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Friday, February 28, 2020

How to of the Day

How to of the Day

How to Straighten a Beard

Posted: 28 Feb 2020 04:00 PM PST

Taming a beard can be a lot of work, especially if your beard hair is curly. Straightening a curly beard is a great way to keep the hair more manageable and show off a new style! You can use a flat iron for longer beards, while silicone cream and relaxer kits can be used for any length. With the right materials and ingredients, you can have a straight, soft beard in no time.


[Edit]Straightening with a Flat Iron

  1. Wash your beard with a shampoo and conditioner specifically for beards. Normal hair shampoos tend to have chemicals that are too harsh for the beard. It can cause dryness in the beard hair that will make it curlier, less manageable, and possibly cause hair breakage. [1]
    Straighten a Beard Step 1.jpg
    • Unless needed, beards should only be washed and conditioned once a week for optimal results. Over-washing the beard can cause dryness and damage to the hair.
    • However, you should use conditioner every day or so to moisturize and soften the beard. [2]
  2. Blow dry and comb your beard. If you let your beard dry naturally, it will dry into tight curls. [3]. Turn on the blow dryer with a comb attachment to low heat and comb your beard in a downward motion. This will help the hair dry faster and make all of your beard hairs dry in one direction. [4]
    Straighten a Beard Step 2.jpg
    • Use the blow dryer on a lower heat setting to prevent drying out the beard hair. This will cause it to frizz and can result in brittle hair with split ends. [5]
    • Some blow dryers do not come with comb attachments. In this case, turn on the blow dryer to a low heat setting and hold it close to your beard with one hand. Then use a beard comb to comb the beard with your other hand.
    • You may also use a beard brush for this step.
  3. Straighten your beard with a small flat iron. Make sure your beard is completely dry before using the flat iron on the hair. Keeping the flat iron at least half an inch away from your skin, position the straightener at the top of your beard and place a small portion of your beard hair between the flat iron. Move the iron down the length of your beard in one motion to straighten the hair downward. Repeat for all areas of the beard until the hair is straightened. [6]
    Straighten a Beard Step 3.jpg
    • You should not keep the flat iron in any one place longer than 5 seconds. Over-exposure to heat can burn and damage your beard hair.

[Edit]Using Silicone Cream and Beard Balm

  1. Apply silicone cream while washing your beard. After using shampoo and conditioner, apply the silicone cream to your entire beard while the hair is still damp. Do not wash the cream out, just gently work it into the beard. [7]
    Straighten a Beard Step 4.jpg
    • Only use enough to cover your beard. Do not use more than needed as it will waste the cream.
    • If you prefer not to use the silicone cream, you can also use a beard oil. Beard oils are moisturizers and leave-in conditioners. However, beard oils only make the beard soft and do not work as straightening agents. [8] For very curly beards, using silicone cream is recommended.
  2. Blow dry and comb your beard. When the silicone cream sets while blow drying and grooming, your beard will be straight for the rest of the day. You will need to reapply the silicone cream the next day for the same results. [9]
    Straighten a Beard Step 5.jpg
    • Use a fine-tooth comb to make sure the silicone cream gets down to the roots of the hair follicles. Using a larger-toothed comb or a brush may not give the appearance of completely straight hair as the cream may not be applied to each individual hair.
  3. Apply beard balm to keep the beard straighter for longer. Beard balms are styling pomades that provide hold for beard styles and make beards appear fuller.[10]. After your beard is dry, apply a small amount of balm, just enough to cover your beard, to hold your straightened hair in place all day.
    Straighten a Beard Step 6.jpg
    • If your beard is able to be straightened temporarily without silicone cream, applying a beard balm directly after blow drying and combing your hair. This will hold the straightened beard in place for a few hours.
    • A stronger form of beard balm is beard wax, which is beard bald made with beeswax for added hold and straightening ability. [11]

