Taming the Mane ft. Not Your Mother’s

Hello Penny Darlings and welcome back to another week!


House Keeping:

Any big life updates? I don’t think so. Preston got offered a new job! So that will be exciting – but I will definitely miss his flexibility to be my photographer!

My 25th birthday (May 23rd) creeps closer & closer! I’m still thinking about posting a wish list blog post? I love being nosy – thoughts?

So like, here’s an attachment to my Birthday Wish List on Amazon – but it would just be a whole post about that. Is anyone doing that? And I mean, if anyone WANTED to send me a birthday present – I definitely wouldn’t be mad about it.

And there’s going to be like, a week of giveaways for my birthday! It’s going to be gift cards and products and fun stuff like that! I’m so pumped!

And I’m thisclose to hitting 10K on instagram – so be sure to check out my page!

I also made a Twitter. But I’m like a Twitter grandma and I have no idea what to do with it. So follow me on Twitter as I post like an 84 year old spinster!



So today, I want to talk about something deeply important to me. This topic has affected my life so greatly that it has literally sent me into a panic attack.

My hair care products.

I wish I were being dramatic. But I did, for real, have a panic attack because I ran out of Plump for Joy by Not Your Mother’s hair gel.

I’m normal. I swear.


So, you all have seen me. I’m a human person with hair. And it’s CURLY AF. And not only that, it’s NATURALLY CURLY AF. So I am always a hot (or humid) second away from a frizzy rats’ nest, flat curls, or getting a hair tie stuck it. And don’t even get me started on the struggle that is detangling this mess. (Curly haired girls, amirite or amirite?)

This is a 100% true story – I didn’t do ANYTHING to my hair. Like, got out of bed, went to a grocery store and a little boy asked me what was wrong with my head. I couldn’t even be mad. I looked like I stuck my finger in an electric socket.


Naturally, hair care products that make me resemble a human person with hair are important to me.

It’s how I keep people from running and screaming when they look at me.

And a few years ago, my mom turned me on to this Beach Babe hair spray and Kinky Moves Curl Defining Crème and I became obsessed. A few years later, I added Plump for Joy to the regime. And now they have a natural/botanical line that I became obsessed with.

And yes, I 100% realize the irony that my actual and literal mother introduced me to a brand called “Not Your Mother’s” and that it quite literally IS my mother’s brand.

But it’s my mom’s hair that I got. Here’s a pic of us side by side:




But  a few months ago I wrote a post all about having naturally curly hair…which I do! And how I style it. And if you go back and look at that link – three out of my four post-shower hair products are Not Your Mother’s. I am absolutely obsessed with the brand.

So a few weeks ago I reached out to Not Your Mother’s to do a collab blog about Not Your Mother’s Hair Care products. And Maria (their wonderfully sweet public relations rep!) was an absolute gem! 10/10 for being a great company to work with! They were so sweet and helpful and now I totally follow Maria’s ADORABLE pooch on Instagram.

But anyway, I digress.

So after Not Your Mother’s and Penny Darling decided to team up for a blog post – Maria was kind enough to send me a bunch of products (both to try and ones that I loved!) for this review! So I’m going to go through each and give you my thoughts!


First: I want to talk about my three ‘every day’ products.

These products: Beach Babe Texturizing Sea Salt Spray, Kinky Moves Curl Defining Cream, and Plump for Joy Thickening Hair Lifter are my three every-day-no-matter-what-post-shower-hair products.


Beach Babe Texturizing Sea Salt Spray

I love this product because I have VERY VERY VERY fine hair. So, it’s super easy for my curls to go flat with no texture in them. I start by parting my hair and spraying Beach Babe underneath my hair, up around the crown line, for extra volume and texture, and then tousle it down towards to roots.

This was the first product I ever used from NYM brand and I have seriously not stopped using it from Day #1.

And most importantly it does NOT MAKE MY HAIR CRUNCHY. There is seriously nothing I hate more than crunchy curls.


Kinky Moves Curl Defining Hair Cream

I like this product because it is designed to keep curls soft and bouncy and it succeeds. It’s also a majorly helpful tool for the frizz factor.

These make my electric socket curls look like Shirley Temple ringlets and what more could a girl ask for?


Plump for Joy Thickening Hair Lifter

Again – one of my major hair problems is that my hair is so fine that even a SMIDGE of unrinsed conditioner makes it look flatter than a basketball in Space Jam.

So I use this as my last piece of the puzzle (and I am OBSESSSSSSSSED) with the smell of this.

This products gives me such thick looking hair that people are often surprised when I braid it and the braids are SUPER skinny.

This was the product I had a panic attack about.

But, like, listen, I was going on a photo shoot day with Preston and I didn’t realize until AFTER I was out of the shower that my gel was gone and I thought I would look so ugly that no one would read my blog anymore and that my hair would look so stupid without it.

This was the hair day in question:

That is the sincerest review I can give about how much I love this product. Not having it reduced me to tears.

New Products

(or at least new to me)

When chatting with Not Your Mother’s – I had said that there were a few products I had always been curious to try and they were so kind to give me some products to try and review.

So let me start with an absolute GAME CHANGER.


NYM Naturals: Curl Defining Combing Cream

This product is seriously like the HOLY FREAKING GRAIL of curly hair care products. It’s a smidge more expensive and worth every freaking penny.

