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  1. #1
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    Unhappy OMG, my edges - getting older and, wow, life is stressful

    I've actually never had thickness around my edges and when I had microbraids, I started a bad habit: wearing a cotton headband at my hair line. Okay, microbraids can be a bad habit too if you let them put them in too tight, and I constantly allowed that and sometimes kept them in too long. My edges took a beating. I stopped wearing braids a long time ago and have pretty much stuck with two-strand twists and a twist out since then. That's worked for me as it suits my face, but my edges hate me.

    I'm 50 now. Things have been REALLY stressful over the last year, and I started to notice a few weeks ago that my hair has peaked. It's not getting shorter, but I'm not getting any length. I've been natural now for years, so I know it's stress, aging, and having to be in survival mode (work stress and relationship stress, including a verbal abuse and a restraing order, and, most recently, surgery to fix a diabetic complication.) That relaxed mode I was in for awhile is going to take some time to come back, that's for sure.

    A more relaxed mode includes stuff like regular Aphogee treatments. I swear by those and I can't even tell you the last time I did one or where the bottle is right now. I'm also using a temporary hair color to cover my greys: it's really all about age discrimination and not vanity. I like my greys as they're this shimmering silver. However, I'm in tech, which is very youth-focused. I can fly under the radar in most situations because I look like I'm in my 30s, but my grey hair does age me. I'm interviewing and age discrimination is just as real as race and gender discrimination. Therefore, I cover it up.

    The fine (thin) hair, the length or lack of it now, and greys I can handle, but my hair line is now REALLY thin.

    It used to just be on my left and right sides, but now it's also crept up to my crown. I started massaging Jamacian black castor oil on my edges weeks ago and now I'm also massaging the old into my crown. Pretty much all of my front hair line gets an oil massage before I go to sleep. That's helped a little bit, but I was also wearing those headbands all the time. I realized I had a complex about it because I KNOW my hair is thin, and the headbands hide it. However, the headbands also help to cause it.

    Someone I know, who also does hair and who has offered a couple of times to do mine, said I should stop wearing them. I know she's right, so for the last two days, I've actually gone out into the wild with no headband! Yesterday, I had twists. Today, I found a good YouTube video (see below) about styling around damaged edges and got some inspiration. My hair has always been fine, so I had to improvise a bit, but I took her tip of just rolling my hair up off of my forehead giving it some height, and it was fine. It's not ideal, but it won't be ideal until my edges grow back in. that's going to take a few months if not longer. They're filling in but slowly.

    Any tips? I tend to massage the Jamacian black castor oil into my edges at night. I just bought the type with peppermint oil in it because I've heard good things about peppermint stimulating growth. I also mixed some peppermint oil with coconut oil and use that during the day. I'm less consistent with that. I co-wash and twist with the peppermint JBCO and Curly Curl Cream by Taliah Waajid. I briefly went back to the Aveda Humectant Pomade; I used that for years because when I lived abroad it was easier to find than stuff like JBCO and black hair care products. That didn't work out. I'm sure with coloring my hair I need way more moisture than I used to, so I went back to JBCO and Waajid's product. I keep my hair mostly in twists. When I take the twists out, it's usually just for a few days.

    I already make sure to have fruits and veggies. Even on a budget, you can eat a ton of fruit and veggies. I take a multivitamin for women my age and, because I have type 1 diabetes, I'm always getting blood draws, so I know I don't have any deficiencies either.

    Anyway, I think I'm doing everything right, but tips are always good. Thanks in advance!

    "The person who says it cannot be done should not interrupt the person doing it." - Chinese Proverb

    "Fall seven times a day, stand up eight." - Japanese Proverb

    “All truth is good, but not all truth is good to say.” - African Proverb

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  3. #2
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    Default Re: OMG, my edges - getting older and, wow, life is stressful

    Scribe, I don't have any tips...I just wanted to give you a {{hug}} in empathy and solidarity...

    I read somewhere that up to 60% of women experience thinning as they age. Add in hormonal changes around menopause and...yeah...it seems this is a thing. And that's WITHOUT all the extra stress and illness you mention.

    I'm 53 now and my front hairline has definitely started to creep backwards. The hair on the right side of my head has always been less dense than the hair on my left, but I can really feel it now when I wash. Fortunately I'm the only one who knows because I'm still wearing WNGs most of the time. The only time I put any tension on my hairline is when I stretch my hair out and wear it pulled back (as I did the previous two weeks) and even then I'm not really pulling it tight.

