All Articles Tagged "African American hair"

Mom On The Move: Interview With Queen Of Cuts Cynthia Meadows, Part 2

January 11th, 2016 - By Danielle Elaine
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Cynthia Meadows

Cynthia Meadows

Florida’s very own Cynthia Meadows has quickly gone from her hometown’s “Kitchen Beautician” to arguably one of the country’s headlining hair stylists. In just a short period of time, Cynthia has attracted the eyes of the hair industry’s who’s-who list with her exceptional cutting-edge skill, and signature blindfold haircuts.

We caught up with this mogul mom-on-the-go, to pick her brain about some of her styling tips and tricks and mompreneur secrets of her trade. In this part of our two-part interview, check out what Cynthia had to say about balancing her most important title: mom.

What is your daily life like being a business woman and mom?

My day starts with the morning wake up which normally starts around 5:00 a.m. with prayer, fighting with my daughter to get dressed and to eat breakfast at 6:00 a.m. then to the daycare to drop her off. Now, to change from mommy-mode to business woman is the easier part of my of my day. A day of management, doing clients, marketing strategies, training employees, budget cuts, counseling my clients, and daily team meetings. I work a lot of late nights as a business owner, which I don’t enjoy but the best part of my day is coming home to my daughter.

How do you find balance between cultivating your passion and family?

In order to cultivate balance, you have to determine what’s important to you and make it a priority in your life. When it comes to family-values, find a happy medium that balances the things you need in your life. In my business, I’ve learned to delegate. As my business grows, my staff will have to increase in order for me to balance my personal life and business. Above all, I am a mom first, and with the help of my traveling nanny I am able to maximize my time with my daughter and get business done.

Do you want more children ?

Yes! I’ve always wanted to be like Toni Braxton’s mom with all her girls around her all the time. I’ll love to have about four more kids someday.

cynthia meadows 1

What are some important lessons you aim to teach your children in your life’s pursuits?

I live by these top three life lessons in life:

  1. Love and forgive. The degree to which you are able to truly love as an expression of your character, not merely as a feeling, the more you will be willing to forgive. The more you are able to forgive, the more you will be free to love. Character is a much more accurate voice exclaiming who you are than popularity, personality or status. So let your moral character speak so loudly no one can hear the gossip spoken about you by lesser minds.
  2. Invest regularly in your own human capital, in the development of your ability and talents, in your knowledge and education. Learn every day. Don’t rely exclusively on formal modes of education. Learn on your own. Get excited about it. Read. Study. Challenge yourself. Develop. Improve.
  3. Let patience be your first response, kindness be your first reply, courage be your default setting, faith be your first inclination, curiosity be your first question, perseverance be your longest answer, gratitude be your spontaneous condition and love be your first, final and only method.

I want to be a living example to my daughter–and future children–by showing them that anything is possible through faith and hard work. I don’t believe in excuses, just results. I have never worked for anyone but myself, not many people can say that.

What’s next for Cynthia as a mom and business woman?

As a mom, I’m just trying to get my toddler potty trained (laughs). As for A’Bliss, I am looking into franchising. I’ve been staking out property in top cities around the country, as well as working toward expanding my brand with a natural hair product and cosmetics line. I am also excited about providing opportunities to educate upcoming stylist. Within the next year I plan on hosting classes for those looking to continue their education, and enhance their skill set. 

What would you say is a great go-to style for busy moms like yourself?

Sew-ins or pixie cuts are a great style opt for any busy mom on the go. With a shortcut you can just wax it up and go.

How can a natural mom save time, and maintain healthy hair in the midst of a busy week?

My best advice is moisture! You hair needs moisture daily to maintain healthy hair. Incorporate natural hair remedies to your hair care regimen like mayonnaise for proteins, castor oil, eggs etc.

What are a few tricks you use on your daughter to promote hair growth?

There’s no magical trick to making hair grow, because mostly it’s a matter of genetics. There are however, some things you can do to help the natural process along and you may actually see your child’s hair grow faster. Adding certain foods to can actually promote hair growth and give children the nourishment their bodies need.

