Friday, August 15, 2014

Much HairDo About Nothing Children's Book

NHH: What inspired you to write this book?
MRW: I use to wear a wig when interviewing for jobs. I was fearful that my natural hair would prevent me
from getting hired. I interviewed for a teaching position abroad and got the position. However, I wore
my natural hair on the first day of work.  My boss called me into her office and asked why my hair looked strikingly different. I shyly admitted to interviewing in a wig. She told me that if I wanted to keep my job that I would have to put the wig back on.  I walked back to my apartment holding my head down, hoping no one would notice my tears. I crawled on the floor, still in my clothes and shoes, where I slept for the remainder of the night. My mind was preoccupied with thoughts. Should I sacrifice my job and fly back to America? Do I wear a wig to save my job? By morning, I had reached my decision. On my way to work, I stopped by a dumpster and threw the wig inside. I subconsciously understood that my decision would impact “nappy-headed” women and girls everywhere. That experience motivated me to write this children’s book. As an adult woman, it deeply impacted me. I could not fathom how young girls would handle going through the same thing. I wanted to do something to help them learn to appreciate and value their hair.
Unfortunately, my dilemma was not unique. Many women are aware of how their hairstyles (perm, weave, natural) can both advance and stifle their careers. The good news is I didn’t get fired. Nevertheless, my contract wasn’t renewed for another year.

NHH: How much of the book is realistic?
MRW: I think the entire book is realistic. The main character, Morgan, is like many black girls who worry
about their hair. It is difficult to build the self-esteem and self-image of our young girls when they are being stigmatized for, doing something as simple as, wearing their natural hair.
For instance:
• Tiana Jackson, 7-years old, who was told by her school administration that her natural hair did
not look presentable and to cut it. Watch YouTube Video
• Vanessa VanDyke, 12-years old, who after notifying administrators that she was
being bullied for her hair, was told to either cut and shape it or face expulsion.
• Danielle Cook, 13-years old, who was prevented from attending a college preparatory because
of her dreadlocks.
Much Hairdo About Nothing is a tool that creatively opens the dialogue with “nappy” girls and let’s them
know that they too have “good” hair.

NHH: Why is your children’s book different than other books?
MRW: Much Hairdo About Nothing is both educational and fun. It is 68-pages of a compelling story and
detailed illustrations coupled with a broad range of activities. It has reading, writing, listening, and speaking activities. There are science, matching, history, and dictionary lessons to promote learning across the board.
The book includes a crossword puzzle, word search, and word scramble. It also has drawing and coloring worksheets as well as a set of paper dolls to cut out. The answer keys are in the back of the book to check for understanding. Much Hairdo About Nothing (Father-Daughter Dance) is the ideal book for younger readers, parents, and teachers. Parents can engage in the reading process and assist their child in completing the various activities. Teachers can order book sets and utilize the activities for a student-centered, whole-class lesson. Younger readers will enjoy the experience, at home or school, while being encouraged to take
ownership of their learning.

NHH: How did you come up with the title?
MRW: The title is inspired by the name of Shakespeare’s famous play, Much Ado About Nothing. The title
signifies unnecessary concern over something. I substituted the “Ado” for “Hairdo.” My book essentially explores two very important relationships for a young girl: the relationship she has with her father and her hair. Both can impact her. I chose Much Hairdo About Nothing as the title and Father-Daughter Dance as the subtitle.

NHH: Did you learn anything from writing your book? What was it?
MRW: I learned how the topic of hair also affects other races of women. White or Asian mothers in interracial unions will have to, at some point, confront the issue of their biracial daughter’s hair, especially if their texture is “nappy” or “kinky.” They may not know how to have that discussion. My book can greatly benefit them as well.

Marshalette R. Wise is from Tuskegee, Alabama.She has a B.A. in English Language Arts Education from Tuskegee University, M.Ed. in Educational Leadership and a Minor in African Diaspora Studies from the University of Minnesota, and CELTA from the University of Cambridge – Teaching House NYC. Marshalette is the founder of WISE Scholars Foundation, a nonprofit organization with the mission of assisting socioeconomically disadvantaged and at-risk youth with dropout prevention, school completion, and college attainment. She believes in “Preparing Today for Higher Education Tomorrow.”

