I've stopped relaxing my hair for a year and it's been almost a year after the big chop. You would think I know my hair right now and not fall for the obvious hair no go's. But after taking good care of my natural hair, I became a bit lazy the last couple of weeks. So I ended op looking like this. winter natural hair care tips

Thankfully, I've taken good care of my hair, so my hair can deal with a little setback. But I decided to take my mistake and give you guys 7 tips natural hair care tips, especially for these cold and wet winter months.

1. Avoid heat In the first 6 months of my natural hair journey I didn't use any heat on my hair. Not even a blow dryer! But when it got colder outside, it was impossible for me to go out with wet hair, so I used a hairdryer with diffuser. But with my low porosity hair, it takes my hair 12 hours to dry on itself.  And me being impatient, so I bought a hair dryer cap. Well, using this didn't have a good effect on my hair. I used it way too often. So from now on, I use a t-shirt to dry my hair and after this I diffuse on the coldest setting with my blow dryer. For more on hair porosity and elasticity, read this article: http://iammode.com/natural-hair-journey-6-months-update/

2. Deep condition I think deep conditioning is key for healthy winter hair. Sometimes we're in a rush, and deep conditioning is one of the thing that takes a little more time. Instead, I would condition my hair for max 10 min and go on with my life. I also got a new hair mask that didn't do much for my hair. So the other day, I pimped up my Novex hair mask with banana, castor oil and jojoba oil. My hair literally sucked up all the moisture and my curls were poppin'! To give my hair the boost it needs, I left the mask in for 30 minutes, put on a shower cap with a towel. This keeps the moisture and heat in your hair, so your cuticles stay open. For me using heat while deep conditioning is key, with low porosity hair.PicsArt_01-15-05.19.24

3. Use the LOC or LCO method The L stand for leave in, the o for Oil and the C for cream. Some people also use gel instead of oil or cream, depending on their hair type. I personally prefer the LOC method and add gel at the end. Also, I add most of my products under the shower. Water is still the best moisturizer, so I make sure that my hair is soaking wet when applying the products. The oil is used to seal the moisture and the cream for extra moisture or styling. My hair always shrinks up a lot, so I use the banding method to stretch my hair.

5. Give some extra love to your ends! This point is important, definitely when you don't wear your hair up. Your hair will rub against your collar or scarf, which can cause breakage.When your ends are moisturized, they'll break less easy. Tip: when you wash your hair with shampoo, add conditioner to your ends. And adding oil or cream to your ends will also help.

6. Know your ingredients Some ingredients can really cause your hair to dry out. Sulfates in shampoo strip your hair from product build up, but also from your natural oils.  I would recommend not to use  shampoo's  with sulfates but only when you stop using products that cause build up. These products clog up your pores and cause your hair to feel dry. This is the case with silicons and mineral oils. diy hair mask

7. Detangle with care Detangeling can be a pain in the *bleep* sometimes, but not when you handle with care and patience. This is the one thing I really take my time doing. Thankfully, it's easy for me when I have conditioner or a hair mask in my hair. Never detangle your hair when it's dry. Or at least, don't use a comb or brush. Finger detangling is the softest way to detangle your tresses. Honestly, I start with finger detangle, then I go in with a wide tooth comb and at the end I use my denam brush, for extra definition. Always start at the ends, working up. By being to rough detangling, can cause real breakage! So show your crown extra love during the detangling process.  PicsArt_01-15-05.42.01

These are my most important natural hair care tips. When I take care of my hair like this, I can stretch my wash & go's to 4 and sometimes 5 days! What do you guys do to protect your hair during the winter?

I love spending my time browsing Insta(too much if you ask me). The  other day I found a real cool post about the campaign #makeyourmark by Missguided. You might know the brand if you shop online frequently (guilty as charged). I personally like this brand, they're always on trend and affordable. And then I came across their latest campaign! A-ma-zing! The campaign is on trend with the  #makeyourmark and #keeponbeingyou phrases. This campaigns puts different types of women in the spotlight. Missguided already stopped photoshopping stretchmarks from their models. With this campaign they show a different kind of beauty than the standard. With the catchphrases 'keep on being you' they set the tone: you're beautiful as you are and own it! Every 'Missguided Babe' tells about what makes her unique and gives them confidence.

tinar_for_missguided_make_your_mark_canpaignI really enjoyed watching the different clips. It's refreshing to see a different type of woman be the role model that often doesn't meet our society's beauty standards. Women with different bodies, stretchmarks, cellulite, big breasts, freckles you name it. And they all show how comfortable they are with themselves and honestly, that's really beautiful to watch.   I love  diversity and the beautiful thing about this campaign is that they really show different types of women. Not only by their looks, but also their style, profession and interests. I love it! I don't have anything against the Victoria's Secret type models with the so called perfect figure, but I do find it important that it's not the only beauty standard. So two thumbs up Missguided! What do you guys think of the campaign?