  • Peanuts, corn, and spinach contain vitamin E, which stimulates hair growth.
  • Folic acid, found in foods like asparagus, peas, citrus fruits, and turkey, will help promote hair growth by strengthening strands so they don’t break off prematurely.
  • Drinking water—four to six glasses a day—will keep hair hydrated.
  • Vitamin B produces keratin, a protein that strengthens strands. It’s found in bananas, whole-grain cereals, rice and eggs.
  • Dairy products like skim milk and yogurt—as well as broccoli and strawberries–are great sources of calcium, an important mineral for hair growth.

Many women wear braids and style their children in braids as a protective style, and because of the styles low-maintenance. What are some ways one can reverse breakage on the hairline from braids? What are some methods of prevention?

Many people are resorting to braids as a protective, low-maintenance style. I would highly recommend leaving the hairline out with braids and avoiding extra-tight braids that causes so much tension on the hair, causing it to break off.

What are some great tips and tricks to achieving a quick and cute style (using Paul Mitchell products) for your daughter?

For my daughter’s hair, I use the kid’s line which has a shampoo/conditioner with a detangling spray. I also use a Paul Mitchell Curls Twirl Around Crunch-Free Curl Definer cream to keep her natural coils tamed all day.

What’s a great Paul Mitchell styling product for the natural mom on-the-go?

A great PM styling product for a natural mom on-the-go is their curly hair products. They are a lightweight conditioning treatment that hydrates, detangles, tames frizz and won’t weigh the hair down throughout the day.

Click here for Part 1 of this interview where Cynthia talks about her life as a business woman.

Mom On The Move: Interview With Queen Of Cuts Cynthia Meadows, Part 1

January 8th, 2016 - By Danielle Elaine
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Cynthia Meadows

Cynthia Meadows

 

Florida’s very own Cynthia Meadows has quickly gone from her hometown’s “Kitchen Beautician” to arguably one of the country’s headlining hair stylists. In just a short period of time, Cynthia has attracted the eyes of the hair industry’s who’s-who list with her exceptional cutting-edge skill, and signature blind fold haircuts.

We caught up with this mogul mom-on-the-go, to pick her brain about some of her styling tips and tricks and momprenuer secrets of her trade. In this part of our two-part interview, check out what Cynthia had to say about her Bronner Brothers performance, being a Paul Mitchell Insider and establishing herself as an influencer.

How old were you when you knew you had a gift for hair?

Cynthia Meadows:  My love affair with hair begun at 14 years of age. I started braiding hair in my mother’s kitchen. I was very well known for braided styles throughout my community. By the time I was 16 I had my first job working in a salon.

How did you arrive at the blindfolded hair cuts? Who was the first person to actually let you try it?

(Laughs) The first person to let me try it was one of my clients. Obviously she was nervous, but she trusts me. We just went for it and she ended up loving it! I was looking to do something different, something extreme to really give me an edge and help me to stand out on stage. Cutting is what I know, it’s who I am.

cynthia meadows queen of cuts

 

You have accomplished so much in the last year, how do you manage to stay focused?

I manage to stay focused by eliminating distractions around me, and by staying surrounded by people who can only help elevate me by keeping me grounded.

What are some of the qualities about you, your brand, and styling techniques that make you an influencer?

Some of the qualities about me that makes me a great influencer is my personality and good character. I am also a developer of cutting edge trends.  My brand is a great influence in itself due to the story behind the brand. Everyone that knows me, knows my beginning and my strong work ethic to get to this point in my career.

cynthia meadows 1

What do you plan to achieve for yourself and Paul Mitchell as a PMInsider?

I plan to continue to build more of a relationship within the brand and someday become a platform artist.

What are some of your favorite Paul Mitchell products to use?

My salon, A’Bliss Studios, is a Paul Mitchell  based salon, meaning we use 90 percent of Paul Mitchell products.  My absolute favorite product to use is their Marula Oil line, which is a luxury hair care line that nourishes and hydrates the hair.

What inspiration can upcoming stylist draw from the PM brand, and their products?

Some of the inspirations upcoming stylists can draw from the Paul Mitchell  brand is knowing the history behind Paul Mitchell. You have to understand where the brand came from, how it was built, and who the brainchild is behind the product. Every stylist is inspired by either Paul Mitchell or Vidal Sassoon, which are two of the industry’s biggest million dollar companies. Their product line is a major inspiration to anyone who aspires to have their own product line one day.

What would you say it takes for one to become an influencer in any profession?

