Back on the Silicones

Back on the silicones

I have been silicone free since the Christmas before last when I was in LA and I picked up a 907ml bottle of Tresemme’s naturals nourishing moisture conditioner.

Since then I have been using it for condition washes (co-washing), pre-shampooing (pre-poos), and post protein treatments.  Basically, nigh on everything; I’ve even mixed it up as a leave-in.

The range (it includes vibrantly smooth) has been a stable companion amongst the faddy and feckless products I have purchased.  And I only picked it up in Ralph’s on a whim because it was cheap (I had forgotten to fly with my Kera Care).

But I’ve recently got to a point where my hair was just tangly, especially the roots and I felt my only options were to comb or use a silicone conditioner.  I didn’t want to comb.  I’m militant with the finger detangling.  So I reached for a silicone conditioner.

I co-washed using Tresemme’s Keratin Smooth followed by Avon’s Naturals Conditioning Balm and I sealed with a homemade oil mix.

I wore 8 plaits and or a head scarf for the rest of the week and I sprayed with aloe vera juice when I felt the moisture levels dropping.

The take down came on Saturday (10 days post wash) and it was disappointing.

My hair was dry and stiff and under-stretched.

This is the updo I managed.


I was looking forward to giving the hair a wash.  I was eager to get the coat of silicone out of my hair and forget my fall into temptation.  Whilst I had welcomed the slip and detangling ease the products had offered now I was convinced the silicones had formed an impenetrable defence line to keep the moisture out.  I had to mobilize my attack and get my afro moving.

And I needed to remember why I had chosen the silicone free life and the life of a co-washer.  My hair is dry at the best of times and any silicone build up would necessitate a sulfate shampoo to shift, which is inherently drying.  I didn’t want to buy into a vicious circle.  Also I’m lazy and I like the one rinse business (sometimes I simply rinse off my pre-poo and declare my hair ‘washed’).

So to wash the dimethicone right out of my hair these were my wash steps

1) Section hair in 6 plaits

2) Apply Giovanni’s Tea Tree Triple Treat Invigorating shampoo, lather and rinse

I’m usually a co-washer only but I needed to use a detergent to shift the dimethicone.  I chose this shampoo because it purports to be sulfate free (although it lathers way too much for me to be convinced of this) and it cleanses without stripping too much from my hair

Apply Tresemme’s naturals with Extra Virgin Olive oil (approx 10:1), leave for 5 minutes and rinse out.  This is my silicone conditioner substitute.  It’s obvious now but it took Crystal Afro to point it out.  This has great slip and not a silicone in sight!


) T-shirt dry for an hour

5) Air dry for an hour

6) Re-plait each section apply oil mix to seal

I’m still perfecting the mix ratio of my faux silicone conditioner but it’s a keeper.  And I’m now using it for co-washing, and pre-pooing and I’m sneakily leaving some in my hair after the final rinse to aid manageability.


A Raw Vegan Rant


The one thing I hate most about being a raw vegan is that I can never just walk out of the door in the morning.

There are always several calculations to be made:  When did I last eat, when am I likely to need to eat again, where will I be, and will there be access to food I can eat

Often to avoid this logistical quagmire I carry around a great big canvas bag full of food.

The big ugly canvas bag


The food in the big ugly canvas bag


but sometimes I don’t want to carry around food because

a) It’s an ugly bag and it rarely complements my outfit.

b) It’s heavy.  2500-3000 calories in raw vegetables and fruit will kill your shoulder.

And c) I sometimes simply resent  that I’m a minority in society and my needs aren’t catered for.


But I regret every bag-less stance I’ve taken:  my wallet empties and my belly doesn’t get full.

Here are some raw-food-on-the-go-price shockers:


£5.99 for two sandwiches!


£6.50 for a bag of museli

£6.50 for a bag of museli


raw ice cream £9.99 and £2.30


£1.50 for 30g

4 crackers £5.  wow!

4 crackers £5. wow!


99p each for the bars £2.30 for the 'sweets' 50p for the raisins

99p each for the bars
£2.30 for the ‘sweets’
50p for the raisins

I contend that the best value food on the go is from Sainbury’s; 800g of pineapples for £3.



A Raw Vegan Rants


I’m at a public health conference and this woman passively aggressively stares me down as I make my way back from the buffet with a plate full of fruit and veg.

I call her on it.  And she shamelessly makes some comments about how much food I’ve taken from the buffet and how greedy I am.

‘Really! You just called me greedy.  As though you have the right to comment on my food intake.  Go away woman.’

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This is the plate of food that compelled the woman to judge me; quite unremarkable in quantity, and by raw vegan requirements a very modest meal.

I usually ignore the bug eyed stares when I eat in public.  And in turn most people do their British thing and keep their thoughts to themselves.  I was incensed and confused by the open hostility I encountered from this woman.  I’m a raw vegan.  I get all my calories from fruit and veg.  I eat a lot of them.  Get over it.


Rant 2


I’m at the Park Plaza in Victoria; another conference, another registration made with specific dietary requirements and another disappointment.

I had been hopeful.  The women that took my booking remarked via email ‘A raw vegan how nice my son and I are trying to incorporate more vegan and raw into our diet’.  ‘Enjoy, it’s a great lifestyle’ I had replied.

This is what I was served.

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I have no idea what it is.  The heat has mutilated the vegetables beyond all recognition.

I just don’t understand how this happened.

‘I have a special order to pick up I’m a raw vegan’ – I said to the head usher type person and he led me towards another woman to whom I explained the same thing.

‘Ok so greens and vegetables – this will be alright for you’.  She offered.

‘Yes’.  I confirmed.

I now realise this is where I made the big mistake.

I should have responded:

‘Yes.  Greens and vegetables.  All fresh and uncooked.’

Lesson learnt.  But.  I just don’t understand how you can work in catering and not understand the concept of a raw vegan.

Of course I did the very British thing of not informing the staff that there was a problem with my food.  I merely plated up at the fruit cart and ignored the stares.