L.A Colors Makeup Review

Hyperpigmentation, acne, scarring, and eczema, are just a few examples of many types of skin issues. Many factors contribute to the type of skin you have. Genetics, bacteria trapped in skin pores, fungus, viruses, a weak immune system, underlying illnesses, or even just stress can create a skin disorder.

A quick solution to covering up skin blemishes is wearing makeup. An inexpensive makeup brand that you can buy from your local CVS or Dollar Tree is LA Colors. From highlighter to lipgloss, their coverage is superb.

L.A Colors Lipgloss

Image Credit: Walmart

Lipgloss provides the double feat of creating a full coverage of color and moisture. LA Colors Lipgloss is a fan favorite because it allows for a high level of shine/rich color. My personal favorite is the Glossy Lips Collection. The shade “Tropical Punch” is red and is great for darker skin tones. The “Dreamy Pink” shade works well with lighter skin tones. 

Their Sheer Tube Glossy Lip Gloss is cruelty-free, which means they were manufactured by methods that do not harm animals. The price range is $1-$2.

Image Credit: LA Colors

L.A Colors Contour & Highlight

My Small LA Colors Collection

If you have naturally clear skin, wearing contour and highlight by itself is perfectly fine. Contour drives focus on your cheekbones, jawline, and hairline. Highlighter enhances your browbone, forehead, and nose bridge. 

For women of color, the LA Colors ” I Heart Makeup” Contour Palette offers light to darker shades. You can sculpt and define key facial features by blending different contour shades.

Highlighters can give you a shimmery, glowy look. Try out the “So Cheeky” blush and highlight palette to get your unique fabulous look. The cost of either contour or highlight is $6-$7.

Eyeshadow

I never realized the versatility of eyeshadow until I started to look into tutorials of makeup artists using eyeshadow to cover dark circles. Test out different colors even if it means blending more than one together to cancel out the puffy dark bags. Usually, a reddish and deep tan eyeshadow works. L.A Colors Eyeshadow Nude is ideal for mixing & matching. You can purchase this specific eyeshadow at Dollar Tree for $1.25.

Bronze It Up

Image Credit: LA Colors

I personally love bronzer because it reminds me of brown glitter. Its primary purpose is to add a healthy warm look to your skin. Make sure you blend it in along the perimeter of your face. Avoid overdoing it, and put any excess that you have left over on your nose, chin, and neck. For deeper skin tones, look for a reddish undertone bronzer. For lighter skin tones, seek out orange tones. L.A Colors bronzer comes in natural, beachy, spice, tanned, and deep tan matte shades.

Before applying makeup, make sure that you wash your face with lukewarm water. Choose a cleanser that works well with your skin type, lather, and massage. Rinse and then pat dry.

L.A Colors Bronzer, Highlighter, and Lipgloss Application

Makeup is something some women only wear on important occasions. Some like to wear it every day. Regardless of how often you wear it, make sure that you take the necessary steps to protect your skin and don’t apply too much. All in all, I give L.A Colors makeup brand an 8/10 only because I have only tried their lipgloss, highlight, and bronzer. In the future when I try out their concealer, blush, nail tips, mascara, eyeliner, lip liner, and lipstick, I can give a more detailed analysis. If you want to get a glam look without spending too much, L.A Colors is the right pick.

My Loc Journey

By: Queen SueSue

I have been natural for 7 years now. WOW. It definitely has been an uphill battle, but I would not change a thing. I have learned a lot about 4c hair, maintenance, what not to use, and loc repair. I also feel closer to my African roots and conscious of my ancestor’s findings. 

Many have jumped on the bandwagon simply because locs now is a trending hairstyle. I chose it because it aligned with my free spirit and gives me more free time. I want to extend some seeds of wisdom so others can learn from my milestones and mistakes

Don’t Be a Product Junkie

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

It is relatable that hair products have a special type of allure. The sweet smell. The moisturizing texture. The model with picture-perfect hair posing on the front of the bottle. Don’t binge on tests/trials with too many hair products. The buildup will be hard to get out of your locs. 

You don’t want to overspend on hair products when you know that the natural route was meant for simplicity. Think of oils that you love to use for your food. Olive oil, jojoba oil, and black seed oil are all perfect ingredients to add to a bottle of water. Lightly spritz your hair to retain moisture and then let it be. Too much manipulation can be detrimental. 

Self-Love Your Roots

Photo by Joshua Mcknight on Pexels.com

To each his own, but I often get perplexed by those who claim they love their hair but perm their baby edges! Like what? You can’t nourish one part of your hair while chemically frying the outline. That sounds like an oxymoron to me.

