Merkaba Natural Hair Grow-Out Challenge

When the weather gets warmer, I feel like it’s always the perfect time for me to do a grow out challenge – I don’t like to protective style proactively and the winter is so dry and cold that I don’t really concentrate on wearing my hair out (it’s in a bun most of the time). Then, the other day I visited the BMvmnt Studio in New York (Buti’s new studio) and FINALLY got some Golden Ratio Merkaba, as I hadn’t felt like ordering it.

MERKABA - Metabolic Booster

What’s Merkaba?

Merkaba is an organic blend of matcha green tea, ginger, and cayenne pepper, and is marketed as an energy and metabolic booster. It is also said to help increase mental clarity and focus. Honestly, it pretty much tastes like spicy dirt but it doesn’t bother me.

But while I’m taking this supplement for health, I started thinking about the ingredients and how they are related to hair. Matcha, ginger, and cayenne are all said to increase hair growth when applied topically or internally, and this formula is loaded with all three. I also personally prefer to nourish my hair from the inside out, especially when we’re talking about pastes or things that can cause irritation to the skin (Have you ever gotten cayenne in your eye? I have, and it’s not pretty.)

MERKABA - Metabolic Booster

Each box comes with 30 servings, so I am incorporating Merkaba into my routine each morning and drink a packet once a day. After 30 days (or around 20 because of shipping), I will assess whether I want to keep taking it for health and gauge an effectiveness regarding hair growth. At $42 a box, it’s not exactly cheap.

I was going to break out my old length check tank top to measure growth, but surprise (!), my hair is already past the last line. For reference, this is the one I have.

Image result for length check tank

I don’t think I’m going to get another one because measuring length in inches and being so obsessed with growth isn’t really my thing anymore. I moreso want to eyeball length and thickness. I also take Futurebiotics Hair, Skin, and Nails vitamin and the Camille Rose Green supplement, but I’ve taken them for months and should be able to see if the Merkaba is making a difference.

I’ll be providing updates on my social media, so if you’re interested, be sure to follow me on Twitter @ellevate108 and join my beauty group on Facebook, Beauty in Glitterland. This should be fun – and spicy!

xoxo

August 2017 NATURAL HAIR CHALLENGE: Protect Ya Ends!

If you’ve been following me for awhile, you know that I believe in protecting your ends to retain length. Usually I seal my hair with some type of oil, but today I thought of something different: What if I sealed my ends with a silicone serum (heat protectant)? Previously I had been skeptical to try this because I feared silicone build-up, but my cleansing conditioner (DevaCurl Decadence No Poo) removes silicones just fine!

So for the next month, I am going to use a silicone serum when I style my wash and go on my ends. Currently, I am using Form Beauty Protect because the ingredients – argan oil is the fourth ingredient (after a ton of cones of course). What am I looking for? Any noticeable differences in hair appearance and thickness – thicker ends perhaps, or a decrease in single strand knots and split ends. Check out this video for more information:

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Why I Started Taking Viviscal Again After Trying Other Hair Vitamins

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I began taking Viviscal in July 2011 and recorded much of my journey on my YouTube channel. It quickly became my favorite vitamin after trying several different formulas, such as MaxiHair and the now defunct Nioxin vitamins (I took Nioxin until it was no longer available, but before Viviscal, it was my favorite), and with good reason. When I did my length check videos, I always saw great progress with my hair and also had little shedding (pic below shows my length at 2 years and 4 months natural, I was using Viviscal at the time) I had my monthly supply on auto-order on Amazon, and heck, I was even in their infomercial, which was pretty cool.

But then, they changed the formula and some of the verbiage on the packaging, and it became more difficult to determine if I was getting authentic product. There were two different types of packaging I had seen across the web with different ingredients, and I even heard of unauthorized sellers distributing fake product. The final nail in the coffin was when the vendor I ordered from on Amazon stopped selling it, and I couldn’t find a trustworthy site for a good deal. I bid Viviscal goodbye and set out to find a vitamin I was happy with that I could buy on the ground and the ingredients wouldn’t keep changing.

Don’t get me wrong – I don’t believe that hair vitamins make your hair grow 50 inches a year and I don’t think they are necessary for a healthy hair journey. First and foremost, I think that we should focus on internal nutrition and wellness, which support healthy hair, skin, and nails. But I do think they are nice to have since we aren’t able to really measure how much vitamin B we’re getting daily through the food we eat. Furthermore, I do notice decreased shedding when I take certain vitamins regardless of my diet and how often I’m detangling, which is reassuring to see in the shower.

Viviscal Length Check

Anyway, back to the story. I tried a couple of other vitamins, including ManeChoice (which caused me to break out something awful) and Nature’s Bounty Extra Strength Hair, Skin, and Nails, which was pretty good but was often sold out at CVS because it’s on sale all the time. But without even realizing it, all of these vitamins were missing something that is incredibly important to hair and also my personal health – iron. I’ve been anemic since as long as I can remember, and although I periodically took iron with my hair vitamin, I felt like I was taking so many pills and taking iron alone (and on an empty stomach) made me feel ill. Honestly, I can’t even remember the last time I bought iron pills because they get on my nerves.

Viviscal contains 10mg (56% of the recommended daily value) per pill, and the initial recommended dosage is two pills a day. I went to Ulta and re-examined the ingredients, saw that, and thought, “Fine. Might as well!” One of the other benefits I get from taking Viviscal is that it doesn’t make me sick at all; I can take it in the morning on an empty stomach and not have to worry about feeling nauseated later in the day or having heartburn from too much iron. As an added bonus, I was probably a week and a half into taking Viviscal again (note, I was still taking biotin and hadn’t gone that long without taking any kind of vitamin), I detangled my hair after having it in a bun for around five days, which can often equal tangle city, and I shed a lot less hair – it was even noticeable with each section that I did. Win!

So, just like that, Viviscal is back in my regimen, and hair was only a small part of the equation. I hope they don’t change the ingredients again…

Have you ever had a favorite in your regimen that you went back to after trying other things?

**This article also appears on Black Girl with Long Hair.

**Disclaimer: This content is not sponsored and Viviscal did not provide me with any compensation or free products for writing this article.