Monday, November 1, 2010

Homemade flax seed hair gel

I am a curly girl. I am on a quest to find the perfect routine for my curls. Lately, I've been researching a lot of products, styling techniques and do it yourself potions on . I decided to try to create my own homemade flax seed hair gel and this photo shows my beautiful results. I feel better about putting all natural products in my hair and being nice to my curls. I am very pleased with how my hair reacted and how soft my curls are from using this hair gel.

Homemade flax seed hair gel (FSG):

1 cup distilled water

1 tbsp sea salt

2 tbsp flax seed

3 tbsp aloe vera gel

1 tbsp glycerin

1 tbsp grape seed oil

4 drops lavender essential oil

In a small pot mix sea salt in distilled water, add flax seeds and bring to a boil. Stir seeds and boil for 2 min, remove from heat and let sit for 20 min. Use old pantyhose over a small jar as filter for seeds (I am going to try placing the seeds in a tea mesh strainer ball next time) and squeeze the seeds with tongs to remove more gel. It will be the consistency of egg white or snot. Beat the FSG and then add the all the other ingredients ( aloe vera, glycerin, grape seed oil and lavender essential oil).

Apply to wet (not yet towel dried) hair as follows: use 2 fingers to scoop FSG, rub in hand and scrunch into one side of hair, repeat on other side, flip hair and repeat on front section of hair. Use t shirt or microfiber hair to scrunch hair dry. Plop hair with long sleeve t shirt for 15 min (flip hair onto long sleeve t shirt, use arms to tie turban over head). Use pixie curl defuser method to further dry hair (use low heat, low speed setting and turn off hairdryer in between drying sections of hair, this reduces frizzies).

Saturday, September 18, 2010


I have decided to finally fully embrace my natural curly hair. I even took a break all summer from blow drying my hair. Recently my hair stylist introduced me to a great book Curly Girl by Lorraine Massey (the quiz, 12-step and hair facts are excerpts of the book). I highly recommend it to all my curly haired friends and I wish I had known all this about my curly hair years ago. And so I want to share my knowledge of embracing curl potential with you.


Do you often where your hair pulled back in a ponytail?

Does your hair develop volume (frizz) in humid, hot or wet weather?

Does your hair make you feel out of control?

Do you find yourself crying after haircuts?

Do you look back at old photos and recall how you felt about your hair and yourself on the day the picture was taken? Was there a strong correlation between your hair and your mood?

Do you almost always have a haze of frizz around your head?

Do you blow-dry your hair so often that its texture is as dry and brittle as toast?

Does your budget for products to straighten or relax your hair exceed your annual tax-deductable contribution to charity?

Do you live in fear of humidity, sweating or any weather or activity that might unmask you as a curly girl?

Are you almost always unhappy with your hair?

Do you worry about your hair before any big occasion, like a wedding or a job interview?

If you answered yes to one or more questions, congratulations! You know who you are; you are my curly haired friend! Please read on!

12-step Personal Hair Growth and Recovery Program

Step One

I admit that I am powerless over my true nature - and that my curly hair will continue to be unmanageable if I deny and abuse it as I have in the past.*

*You can fight the truth for only so long, Make peace now, stope deluding yourself and see your hair for what it truly is.

Step Two

I will stop torturing myself with blow-dryers, brushes, straighteners, rollers, irons and other diabolical ways to straighten my hair, and I will regain my sanity as a curly-haired person. I will search my bathroom for such items and donate them to charity or sell on ebay. (or just toss them out)

Step Three

I will admit my addiction to going straight and attempt to discover why I have wasted my time in this pursuit. I will accept the nature of my hair and celebrate it rather than fight it.

Step Four

I will make a decision to turn my curls over to a higher power – the power that created me and my hair – and I will find a sponsor to mentor me as a recovering curly girl.

Step Five

I will give in to the forces of nature, embracing humidity, rain and wind, facing the elements confidently because I am no longer attempting to go against nature and control my curls.

Step Six

I will make a list of relatives and friends who encourage my curl denial with compliments about my straight hair. I will forgive them as well as hairdressers who abetted my habit.

Step Seven

I will accept that the scalp and the hair are two different organs with totally different needs, and I will treat them accordingly.

Step Eight

I will give up forever shampoo dependency and learn how to keep my hair clean without turning to products that harm me.

Step Nine

I admit that it is my responsibility to take care of my hair in the best way possible. I will learn how to dry it without harming it, and I will let my curls grow to their full potential.

Step Ten

Whenever I am tempted to go straight, I will call a mentor or friend who has embraced her curly destiny and seek her encouragement in living an honest curly life.

Step Eleven

I will carry the message of curly hair to other women still living in curl denial.

