You May Kiss Your Bride

With bridal season upon us, check out those gorgeous hairstyles and look fab on that special day. Whether you’re the bride or a bridesmaid, we got you.

 

Photo(s) Source(s): @dionnesmithhair

@charishair

@nappstar_nyc

@tajisalon

@papachichistyle

@dyroll_dydy

 

 

 

 

 

Africa Fashion Week London 2018

Long before the movie Black Panther came into our lives, the African Fashion Week London portrayed Africa in a positive light, by showcasing its fashion.

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The biggest annual African fashion event, in Europe, is back this year, for the 8th year! Get ready to taste Africa’s colourful and lively culture. AFWL will take place at the Freemasons’ Hall for two full days of catwalk shows, on the 10th & 11th of August 2018.

If you love African fashion, AFWL is the place to be. You’ll also get the opportunity to taste African delicious food and more. 

Read more here: www.africafashionweeklondon.com

Get your tickets here: https://bit.ly/2IT6UC3

 

Photo Source: @afwlondon

We Can Do It Too!

We live in a patriarchal society where nearly everything revolves around men. This is what we see in most aspects of society from politics to social organisations. However, certain societies are matriarchal such as the Bribri in Costa Rica and northern Panama.

For those who watched Black Panther, you must remember the all-women soldiers, the Dora Milaje. These powerful loyal women gave me so much life! They remind me of the fearless women soldiers from Dahomey (Benin), called the Mino or the Dahomey Amazons by some, who fought for and defended the palace, royalty and the country of Benin. Mino considered themselves stronger and braver than men.mino_dahomey_benin

In the 1850s, under the rule of King Gezo, the Mino fighting skills allowed the king to conquer the entire territory of Dahomey. These women were recruited from a variety of sources:

  • Volunteering
  • Fleeing poverty
  • Running away from marriage
  • Seeking glory
  • Fleeing slavery

Hotheaded daughters could also be enrolled by their fathers if they were considered more suited to fighting than motherhood.

After fighting bravely against the French, they were defeated and the Mino army vanished.

Although, the Mino died out, it’s interesting to see how women empowerment can be done at a high level (i.e. army). Their story is inspiring in the sense that they did not do what society expected them to do.

How To Use Chilli Oil For Hair Growth

There are many oils which promotes hair growth on the market, castor oil being one of them, and unless you try them you’ll never know if these work for you. Mother nature has provided us with so much natural resources but today, we’re going to focus on chilli oil.

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Chilli oil contains capsaicin which is an active ingredient in the chilli that is said to promote hair growth. A Japanese study has demonstrated that chilli worked for patients with alopecia. 

The reason being is that capsaicin activates certain receptors under the skin which helps increase the production of insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1). IGF-1 is a hormone that is similar to insulin, in structure and function. Basically, this protein helps in the process of cells reproduction and regeneration. IGF-1 also plays a role in the body’s creation of hair which is why it is recommended for hair growth.

If you want it to give it a go, please make sure to apply the oil on a small surface before, like any other products. People with a sensitive scalp might suffer from burning, irritation or/and inflammation.

 

 

Have you tried it? Who’s up for the challenge? Share your story.

Natural Fit Squad

I cannot lie I am a gym bunny…Training is my thing. I love nearly everything that involves leg workout, abs, weight lifting, pad work… Fitness has been an important part of my life those past few years and helped with stress and back pain. BUT when you have natural hair, working out can be frustrating. Most of those who participate in any type of physical activities will understand. I even contemplated cutting my fro off to make my life easier.

Here is my tip to refresh my curls after working out: steaming.

If your gym has a steaming room, you can steam your hair at the same time as relaxing your muscle. Use a leave-in conditioner to increase the moisture levels of your hair.

If you work out several times a week, make sure to give your hair some TLC. Deep conditioning with a steamer is also a great option. Use your favourite oil to help lock in the moisture on top. However, don’t abuse the steamer to avoid hygral fatigue.

Make sure to wash your hair on a regular basis as well to remove the dirt.

Share your gym tips below 🙂 

 

How Far Are You Willing To Go For The Body Of Your Dreams?

I came across Jenelle Salazar’s testimony (a fitness guru) who shared her butt injection story, on social media. There are so many other women who decided to go under the knife but Jenelle is one of the few who bravely admitted getting her body done. See the story here. 

You can do whatever you want to your body but please make sure to go to a REAL PROFESSIONAL! 

Self love is so important don’t lose your life over a bigger butt or breast.

 

 

 

 

 

Are Hair Steamers Good For Your Hair?

Dry hair is a common issue within the natural hair community. While doing some research online, I came across different options including hair steamers. They seem to be THE answer to dry hair but these should be used in moderation to avoid hygral fatigue.

