All Articles Tagged "natural hair"

Support Your Sister: Black Women Come To Zendaya’s Defense

February 25th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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black women come to zendaya's defense feat

Though Giuliana Rancic’s apology last night seemed sincere and heartfelt to me, there are still some who are refusing to accept it. But more importantly, other Black women in the limelight who stepping forward to show their support and solidarity.

First, there was fellow loced sister Selma director Ava DuVernay, who wrote this under Zendaya’s initial open letter.

Then “Scandal” actress Kerry Washington commended Zendaya on her open letter to Giuliana.

And finally, Solange spoke about the ways in which the show had been speaking about the fro on the red carpets for years. And she even referenced the time In Touch Weekly compared her hair to a dog. That didn’t go unnoticed. In true Solange fashion, she provided the perfect response for it.

India Arie even released a “Songversation” about this whole thing. See what she said. 

I wanted to jump in and defend Zendaya – but she’s doing that BEAUTIFULLY  herself.

VERY. WELL.  DONE.  It’s a powerful thing to be a TEENAGER in the public eye, and feel empowered to speak up in your own defense. STUNNING!

In my opinion, Entitlement in and of itself, BLINDS people to that very entitlement …  THUS allowing the behavior exhibited.

I’m not calling Giuliana Rancic a RACIST, .. but OF COURSE  it has to do with RACE.   To say it has “Nothing to do with race” .. THAT’S why people get mad.

But lets remember HOW difficult it is for a person of Gullianna Ranci’s social context to really UNDERSTAND how we see race in this issue. How race is a pervasive ISSUE in the entertainment industries as a whole.

We  need more more compassion in this world. Period

So I’m not MAD at Giuliana Rancic I’m SAD at her.  I’m Sad that things LIKE THIS keep happening.

Make It Right: Giuliana Rancic Issues On Air Apology To Zendaya Coleman

February 24th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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Source: E!

Source: E!

Giuliana Rancic was catching all kind of hell today once people learned about the remarks she made about the faux locs Zendaya Coleman wore to the Oscars. It’s been one of the top stories of the day; but in case you missed it, during “Fashion Police” Rancic said that Zendaya looked like she smelled of patchouli and weed. And obviously, with all the stereotypes, misconception and general ignorance surrounding Black hair and natural hair specifically, that wasn’t the right thing to say.

And though Rancic apologized earlier today, on Twitter, stating that her remark was more about a Bohemian lifestyle than it was about race, apparently she, the network and even Kelly Osbourne felt she needed to clarify and expound on that apology live, on air.

Here’s what she had to say:

“I’d really like to address something that’s weighing really heavy on my heart. I want to apologize for a comment that I made on last night’s Fashion Police about Zendaya‘s hair. 

As you know, Fashion Police is a show that pokes fun at celebrities in good spirit, but I do realize that something I said last night did cross the line.

I just want everyone to know that I didn’t intend to hurt anybody, but I learned it’s not my intent that matters. It’s the result. And the result is people are offended, including Zendaya. And that is not OK. 

Therefore, I want to say to Zendaya, and anyone else out there that I hurt, that I’m so sincerely sorry. This really has been a learning experience for me. I learned a lot today and this incident has taught me to be a lot more aware of cliches and stereotypes, how much damage they can do. And that I am responsible, as we all are, to not perpetuate them further. Thank you for listening.”

You can watch Rancic’s remarks in their entirety in the video below.

Celeb Hairstylist Felicia Leatherwood On Working With Ava DuVernay, Natural Hair On The Red Carpet And Naturalistas Abroad

February 22nd, 2015 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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Felicia Leatherwood is one busy woman. The celebrity hairstylist, who is based out of LA, stays with heads in her chair. “It gets so crazy!” she tells me, and she’s not kidding. Leatherwood is often so busy perfecting coifs for her clientele that she was actually doing hair while we were having our interview. But that’s what happens when your work goes viral and you’re the go-to hair guru for the likes of naturalistas like Ava DuVernay, Teyonah Parris and Jill Scott. We chatted about how she linked up with DuVernay, what magic she’ll work on the director’s hair for today’s Oscars, and how having locs and natural hair in general on the red carpet impacts women trying to embrace their hair abroad. Leatherwood is taking part in the fourth annual Natural Hair Academy expo in Paris, which takes places on March 21. She’s looking to teach everyone, from celebrities to everyday women with limited access to products and natural hair knowledge, how to love and manage their hair.