One of the most crucial skills an entrepreneur needs for success is influence. Without it, failure is inevitable. For the entrepreneur, it’s arguably the most important ability to possess. The need to influence others is unavoidable, and unfortunately, it’s not very easy. Some key steps in becoming an influencer in any profession it to be able to motivate people, have actionable information, and develop new ways to become an innovator or to recreate yourself.

Check back for Part 2 of this interview where Cynthia talks about her life as a mom.

 

What Does The WEN Lawsuit Mean For Black Women?

December 14th, 2015 - By Charing Ball
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Photo Credit: Sephora.com

Photo Credit: Sephora.com

A class-action lawsuit aimed at a popular co-washing system might have many Black natural hair wearers ready to snatch the wig of the nearest White girl for, once again, messing a good thing up for us…

According to The Daily Beast, nearly 200 women have signed up for a class action lawsuit against WEN hair care alleging that it failed to warn consumers that use of the product may result in temporary and permanent hair loss.

More specifically, the news site reports:

Billed as a sulfate-free alternative to shampoo, WEN promises to “take the place of your shampoo, conditioner, deep conditioner, detangler, and leave-in conditioner.”

But the cult favorite products have also attracted controversy. Over the years, horror stories from customers have circulated online—on WEN product forums and sites including Pissed Consumer and Amazon—about WEN’s 5-in-1 Cleansing Conditioners causing hair to come out in handfuls, as well as clogged drains and bald spots.

Now, more than 200 women in 40 states have joined a class action lawsuit against WEN by Chaz Dean and infomercial giant Guthy-Renker in California Federal Court. They claim that the WEN products can cause severe and possibly permanent damage to hair, including significant hair loss to the point of visible bald spots, hair breakage, scalp irritation, and rash.”

At the center of the lawsuits appears to be WEN’s Sweet Almond Mint basic kit. The kit bills itself as an all-natural mix of botanicals. The cleansing conditioner in particular includes such ingredients as:

Water, Glycerin, Cetyl Alcohol, Cetearyl Alcohol, Stearamidopropyl Dimethylamine, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract, Prunus Serotina (Wild Cherry) Bark Extract, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Extract, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Vegetable Oil (Olus Oil), Panthenol, Butylene Glycol, Behentrimonium Methosulfate, Polysorbate 60, PEG-60 Almond Glycerides, Amodimethicone, Citric Acid, Menthol, Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Fragrance, Hexyl Cinnamal, Limonene, Linalool, Geraniol, Benzyl Benzoate, Hydroxycitronellal, Hydroxyisohexyl 3-Cyclohexene Carboxaldehyde.

However as the Daily Beast article notes, many of those ingredients are widely used in the hair care industry, with exception of hydroxycitronella, which is currently banned in the European Union for being toxic to the immune system.

And while no one knows for sure what ingredient in WEN is allegedly causing hair loss (the article quotes experts who said that determining the root causes of hair loss in women in very complicated and include many factors from genetics to hormonal changes to prolonged flat-iron use), the law firm representing the plaintiffs in the case estimates that as many as “in the thousands or tens of thousands” could eventually be named in the lawsuit.

It should be mentioned that the plaintiffs featured in many of the articles about the lawsuit (including this USA Today article from earlier this year when the lawsuit was announced and features pictures of some of the women alleging WEN caused their hair loss) appear to be non-Black women. This is important to note as the WEN system, which allows you to clean your hair with conditioner, has been marketed as a product made for all hair types and textures.

Likewise, it has become very popular among Black women with natural hair who are looking for alternatives to harsh sulfates and other chemicals that are in standard shampoos and known to cause damage to our hair.

And although the Daily Beast article said that there are negative reviews of the product all over the internet, the article also highlights this interesting quote from a hair stylist who says:

“WEN seems to be good for certain hair types, especially those that are coarse or frizzy,” says Kelsey Smart, a stylist at Fox & Jane salon in New York. “But for women with fine hair, it becomes more important for the scalp to stay really clean—otherwise, product can build up and lead to breakage.”

In fact, my own quick Google query for negative reviews of the WEN hair care line within the Black online hair care community has resulted in unrelated complaints about its price (it’s too expensive) and double-billing.

I bring this up because over the last few years we have seen hair and beauty companies, including Black-owned businesses, steer away from marketing to Black women specifically for a more universal customer base.

From a marketing standpoint, it is genius. Black women in particular have long felt excluded from the mainstream health and beauty industry. Therefore, who doesn’t like the idea of a product that can be used by all hair types?