What is it?5d1c61b838e9dadf79d8cf7c710c95c0

Hygral fatigue is when the cuticle swells and contracts excessively. This is caused by the continuous application of water to the hair after it has dried. Since the cuticle is not designed to open and close this frequently, it causes the strand to weaken and ultimately break. Hygral fatigue happens when you over moisturise your hair.

Here are quick tips to avoid these simple mistakes such as:

  • conditioning your hair overnight
  • re-applying water to your hair every day
  • not using enough protein treatments

Every good thing has a downside, even water, so use it with moderation. 

Ever suffered from hygral fatigue, share your story?

 

Happy New Year!

Happy new year all! Wishing you lots of love, happiness, great health and prosperity.

Make sure to take advantage of this year, keep growing and learning. Take any past lessons to better yourself. That business idea you have, make it happen; those new countries you want to visit, make it happen; that job you hate, change it… We tend to think way too much and to talk ourselves out of things we should be doing (negative self talk is real my friend!), but let’s change this now and step into 2018 #unbothered

 

Stay Warm In Style

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Urban Bliss Waterfall Coat With Wide Faux Fur Collar

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Asos Tall Faux Shearling Coat

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Asos Midi Coat In Plush Faux Fur

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Jane Norman Black Faux Fur Wrap Coat

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Melissa Collared Faux Fur Coat

STOP SLAVERY!

Can’t believe we are still talking about slavery in 2017. If you’re in the UK, please sign the petition https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/205476

 

Woman Power

I was reading the story of Jessica Florence, a 24 year old woman who beat breast cancer and I was so impressed by her courage and how she decided to fight back the disease. Read the full story here.

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Breast cancer can happen to any of us, it does does not care about skin colour or religion. This disease can appear under many forms, including:

  • a lump or area of thickened tissue in either breast that was not there before
  • a change in the size or shape of your breasts 
  • a rash on or around the nipple area
  • a change in the appearance of your nipple

It is important to get yourself checked, bring awareness and to support people with breast cancer.

 

Photo Source: @geneva_la_jade

 

 

The Colour Complex

Colourism: prejudice or discrimination in which people are treated differently based on the social meanings attached to skin colour.

Well before slavery, terms such as “darkness” and “black” had negative connotations. In a lot of stories and legends these terms were synonymous with evil. Slavery reinforced those beliefs since slaves with fairer skin tones had a better treatment compared to slaves with darker skin tones. Light-skin slaves tended to work indoors, doing the easier tasks. Dark-skin slaves used to stay outdoors doing the more difficult tasks.

This perception is still ingrained in our society. Brands taking advantage of this and making financial gains by promoting skin bleaching (*cough**cough*Nivea).

Even on social media, the amount of nonsense I have seen is just ridiculous and a lot is coming from us. “This is how light skin n***a” …; #darskin***asbelike…, “you’d be so beautiful if you were lighter” …TRASH, TRASH and TRASH.

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When you hear older generations saying about babies: “He’s so cute! Hope he’s going to keep his light skin” in the fear that the kid might become a little darker?! The worst thing is that this thinking is passed on from generation to generation. I do not have kids yet but I’ll make it my mission to make sure they love themselves regardless of their skin tone.

I am not saying that you should not embrace your skin tone. My point is you do not need to do it at the expense of another one. Black comes in so many different shades and we need to stop feeding into this nonsense.

Be the change you want to see in the world.

Topic Of The Day: Hair & Relationships

If your partner was against you changing your hair (i.e. shaving, transitioning, etc), would you stop yourself from doing it or would you still do it?

Yes or No.

Comment below.

Fenty Beauty In The UK

Tired of looking for brands that cater to your skin tone?

Rih rih got you.

Fenty Beauty has 40 shades and guess what? Fenty Beauty is available in the UK at Harvey Nichols!

rihanna makeup

Time to get that #Fentyface on! Share your shade.

 

Be The Change You Want To See

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Last year and unfortunately this year as well, there were a lot of bans in regards to natural hair. There were also a lot of stories around discrimination around afro hair especially in schools. The good news is that some people stepped up such as Professor Angela Onwuachi-Willig. This courageous woman with other professors (Trina Jones, Kimberley Norwood and Wendy Greene) have requested the termination of school bans in the US. So far, this initiative has generated a good level of response among academics.

It’s so refreshing to see women trying to change things and making moves. Not sure what I’m talking about? Have a read here.

 

Photo Source: @tellie01

 

 

Men…we got you

This one is for our men readers part of the beard gang but also for girlfriends/wives of men with beards.

Always wondered how you/your mister should take care of your/his beard? Stop looking, check Black Men Beard tutorial below.

Swimwear: Our Faves

Now that summer is around the corner (YAY!), slay on the beach with our selection of swimwear.

1,2,3 or 4? Tell us which one is your fave in the comment below.

 

 

 

Summer Is This You?