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

How has your mental, spiritual, and physical health been lately?

Guest post by Wolfgang Lisborg

These are three important aspects of our daily lives; especially the mental piece.  Being mentally inclined is something that is very important in today's age. With all the misconceptions, misbehavior, and constant decisions being made around us, it is significant that we become mindful of how we partake in toilsome, rigorous, and subtle situations.

Being spiritually inclined is another important asset to our overall being, especially concerning our emotions.  Whether positive or negative, whatever we meditate on will subconsciously be expressed. It's important that we don't become victim to allowing our spirits to be uneasy of indecisive. 

How does the mental and spiritual areas of your life work with your physical body?  To have a healthy body, you must incorporate the other aspects because they all lead to a cycle of growth. Deciding what to eat, how to exercise, how to manage your time to reduce stress and understanding and accepting yourself are all decisions made from your mind and spirit. When things are working in together it ultimately leads to a much healthier physical body. Always remember that external sources (other people's opinions) shouldn't define who you are...that's your responsibility. 

Be mindful and humble and all three aspects shall bring you peace.

Wolfgang Lisborg and I'm from Copenhagen, Denmark residing in Greensboro, North Carolina at the moment. He's a freelance fashion/portrait photographer, a natural hair enthusiast who is trying to become a voice for natural males, and he's a freestyle dancer.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Five Unique Hairstyle Ideas for Summer

Guest post by Rowena

Five Unique Hairstyle Ideas for summer

There is nothing as exciting as summer. The season comes with the sun and the cool air that gets us out of the winter shivers. We all know that summer is about expressing ourselves, so what better way to express yourself than with fun ideas on how to wear your natural hair. Because of the summer heat and its ability to damage hair, I recommend the following protective yet trendy hairstyles.

Box Braids
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Box Braids are by far and will always be one of the most protective and trendy hairstyles ever. There is nothing that screams African roots naturally like this hairstyle.  The trend is to have the braids plaited in the medium size or the jumbo size as opposed to the small size. Box braids can last from 2 to 3 weeks depending on how you care for them and how long you want them to last. There are so many unique ways to style your braids as in the pictures below:

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Marley Twists
After the Box Braids craze, then came the Marley twist band wagon. All I can say for this hairstyle is yes, yes, yes! It is funky and also has amazing protective ability. Marley twists seem to be heavy but the trick to having them light is to hold more of your natural hair per braid or hair extension piece. There are also many ways to style your Marley Twists as shown below.

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Turban inspiration
Having a bad hair day? Run out of style ideas for your hair? Are you too lazy to put any effort into your hair? Then you need to be turban inspired this summer. All you need for this style is material for the wrap; African Material, or even a simple long cloth will get the job done. Get your ethnic groove on with this turban. Here are few inspiration ideas for you to borrow.

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The Natural Afro
Since it is summer, let your hair out and let that big or small afro of yours define your natural hair stance. During the summer you should never be worried about the drizzles that will cause mega shrinkage. Just make sure to add plenty of moisturizer to keep those natural curls or coils fresh.

It is assumed that this hairstyle tends to favor women with a more curly texture. This is true to some extent, but if you embrace your kinky hair, then you can definitely rock your 'fro. For maximum volume, use a light hold gel and curling rods or braid the hair at night depending on the texture of the curls that you desire.  After removing the curling rods or the braids, use a holding spray to keep the curls in place.  Accessorize your afro by adding flowers, ribbons or bows.
                                           Photo Credit:

All these beauty styles are anti-heat and can be done by the average woman with at least an inch of hair and with the little effort. Good luck and enjoy the rest of your summer.

Rowena is one of the beauty and hair care writers at  Aside from that, she’s also one of the hairstyle and makeup gurus at Arreis Cheveux.  Her passion for hairstyles and make-up inspires her to share her knowledge and help women with beauty woes. Follow her tweets at @ ArreisCheveux in Twitter.