    As for my silvers...I'm in tech too but as of right now I feel pretty secure in my job (knock on my wood dining room table) so I'm like, f*** it, I'm keeping them. Though my cousin left me her bottle of root touch-up ...I don't plan on using it but it's still sitting on my table.

    I'll be interested in hearing what others have to say on this subject.
    How will your 2019 be different than any other year?

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  5. #3
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    Default Re: OMG, my edges - getting older and, wow, life is stressful

    For me, locking took care of de-stressing my crown area. Relaxed or loose were the worse for that area, where my texture is sharp and very fragile(breaks easily from the sharp turns vs loose curves). I have seen my rt temple thin progressively slowly each decade. It's always been 'weak"I don't try to lock it, I let it be and only spritz with water and gentle massages if touch at all. I've found it really does not like to be bothered with. I've added locks to the left side of my temple area via this technique. But I sleep on my right for the most part, so it's probably a factor. I used to try aloe vera gel..but products seams to cause more stress as well. Water and leave it alone works well enough. I"m just trying to not loose anymore at this point. #50
    KnottyAuthor aka Cheleski

    "Your Nappy Hair is as Professional As You Are"
    How To Live Professional & Locked

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  7. #4
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    Default Re: OMG, my edges - getting older and, wow, life is stressful

    Thanks, LBellatrix and KnottyAuthor!

    I think part of it is mental in the sense that I've had a complex about my edges for years. It got worse with braids because the tension that microbraids put on your hair is crazy. If you procrastinate on taking them out and getting new ones, it's even worse. I did get cornrows a few times during that phase. Those were better.

    The braids phase was right before I made a commitment to be natural. Prior to that, I just didn't know what to do with my hair but knew that heat and chemicals weren't the way for me. Braids were a blessing and a curse. I'd cut my hair before in an act of rebellion after a bad perm. My mom didn't react well, so I think that's why it took me years even after her death to consider natural hair. She didn't know what to do with it; she had a much looser texture of hair as did my father. The benefit of braids: there was no big chop for me as I unintentionally transistioned over the years with braids. The curse of braids: I got addicted to those cotton headbands.

    I could just do a big chop now, but I do have hair and would like to keep it. My plan is an Aphogee treatment tonight to give my hair a head start. (In fact, that's why I'm here: to look up that legendary Aphogee thread.)

    The stress of surgery is real. Aging is real too, so yeah. I just feel like I need to get over the ego and insecurity stuff regarding my hair line, so far so good. I took my twists/bad pin curls out, met up with a friend, and even got on Facebook to talk about it. I just shared that my headbands were going bye-bye and why. I figure going public just puts it out there because the reason I'm in this damn mess is the insecurity I've been carrying for years about how thin/fine my hair is and how my edges have always been a challenge. I'm also going to probably have to let covering the greys go because it's better to have grey hair than no hair.

    I've been nurturing my edges for the last few weeks with JBCO, and that's been working. I wasn't nurturing the crown, just the sides. Then I noticed thinning at the top and went into a real panic. Hopefully, being aware of it and keeping the headbands off my hair will help. Also I'll mention it to my medical team. I had local anesthesia, so I'm pretty sure the variable is stress. I get regular blood tests and a full panel, at least, once a year. I hope I'm not being ambushed by another medical condition.

    I don't think I'll loc. Nothing against those that do loc, but I like my hair loose and have never considered it for me. Now, I might change my mind at some point. I will have to put more time into my hair. I sort of hate that but until these edges fill in, I'm sort of stuck having to give a s$%t.

    BTW, found this video, so I'm going to try this out:
    Last edited by Scribetastic; 09-24-2018 at 07:02 AM.
    "The person who says it cannot be done should not interrupt the person doing it." - Chinese Proverb

    "Fall seven times a day, stand up eight." - Japanese Proverb

    “All truth is good, but not all truth is good to say.” - African Proverb

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  9. #5
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    Default Re: OMG, my edges - getting older and, wow, life is stressful

    I've learned a lot from MissKenK. I grew up watching my mom pin-curling her hair. I have a big box of pin clips in my closet so I'm going to try this style at some point.

    It sounds like you're doing all the right things. How about throwing out or donating those headbands?
    How will your 2019 be different than any other year?

  10. #6
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    Default Re: OMG, my edges - getting older and, wow, life is stressful

    Quote Originally Posted by LBellatrix View Post
    I've learned a lot from MissKenK. I grew up watching my mom pin-curling her hair. I have a big box of pin clips in my closet so I'm going to try this style at some point.

