All Articles Tagged "black hair"

She Tried It: Shea Moisture’s 100% Pure Oils Line

September 21st, 2016 - By Veronica Wells
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She Tried It: Shea Moisture's 100% Pure Oils Line

It’s amazing the characteristics people ascribe to you based on the way you wear your hair. From the first few months of going natural, I learned that people interpreted my TWA to mean all types of things. I was suddenly militant, mean, funky, or a lesbian. When I transitioned to locs, people assumed that I was earthy, that I smoked weed and used fruits and berries in my hair. At first, the last one confused me. Why would locs mean I use fruits and berries? It would be years before I understood that the assumption wasn’t so far off. The best types of products for my natural hair, my locs specifically, are natural products, especially oils.

The quest to keep my locs moisturized is a never-ending battle I fight and, if I’m being honest, often lose. But I feel like with Shea Moisture’s new line of 100 percent pure oils, I might have found the secret weapon. I’ve been using Jamaican Black Castor oil on my scalp and strands for years but never have I been able to pump it, so easily out of the bottle. Most of the time it’s a game of trying to temper my hand so too much doesn’t come gushing out. But with Shea Moisture’s pure oils, you can pump directly onto your hand or scalp and rub or smooth in from there.

Naturally, shea butter is a part of the collection. And while I could use it on my hair, I prefer it on my skin. Anyone who knows me well, knows I often praise the benefits of Shea butter. Unlike the kind you can buy off the street on 125th in Harlem or some Black/African festival, the shea butter in this collection is melted down already, so you can just slide it on. Without the feverish rubbing in between your palms, you’ll have to find some other way to get your arm workout.

Another one of my favorite oils, which I’d never tried before is the Baobab one. I was excited about it because I’ve tasted Baobab juice and it’s delicious. Still, I didn’t think about what the oil would do for my hair. What I found was that it’s not as heavy as the Castor Oil but it still has the same effect. It produces that soft, non crunchy feel. But unlike Castor oil, it doesn’t have a smell neither I–nor my currently pregnant cousin–can detect.

Perhaps, one of the best thing about this collection, aside from the miracles they work on your hair, is that the bottle sizes make them perfect for travel. Recently, I went to a wedding in California and I was able to take four bottles on the plane with me. I hate checking bags. Being that California is so dry, my skin and hair were grateful for the shea on my skin, the Jamaican Black Castor oil in my scalp, and the baobab on my hair.


If you’d like to try Shea Moisture’s pure oils for yourself, you can purchase them here.

Veronica Wells is the culture editor for She is also the author of “Bettah Days.”

Instagram Users Respond To Legal Dreadlock Ban With Empowering #Professionallocs

September 21st, 2016 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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We told you yesterday that a federal appeals court, in a 3-0 decision, ruled that choosing not to employ someone over their choice to wear dreadlocks is not a form of racial discrimination. So an Alabama insurance claims processing company’s decision to rescind a young woman’s job offer due to her refusal to get rid of her locs was legal. However, I think we all know that just because something is legal doesn’t mean it’s necessarily right.

So, quite a few people took to social media to speak out against the decision by posting images of themselves, at work, wearing their locs. And trust me, there is nothing “messy” about them. Check out the best responses to the appeals court decision via the hashtag, #professionallocs. And be sure to follow one of my favorite Instagram pages, @LocLivin, as they encouraged people to share their images.

Appeals Court Rules That Employees Don’t Have Right To Wear Dreadlocks And Banning Them Isn’t Racial Discrimination

September 20th, 2016 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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It seems that if you’re trying to get a job in this day and age, you might really have to be concerned about your hair choices. A federal appeals court recently ruled in a 3-0 decision that refusing to hire someone because they wear locs is not a form of racial discrimination.

It all started when a woman named Chastity Jones was offered a job at an Alabama insurance claims processing company as a customer service representative. She was told that the job was hers under one condition: She would need to get rid of her dreadlocks. They reportedly stated that locs “tend to get messy.” When Jones chose not to alter her hair for the position, the company decided to withdraw their offer. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission was made aware of the situation, saw it as racial discrimination, and chose to act on her behalf, starting in 2013.

The EEOC noted that “prohibition of dreadlocks in the workplace constitutes race discrimination because dreadlocks are a manner of wearing the hair that is physiologically and culturally associated with people of African descent.”

However, Circuit Judge Adalberto Jordan, who wrote the appellate opinion, made it clear that the court wasn’t ready to change the definition of racial discrimination in terms of employment to be not just about bias due to biological factors, but also bias in terms of the treatment of certain cultural characteristics attributed to races.