Friday, August 8, 2014

How To Prevent Heat Damage While Styling your Natural Hair

Post by Felicia Leatherwood

As a rule of thumb, you should always use a heat protectant before you apply any type of heat to your hair.  A protectant is a product that helps coat, and strengthens the cuticle, to protect it from exposure to the heat source. There are many products on the market (including leave-in conditioners) that can sometimes serve as a protectant.

My personal product recommendations
11) For blow outs, you can use Koils By Nature Shealoe leave-in conditioner.
22) For pressing and blowouts, you can use Lawrence Ray Concepts Bling High Shine Spray to coat the hair before you blow it out and flat iron it.
33) For flat ironing, you can use Nubian Heritage Honey & Black Seed Heat Protect Keratin Wrap Hair Mousse before flat ironing. The shampoo and conditioner for this line is also good to incorporate into your straightening regimen.

Getting started
After you’ve detangled and applied your protectant, it is best to blow dry your hair with a comb attachment; make sure the temperature setting is appropriate for your wet or dry hair. Moisture stays at the base of the scalp after your shampoo, so that area is going to be wetter. You’ll notice your ends tend to dry quicker. You can use a medium to high heat setting at the base (root area), but as you move the blow dryer down toward the end of the hair, you want to use the cool down button so you don’t overheat the hair. Use the cool down button at all times on hair that is already dry. 

Heat & straightening tips
If you wear your natural hair straight, it is safe to have it flat ironed every other week (not to exceed twice in one month). In between, you must shampoo and condition the hair. Use curlformers, flexi rods, rollers, or a wrap for your overnight styling technique.
You don’t need to straighten your hair beyond a blow dry for length check. A blow out with a dryer is sufficient to complete this task. You just want to check where it’s growing the fastest and longest using the least amount of heat.
When a trim is required, it does not have to be completely straight to get a precise cut from a professional. A blow dry without flat ironing the hair would be enough to reveal your true shape.  
When using a hot comb, only hot comb the roots of your hair. Don’t pull the comb through the entire length of your hair strands. Only use a flat iron on the body (or the rest) of the hair for straightening. When going to a professional, feel confident in making this recommendation to your stylist.
If your hair is fine or soft, be very careful not to over flat iron, or apply to much repetitive heat to the hair; it may not revert back to the curly or kinky curly state. 

Flat iron temperatures
Your flat iron temperature is safest on a lower setting (between 375 to 400 degrees, depending on how thick your hair is). Everyone should test the heat of the iron on a napkin first, if the napkin turns brown, then it’s still too hot to apply to your hair. Adjust the settings appropriately. 400 to 450 degrees would be OK on thicker hair; people with medium to fine hair should use 375 to 400 degrees. But don’t forget to test first.

When you smell burned hair
There are only two reasons why you’ll smell something burning while flat ironing your hair: 1.) You could have actually burned you hair. 2.) If the towel or napkin used in checking the temperature of the iron is burned with a black or brown residue, the odor from the towel will get into the iron and transfer onto your hair — which causes the odor.

Recovering from heat damage
The bad news is that heat damage can only be healed by cutting off this now dead hair. Even after a protein treatment, there may not be enough improvement to salvage these strands. Because of the heat, your hair may become thinned out … and there is no recovery from that damage. You can use argon oil on the ends of the hair left after trimming to protect from further damage.  

