Note: I recorded how I detangled, flat ironed, and trimmed for this touch up and like a dum-dum, delete all the footage BEFORE saving it to my laptop. Silly me, I assumed I transferred both pics and video before clearing my memory card but clearly didn’t. Sorry Cindy, I know you requested it 🙁

I have an old vid of how I trim my hair and I used the same method for this touch up, you can check out the vid here.

As you’ve probably guessed from my Instagram and the JGA Facebook page, I ended my stretch at 11 weeks yesterday. I used the same exact half & half method (relaxing the back half of my hair first, then the front) I always use to self relax my hair. You can check my video of how I self relax here.

I used my usual Organic Root Stimulator Olive Oil relaxer, lye formula, normal strength. For new JGA readers, I do not relax my hair bone straight. I opt to texlax, which simply means I purposely under-process my hair thereby leaving more texture. For more on the ins and outs of texlaxing, check out this post: Texlaxing: What, How, & Why

For this touch up, I used the same products and steps as my last relaxer touch up in December 2012 so hop over to that post (link here!) to check it out. After rinsing out my deep conditioner (Silk Dreams Vanilla Silk Cream Moisture Dream) I wrapped my hair up with a cotton t-shirt to absorb excess water for about 30 minutes. After applying leave in conditioner and serum, I detangled my hair and bunned it for the night. I normally finish my hair all in one day but I wasn’t feeling up to it.

The next day, my hair was smooth from air drying in the bun that I didn’t really want to flat iron it… but, I did because I planned on giving myself a trim and wanted my hair all one length for the trim. Below is a picture of my air dried bun the next morning and to the right is my air dried hair after taking down the bun (not yet flat ironed). Smooth right?

Looky, looky. I’m smiling in a blog post, lol!

I flat ironed my hair using my Hana Titanium 1.5″ flat iron, temp set at 230 degrees Farenheit. For heat protectant, I lightly sprayed my hair with ApHogee Keratin and Green Tea Restructurizer and applied a REALLY small amount of Redken Smooth Down Heat Glide. I used a small amount because this serum is fairly heavy and if I’m not careful, will weigh my hair down.

After flat ironing, I trimmed off an inch, which was one of my March Goals, so I’m glad I stuck with it! I didn’t do an “official” length check a la pink length check shirt so I don’t know exactly how much I grew (although I will say that I can’t remember the last time my new growth was as dense as this stretch… but it was at least an inch since my pre-trim hair hit my elbows and I was I think an inch above them last touch up) … or how far away I am from hip or w/hip length (between waist and hip) but that’s fine with me. I’ll keep on growing and chopping off bone straight ends throughout the year.

I texted my BF a picture of my pre-trim hair and he fully supported growing my hair down to bum-length haha…. I purposely avoided telling him I was about to cut some off, but after this post he’ll know I “attacked” (his phrase, not mine) my hair. Whoops.


Successful stretch all in all. I’ll stretch for 10-12 weeks again and simply keep doing what I’ve been doing in between. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!



  1. Hey, luv your blog! All your tips are very helpful. I was wondering how long have you been using the Redken Extreme Strength Builder Plus during your relaxer process, and do you only use the amino acids in prep for relaxers? Thank you in advance 🙂

    1. Author

      Thanks! I've used it in the last 3 touch ups, since October 2012. Yep I only use the SAA when prepping to relax my hair.

  2. Do you ever consider going longer, what are the pros and cons of extending passed 12 weeks? Just asking because I did my first stretch to 10 weeks (today) and it wasnt as bad as I thought it would be. My next stretch will be 12 weeks but I really dont see the need to go pass 12 weeks.

    1. Author

      I've gone longer but no longer do because the longer my stretch goes, the more tangles I get/the longer it takes to detangle… it's not worth it for me to go longer.

      Pros: more new growth to work with, decrease in chances of overlapping the relaxer.
      Cons: more tangles, breakage, longer wash days

  3. Hi Jen,

    How long are your relaxer stretches? Do you keep them around 10 weeks or do you go longer?

  4. Hi Jeni ~ your hair looks absolutely amazing!!! I hope to be there someday. I just have a quick question about your touch ups. With step two, the way you do half your hair at a time…do you rinse the product out from the back half, before moving on the to the top half, or just leave it, and rinse all at once. I'm confused (and admittedly, having seen your 'how to video', because that would be over 20 minutes of product on the back half. Also at what point are you applying the strength builder plus? I have read and reread this post and it doesn't make sense to me.

    Thanks in advance, Sharla

    1. Sorry, I have not seen your 'how to video'…thanks!

    2. Author

      Hi Sharla, here are the steps:

      (1) Relax the back half
      (2) Rinse out all the relaxer from back half
      (3) Apply Redken Extreme Strength Builder Plus for 10 minutes
      (4) Rinse out Redken ESBP
      (5) Shampoo with neutralizing shampoo and cover back half with plastic cap
      (6) Relax the front half… repeat steps (1)-(5)

  5. Your hair looks so BEAUTIFUL. I wish we were friends and living in the same city I would definitely be coming by you to take care of my hair on a weekly basis . So Inspiring .

