30 October 2012

Hair Talk With Danielle

Firstly introduce yourself? Where are you from and what do you do? I'm Danielle. I'm a fashion and music blogger from Philadelphia, PA. My day job is as a sales rep for an Oncology company.

How long have you been natural? always

If all your life what kept you from relaxing your hair? The fear of damaging it kept me from relaxing it. My sister had a bad experience where all of her hair snapped off after relaxing it. She ended up with a 2 inch hairdo afterwards. I decided it would be best to let my curls be themselves!

What are your earliest hair memories? How did these memories influence your hair journey today? My earliest hair memories were struggling to accept my big curly hair. When I was 7 I begged my mom to cut my waist length curls so I could look just like the other girls at school. After lots of nagging she finally caved. I ended up with an enormous pyramid shaped afro which I hated. But the experience made me realize I was never going to have fine straight hair, and that I needed to accept mine for what it was.

What does having naturalhair mean to you? It just means being yourself and learning to love your hair for what it is. Natural curly hair has a lot of personality, and I've learned to accept mine as part of who I am. Now I really like that fact that I have wild hair.

How do you keep your hair looking so good? I try to process it very minimally. I don't dye it and have only altered the color about 5 times in my life. I trim it on my own every few months. I've switched to Loreal's sulfate free moisturizing shampoo and conditioner and use a moroccan oil deep conditioner about once a week.

What products do you use in your hair? If my hair is slicked back it's with Loreal's clean gel and Frizz Ease Moisture Barrier hair spray. When I wear my hair curly I start with Moroccan Oil Intense Curl Cream. Then I add Frizz Ease Weather Works Style Sealant Cream. I put dollop of Loreal Invisigel in my hair. Then I blow dry (without a diffuser although I know that's the normal recommendation for curls). I seal it all with Frizz Ease Moisture Barrier hair spray.

What are your go to hair style? I usually rock a slicked back braid for work. On the weekends or on night's out I either wear it in a high pony tail, a sleek top knot, or down big and curly.

How do you protect your hair in the winter months? Lots of conditioner and hats whenever I can.

Do you have any advice for women starting out on there natural journey? The best advice I can give is what hairdressers have given me: work to enhance your natural hair texture but don't try to change it. And stick with as little product as possible. You can always add more to achieve the desired look, but you can't fix it once you've already piled to much stuff in it.

Tell us about your style? I'm a little bit rock & roll, mixed in with some hippy and a tad bit feminine. My style varies by my mood.

What are your favorite places to shop? Shopbop.com, hautelook.com, Urban Outfitters, Forever 21, and Steve Madden

Any tips for young ladies trying to start there own business/blog ect? Figure out a name and purchase a .com domain before you get started. Pick something that makes sense for what you're writing about. And when it comes to font, less is more. Avoid bright colors and small prints- you don't want your readers getting a migraine when looking at your page! Build a following and some regular readership before approaching sponsors and trying to get affiliate links. And proofread, proofread, proofread!

You can check out my blog if you'd like! 

29 October 2012

The Film Making Fashionista...

Ndoema is a globe trotting film writer and producer, ex model and fashion darling (with a PHD in law, a love for raw food, fluent in many languages.....more) with a mane to die for! 
She blogs at theglobalgirl.com don't forget to sign up to The Global Girl Fashion Cinema Series Ndoemas latest project.

27 October 2012

OOTD: Stair Bandits....

Glasses from Glasses Direct
T-Shirt & Bag from charity shop
Scarf from H&M
Skirt from Zara

26 October 2012

Guest Post: Natural Hair Exhibitions & Debates

This Autumn I’ve been lucky enough to attend and even take part in some of the exhibitions and talks on natural hair.
The first was Talk About Hair, in Brent Cross, north London. Event Organiser Uzi, had been inspired by her own experiences and studies, to host an open discussion about various topics such as misconceptions and acceptability of natural hair. Special guest included Motivational Speaker Action Jackson; Hair Consultants from Hair 9; and Singer Natalie May, who held a mini fashion show and was also selling some of her customized hair turbans.

