Recent Posts

Climate Change and Social Media: A Rant

Climate Change and Social Media: A Rant

Disclaimer: this is a rant, not a scientific journal. Take my opinions for what they are…opinions. About a month ago, the Paris Agreement was a huge deal. Suddenly, out of nowhere, the world of social media has an influx of environmentalists like I’ve never seen […]

The Organ Donation Process Experience

The Organ Donation Process Experience

When I was in my final semester of college, I took a class called “Psychology of Death and Dying.” At that time, I took it because it was an easy class and I needed an elective credit. My degree is in Materials Science & Engineering, […]

First DevaCut Experience: A Full Review

First DevaCut Experience: A Full Review

About a week and a half ago, I decided to take a trip home for one of my good friend’s weddings. I don’t think I’ve come out and said it, but my hometown is in Anchorage, Alaska. Yep, surprise! So trips home are few and far between since I now live a few thousand miles away. Anyways, a few DAYS before leaving I was able to book my first DevaCut! Like almost everything, news of Devacurl has taken forever to reach Alaska. Where I live now, I’d need to book my first DevaCut  months in advance. Actual months. So I was shocked (and a little nervous) that I could book it only three days prior. AND, it was cheaper! Back home, a DevaCut costs around $80. My appointment was $60. In the end, I got a new client 10% discount so the cut cost $54. I tipped her $16 bringing my total to $70 –  a a 30% tip and still less than what I’d figured to pay.

Before it Began

My first DevaCut appointment was set for an hour and a half, and I wasn’t sure what to expect. The stylist (Jalynne at Marie’s Beauty in Anchorage) brought me over to the chair and said she would cut my hair dry, then wash and style, and then do a little more cutting as needed. She let me know she would be talking a lot about the products and explaining how to use them. She asked which DevaCurl products I’ve tried (the answer is what is in the Celebrate Wavy kit – read my review here) and how my wash/style routine is at home. She asked what I wanted for my hair and the answer was pretty simple: any dead ends gone, and shape to my lifeless mop. I also told her I didn’t mind losing some length if it meant that I’d have a better shape.

Phase One of my First DevaCut: Dry Cut

The stylist took off between two and five inches of hair depending on the section. Watching her in the mirror was amazing. I saw her giving life to my hair before my eyes and it was very interesting. It was like she was sculpting my hair – actually sculpting. This part of the process took maybe 20 minutes or so, which was slightly shorter than I expected. The stylist asked me several questions about DevaCurl during this time. She also gave me some general information of why she was cutting my hair this way. We talked a bit more in detail about my current routine, and she confirmed that showering at night will likely need to end. She told me to kick hubby out of the shower because “he doesn’t have to worry as much about his hair,” which was hilarious and true. We’ll see where that fits into my troubleshooting.

Phase Two: The Wash and (some) Styling

The majority of the talking about products happened during the wash/condition. She used the Low-Poo original and the One Condition Delight on my hair. At this time, I told her I can’t stand the smell of the Wavy (Delight) line. She told me that the original line would be perfectly fine for my hair, and I definitely prefer that scent. If/when I purchase more Deva shampoo/conditioner, I’ll go for the original line. Then came the unique part: the stylist handed me a towel saying it was “for my eyes” then laid a towel over my shoes. She had me flip my head over and began scrunching in the Frizz Free Volumizing Foam. She also used some of the styling cream and continued. After scrunching for a couple of minutes, I flipped my head back over and we walked back to the styling chair, where she prepped my hair to dry.

Phase Three: Drying/Diffusing

I’m not sure if this is how traditional DevaCuts are done, but she clipped my hair for volume and set me up under a hood dryer. The stylist said this would be faster than diffusing all of my hair. I would definitely agree. She left me for about 15 minutes, came back, took out the clips, and left for maybe 5 more. Then, she took off the hood and began diffusing my hair. I noted immediately that she was not using the DevaFuser, but instead used a basic diffuser. I didn’t mind because my hair was looking awesome, and opted not to ask in case she isn’t supposed to be using a different type. She diffused for a few minutes to ensure my hair was fully dry to finish shaping. Then, she “scrunched out the crunch” that was left from the styling products. Finally, she shaped just a tiny bit more and I was set!