Investing in self-love can save you from financial ruin in the future. If you want to retire comfortably or even early, you have to start teaching yourself how to budget. Love the natural beauty you were born with. Be self-aware of the educational expenses you can cover when less is spent on outward appearance. 

Learn Loc Lingo

Image Credit: achievement.org

You can’t just rely solely on a loctician. Do needed research so you can find which type of locs you prefer. So far there are:

  • Two Stand Twists
  • Comb Coils
  • Braids
  • Interlocking
  • Semi-free form
  • Free-form

I started my locs with comb coils, then transitioned to interlocking. And now I’m maintaining a semi-freeform look. It’s giving Lauryn Hill vibes. More of thick bushy curls, versus a manicured scalpy look.

Concluding Thoughts

When I think of the pain my ancestors went through, I often wonder as a descendant why add more? Wigs are ok from time to time, but the constant pain of pulling, weaving, perming, or ironing 4c hair is a road I’d rather not travel on ever again. Next up on my loc journey is a much-needed trimming and loc repair. An enriching protein treatment. Possible dark coloring to cover up lint/buildup. But nothing major. 

Ultimately, I want all of my Queens to have healthy hair. Rock styles that stay true and authentic to you. Live your best natural life.

Would you like to start a loc journey yourself? If you have, how is it going?

The Chinese Exploitation of Black Beauty

Image Credit: Radii China

Just this Monday, June 20th was World Refugee Day. The United Nations created an international day to celebrate and honor refugees from around the world. While African countries welcome European and Middle Eastern refugees with open hands, migrants from the motherland routinely receive the cold shoulder. To the woke eye, this is very disheartening.

I am an avid watcher of World News. My journalistic mindset never wavers even when I go through writer’s block. I keenly view snippets of BBC News Africa online. One series that delves deep is called “BBC Africa Eye”. In a recent episode, I watched in horror as Chinese filmmaker Lu Ke casually exploited village kids in Malawi. Children that were clearly supposed to be in school were being taught to say insults in Chinese such as “My IQ is low” and “I am a black monster”. He was exposed by an undercover journalist and later arrested.

Image of Lu Ke Credit: BBC Africa Eye

Incidents of the Chinese race exploiting the Black race are not new. I see that almost every time I walk into a beauty/hair supply store. As a Grand Rapids resident, I can think of 5 local beauty/hair supply stores that cater to the black race, with black hair care products filling the shelves. I frequently shop at all of them, and it is obvious that they are mostly owned by Chinese people. When you are “shopping while black”, assumptions are made. Being profiled as a potential shoplifter is to be expected. That is why online stores have become a safe space for women of color. No one wants to feel like they are being watched while searching for their favorite hairspray.

Photo by Godisable Jacob

While black women in the U.S worry about racial profiling, black women within the African diaspora face even bigger issues. The market for human hair is booming. The African hair care business is a multi-billion dollar industry, with an estimated $1.1 billion being spent on shampoos, relaxers, and hair lotions in South Africa, Nigeria, and Cameroon alone.

China owns 70% of human hair factories. Black salons make 80% of their income from human hair products. While the Black community spends a lot of their earnings on human hair extensions, most of that money goes back into the hands of the Asian community.

The Asian Advantage

Image Credit: SupChina

Any black beauty enthusiast would feel puzzled at the harsh reality of where most of our shopping revenue goes. From the surface level, it would appear that we do support each other. I have attended many pop-up business events where black-owned businesses received consumers from the black community in an abundance. So what is giving so many Chinese beauty shop owners the upper hand?

Because China is universally the epicenter of where a lot of products are made, Chinese people can get products for extremely cheap based on their connections. 

The average black woman’s path to entrepreneurship is not peaches and cream. You don’t automatically have connections. To succeed in a short amount of time you would need to have ample start-up funds. And even then, to get a low price you would have to either form partnerships overseas or with a Chinese vendor.

This has created a low percentage of black women who own small beauty supply stores. Less than 10 percent to be exact. It is as if our Queens are fighting for a piece of pie that we never really had fair access to, to begin with.

An Easier Alternative

A lower-cost alternative to trying to start a beauty supply store is buying a hair vending machine. These machines cost as low as $9,995 and can be leased for as little as $249 a month (with good credit of course). That is less than half of what it would cost you to start a beauty supply store. Place it in a popular high-traffic area and you are looking at making $500 up to $2,000 a month.

Also, the cool thing about vending machines is that you can put whatever product you want. It can be handmade products or popular name brand products. And there are chains of vending machines like Tress Obsessed Beauty Vending that specifically stock beauty products for WOC. 

