transitioning hair

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3 Hair Products You Need Immediately

3 Hair Products You Need Immediately

I’ve been known to accidentally say some stupid stuff. Like, REALLY stupid. During a seventh grade oral report, I referred to a certain South African icon as “Howie Mandela.” I wondered if buffalos had wings long before Jessica Simpson did. The first time I got really drunk, I loudly asked my cousin’s Bahamian boyfriend — in front of a huge group of people — if he was gay (and you know West Indians do not play that shit). Last week, I uttered a comment that rivals all of these. It was at a launch event for a fabulous Dark & Lovely product (more on that in a minute), featuring their spokesmodel, Bria Murphy — daughter of Eddie and Nicole, the ex-model currently heating up “Hollywood Exes.” Of course, I sidled up to her and instantly asked how she felt about her mom being on that show. But instead of saying Nicole Murphy, I said “Tracey Edmonds” — who Eddie was married to for like five minutes a couple years ago.


Oh Bria…I’m SO sorry, boo. #partyfoul #canttakemeanywhere


She just kinda looked at me, and I giggled and quickly cleaned the whole thing up. But GAAAH. I should just show up to things with an interpreter from now on.

In happier news, the product they launched was truly kinda groundbreaking. Dark & Lovely’s new 6 Week Anti-Reversion Cream SerumĀ  ($8.99) holds curls, waves and kinks at bay for up to six weeks between relaxers!! How fabulous is this? And because your relaxed hair stays smoother and straighter for longer, you’ll need to use less heat, which means less damage. Everyone wins. To use, you just apply a quarter size amount through damp hair before blow-drying. SO maje for relaxed girls.

Okay, so you also need these two new products…

1.) Mizani Supreme Oil ($14), a crazy-nourishing blend of argan, sunflower, olive, apricot and avocado oils (so good for hot oil treatments, or just as a blowdry oil or shine serum). It’s luscious, and lightweight, and doubles as a kickass antidote to ashy skin. Plus, it’s 99% plant-derived, so it doesn’t have an artificial bone in it’s sleek little body.

2.) Clear Scalp & Hair Therapy’s new Ultra Shea Balm ($5.99), an offering from a boss new hair brand that focus on a healthy scalp (honestly, it’s where long, healthy hair starts. You stuff will not grow if your scalp’s dry, or clogged up with dead skin and product buildup). This is my favorite product from the line — it’s a general styling hairdress, but you can also use it to moisturize your scalp directly. In short? It smells terrific and gives hair a pretty, healthy-looking sheen.

Naturalista Chicery at the CurlBox Meetup

Naturalista Chicery at the CurlBox Meetup

Karen Tappin and Myleik Teele, running thangs at their meet-up last night.


Hi girls! Last night, I found myself at what seemed to be the very epicenter of fab naturalista chic-ery — curlBOX’s soiree at famed Karen’s Body Beautiful in Fort Greene, BK. A little backstory: curlBOX, founded by my girl Myleik Teele, is a way to experience curly hair products at an insanely low price (for $20, subscribers received 5-7 samples a month). And Karen’s Body Beautiful spa carries a house brand of all-natural black hair products that are legendary among naturalistas (the Sweet Ambrosia Leave-in Conditioner is most coveted). Blended by the gloriously fro’d owner, Karen Tappin, the line is super-hydrating and restorative — and they smell divine.


Karen, Bobina and me! Funniest part of the event? A guy outside was banging congos -- and Bobina handed her doll to me so she could do a quick half-crump.


Naturally, I couldn’t wait to stop by — and I even brought my curly progeny, Miss Lina Bobina. I’ve covered a ton of natural hair meetups during my run at, but I’ve never attended one as an almost-chemical-free chica, myself. I saw the whole thing with brand new, covetous eyes! There were hundreds of swaggy bombshells there, with some of the sexiest ‘dos I’ve ever seen — ringlets, fros, waist-length dreads, twist-outsĀ  — and makeup game for days.


I meeaaan...


I saw two particularly stunning girls outside in the block-long line…and being me, I attacked them, demanding to know their beauty secrets.




How CUTE, right? Here’s the tee from the chick on the left, Sherena, who’s been natural for a year and a half: “I’m wearing MAC Eyeshadow in Steamy…I thought the teal was a pretty contrast with the yellow. The lip is MAC Lipstick in Bubbles. And I make my own blend of shea butter, jojoba oil and coconut oil for my hair — I use it as a moisturizer and a twisting cream!”

The cutie on the right, Ingrid, has been chemical-free since ’09 and loves a statement lip: “It’s Wet & Wild Lipstick in Stoplight Red. I love the pop, plus I’m trying to keep it cost effective! And I’m a huge fan of Giovanni Direct Leave-in Conditioner and the Bee Mine Curly Butter.”

Sigh. Forget celebs and models, sometimes the most inspiring/aspirational looks come from the chick up the block. Ladies, what makeup and hair looks are inspiring you these days?


Bobina, finding inspiration at the meetup from her lovely new friend :)