    It sounds like you're doing all the right things. How about throwing out or donating those headbands?
    Ended up I didn't get a chance to play around with pin curls until today. Then I realized that while I can run around with twists all out in the wild or twist my hair back and clip it, pin curls in the wild really isn't a look for me. I have a satin-finish narrow scarf that I could wrap around and got inspiration from this YouTube video (see below). There are going to be more scarves in my future, which is good. This is just also forcing me to switch things up since I can't go back to what I was doing.

    I've not worn any of those headbands since I just decided my edges were no more wrecked than some of the ones I saw on YouTube. That's a screwed up way to force myself out of this bad habit but literally seeing my hair thin out so severely forced my hand.

    I'm going to need to toss or donate all of the ones that are porus cotton for sure. I also know of this brand https://www.graceeleyae.com/. They have satin-lined headbands, so once the job situation gets better (and let's hope that's soon) I'll order a few of these products.

    "The person who says it cannot be done should not interrupt the person doing it." - Chinese Proverb

    "Fall seven times a day, stand up eight." - Japanese Proverb

    “All truth is good, but not all truth is good to say.” - African Proverb

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  12. #7
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    Default Re: OMG, my edges - getting older and, wow, life is stressful

    I get you, about locking. That's cool. Just emphasizing that leaving them alone really does grow a long way.
    For me, my hair has rewarded me due to minimal manipulation. if you can find that 'nirvana' lose, please share with us soon! BTW the castor oil craze and all did NOT work for me. i saw more thinning...I don't think it was product as much as...manipulation with product. It was not a magic fix for me...I also tested theory with aloe vera gel. Happy growing!
    KnottyAuthor aka Cheleski

    "Your Nappy Hair is as Professional As You Are"
    How To Live Professional & Locked

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  14. #8
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    Default Re: OMG, my edges - getting older and, wow, life is stressful

    Thanks. The oil is working on the sides. I think it might take more time with the areas that literally lost hair. Only time will tell if it works for me or not. I just scored a few Amazon gift certifications, so I'm going to invest in some emu oil too. That was highly recommended by one of the YouTubers. I figure just leaving it alone and time would solve it. I'm hoping oil and regular protein treamments helps speed it itup
    "The person who says it cannot be done should not interrupt the person doing it." - Chinese Proverb

    "Fall seven times a day, stand up eight." - Japanese Proverb

    “All truth is good, but not all truth is good to say.” - African Proverb

  15. #9
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    Default Re: OMG, my edges - getting older and, wow, life is stressful

    This is where losing you mom early means you simply forget things sometimes. I'm using peppermint Jamaican black castor oil and emu oil for my edges.

    I completely forgot that my mom used gelatin pretty much daily for a long time. I'm not entirely sure how I tripped over that trick, but as soon as I saw it, I was like "OMG, how could I have forgotten those Knox gelatin boxes that were in the pantry for years?!" She's mix it into orange juice. I mix mine into my morning tea. I'm going to up it to morning and evening tea or juice. We'll see if it helps. I also went back to my hair, skin, and nails gummy supplement...just in a case.

    For the areas of my edges that always had hair? No problem. My hair is filling back in. For the areas that have always been thin? It's taking longer, but I'm seeing progress on all fronts. (I'm sure the emu oil is also helping my skin. I already look young, but I figure a new trick never hurts.)

    Thank goodness. That confirms that it was, at least, primarily from the stress of my surgery. My doc also said that, for some women, this is typical. If they go through any period of high stress: marriage, babies, job loss, etc. some women lose their hair after 3 or so months. That's pretty much on the mark. I had my surgery in mid-June and my job ended a couple of weeks after: major stress.

    I'm sure age and peri-menopause isn't helping either, but I'm showing some progress. I think it's almost time for a new Aphogee treatment too.

    Happy Holidays to everyone too!
    "The person who says it cannot be done should not interrupt the person doing it." - Chinese Proverb

    "Fall seven times a day, stand up eight." - Japanese Proverb

    “All truth is good, but not all truth is good to say.” - African Proverb

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  17. #10
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    Default Re: OMG, my edges - getting older and, wow, life is stressful

    Oh you just reminded me of my Mexican friend. She would make and eat some type of gelatin Mexican dessert every day. Her American husband, who was partially bald, began to grow fuzz on the top of his head. She and he said it was the result of eating the gelatin.

    I don't remember her hair being extraordinarily thick but I do recall meeting one of her young friends who had very thick strands. They both that the gelatin dessert ate daily contributed to thickness.

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