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Twist Out Falls Flat

Perhaps I had the wrong idea about my twists. After all the work that I did, I was more focused on the great moment of undoing them and having cute curls. I don’t think I appreciated the “cocoon” stage that my hair was in while in twists. I think I failed to understand that twists themselves are just as pretty as twists outs.

After I trimmed all of my twists, I hopped into the shower and got my hair wet. That was a bit of a mistake, because some of them started to unravel at the ends. I towel dried and went to bed with a satin cap and flattened my hair a lot. By the time I work up and took them down, the result was not very impressive at all. At least not “butterfly” enough to take a picture of. I kind of wished I could go back to my “cocoon” stage.

I feel like there might be a grander metaphor in there somewhere.


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Day 2 on Twists!

Hey people, I’ve finally mini twisted! Evelyn was my muse. I did it in 2 hours without meaning to, but I did it while watching Saturday Night Live with Noah. It was a flat episode but these twists were poppin’. Anyway, while I’m in twists, I thought I should go ahead and trim. I went ahead and cut the raggedy edges of each twist. Hopefully this won’t disturb the shape of my righteous fro later and correct my split ends.

Not a real change in photos.  No glasses?

I’m going to co-wash again while I’m twisted. I hope to take these puppies down tomorrow and get a good wave or curl. I shall post pictures of the twist out. Keep fingers crossed!


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My Curly Haired White Boy

I definitely want to talk about married life with my white husband and how that’s effected my hair journey. Noah is also a curly, in his own Caucasian way, but he’s learned a lot about black hair. While we dated he watched in utter fascination while I stood in the bathroom carefully flat-ironing my hair, burning my ears and fingers. When I ran my fingers through his hair and commented on his curly “kitchen,” he was delighted to learn such an interesting new word for the nape of his neck.

Noah and me while dating

One evening when I picked my hair out into the most righteous afro and wore it around the apartment, Noah saw it and told me how gorgeous I was. “You should wear that ALL the time.” Needless to say, I looked at him like he was crazy. I explained to him that black women don’t walk around like that in public.

Why not? he asked.

I was forced to give him an answer that made sense. I couldn’t find one. Why not, indeed. Black women don’t go out and about natural. To say those words out loud were just ridiculous. He told me so. I tried to explain it the best I could. But in the end, I tried it out. It was a wild experience taking such a boss fro into the world.

Noah was there during my Big Chop, he drove while I sat in the passenger’s seat sobbing about my “loss.” He was perplexed but supportive. He watched the Chris Rock documentary “Good Hair” with me and he learned what black hair industry was really like. He has made room for all of my hair concoctions on the bathroom counter. He’s excited at the prospect of raising some curly headed kids with me.

Through teaching him so much about this culture, I’ve learned a lot about myself. It’s outsider, a white man, who has taught me about loving my natural black self. The irony was not lost on him either 🙂

Our wedding 2009


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Natural Debate

 What is your definition of “Natural?” 
 When I first started with this journey, I thought being natural was 
No Chemicals Relaxers/Perms
and 
No Flat Ironing.
I told my husband: “If you noticed that bathroom door closed for about 40 minutes and there’s burning smell in the house, please tell me to turn off the flat iron.” I have kept away from my hot styling tools since December and I’m proud of myself. I wanted to get that natural curl back and now that I’ve got it, I’m flirting with the idea of straighten again. I like having variety and believe I look great straight or curly. I just have different hair moods!
Now, this might disappoint or turn some readers off. But is it wrong to apply some heat to your head and call yourself a natural at the same time? Would I be ruining my ethos as a natural hair blogger if I turn back?
Am I a flat ironing wolf in natural sheep’s wool?
or
Is excluding chemicals natural enough?

I would love to hear your thoughts.


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Not in the Right Order?

I had a strange hair journey isn’t very much like most natural sisters I’ve been reading about. I’ve read and heard of a lot of women getting relaxers and salon perms for most of their childhoods, they wake up and decide they want to start over, so then comes the BIG CHOP! From there, they are reborn. . .

. . . they embrace their curls. . .

They are now Natural.

I wish I could say I had that same self-actualization, but it was a lot more muddled than that.

I had a mother who didn’t like dealing with relaxers, so I didn’t get them done too often. I can think of a handful of times when I had a relaxer as a child. Most of the time, I was just working with natural hair. It was long and pretty curly. As a young adult though, I ran into problems when I started handling it too much.