But is that really realistic? More specifically, is there really such a thing as a universal product that addresses the needs of all textures and types?

Arguably, WEN could just be a product that is more “botanically” aligned with African-American and other ethnic hair textures. And if the allegations are true, this entire lawsuit could have been avoided if it had just sought to cater more to its real customer base while telling Becky and ’em to go elsewhere – just like I am told with about 80 percent of the hair care products for “women” on the shelf.

But I understand, there is little money in that…

I Had To Wear A Wig To Get A Job

November 17th, 2015 - By Christine Mwaturura
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Shutterstock

Shutterstock

People are superficial. Time and time again studies have proved that most people (whether consciously or unconsciously) make judgments about other people based on physical appearance. How this manifests in the workplace is that unattractive people often get the short end of the stick. Economist Daniel Hamermesh reveals in his book Beauty Pays: Why Attractive People Are More Successful that, “…the attractive are more likely to be employed [and] receive more substantial pay…” This research has been out for a while, but I hadn’t given much thought to the implications of the findings in my personal life until I had to re-enter the job search market.

Job Searching With Natural Hair

I typically wear my hair in dreadlocks as a matter of convenience and have done so for the past three years. So when I started meeting with recruiters and interviewing for a new job, the thought of changing my hair for the sole purpose of landing a job didn’t even occur to me. Curiously, even though I felt that I was a great candidate, I wasn’t getting any call-backs. Frustrated and annoyed with my lack of progress, I called my sister to vent about my job search woes. Her advice: wear a wig. Really? So my stellar resume, exceptional work experience and superstar personality meant nothing? I refused. I was adamant – I would rise against the tide of corporate conformity!

Fast forward to a few weeks later, still no call-backs. I started thinking about a recent experience that I’d had in my local grocery store when a young white girl excitedly pointed at me, turned to her father and said, “Daddy, daddy look! That girl has funny hair!” Maybe my sister was right after-all. So I reluctantly pulled on a wig for my next interviews, and rather coincidentally, I started getting call-backs. Now, this obviously could just mean that I got better at interviewing. But on the other hand, maybe there was something more vile underpinning this coincidence…

Black Hair and Discrimination

In an episode of the Stuff Mom Never Told You podcast, Lori L.Tharp discusses how negative perceptions about natural Black hair in Western societies stems from the racist slavery era. During slavery time, it was often assumed that a Black person who had lighter skin and less kinky hair texture had some white blood mixed in them. These slaves would often be treated better than their darker-skinned and kinkier-haired counterparts by the slave masters, as they were thought to be smarter and more teachable because of the white blood running through their veins. Kinky hair textures weren’t even referred to as hair – rather as wool, effectively dehumanizing Black people. Thankfully, things today are certainly not to that degree of racism, however, vestiges of slavery remain within our modern culture. The story we generally see in the media is that natural Black hair is not worth seeing – it’s something that ought to be covered up. It’s unattractive. When it comes to the workplace, some companies even go so far as to disallow natural hairstyles for Black women under the company dress code. Podcast host Cristen Conger sums this up quite precisely as “…racism under the guise of professionalism.”

Dreadlocks, especially, come with a host of negative stereotypes. We all remember Giuliana Rancic’s unfortunate comment about Zendaya Coleman’s locs smelling like weed and patchouli. While Giuliana might have meant this as a joke (albeit in poor taste), I have no doubt that there are some people who genuinely believe that all dread-heads are druggies.

So, if dreadlocks are a stigmatized hairstyle, and research has shown that it only takes a tenth of a second to form a first impression of a stranger, plus attractiveness is one of leading traits assessed the quickest by people and is known to impact success in the workplace, then does the intersection of all these pieces of information mean that I had been knocked out of contention for getting the job before I’d even opened my mouth in the interview? I wonder.

What Now?

After landing a job I continued to wear a wig to work so as to not ruffle any feathers or distract people from the quality of my work. I’ve worn wigs in the past but never for a full eight hours per day, five days a week. I hated it. Taking off my wig when I got home was the best part of my day – like exhaling after holding your breath for a long time. I lasted for a few months doing this but then couldn’t do it any longer. I’m back to wearing my locs full-time and accept the risk that some ignorant people may not look favorably on my hair styling choice, but at least I’m comfortable and no longer feel like an impostor.

