All Articles Tagged "natural hair products"
Patricia Keller’s Global Couture Line Offers Women Fashion & Accessories To Match Their Natural Style
Mainstream first-world culture is slowly broadening its definition of beauty as the natural hair movement spreads from down-to-earth campus co-eds to sought-after female DJs and fashion mavens. But the market hasn’t quite caught up with this cultural shift.
That’s why Patricia Keller launched Global Couture. The lifestyle brand is a kinky-coily chick’s dream — T-shirts, earrings and phone cases that reflect the natural woman’s thoughts on beauty, culture and self-acceptance without sacrificing style.
Patricia launched GlobalCouture.net in January 2013 while equally immersed in her career as tenured professor and college counselor at Southwestern Illinois College and her work as full-time cultural researcher and doctoral candidate at UMSL. Adding yet another page to her portfolio, she announced the Global Couture Foundation just a year later.
Keller talked with MadameNoire about turning an old idea and a new need into a line of apparel, jewelry and accessories, her philanthropic ambitions and the phantom ideas of weekends and downtime.
MadameNoire: Define the concept of Global Couture for the uninitiated.
Patricia Keller: I came up with the idea of Global Couture while traveling, maybe six or seven years ago and I didn’t know what I was going to do with it. Now this has nothing to do with the business today, but I was talking to my sister and I said, You know I think there should be a brand that somehow embodies this idea of everyone being unique and special and it not being so unreachable. I was just thinking about something more relatable and the idea of beauty accessories. I was thinking handbags. I was thinking of a lifestyle brand. It was this random idea, and I said, “Can you imagine something like that in Target?”
Going natural is a journey of ups and downs as you explore the natural pattern of your curls and figure out which products work best for you. There are a slew of natural hair care products on the market, touting their glory and honor of hair. It’s so easy to succumb to them all and profess that you are a product junkie at your next NHCA (Natural Hair Care Anonymous) meeting, but it can get pretty pricey in your quest. But did you know many of the needed natural hair essentials come from your cupboards? Let’s explore some must haves you need to get your natural hair swag on.
I’m all for women wearing their hair in the way that makes them feel their most beautiful and confident (well, at least in theory, tacky lace fronts and shellacked hair excluded). And as the internecine
battle conversation about natural v. chemically processed hair continues, I think India Arie’s song “I Am Not My Hair,” is more relevant than ever.
However, in my own hair journey, and as I read about other women’s hair stories, I am convinced that every Black woman should go natural at least once in her adult life. Here’s why:
Caring for Natural Hair Makes You Focus on Yourself More.
In our hectic lives, between juggling professional, familial and other obligations, often the first thing that falls off of our to-do list is making time for ourselves. Taking care of natural hair often requires setting aside time to properly maintain our tresses, and an added benefit is that it really is time that we spend looking inward and being nurturing and loving to ourselves.
Learning About Natural Haircare Teaches Us So Much About Other Aspects of Our Health.
I’m sure that many women would agree that in learning about caring for natural hair, they’ve gained knowledge about healthy living – eating clean organic foods, avoiding certain chemical ingredients, getting proper rest and exercise, drinking LOTS more water. I never realized just how important eating sulfur rich foods help, not just my hair, but my overall physical well-being. The same goes for minerals such as silica.
Caring for Natural Hair Expands Our Notions of What is Beautiful.
Whether you spent a year or more transitioning, or did the “big chop,” moving into uncharted waters with your hair can be uncomfortable and even scary. The good news is that growth and evolution occurs outside of our comfort zone. Growing hair out from a “TWA” can present challenges, especially if we tended to “hide” behind our hair in the past, it can feel naked and vulnerable. Coaxing out our true texture, experimenting with different makeup choices and accessorizing with earrings and other embellishments that we normally wouldn’t wear as we embrace our new and changing looks and style possibilities can be life-affirming.
Most Women Need to Learn What Their Natural Hair is Even Capable Of Achieving.
