Every Day, a New Hair Adventure

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In early April, I stumbled upon some articles on the internet about washing one’s hair without shampoo. Many people use baking soda and apple cider vinegar (abbreviated ACV), but I also found some sites discussing the hazards of that — the extreme pH differences can hurt the hair. Then I found this site about washing with water only and it intrigued me. It made sense to allow one’s natural oils to condition the hair, rather than stripping it with shampoo and then adding the oils back in, artificially, with conditioner. So, let me tell you the end result of this experiment!

I love my hair! As many of you know, I enjoy being “a natural woman,” and this new hair regime suits me. It might not suit everyone, but for many, I’d say it’s worth a try. If you like perfectly-coifed hair, this might not be for you, because I do find that sometimes my hair behaves unexpectedly! Water-only washing is especially recommended for naturally curly hair, but I don’t actually have curl, just cowlicks — and sometimes, it gets pretty licky!

best shampooThere is an initial oily stage that everyone has to go through. There are webpages out there that give hints on how to get through this stage gracefully. Since I was already washing only every second day and using a great tea-tree and peppermint-oil shampoo, I found that it did not take very long to get through this stage (3 weeks perhaps). I put my hair up lots and I don’t think people noticed very much.

After that, I went through a strange waxy stage, where I felt like I had helmet-head. Other women have commented on this on the internet, too. My hair was ridiculously thick and felt like I had something like styling wax in it. All over. Not good. I mean, it looked fine, but I could have made dreadlocks so easily. A quick google found the answer — lemon-juice rinse or “shampoo” with an egg. I did both, and it worked beautifully. Actually, on those super-hot days, I put lemon and water in a spray bottle and squirted my head from time to time… so the lemon spray kept me cool AND gave me highlights!

So, how is my hair different? The pro’s: it’s thicker, feels really healthy and has way more body than it used to. As mentioned, it has more “curl” than ever, which is sometimes frustrating, but should not be surprising, since my hair always has been easy to curl. The con’s: My hair gets staticky sometimes for no apparent reason. I can usually get it to stay down by dampening it. Speaking of wet, when I blow-dry it, sometimes I can’t tell if it’s dry or not. It feels thick, so I think it’s wet, but it isn’t. All things considered, I would definitely not go back to the normal way of washing and conditioning! I am intrigued by soap nuts, so I may try them some day, but I have no idea where to buy them.

howtowraphairbrushNow, here’s a pro-tip if you decide to try this: when your hair feels (or looks) a bit oily but you don’t want to wash it (or don’t have time), wrap cotton yarn around your hair brush and use that. This was key to my success! Some people recommend using a boar hair brush to absorb and distribute the oils throughout the hair, but I didn’t like it. The bristles are too bendy for me, and I found that cotton absorbed the oil fabulously and I could replace it whenever I wanted so my brush never got icky. I use the same cotton yarn that people use to make knitted wash cloths — you can buy it in lots of places — and I just wrap it around the brush, through the bristles (see photo at right).

This page says that the more you use shampoo, the more you need it, because it strips the natural oils so much, your scalp produces that much more. This makes so much sense to me! And this reinforces something else I recently realized: hair dye makes your hair go grey faster, therefore you need to buy more of it and are soon hooked! Grey hair is caused by a build up of hydrogen peroxide at the root, and what’s the main ingredient in most hair dye? Hydrogen peroxide. Have a look at this article. I guess it isn’t surprising! Hair colour, like so many things in this world, is meant to cover up a problem, not prevent it. So, let’s not be trusting the fashion industry, drug stores, or anything commercial, when it comes to health or beauty advice!!

If you are interested in trying the water-only method, google it, or try this site. And be prepared to give it a good, hearty try — not just a week or two. I think 2 months is needed to really let your scalp settle. You may even want to start in fall (how about now? 🙂 ) — summer is perhaps NOT the best time, as the heat can make the oily stage worse. Also, you need to use hot water, and on a hot day, who wants a HOT shower?

water-only washed hairI have my really good shampoo on standby if I get really dirty or dusty — my absolute favourite is in the photo near the beginning of this post. And remember, it’s not that I don’t wash my hair! It’s just that I don’t use detergent. I just use water!

What Me, Wear Make-up?

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I know I’m not like everyone else — okay, no one is. Let me explain. I voluntarily quit a very good job to start my own business and make no money. Once the business started making money, I decreased my business activity and took on a new job — and had to move way up North, to a village of 1,000 people, over 1400 km (nearly 900 miles) from the nearest Starbucks. Oh, unless there’s one in Yellowknife — then it’s only 630 km (390 miles). Nevermind Starbucks — I am 430 km (270 miles) from the nearest clothing store, shoe store, or place where one could buy make-up (in Hay River, NWT).

my footwearBut I don’t mind, because:
A: I don’t buy clothes unless I really need them, because I’ve worn out what I’ve got — it might be time for new skidoo boots this year, and
B: I’ll show you my shoe collection at right (not all of them, mind you… just the ones I wear 95% of the time), and
C: I don’t wear make-up. I mean I’ve worn mascara about 4 times in the last 4 years.