[Edit]Relaxing Your Beard

  1. Wash your beard with beard relaxing shampoo and pat it dry with a towel. Two shampoos will come in a relaxer kit, and one is a specific relaxer shampoo. This shampoo is specialty designed to prepare the hair for the relaxer cream. Pat your beard completely dry with a towel.
    Straighten a Beard Step 7.jpg
    • Do not rub your beard when drying as this may wash out the properties of the relaxer shampoo that help prepare and strengthen the hair.
  2. Part your beard into smaller sections with a comb. This will make it easier to apply the relaxer cream to all parts of your beard first before spreading the cream across to any hairs you missed. If necessary, you can use rubber bands to hold the sections of your beard in place.
    Straighten a Beard Step 8.jpg
    • Remember that you will need to throw these rubber bands away after you're finished.
  3. Apply the relaxer cream to each beard section with disposable gloves. The relaxer cream contains compounds specific for hair that may irritate the skin. Be very careful to apply the cream only to your beard and avoid placing any cream directly on your chin or face. [12]
    Straighten a Beard Step 9.jpg
    • If you do experience any irritation sensations after a few minutes, wash the relaxer cream out of your beard and wait before trying the cream again. Check to make sure the skin is not tender to the touch.
    • Beard relaxers do not harm the hair. They are made with ingredients like almond oil, shea butter, and beeswax that moisturize your hair follicles and promote healthy growth. [13]
  4. Comb the relaxer cream through your whole beard. Use a fine-toothed comb to spread the cream throughout your beard to make sure it has been applied to the full length of the hair. Look to make sure all of your beard is covered. [14]
    Straighten a Beard Step 10.jpg
    • Look at the roots of your beard for total coverage. If you do not get the relaxer to your roots, the hair between your face and the top of your beard may still appear curly.
  5. Wait for 30 minutes and wash out the visible relaxer with only water. The cream needs time to be soaked up by the hair and break down your curls to make them more manageable. Relaxer cream that is soaked up by the hair will not be visible to the eye but will still be actively working. After 30 minutes, wash out the visible relaxer with water to remove the access product. [15]
    Straighten a Beard Step 11.jpg
    • Do not use shampoo as it will completely wash out the relaxer before it has finished breaking down the curls. [16]
    • If you feel any burning sensations before the 30 minutes has passed, immediately wash the visible relaxer out of your beard.
  6. Dry the beard with a blow dryer. Do not use a towel when doing this or you may remove the cream that is still actively working in your hair. Fully dry the beard with the blow dryer on a low heat setting. [17]
    Straighten a Beard Step 12.jpg
    • Comb the beard in a downward motion to begin the straightening.
  7. Straighten the beard with a flat iron to work out the curls. You will need to straighten the hair while the relaxer cream is still actively working before washing the cream completely out. This will make sure the beard is completely straightened and will remain that way after washing out the relaxer. Be sure to keep the flat at least half an inch away from your skin and straighten the hair in a downward motion.[18]
    Straighten a Beard Step 13.jpg
    • Do not let the flat iron sit in one place on the beard for more than 5 seconds as it can cause damage to your hair. [19]
  8. Wash out the remaining relaxer with beard shampoo. After you have straightened and shaped your beard with the active relaxer cream, wash your beard with shampoo to fully remove the relaxer cream. Wash your beard thoroughly to make sure all of the relaxer is out. [20]
    Straighten a Beard Step 14.jpg
    • You should repeat this process 2-3 times to be sure that the cream has been washed away.
    • The beard relaxer kit should come with a shampoo for this, but any beard shampoo will do.
  9. Apply beard conditioner and wait for 30 minutes. Heat can be damaging to the hair, especially when working out curls. Fully conditioning the beard will allow the hair to pick up any moisture it lost during flat-ironing.
    Straighten a Beard Step 15.jpg
    • The relaxer kit should also include a conditioner, but you can use your own beard conditioner as long as it is not leave-in.
  10. Rinse out the conditioner and towel try your beard. Pat your beard down with a towel until it is fully dry. Use a comb to style your beard and put some beard oil in it for extra moisture all day.
    Straighten a Beard Step 16.jpg


  • Stay away from harsh shampoos and soaps. These can cause damage to the beard hair, including dryness and split ends.
  • Use beard oils every day as a leave-in conditioner to add moisture to your beard and keep it soft.


  • Beard relaxers permanently straighten beards, but new beard hair will still grow in curly. If you want your new hair to be straightened, you will need to relax that new growth as well. When doing so, do not reapply the relaxer to the already straightened hair as over-exposure can make that hair brittle or dry.
  • If you want to return to your curly beard after using a relaxer, shave or cut your current straightened hair and allow your beard to grow out again.


