All Articles Tagged "salon"

But Why? Young Black Writer Says She’s Uncomfortable Around Black People

August 26th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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uncomfortable around Black people

Source: Twitter

I distinctly remember feeling some apprehension when I learned that the Romneys had adopted a Black child. I expressed that apprehension, suggesting that we pray for baby Kiernan. I received just a tiny bit of flack for that, from White people–or a White person– who didn’t understand why I might have reservations. The adoption didn’t give me pause because I thought the Romneys were racist and wouldn’t love Kiernan, but because I doubted and still doubt that that Romneys have many Black friends. Black children need to spend time around Black people. It’s always been important for people to have a strong sense of themselves. And in today’s cultural climate that has become even more important.

It is vital that Black people be fully aware of the systems that attempt to hold us back. Knowledge and unity with that community is invaluable in fighting those systems.

Sadly, you don’t have to be a Black child adopted by White people to miss these lessons.

Danielle Small, a young Black woman, recently wrote a piece for Salon where she explained the general discomfort she feels being around Black people.

The title of the piece: I’m black, but I’m uncomfortable around black people. 

Initially, I assumed the worst. I thought Small had gulped the Kool-Aid and believed all the negative stereotypes of Black people to be true. And instead of learning from experience, assumed we were inherently “bad” and couldn’t be bothered.

But that wasn’t the case.

Instead, Small simply grew up in small, predominately White towns where she was often the only Black girl around.

She writes:

Every time I walk into the black barbershop where she does hair, I feel like I’m going to be “found out.” In my mind when other black people see me, they’re thinking: “She may look black, but she’s not black black, if you know what I mean.”

Where does this discomfort come from? And why do I think of Blackness as a test I am doomed to fail?

Like most psychological problems, it all began in my childhood, specifically the eight years I spent living in all white towns in rural Wisconsin. If there was one phrase I heard more than “nigger,” it was “You’re not black.” Talk about irony.

Sometimes it was phrased as a “compliment,” meaning you’re one of the good black people. But other times it was meant so white people, whose sole interaction with black culture came through the distorted lens of racist media, could assert their own twisted version of blackness over me.

“I’m blacker than you because I know more Tupac songs than you.”

“You’re not black. Your lips aren’t even that big.”

“You’re not even that black. Look, my ass is fatter than yours.”

“I know so many white girls that can gangsta walk better than you.”

“You’re not black, you can’t even dance!”

It didn’t surprise me that Rachel Dolezal truly thought she was black. I’ve long known that, for many white people, being black is simply checking off a list of well-worn stereotypes.

I always brushed off those comments, because I knew I was black enough to be called “nigger.”  I was black enough that white people stared at me everywhere I went in those lily-white towns. And I was black enough to be accused of stealing during shopping trips.

But if you hear something enough, it can seep into your unconscious and start to guide your decisions. Somewhere along the way I started believing that I wasn’t black enough, whatever that meant. This is the clusterfuck of all realizations: Racism made me uncomfortable around my own people. Ain’t that some shit?

Small, who wears her hair in locks, wrote that she didn’t apply to any HBCUs because she didn’t think that she would be cool enough and the other students would make fun of her.

I was more comfortable with the thought of being around white people, where my blackness was for sure going to be denigrated in one form or another, than I was with the thought of being around my own people.


Thankfully, after speaking with a Black girl who was born and raised in Harlem, whose own Blackness was questioned simply because she listened to heavy metal, Small came to the realization that there was no such thing as a Black test. And she didn’t have to fight for something was inherently hers.

Small eventually laments that fact that she let her fear hold her back for so long.

And who knows what I’ve missed out on? How many friends I could’ve made, how many organizations I didn’t join out of fear. For years I isolated myself from the community that Henry Louis Gates, Jr. talks about, keeping potential sources of emotional support at arm’s length. And with new hashtags popping up every day, strong emotional support systems are needed more than ever.