I was very pleased to purchase more Be Unique Moisture Custard and I finally invested in some Jamaican Black Castor Oil from Shea Butter Cottage.

After the event, some of the other ladies and I continued into central London for more fun, food and drinks and an altogether fabulous night.

The final London-based public talk for the Origins Of The Afro Comb Project was again held in The Petrie Museum. Check out my blog United KinKdom for updates, and if you haven’t had a chance to get involved yet, don’t worry, there’s still time. The Exhibition is set to open in Summer 2013 at the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge and we would still like to hear from anyone who is interested in being involved. The official website was recently launched with details about the exhibition, and video clips of some of the interviews that have already taken place. Make sure you visit www.originsoftheafrocomb.co.uk

I was recently on the debate panel at H.A.I.R: a “one day only” exhibition at Rich Mix in Shoreditch. Other guest speaker included Origins Of The Afro Comb Curator Dr Sally-Ann Ashton; Founder of Be Unique Hair Care Belinda Raji; Co-Founder of Black History Studies Charmaine Simpson; Hairdresser/ Author and Lecturer Sandra Gittens; and Author Ben Arogundade.

My personal highlight of the day had to be getting my book signed by Ben, but I also enjoyed the performances by theatre group Silhouettes In The Dark, and the screening of Bold Black and Beautiful, a hair documentary made in Canada in the 90’s.

As well as a timeline of historical information, there were also exclusive images and artworks for sale; a barbershop corner for the men; and a bedroom-like hub area for chilling out and watching a separate short film on black hair.

I noticed that there seemed to be more men present at the hair exhibitions and debates, than there have been at other events; I wonder if we’ll see increasing numbers involved with hair events in 2013?
Make sure you visit the Unitied KinKdom Events Page for a list of what natural hair events are coming up.

25 October 2012

Choolips SS13 Collection

We are huge fans of clothing line Choolips, the London based ethical fashion label designed by Annegret is a must for fashion lovers with a love of clean lines and a splash of batik. The SS13 collection Planet India is showcased perfectly in this 'diamond petals' look book featuring model Amba Hudson-Skye. I'm in love with  the Melanie dress  pictured above!

Naomi Harris Cover The Stylist + Skyfall Premier

Naomi Harris is not a Bond Girl, She is a Bond woman and the first black woman to be cast in the role of the iconic Miss Moneypenny in 50 years. Naomi has been doing the rounds promoting the movie, covering the commuter magazine The Stylist (working a curly afro!) and wearing Marios Schwab at the Skyfall premier. Lets hope this is the start of a glittering career for the 30 something actress that has been skirting on the edge of super stardom for sometime now.

Ombre Nails!!

20 October 2012

My Hair....

My hair has been in mini twists for over 4 months now, I'm reluctant to call them locs just yet as only a few segments are locked together. I don't do much to my hair, bar washing it weekly and using H20 & Castor Oil. In terms of a locking technique I don't really have one, some parts can still be re-twisted where other parts I have been finger latching, other than that I'm just leaving it to do it's thing.

June 2012

17 October 2012

5 Minute Make Up

It's been a few weeks since my life got turned upside down by the little lady, today after my first full nights sleep (thank you Mr Naturalbelle & god bless expressing milk!) I actually felt like putting on make up! I had a spare 5 minutes between being pooped on, cue my baby proof make up regimen.

The perfect foundation, easy to apply and the perfect shade Maybelines dream matte mousse is my saviour (apply with sponge for even application )

Red lipstick always makes you look like you made more of an effort than you actually did the shade I'm wearing is by MUA in Shade 1

Finally something to wake up those sleep deprived eyes! Benefits Peek-a-brighteyes great for highlighting your peepers and comes with an easy step by step guide for speed and ease (it's idiot proof I promise!)