Felicia Leatherwood is one of Hollywood's most sought after hair-stylist for celebrities Ari Parker, Kimberly Elise, Teyonna Parris. Jill Scott, and Kim Coles to name a few. Look out for her workshop in a city near you. For dates check out

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Heat-Free Summer Styles to "Heat Up" Your Natural Hair Game

By Rochelle Graham

The telltale signs of summer are bonfires, pool parties, barbecues, and soft beach waves. You don’t need to apply heat to your natural hair to “heat things up” after a long, winter regimen that revolves around combating dry and brittle hair. While the change in temperature can offer a breath of fresh air to any beauty routine, hectic summer schedules call for trading in high-maintenance hair for no-fuss ‘dos that won’t cramp your style. Summer’s warm evening breezes and long, humid days also bring new challenges: dryness, frizziness, and unmanageability. 
Curly hair needs all of the moisture it can get, and working a moisturizing or hydrating shampoo into your warm weather hair regime is a must when up against summer’s hot spells. While salty, beach winds can play a role in unruliness and loss of hair elasticity, oxidation from extreme sun and salt exposure will not only cause hair to become more brittle, but it can take on an off-color appearance. Choose a protective style that doesn’t cause damage by pulling or tugging on the cuticle to cause breakage, and permits easy access to the scalp. The surf and sun are a part of the culture, but when not wearing a beach hat to protect natural tresses, you can use the quick styles below.

Goddess Braid Bun
Part your hair on the right, and create a left-side ponytail with all but one section of hair from the right side. Next, secure the ponytail with an elastic band and twist it into a loose bun. Take the loose section of hair, braid it, wrap it around your head, and work it into the bun. Don't try and make it look too neat; it totally works as a messy updo. Keep flyaways at bay with a light mist of hair spray. You can also use Alikay Naturals Lemongrass Leave In Conditioner. A leave-in treatment infused with the right ingredients will impart shine, refine the shape of the curl, and control frizz.

Knotted Low Bun
Knotted buns placed at the nape of the neck are a must for busy, summer schedules. This is an excellent low-maintenance hairstyle that can be done with wet, dry, or slightly dirty hair. Just twist, knot, pin, and go! The Alikay Naturals Knots Be Gone Hair Detangler helps you maintain a tangle-free, sleek look. Get in the habit of using styling aids that contain antioxidants to assist with the prevention of summer damage.

The Braid Loop
Depending on your hair, apply an anti-frizz or smoothing product before drying. Part your hair in the center and make two pigtails at the back of your head. If your hair is shorter, the pigtails can be on each side of your head, and above the ears. Braid both pigtails and secure each with an elastic band. Wrap one braid over your head, setting it about one inch back from your hairline and securing the ends with bobby pins. Wrap and secure the other braid the same way. The braids may overlap or meet, depending on your hair length.

Rochelle Graham is the CEO of Black Onyx World LLC which operates Alikay Naturals. The line expanded to become a formal company with a manufacturing department and a retail storefront. Their line now offers more than 60 products, focusing on Natural Hair Care, Skin Care and Bath and Body.  Visit the website at

Monday, August 4, 2014

pH and Porosity – The Cure For Dry Hair

By Heather Katsonga 

Ask any new Natural what their top problem is and I’ll bet you most will say “dry hair.” Well, your dry hair days are over. I’m going to cure the problem for you with two fancy concepts “pH’ and “porosity.”
The pH scale runs from 0 to 14; 7 is neutral. Unpolluted spring water has a pH of 7. As pH falls below 7, acidity increases; as pH rises above 7, alkalinity increases.
If your hair feels dry and brittle it could be because the products you are using are not pH balanced.
By far the quickest and easiest way to measure pH is with pH paper. That paper is available on Amazon and eBay. Dip a strip into your shampoo and another strip into your conditioner. If your shampoo and conditioner are compatible, the conditioner (or leave-in conditioner) will have a lower pH number than the shampoo. Simple.
The more porous your hair is (the measurement of how big the pores on your hair are), the more you may be prone to breakage, split ends and other kinds of damage. Closing your hair’s pores (“reducing your hair's porosity”) makes your glow, helps you retain moisture and it will help you retain length.
By reducing your hair’s porosity it will stay softer for longer. Here’s how you can do that:
1.) Never shampoo without following up with a conditioner. This is because conditioner is designed to close the pores on hair, while shampoo opens them up. Hair product companies do this by creating a conditioner with a lower pH than the shampoo.
Lower pH reduces porosity so conditioners are typically lower in pH than shampoos. The pH of products in the same line will account for this required fall in pH, however, if you mix shampoo and conditioner brands it’s worth checking they are compatible by ensuring that the pH of your preferred conditioner is lower than that of your shampoo using pH paper.
If your shampoo has a lower pH than your conditioner and you definitely do not want to change products then always finish your wash off with an apple cider vinegar, or lemon, rinse.
2.) Rinse hair after your wash routine using a cold lemon rinse or a cold ACV rinse.
Why would you do that when lemon and ACV are so much more acidic than hair? As mentioned above, acids close the pores of your hair. Although Lemon and ACV are too acidic when they’re neat, diluting them in water reduces their pH to a level that is good for hair.
3.) Rinse hair with cold water after any wash or co-wash. Cold water closes the hair’s pores while warm water opens them up.
4.) Always seal in moisture using a cream and hair oil. Creams and oils seal the hair, so that your leave-in conditioner and moisture don’t escape.
Heather Katsonya-Woodward can be reached via her website at
On Twitter @NenoNatural