Clip 1: Make your mark

Tinar Dandajena, the curvy model on a mission to teach others to love their own body as much she does her own.

Watch all the #makeyourmark campaign here 

I'm back with another Natural Hair Journey post! Everything is still going well and my hair has never been so healthy. But with healthy curly hair, also comes shrinkage. They say that the healthier the hair, the more shrinkage. But I think it's a combination of different factors, because it also depends on your hair type. But I do have shrinkage. I didn't really mind, but I don't have a model cut in my hair, so I really don't like how my natural hair dries up with shrinkage. I do use braid outs as a way to stretch my hair, but it's time consuming, so I don't feel like doing this all the time. But then I came across the banding method, and I kid you not, this is my go to hairstyle right now! It's so easy, not damaging for your natural hair and you have 'longer' hair overnight. The only thing you need are hairbands ( I use 4 to 8, but this depends on your hair length ofcourse). The longer your hair, the more you will need. I do the banding method on a dry wash  and go. You can also do it wet hair, but you will have less definition. I really hope this clip on the banding method on type 3c/4 hair is helpfull. It's in Dutch, but it really explains itself. Enjoy!

Monday the 28th of August  I AM Mode visited the African Fashion Designer Expo in the World Fashion Centre in Amsterdam. During this expo designers from different countries in Africa showed their designs. The space was huge, but sadly not all the designers could make it. But the ones that were present, presented beautiful pieces.    African Fashion Designers Expo

I arrived just in time for the fashion show of 3 designers. I really liked the first denim pieces decorated with African print. Sharon, the second designer, included bridal dresses in her fashion show. Gorgeous! Fun fact: I once modelled for her and her webshop. For pictures and more of her designs: http://www.be-first.nl/  Sharon African Fashion Designers Expo

And  last but not least the Ghanaian designer Maunge showed his gorgeous accessories in the catwalk. He has the most fabulous handmade shoes and bags. And all made from real leather. Check out his Instagram account for more of his fabulous designs! Muange African Fashion Designers Expo

It was a nice fashion event but I wish it was better promoted. ain contrary to other "African" fashion events, this was organised by Africans for African designers. I hope for another event with more visitors and the same talent!

Hi guys! I'm back after 3 months not logging my natural hair journey.  m'n natural hair journey . I've been super busy with my new job, but still happy with my hair. In my last blog so told you guys about why I regretted the big chop.  But to be honest, my hair grows very quickly. It's getting to an awkward stage, where my hair is too short for twists etc. but too long for the edgy hairdos. Its long enough for braid outs, but I think this hairstyle looks better on longer hair. So for noe my go to hairstyle are wash and go's.

Dulce iammode natural hair

Washing and co-washing

I have a strict hair regimen. I wash my hair with a cleansing shampoo once a week. This is also deep condition day.  When I'm massaging my scalp under the shower, I do this upside down to stimulate hair growth. The other days I simply co-wash my hair. I do this every 2-3 days, depending on how dry my hair is. I use the Andrelon kokos boost conditioner. CG and budget proof! cg friendly natural hair products

LCO VS LOC

I've switched from the LOC to the LOC method. I moisturize my hair while still in the shower and when my hair is soaking wet.

(L)eave in: Kinky Curly Knot Today (C)ream: Curl Enhancing Smoothie by Shea Moisture (O)il: Jojoba Oil. I finish the look with Eco Styler Argan Gel, to hold my curls. I rake the products through my hair with my fingers and this way I also detangle part of my hair. When I'm done, I go through my hair with a Denman Brush for extra definition.dulce iammode natural hair tips

Hairgrowth from the inside

And that's it for now on my hair regimen. I drink a lot of water during the day, I take extra vitamins and eat as diverse as possible to make sure my hair gets nutrition from the inside aswell. Next month there will be a new update + product review!