Since we were young girls, too many of us have been indoctrinated to believe that our hair is something to be conquered. Even the slightest little kink of new growth would have many of us running out to slap some relaxer in our hair. Well that mentality had us killing our hair, leaving it ravaged and over-processed. Going natural forces us to confront our own texture, and remarkably, many women find that their hair is not nearly as unmanageable as they believed it was, and the majority find that their hair can grow longer than they even realized it could. The psychic benefits of this is tremendous because it’s almost impossible to grown healthy hair if you have such negative self-talk about your hair in the first place.
As the title says, my name is Victoria, and like many women (though they won’t admit it), I’m a natural hair product junkie. Or better yet, I was.
Just over a month ago, I made the decision to start locking my hair after a year of messing with, picking at, nurturing and loving my afro. With that change, I was instructed by my hairstylist, who is a big fan of all-natural, straightforward and basic products, to get rid of the creams, the greases, the curly puddings and more that were taking up all the space in both my large medicine cabinet, and the cupboard under my sink. When she told me to do that, I wasn’t really sure if I would. “NOT MY HAIR PRODUCTS!!!!!” I thought. They took me through my transition, they’ve kept my hair from looking a hot mess, and they’ve helped it grow. No, not my precious, precious products…
Then I realized how crazy my devotion to some KeraCare, Motions, Miss Jessies, and Kinky-Curl products was, especially since I had almost 20 products collecting dust in my bathroom. After some thought, I decided that yes, she was right. Those expensive products with their ambiguous ingredients had to go.
So last Friday, I walked into work, bag in tow, with hundreds of dollars worth of hair products. Like a black female Santa Claus, I gifted my co-workers an array of products I couldn’t use anymore now that my hair is transitioning into a new journey. As the Miss Jessies Curl de la Creme ($18) was taken, the stretch silkening cream ($22), the KeraCare daily milk ($20) and more were grabbed from my Barney bag (scratch that, it was a fragile Target bag instead), all I could think was the following: “It’s a damn shame that I spent so much money on products in general…”
Oh, the struggles of going natural. Trying to figure out what would work for my natural texture without drying my hair out or breaking it off cost me a pretty penny. And as one of those women who used to make a trip to the beauty supply store as a weekly activity, I was buying new curling creams and moisturizers as if they were perishable foods. Hot mess, right? But I’m not the only one. I know a lot of women with natural hair who can agree that in the beginning, your hair can never be too moisturized, too shiny, too bountiful, or too big, so one or two products is NEVER enough. You go through a wealth of products to see if you can get the results, and in the end, you low-key become a product junkie.
Even a trip to Wal-Mart for feminine products can turn into an opportunity to raid the sparse hair section for oils (OOOOOOOH tea tree oil!). Yes, I found that when you’re natural, buying hair products, taking hair recommendations from any and everybody, and bargaining with yourself about why paying $20 for a shampoo is an investment is all part of the addiction to hair products (and in reality, women of all hair types find themselves spending mad money on a bunch of products). And yes, I was one of those addicts, ready to snap when a friend or family member was trying to use my $18 tub of Carol’s Daughter mimosa hair honey.
But now that I’m on a new natural hair journey, I decided to get over the money I spent on hair products in the past, and get my Goodwill on by giving up the products that were taking up space in my bathroom and in my life (Okay, I’m being MAD dramatic). After having all those products in my bathroom, I’m now done to virgin olive oil, a tea tree oil hair spray, a Jane Carter locking spray, and some Jamaican black castor oil. I think that deserves an applause. Indeed, this product dependency is a struggle many women go through, and it can definitely put a dent in your pocket. But I recommend doing some research before you just walk in the beauty supply and experiment with an aisles-worth of products–that will save you some time, and of course, some money. Budget and be realistic about how many products you really need. Eventually, you’re going to find the few products that your hair can’t do without, and the rest you’ll be more than willing to hand off to another woman getting to know her own strands. Or better yet, won’t end up wasting all those dollars in general. But until then…good luck sistas.
Before you spend an arm and a leg on brand name hair care products in this recession, think again. You’re likely to have some or even all of these hair-friendly food products under your roof. They help with everything from moisturizing, taming frizz and strengthening, to providing shine and eliminating dandruff.
If you want, you can also create your own homemade recipes by mixing some of these ingredients together to suit your hair’s needs.
Let’s get started!