Not sure when I'll find another 5 minutes to myself so I shall be making the most of today....anyway it's back to Mummyland for now! 

the new normal :)

16 October 2012

The Cover Solange For Elle SA

The Review: Honey Curls Mist Conditioner

I've always been a fan of hair products formulated for children, I figure if it is mild enough for our precious little one's then it is mild enough for our own natural curls. Since becoming pregnant lots of brands have sent me products for children (erm note to brands the baby is not here yet and it would be a long long while before we'll be needing hair product!) I however have enjoyed trying out some of the products myself. 
Honey Curls is one that I have found nice to use, especially the Styling Spritz, which I've been using to to refresh my mini  twists daily.  Honey Curls is not 100% natural so perhaps not great for the natural purists out there. But if you are not opposed to chemicals I found the spritz works really well at refreshing my style without fuss.

Honey Curls will be available to sample in the November CurlBox & Curlkit sample boxes

Honey Mist Conditioner™
A conditioning mist that acts as a protective agent and adds moisture and shine

Deionized water, Glycerin, Behentrimonium Methosulfate, Cetearyl Alcohol
Cetyl Alcohol, Polysorbate 20, Glyceryl Stearate SE Caprylic Capric Triglycerides Theobroma Cocoa
Coconut Oil, Amino Acid Blend, Polyquaternium-7, Grape seed oil
Argania Spinosa Creatine, Disodium EDTA Fragrance, Honey, Hydroxyethyl Cellulose
Methylisothiazolinone, Phenethyl Alcohol, PPG-2- Methyl Ether, Panthenol
Sodium Hyaluronate 

Check out the 3 step system at WWW.HONEYCURLS.COM

8 October 2012

Freya's Birth Story....

After carrying this baby for nine months I was so ready for the little one to make and appearance on her due date, as my due date came and went I cursed the people that said 'ooooh you gonna go early I can tell' yeah right!!! after several stretch and sweeps which did nothing but make me fear my midwife and her rubber gloves, gallons of rose leaf tea, curries  and nipple stimulation, 10 days after my due I was still pregnant!!
I was starting to think things would just not happen naturally and awaited my induction date with a mixture of excitement and pure dread!

Thankfully, 9am Thursday morning I started to get regular mild cramping in my lower abdomen and back they were 10-15 minutes apart, as I had no idea what contractions felt like it took me a while to realise this was the real deal!
This continued all day and into the night 3am Friday  morning the cramps turned in to full on contraction 6-8 minutes apart by Saturday morning 12am I went into labour and delivery to be accessed and I'd managed to get to 5cm dilated.  

I was booked in and went to labour ward. I was hoping for a water birth however all pools where taken so a dimmed relaxed environment was my next best thing. 
After 5 hours I was checked again by my midwife and was actually only 4cm dilated!!!! I hadn't slept for 2 days so decided to have diamorphine  just to get some rest as contractions where thick and fast! I loves that stuff! Got some much needed rest only to be faced with the fact that I still wasn't progressing and only 4cm dilated still!!

Ended up being put on hormone drip to bring on more contractions it worked bringing on 4 every 10 minutes that where very strong, tried gas and air and threw up!! had to have more diamorphine only to be told I'd still not dilated further (this was at 12pm Saturday)  they turned up the hormones which then gave me some crazy pains, so I had an epidural whilst having it inserted I threw up again this time like the exorcist as I projectile vomited green sick. They checked my cervix and I had not progressed baby was in an awkward position. So my birth plan went truly out the window.

I had to have a c-section as did about 6 other people so waited about 4 hours as I was low risk. 
I had a good cry over the loss of my magical natural labour where my baby would ascend from my vagina on a cloud surrounded unicorns! not ripped from my gut by some surgeon. Mr naturalbelle was a great help in telling me that I had done great and hadn't failed at giving birth! (after the section I would be told my frame would not have allowed for me to deliver vaginally as babies head was quite (very!) large!)

c section went without a hitch, besides feeling like someone is doing the washing up in your stomach! our surprise little girl Freya was born 17:18 weighing 9lbs 2oz 

So my labour didn't go as intended but overall I had a really the good experience, the staff at the Royal Berkshire hospital were amazing, and made the process really relaxed and at some points quite enjoyable.

Mr Naturalbelle was AMAZING, he did so well and was so positive and kept me going throughout the 3 days.

and now the real hard work begins.....


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