Four Gorgeous Styles for Valentine’s Day

Hey ladies! So Valentine’s Day is coming up and whether you are going out with your boo or your best friends you want to look fly so I am going to show you four styles I have done with my hair that will complement that outfit you have been dying to wear.

Now I have natural hair but these styles can be done on permed, natural, weave, or transitioning hair. Let us know if you tried one of these styles for V-Day!!!

 

  1. Braided Up do

This style for me was fun, although it did have its challenges.  For this style you will need ponytail holders, a hard brush, gel of your choice, bobby pins and two packs of kanekalon hair and some rubber bands. If you have short to medium hair, you may want to blow dry or stretch your hair well so that you can put your hair in two pony tails. First you will part your hair from ear to ear making a front section and a back section. Then you want to put each section in a little pony bun at the top of your head (make sure they still look like two separate buns) making one slightly off centered and gelling the sides and your edges. After making the buns take a pack of kanekalon hair, leave the rubber band on it and braid it. Do the same with the other pack. Take one pack of hair and use the rubber band to attach the hair to the bun in the back and wrap it around to make a bigger bun. Make sure your hair is not showing. Then with the front bun do the same by attaching the rubber band to the front bun and make sort of a bang and pin the braid in place making sure that that bun is covered also. There you go! A sleek up do that will last through a night of twerking.

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  1. Perm Rod Set

This style lasts a long time and will make you feel absolutely flawless. You will need some setting lotion, perm rods (I used the purple ones but I advise smaller ones like gray or white), a comb, and a hood dryer (optional). Just take your time and put on some music as you section, set, roll and possibly sit if you desire. My hair does not always cooperate so when I use no heat the curl is more like a wave.

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  1. Bantu Knot out

For this style I used a Denman brush, Miss Jessie’s Curly Pudding, and you can use rubber bands if you choose too. This style can be done on freshly washed damp hair or dry stretched hair. Section a piece of hair brush it, apply a holding lotion of choice and I prefer to two-strand twist my hair and then bantu knot it so 1. It is easier to bantu and 2. It comes out curlier than if I just wrapped it around itself.

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  1. Wand Curls

I know a lot of naturals are like “no heat” but I am a firm believer in heat every now and then is okay but don’t over-do it. With most of the heat styles I will blow dry it one day and curl it the next and then I don’t put any more heat into until the next occasion I feel like doing a heated style. For this style I washed my hair, did a protein treatment and then put a hydration conditioner in my hair and bunned it up for a week. After a week of bunning and not standing my hair I decided to hot comb it since it had been stretched and to get a polished look. The next day I took my ½ to 1inch curling wand and did small sections of curls all over my head scrunch in some holding mousse. At night time I pineapple my hair into a bonnet and go to sleep.

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The Big Chop Summer: Tips to Handle Your New Natural

Summer is popular for many, many reasons but in the Natural Hair World summer is the time for Big Chops! Who knows why exactly this is the best time to put the scissors to those relaxed ends, but I found it was easiest for me to big chop in the summer because the weather was better and I had more free time to learn just what-the-heck to do with my new natural curls. For whatever reason YOU may big chop in the summer, there will be a lot of surprises in store and new things to embrace about being natural. Here are five easy tips and tricks if you’ve already big chopped and find yourself facing serious #naturalgirlproblems or if you are considering “big chopping” but don’t know what to expect.

  1. Don’t Compare Your Fro

Before I big chopped I was constantly on Youtube and Instagram looking through pictures of other girl’s big chop results or TWA’s (teeny weeny afro). I was so excited, thinking that I would get these cute little ringlets of curls similar to the many pictures I was seeing. After cutting my hair, however, I simply didn’t look like those other girls because…well because obviously I wasn’t them! When you first big chop, don’t compare your hair to someone else’s. Natural hair comes in a million different curl patterns, and colors and grows in different shapes or to different lengths and so on and so forth. Enjoy your own fro, learn how to love it and embrace it for what it is from day one.