Hard Brushing
Tight Ponytails
Wet Combing
Stringent Shampoos
Hardly Moisturized

My 25th Birthday in Bangkok, Thailand

 I got some significant damage and about two years ago when I returned from Thailand, I noticed a significant length change and lots of breakage. Hair was in the sink and I was in a hair rut. That’s when I decided, last year, I would try a BIG CHOP! Only I would try a cute pixie cut that would mimic Rhianna’s. I got my hair relaxed after the chop and didn’t realize I was holding myself back even further! I had taken my old habits into an even more fragile situation.

After the Big Chop and Perm

 I wasn’t ready for the up and down emotions I would have while having much LESS hair and not continuing with perm treatments. I had a short half-natural, that was curl in the back and straight in the front. I was frustrated and didn’t feel pretty or feminine at all. I thought that none of this would be an issue if I had just left my hair care in the hands of my mother. At the age of 26, I know that’s pretty silly. I would have to learn all by myself how to take care of my hair.

With the help of my friend Evelyn, (who was working out her own hair issues but progressing much quicker than myself), I was turned on to moisture rich ideas and tips to get my hair back to the way it was!

It’s still a struggle and it’s our hope that this blog and others like it are helpful to women making the transition from straight to curly. Although my story didn’t go in the same order as others, it’s all the same exploration into the world of healthy hair!

Today’s hair, a bit longer, lots healthier!


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Product Review: Kinky Curly Come Clean Shampoo


Product Advertisement: A moisturizing, cleansing, non-stripping, organic shampoo.

Price: $12 (plus $5 for shipping from Curlmart.com)

Ingredients: Purified water, organic mandarin orange fruit, organic marigold flower, organic white willow bark, organic sea kelp, c14-16 olefin sulfonate and cocamidopropyl betaine (coconut derived), citric acid, sea salt, phenoxyethnol, and natural fragrance.

Consistency: A gel-like liquid

Smell: The shampoo smells like a fresh-sliced orange.

Review: I really like this shampoo. It did exactly what it was advertised to do on my hair. This is the ONLY shampoo that I have used since going natural, that has not left my hair dry and brittle upon contact. I wouldn’t say that the shampoo added any moisture to my hair, but it certainly didn’t take any away. I did not have to use a whole lot (something like 4 tablespoons) of the product and it had great lather. I also really like the orange fruit smell of this shampoo. I have no critique of this product. My only issue is that I have to order it online because it is not sold in my town!

Places you may find this product: Target, Whole Food stores, Curlmart.com, Kinkycurly.com

Would I purchase this product again: YES!!!

~Evelyn


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St. Paddy Fro!

I worked St. Patrick’s Day at the bar last night. Yep, I still working there, not fired yet. My friend got this photo of me with my festive fro, perhaps the best accessory I wore that night. I just wound a wire garland around my hair giving it a “orbiting solar system” look. Lot’s of compliments, people really dug it. I love jazzing up my afro!


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A State Of The Hair Address



Bunning. This is a style I like to call my “pseudo-bun”. My hair is not quite long enough to form a donut-shaped bun in which the hair folds out and under. So what I do is pull my hair up with a band like I am doing a “puff”, then gather all of the hair into the center and begin placing bobby pins in it to secure it. Sometimes it looks neater than other times, sometimes it’s bigger or smaller than other times. This is a great go-to style when in a rush or when my hair just isn’t acting right. Lately my hair has been dry. Lacking moisture. Semi-rough. I just cannot seem to keep moisture in it. I’m not sure if it is the changing seasons (winter to spring) or the new shampoo and conditioner I’m using (I will do a review later when I decide how I feel about the products). Shampooing my hair has always made it a little dry. It doesn’t matter whether I use a natural or n0n-natural shampoo. The end result (the next day after the wash) is dryness. This is why I prefer to condition wash. Every once in awhile I feel that I need to cleanse and clarify my hair though and I’m just not convinced that my conditioner can cleanse my hair like a shampoo would. I could be wrong… I am going to stick with co-washing (condition washing) 3 times a month and shampooing once a month. If the dryness persists, I may have to change some things. I also deep condition over night the night before I wash my hair. This ALWAYS makes my hair soft, shiny, deep in color, and moisturized. I will be co-washing my hair pretty soon so I look forward to getting rid of this dryness. I’ll keep you posted…literally;)

-Eve


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National Afro Day

This 4th of July, take back your freedom from the chemical imperialists! Too long you have been nervous to leave house without slicking back your edges or straightening your bangs. Put all of that madness aside for today and wear it FREE! Live Free and Pick Proud! Show solidarity with your brothers and sisters on this day and wear your afro proudly.