“We would be remiss if we did not acknowledge that, in the last several decades, there have been some calls for courts to interpret Title VII more expansively by eliminating the biological conception of ‘race’ and encompassing cultural characteristics associated with race,” he wrote. Title VII is of course a law that “prohibits employers from discriminating against employees on the the basis of sex, race, color, national origin, and religion.”

Jordan continued: “As far as we can tell, every court to have considered the issue has rejected the argument that Title VII protects hairstyles culturally associated with race.”

Jordan would go on to say that a change in the definition of racial discrimination would need to take place “through the democratic process,” not through the courts. As pointed out by The Wall Street Journal, the appellate court’s judgment is in line with the ruling from U.S. District Judge Charles R. Butler Jr. in 2014, a decision that also sided against the EEOC.

A spokesman for the EEOC said that they believe both courts ruled wrong and are “reviewing our options.” However, Helgi Walker, one of the lawyers for the insurance claims processing company in question said this second ruling is a reaffirmation of the fact that employers “may establish and enforce race-neutral grooming policies.”

Marc Jacobs Offers An Explanation For His First Problematic Response

September 19th, 2016 - By Veronica Wells
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Marc Jacobs dreadlocks

(AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

Last week, we reported about the faux locs debacle at the Marc Jacobs show. We also mentioned that when folks called Jacobs out on his faux pas, the designer offered a response that seemed to make a bad situation worse.

You can read the full thing here; but basically he said that he doesn’t see color, love is the answer and funny how no one cries cultural appropriation when women of color straighten their hair.


After that not-so-well-thought-out response, the internets, including this video:

Black Twitter, came for him.

Once he realized he was alienating entirely too many people, Jacobs toned it all the way down and issued a less defensive response.

Obviously, he still doesn’t get the point. If I ever had the money to afford Marc Jacobs, the boycott would be on.

Veronica Wells is the culture editor for She is also the author of “Bettah Days.”

Drop The Gel: Beautiful Photos To Inspire You To Embrace Natural Edges

September 16th, 2016 - By Meg Butler
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natural hair


Ever since the invention of hot combs and baby hair, slicking back or hiding edges has been the beauty standard when dealing with our strands. But it’s not the only way to celebrate the beautiful possibilities of Black hair.

From Gabby Douglas to Janelle Monàe, Black women are letting their natural edges shine, as is. They’re letting their coils stand out. These examples will make you want to give the gel and curl control a break. Plus, embracing this kind of look can help you deal with high humidity and give your edges a much-needed break when they need to be left alone.

Cierra Jackson Was Encouraged Not To Wear Her Natural Hair For Miss America Pageant — She Did It Anyway

September 16th, 2016 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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Cierra Jackson, Miss America


This past weekend, a new Miss America was crowned during the annual pageant. And while Miss Arkansas, Savvy Shields, took home the crown, it was Miss District of Columbia who caught our eye.

While she didn’t take the overall crown, Cierra Jackson, 24, won a scholarship of $1,000 after being crowned the lifestyle and fitness preliminary winner in the swimsuit competition. The Spelman grad and former White House communications intern did this while rocking her natural hair. She styled her own mane for the competition, and it definitely shined on the main stage. However, as she shared with the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer before the competition, there were people who encouraged her not to sport her natural hair on such an important night. Some people felt that her curls could ultimately hold her back in the pageant. However, Jackson said there was a bigger plan behind her choice of hairstyle that those people couldn’t see.

“I’ve had so many people tell me that I shouldn’t wear my hair naturally curly on stage, but there is a purpose behind that vision,” she told the publication. “It’s to show people that you can still be successful, you can still be amazingly talented and still reach all of your goals. I think that’s a universal message that anyone can grab on to and hold on to in their lives.”

Jackson continued: “I’ve been so blessed that the Miss District of Columbia Board has been so open to allowing me to express myself in that way and embraced me choosing to present myself in an authentic way. I know that it happened this way because God destined it to be this way.”

Could she be any cuter? Kudos to Jackson for not being afraid to embrace her curly coif in front of the world, and for not feeling as though she needed to change herself in order to stack up against the other women competing. In a sea of pageant queens who often look like more of the same, this beauty truly stood out.

Jennifer Hudson Pays Homage To Her Late Mother On 35th Birthday

September 14th, 2016 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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Image Source:

While Jennifer Hudson spent her birthday celebrating with her loved ones, there was one family member not physically present, but on her mind during her special day: her late mother, Darnell Donerson.

Hudson actually paid homage to her mother yesterday while celebrating her 35th birthday. She fashioned her signature short hair to look like a style her mother wore as a young woman before the singer hit the town with her son, fiancé, David Otunga, and sister, Julia. She shared with fans what her mother would have said to her on her birthday:

The singer looked like the spitting image of her mother in the picture.