Where there is a will, there is a way. Many WOC are creating unique hair products from the kitchen of their own homes. We are constantly inventing new effective methods to treat and care for natural hair. And we are here for it. We are here for diversity, inclusivity, and profiting from our black beauty. 

Y’all my African Beauty And Braids blog has organically gained 1,000 followers and over 900 likes on Facebook! Woot, woot! Feel free to comment below and let me know what topics in the realm of African Beauty And Braids you want to get addressed. “My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.” ― Maya Angelou

The Liberian Entrepreneur Who Is Making 50K a month Selling Jewelry

Photo Credit: Millie’s International Creations/ Facebook

Many people give up on their dreams and ambitions before seeing the breakthrough that they always wanted. This can come from a plethora of reasons. Lack of funds, lack of confidence, or lack of hard work ethic.

Penny Clarke is an exception to the masses. She started her company 6 years ago and saw her sales explode from $5,000 a month to $50,000 a month during this COVID pandemic. Here’s how she did it.

Humble Beginnings

Photo Credit: Monrovia, Liberia Pinterest

Penny is the last baby of 8 children. She was born and raised in Monrovia, Liberia. She looked up to her mother who worked as a schoolteacher and sold cornbread to make ends meet. Seeing that her mother had a side hustle inspired her to expand her streams of income. She migrated to the United States at age 16 to further her education. Her mother passed away in 2014 from congestive heart failure, which moved her to be more committed to helping women of color achieve their dreams.

In 2015 a trip to South Africa inspired her to build a team of African designers. Together they created a line of necklaces, earrings, bracelets, headwraps, handbags, and more. When her company was first launched she was still working as a government employee in Washington D.C. The pandemic has really propelled a lot of online businesses in the right direction. Economists are coining 2021 as the year of “The Great Resignation”. People are quitting their jobs in droves to pursue remote work.

Inflation is a huge issue within the job market. With travel restrictions still in place, many are taking this time to go back to school and really pursue what they love to do. Immigration and work visas have also been on the decline, which means they are a shortage of foreigners to take on jobs that are temporary and seasonal. Many “quitters” are not quitting work entirely. They are on the search for better opportunities.

Penny is among those who are taking a leap of faith to invest in an online business. The memories of how resilient her mother was accompanied by her love of travel, fashion, and foreigners birthed “Millie’s International Creations”. Most of her online boutiques’ materials are derived from Africa.

How Her Business Grew

Photo by Christina Morillo on Pexels.com

Digital marketing is an in-demand skill because it can powerfully scale a business from zero to hero. Facebook ad campaigns can target your ideal demographics. A website with a sales funnel can generate awareness, consideration, and qualified leads which can turn into daily buyers.

Penny attributes her growing sales to the digital marketing agency 7th Pro Solutions. “When I started working with Edwin Jardin (the founder of 7th Pro Solutions), he really helped me to create a sales funnel for my website that has literally increased my revenue by 500%. My company now gets sales every single day, and it’s a challenge to keep up with inventory – which is a great problem to have.”

Creating a sales funnel can be a daunting task when you try to do it alone. The 3 main stages of a sales funnel are awareness, consideration, and decision. During awareness, a potential buyer is shown the product or service. How well the advertisement is towards gaining awareness is crucial for consideration. The 2nd stage, consideration is when interest is sparked. The person’s curiosity ignites in them the desire to buy. The last stage, the decision is when the buyer decides to buy a product or service.

7th Pro Solutions is a Digital Marketing Agency that focuses on accelerating business growth through effective strategies. Facebook ads can cause sales conversions to grow rapidly. Each ad has to be tailored to your individual social media platform. A business manager usually decides to use Facebook advertising in a strategic marketing plan when they want to reach new qualified prospecting audiences.

Are You A Passionpreneur?

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

Millie’s International Creations has a simple mission statement: “Millie’s aims to bring quality merchandise by women designers and artisans at an affordable price to the U.S. market. Part of our proceeds benefits various nonprofits around the world. I am continually traveling and seeking out women who wish to achieve their dreams and support their families through their craft.”

What’s your craft? Is there any hobby of yours that gives you butterflies anytime you daydream about it? Turning your dreams into reality takes investment, a concrete business plan, and a supportive team that works in harmony with your goals. During this pandemic, hustling can open many avenues if you are persistent.

Starting a side hustle can push you to expand past the boundaries in your comfort zone. Need some inspiration? Check out Etsy. You can take common household items to create your own handmade goods. From hats to unique bracelets, people love creations that took time and skill to make. Writing an e-book that inspires others can help you to make connections in the blogging industry. Take your expertise in a field to teach valuable lessons to others.