On Facebook  Long Healthy Hair

Thursday, July 31, 2014

'Shop and Style' with Cantu Beauty | Houston, TX

TeamNatural and Cantu Beauty partnered up to bring Houston Beauties their 'Shop and Style' event!  On Saturday, July 19th at HEB in Pearland, attendees enjoyed a meet and greet with bloggers Mimi Irvin of Official Corporate Chic and Jasmine Winters, along with product and hairstyling demonstrations, Q&A, giveaways and more!

Constance Cash (Creator of IAmTeamNatural) and Chimere Norris (Editor-in-Chief of Naturally Happy Hair Magazine)

@OfficialCorporateChic pictured with two mini-naturalistas.  It's a family affair!

Live Hairstyling Demonstrations

Jasmine Winters performing hairstyling and product demonstrations.

Product Sampling

Giveaways and More!

Complimentary hair consultations helped attendees choose the best Cantu Beauty product for their hair!

Be sure to visit Cautu Beauty for product information and to find sponsored events happening in your area.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Darrius Peace Answers Natural Hair Problems with New Video Series

Summertime is in full effect and with the heat comes an entire set of problems when trying to manage natural hair. Transitioning and seasoned naturals' frequently asked questions are discussed in a bi-weekly video series starring the comedic, yet knowledgeable advice of stylist and author of the "My Hair Ain't Nappy" series Darrius Peace.
"I want women to showcase their natural hair in the most beautiful way so other women who are considering transitioning could feel comfortable making the decision" says Peace. "I also want to diminish the stereotypes and stigmas associated with natural hair looking unkept, unruly, and unpolished." he continued. In the first episode, Peace tackles the number one question by providing tips on how to avoid hair loss and retain moisture.
Throughout the series, Peace will focus on techniques that will help all naturals feel comfortable with managing and maintaining tresses throughout the season. The videos will focus on day-to-day questions that the natural hair wearer encounters including: How to protect your scalp and avoid hair loss in summer time? How to get lasting curls? What are the top hair product needed without breaking the bank? Is there a way to determine ones own hair texture? How do I make my curls curly and big?
The series launched last Thursday, July 10th on the Love Publicity Youtube channel.  See more tips by Darrius Peace by visiting him on Myhairaintnappy.comFacebookInstagram, and Twitter

Thursday, July 10, 2014

The Shrinkage Games

By Lisa Clay

When you make the decision to go natural, there are a few things you must keep in mind. One of the primary — and constant — battles is the one between curls and length. Although we all love our curls unconditionally, there is nothing wrong with wanting to get the most out of them. While there may be a million products on the market that claim to elongate your curls, the right product can help you retain length when styling. It doesn't matter if you’re a twist-out queen or a wash-n-go kind of girl, here are some great products to try next time you’re looking to show some length.

Jane Carter Solution Curl Defining Cream – 6 oz., $18.00
This great multi-purpose product can be used to give ultimate curl definition for wash-n-go styling or twist/braid outs. When used on wet hair, shingling (raking the product through small sections) can help elongate your curls while imparting shine and softness to the finished dry style.  