Curl Talk: 5 Products For Your Daughter’s Natural Tresses

September 2nd, 2015 - By Allyson Leak
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Shutterstock

Shutterstock

Curly, kinky, and wavy hair needs a lot of moisture. It takes the moisture from the natural oils in the hair a longer time to get down the hair shaft because of the beautiful twists and turns of the hair pattern. And this can cause dry hair and breakage and that’s why it’s essential to replenish the hair with great products. Here are some great products to try for your daughter’s natural tresses.

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Bee Mine Botanical Moisturizing Shampoo

Bee Mine Botanical Moisturizing Shampoo is loaded with botanical extracts to gently cleanse hair, remove residue and moisturize while enhancing natural shine.  It leaves hair touchably soft & smooth and will nourish the scalp and strengthen the hair without stripping or weighing it down.  It will cleanse, hydrate and quench your dry hair. Apply a small amount to wet hair gently massage to create a lather.  Rinse thoroughly repeat if needed.  Follow up with conditioner.

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SheaMoisture’s Mango & Carrot Kids Extra-Nourishing Conditioner

SheaMoisture’s Mango & Carrot Kids Extra-Nourishing Conditioner softens and smoothes children’s hair, making it easy to detangle and work out knots. It helps nourish and strengthen hair while protecting against breakage. The mango butter  is a moisture-rich emollient that leaves the hair feeling silky smooth. The carrot oil nourishes hair, helping to prevent breakage and promote growth. And the orange blossom  soothes sensitive scalps. After shampooing, apply a dollop to wet hair. Gently run fingers through hair to distribute evenly. Rinse well with warm water.

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African Pride Dream Kids Quick Bounce Detangling Pudding

African Pride Dream Kids Quick Bounce Detangling Pudding’s intense moisturizing properties help manage tangles, instantly improve softness, and boost shine in naturally curly, wavy, kinky-coily hair. The smooth creamy feather light kids formula contains the finest Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Herbal Extracts used for generations to help strengthen and protect hair. And it’s formulated exclusively for children’s delicate hair and scalp.

 

 

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Spectrum Organic Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is great for penetrating the hair with its vitamin E, vitamin K, protein, fatty acids and iron. Not only does it moisturize but it prevents hair breakage by sealing the hair follicle. It has also been known to eliminate dandruff and promotes shiny hair. To use as a deep conditioner apply to damp clean hair in sections and comb through from root to tip. Pin it up and leave it on for half an hour then rinse and create your natural style.

MirabellePlum-LIC

Carols Daughter Mirabelle Plum Leave In Conditioner

The Carol’s Daughter Mirabelle Plum Leave In Conditioner is a  lightweight, silicone-free moisturizer that detangles, strengthens and adds weightless body to lifeless strands. Made with Mirabelle Plums plus a fusion of oils, it intensely rehydrates and restores hair so it appears visibly stronger and fuller. Now you can quench your hair’s thirst for ultimate health without weighing it down. The powerful ingredients include: Mirabelle Plum, Biotin, grapeseed oil, aloe leaf juice, and sweet almond oil.

 

#TeamEdges: Tips For Preventing Hair Breakage After Baby

August 24th, 2015 - By Allyson Leak
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hair growth

Corbis

We’ve all seen that woman whose edges are completely gone and her hairline is receding. Maybe you’ve been through it yourself. It could happen to any of us if you constantly wear weaves, have significant hair loss after you have a baby and if your hormones are out of whack.

Whether they are a result of genetics, a health condition or excessive pulling and weave wear and tear, there’s still a way to save thinning edges.

Here are the best ways we’ve found for preventing hair breakage:

Scalp Massage With Essential Oils

Unless you have a diagnosed skin or hair issue, then your thin edges can grow back. The hair follicles and blood circulation need to be rejuvenated. The first thing you need to do is take out your weave for a little while to let your edges breathe. Afterward, start a gentle massage routine twice a day and rub in small circular motions in the problem area. Below are some essential oils that help stimulation. The rosemary and peppermint oil should not be used alone, but rather, mixed with a carrier oil like olive or coconut oil.

Rosemary oil is known to increase blood flow and stimulate the hair follicles, which can lead to longer stronger hair. It works great for dandruff too.

Peppermint oil gives a cooling /tingle effect and purifies the scalp.

Castor oil consists of a triglyceride of fatty acids containing vitamin E, omega-6 fatty acids, minerals, and proteins, which all help with hair regrowth and hair loss.