How She Connected With Ava DuVernay

There’s a young lady named Teyonah Parris. I did her hair a couple years ago when she was on the SAG Awards red carpet. It was a natural hairstyle. It went viral and people knew me from doing Jill Scott, but they really started seeing what else I could do with that hairstyle. It was a sculpted updo. Ava admired that and we met at a dinner, and she was like, “Oh my God, you’re Felicia! I want you to do my hair.” I said “sure.” We were introduced by Afrobella. That’s how it came about. But she knew me from my work with Teyonnah, basically.

What She Has Planned For Ava On Oscar Sunday

That’s a good question. I make this stuff up as I go. I don’t always have a plan for the hair. I kind of just let my ancestors guide my fingers and my creativity and just come up with stuff. I love doing natural hair, so for me, it’s just about being creative and letting that part of me come out when I’m working the hair. It’s something that just kind of happens.

What Seeing Natural Hair On The Red Carpet Means To Her

At the end of the day, I want people to be comfortable with whatever they’re wearing. If it’s natural, I want them to love it. If it’s straight, love it. You gotta just own your hair. But the opportunity I get as a hairstylist is to create something based on what’s already beautiful about you, but just put more of that out there. I’m proud to be a part of that process. I love working with Ava. I have a lot of fun because she’s not just natural, she has locs. You don’t often get a chance to see locs showcased in a way where people start taking notice and saying, “Wow, I might want my hair locked as well!” Locs are becoming a big thing right now, which is really interesting. But people like Ava, in being able to do her hair and show how beautiful locs can be, and look, and how professional and glamorous they are–it’s making people rethink what locs originally were.

The Number One Hair Question She Always Gets

It’s all about moisture. That’s the biggest thing. A lot of people don’t know what their hair is supposed to feel like. Some people’s hair is supposed to feel dry. That’s what it is. You can soften it when it’s wet, but once it’s dry…you have to understand our lineage: Who we are as a people, African people, the region in which we originated is hot. If you have straight hair in heat that’s like 105, 108, 109 degree weather, your hair would burn off. They had to have this hair in order to protect themselves. We’re not used to that because things have changed a lot for us. We think we need to have everybody else’s hair. You need to have your own hair and make sure you’re treating that the best possible way. The best way to treat your hair is to put things in your body that help the hair survive and grow and be strong. The best way you can treat your hair is to not be stressed out. Yoga helps the hair to grow! All the oxygen that gets to flow in the body is what gets the blood to flow to stimulate more hair growth. Drinking water is important. And I think a lot of times, people talk about their hair being dry, and I think it’s because they don’t have all those elements together. Some people are supposed to naturally have dry hair depending on their texture or curl. Other people? You can always put something on it. But a lot of times, I have women who have tried every product under the sun and still have dry hair. And when I feel their hair, it’s the kind of dry that’s supposed to be natural. It’s not the kind of dry that I feel like, “Okay, something is wrong here.” I know what that feels like. There’s a way that your hair should feel naturally that I think women need to be introduced to.

On Traveling Around The World Teaching About Natural Hair

What I do is I travel around and do events like the Natural Hair Academy, and I show women what their hair is supposed to feel like. I let them know that it’s okay where it’s at right now. There’s nothing wrong with your hair.

How She Got Involved With The Natural Hair Academy

About four years ago, women in Europe started asking me to conduct workshops. So I decided to go overseas and bring the knowledge we have here, there in person. I started in London, and then Chimole [Williams], who I’ve been working with for a while, and I like her a lot, she introduced me to the Paris group and said “Hey, they need your help over here. Women are asking about you over in Paris. Would you be interested?” And I said “sure.”

