Monday, October 1, 2012

1in3: Let the Challenge Begin!

Starting length: Approximately 1 inch
until waistlength (WSL).
Today, October 1, is the official start date of the 1in3 challenge!  (For challenge guidelines, read this post.)

So, what's in store for this month?  Well, our goal is to retain 1/3 to 1/2 an inch (depending on your monthly growth rate) in 31 days.  If you really think about, that leaves little to no room for trimming, breakage, slacking on your regimen, and slacking on your health.

I've been scissor happy, loose hair happy, and heat happy since the end of our first challenge.  Cuts (I wanted to diminish my naturally forming mullet) and out styles (I did more twistouts this summer than I've ever done) and heat galore (I think I've flat-ironed my hair 4+ times this summer).  Fortunately, my hair did not take a turn for the worse, BUT I did not retain as much length as I could have since almost touching waistlength last winter.  Thus, getting back to this challenge will be a real 
motivation for not just you all, but for me as well. :o)  

So what is our focus for this month?  It is the word focus.
  • F is for "Firm".  Remain firm with your plan.  Do not get lazy or sidetracked.
  • O is for "Onward".  Progress onward to meet your goal.  Do not dwell on previous setbacks.  Do not compare yourself to others.  The path to achieving your goal is in front of you, not behind you or to your right or left.
  • C is for "Care".  Retaining length requires proper care of your hair.  Look to the challenge rules for strict guidance.
  • U is for "Undaunted".  If you do face obstacles this month, remain undaunted.  Do not become discouraged along the way.  Keep on pushing ... onward.  Remain ... firm.  
  • S is for "Success".  The first step to achieving your goal is to believe that success can become a reality.  In spite of the fact that my hair never grew past my collar bone for most of my life, I believed it was possible to break that barrier ... and I did.

So stay FOCUSed this month!  This month is smoothies galore and box braid extensions for me. :o)

So, ladies.  What is your hair care plan for this month? What style(s) will you wear?

Photos of my box braid extensions coming next week!


Unknown said...

Im starting this challenge with my mom, shes rocking mini twists that should last her for a good 3/4 weeks and im doing smedium sized twists that can be be pinned up any which way i like.. Right now i have them flat twisted into 6 rows going back =)

You can check out the style on my tumblr page!:

Unknown said...

Starting this challenge with box braids(kanekalon hair) that has already been in my hair for a month. I have about another 2 weeks to go then I will put 2 strand twist.

I will post pictures of my new growth (with the braids) on my blog:

I'm also proud to say that I did my own hair.....

tamspray123 said...

I am rocking mini twist that were suppose to be in for a month but need to come out after 2 weeks. I will be putting my hair into medium twist and putting it an up do for 2 weeks. After that a set of box braids that hopefully will last 3 weeks.

Lumi said...

I once joined this challenge, but failed tremendously, due to the fact that I started with totally damaged hair.
My hair is now only about 7 inches, but I still have a lot of damaged ends I have not yet gotten rid off.
I plan on trimming about 3 - 4 inches tomorrow and then start the challenge as from tommorow.

Since my hair will be so short and I don't know much protective styles for shorter hair, I wanted to ask what the best way is to keep hair moisturized when in braid extensions.
I just loosed a set of yarn braids and although I love the style, it is terrible for my scalp.
I did do an ACV rinse before braiding my hair, I weekly cleansed my hair with baking soda cleansing instead of shampooing, regularly spritzed my hair with water/olive oil and oiled my scalp with Shea Butter when it felt dry, but that had to be almost everyday, because the itching was too intense.
When I did spritz enough, the build-up was just too much that I had to take out the braids after 4 weeks at most.

It would be very helpful if you could give me any advice on what is best to avoid build-up or how in general I could keep my braids looking good for at least 6 - 8 weeks.


LaNeshe said...

I'm going to go with mini twists, and try to even wear them pinned up most of the time. I'm also going to try some head wraps, and when it gets a bit cooler, knit hats!