So, like I said, I’m not like everyone else. I am not a major hippie or tree-hugger — okay, ya, I hug trees — I just don’t like a lot of girlie things. I object to make-up primarily on the grounds that women are beautiful without it.

I may, however, be rethinking my views on make-up slightly. Here’s my thinking.

Everyone ages. You know who suffers the most, in some ways? Hollywood stars. I feel kind of sorry for them, in particular when it comes to aging. They are immortalized in their youth — 99% of them — when they are at their prime, young, beautiful, fit and lovely. Then, they age. But everyone who watches re-runs, or their favourite movies over and over again, is shocked to see them age. They don’t look anything like they should — like the young and pretty image we all have burned on our corneas! Admit it, you have images of the first James Kirk, ahem, William Shatner, burned on your corneas, don’t you? (Okay, maybe it’s just me.) But look at him now!? Gads.


So, it’s not easy being green, or being famous and getting older. But at least women have make-up to turn to. I mean, Nichelle Nichols has undergone the same time frame of aging, and look at her.


Okay, maybe it’s an unfair comparison! In any case, women, perhaps, have decided to take matters into their own hands and do what they can, using nature, originally, to enhance their beauty. I think some of the first make-up was invented by the ancient Egyptians, was it not? Certainly black eyeliner was!

egyptian eyeliner

So, I stumbled on a website,, because the geek part drew me in (that’s probably why I even stumbled on it, what with Google controlling what I see…). “What’s geeky about make-up?” I thought. Well, the girls who are featured (or perhaps own it, run it, whatever) are really into make-up — for effect (no major objections here), for artistic expression (which I approve of), and for the fun of it, too, (which I wholeheartedly approve of). So, hmm. Make-up might not be so bad after all. In particular when it uses natural, non-animal harming ingredients. I mean, putting make-up into bunnies’ eyes is horrible by anyone’s standards.

Maybe I’m not so different at all! I just had a phase of a make-up free life… maybe I’ll play around with it a little in the future. Now if only there was a store where I could buy some! 😛

What do you think? Okay, maybe a little extreme for me.. :)
What do you think? Okay, maybe a little extreme for me.. 🙂

P.S. Men, there are things you can do, too — that we can all do, I think. Try not to be chronically overtired. Drink plenty of water. Try not to rub your face unnecessarily. Eat living, non-processed food as much as possible. Get enough sleep (did I mention that already?) 🙂

Related posts:

See Your Beauty
The Saga of the Hair Catastrophe
Balancing Act

The 7 Best Things I Learned from Star Trek

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I know “resistance is futile” when it comes to a borg invasion, but what else has that amazing world of Star Trek taught me? Here’s my take on the top 7 life lessons from Star Trek.

1. My friends don’t have to be similar to me. Look at Kirk and Spock. They are almost total opposites — about the only thing they have in common is their gender — and they are not only great friends but also work amazingly well together.

2. IDIC — Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combination. This is a Vulcan principle, and it teaches that the universe is beautifully diverse, splendidly complex and all those differences are to be celebrated.

3. Be willing to take a stand — even die for — your principles. Starting with Kirk, all the Captains of Star Trek have taught us this (plus many other characters). They have all demonstrated this time and time again.

4. On the other hand, cheat death as many times as possible. As with hypothermia, you aren’t dead until you are warm and dead. (You can be very cold and seem totally dead, but doctors can still warm you up and bring you back… up to a point.) Life might look very bleak, but you can still side-step death at the last split-second — often by exploding something, but don’t necessarily live by that last part. Avoid fatalistic thinking and keep looking for a way.

from Thefreckleycoops on Tumblr5. Keep your head on in a crisis. You don’t see Scotty panicking and running around with “kermit hands” (think of how Kermit the Frog flails his hands when he is excited). Be prepared, know what you are doing and be creative in your problem solving, even under pressure!

6. Don’t be so concerned about honour. Worf taught me that one, initially, as an example of what not to do. By inference, this extends into not being concerned about appearances as well, or about what other people think.

7. Society can function without money. This one may take us a while to figure out — hopefully not because of a World War III — but I think eventually we will stop valuing money and make the transition to a moneyless society. We will all simply do what we enjoy and receive materially what we need or want (within reason).

Thank you, Gene Roddenberry, for sharing your vision of the future with all of us. It’s a good one.

Got other ideas? Add yours in the comments!