Results of My First DevaCut!

BEFORE: My hair about a month before my first DevaCut. Very flat with light layers.

 

AFTER: The result of my first DevaCut!

The final result is what you see in the photo and I LOVE it! The stylist definitely went a bit shorter but my hair needed it. My hair looked amazing through day two, but started to get more product build up than usual by day 3. My hair will adjust to the product, but it will be interesting to see what happens when I return to my “normal” hair routine with different products.

Have YOU had a DevaCut? Are you thinking about your first DevaCut? Let me know!

-Rachel

If you are interested in purchasing DevaCurl – click here (not an affiliate link. Just a link.) Nothing in this post is sponsored.

Using Gel in 2B Waves: Troubleshooting Hair Episode 1

Using Gel in 2B Waves: Troubleshooting Hair Episode 1

I called this page the “Natural Hair Journey” because, well, it’s a process and I haven’t quite figured out my struggles. I am trying something new today (that will be the next troubleshooting post) and it made me realize I should write about what I’ve […]

Multi-Store Grocery List 6/25/17

Multi-Store Grocery List 6/25/17

  Okay quick story about this multi-store grocery trip, my husband woke up and at 8am decided he was going to go grocery shopping. He was trying to get a jump start on our day. It helped some but he REALLY overspent on the food […]

DevaCurl Celebrate Wavy Kit Review

DevaCurl Celebrate Wavy Kit Review

Well, I’m almost three months into my natural hair journey (see my hair background here), and I’ve had to buy a new set of products since I used up the set I began with: the DevaCurl Celebrate Wavy kit. 

 

Honestly, I began my natural hair journey because of seeing the DevaCurl ads everywhere on social media. The marketing totally worked on me, and I was sick of heat styling my hair. So I saw the Final Sale on the Celebrate Wavy kit and jumped right in.

Price & Contents

The kit was $40 original price, but I paid $30 and the shipping was free. The kit is still available on final sale (link) and contains

  • Low Poo Delight (12oz)
  • One Condition Delight (12oz)
  • Wavemaker Styler (3oz size not full size)
  • Deva Scarf

So value wise, this is a VERY good deal. The full size of the low poo and conditioner are $22 each. The full size of the Wavewaker is only 5z and costs a crazy $26! The full value of the kit is around $70.  So at $30, you are really getting a great value with this kit on sale.

 

First Impressions/Scent

The DevaCurl kit seemed like a good value and an easy, non-intimidating way to begin the wavy/curly hair journey. Everything was in one place, even a satin scarf for at night. I got the box in the mail and was super excited. I immediately opened it up the Low Poo and took a sniff. Yuck! was my instant thought. The scent was heavily floral with some citrus. I do not like floral scents. I imagine some people would LOVE this fragrance, but I am not one of them. I opened the Conditioner, and it smelled similar. Wavemaker? Kind of smelled like a mix of bubble gum and jolly ranchers. I really dislike sweet scents, but I did actually enjoy this more than the shampoo or conditioner. That isn’t to say I liked the scent, but it just wasn’t as awful as the others. The Devascarf seemed like a simple piece of satin that was cheaply made, but I didn’t own anything satin to sleep on so it was still going to be useful. So overall, I wasn’t excited about the scents, but was definitely still excited to begin!

Review After Use

So it is time for me to actually review them now that I’ve gone through all of one product. The product I used up completely was the Low-Poo. The conditioner is now going into a travel container, and I’m continuing to use the Wakemaker. But I feel like using up one product completely justifies a full review of each product.

