All Articles Tagged "natural hair"

Trichologist Dr. Kari Williams Speaks On Preserving Your New Color And Restoring Damaged Hair For Spring

April 15th, 2015 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
Share to Twitter Email This


Last week we introduced you to Dr. Kari Williams, a very talented and intelligent board certified trichologist and stylist to the stars. As she prepares to share her knowledge with hundreds of thousands of women at the Kinky Hair Unlocked hair expo in Atlanta on April 24, Dr. Williams divulged some of the hair dos and don’ts for us that she will share with followers, fans, and naturalistas next week.

She previously shared her advice on the right way to wear braids without losing your edges, and why she doesn’t think women should run for their lives when they find silicones and sulfates in their hair products. This time around, she’s speaking to us about preserving our bright and bold hair colors for spring, and what we should do to strengthen and restore hair damaged during winter. Let’s get to it.

Tips To Maintaining A New Color And The Right Products To Use

When you get a color that’s completely different from your natural color, you want to find products that are formulated for color-treated hair. Color is a chemical. The way that it stains and penetrates the hair shaft, you want to make sure that not only are you keeping the hair well-conditioned, but that you’re keeping the color vibrant. There are certain ingredients in chemicals that help maintain that vibrancy.

Look for products only for color-treated hair. There are serums you can put on the hair that maintain shine for color-treated hair because there are some color products that will cause the hair to become very coarse and dry. That always leads to breakage. So I always tell my clients, when you’re natural, you have to give your hair as much attention, care, and conditioning as if you were to use any other chemical on your hair. At the end of the day, the results won’t be the same if it’s not maintained.

Why Naturalistas Shouldn’t Scoff At Color-Treated Hair Products That Aren’t Specifically Made For Black Hair

People think, “Well, I’m natural, so that’s not going to work for my hair type.” I think that’s another misconception within the natural hair care industry. Because of the popularity of the hair typing system, we don’t have the knowledge of products that are actually going to benefit our hair. And when it comes to color-treated hair, it doesn’t matter if it’s curly or straight–it’s now color treated. Now it’s the color-treated type. You want to invest in shampoos and conditioners that are going to treat your hair now that is colored. It doesn’t mean that you can’t still use your other styling products to help enhance the curl and set your hair, but you want to switch your shampoo and conditioner.

Ultimately, if you’re not retouching the color, the color will naturally fade. The ends of your hair are the oldest and they’ll become more weathered, so the color will fade naturally.

No More Relaxer? How To Do The Big Chop & Apply A Texturizer The Right Way!

April 15th, 2015 - By jade
Share to Twitter Email This

We surprised one lucky MadameNoire reader with a short hair makeover courtesy of Luster’s Pink ShortLooks. Our winner Vonda received the big chop and a texturizer styled by celebrity hairstylist Lavette Slater. Vonda had no idea that she was getting a makeover, but her friend Michael wanted to surprise her before she goes off to law school.

The new and approved Luster’s Pink Shortlooks Texturizer Curl Softener is actually great for the process after the Big Chop making your hair more manageable while it is still short.

Check out the video to see her final look and learn some great tips along the way!


Trichologist Dr. Kari Williams Talks Right And Wrong Way To Rock Braids And Faux Locs For Spring

April 8th, 2015 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
Share to Twitter Email This

I recently had the chance to talk to Dr. Kari Williams about all things hair. And to be clear, Dr. Williams is not just any ol’ random delivering advice on your hair needs. She’s a licensed barber, a natural hair care specialist, a Board Certified Trichologist, the CEO and founder of Mahogany Hair Revolution Salon and Trichology Clinic, and serves as President of the Board for the California State Board of Barbering and Cosmetology. And did I mention that she does the hair of Brandy, Jill Scott and Willow Smith? She’s no joke.

And that’s why she’s giving a major presentation for Kinky Hair Unlocked, a hair care symposium taking place in Atlanta on April 24. The event will educate women on how to tend to their hair needs in order to achieve healthy hair. I talked to Dr. Kari about what folks in Atlanta can expect from her presentation, and obtained some major insight on all the hair issues we’ve all been dealing with.

I’ll be posting more of her advice as the week(s) go on, but for now, here’s what she had to say about why we shouldn’t run from sulfates and silicones, and the right and wrong way to rock braids and faux locs.

