LaToya Jones

Healthy Hair Care From A Professional Hairstylist


Hair breakage is definitely cause for concern and can almost always be reversed.  Most of the time, taking better care of your hair and giving it a little bit extra of tlc will do the trick. Here are my top 10 tips for stopping and preventing hair breakage.

1.  Trim your ends regularly-  Not trimming your ends regularly causes split ends and leads to breakage.  Continuing to postpone getting trims allows the ends to continue to split up the hair shaft, resulting in having to get more hair cut once you finally break down and get your hair trimmed.  Every six to eight weeks is a good time frame for getting ends trimmed.

2.  Stop doing your own relaxers-  Doing your own relaxers, (or allowing your daughter, sister, niece, cousin, friend, mother, brother's girlfriend, neighbor, etc to do it for you) is not recommended. You can not see what you are doing, which leads to overlapping, causing breakage.  Leave the chemicals to the professionals.

3.  Stretch out your relaxers- Instead of getting relaxers every six weeks, try going fourteen to sixteen weeks. This allows more new growth to actually be relaxed, reducing the risk of overlapping and breakage.

4.  Use heat sparingly-  The less heat you use on your hair the better your chances of not getting heat damage which leads to breakage.  Also, when using your heat tools, make sure it is on the lowest setting that your hair will allow. Don't put your heat tools too low though, or you will find yourself doing multiple passes on one piece of hair. Aim for only one pass with the flat iron or curling iron.

Today's Toya's Tip come from the following question:
"Can you prevent your ends from splitting?"
With this question I'm just going to jump right in. The answer, unfortunately, to this question is no. You can not prevent your ends from splitting. You can, however, prolong them from splitting so fast. You can do this by wrapping your hair every single night. When you do not wrap your hair, whatever you lay on, whether it be a bed, couch, floor, etc causes friction every time your hair rubs up against it. This friction makes the ends split faster. If your hair gets wrapped up on a daily/nightly basis then it does not have the friction created from rubbing up against something which means you can go a bit longer without trimming. Isn't that great news? If you wear your hair in its natural state and wrapping is not an option for you, then you can at least get a satin pillowcase or a satin bonnet. These things are highly effective in preserving your ends. Be sure to join me next time for Toya's Tips!


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A lot of women these days are going the natural route because they want healthier hair.  There is nothing wrong with this decision, however, it is possible to have healthy hair AND have it relaxed at the same time!  Here are nine steps to take care of your relaxed hair.

1.  Stretch out touch ups until you see at least 2 inches of new growth. Getting touch ups every 14-16 weeks instead of every 4-6 weeks makes it much less likely for your hair to be damaged due to over-processing caused by overlapping. Read more here.

2.  Don't aim to get bone straight hair.  Think of the straw at the end of a broom, they break easily because they are so straight and stiff.  It's the same way with hair.  Your hair needs elasticity in it so it can move and flow, and not be prone to breakage so easily.  The hair should be 80% straight for optimum health.

This question is highly debatable, is relaxed hair better than natural hair or vice versa? Well, depending on who you ask you may get several different answers.  I personally am "team relaxer", not because it is "better" but because I like to wear my hair straight, having it is more convenient for me (and I LOVE convenience), and most importantly because I know how to have a relaxer and keep my hair healthy.



Now back to my question.  Is relaxed hair better than natural hair? Is natural hair better than relaxed hair?  My personal answer is that I don't believe one is better than the other.  I believe that healthy hair is the ultimate goal, so whether your hair is natural or relaxed that is what you should be aiming for.  Now I will say this, if you are unable to do what is necessary to take care of your relaxed hair, going natural may be an option that you should consider.  A lot of people say that relaxers cause damage but in reality simply having a relaxer does not equal damaged hair.  It is the responsibility not only of the person administering it to do so correctly, but also the responsibility of the person who receives it to take the proper steps in order to prevent any damage from occurring.  Lets take a closer look at what causes the hair to be damaged when you receive relaxers.
  • Improper administration- This is one of the top reasons why hair gets damaged when having relaxed hair.  Improper administration means that the relaxer was not applied correctly.  Applying a relaxer incorrectly will 100% of the time result in damage.  This is why it is vitally important to let an experienced professional hair stylist apply your relaxer.  Trying to do it yourself or having an unprofessional do it for you can result in damage.  I will be honest, before I even thought about going to cosmetology school, especially in my broke college days, there were plenty of times where I gave myself a relaxer or had a friend do it. I will also admit that I suffered from plenty of scalp burns.  I thought this was normal and no big deal but once I went to cosmetology school I learned that I was so wrong.  I found out that not only are you not supposed to get scalp burn, but it is not supposed to burn you at all! In fact, it should only take an average of 13-15 minutes to apply.  That includes putting it in and working it all the way through.  I know that when I was doing my own relaxers that it took me at least 13 minutes just to put it on and probably another 15 minutes to work it through.  No wonder I had so many scalp burns!
  • Applying too much heat- Having a relaxer does weaken the hair some by breaking some of the bonds in the hair.  Adding too much heat by curling and flat ironing it multiple times a week is not advisable.  Doing this causes too much strain on the hair which in turn causes damage.
  • Not receiving the proper treatments as needed- Since we have established that relaxers do weaken the hair, it is necessary to add that strength back in by receiving protein treatments.  Protein helps strengthen the hair by making it stronger and giving it what the application of the relaxer can take away.  Beware: too many protein treatments can cause the hair to become too brittle and break.  Therefore it is advisable to only get these when absolutely necessary.
  • Adding even more chemicals- I have said this before and I will say it again.  Pick one chemical and stick with it.  Either relaxer OR color, but not both.  It is possible to have healthy hair and have both a relaxer and color, but most people don't do what is necessary to keep the hair healthy so I advise to pick which one is more important for you to have.  If you can't live without your relaxer, opt for a semi permanent color instead of permanent or get some colored extensions added.  There are plenty of options available to give the illusion of having color without actually having it. If you prefer to have permanent color, opt for ditching your relaxer. It is much easier to take care of your hair when you only have one chemical in your hair instead of two.
  • Not combing it- I know this sounds crazy but it is important to comb your hair daily unless the style you have chosen doesn't allow it.  In that case, tying it down is fine.  Not combing your hair simply because you don't feel like it or are too lazy to results in matting which causes breakage. Don't do this, in fact you want to make sure you wrap your hair every night to protect it.
  • Getting relaxers too often- 10 out of 10 people that claim relaxers broke their hair off also got them at least every 4-8 weeks.  This is not enough time! Instead try going at least four months (see why here) in between relaxers to allow your hair to grow out enough so that the relaxer is not overlapped onto the previously relaxed hair.