 

Deva Curl Low Poo Delight

 

I have never used a shampoo that felt like this. It was SO slippery. I knew instantly it had to be glycerin and I was correct. This poo is full of that ingredient. I didn’t mind. In fact, as I was about a third of the bottle I was LOVING this stuff. It felt like it got my hair pretty clean, had some lather, and I liked how it left my hair feeling slippery.

Where it changed with the low poo

On a forum, someone mentioned how much they hadn’t liked the low-poo delight because they had to use so much of it. I had definintely been thinking I had to use a lot, but it was like reading this had been an epiphany. I couldn’t get over it, and every shower since I’ve noticed just how much of this product I have to use to get my hair to the point of feeling all clean and slippery. Hint: it is a lot. Also, I find that this does not spread on my scalp well. If I put it in one section of my hair, that section will be clean, but the surrounding areas will still be dirty. That’s been the most frustrating part. It doesn’t spread and I use a LOT of product. I will say that the suggestions on that same thread were for much more expensive shampoos, so it seemed like the value was similar to what was being recommended. That said, I used this up with still over a third of the conditioner remaining. If you had asked me a month ago, I was planning to repurchase the jumbo size. Now I’m on the hunt for a budget friendly option and I’ve got my eyes on a few things. Would I Repurchase? Only if I can’t find anything better (which I doubt).

The One Condition Delight

My review of this can be summed up in one word: Meh.

That sums up everything from my first impression until today. There is nothing wrong with this conditioner (except the scent). It does a nice job of moisturizing without weighing my hair down. It’s good. But there is nothing earth shatteringly exceptional. Considering the full size is $22 I am 100% convinced that there is a budget friendly option that is better out there. It’s not good, and it’s not bad.

Would I repurchase: No.

 

DevaCurl Wave Maker Touchable Mousse

 

First impression: The texture was thick and sticky for a mousse, and thi is the first non-aerosol mousse I’d used. The first time, I used way too much. My hair looked very product-y and greasy by day two. I wasn’t a fan. I began to alternate this and the Shea Moisture Coconut and Hibiscus Styling Milk (another review for another time) or some days combine them. Both of those methods seemed to help. The recommendations I’ve seen have said to use as a second or third day styler. I’m finding that this is a great way to use the product. My hair needed something stronger for the first day. This leaves no “cast” and my hair needed that to shape my waves. I still have about half of this 3oz bottle left and my hair is down to my chest. A little goes a long way, so I would consider the value to be okay.

Would I repurchase? Yes! but I do think I’m going to try a budget friendly option first since I’m still pretty new to the wavy hair journey. Really though, my hair LOVES this stuff on 2nd and 3rd day hair.

 

DevaScarf

 

This is a bonus item, but it’s one I’m glad to have! I use it to wrap up/plop my hair in the evenings when my hair is 100% dry. Or I can put it onto my pillow. If you already own a satin pillowcase or a satin scarf/wrap then you don’t need this. But it was nice to have included!

Would I repurchase? N/A – this is not available alone. But I would recommend purchasing a satin scarf {link!} pillowcase {link!}, or a bonnet {link!} if you don’t own one. 

 

The Entire Kit Overall

Even though I’ve said that I wouldn’t be jumping for joy to repurchase any of the items, I actually still recommend this kit if you are just starting out your natural (wavy) hair journey. I found it to be a nice way to jump into the world of sulfate/silicone/paraben free products. It has given me a good baseline for everything and wasn’t intimidating at all. The value, when compared to the full  DevaCurl line, is great (especially great when on Final Sale). If you have already dabbled with other lines of sulfate/silicone/paraben free products, then I wouldn’t recommend this. The main benefit of this kit is ease of use. I would not repurchase this kit because you would likely run out of a product at different times.

 

Would I recommend: Yes if you are just beginning and don’t know where to start; No if you have already been using sulfate/silicone/paraben free products.

 

Let me know what you’ve thought of the DevaCurl products for wavy hair. Worth it? Overpriced? Holy Grail? Tell me!