It’s been nearly eight years since Jennifer’s mother Darnell, brother Jason and nephew Julian were killed. William Barfour, the estranged husband of Jennifer’s sister, Julia, was convicted of taking their lives and was sentenced to three life sentences. Since the tragedy, Jennifer hasn’t publicly spoken on the loss very often, but she has said that she speaks to her mother and late brother “all the time” in her head. She also celebrates the life of Julian with an event called Hatch Day through the foundation set up in his honor, the Julian D. King Foundation. The event provides students in need with supplies for the school year, and takes place every year on his birthday, August 14.

Hair She Goes: How To Maintain Healthy Hair When You Travel

September 14th, 2016 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
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Image Source: Shutterstock

Image Source: Shutterstock

Traveling can be exciting but a pain because of packing restrictions. But what’s a girl to do when she wants her hair to be on point for the business meetings, festivities or Instagram photos she wants to take while on her trip?

Fear not, here are five tips that will leave your mane and you very happy.
Ditch Your Curling Iron
Instead of using excessive heat during your trip, opt for curlers or flexirods. The two will help you maintain your style without damaging your hair shaft.


Bring Nourishing Oils
Pack oils like jojoba, baobab or monoi in small bottles to prevent breakage if you travel to environments that have extreme weather. Not only do these oil provide a brilliant sheen, they have vitamins that help your hair maintain its health.


Use A Protein Treatment
Before your jet off, use a protein treatment. The treatment will help prepare hair for styles that are known for breakage. (I.e. tight buns, braids, weaves and wigs).

Protective Styles

If you don’t want to constantly comb your hair and make it susceptible to a lot of shedding, it’s best to use a protective style that will maintain the hair’s moisture and protect its ends.


Protect Your Hair At Night (And Even During The Day)

Using a satin pillow or wearing a headscarf is a must if you desire healthy hair. In order to maintain hair moisture and prevent damage from occurring, wrap or section your hair into bantu knots and tie it before you sleep.

Uzo Aduba Ditches Bantu Knots, Twists And Weaves For A Voluminous ‘Fro, Instantly Becomes Our Hair Crush

September 13th, 2016 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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Uzo Aduba hair

Joseph Marzullo/

When she’s not playing Suzanne “Crazy Eyes” Warren on Orange Is the New Black, known for her characters bantu knots and two-strand twists, Uzo Aduba is often spotted on red carpets and at events with straight hairstyles and wigs. But she decided to try something different for the Toronto International Film Festival, stepping out with a voluminous afro and puffs. She spotted three different unique natural styles while promoting her new film, American Pastoral. She looked fabulous each and every time:

Au naturel. #myfirstfestival #tiff

A photo posted by Uzo Aduba (@uzoaduba) on

Aduba’s hair was done by celebrity stylist Lacy Redway, and she definitely helped the actress make quite the beauty statement at her very first film festival. Love it!

Aduba is always turning heads with her hair choices. In fact, the iconic Bantu knots she wears for OITNB came to life because that’s how the actress chose to style her natural hair for the audition.

“I used to wear my hair in the Bantu knots,” Aduba told Refinery29. “I was doing a show right before Orange, and I was wearing my hair like that and then I had the idea to wear it to the audition. I thought that since the show is set in prison anyway, the knots work, and I didn’t think anything of it. I used to wear them [in real life], but I had to stop wearing them because that attention as Suzanne made me want to stop. I take them out when we finish shooting.”

The more you know…

#RelationshipGoals: Steph Curry Declares His Love For Ayesha By Taking Out Her Weave

September 9th, 2016 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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Steph and Ayesha Curry


According to Cosmo, signs that a man really loves you include him bringing you flowers for no reason, trying to hold you when the both of you are sleeping, and complimenting you when you don’t have a lick of makeup on. But the Internet would argue that a real sign is when he helps you take out your weave. That’s been added to the love decree after Ayesha Curry shared video of husband Steph helping her take out her extensions. That man was concentrating while cutting the thread out of her hair as though he were preparing to shoot a crucial free throw during the NBA finals. It was the cutest thing you’ll see all day. Okay, within this hour:

He was so focused he couldn’t even find the time to respond to her question of whether or not he loves her. Now that’s dedication.

Add weave removal to the list of things we love that some men do, which also includes greasing our scalps, giving foot rubs, painting our nails (especially the non-dominant hand) and listening to us rant about our day when we know we’re not really talking about anything. And you can also add this to the list of things Steph Curry makes time for during the off-season. We’re loving the quality time spent with his family, even if it’s spent in her scalp.