[Edit]Quick Summary

How to Clean a Travel Pillow

Posted: 28 Feb 2020 08:00 AM PST

Travel pillows are a great accessory for taking on airplanes, trains, and buses. If you've used your travel pillow a lot, it might be getting dirty or collecting an odor. Before you clean your travel pillow, determine what material it is made out of. Most pillows, including those made from memory foam or microbeads, can be hand-washed with laundry detergent. If your pillow has a cover on it, simply take off the cover and wash it separately from the pillow itself. You can also sprinkle your pillow with baking soda and set it in the sun to freshen it.


[Edit]Washing a Memory Foam or Microbead Travel Pillow

  1. Fill a container with lukewarm water and of detergent. Find a bucket, tub, or sink that is big enough to hold your travel pillow. Fill it up about halfway with lukewarm water, or water that is just above . Add a mild detergent and gently mix it into the water. Make sure your container is full enough that your travel pillow will be fully submerged.[1]
    Clean a Travel Pillow Step 1 Version 2.jpg
    • You should always use mild detergent when you wash memory foam so that you don't harm your pillow.
    • If you use your travel pillow often, you should wash it twice a year.
  2. Hold your pillow underwater and gently squeeze it. Submerge your travel pillow fully and squeeze it in and out with your hands. Do not pull or rub at your travel pillow. Squeeze your pillow 5 to 10 times all over to fully clean it out.[2]

    • If there are any stains or spots on your pillow, pay special attention to them as you squeeze.
  3. Rinse your pillow out in cool water until the water is clear. Drain the container full of soapy water and carry your pillow over to a sink or tub. Use cool water that is just below room temperature to rinse all of the detergent out of your pillow. Keep rinsing until there is no soap residue coming out of the pillow anymore, or for about 5 minutes.[3]

    • Leaving soap residue inside of your pillow can harm it in the long run.
  4. Let your travel pillow dry in the sun. Set your travel pillow in a cool, dry spot where the sun can reach it. If you live in a humid climate, keep your pillow indoors. Leave it to dry until you can squeeze it without feeling any moisture, or for 1 to 2 days.[4]
    Clean a Travel Pillow Step 4 Version 2.jpg

[Edit]Cleaning a Travel Pillow in a Machine

  1. Check the tag to see if your pillow is machine washable. Some travel pillows cannot be washed in a washing machine. Look at the tag to see what the manufacturer recommends. If your pillow is dry clean or hand wash only, do not put it in the washing machine.[5]
    Clean a Travel Pillow Step 5 Version 2.jpg
    • Most memory foam and microbead pillows are not machine washable.
  2. Remove the cover if it has one. Some travel pillows have removable covers that come off with a zipper or snaps. If your pillow does, take the cover off carefully and set the pillow aside. Wash the cover separately from the pillow.[6]

    • Pillow covers help keep your travel pillow clean for a longer period of time.
  3. Wash the pillow or the cover in cold water on a low spin setting. Find the low-spin or delicate setting on your washing machine. Wash your travel pillow in cold water using a mild detergent. Don't let the pillow sit for too long after the cycle is over, or it could lose its shape.[7]
    Clean a Travel Pillow Step 7 Version 2.jpg
    • Putting your pillow on a high-spin setting could also cause it to lose its shape.
    • You can wash other clothing items with your pillow or cover.
  4. Dry it on low or let it sit in the sun for 1 day. If you need your travel pillow dried quickly, put it in the dryer for 1 hour on a low setting. If you don't need it dry that fast, set your pillow out in the sun to dry for at least 1 day. Squeeze your pillow to make sure it is dry on the inside, not just the outside.[8]
    Clean a Travel Pillow Step 8 Version 2.jpg
    • Some dryers have automatic moisture sensors. These won't work on travel pillows, since the sensors only pick up moisture on the outside of the pillow, not the inside.