See Your Beauty

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beautiful sunset

Have you ever seen a truly breathtaking sunrise? As the sunlight slowly brightens the sky, the sky changes to purple, pink, and orange. The horizon and trees stand out in dark contrast, adding to the magic of the scene. The clouds catch the light and glow in the most intense and phenomenal colours. Sometimes, don’t you just have to sit back, take it all in, and marvel and how lovely our planet is?

I wonder if we were able to soak up that beauty and thoroughly appreciate the awesomeness of those sunrise moments more often, would it change us? Would it help us to appreciate everything around us more and to see our own beauty?

Why is it easier to see beauty in other things than in ourselves? I’m not sure it is actually harder to see our own beauty, I think it’s just how we are looking around us. We don’t examine a sunrise with binoculars, but we do look at ourselves with close-up mirrors, with a critical eye. What if we stepped back and took in the whole view, like we do with gorgeous scenery? What if we became enraptured in the moment? What if we looked at ourselves that way?

Why not give it a try?

Stand a few feet away from a mirror but keep your eyes closed. Go back in time to the most beautiful sunrise or sunset you have ever seen. Try to recall it as vividly as possible. Remember the breeze, the sounds, anything and everything that made the scene amazing. Feel how your expression softens, how your face lightens. Aren’t you in awe of how amazing that sky was? Breathe deeply a few times and dwell there until you feel different — peaceful, amazed, and just… different. Now, s l o w l y open your eyes… Aren’t you beautiful too? Keep the same expression of awe… because you are awesome and beautiful!

You are every bit as lovely as the most beautiful sunset, you just can’t always see it. You can’t always see the sunrise or sunset either — sometimes, because it is cloudy, or because you are so unhappy you just don’t see it. But if you can get yourself out of your head and snap back to the present moment, you can see beauty everywhere. Once you learn to fully appreciate the beauty in the world around you, you can realize the beauty in yourself, too. Even if you only feel a little more beautiful, that’s progress!

I love taking what I know in one area of my life, or using one of my strengths, and applying it to an area I feel less secure. Take the beauty you see around you — that you can readily accept and see as a fact — and remind yourself that you are a part of that beauty, too. The world is an amazing place, and you are a part of it…. so you must be amazing, too.

It is so simple — see the beauty and believe that it applies to you, too. Slow down your pace and look around for the beauty that is everywhere. See it, and let it soak in. Flowers, sunsets, trees, dragonflies… many things are beautiful — each different, but equally beautiful. Is it so hard to believe that you too are beautiful, perfect, unique, just as you are? I hope not. : )

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Note 1: I do a lot more of this sort of introspective blogging on my book’s website So head over to the blog and have a read!

Note 2: Am I lame for skipping the traditional “overview of 2012 blog post” or “what’s your New Year’s Resolution” topic? I don’t think so… I think it’s overdone. 😛

Science Doesn’t Have All the Answers

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I love science. I even have a T-shirt that says “Eat. Sleep. Explore Science.” Mind you, I haven’t worn it in a while, but still, it expresses a certain sentiment.

The other day, I had a revelation. It’s a pretty big shift from that traditional “loving science” paradigm. That revelation is

Science is overanalyzing the one you love.

If you get it, feel free to click on to some other website now, perhaps one of the links to the right. If you don’t immediately get it, let me explain what I mean.

Science is great, but it is a lot of analyzing. It’s all left-brain. I think there are a few scientists out there using both hemispheres, but on the whole, it’s detached, objective and logical. Well, except when scientists get attached to a theory and then ignore evidence to the contrary of that theory, which happens more than we know, I think. But I digress.

The problem with living in the left brain is that we miss all the beauty, the art, the loveliness of the thing we are studying. We can measure the heck out of Mother Earth, and how will that help? I wonder if we could make more of a difference by just loving her?

Any happily married man will tell you — analyzing his wife, especially to her face, is not a good idea. It is not going to help her or their relationship. But loving her, and not focusing on anything besides the things that he likes about her makes all the difference. Could it be the same with Mother Earth?

I think we may already have our answer. If you look at the science that has been done on our planet, most of the time, it doesn’t paint a pretty picture for our future. But when I am actually out on the planet, in the wilderness enjoying myself and loving it — loving the Earth — I can see nothing wrong with it. I don’t see global warming. I don’t see any of the other myriad of problems the scientists say Mother Earth has. Perhaps this is just another example of the Law of Attraction at work, I don’t know. I want to see beauty, I focus on joy, so that’s what I get. Or, maybe I am just putting my head in the sand. But I can’t help but wonder what would happen if we all did it my way, and gave less power to science?

And I’m not saying science is all bad. But if you go looking for problems, you will find them. I look for beauty instead (all right-brainy now, I know)!

Lies We Believe

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Recently, I’ve realized and read some really big truths. Or rather, I’ve realized some really big lies that many of us believe without even realizing it.