We have access to a lot here in the States. So when you start traveling outside of the States, it’s not the same thing. I try to take my knowledge to other places, and be there firsthand so people can come and consult with me and find out about their hair. I teach them product knowledge. I teach them which products are the best for their texture of curl. And I love going over to Europe and feeding that market. The women there, they’re more engaged and more appreciative of the fact that I traveled. They show up in droves. The Natural Hair Academy is very successful, and every year it has been successful. It’s grown leaps and bounds from the first time I ever worked with them.

The Lack Of Access To Products For Black Naturalistas Abroad

That’s the problem. Getting these products out to these women in other places. I go to Africa, I go to Europe, and they just don’t have access. Brazil does not allow our products to come over into their country. There are a few brands that have gotten there, but it’s not easy. You might have women in Brazil asking me how they get the products that I mention. There are people in the Caribbean trying to get a hold of products. So the natural movement is slowly growing, but it’s not as dominant as it is here for us. You can walk up the street and get what you need here, but they go through a lot. Especially when you even talk about Africa. Ordering? By the time it goes through customs and everything gets filled out, it’s like, “Wow.” Their money is spent and they don’t always get what they ask for. I’ve been going back and forth there as well. It’s a whole different thing, including in Nigeria. I’ll be there in May to train some of the stylists there about natural hair.

What She Wants Frustrated New Naturalistas To Know

Women who are struggling and having a hard time, there are three things they need to do: If they’re going to follow someone on YouTube, they should follow someone who has a texture like theirs! You have to. If you’re looking at a woman like Tracee Ellis Ross’s hair and wanting that, but your texture is more like Lupita’s hair, that’s not reasonable. You’re defeating your purpose. Both those women have gorgeous hair, but you need to follow someone whose hair is more on the level of what you have.

The other thing that they need to do is find out where the next natural hair show or meetup is in their town and go to those meetups. You can connect with women who definitely have hair that’s similar. Find out where they go and who does their hair and see if there’s a natural hairstylist in the area that can help assist someone who’s transitioning.

And they need to have a friend who is natural. And to tell them that you need support because you’re trying to do this thing but you just don’t know what to do and you’re having a hard time and you’re ready to give up. If you let somebody know that before doing it, they will help you, because they want you to hang in there. Being natural for a lot of women is not only about, “Oh I’m wearing my hair natural.” It’s also representing that I’m accepting who I really am and I’m loving it. That’s important for any woman of any shade or color to get–love for self. We grew up with a lot of self-doubt and self-esteem issues from some childhood and teenage years. So to become a woman and finally be in a position to say, “I’m feeling beautiful about what I have” is a big, big deal. So I encourage them to talk to someone who has done the journey and has been successful with it.

#StruggleDiaries: Hair Woes All Black Girls Understand

February 13th, 2015 - By Meg Butler
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Whether it’s fried, dyed or laid to the side, there are just some hair struggles every Black girl under the sun can understand — Like these.

Image Source: Tumblr

Image Source: Tumblr

When The Relaxer Is In Too Long

And you have to decide between passing out and being silky smooth.

“I Don’t Really Consider My Hair To Be Controversial” Meteorologist Fired Because Of Her Natural Hair

January 23rd, 2015 - By Madame Noire
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Meteorologist Fired



From BlackVoices

Rhonda Lee had long been told that she needed to make her natural hair “more pleasing to a wider audience,” she told HuffPost Live on Thursday, but she never expected her hair style to actually compromise her job.

Lee, an African American woman who currently works as a meteorologist for WeatherNation TV, recalled how comments she made in response to Internet vitriol targeting her hair ultimately led to her being fired by her former network.

“There really does come a breaking point when either you’re going to accept me as I am and how I do my job, or you’re not,” she explained. “Apparently my station of KTBS chose not, and I was quickly fired for… two different comments that got me in trouble, both times defending being black in general.”