Coconut oil is rich in vitamins and minerals and has been used as a hair oil for thousands of years, keeping locks strong and nourished.

Aloe Vera is not an oil, but the gel-like substance contains an enzyme that helps promote new hair growth for some and can be applied directly to the scalp.

Vitamin E oil is great for skin and hair. It has an antioxidant that helps with scalp circulation.

Unclog Your Follicles

It’s important to get rid of dandruff and bacteria, which can clog the pores. Make sure you are washing your hair at least once or twice a week and gently scrub your scalp well.

As a result, your hair will be able to breathe, and this can aid in growth.

Prevention

If you wear a lace-front weave, then make sure your hair that is cornrowed underneath isn’t too tight. However, if you tend to leave the top and front of your hair out with a partial weave, then you are probably manipulating your edges too much since that’s what’s left out. In the constant effort to blend your hair with the weave, you could be doing quite a bit of damage to it. Try your hardest to stay away from the heat for at least a month. If you can’t do that, then minimize it to twice a week. And make sure that you are wearing a satin or silk scarf at night to protect your edges.

 

Short Hair, We Care!: Jennifer Hudson’s Super Short Hairdo

August 14th, 2015 - By Kweli Wright
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images: COURTESY JENNIFER HUDSON

Singer and actress Jennifer Hudson revealed a much shorter hairstyle on Instagram — and we’re loving it!

“All black every thang! Who needs hair, when u serving face!,” she captioned the shot on her feed Friday morning.

We’ve always loved mama J-Hud’s pixie styles over the years. But with this hot new look is serving confidence and ease!

jennifer hudson instagram 2

The award-winning actress and skillful singer is taking her talents to Broadway this fall, playing Shug Avery in The Color Purple. We’re sure this style will make those wardrobe and wig changes that much easier.

Would you make a chop like this?

It Happened To Me: My Daughter’s Teacher Did Her Hair

July 23rd, 2015 - By Rich
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A few month’s ago, a photo was circulating on the internet of a little girl, who had just gotten her hair done by her teacher. To no one’s surprise this garnered reactions on both ends of the spectrum from the cyber world. As a mother, I was torn in my opinion of the situation, with no reason to think it could ever happen to me. As I read through the responses of Facebook friends, and their friends I thought, If I was a teacher, and a student came into class with her hair matted and linted, yes I would probably take it upon myself to spruce her up. However, in regards to my daughter this was not the case. Last Thursday, after a fresh hair wash, and slightly running behind I decided against my better judgment to let my daughter go to school with a headband and her curls out. BIG MISTAKE.

Thursday afternoon, like every day I went to pick up my daughter from her schools playground. As she ran toward me, all I could do was mouth to myself, “wtf?.” Seeing my reaction her teacher scurred behind her, quickly offering an exonerating explanation as to why my daughter didn’t look the way she did only a few hours earlier. “I did her hair, I hope you don’t mind?! She said she was hot.” I was furious. My blood was boiling, and there were no nice words I could find. I offered a limp smile, and could barely utter, “it’s fine.” I was fuming. My daughter’s hair had been brushed, with whose brush? I couldn’t tell you, parted, and braided in plaits, and embellished with rubber bands and barrettes, out of the teachers own supply.

After about 30 minutes to an hour, I called the school and spoke with the director and asked that Lyric’s hair not be touched by anyone, at all, for any reason. She assured me she would talk to the teachers, but I could tell she really didn’t care. For days I debated with my cousin, a former daycare teacher about the violation, boundary infringement, and the subliminal message being taught to my daughter. My cousin argued the teacher had no ill intentions toward my child, and that she thought she was doing a good thing. She assured me her actions meant that Lyric was a favorite in the school, and now that I have made this an issue they will probably treat her differently now.

While I’m 100 percent sure the teacher had no ill intentions when she decided to do my childs hair, but more so just wanted to get her hands in some Black hair. Against my better judgment, I assumed the unspoken rule about not touching Black hair was well known. Needless to say, no matter what the circumstances may be, no matter how tired I am, that hair gets braided down daily! I refuse to allow my child to be mislead into believing her beauty, and worth are defined by what pleases the pale faces of the world. I am a patron of the facility not for beauty treatments, but to first educate, and second care for my child. Unfortunately, I have stigmatized myself as “that mom”, and prayerfully my daughter doesn’t suffer of any ill treatment because of this.