What Myths She Hopes To Dispel At Kinky Hair Unlocked

It’s bringing together the top tier experts and influencers in our industry. What makes us different is that we have background knowledge. Anytime I’ve done events in the past with other bloggers, I always tell the attendees, it’s great that a community has been built around haircare, specifically the natural hair care industry where women can tap into one another and get tips, suggestions. But what has happened with the influx of a lot of bloggers and people trying to experiment and do a lot of things is that it’s created a lot of myths and misunderstandings. What’s going to make this event different is that we’re bringing together these experts, myself being one of them, to really give consumers real knowledge. My hope, and my presentation, is to dispel a lot of myths. My presentation is pecifically going to be about the science behind hair care, but most importantly, what’s in your products. And really, we’re going to look at the ingredients in your products and try to understand what those ingredients really mean and how it can benefit you and your hair type to ultimately create a foundation to help your hair grow healthy. I want to generate a conversation, especially when it comes to the topic of silicones and sulfates. I know that when a lot of people begin to pay more attention to the labels and what’s actually in products, suddenly sulfates and silicones became the bad guy for hair. A lot of people were attributing scalp discomfort and hair breakage to these particular ingredients without fully understanding how they’re formulated in their products, and the benefits they can receive when these particular ingredients are used in moderation and formulated correctly.

Why Sulfates And Silicones Really Aren’t So Bad

Sulfates are actually derived from coconuts. It’s this type of information that I want to share with the audience. I also want to challenge the audience. If we’re looking at specific ingredients that we see all the time and we put the product back on the shelf because we’re like, “Uh oh, I see a sulfate,” or “Uh oh, I see something that has a cone in it and I don’t like that,” or “Uh oh, I see the word alcohol and I don’t want that.” A lot of the time, when we see the word alcohol, those are actually emulsifiers. But we don’t understand the chemistry as consumers. So you see alcohol and you think drying. No, that’s simply an emulsifier so that the oils and waters can mix.

On Doing Brandy’s Braids

I’m her regular stylist. I’m so humbled and blessed to be her main braider. I tell her all the time, “Girl, I can’t believe I’m now giving you the braids, because when I was younger I wanted the braids.”

The Right And Wrong Way To Do Protective Braids

You can wear a braid style up to 8-10 weeks. If you’re going to wear them for the max amount of time, I highly recommend that you get a touch-up between four and six weeks. A touch-up means getting your hairline re-braided. The reason why this is important is because that’s the area that’s manipulated the most and that’s the area that suffers the most damage because we’re manipulating it the most, as far as pulling it back into styles.

The hair around the hairline is the most fragile. So when you think about adding an extension, whether it’s a braid or a faux loc, that’s weight on a small section of hair. And the more your hair grows out, the more fragile that hair becomes because instead of it being anchored to your scalp, it’s now hanging on loose hair, which weakens those strands. That’s the common cause of the traction and breakage we see around the hairline. So typically, after four and six weeks — because the hair can grow up to half an inch a month — you’ll have some new growth, and enough new growth where you can go around the hairline, touch it up, and now you can wear the style for another month without compromising the health of your hairline.

Why Faux Locs Need To Be Treated Differently

Faux locs, you can go a bit longer. What people like about faux locs is that the older they get, the more natural they look. Because of the dual layer and process, I tell my clients with faux locs that they can go up to seven weeks before they need to come in for a touch-up. My faux loc clients will wear their faux locs up to three months. I tell them that four months is pushing it. It can cause some matting and some breakage when they’re taking out the locs. But up to three months is fine, but definitely, get a touch-up in between that time to help with the health of your hairline.

If You Can Use Faux Locs To Grow Real Locs

You can. There’s a different technique I encourage you to use–and different hair. With the popularity of faux locs, synthetic hair is used to create the look and it’s more affordable. But if you want to actually start locs from faux locs, I recommend using human, afro, kinky hair. It’s going to blend better into your natural hair, and it’s not going to be as heavy.

Black Women Rejoice! TSA Is In The Process Of Ending Black Hair Searches

March 30th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
Share to Twitter Email This
TSA Is In The Process Of Ending Black Hair Searches

Source: Shutterstock

If you’re a Black woman with naturally textured Black hair whose flown somewhere in the past five years, there’s a good chance that your hair has been patted, squished or searched by the Transportation Safety Administration (TSA).

But after two Black women (with a little power and clout behind their names) complained to TSA, this practice (is informally) on its way out.

According to Business Insider, Malaika Singleton, a neuroscientist based in Sacramento, California, wore her hair in sisterlocks as she was traveling to a conference on dementia in London. And like so many of us, Singleton’s hair was pulled and squeezed.

“I was going through the screening procedures like we all do, and after I stepped out of the full body scanner, the agent said, ‘OK, now I’m going to check your hair.'”