Loo said...

Awww, that's cute that you're doing this with your mom. Thanks for checking in, Acoustique_Soul! Off to check out your tumblr page. :o)

Loo said...

Thanks for checking in, Nessa! You did your own hair? That is great! I can't wait to see your pics. Off to check out your blog! :o)

Loo said...

Loving the versatility in styles! Thanks for checking in, Tamspray. :o)

Loo said...

Thanks for checking in, Lumi! It's good that you are starting with a fresh cut. Hopefully you'll gain more from the challenge this go around.

The best way to maintain moisture in braid extensions:
- Use extension hair (e.g., kanekalon) that is not as drying; yarn tends to be more drying.
- Spritz with a commercial braid spray or a concoction of water, oil (e.g., jojoba, grapeseed), aloe vera juice, and/or glycerin.
- Do a thorough deep conditioning and moisturizing prior to the install of the braids.
- For an itchy scalp, spritz a combination of water and tea tree oil (and jojoba oil for dry scalp) instead of oiling with shea butter.

To avoid build-up:
- Refrain from heavy products (e.g., butters) while in braids. It is fine to use a little only once post wash, but not repeatedly.
- Apply diluted conditioner (instead of straight conditioner) to your braids after washing your braids. Then rinse thoroughly.

I hope this helps! Feel free to ask any more questions. :o)

Loo said...

Loving the sound of this! Thanks for checking in, LaNeshe! :o)

Lumi said...

Thank you very much! I just cut my hair and man, I had totally forgotten how it felt to have a twa. I don't really know what to do with my hair as for now except braids, so I'll definitely pit your advice into practice.
I have once heard about tea tree oil to reduce the itchiness, so I will surely try it out.

Unknown said...

sooo even though I was/(am)superbly excited about this challenge a number of mishaps and events occurred preventing me from doing my protective styling prior to yesterday. but not to be defeated i have just deemed this week as one of my any hairstyle week allowances and praying that i can hold out to the week of my birthday (w/o December 24, were i plan to flat-iron my hair for the first time since my last perm in June 2011 and actually wearing my natural out in February 2012)to use the other one.
I am actually perusing YT now trying to get ideals and the consensus so far is to definitely do the Flat Twisting up into either a synthetic piece or a faux bun. The Crochet braids is also a definite, the only thing is finding the adequate time seeing how they take me all of 5 hours or so to do. i did a pre-challenge mini twist test run and it was OK but i am still a lil not enthused about how fine/thin my hair is in areas which cause them not to be full looking. anywhoo going to try to keep my blog updated with pics once i do them.

Unknown said...

hey, Loo

I also use your tips above with my braids,
I spritz my hair every morning with water and oil my scalp twice a week.

However, this time I decided to wash my hair every 2 weeks with the braids in, or should I say co-wash. I did a deep conditioner overnight and co-washed in the morning.

you can see pic at:

Loo said...

I'm proud of you for persevering, Natalie! Keep it up. :o)

Loo said...

@Lumi: You're welcome. :o)

@Nessa: Thanks, Nessa! I like your idea of co-washing while in braid extensions. I might test that out. :o)

Mrs Jai said...

I'm also checking in, I'm following your lead and getting box braids put in on Friday. My hair is washed and conditioned ready to go. Currently my hair is at below cbl at the back and sides and near my jaw line in front. I'm looking to reach apl as my next goal but I'm worried about dryness and tension from the braids. I know you've left some tips above but I'll be so grateful if you can do a post dedicated to caring for hair in box braids. Thanks

Devonee said...

Is it too late to join this challenge? I signed up for the 3in6 challenge back in Jan/Feb 2011, but I couldn't go so long without washing and retwisting due to the length of my hair then and I was not and still is not a fan of added hair. Now that my hair is much longer, I'm able to go longer periods of time with twists. I will love to join. If it is not too late, I plan to wash. dc and trim my hair tonight to prep for some mini twists tomorrow. I will keep them in for the month of October. This will be my first time doing mini twists. Since I have a 4 day weekend, I feel this is my opportunity to just do it...