Would I feel as strongly about this situation had her teacher been Black, and decided to do her hair? Nope, because to me that would of been a sister looking out, a homegirl hook up because of the unspoken understanding all Black people share. Is that biased, ignorant, racist? Call it what you want, but because of the history of the Black body, in relation to White people, (ownership, and exhibition) I will never be ok with White hands in my childs hair.

What would you do if your daughter’s teacher did her hair?

Have you had a tricky situation that needed to be addressed at your child’s school? How did you handle it?

When Is Your Baby’s Hair Going To Change?

June 26th, 2015 - By Rich
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When I was pregnant with both of my daughters, I had heartburn most hours of the day — straight-up torture. With my first, I could eat a piece of dry toast, turn to the side and feel a wave of acid rising from the pits of my stomach. It wasn’t normal. I was convinced. Family members insisted, “Ooh wee! That baby’s gonna have a headful of hair!” I groaned, living in the moment, as I was the one suffering with each morsel consumed. When she was born, I saw that maybe that was some truth to the myth, my little girl emerged from the womb plump and rosy-cheeked with thick, curly, dark brown hair.

“That baby looks Spanish,” her father quipped a few days after. I rolled my eyes at him, “Ma says I had hair like that as a newborn too.” In the following days, houseguests came through to poke and prod at our first daughter in amazement. She was born light-skinned, with little slits for eyes and all that hair sitting atop her head like a winter hat. She hated when I washed and combed through it. She still does nine years later, which I find hilarious.

I was still relaxing my hair then but I’d decided years before having kids that chemical straightening would be their choice once they got to high school. As for me, I read up on natural hair care and vowed to keep mineral oil and other no-no’s out of my baby’s scalp. Her hair kept that texture until she was closer to one-year-old, which is the norm I believe.

She’d browned up, closer to her natural skin tone, which pleased her dad most of all because he liked to half-joke that when they were out together alone, running errands, people tended to stare “like I kidnapped her or something.” Her hair had begun to kink-up which pleased me most of all because I could start with my haircare regimen for her and stick to it since it was unlikely that my baby’s hair texture was going to change again anytime soon.

My own mother was all about adding waxy hair grease to my baby’s head and pulling her hair up from the roots to make her more “presentable.” To who though? It was the Blue Ivy Treatment, from my own family. By the time our little girl was two-years-old, it seemed everyone in the world had a tip or a suggestion about what I should be doing to and using on her hair. It was like I had an entire comment section in my face at family gatherings. I was Bey and she was Blue. And all I wanted to do was holler, “Don’t y’all have your own damn kids?”

It didn’t happen the same way with our second daughter. She was a chunky one too out of the womb, darker, with a headful of hair but her’s was bone straight. It was amazing. They looked alike but the details were so different. Down to the difference in hair textures, even as newborns.

She’s four-years-old now and while her hair has curled up a little, it’s been years of her dad asking innocently, “When is her hair gonna change?” The little one takes her hair from her grandfather who has a soft, loose curl. Who can ever tell with Black kids? We’re all so mixed up in our heritage but I’m pretty sure it’s the fact that she’s so dark-skinned that makes most people doing her hair, raise an eyebrow. Others, without a filter, will ask if I relax her hair. “Why your first baby — the brown-skinned one — got kinkier hair?” I usually act like I don’t hear the question. I just take care of my little girls and the hair that grows out of their respective heads, accordingly.

Summer Regimen Solved: 7 Best Hair Care Products for Heat

June 8th, 2015 - By Rich
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With summer rapidly approaching, we must prepare of tresses for various situations and  weather conditions. While planning our very own vacation, as well as placing our hair on vacation with a great protective style..we must be sure to keep our hair moisturized and healthy during this time. While enjoying the sun, saltwater and chlorine this time of year, it’s best to keep your moisturized and conditioned to stay strong against any possible damage or harm. Using the proper products to keep our hair safe and secure during this season is very vital to its continuous health.

We all have our favorite hair care products that we just can’t seem to live without. As the seasons change, sometimes the rotation of your favorite products must do so as well. While enjoying the summer months, the fear of damaging your hair should be the least of your worries! Preparing to beat the heat and protect your crown is very easy when you’re well-prepared.

Summer Regimen Solved: 7 Best Hair Care Products