I worked this product into my hair in place of the Kinky Moves cream and HOLY CURLS, BATMAN!

The curls were soft and shiny and tight and bouncy! They held up all day including a 10 hour car trip.

In the last few weeks this has become my new every day.

10/10 would recommend to a friend.

Every curly haired person should go immediately invest in this product.


She’s a Tease Volumizing Hair Spray

So, I have sort of mixed reviews about this product. It was SUPER productive. It held my hair on a windy photo shoot day. It gave my hair SO MUCH VOLUME without looking greasy or crunchy. It made my curls look amazing.

Here’s a pic of me on the day that I used that hairspray in 15mph winds.

The only down side of this product was that I didn’t care for the smell. It’s Apple Blossom scented and it was a little too floral-y for my taste. I’m more of a clean, citrus, tropical, or mint scented person – but overall it was still a GREAT product.

Like look at this volume:

NYM Natural Curly Shampoo & Conditioner

I swapped this out in the shower for my normal minty shampoo and curl conditioner. I really like the results. They gave me very tight and bouncy curls overall!

And a bonus: the scent is VERY coconut and tropical smelling.

The shampoo was a great cleanser – it was gentle but effective. The only thing I didn’t like about this combo was that I had to use a little extra conditioner to get everything conditioned. But when I did – my curls were springy and bouncy AF!

Way to Grow Leave-In Conditioner

This was the last product I got to try. Now, I tend to use Leave-In Conditioner if I am going to

A.) Sleep on my hair
B.) Go to sleep with my hair wet.
C.) Before I go to bed.
D.) If I am NOT trying to style my hair.

I also apparently forgot to take a picture of this product and it’s packed deep inside the bag I took to Kentucky this weekend – so please enjoy this stock image!


Image result for way to grow
I find leave in conditioner makes my hair VERY heavy and weighted if I use it during the day. I feel like if I had thicker hair – I would use this 100% of the time – but as it is – I do not.

I use this after I take evening or weekend showers. It makes my hair SO soft and definitely has helped with the split ends and flyaways. I usually put a dime sized amount on before bed and wash it out in the morning as a daily routine. This has been far less drastic of a change – but I put so much other stuff in my hair that I try to nourish it and give it healthy stuff every once in awhile!


NYM Natural Curly Detangler

I was skeptical AF about this product. I was totes worried that it would make my hair so flat and weighted that it would do nothing.

And luckily, I was wrong. It’s a very weightless detangler.

I spritz a little into my hand before I let it air dry and work it into the roots at the back of my hair (which is where I get the most tangles) and right before I put it up in a ponytail.

Again, this product was nearly as drastic of a difference and may not be a NEED for my type of hair but 10/10 can say that it works swimmingly.


Additional Perk:

You can buy these products basically anywhere. You can buy them at Ulta, CVS, Walgreens. Hell, I buy mine at Giant (which is the local PA grocery store). They are also available at Walmart, Target, etc. AND AND if you can’t find them in a store – you can buy them on their website.

And they also have lines for straight hair, curly hair, hair products for long hair, repair products, super clean, dry shampoo, etc. This is just a mere TASTE of the brand.

Check out their Facebook Page here.

Check their Instagram here.

Click their website for more product info here.

So overall: I think Not Your Mother’s has been EXTREMELY kind to my curls.


The TLDR of this blog is: go get Beach Babes, Plump for Joy, and the Curl Combing Cream if you are going to try these products for curls. They make a WORLD of difference.



And lemme tell you – I got big plans for Penny Darling! This is a quarter-centennial celebration for goodness sake! And it’s only a month away! Yikes!

So I definitely will be posting about my birthday look. (I always feel like I NEVER know what to wear for a party that’s like, for me, you know? HOW CUTE OR SEXY AM I SUPPOSED TO LOOK?!)

I also will be doing a week’s worth of birthday giveaways for some of my faves! So be sure to keep posted for those!

INCLUDING A NYM hair product giveaeway! So if you love these items – stay tuned!

And I decided – I will definitely be adding a birthday wishlist.



The next few weeks have some awesome stuff planned! Some hauls, the LBD, etc, styling my mom Part II, Lindy Bop, Cherry Velvet, and more!

Do you want me to write a post about chub rub? I’d be happy to buy a few things and review them for everyone?

I definitely want to do more His & Her fashion. Do you guys like seeing Preston more?

Follow me on Instagram: @thepennydarling

If you want to follow my darling, Preston – you can click here!

Like my Facebook page here!

Follow me on Twitter here!

Follow me on Snapchat for a more ‘day to day’ look at mine & Preston’s life!: @abby_cadabra

I’d really love to do that Barbie post. If anyone can seriously sponsor it – let me know. I think that would just be the coolest and most fun to do.

Subscribe for updates!

Comment for topics you would like to see me cover! Like to help my self esteem! What do you think so far? More fashion? More lifestyle? Do you like the mix?

My next few blog ideas: Do you want to see my new house stock pile? Seasonal transition? Another haul? Maybe one about those ten pieces that make up a wardrobe. But I’m not sure. I want to know what you are interested in hearing about? My Top 10 Embarrassing Stories? 20 Facts from Your Blogger? A team up with another blogger? Haul? A show off of my Barbie lot? Want me to style you? Let me know!

Love all you wonderful ladies (and gents!) out there!

How Very,


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