    1. Author

      Thank you! Doing other's hair is more fun than doing my own!

  6. Your hair looks so beautiful! You should smile more often in your pics. It really brightens your face.

  7. Yaaaaaay !!!!! You did it !!! Loool it's ok for the video XD I know you had one on YouTube (I saw it)
    I can't Believe how excited I am about YOUR hair lol that's kind of weird isn't it XD
    Your hair and eyebrows are near perfection…wait no! they ARE the definition of perfection to me !!
    I'm sorry you had to cut though, it looks like all the brownish highlights are gone but it looks healthier over all !

    Health before Length!!!!!
    I'm so happy !!! I'm getting a relaxer this saturday too can't wait to end up my 36 weeks post stretch!
    Have a smiley day haha !

    1. Author

      Thanks! They're still there, they show in sunlight or with flash. That's a long stretch, kudos to you!

  8. Gorgeous results as always Jeni. You didn't lose too much length and your ends look great!

  9. Omg your hair is amazing . I have a quick question please.What do you suggest for hair that grows more slower in the front sides than the hair in the back? My hair is longer in the back , it is apl but the front is weird. By the way I don't sleep on my sides at night. Thank you.

    1. Author

      Thank you! Hmm, maybe try to stimulate growth in the slower growing sections with scalp massages using maybe a sulfur based oil, castor oil, rosemary oil (which is an essential oil that needs to be diluted in a carrier oil).

    1. Author

      Thank you! I got it from

  10. Lord! Such beautiful hair… Because of you I've ordered a major haul of products. LOL. I'm most excited about Darcy's leave-in in and Komaza Moisturizing Spray. Hope they work for me as well as they do for you. Your hair is definitely your glory 1 Cor 11:15. Good job on this blog too.. it a fantastic inspiration.

  11. Your results always amazing and encouraging. I love the bun…and Yes, keep growing.

  12. You blog gives me (and my hair) hope to grown one day! I love everything you post it's always interesting

  13. I'm always impressed with how straight your airdried hair gets. Beautiful results (before and after the flat ironing). 🙂

    1. of course I meant bun lol.
      I have a question. When relaxing the back. How do you know you're not overlapping?

  14. That is some long, beautiful hair!!! I LOVE the smiling photos too – so pretty :-)! Keep up the good work.

  15. Jen you hair is very beautiful and that bun is so gorgeous, great Job! How much more bone straight ends do you have left to trim off?

    1. Author

      Thank you!!! About 4 inches of bone straight ends to go

  16. Amazing!!
    I would of love to see how you trim as well! something I'm rubbish at lol 🙂

  17. absolutely gorgeous! love your progress… you help keep me focused!

  18. Jen quick question, I want my hair to be bone straight, but for a year now, it just wouldn't … My hair looks texlaxed and acts texlaxed but it processes for the recommend time, and I don't add anything to my relaxer. Would the ors lye relax my hair straight? Thanks in advance 🙂

    1. Author

      Hmm, ORS texlaxes my hair without adding anything to it and I leave it on for the recommended time as well so I don't think it would be the best choice if you're trying to go bone straight 🙁

    2. I just love your photos. What camera do you use? The colours are beautiful!

      Suggestion about relaxer. If you use a lot of oils in you hair skip that the last week before relaxing. Oil in you hair prevents the relaxer to make your hair bone straight. So if you want it bone straight, wash it with a cralifying shampoo to make sure all products and oils are gone and dont put anything in your hair for a week. you will see straighter results.


  19. I really hope you reach your goal. To me all men seem to hate when its time for their girl to get a trim. My bf is super excited about my journey I told him last relaxer i got a trim he was like "Why? how is it gonna grow if you keep cutting it!?" I'm loving your hair seriously and only hope I can achieve some of the goals you have.

    1. Author

      Thank for the well wishes! I hope I get as close as possible!

      Haha, my BF says the same thing… men, lol.

      Wishing you the best on your HHJ!

  20. Your ends didn't look bad before…but they look incredible after the trim! Love the swirly-ness of your bun! Is that a word?!

    1. Author

      Surprisingly I was ready to cut MORE, I had to tell myself to stop haha… we're our worse critics, I thought my ends were blah so your comment cheered me up!

      Thank you!

  21. I want you hair! lol That bun is everything. Patiently waiting to get anywhere near where you are.

  22. Attacked your hair LOL. I'm all natural but I love your blog and have used some of the products you reviewed (you introduced me to Redken Extreme Strength Builder Plus when I was going through moisture overload). I know your blog is about hair but I was wondering if you could add a skin routine – I think your skin is just gawg.

  23. Beautiful results! I literally screamed a little when I saw you did a relax update xD Always excited for you when I see your progress! haha

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