1 – The lie: Outside things control us. The full quotation from The Science of Mind by Ernest Holmes says

We have thought that outside things controlled us, when all the time we have had that within which could have changed everything and given us freedom from bondage. – Holmes

Although we may think that our external environment controls what we do or how we live, it simply isn’t true. You never give up your control over your actions and thoughts. In tough times, you can choose to think positively. When someone is rude to you, you can choose to be polite. We have complete, utter sovereignty over our thoughts and therefore our lives.

2 – The lie: Things create more things. You might think, “no, people create things.” That’s not exactly true either. When it comes to creating anything in our lives, attitudes create things. And when I say “things,” I mean physical objects, circumstances, etc. You have probably experienced the frustration of trying to do something and just none of it will go right — your attitude, or thoughts, have made that thing hard to do, or they’ve made you want to do them when it isn’t the right time yet. If you get into an A-type personality mode, you can often push hard to do something that just isn’t needed/ready/the best thing to do. So your attitude creates a difficult time.
But getting back to the idea that attitudes create things, just realize that anything, good or bad, is in your life because you brought it there through a conscious or subconscious attitude and only you can remove it or change it. That is the foundation, but I don’t want to make it sound like it’s just “snap your fingers and voilà, it’s done.” It’s quite a bit of work to start being aware of what you’re thinking and how that’s affecting your life, and then learning to change it!

3 – The lie: Women need make-up. Why? To be attractive, of course. But make no mistake — you don’t attract people by how you look. Society feeds us the lie that women need make-up (and hair products, and skin lotions…) and popular media tries to tell us that our worth is tied to our looks, but that is so wrong! We attract people by who we are. We each have our own way of being, which includes our body language (like how we talk, move, look people in the eye, etc) and personality, but it also includes that “je ne sais quoi” — that special something, a person’s spirit. Sometimes, when you meet someone new, you can just tell you’re going to be friends with them. Or you might get a funny vibe not to trust them. In either case, it doesn’t have much to do with how they look, and we must stop believing the lie that we need to BUY THINGS to change the way we look to be more attractive. It’s just NOT TRUE! Authenticity should guide us instead. [Dove Evolution video]

4 – The lie: Men attract women by what they do. For the most part, men are told they have to do something cool, interesting, money-making, etc, to be successful and attract women. Or that they have to be clever/witty or romantic to say the right thing to get the girl.
Not true. You are not what you do. You attract by who you are. You don’t need a sexy job like race car driver to get the girls! Your attitude/spirit will attract them. Be the kind of person you want to attract — if you want a fun-loving, honest girl, be that. If you want a positive, easy-going partner, be that. Trust me, girls aren’t saying “I want a paramedic boyfriend” or “I want a guy who works at the Ford dealership!” It doesn’t matter what you do, it matters who you are. Think about who you would attract by who you are.

I think that the standard stereotypes are starting to be reversed, too. Men are now much more concerned about how they look, and products are now being pushed on them too (such as shave-gel, cologne, hair products). I’m guessing the products and marketing came first and then men started developing concern for their appearance. And women are now becoming more concerned with what they do, too.

I leave you with this last thought: You are not who you think you are… no one is. With no distractions, when you are truly alone with yourself, who are you? If you have no idea, but wish you did, go away by yourself with no distractions (TV, books, hobbies) and no mirror for 4+ days and I think you’ll find out! I certainly did when I went on my long kayak trip. It was wonderful!

In a Fog

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Have you ever gone through a time in your life when you feel like you are living in a fog? It’s like things around you are distant, not entirely real… not literally hazy, but you aren’t focusing on what’s around you so they don’t seem clear. Maybe it happens early in the morning when you aren’t fully awake yet, or during a very stressful time in your life, which makes trivial things seem, well, trivial!!
Well, I am living in a fog these days – a fog of God’s love! You can laugh, but that’s what I feel like – like I am all bundled up in His love, to the point where circumstantial things around me that happen are not as real as they used to be. Where at any moment, His love is so real, I break into a smile, where I’ve got a continual song in my heart that lifts me up above my surroundings.
The really cool part is that anyone can be where I am – in fact, I believe God is found inside every living thing, and all we need to do it shift our perspective a little! It’s like standing before the most beautiful sunset, with colours and clouds, the ocean, trees – imagine whatever you can for the most perfect scene. And then imagine that you are steadfastly looking at your feet! Whether because you refuse to look up because someone else said “hey, you should look at this!” (i.e. you’re too stubborn) or because you can’t because your neck is stiff (i.e. you’re in a rut), or because you don’t believe the sunset is real… a change in perspective (not looking at your feet) completely changes your view of the world, and the beauty is visible and awesome!
Some things to think about, anyway! I’ll blog again soon about some excitement in my life, too… more love!