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  1. Nourish Your Fro

When you first chop and are left with little to no hair, it is easy to think that you won’t have to do anything to it for days on end. This is not true. Imagine your hair is a flower in need of being watered and nourished daily in order to help it to flourish. By “watering” I don’t mean shampooing daily (see tip 3), just spritzing it with a water and oil or water and conditioner mix in the morning should be enough. Also, remember that beautiful hair comes from the inside out so nourish your body by eating right and drinking PLENTY of water. Your hair will thank you for it.

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  1. Leave Your Fro Alone

A new fro is normally as tempting to play with as a brand new toy but trust me when I say: leave, it, alone! By this I mean that you should try to resist the temptation to shampoo, re-twist, re-bantu knot or re-braid your hair daily. Find a style that will last you at least 3-5 days, which will help you avoid stressing and breaking your new coils. Also, if your goal is to achieve long (or big) natural hair, then avoid drastic experimentations. If you can, try to stay away from dabbling in keratin treatments, hair dye or texturizers. You’ll end up having to big chop again to get rid of damaged hair or you’ll set yourself further back in the journey then where you started. (Disclaimer: of course you can do WHATEVER you want with your hair and hair will always grow back. So if you’re not worried about anything then by all means do what you want.)

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  1. Budget for Your Fro

The natural hair journey is NOT cheap! Ethnic hair care products are crazy expensive and as a new naturalista it’s almost certain that you will be tempted to buy everything on the shelves that the online hair care forums promise will bring you cute curls to your TWA. The trial and error stage with products will go so much more smoothly and you will feel better about going natural if you are realistic with how much money you are going to spend. So set aside a hefty budget (maybe of about $100-$300) as your natural hair fund to spend on products in your first year. This money can cover products such as co-wash, shampoo, conditioner, hair masks and oils (that you will probably end up never using more than once), new brushes, combs, rollers, dryers and diffusers. The budget will also help you fund protective styles (such as weaves, braids or twists) that can be cute, fun and will give your hair a break. Your hair and wallet will definitely thank you.

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  1. Fall in Love with Your Fro

Warning: big chopping your hair is going to change the way you look. You now no longer have hair in your face distracting from your features, and your style may even change now that you can pull off eccentric pieces you never thought you could have before. It may disorient you to see how different you look, but I promise, from the bottom of my heart, that you look beautiful. If you love your fro, I can promise that it will love you back and reward you by flourishing. Tell your fro how pretty it looks today. Take the time to appreciate how unique your hair is and how mature and sexy you look with such a daring haircut. Don’t be discouraged, don’t let comments get to you and don’t stop falling in love with your fro.
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And with that good luck on your natural hair journey! By the way, I would LOVE to see pictures of new TWA’s and if you would like, share your Big Chop story with us.

Love, Aliah W.

7 Ways to Piss off a Natural Girl

  1. Touch My Hair

I appreciate your loving glances and looks of awe at this magical crown of hair on my head. I might smile generously to show my appreciation of your admiration, but I promise this is NOT an invitation for you to reach out and touch my hair. It surprises me how many people (white AND black) will seriously graze their fingers over my natural hair. Also, DON’T assume that I’m going to say yes to touch it. Sometimes people ask just as a formality with their hands already outstretched and that’s irritating. Keep your hands to yourself. One because it’s creepy and uncomfortable and two, because this actually took a lot of time, oil, products, detangling, twisting, and knotting to get it to this level of perfection and you’re ruining it!
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  1. The “Just-Add-Water” Assumption

I don’t know why people assume that natural hair girls simply spray their hair with water, shake like a wet dog and stroll out the door with a cute ‘do. When in reality what actually happens is a long process and you have to style it at least sometimes. Even if I skip the perm-rod set or Bantu-knot twist out, I still have to put in some kind of product or, at the very least, oil. So this whole “you’re natural it must only take you a few seconds to get ready” is some bull. Stop assuming and appreciate the hours of work I put to achieve the perfect coils, kinks, and curls.

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  1. Ask “Is it supposed to look like that?”

The beauty of natural hair is that it kind of does its own thing. This was hard for the control freak in me when I wanted every curl and coil to spiral in the same direction and lay the same way. The reality is, my hair is going to go in every which way it wants so don’t ask me if it’s “supposed to look like that” because odds are, it’s not supposed to, but it does and your question only irritates me further.