Beautiful Me said...

I am new to your it too late to join this challenge?

Loo said...

Hey, Mrs. Jai. Yep, it is in plan to post box braid care tips next week! :o)

Loo said...

Hi Devonee. No it's not too late to join! Welcome back. :o)

Loo said...

Hi Beautiful Me. You still have time to join. Welcome! :o)

Ms. T. Fying said...

First time participant. I have about 1-1.5" of hair on my head (cut it all off last month). This seems fun, but do you have any suggestions for protective styles at my length? I can't really braid or twist the little that I have, and have so far been conditioner cleansing every morning.

Beautiful Me said...

Awesome!!!! I'm soooo excited!

Loo said...

Hi Ms. T. Flying! With hair around 1 to 2 inches, protective styling isn't as necessary to retain length. You can enjoy wash n' gos and puffs until your hair gets to length for braiding or twisting. However, if you do want to wear protective styles, some options include: braid extensions, twist extensions, and mini bantu knots. At your length, coils can also work as a "protective" style. I hope that helps! :o)

Loo said...


Nefertiti said...

Even though I started my 1in3 plan on October 1st (actually, I started slightly before on September 30th, since that was my hair day), I completely forgot to come tell y'all. I don't have measurements either, because I totally forgot to take any. Will do that over the weekend.

Anyway, my hair is in a combo of flat twists and braids, just to keep it semi-flat for wigs and headwraps. Will undo these twists/braids ("twaids"?) at two weeks, unless I stretch it to a third, then go right back in with a fresh set. I'm sticking to styles that hide my hair for 100% protection in month 1. If I can handle it for November, I will continue. So far, I don't mind it, because I love headwraps anyway, and I've been rocking a curly fro wig when I want to switch things up from the turbans.

Finally, I'm back on the workout wagon and doing better with my water. Feeling good!

Loo said...

Loving the name "twaids"! Thank you for checking in, Nefertiti. :o)

Beautiful Me said...

what I've been doing so far: On my last wash day which was last friday, I put my hair into twists and air-dried. On Saturday after work I transitioned my twists into plaits. I've been moisturizing and sealing faithfully.
Future Intentions:I plan on wearing my hair in a twist out for two days (this firday-Saturday) before re-plaiting for possibly another two-three weeks after which I plan to thoroughly pamper my hair before getting a weave installed for the rest of the challenge.

Loo said...

Loving the sound of your protective style regimen! Thanks for checking in, Beautiful Me. :o)

NowIamNappy said...

I tried to post earlier this week to no avail, but I installed my own set of twists to last me through the month of October. I plan to use yarn braids for the months of November and December. I've been moisturizing daily and plan to make a spritz for daily use when I have my yarn braids.

Loo said...

Thanks for checking in, NowIamNappy! I'm liking the sound of your regimen. I'm sure the yarn braids will look gorgeous! :o)

A Simple Thing said...

Okay, slightly tardy to the party.

Where I am, eating fresh fruit and veg is considered normal, so that's not too much of a biggie. Also, following blogilates' OMGOctober plan Twice a week. I'm sore like crazy the day after, but it's for a good reason (er, health as well as hair!)

Had a bit of a panic that I'll be writing about on my blog when I realised that I have chunks of hair that're only 8 inches. I've been on this HHJ for about two years and started out with shoulder length hair *crushing disappointment*

Co-washing once a week alternating with Bentonite clay treatments (love them!).
Cassia once a month.
Onto my fourth (fifth?) week of these mini twists - I was considering going for 8 weeks, and it's entirely possible, but I think I'm going to take this down next week, for some deep cleansing.
And then chunky twists for 2 weeks at a time :)