Shea Moisture Organic Coconut & Hibiscus Curl Enhancing Smoothie – 12 ounces, $9.99 
This highly regarded styling aid is both affordable and widely available. With the Curl Enhancing Smoothie, a little goes a long way when it comes to preparing your twists or braids. A small amount per section will help with reducing frizz and increase hold to create a more defined style. Available at local retailers.

Qhemet Biologics Aethiopika Hydrate & Twist Butter – 5 oz., $14.00
Qhemet has a cult following and this is one of those products with the most praise. The combination of amazing ingredients includes yummy butters, oils, and a bit of plant wax gives great definition to curls while helping retain their length. This product doesn't contain water, so try it on damp or dry hair for best results. 

Obia Natural Haircare Curl Moisture Cream – 4 oz., $10.00 
One of the best new products on the market, the Curl Moisture Cream is fantastic for setting styles such as twists, braids, and bantu knots. It doesn't matter whether you use it on wet or dry hair, the results will be lush curls with a soft hold.  

b.a.s.k. Palm Tapioca Deluxe Hair Cream – 8 ounces, $16.00 
The Palm Tapioca cream is thick, creamy, and excellent for those looking to stretch their curls. The ingredients are made to envelop and condition the hair during the styling process, and can be easily used on wet or dry hair.

The wonderful thing about natural hair is that it’s versatile. Whether you’re one to embrace your curls or want to stretch them out, there’s a product and styling technique out there for you. If you’re looking for more of a stretched style, try working with drier hair. When your hair is wet, it has the tendency to shrink, so you’ll have a tighter, more defined curl pattern. Working with dry hair will allow you retain more of the length, and usually makes for softer, fluffy styles. 

When you want to rock a more loose or more full twist or braid out, opt for fewer twists or braids. More twists equals more definition which can make your curls appear shorter. And speaking of braid-outs, for some, this style may also help with elongating your curls. The process of the three strands crossing in a downward motion can help to stretch your natural curl pattern.  These are just a few tips and techniques that can help you achieve a more stretched style. Don’t be afraid to experiment to see what works best for your curls! Who’s ready to play the shrinkage game now?

Lisa Michelle Clay is the owner/creator of the natural hair blog, This Hair of Mine. She shares personal information about her natural hair journey and seeking to inspire, encourage and motivate those who are natural or considering going natural.
She can reached via Twitter @bighairbrwn via Facebook This Hair of Mine.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

The Power of Beauty

By Brooke Brunson

                            The Power of Beauty

Nowadays, it seems as if people rather buy looks,
Then educate themselves with books,
Or even acknowledge,
Their own self worth,
Leaving behind a shallow soul,
 Which makes inner beauty seem almost obsolete. 
And in so reinforces the message that,
Looks will take you far,
Questioning if your own beauty,
Looks even good enough to compete.

Girls not even young enough to vote,
Asking their parents for breast implants,
While others slip through the cracks,
And succumb to the deadly desire to be thin,
While withering away,
Like a brittle frame of bones and skin,
But what about those who hate the complexion of their skin,
So much that they rather buy over the counter creams,
Just to bleach their skin.

Hmm…oh what a wonderful world we live in,
That twists the sick standard of perfection,
Into an illusion that looks better face-to-face,
More like a plastic doll,
Than a human face,
So you rather me lay my life on the line
Just to look like the people I see today.
Is the price of beauty that high?
Are you insane?

Throughout time,
I have realized
That the power of beauty,
Can be an ugly thing.
It can either make you happy,
Or make you miserable for the rest of your days.
And even if you try,
To alter your face,
Or make yourself believe that looks will never fade,
Know that, as you get older,
Things will change.
And the looks you once praised,
Will never be the same.

