Saturday, May 19, 2012

Flax Seed Gel

Homemade Flax Seed Gel is a fantastic curl enhancer with a high success rate.  Flax Seed Gel (FSG) is also cheap and easy to make.  What's that?  Did I hear you say the thought of turning on a stove scares you to death.  Well you can buy some FSG (this shop may be out of business) here at Botticelli Botanicals.  Or Sweet Curls Elixirs  on Etsy.   Or Jessie Curl Rockin' Ringlets Styling Potion is pretty much FSG.  But, it really isn't hard to make and it only costs pennies a batch.  You can do it!

If you try Flaz Seed Gel for the first time from Sweet Curls Elixirs, I'd suggest either 1) plain FSG, 2) FSG with aloe (if you know your hair likes aloe) or 3) ordering a formula for your hair type  Or, maybe order a small bottle or regular and one for your hair type and work toward the perfect FSG for you from there.

FSG is a curl enhancer and helps to define waves/curls.  It doesn't have any hold on its own.  Many people who have hair that gets weighed down find FSG is a product they can use.  When you are trying FSG,  use more FSG then you think you should.  If you have wavy hair, you will probably want to top FSG with another gel with more hold.

Here is a youtube video on how to make FSG.

Here is the jumbo sized Curltalk thread on how to make FSG.  Here is Science'y Hair Blog's FSG recipe.  WS of Science-y Hair Blog lists some add in and tricks    to make FSG thicker and have more hold.  Hold is something most wavies will want. For your first batch, make the basic recipe.

You can customize FSG to fit your needs.  If you have dry hair, you can add oils.  If your hair likes humectants, you can add glycerin.  For hold you can add honey or agave nectar.  For hold and to thicken the gel, you can add corn starch, xanthan gum, hydroxyethylcellulose, or arrow root.  I like to soak my seeds overnight to make the gel thicker and have a bit more hold.  Epsom salt (magnesium sulfate) can be added to make FSG more curl enhancing.  Some people (like me) find epsom salt too drying for their hair.  The gigantic curltalk thread has about a million ideas for things you can add.  If you don't like the flubber-y texture (see pic), mix your FSG with an immersion blender (stick blender).  The flubber-y texture also makes FSG jump out of your hand and run down the drain. Don't say I didn't warn you.  :)  With all the possible add ins, I'll probably never be done experimenting with my FSG recipe.

I suggest you read Science-y Hair Blog's post on preserving homemade hair gel.  She also has info on how to sterilize your equipment and containers, READ IT (last paragraph).  Did you read it yet?  Well make sure you go back and read it.   Keep as much FSG as you will use in a week or two in the fridge.  You can freeze the rest.  I've read that you can freeze and reuse the flax seeds for a second batch.  If your FSG smells sour, it has gone bad.  Toss it.  You can add preservatives to help keep your FSG fresh.  For more info on preservatives, you can read the giant FSG thread on curl talk and/or read the above Science-y Hair Blog link.

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