Read more Rhonda Lee’s termination at

Stop Hating Your Hair: Dove Wants You To #LoveYourCurls

January 21st, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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Source: YouTube

Source: YouTube

It seems that no one taught us to dislike or even despise our curly or kinky hair. It seems that from the moment we become aware of our hair, we’re trying to correct it. In all actuality, someone did teach us to dislike it. From the women who are lauded as beautiful in magazines, on television screens, watching our mothers sit for hours getting relaxers applied. Having relaxers applied to our own heads before we even fully understood what was going on–the message that straight hair is better has been and continues to be all around us.

And while we can certainly relate as Black women, this issue is not unique to us. Girls and women, of all races and ethnicities, who don’t have naturally straight hair are dealing with these feelings.

So it should really come as no surprise that our daughters, nieces, little cousins and other young girls in our lives don’t hold their hair in high regard. According to a recent commercial, created by Dove only 4 out of 10 young girls think their curly hair is beautiful.

What can help increase that number? Surrounding the curly/kinky-haired little girls in our lives with people who celebrate the texture of their hair. And while you’re at it, it wouldn’t hurt to start examining how you feel about your own tresses.

This is not news to us. The “natural hair movement” has been attempting to do just that for some time now.

And Dove is making the same statement–with a more multicultural approach. We’ll certainly let them be inspired by our brilliance if it means curly haired little ones–and some older ones–can feel better about the hair on their heads.

Take a look at Dove’s #LoveYourCurls commercial in the video below.

Natural For 2.5 Seconds: Porsha Williams Shows Off Her Real Hair

January 21st, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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Porsha Williams Shows Off Her Real Hair

Splash News

If you’ve seen Porsha Williams for any length of time, you know that the girl stays with a weave. Long ones. Whether she’s doing Farrah Fawcett curls, big, loose curls or rocking it bone straight, we’ve yet to see her without her signature strands.

That was true until last week when Porsha gave us a very short glimpse into what her real hair looks like.

Take a look at the picture below.

#AllNatural for 2.5 seconds😛 @gonakedhair installed in 3…2..1 #Standby Stylist: @kellonderyck

A photo posted by Porsha Williams (@porsha4real) on

And hours later she was back to this.

And the finished product looked like this.

🔥Gotta Thank you @just_enaj I love my dress! Bracelet: @deepagurnani Hair: @gonakedhair @hairstylinswagg Mua: Me

A photo posted by Porsha Williams (@porsha4real) on


Porsha looks good either way and in the industry she’s in, she certainly needs to protect her real strands. But her natural hair is pretty impressive too. It would be nice to see that every once in a while. What do you think?

100 Years Of Black Hair In 1 Minute

January 16th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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100 Years Of Black Hair In 1 Minute

Source; Cut Video

Last month, Cut Video, the people behind those Birds and the Bees talks with kids and the grandmas smoking weed for the first time, released a video of beauty and makeup trends from the past 100 years. It featured a White woman with mostly White hair styles from 1910 to present day. It was pretty cool to see how our beauty aesthetic has changed over the decades.

But they didn’t stop there. Yesterday, the company released a similar video featuring a Black model, with naturally textured Black hair, rocking undeniably Black style trends. And it too is pretty impressive; and of course, of particular interest to us.

The video features 100 years in 1 minute but life was given to me in that short time span. I must have screamed “yassss” at least five times watching the different transformations.

Check out the video below.

Don’t you love it!

And then there’s also a comparison video featuring both the Black and White model. Pretty cool. I know I’m probably not the only one who noticed how some styles and looks have made comeback.

So You’ve Achieved Your Transitioning Hair Goal–What’s Next?

December 31st, 2014 - By LaKrishia Armour
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Achieving a long-term goal can leave you thinking, “What next?” But you should take the time to enjoy your accomplishments, and that includes the hair goals you’ve reached.

Once you’ve reached your hair goal, it’s tempting to jump right into the next achievement without celebrating the first. Let’s say that obtaining shoulder-length locs was a goal that was met. There’s no need to instantly start collecting images of waist-length hair for your digital vision board on Pinterest. Allow yourself time to enjoy the fact that you’ve met that goal and that your hair is healthy. There’s no rush to the next finish line.