So in my last post, I told you guys I was ready for my 'big chop.' I was done with my darling braid outs and I was ready to see my curls in their full journey. I've been visiting the same hairdresser for almost 10 years. Since I haven't seen him during my 8 months of transitioning I thought it might be nice to do my 'big chop' at his salon. I was expecting to cry when my hairdresser would cut off my long relaxed tresses. And I wouldn't have any length to do my hairstyle to go: the braid out. But most important; a high bun. 

But this went a whole lot different than I expected. His reaction to me cutting all my relaxed ends, wasn't nice. He told me it would be better for me to transition for another year. Thank God I brought my Curly Girl Lana with me so she could help me deal with all of this unpredicted drama. He started to cut my hair. I saw hair everywhere, but was still feeling ok. He didn't want to cut all the ends of, but I thought my hair looked horrible like this. So he cut a bit more. Sprayed some product in my hair, and was like done. I've gotten to know my hair very well in the past eight months. What kind of products to use, my texture...But I was left with a dry, brittle, frizzy mess. I was happy that I brought my own gel and Bobby pins to quick fix this disaster. I couldn't wait to get home and give my natural hair the treatment it truly deserved.

After I used my own products, I felt my fabulous curls popping up. After I did my hair, I was happy with my reflection in the mirror. Ofcourse I still have to get used to my short hair, but as long as my hair looks good, we good.

I'll continue my Natural Hair Journey. Healthy and long hair are my goals. I still follow the Curly Girl method and it works great for me. I've measured my hair and it's about 10 centimeters. The next Natural Hair Journey update I will review some products I'm using and ofcourse my tips & tricks!

Hi, my name is Dulce and I'm a product junkie.

When I just started with my Natural Hair Journey, I was trying to find the right products for my hair. In December I started with the Curly Girl Method, and therefore started buying new products. First I bought the Black Beauty Box. After that I bought a couple of full sizes and shampoo and conditioner of Curls. After this I also got the Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie because I read so much great reviews.

Hair porosity And then came the day that I my hair just felt disgusting. Brittle dry, and I had no clue what was going on. I did one thing differently; I used coconut oil to seal my leave in conditioner instead of pumpkin oil. Apparently my hair cant deal with it. These 6 months I thought I had high porosity, but instead I just found out I have low porosity hair. Summary: my hair cuticles lay flat, so moisture doesn't leave or enter my hair easily. You can test your porosity by using the test shown below. Or you can spray some water on your clean hair. Does the water pearl up? Then it's very likely you have low porosity. If your hair sucks up the water immediately, you most likely have high porosity hair.

Hair Elasticity Also my hair elasticity was pretty much non existent, so I had to tweak my hair regimen. My hair had a protein overload, which can cause hair damage. So what to do? Yups, buying new products ofcourse. You can easily test your hair elasticity. Take a shedded wet hair and stretch it between your fingers. Does it stretch endlessky before its snaps? Your hair is over moisturized and could use some protein. Does your jair snap immediatly or very fast? Than your hair is craving for hydration and is it best to lay low on the protein.

When I checked my vanity space in my room I laughed. I could nearly start my own hair shop! But now my 'hair shop' is more balanced out. On he one side moisturizing products without protein and on the other side products with protein. This way I can change up my regimen at any given moment and give my hair what it needs.

Natural Hair Journey tips - Start with finding out your hair porosity. This can help when you're shopping for products and reduces the chance of buying the wrong products.

- Also check your hair elasticity. Do you need more protein or moisture? Comes in handy when yo're buying products.

- I would definetly recommend the Curly Girl Method. No sulfates, silicones or drying alcohols for this lady!

- Make sure you have an hair regimen for yourself. What are your wash days? How often do you co- wash? And how do you care for your hair on a daily basis?

For me these are musthave products: A good shampoo Conditioner Hair Mask Leave In conditioner Oil Optional: hair cream Gel

Product Reviews I've added some more products to my hair regimen because I had a protein overload. I've purchased the leave in of Kinky Curly, a condtioner out the low porosity line from Shea Moisture. I didn't really tweak the rest of my products because those don't or barily contain protein.