 

With Motivation,

 

Rachel

Sweet and Spicy Pico de Gallo (Whole 30)

Sweet and Spicy Pico de Gallo (Whole 30)

I love salsa. So much. In fact, one of my favorie things in life is chips & salsa. Unfortunately I cannot have corn (meaning no tortilla chips – though the expensive Siete ones are amazing!), so any excuse to eat salsa and I’m sold! This […]

My Grocery List 4th June 2017 + Meal Planning

My Grocery List 4th June 2017 + Meal Planning

Well, it’s been a while since I have posted a grocery list. The truthful reason is that we have been slacking on meal prepping! We went camping two weeks ago, and have people over through the holiday weekend. This meant that meal prepping got lowered […]

Budgeting Utilities + Tips to Lower Utility Bills

Budgeting Utilities + Tips to Lower Utility Bills

There are a few ways that might be helpful when budgeting for utilities. I can tell you upfront that when we began, we took a complete guess based on the square footage of our rental and hoped that it wouldn’t be over that amount. It was. Not by much, but it was enough to raise our budget a bit. This was in winter, and we live in a cold area. A few months later and our bill was half of what it had been. So how do you budget for utilities when the weather changes monthly?

 

Budgeting for Utilities

 

For us, we have a set budget amount that is the high end of costs for the year. This means that we account for the coldest days in winter and the hottest days of summer and set our budget according to those days. We don’t average. In the spring/fall months, when our bills are gloriously low, we apply any extra money towards our “Baby Steps.”  Previously, this meant putting them to debt. Now, this means transferring that money into our 3-6 month emergency fund. It all depends where you are with your personal financial journey.

 

We have our utilities set up to pay the bill in full each month. The money is taken directly out of the bank, and I get a confirmation email when this is done. Then, I put any extra money where it belongs.  For example: If we had $75 budgeted for our Natural Gas, and I received a bill for $50, I would immediately put that money elsewhere. When in Baby Step two, I would go and make a student loan payment for $25. Today, I would make a $25 transfer into our emergency fund.

 

This may seem small, but you want every penny working for you. Even the little payments add up, especially when you are paying off debt. Every payment causes less interest to accrue. This is why you want to make those payments immediately when budgeting utilities. The key is to put the money where it belongs immediately. If you don’t do this, it’s easy to end up with an “extra” $20 to spend on unnecessary things. You don’t want that. You want to tell your money where it belongs and make it work towards your goals.

 

Just to be clear, this isn’t the only way to budget utilities, just the way that we choose to and what has worked well for us. Some utility companies allow you to average out the costs, but I like being the one in control of what is budgeted. Learning to adjust can take some time.

Lowering Your Utility Bill

 

Also, some tips for lowering your utility bill (these might not be groundbreaking, but every little bit helps!)

 

These tips are excellent for the environment no matter where you stand financially!

  • Open your windows and turn off the lights
  • Remember to make sure your outdoor lights are off too!
  • Turn off your sink when you brush your teeth
  • Use the “Sleep Timer” on your TV – we always fall asleep to the tv, but this keeps the electricity waste to a much smaller amount!
  • Unplug things when you aren’t using them – I don’t do this with anything that has a clock on it because that’s a huge pain, but things like phone chargers, hair tools, electric tea kettles) are easy fixes.
  • Brush your teeth in the shower  – some people may not like the warm water fyi
  • Shower warm, not hot.
  • Wash laundry on cold water
  • Hang dry clothes.
  • Open windows on opposite sides of the house to create a crossbreeze. Opening one window might not do much, but once you get that breeze in, it’s great!
  • Go natural with your hair – no heat tools=no electricity used.

With Motivation,

Rachel

My Hair Background Story

My Hair Background Story

I figured it would be beneficial to talk about my hair background prior to my natural hair journey. I first straightened my hair in 7th grade and was hooked. Suddenly, my hair was smooth and not frizzy! I got hooked. Thankfully I was always great […]