If you are not willing to do the things listed above for your relaxed hair, then your hair just may be healthier if it were natural.  Having natural hair is not a pass to neglect the hair though.  Some women with natural hair have told me that it is a lot more work to handle than their relaxed counterparts.  It is very possible to have unhealthy natural hair if the hair is being neglected.  

So, now I will ask the question again.  Which is better, natural or relaxed hair?  The answer is neither.  It is better to have HEALTHY hair.  Whether you are relaxed or natural, develop a hair care routine that helps you to have the healthiest hair possible.  My motto is "all hair can be good hair!".  If your hair is healthy, it is good!

See the video for this post here:




Have you ever seen someone who recently got their hair colored which inspired you to go do the same thing, but when you did, you hated how it looked on you? We've all been there.  Picking the perfect hair color for yourself is an art.  The key is knowing what shades work best with your skin tone, and which ones you should stay away from.

Before you pick a hair color, you should first know if your skin tone is warm or cool.

Characteristics of cool skin tones:


  • Skin is dark brown with reddish undertones
  • Skin is brown with pink undertone
  • Skin is brown or bronze when you tan
  • Skin is olive
  • You can easily wear black
  • You look better in pure white vs. ivory
  • The veins in your arm appear blue
  • Silver jewelry looks best on you

Characteristics of warm skin tones:
  • Skin is dark brown with golden undertones
  • Skin is brown or medium with golden undertones
  • Your skin is golden brown when you tan
  • You look better in ivory vs. pure white
  • The veins in your arm appear greenish
  • Gold jewelry looks best on you
How to choose the perfect color for you:

Platinum blonde:


This color looks great on light brown skin that has gold or warm undertones. If your skin is very dark, you may want to stay away from platinum blonde.  I do not condone taking jet black hair and trying to make it platinum blonde. ESPECIALLY if your hair already has chemicals in it.  The only way I would even think about considering going platinum blonde is if the hair is chemical free (no relaxer or straightener), the hair is very short (when was the last time you saw a black woman with platinum blonde LONG, healthy hair and it was all hers?), and if the hair is naturally a sandy or light brown to begin with.  If your hair doesn't meet this criteria seek platinum blonde weave instead.  Otherwise, it is very likely that you will suffer hair loss and/or breakage and damage.


Honey blonde


Honey blonde or warm golden blonde colors look best on golden brown skin tones, as these colors can make your skin look brighter and more radiant.  


Reds:  


Reds look great on very dark skinned women with warm undertones, or medium brown women with warm undertones.  If you want to be more subtle you can get a mahogany or plum.  And if you choose to be a little bit more edgy, you can opt for a more fiery red. The only downside to coloring your hair red, it fades quickly!


Jet Black



Jet black looks great on brown skin with cool undertones.  It makes the skin look healthier and makes the hair look shiny.  Going jet black is a great way to have a subtle, yet noticeable change.  People with very light and warm toned skin should stay away from jet black, it will make you look faded or washed out.

No matter what hair color you choose, one key point is that you must use great hair products to maintain it. Proper maintenance will help you to not have dry hair which can turn brittle and can be prone to breakage. I recommend the by L. Jones products simply because they are sulfate free, paraben free, and include lots of moisture inside them. The Extreme Moisture Shampoo, Intense Moisture Treatment, as well as the Leave-In Conditioner. The three products will keep your hair very conditioned.

Check out the video below on this post:





Need better hair products?

Need better hair products?
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Need Hair Extensions?

Need Hair Extensions?
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