 -Leave in Kinky Curly: I love this product, I don't need much of it and it makes detangling my hair a lot easier. -Shea Moisture curl enhancing smootie: also a great product, but I have to use a little because of the protein. It's also a heavy product, but my curls love them. They're more defined. -Shea Moisture Low porosity Conditioner: I don't like this product too much. Yes it does moisturize your hair, but it doesn't add any slip so I can easily detangle my hair. It does give a fresh and tingeling sensation, but I won't be buying this conditioner anymore. -Shea Moisture Manuka Honey Hydration Masque: this mask recieves a 10 out of 10! I use it every week for 30 minutes and as a result I have super soft hair. Also a big plus; I can easily detangle my hair.

To big chop or not... This month I'm more obsessed with my curls and the 'big chop' than ever. My goal is to keep transitioning for a year to gain more length, but Inhav emy doubts if I'll have enough patience for that. My new growth is around 10 centimeters. Below a picture of my length goal. But I also saw a lady rocking her short fro and I really loved that. But I know me. I'll be walking around for 3 days feeling all fabulous, and after tht I will miss my length and play with my wigs and extensions. So just a little bit more patience!

As you could read before, I've stopped with relaxing my hair and started my natural hair journey. I've been reading up on the topic and ofcourse experiencing a lot of new things. In my last natural hair journey update, I told you guys that my hair was feeling dry and that I would switch products. I'm sorry guys, the video only comes in Dutch! But you can keep on reading how my natural hair journey has gone in the last 2 months.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4T14gkA667U

In December I ordered the Black Beauty Box, the first beauty box in the Netherlands, designed for the black beauties here, with different products and coupons. iammode black beauty box

I'm happy with the products that were in there, especially the ones by Curls. I've been using these for over a month now, and I'm really satisfied. I've also started the Curly Girls method, which shortly means I only use products without silicons and sulfates. The products of Curls are all clean, so next to the Blueberry Bliss Leave In conditioner,Blueberry Bliss Curl Control Paste, Godess Curls Botanical Gelle, Champagne & Caviar Curl Elixer which I all received in the Black Beauty Box, I also added more to my collection. I bought the Blueberry Bliss Reparative Hairwash, Creamy Curl Cleanser and the Coconut Curlada Conditioner. I loved all of these, except for the Coconut Curlada Conditioner. 

Hair Porosity I expected transitioning to be much harder than it is right now. I'm not saying I never was tempted to Big Chop already but that's another story. I read stories of women who were dealing with breakage, especially at the demarcation line( where the new growth meets the relaxed hair). Moisture is key to prevent breakage. It's also important to know your hair porosity. And your hair elasticity. So you know what kind of products your hair needs and to keep the balance between moisture and protein perfect.

The upcoming month I'll be making more texture shots. I'm not sure what curl type I have. It's hard to say with the relaxed ends weighing the curls down. But my focus is healthy hair. My new growth feels healthy and soft, and that's all that counts!iammode natural hair journey 5 months update

Hair growth tips It's very important that you have a hair regimen that works for you and your hair. I wash my hair once a week and I co-wash it once a week. I use a lot of products in my hair and I still massage my scalp with warm oil, so it's important to keep that clean. Your hair and scalp need a breather too! The scalp massages really help to stimulate growth I think. I do these upside down, so that blood runs to my head and to stimulate the hair follicles.hair growth 2 monthsLeft: 5 months post relaxer. Right: 3 months post relaxer. I've marked the length 2 times, because the shrinkage is real!

Cut dead ends I also cut my dead ends on the regular. Not all of my relaxed ends are damaged, so I only have to cut little bits at a time. This way I prevent the dead ends from splitting up and damaging my healthy hair. This is really addictive by the way.🙈natural hair journey iammodeShrinkage As you can see on the pictures, I do have shrinkage. My hair is already too short for me, I'm not ready for a TWA. iammode natural hair journey 5 months update

LOC method  I use the Leave in, oil en cream/gel method ( LOC/LCO/LOG). I use the leave in conditioner first. After that I seal it in with an oil. After that I use a curl cream or gel. I do this every time I wash my hair. This makes sure the moisture stay locked in my tresses.iammode natural hair journey

The upcoming month I'll be testing new products and listening to what my hair has tom say. So see you next month, at my 6 months update!