Instead, try spending time assessing the positive aspects of the journey you were on to reach the goal, and review the areas of improvement. If the goal was a 90-day protective style, and 80 of the days your hair was left unattended to underneath that style due to laziness, there’s an identified area of improvement. You’ll find out what parts of your hair challenge actually worked for you and ones that didn’t when you reflect for a time.

Focus on maintaining the results you achieved during your hair challenge. If you’re now an expert at sleeping through the noise of the plastic baggy method, keep it up. Your mornings will thank you. Or, if you’ve mastered the art of the roller set, continue wrapping those magnetic rollers tight. The hard work is in creating permanent habits that affect your daily or weekly hair routine in a positive way. Try coming up with efficient ways to continue with the new changes you’ve created. It could be as simple as changing your blow dryer attachment to speed up the drying process, or using a scarf at night instead of a bonnet when sleeping on your Bantu knots. Finding more productive ways to do things will help you maintain your results and you will be able to integrate those changes into your way of doing things.

While you take the time to pat yourself on the back for attaining your hair goals, remember to pay it forward. Share what you know with others. That conditioner and wrap lotion combo just might be the miracle mixture that helps your sister-in-law coax her edges down. Your quick one-two punch of advice to your coworker struggling with growth might help her stay motivated toward her hair goals. Using what you know to benefit others is the next best step after achieving your own goals.

Celebrating your achievements, maintaining results while creating new habits and giving helpful advice and encouragement to others are ways to allow yourself to reflect on what you’ve accomplished. Then, when it’s time, you’ll be rested and ready to move forward with the next hair goal challenge.


New ‘Do, New You: The New Naturalista’s Road Map To Confidence

December 30th, 2014 - By LaKrishia Armour
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natural hair intimidating


Going natural is a totally new experience that can either boost or deflate your confidence. When natural hair is a new look for you, there can be uncertainty at the beginning because you’re not at ease or as comfortable with it.

To feel excited about your new ‘do, you have to let yourself get comfortable. It’s hard to fake being super secure from the start, but you can grow your confidence as your newly natural hair grows.  We all want to be the woman with the wild, lush afro, pounding the pavement like it’s nobody’s business. Well, here are a few ways you can empower yourself and increase your self-confidence in your new hair.

Reclaim Your Sexy

Believe that your newly natural hair is sexy and alluring, because it is! Think of the characteristics you love about your hair. Maybe it’s perpetually frizz-free, super shiny, or perfectly coiled.  Style your hair in ways that play up its greatness.  Use those positive traits to give yourself an air kiss and a pep talk in the mirror each morning.

When you’re doing something new, you’re bound to get tons of compliments. When you do, accept them graciously and avoid the urge to respond with a self-depreciating comment. Allow yourself to enjoy the positive statements and shout-outs because they’re well-deserved.

Increase Your Styling And Hair Care Knowledge

There’s no secret formula to speed up the process of learning to care for your hair. YouTube videos are a great crash course, but you’ll have to learn through trial and many errors. While you’re gaining hair care know-how, practice crafting a signature style. And, be gentle with yourself. Notice your small wins. Every ‘overnight’ success is made of many small wins stacked one on top of the other. Plus, when you do discover a new tip or technique that helps you, it feels great to pass on the tidbit to the next new naturalista.

Do Things To Feel Like Your ‘Regular, Normal Self’

Here’s an activity to try: Take some time out to put on your favorite clothes. Notice how different each outfit looks with your hair. Think of different accessories you can add or fresh ways you can layer your clothing in order to enhance the look. There might be a dress you’ve stored away that all of a sudden takes on an increased level of chic-ness with your new ‘do. Test yourself and your style to see what works and what might need to be improved upon. While part of you will miss the “old you,” remember to embrace the evolution of your appearance. Don’t overthink it, because sooner, rather than later, you’ll end up happier each day with the way you look.

You can definitely boost your confidence in your newly natural look. Give yourself the permission to be sexy. Be kind to yourself while learning a new process, and embrace the change of the updated look. You’ll be a woman of exponentially increased confidence before you know it.