We do need each other. Always have. While it is an utter shame that Small let White people and her isolation convince her that she wasn’t Black enough, I’m happy to know that she eventually found peace with herself and is opening herself up to the community.

I commend Small for this bit of truth. Looking around my own family, I know she’s not the only young, Black person who has felt this way. And she won’t be the last.

Have any of you ever been made to feel that you weren’t Black enough? When did you realize your Blackness wasn’t something that couldn’t be taken away?

You can read Small’s full essay here.

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

April 15th, 2015 - By jade
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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!


Natural Hair Pioneer Veronica Fletcher Embraces Chemical-Free Beauty

March 14th, 2013 - By C. Cleveland
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Veronica Fletcher, owner and founder of Sirca Designs, Inc

Veronica Fletcher, owner and founder of Sirca Designs, Inc

For Veronica Fletcher, natural hair isn’t a trend. It’s a choice to take ownership of who you are. It’s a mission she’s spent decades blazing a path for. Her fingertips are the ones that cultivated Lauryn Hill’s legendary locs in the early 90s. They went on to style the crowns of the likes of Toni Morrison, Angela Bassett, and DL Hughley, making Veronica a go-to specialist for celebrities embracing their natural beauty.

The Grenada, West Indies native is now the owner and founder of Sirca Designs, located near New York’s fashion district. Under her brand, she promotes positive self-image and a natural approach to hair care. Allergic to the chemicals used in hair school, Veronica decided early on to devote her styling career to taking the emphasis off chemicals and promoting healthy hair.

Veronica is authentic in every since of the word. She loves styles that accentuate natural features and regimens that allow women to accept who they are. “I tell the truth,” she says. “Sometimes I’m too honest. But I’m not going to take your money if it’s not going to work. If you come in and ask me to do something to your hair that is damaging or just doesn’t work with your texture, I’m not going to do it.”

It’s a steadfastness that comes with experience. Veronica denies setting out to make a statement with Lauryn’s signature dreadlocks. It was a personal journey that happened to be documented on magazine covers around the world.

“Going natural or coming back into it has to be an individual decision. It’s a lot of work that goes into being natural,” she says. “You have to be ready for it. You have to be ready to embrace yourself at any length. Because even if someone tells you it looks beautiful, if you don’t believe it, it doesn’t matter.”

Veronica has made it her job to show women how they can make their natural hair work for them. She is currently working on her first book, The Sirca Of Life: Celebrating My Natural Self, chronicling the natural hair revolution from the 90s to now including resistance from corporate America and within black families. She is also working on a natural product line.

Hair follows the same trend cycle as fashion. It always repeats itself. Veronica knows that natural hair is nothing new, but she still believes society has a way to go before natural hair truly becomes mainstream. We won’t see celebrities rocking twists and locs on the red carpet in mass until we demand its representation and celebrities become more accepting of their natural hair.

“It’s not going to happen if a celebrity isn’t in tune with herself. But we have to force it through,” she says. “Natural hair has always been there, but it’s been hidden. It was appreciated but not the way it needed to be appreciated. We hid ourselves with wigs, we hid ourselves with relaxers, and we hid ourselves with Jherri curls because it wasn’t accepted. To this day there are people who still can’t accept it.”

Whether through her salon, books, or product line, Veronica’s message is always the same, embrace who you are. “This is your mother and father, and grandmother,” she says. “You have to own this. This is you.”

C. Cleveland covers professional development topics and entrepreneurial rebels who blaze their own career paths. She explores these stories and more on The Red Read, Twitter (@CleveInTheCity) and Facebook (/MyReadIsRed).