Last week Amsterdam Fashion Week took place. As usual a lot of Dutch design talent showed their skills on the runway. And ofcourse I AM Mode was there. We went to see the show of Said Mahrouf, one of our favorite designers during Amsterdam Fashion week.

As a fashionista it's very important to look a bit fabulous and fashionable at these event( a memo sweatpants loving Dutchies apperantely have missed). This dress is a bit closer to my budget than the real deal. I fell in love with the last collection of Dolce & Gabbana, which was filled with floral prints, and this beauty reminded me of that. Since I moved, I've got rid of a lot of my clothes. I made a deal that I can only buy stuff that really add something new to my fashion collection. And this beauty by Topshop is a great addition! It was love at first sight. A little bit too cold for the winter edition of Amsterdam Fashion Week, but an eye catcher nontheless. 

I combined the dress with my L'enfant Terrible pumps. So no sore feet! The lippie bag is a souvenir that I got from one of my besties when she visited Miami.

We enjoyed the show and ofcourse also watching the public in their fashion creations. So what do you think omy look? Yay or nay? Be inspired! OOTD Dulce iammode fashionweek

Last weekend we were at the 26th edition of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Amsterdam. And if you go to the fashion event of the year, you make sure you're present at the show of Said Mahrouf. On Friday Mahrouf presented his latest collection 'Lines and Panels' to the general public. I'm quite a fan of the Dutch-Moroccan designer. Again he has reached a high level in fashion world.

This time Mahrouf was inspired by lines, panels and base colors. There is a golden accent in the whole collection that emerges in several pieces. The supple and shiny fabrics like silk lame and many other kind of silk, layering, asymmetry and trains in his designs are all a feast for the eyes. The silhouettes created by the draperies that flatter the body, are both elegant and extremely feminine. In various pieces from the collection, you see that Mahrouf playes with lines and asymmetry emerges. In this collection  you can also see  the ethnic roots of the designer, which is especially beautiful, elegant and unique as a Mahrouf item is. Way to go, Said!

About the designer Said Mahrouf born in Asilah, Morocco, and raised in Amsterdam. He graduated from the Gerrit Rietveld Academy in Amsterdam and then went to the Pratt Institute in New York. At first he was focused on costume designing, but its focus has shifted over the years more and more into fashion designing. Mahrouf started a label under his own name and took thus participate in the Festimode-Casablanca Fashion Week 2007. Since his collection was spotted by the then director of the Paris Prêt-à-Porter Salon who invited him to his spring / summer collection 2009 present in Paris. Eventually followed many more shows. So Mahrouf debuted in 2012 at the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Amsterdam.

Browse through our favorite top 10 pieces of this collection and see for yourself!

Said Mahrouf has several stores in Morocco where you can also view pieces of his previous collections. So if you are planning a trip to Tangier, Casablanca or Marrakesh, then a visit to his shop is a must do! Do you want a Mahrouf item? Prices vary and are available on request.

SAID MAHROUF CATWALK FASHION SHOW FW17

SAID MAHROUF CATWALK FASHION SHOW FW17

SAID MAHROUF CATWALK FASHION SHOW FW17

SAID MAHROUF CATWALK FASHION SHOW FW17

SAID MAHROUF CATWALK FASHION SHOW FW17

SAID MAHROUF CATWALK FASHION SHOW FW17

SAID MAHROUF CATWALK FASHION SHOW FW17

SAID MAHROUF CATWALK FASHION SHOW FW17

SAID MAHROUF CATWALK FASHION SHOW FW17

SAID MAHROUF CATWALK FASHION SHOW FW17

SAID MAHROUF CATWALK FASHION SHOW FW17

SAID MAHROUF CATWALK FASHION SHOW FW17

SAID MAHROUF CATWALK FASHION SHOW FW17

SAID MAHROUF CATWALK FASHION SHOW FW17

SAID MAHROUF CATWALK FASHION SHOW FW17

SAID MAHROUF CATWALK FASHION SHOW FW17

SAID MAHROUF CATWALK FASHION SHOW FW17

SAID MAHROUF CATWALK FASHION SHOW FW17

SAID MAHROUF CATWALK FASHION SHOW FW17

SAID MAHROUF CATWALK FASHION SHOW FW17