Hi, I'm Eleanor (but you can call me Nora)!
As the newest member of Apple Valley Natural Soap, I'll be writing informative and (hopefully) entertaining blogs inspired by AVNS's products and the ingredients that go into making them and I could not be more thrilled about joining this fantastic, curl-friendly company!
I've been ruminating on a proper introduction and while I could go on for hours about my adorable dog, my passion for improv, and my international expeditions...I thought I'd share the aspect of my life that drew me to AVNS in the first place: my hair. However, in order to share my hair care journey, I'm going to have to come clean about something...
I’m going to be honest,
I haven’t always taken care of my hair.
My hair was stick straight until sixth grade. Then it got frizzy. From seventh to tenth grade I blow-dried, straightened, and curled my hair with heat every day before school.
That’s right. For four years I woke up at five thirty am every single morning so I could devote an extra hour to frying my hair.
I did the math.
There are about 165 school days in a year, so one hour per day is 165 hours a year. Multiply that by four and your total is 660 hours. Divide that by 24 hours and that’s 27.5 days. That’s almost an entire non-leap-year February.
A month. A month-long, hair-frying marathon.
I find this horrifying, but not surprising. You see, I didn’t know any better and there was no one to tell me otherwise. I was stuck with a head full of poodle frizz and every hair commercial I saw just enforced my belief that you were either born with beautiful hair or could fix it with heat if you weren’t. Because of this, I did not feel comfortable or confident with my own hair.
Now, I want to make it clear that there is a difference between doing something because you want to and doing something because you think you have to. There is also a difference between touching up your hair a bit every once in a while and changing it every day because you are ashamed of leaving the house otherwise.
How your hair looks my not seem like a big deal, but when you feel forced to alter something about your appearance in order to conform to society’s standards you risk sending another, more damaging message to yourself that says, “the way you are is unacceptable.”
I’m going to tell you something right now: that message is a huge, unacceptable lie.
Thankfully, nature gave me a huge dose of reality...or should I say, douse?
In eleventh grade my family went on vacation in Mexico and because of the weight limits on luggage I was also forced to take a vacation from my blow-dryer and curler. After a day spent playing in the ocean all that salt gave my hair the boost it needed to prove to me that it could do more than frizz.
I guess nature has a habit of bringing out the best in us.
At first I thought maybe the curly hair thing was a fluke. For a few weeks I dipped my hair in a bowl filled with table salt and water to get the same results as I had from the ocean (Yes, I looked ridiculous doing this). But eventually I did some research. I bought curly hair products, styled my hair when it was wet, and left the heat tools in my drawer. My hair’s transformation did not occur overnight: the years of straightening had damaged my natural curl pattern beyond repair. Weaning myself off of heat tools also took several years because I was so used to relying on them, but it was worth it.
My decision to embrace my natural hair means I get to feel ten times better about myself without making any adjustments.
AVNS wants you to look great, but more importantly we want you to go through life feeling great.
As a curly girl with defiant curls, I care about what goes into my hair products. Cheap brands of shampoo and conditioner may advertise products for curly hair, but if you take the time to pull out your magnifying glass and scan the ingredient list hidden on the back of your shampoo bottle, it will reveal silicones and sulfates (agents notorious for parching and dulling curls over time). Honesty in the health and beauty industry is so important, we want safe products with long term benefits and as consumers we want to invest in a company we can trust without constantly having to run DIY background checks on what we are using in our hair and on our bodies.
AVNS proudly displays our ingredient list right under every product description, and why wouldn’t we? From straight to spiral and everything in between, we've got shampoo bars that will nourish your silky strands. And that, my friend, is the honest truth.