The same thing happened to Singleton in Minneapolis on her way back from the conference.

Unhappy with the treatment she’d received in both airports, Singleton contacted the American Civil Liberties Union. Coincidentally– or perhaps not since it happens so often–one of the lawyers there, a Black woman, who also wears her hair in sisterlocks, Novella Coleman, had experienced the same thing– twice.

She too was traveling for work. Coleman just so happened to be joined by White and Latina colleagues who didn’t endure that type of search.

When Coleman asked the officer, why her hair was being searched, she was told passengers wearing hair extensions were searched. But Coleman’s sisterlocks were her own. Another officer said that people with “abnormalities” with their hair were searched.

Quite ignorant and discriminatory, indeed.

She too had filed a complaint about the practice back in 2012.

But it never went anywhere.

Coleman, the ACLU attorney, filed another complaint based on Singleton’s experience and on Thursday, the TSA responded, agreeing to conduct anti-discrimination training sessions with its officers when it comes to screening African American, female hair.

In an e-mail from the office of Civil Rights and Liberties, Ombudsman and Traveler Engagement, Bryan W. Hudson, wrote:

The Federal Security Director for MSP (Minneapolis St. Paul International Airport) and the Federal Security Director for LAX (Los Angeles International Airport), through his Field Counsel, also agreed to participate in the informal resolution process. MSP and LAX will both provide retraining to their respective TSA workforce to stress TSA’s commitment to race neutrality in its security screening activities with special emphasis on hair patdowns of African-American female travelers. MB (The Multicultural Branch of TSA) will also commit to conducting an onsite training at LAX, subject to coordination with TSA LAX leadership, during the 2015 calendar year. In addition, even though TSA does incorporate nondiscrimination principles into its regular training, MB will work with the TSA’s Office of Training and Workforce Engagement to make certain that current training related to nondiscrimination is clear and consistent for TSA’s workforce. Furthermore, in light of recent concerns, MB will diligently work with TSA secured airports and monitor them for consistent implementation of DHS and TSA policies. MB will specifically track hair pat-down complaints filed with MB from African-American females throughout the country to assess whether a discriminatory impact may be occurring at a specific TSA secured location. 

You’ll notice the resolution is informal and no formal decision has been made. But still, it’s a step in the right direction. And since this story is being reported across several media platforms through the country, I’d hope, internally, TSA is sending additional communication and hosting more training sessions to make sure this stops happening in L.A., Minneapolis as well as all the airports throughout the country.

When was the last time your hair was searched at the airport? Are you optimistic about this reform or does it feel like hot air to you?

“This is A Disaster” The Time President Obama Did Malia’s Hair

March 20th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
Share to Twitter Email This

Fab four. #ThrowbackThursday #TBT

A photo posted by First Lady Michelle Obama (@michelleobama) on

This story is ancient in pop culture news terms. But it’s new to me and just too adorable not to share. So here I am bringing it to you, on the off chance that it might have slipped under the radar for you too.

Remember back in 2012, when President Obama was running for re-election he and First Lady Michelle Obama were having dinner with voters? Well, President Obama being the charismatic dude that he is, he shared a very charming story about the time he had to style his eldest daughter’s hair.

My favorite story out of this is Malia, when she was 4, she had a little dance thing. Well, Michelle was gone that weekend so I’m taking her to ballet. And I get her in her little leotard and her little stuff. I did her hair, put it in a little bun.

We get to the dance studio and one of the mothers there right away comes up to Malia – she thinks she’s out of earshot of me and she says, ‘Sweetie, do you want me to redo your hair?’ And Malia who she’s 4 says, ‘Yes please, this is a disaster’ you know, she didn’t want to hurt daddy’s feelings.

I love this story because I’ll forget the week my mother was out of town visiting her brother, my uncle, in California. I remember it for basically one reason and one reason only. It was the first and last time my dad was left to style me and my sister’s hair for school that week.

The first day I naively thought that since my dad was go great at everything else he did with us, doing our hair would be the same. I was sadly mistaken. Not only does my father have large and heavy hands, he had absolutely no idea how to style our hair like our mother did.

But that didn’t stop him from putting up a good front. That morning before school he asked us what we wanted. I was about 8 and by this time I’d had a relaxer for a few years. And since it had been a while since I’d been to the shop, my hair was too old to be worn down. So I told him I wanted a ponytail.

My father’s hands trying to scoop up the strands of my hair felt like mallets clunking against my scalp. It was anything but pleasant. And on Tuesday, I told him I’d do my own hair. My sister, who is just under two years younger than me, whose hair wasn’t relaxed, just had to suffer until my mom came back home.