We Get On Their Nerves Too! 10 Things Your Stylist Isn’t Telling You

November 21st, 2012 - By Toya Sharee
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When my hairstylist posted a status the other day that read “I hate Tara hair”, I just knew there had to be a number of other offenses that we clients commit when it comes to getting our hair fried, dyed and laid to the side.  With the help of my stylist, Ramika of Shear Ingenuity Hair Salon in Philadelphia, here are 10 minor annoyances that hair stylists feel makes their job just a tad bit more difficult:

HAIR & NOW: Save Money On Your Mane With “The Fly Cut”

April 21st, 2012 - By Rashana A. Hooks
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Ladies our dreams have finally come true! The first ever daily deal website that sells discounted vouchers to hair salons specializing in African-American and ethnic hair will launch on Tuesday April 24th!

Yes, you’ve heard it right The Fly Cut  the “mane-matchmaker”, will make it possible for you and me to experience 5-star salon services without paying full price. Naturally, The Fly Cut is the brainchild of three Fly sisters – Former beauty editor (Elle, Glamour, Lucky, Teen People, Essence) and best selling author (It Chicks, The Color of Beauty) Tia Williams, a corporate entertainment lawyer, Devon Willams and veteran online editor Lauren Williams.

TFC’s first deal will be from the widly popular Miss Jessie’s Salon in Soho, New York. Members can buy half-off vouchers to the salon’s new CurlBar the first go-to hotspot for fast, affordable curly and straight services.

So if you are looking for a personal guide to finding a salon to fit your specific hair needs sign up to become a member here and receive inside information about each salon, including its specialty (natural/curly, weaves, braids, blow-outs, etc..) along with available services, star stylists and top treatments. Plus you’ll get tips from acclaimed beauty experts, information on current hair trends and product reviews. Treat your tresses now!



Let Nature Take Its Course: The Hidden Hustle Of Maintaining Natural Hair

April 8th, 2012 - By Alissa Henry
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"Black hair salon"

I’m beginning to think the whole “natural hair” movement is a well-disguised ploy to separate a black woman from her money.

It started with my hairstylist.

She’d been doing my hair for years and I even followed her to three salons. She would relax my hair, color it, trim it, and generally help me maintain the bone-straight look I enjoyed.

Almost two years ago, she moved to a new salon where the stylists did not put relaxers in clients’ hair and they were trained to discourage you from getting relaxers elsewhere. Predictably, she started talking to me about quitting my relaxers. I’d been wearing relaxed hair for 12 years at that point – ever since Aaliyah graced the cover of the “One In A Million” cassette tape – so I didn’t even take her suggestion seriously.

After much discussion, she finally convinced me to quit getting relaxers. She promised my hair would grow; I didn’t need the Big Chop; and I could still wear my hair bone-straight.

Intrigued, I began growing out my natural hair.

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StyleBlazer Beauty: Miss Jessie’s Salon Debuts Curl Bar with Discounted Services and Walk-In Appointments!

April 5th, 2012 - By MN Editor
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If you’re a naturalista, you know the amount of work it takes to achieve flawless curls—let alone breeze through a morning without battling with your tresses. You’ve probably watched a few YouTube tutorials on twist-outs, Bantu knots and curly crèmes, right? Well, whether you’ve gotten into the groove and found a hair rhythm, or you’re in transition, the experts at Miss Jessie’s newCurl Bar will give you a fresh perspective on your hair (and maybe even a new do’)!

For more information on Miss Jessie’s new Curl Bar, visit


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Hair-Raising!: Real Life Hair Horror Stories

March 13th, 2012 - By MN Editor
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As black women, most of us have been through some changes when it comes to our hair. And I don’t mean transitions from relaxed to natural from gheri curl to texturizer, I mean real emotional and even psychological changes because of something that’s gone wrong or right with our hair. Some of these experiences occur in the bathroom mirror, in our kitchen or in the beauty salon.  Whenever and how ever they happened, many of us have a traumatic story or two to share. Check out these stories from our readers and once you’re finished, share your own horror stories in the comment section below.