Guys, am I the only one excited about the weather?! BBQ season is fast approaching! It’s crazy how my mood switches when the weather gets warmer. All I want to do is listen to Afrobeat and dance, that’s basically it. Even in the streets, it gets so colourful. Everyone steps their fashion and hair game up, I just love it!

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Do you know what I am also excited about? The Afro Hair & Beauty LIVE 2017 is just few weeks away! For those who do not know what is it? It’s a 2-day event (28-29 May 2017) dedicated to beauty and fashion, where you can find advice from award winning hairdressers, make-up artists and beauticians. You can also find some of the industry’s favourite brands inspiring women to grow beautiful, natural hair from the inside out, such as Mielle Organics and Camille Rose. Want to treat your man too? Check out the Afro Man Space 😉

But wait there’s more… there are 4 pair of tickets for you guys to enjoy the show!

All you have to do is follow us on the blog and AHBL on @afrohairandbeautylive on Instagram OR follow this link on Twitter Use the hashtags #AHBL2017 and #naturalpride.

Winners will be announced on our social channels on Monday 22nd May, so tell your friends, sisters, aunties…

Good luck 😉

Phenomenal Woman

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.

I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size

But when I start to tell them,

They think I’m telling lies.

I say

It’s in the reach of my arms

The span of my hips,

The stride of my step,

The curl of my lips,

I’m a woman

Phenomenally.

Phenomenal woman,

That’s me.

By Maya Angelou

Do You Cater To Your Hair?

We’ve mentioned porosity earlier and its importance when it comes to finding the right products for your hair type. If you haven’t read the previous post, click here.

Knowing your hair type will affect your hair care regimen.screenshot_20170313-234529_1.jpg Whether you have low, normal or high porosity hair, you will need to update your routine and find what your hair responds to.

Low Porosity

With low porosity hair, you tend to have tight cuticles and your hair is resistant to water. It’s harder to get moisture to get into the hair shaft. In order to raise your cuticles, you will need to use heat after you apply your masks/oils/butters/deep conditionner. You can use a hot towel, hooded drier or even a shower cap. Make sure to apply products on damp hair so that any treatment penetrates the hair shaft. Product builds up can happen easily on hair with low porosity since products will just sit on your hair. In order to ensure your tresses are moisturised, use humectants as they will keep your mane hydrated. The most common ones are glycerine, honey and aloe vera gel.

Normal Porosity 

Normal porosity hair are quite easy to moisture since products tend to be absorded pretty easily, but…yes there is a but, using too much heat or chemicals can quickly turn, normal porosity hair into  high porosity hair.
Normal porosity hair has compact cuticles that easily let moisture enter in.

High Porosity 

Unlike the two other types, high porosity hair absorbs moisture pretty easily but loses it quickly. High porosity hair usually lacks shine and tend to be dry. Anti-humectants (shea butter, coconut oil, avocado oil, olive oil) and protein are ideal since they will ensure the hair remains moisturised and healthy.

Photo Source: @msangie426

 

The Porosity Test

Wonder what are the best products for your hair but not sure where to start? Knowing your hair porosity level is key. Don’t just rely on what others are using since these products might not be appropriate for your hair type.

What is porosity? Porosity is your hair ability to absorb and retain moisture. There are several ways to find out but my favourite one is the glass of water test. Fill in a glass of water and put a hair strand into it.

If your hair floats, you have low porosity hair. 

If your hair sinks slowly,then it has normal porosity.

If it sinks immediately, you have high porosity hair.

I have done the test and definitively have low porosity hair.

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Do the test and share your results below!

 

5 Misconceptions About Locs

Locs have been for a long time (and still is for some people) considered to be dirty, smelly, boring. I have to be honest I believed that locs were boring until I met and talked to people with locs.

Let’s go through some of the misconceptions about locs and why these shouldn’t put you off from locking your hair.

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  • Eww… locs are dirty

As any other natural hairstyles, locs require maintenance to be and remain healthy. Dirty hair never helped growing hair and that includes locs. Washing your hair regularly is a must to grow and maintain healthy hair. Further to this, not conditioning your hair is not recommended as breakage could happen.

  • You cannot do anything with locs, they’re boring 

This is far from the truth, you can do almost anything you want with them, from curling to colouring.

  • Locs are meant for Rastafarians

Another myth is that only certain people can wear locs. No you do not need to be Rastafarian or Jamaican to wear them. You don’t need to smoke either! Locs can be worn by any and everyone who wishes to do so.

  • “Shave your head if you get bored”

If for some reason, you decide that you do not wish to wear locs anymore. You do not need to cut them off as these can actually be combed out.

  • You can’t have locs if you want a proper job

Hair is not an indication on someone’s professional abilities. I understand that some companies have stricter company policy (i.e. high end stores) but do you really want to work for a company that base their judgment on physical appearance?

 

Photo Source: @rascamarao