Needless to say, after a week of me attempting to protect my scalp and my father struggling with my sister’s three staple braids, we were looking rough…real rough when we picked my mom up from the airport.

We all look back on that week and laugh. Those are some pretty fond memories, even if it was less than amusing when I was going to school looking crazy.

Did your father ever have to do your hair for some reason? How did he do?

Spring Forward With These Natural Hairstyles For The Workplace

March 17th, 2015 - By Tanvier Peart
Share to Twitter Email This
Black woman with natural hair in workplace/business office


With the weather starting to get a little warmer, ladies who are “team natural” can show off their mane outside of those winter protective styles. Take a look at these natural springtime hairstyle ideas you can rock around the workplace.

Related read Natural Hair Companies That Would Love Your Support

Rejoice! Soft & Beautiful Botanicals Is Back

March 10th, 2015 - By Brande Victorian
Share to Twitter Email This

Soft & Beautiful BotanicalsWe know you know you the name, but you might not immediately recognize the revamped look of one of our favorite tried and true hair product lines, Soft & Beautiful Botanicals. The premium — yet affordable — hair care brand has recently been brought back to life by Strength of Nature, the same manufacturer responsible for Beautiful Textures, African Pride, and our beloved Esasta QP, and they’ve added some amazing new products to the Soft & Beautiful line to keep your hair just that, with natural ingredients.

SNBB Coconut OilFans of the line now have a full line of products to choose from, all with renewed formulas. This includes Soft & Beautiful Botanicals Moisturizing Shampoo, Moisturizing Lotion, Leave-in Conditioner, Deep Conditioning Repair Masque, Crème Moisturizer and Shea Butter Edges for moisturizing edge control. There’s also a Sensitive Scalp Relaxer System and Texturizer Relaxer System for both regular and coarse hair and the Reversible Straightening Texture Manageability System™ that allows women to go from curly to straight and back again without chemicals in four simple steps.

Additionally, Soft & Beautiful Botanicals is also debuting three Ultra Nourishing® Oils which moisturize, detangle and provide shine, while also serving as effective heat protectants and providing frizz control. The three varieties – Tea Tree, Coconut, and Olive Oil – are all available for approximately $5.00 per bottle, and as a consumer who tried the Tea Tree and Coconut options this past weekend (more details on that to come) I can assure you they are worth every penny. And, as an added bonus, the oils can also be used to moisturize dry skin and nourish your nails, which is exactly what we all need with Spring and Summer rapidly approaching.SNBB Tea Tree Oil

“We are so excited to introduce Soft & Beautiful Botanicals to a new generation of beautiful, health-minded women,” said Charlene Dance, global marketing director for Strength of Nature Global, LLC in a news release. “We have breathed new life into a collection that not only offers stunning results for women of any texture, but enables them to develop healthier and stronger hair via the application of all natural, ultra-nourishing and premium ingredients – not harsh chemicals.”

The new and improved Soft & Beautiful Botanicals line will be available beginning this month at neighborhood beauty stores nationwide, including Sally Beauty Supply, for less than $10 per item.  For further information, visit and of course follow Soft & Beautiful Botanicals on Twitter at @SONSoftBeauty and on Instagram at @SoSoftBeautiful.



“I Want To Embrace My Full Self” Willow Smith Says She Wants Locs In New CR Fashion Book Spread

March 4th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
Share to Twitter Email This
Willow Smith Says She Wants Locs In New CR Fashion Book Spread

Source: CR Fashion Book

By now, surely you’ve noticed that Willow is not your average 14-year-old. And while most were walking around with words plastered across our booty at that age, Willow Smith is slaying a full fashion spread in CR Fashion Book. 

And while Willow gets to wear designer duds by Emilio Pucci, like us, she still has yet to determine a signature style…if she will ever settle on just one.

For now: “I think my look changes all of the time. And right now, it’s a bit more messy, kind of grungy.” 

More than style though, Willow is working on herself. She told the publication: “I just want to have dreads. I want to embrace my full self, as natural as I can be.” 

The issue featuring the youngest Smith child will hit newsstands tomorrow. But in the meantime, check out the stunning images from the shoot.

Willow Smith Says She Wants Locs In New CR Fashion Book Spread

Source: CR Fashion Book

Willow Smith Says She Wants Locs In New CR Fashion Book Spread

Source: CR Fashion Book

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

February 25th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
Share to Twitter Email This

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
Share to Twitter Email This
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.