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  1. Pressure to straighten

I wear my hair in its natural state for a reason. I can do many things with my hair but for whatever reasons I choose, straightening it is not one I want to do. It’s insulting to insinuate that in order for me to look presentable enough to show up somewhere with you, my hair must be straight. Not to mention the time I stand to lose, and the heat damage I stand to gain from the press of a hot comb. Also, stop suggesting things like “just imagine your hair straight”, or “you should really straighten it sometimes!” or “you need to come over and just let me straighten it.” Friends don’t let friends suffer heat damage!

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  1. Designate them as a Rain-person

Few things are more irritating than when it’s a torrential downpour outside but somehow as the natural hair person I automatically get volunteered to fetch anything that’s out in the rain, or denied the right to huddle under the umbrella. Or if I’m hustling to get out of the rain and someone turns to me and says “Why are you running you don’t have anything to worry about.” My hair is not waterproof. My makeup, clothes, and shoes aren’t either.

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  1. Criticize Weaves and Wigs

I view hair as art and expression. Some express their creativeness with make-up or clothes, but I enjoy changing my hair style once a month on average. Maybe my hair isn’t the color, length or texture to achieve some of the styles that I desire. Or maybe I want to protect my hair from harsh styling and restyling. Either way, wearing weaves and wigs every now and then doesn’t exclude me from being a naturalista. As long as the hair growing from my head is not chemically treated, I can still call myself a natural chick.

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  1. Use the word Nappy

4c hair is not any less natural than 3c. This ridiculous notion that you have to have mixed chicks-esque coils to be “natural” should cease and desist immediately. All textures, colors, and lengths are beautiful. That’s the point of being NATURAL, displaying yourself and your hair in its natural form and stage. So please stop putting those gorgeous sisters down. Natural is a hard thing to embrace at times, and we don’t need YOU curl-shamers to make it any more difficult.

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– Aliah W.

Natural hair is just a trend….

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A few weeks ago I was at a birthday shindig that resulted in me being very awkward because I was surrounded by people from high school that I associated with from a distance. Anyway, while sitting at a hookah bar (which made it awkward x2 because I don’t smoke) one of my friends got into  heated discussion with this girl about weave and natural hair.

My friend who is a male, stated that “Only black girls wear weave and its usually because they have no hair. This natural shit just became a trend and now everyone wants to wear their nappy hair.”

<> on January 13, 2012 in Los Angeles, California.

The girl he was saying this to took offense to this statement, and I have to admit I did too, and retaliated with “Actually white girls wear more weaves than black girls, they started it. And don’t say that black girls don’t have hair because I have been natural my whole life and my hair comes down past my shoulder.”

Needless to say I was a little offended when my male friend stated that natural hair is nappy and that it has just become a trend. I know that is not true. I have been natural going on 6 years and yes my hair has gone through a lot but up until recently you would not have known my hair is natural because I kept it straightened. My dad used to always ask me why I had to keep straightening it, or why can’t you wear your hair in plaits like you did in the 6th grade?

I tried to tell him that it was socially unacceptable, especially in high school, to walk around with braids in my hair. I had a friend who did that and people thought she was weird. I had to stick to the status quo that nobody anywhere near me or in the media was wearing their hair in plaits without some sort of extension. That is until my senior year in high school.

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It was like an unveiling to the world that now twist outs and braid outs are acceptable. That you didn’t have to have that wet and curl hair and when it dries your curls would be flawless. It really all started with Chris Rock’s movie Good Hair.

Natural hair is not a trend, it is now socially acceptable, I mean if it grows out your head its natural anyway. Whether you want to put creamy crack in it, straighten it, or braid it up, its up to you. It is still natural. Not everybody’s hair is nappy, and let me tell you, don’t judge a book by its cover because shrinkage is real. Her hair may look like its 3 inches long but let her straighten it, there’s a possibility that her hair comes a little past her collar bone.

Being natural is a way of life. Trust me I know, finding the right products for your hair is difficult and doing your hair in the right amount of time so it dries is a struggle. However, once you go natural, usually you love it so much anything else really is just for a quick second to wonder what you would look like if….

It doesn’t matter because you love the way you look natural.

-Averi Simone