Tisa: The hater trim! (le sigh) Went in to get my hair trimmed and left with 3 1/2-4 inches chopped off! Smh

Karin: The person used a bad relaxer in my hair. Burned my scalp and nape of neck. Hair appt: $75 Emergency Room visit & prescriptions: $300, Going natural: PRICELESS

Remove Slavery from the History Books? That’s What Tennessee’s Tea Party Is Asking

January 26th, 2012 - By Bianca Clendenin
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The Tennessee tea party wants to move “incidents” like slavery and genocide out of the history textbooks. Why? Because they are afraid that these “incidents” would tarnish the image of the founding fathers of the U.S.

Yes, you are reading this right. They want to erase history and the fact that our country was founded on both slavery and the wipe out of the native’s population.

On January 11, members of the Tennessee tea party presented this idea to their state legislatures, with five priorities of action to change the state’s history curriculum and supposedly to educate students on “the truth” about America.

Some of the changes presented that they’re hoping for include the following: to reference the slave trade as the “Atlantic Triangular Trade,” to have the first black President to be announced as “Barack Hussein Obama,” (how convenient) and to state that the Constitution created a Republic and not a Democracy.

Salon reports that the tea party also doesn’t want their kids to learn that many of the founding fathers owned slaves.

Fayette County attorney Hal Rounds, the group’s lead spokesman during the news conference, said the group wants to address “an awful lot of made-up criticism about, for instance, the founders intruding on the Indians or having slaves or being hypocrites in one way or another.”

Overall it would push for a more biased and skewed version of history, one that is completely false and untrue. It is bad enough that the educational system doesn’t teach our full American history or that of other individuals of color who helped build this country. Unfortunately, American history equals white history and the occasional lessons of slavery, the civil rights movement, and if you’re lucky (as hell) the Harlem Renaissance. But now people are trying to rub out the little acknowledgement of our struggles and history that we get?

This is a complete white wash of history at its finest. Will they actually get to change the curriculum? Most likely not, but it’s scary to think there are people out there are who are trying very hard to paint a false picture of our country’s history and founding fathers as clean as a whistle for the most random and useless of purposes. Go get a hobby.

Bianca Clendenin is college student and blogger. Follow her on twitter at @thefoxypoet.

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Eight Dead in Southern California Salon Shooting

October 13th, 2011 - By Brande Victorian
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8 Killed in Southern California Salon Shooting

A custody battle may be the cause of a bizarre shooting rampage at Salon Meritage in Seal Beach, CA, that left eight dead yesterday.  A gunman unexpectedly burst through the shop’s doors and began shooting, and then stepped outside, shot a man sitting in a truck in the parking lot and sped off.

According to the Associated Press, One man and five women died at the salon, another man and one woman died after being transported to a nearby hospital, and one woman remains in critical condition. The names of the victims have yet to be released.

No official motive has been determined for suspect Scott Dekraai, 42, who was arrested about a half-mile from the crime scene. Friends of the salon owner and other employees said Dekraai was the ex-husband of a stylist who worked there and one of the licensed cosmetologists at the salon was listed as Michelle Dekraai.

Kari Salveson of Los Alamitos, who attended a service for the victims at SeaCoast Grace Church in Seal Beach, said she had known Michelle for more than 10 years and was aware that she and her ex-husband were involved in a bitter custody dispute over their son. Despite knowledge of the custody case, people in Huntington Beach where Scott lived were surprised to find out that their friendly neighbor who had since remarried had been arrested for the shootings.

Shortly after Dekraai’s arrest, officers escorted two women from a house registered in his name to a white car and then roped off the house with crime scene tape. Police are still trying to determine the sequence of events inside the shop and wouldn’t say what type of weapon was used or if the gunman used more than one.

For a town that has only seen one other homicide in the past four years, it will take time for residents to get over this tragedy. “We usually say the worst thing that happens here is that bikes get stolen,” Robin Collier, who lives near the scene of the shooting, told the LA Times. “They call this ‘Mayberry by the sea’ because it’s just like that — everybody knows everybody.”