A freelance writer and blogger Brooke Brunson is also a contributing writer for The Black View. She has also contributed some of her work to various magazines and blogs in New York and her hometown Philadelphia. For more info you can check her out on her blog at Also follow her on Twitter @Brookepoets

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Hair on Vacation

By Heather Katsonya-Woodward

Your ticket is booked and your bags are packed, but how will you care for your hair while on vacation? You'll have to do some pre-planning and Heather Katsonya-Woodward of Neno Natural has a few considerations for a pretty girl with coily curls:

      1. Convenience. Do you want to have a break from hair management too?
      2. Weather. What will the weather be like?
      3. Activities. Will you be swimming and therefore immersing your hair in salty or 
                chlorinated water regularly?
      4. Products. How much and what should you take?!

Generally, when I go on vacation, I also want to have a break from managing my hair. I try to arrange a completely protective, low manipulation hairstyle before I go. I prefer braids, but if you like sewn-in weaves, they are great too. 
For my next vacation, I'm considering wearing a wig. I'm about to purchase a very authentic looking natural hair weave. This is a great money saver; I can cornrow my own hair for wearing the wig so I don't need to "waste" cash on a stylist.

It's not just the cold that hair doesn't “like," it's any extreme temperatures. If you're going somewhere very hot and dry, you will find that your hair will dry out before midday — even after a good moisturizing session.
A wash-and-go style can become very hard and crunchy in hot weather. I also find shrinkage to be worse when it’s very hot than when the temperature is mild.
If you're going on a skiing holiday, the extreme cold could lead to brittle dryness. Hats, tucked-in hair styles, updos that hide hair ends, and completely protective dos are ideal here.

Beach and poolside vacations are my favorite! If you're only going to swim a couple of times, it's okay to go into the pool
"as is" without preparing your hair. If you plan to swim regularly in salty seawater or chlorinated pool water, you should make some preparations.

Spritz your hair thoroughly with water, and generously apply a good conditioner. You don't have to use an expensive brand; even a $4 commercial conditioner will do. 
Lock in the conditioner with any good quality vegetable oil such as avocado, grape seed, or even olive oil. I suggest you don't use an expensive oil such as jojoba or argan oil, because you're going to wash your hair after the swim.
You can now go swimming. 
If you want to add an additional layer of protection, twist the hair into sections and tie the twists together loosely if they are big enough — or wear a shower cap.
After every swim, wash the hair through thoroughly, condition using a daily use conditioner, and air dry in plaits or twists.

Products to take
Keep in mind that your products may not be sold where you are going, so if you'll be gone for more than a week you will need to pack your products. But only pack products you have used before and like! Don’t forget restrictions on what quantities of liquid you are allowed in carry-on. You don’t want to throw away perfectly good product if it’s not allowed!
I made the mistake of taking a brand new, never-before-used conditioner on holiday only to find it didn't work with my hair! I was in a country that doesn't have natural hair products at all, so I had to use my oil blend (Neno Natural's Hair Growth Stimulator) to condition my hair. This was OK, but I prefer creamy conditioners because they’re better for detangling.
However, my top recommendation is to have fun and not obsess over your hair. Upon your return, give it a good deep condition to make up for any neglect.

Heather Katsonya-Woodward can be reached via her website at
On Twitter @NenoNatural
On Facebook  Long Healthy Hair

Thursday, July 3, 2014

New Orleans Natural Hair Expo

The 1st Annual New Orleans Natural Hair Expo and Natural Happy Hair Magazine is pleased to be the media sponsor for the event!

So what is the New Orleans Natural Hair Expo? It's two days of fun and sophistication in a social environment that celebrates and promotes the natural hair community and culture. The expo will feature workshops, product demonstrations, a blogger panel, vendor suites, vendor mall, profesional DJ, catered refreshments and a cash bar.

Saturday, July 5, ItsMeItsMo will be hosting the New Orleans Natural Hair Event from 10 am to 4 pm at the Contemporary Arts Center of New Orleans, which is located at 900 Camp Street.  On Sunday, July 6, the expo will close-out with an exclusive brunch featuring  MsVaughnTV, BlackOnyx, and StrawberriCurls.

For more general and ticket information, visit