[Edit]Removing Odors and Small Stains

  1. Let the pillow sit out in the sunlight for 2 to 3 days to remove smells. If your memory foam or microbead travel pillow is starting to smell bad, let it sit out in the fresh air for 2 to 3 days until the smell goes away. Make sure the pillow won't get wet or dirty in the spot that you put it outside. Unfold the pillow all the way before you set it in the sunlight.[9]
    Clean a Travel Pillow Step 9 Version 2.jpg
    • Mild odors, like the smell of sweat, will go away when the pillow is aired out.
  2. Sprinkle baking soda on the pillow and let it sit to get rid of smells. If your pillow is really stinky, spread a thin layer of baking soda over the entire thing. Let it sit outside in the sunlight for 2 to 3 days until the baking soda absorbs all of the odor. Brush the baking soda off of the pillow outside before you use it again.[10]
    Clean a Travel Pillow Step 10 Version 2.jpg
    • Baking soda absorbs odors, but it won't take away any stains or dirt.
  3. Rub detergent and warm water into small stains. If your travel pillow has a few small stains on it that don't warrant an entire wash, use a washcloth with warm water and 1 drop of mild laundry detergent to gently rub at the stain until it comes out. Rinse the stain with cool water until the water runs clear to get rid of the detergent.[11]


How to Know if Chicken Is Cooked

Posted: 28 Feb 2020 12:00 AM PST

Chicken is an appetizing, easy dish that can be paired with almost anything. Eating undercooked or raw chicken is incredibly dangerous and can make you very sick, so it's important to know when your food is safe to eat. Using a thermometer and inspecting your chicken is a sure-fire way to make sure that you are consuming safe, healthy, and delicious food.


[Edit]Using a Thermometer

  1. Choose a meat thermometer. Buying the right thermometer can make your cooking process much easier. To get the most accurate reading, a digital meat thermometer is best, but an analog thermometer can also be used.[1]

    Know if Chicken Is Cooked Step 1.jpg
  2. Calibrate your thermometer by reading a freezing temperature. Fill a large pitcher with ice and cold tap water, and mix thoroughly until the ice is distributed evenly. Place your thermometer into the pitcher of ice/water mixture and wait 30 seconds, or until the temperature reading stays on one number. Adjust your thermometer reading until it stays at .

    Know if Chicken Is Cooked Step 2.jpg
    • No matter what kind of thermometer you are using, making sure it is calibrated correctly is essential to ensure you get an accurate temperature reading.[2]
  3. Find the thickest part of the chicken. Testing the temperature of the thickest part of the meat ensures that your entire piece of chicken is cooked, and not just the thin portions. Identify which area of the chicken has the most meat on it, usually toward the center of the piece.[3]

  4. Insert your thermometer. Stab your thermometer into the thickest part of the chicken, making sure that the end of the thermometer stays near the middle of the piece. Wait about 30 seconds, or until your thermometer reading becomes steady.

    • Chicken should be cooked until it is .[4]
    • If your chicken is above these temperatures, it may be overcooked. If it is under these temperatures, it needs more cooking time.

[Edit]Noticing Visual Cues

  1. Test the firmness of the meat to make sure it is cooked. When cooking, chicken loses moisture and will tighten up. Raw chicken feels rubbery or wobbly, while cooked chicken should feel firm and spring back from your touch.[5]

    • A good example of what cooked chicken should feel like can be felt by keeping your hand limp and pressing your middle finger to your thumb.
  2. Check for white/clear juice to test whether your chicken is ready. While cooking, there is often juice that collects in the pan or dish that your chicken is cooking in. Cooked chicken juice will be a white/clear color, while uncooked chicken juice will be more pink.[6]

    • Checking the color of the juice to test whether meat is done is a trick that only works for chicken, and not other types of meat.
  3. Determine if your chicken has shrunk in size to see if it is cooked. Uncooked chicken holds a lot of moisture which is expelled during the cooking process. Meat also tends to shrink while cooking, because the muscle fibers contract. Your cooked chicken piece will be slightly smaller than the piece of uncooked chicken that you started with.

  4. Look for a white meat color to see if your chicken is cooked. Raw or undercooked chicken has a pink tone to it. By cutting open the thickest part of your chicken and looking at the color, you can identify whether your chicken needs more cook time or not. Cooked chicken will be white on the inside with no pinkish hue, and a golden brown on the outside.


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