Step Twelve

I will practice the principles that I have learned every day of my life.

Hair facts:

Hair grows at a rate of about a half inch a month. It develops under your scalp, in a tiny sac called the follicle. Inside the follicle it’s alive. When hair comes to the surface the fiber hardens. The follicle will keep growing the hair for three to five years. When it stops growing, it goes into a period of rest – a few weeks only while the root is released from the follicle – then it drops out. You lose about a hundred hairs a day, not a bad percentage considering you have at least one hundred thousand on your head at any given time. Within days after a hair is shed, another hair starts growing to replace it.

“Curly hair is so much dryer than other types of hair,” says Dr. David H. Kingsley of the Institute of Trichologists, “because there are only about 100,000 hairs on a curly head, as opposed to about 120,000 straight hairs. And because there is less hair, there are fewer follicles and therefore fewer sebaceous glands to produce oil.”

The hair is keratin: the scalp is skin and needs to be treated the way we treat our facial skin – by cleansing it gently and keeping it moisturized.

MY NEW ROUTINE - Secrets to soft, frizz-free curly hair :

Curly Girl recommends throwing out all your bottles of shampoo and get rid of your blow- dryer. I haven’t gone to that extreme, but there are a few principles of taking care of curly hair that I am sticking to.

-shampoo every other day

-only comb hair in the shower with a wide toothed comb after conditioning, finger comb hair only afterwards if necessary (it’s only ok to comb or brush hair after shower if blow-drying straight)

-squeeze excess water out of hair after shower, smooth argan oil on ends of hair, scrunch clear gel (alcohol free) evenly into hair

- use t- shirt to scrunch dry hair ( I learned the technique from this site This helps your curls form to their natural shape without creating frizz which you can get from rubbing with a towel or creating a towel turban. You may also want to try "plunking" to shape your long curls.(look up "plunking" on I think I will be asking Santa for one of these products.

- spritz hair with spray gel or salt water (2 tablespoons fine sea salt, distilled water, 2 drops lavender essential oil in spray bottle)

- allow hair to air dry or wait until 90% dry and then use diffuser on low setting.

-sleep with hair braided to minimize frizzy bedhead (spritz hair with salt water to refresh curls in the morning)

I have been researching more curly hair techniques, products, etc. and recommend you check out:

p.s. curly hair rocks!

Saturday, October 10, 2009


I finally was able to go on my dream vacation to London and it was so much fun. Here are some photos of the highlights of our little trip.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

More adventures in Mexico

One of my wedding gifts from Luke was a journal in which we took turns writing down our memories of our wedding day and our honeymoon adventures. I am so glad we wrote the memories down right away because it is so hard to remember everything just from the photos. I've never been good at keeping a journal, but I have always tried to keep a journal when I go on a trip so I can remember things better. Hopefully now with blogging, I will get better at recording memories.

Wednesday in Mexico, we went on The Coba Maya Adventure, which included hiking in the wilderness, a zip line, repelling into a cave to float on inner tubes in the pond inside the cave, canoeing and the Coba ruins which we hiked up. Coba has the only ruins you can climb right now. We have waited about a month to get photos from our tour guide of this day (so that is my excuse for my delay in updating my blog).

We looked like such dorks wearing harnesses and helmets for the zip line. Luke put his helmet on backwards at first, it was funny. They gave us a "Mayan brake" which was a wooden stick with a notch in it to pull on the zip line to brake before one of the Mayan men helped us gracefully land.

We also had a Mayan medicine man give us a blessing (and blew smoke in our faces).

The cave we repelled 50 feet into is referred to as the 7 skeletons. Mayans used to perform human sacrifices and 7 human remains from these sacrifices were found in this cave years ago. We repelled down the cave into a pond and got to float around in inner tubes. We had the option of being pulled back up on that same rope line or climbing a rope ladder. For some reason, we both decided to climb our way out and that was quite a workout. We were connected to a safety line and climbed sideways up the ladder. It was a little scary and I did not want to look down.

Then we went canoeing in a little lagoon which was fun and relaxing. The local Mayans cooked lunch for us which included soup, rice, beans, empanadas and spaghetti in case anyone wanted American food. The also had yummy apple juice for us.

We hopped back in the van to go to the see Mayan ruins. First we had a little tour with an archaeologist who told us the little they knew about the ruins. It's a shame they don't know what they were originally called because the conquerors destroyed all the Mayan records and gave new names to the places while destroying whatever else they wanted. It was cool that they had a ball court with a horizontal hoop and we were told that in the days of human sacrifices, it was the winner that was sacrificed and it was an honor to be sacrificed to the gods. Personally I would be happy to be the loser of that ball game.

