to microwave, and is resistant to food stains. So when Infinity Jars offered to send me some bottles, I jumped at the chance.

Fun fact about Infinity Jars, I actually heard about them before they emailed me. They're rather popular in the natural hair community, especially for women who make their own hair products and need to store their DIY mixtures.

Infinity Jars has many different kinds and sizes of jars and bottles. I had to spend a couple of days deciding what I wanted. The easiest pick was the square glass bottle with oil spout. I keep canola oil next to my stove for cooking and I use it literally every day. It's a staple in my kitchen; it's a healthy fat contain omega 3's, it doesn't have a strong taste like olive oil, and it has a high smoke point perfect for frying and roasting. In the original bottle, it's an eyesore, but I knew the glass bottle from Infinity Jars would be perfect.

I also got the 500ml glass jar with the intention to use it to store my linguine pasta.


After a week, I was excited to get my bottles in the mail. I took them out of the box, cut off the bubble wrap, and washed them. When they were fully dried, I put my oil in the bottle...and tried to figure out what to do with the jar. It wasn't tall enough to hold my linguine. Then I realized it's the perfect size to keep my hibiscus tea in, which was just sitting in a drawer in the original plastic bag it came in.

I've had my Infinity Jars for two weeks now, and I honestly love them. My oil is now in a beautiful glass bottle on my counter. And with the oil spout, I never accidentally put too much oil in a pan or pot. I also love my tea jar, and honestly, if you have tea, Infinity Jars are your best bet to keeping your tea fresher longer. Because of Infinity Jars' design, which keeps light and air out, tea will keep its color and flavor for twice as long.

All in all, these jars are really awesome. I definitely recommend them for people trying to bring more eco-friendly glass containers in their kitchen, as well as using them for other purposes, such as beauty products and cosmetics.

Disclosure: I was not compensated for this post, however I did receive a sample for my review. All opinions are my own and not influenced in any way.

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Workouts For The Month

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

FroBunni | Workouts for the Month

I have been super busy lately! From teaching yoga, doing yoga, work, the gym, social outings, and more, I've found that I need to be more strategic with my time. I've been meal planning, bullet journaling, and trying to get every second I can out of my day. And since everything is now planned out, that means my workouts are too, and I've decided to bring back my ever popular workouts of the week. Except instead of providing them each week, I'm going to be easy on myself and do workouts for the month!

When I'm not getting my workouts in at the gym or going to yoga, I workout at home early in the morning. I rotate between cardio, strength, and combo cardio and strength. I've found that working out daily really helps me stay calm despite my recently chaotic life. Not to mention feeling awesome because of endorphins! So, without further ado, here are my workouts for the month!

FroBunni | Workouts Infographic

Click the links if you don't know how to do the exercises in the image:

Cardio
Burpees
Jump Squats
Mountain Climbers
Clap Push-Ups (I do this on my knees to make it easier)

Strength
Deadlifts to Overhead Press
Bicep Curls
Lateral Lunges
Walk Out Push-Ups
Plank

Cardio and Strength
180 Jump Squats
Side Lateral Raises
Alternating Lunges
Side to Side Jump Push-Ups (Again, I do these on my knees and just move the arms and upper body)
Supermans

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Hungry Harvest: Buying Ugly Fruits And Vegetables

Sunday, May 7, 2017

This is a sponsored post that contains an affiliate link.

I've been meaning to do this post for awhile, and I'm happy I finally have the time to write it! Since January, I've been getting Hungry Harvest, a subscription service that sends people ugly fruit and vegetables. I remember first seeing them on Shark Tank, and I was amazed that retail stores turn down fruits and vegetables all because they don't look "normal." While some of the produce gets repurposed, for example turned into fertilizer for farming; and retail stores are making the effort to use the produce, such as selling cut up and ready to roast squash; there's still a lot of food that is thrown out contributing to food waste, which also increases green house emissions adding to global warming.

I get Hungry Harvest delivered every other week, and I have enough food to last me those two weeks.  I do supplement my produce with some frozen fruits and vegetables, but other than that, I very rarely need to get fresh produce at the grocery store. In the picture above, I had a lot more onions, another sweet pepper, and a few more apples, just to give you an idea of how much food I was sent. Also, for every box they send, they send another to a family in need, which is awesome. Hungry Harvest only delivers in the DMV area, as well as Philadelphia, but there are many other ugly fruit and vegetable subscription services similar to them (Imperfect Produce in the Bay Area and soon LA and Local Roots NY in NYC).

Since I've been ordering from them, I waste a lot less food (which is also due to the fact that I don't keep meat in my apartment anymore). If I know I won't use it before it goes bad, I freeze it for later, which also helps cut down on food waste. 

I love Hungry Harvest so much (I even convinced my organization's CEO to get the Office Harvest for everyone at the office), and I just had to share with everyone. If you're trying to reduce your food waste, and can't purchase ugly fruit and vegetables, there are other ways to reduce food waste. 


Disclosure: I've become so passionate about ugly fruits and vegetables and reducing food waste that I've become a Hungry Harvest Ambassador. Hooray, I'm a #hungryharvesthero! Use the code HERO5 to get $5 off your Hungry Harvest order. While I did not receive any compensation for this post, it does contain an affiliate link, and I may receive free or discounted products. All opinions are my own and not influenced in any way. 


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