We only had 30 minutes after our guided tour to get to the main pyramid to hike up. Our options were to walk, rent bikes or take a bicycle taxi. We opted for the taxi ride because I knew my thighs would be hurting from climbing all the steps and I would not want to be pedaling myself back. I wish we had taken a picture of the taxi. It actually had 3 wheels and the passengers sit in front of the driver and it was a fun ride.

at the bottom of the pyramid

at the top of the pyramid

climbing back down

We climbed Nohuch Muul the tallest pyramid in the Yucatan. It had such steep, narrow steps and there was a rope in the middle. We were so hot and thirsty when we got back down. There was a little drink stand for us tourists and we bought some Mexican soda for our bike taxi ride back. It was a really fun day.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Swimming with Dolphins

Tuesday was another fun day. I got to swim with dolphins and Luke watched from the sidelines. I was the only one in the group, so I got an hour of just me, the trainer and the two dolphins. They have 25 dolphins in their dolphinarium. The two dolphins that I got to play with were the dominant ones of the group. Their names were Squallo and Mercurio, they were 20 and 27 yr old males. It was so much fun to learn about dolphins and learn commands to give them to do tricks like backflips, spin, talk and clap.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Honeymoon Trip Part I

We headed to Cancun, Mexico early Sunday morning, the day after our wedding. It was a direct flight from Salt Lake City, Utah to Cancun, Mexico and it was my first trip out of the country. When we arrived, we took a shuttle bus to Akumal, which is an hour south of Cancun, which is where the resort was that we booked. When we arrived at the gate of the resort we ran into a problem. Apparently the resort has been shut down for the past 2 weeks "due to the incidents" aka swine flu. Why wasn't this information given to us or the shuttle service? We had confirmed our flight and hotel information the week before and the shuttle service had even told us the name of the supposed conseirge that was to greet us at the resort in Akumal. It was very frustrating for us tired and hungry travelers, but they arranged for us to stay at the same resort in Cancun.

We ended up staying at the Grand Oasis Cancun which is an all inclusive resort. There was a fountain in the middle of the building and it looked like a little jungle that surrounded it. There were vines hanging from the edges of all the 6 floors. It looked really cool. We did get an ocean view room, but we were on the 1st floor, so we couldn't quite see the ocean from our room, but the shared balcony had an amazing view. The color of the ocean in the Carribean is such a beautiful blue, I loved it.

Somehow we were talked into doing a timeshare-like presentation on Monday morning. We ended up going through 5 different sales people who kept telling us we were ridiculous for passing up this opportunity to invest with them. We just kept telling them we didn't want to commit to anything that day and we would think about it. It wasn't fun getting harassed by all of them, but we did end up with a voucher for 3day/2night stay at the same resort for sitting through all that.

Monday night we became pirates. We sailed on the Caribbean Sea on a pirate ship from 7 to 1030. It was so cool to watch the sunset while we were on the ship. We took a pirate oath to obey the captain and thus became pirates. We ate a yummy lobster dinner and drank pina coladas. An enemy pirate ship sailed up along side us and there was a battle. There were guns and sword fights. The pirates even danced for us. There was a Mexican midget pirate and the captain had a hook. We had so much fun.

To be continued.....

Monday, May 25, 2009

Wedding Day Bliss

Luke and I got married to each other on Saturday May 16th 2009. It was so fun to have all of our family and so many friends there to celebrate the day with us. The day was such a blur for the two of us. It went by so fast and everything went so smoothly. The wedding ceremony was in the Salt Lake Temple at 2pm and it was such a sweet ceremony that it was impossible for me to hold back my tears.

We were greeted outside by the paparazzi of family and friends cheering for us while snapping photos and shooting videos. It was fun taking pictures with everyone.

The reception was at the Gallivan Center later that evening. We were busy all afternoon with our photo shoot around the temple and rode Trax down to the Gallivan Center. We had a little downtime to rest my feet and eat a little bit before more picture taking began again and the guests arrived. The whole day was more fun than I had imagined.

I felt like a princess all day and Luke looked so handsome in his tuxedo.

The cupcake tower was amazing and the cupcakes were so pretty with all the different flowers of icing decorated with glitter dust on them.

The harp was beautiful music to fill the room.I loved the chocolate fountain; it made the whole room smells so yummy.

I loved the gorgeous monarch butterflies in the centerpieces, and releasing them was so fun with my sweet nieces and nephews. It was also so fun to have my little sister catch my bouquet.

I couldn't have had the day go any smoother without the great help of Kristin, Haley, Sunny, Bonnie, Eric and Jesse; they were such a wonderful crew that made my wedding day so beautiful and special.

I will post more photos of the wedding day and our adventures in Mexico soon.