Monetizing your social media is another way to start building an online business. Instagram is the top social media platform for making sales. Once you have over 10,000 followers, you can monetize your posts and close deals with advertisers. Facebook Marketplace is another great place to create listings and sell handmade items. It’s free to start and you can share your items in various Facebook business groups.

Do you have a success story similar to Penny Clarke? Sound off below!

Business Spotlight: Curls Queen

During these hot summer months, sometimes we need a break from wearing our hair out. Extensions offer the unique advantage of versatility and protection. Finding extensions that match a tight coily hair texture can be a task. Curls Queen online hair store provides textured human hair extensions, wigs, and ponytails. They offer high-grade human hair with at least a 6-month lifespan. Our lives can get hectic, and styling natural hair does take time. With Curls Queen extensions, you’ll be out the door in no time!

Vlogger Ms. Naturally Mary Rocking Curls Queen Extensions

Advantages of Yaki Clip-Ins

When worn properly, clip-ins are a great way to add volume and length to your natural hair. You can use them as a reference as to how long your natural hair can grow with added time and correct maintenance. They won’t feel too heated or add too much weight to your scalp. Do you have commitment issues? Yaki clip-ins can give you the chance to experiment with the type of hairstyles you want to try.

Vlogger Porsche Lua Showing Off Her Curls Queen Clip-Ins

Flexible. Growth stages while embarking on this natural hair journey can vary from person to person. Some women of color can grow long hair naturally in a matter of months, while others’ growth can take years. Yaki hair matches 4c curls while giving you a “wow” factor that you want during date night or special events.

Confidence builder. Your hair can reach lengths that you haven’t reached before if you regularly keep it covered in a protective style. Curly hair can quickly get tangled, dry, and overwhelming. Yaki-clip-ins can cover your natural hair, giving it a shield from the sun and other natural elements. The added length is also a confidence booster. Clip-ins can enhance your natural beauty. Have you ever had a bad hair day and no amount of frizz control could contain your hair? Try clip-ins. It is worth the purchase.

No heat is needed. A lot of naturalists will admit that in the past the constant use of curling irons did cause burns to their scalp and breakage to their strands. Curling irons when not used in moderation can fry your hair. Clip-ins don’t require any heated devices. Once you know what your hair type is, you will see that Curls Queen has hair extensions that blend in with kinky hair. No hassle, no pain.

Drawstring Ponytails Are Beneficial

Beginner-friendly options are all the rage since many are jumping on the self-care bandwagon. With a Curls Queen Convert-Cap Wig, you have the benefit of an easy hairstyle that can be done in a few minutes. You can cornrow your hair and add a ponytail. Using the rubber band or threading option also works. Or french twist your hair into a drawstring ponytail. The styling options are limitless. 

Image Credit: Curls Queen

Custom-made design. Be authentically you with a style that brings out your face the most. With drawstring ponytails, you can sleek your hair back and wear your hair up. This is a perfect look for professional business settings. And you don’t have to worry about it feeling too tight. Curls Queen has a breathable and flexible cap that you can simply place over your natural ponytail. It comes in different lengths and colors, so you can order one that best suits you.

Versatility. With an updo comes the use of headbands, scarves, and hair accessories. Almost anything you can think of. It can adapt to many looks. Curls Queen Converti-Cap Wig has many uses. Its adjustable drawstring can stretch or shrink to fit your hair. It is made with human hair, so you can rest assured that it is high-quality. 

Washable. Keeping extensions clean is imperative to your hairstyles lasting long. It is not recommended that you do not blow-dry extensions, because it can cause major hair fallout. Just wet the clip-ins thoroughly. Purchase sulfate-free shampoo to rinse your clip-ins with. After washing with shampoo, allow your extensions to sit in a conditioner for at least 10-15 minutes. Rinse out and gently comb your hair. Then hang it up for air dry. It is advised to only wash hair extensions every 4 to 6 weeks. Hair extensions do not receive natural oils as natural hair does. They also are more liable to breakage. So using a wide-tooth comb when styling is best.

Curls Queen has many positive reviews and ideal textures for African hair. Whether you have 3a or 4b hair, need light yaki to coarse yaki, or a coarse kinky blowout, you can use them as a one-stop-shop for hair extensions. 

Have you tried out clip-in extensions for your natural hair before? Sound off below!

Edge Naturale: Trust It Or Trash it?

Your edges, commonly referred to as baby hairs, are the most delicate strands on your head. They grow along your hairline. You have to keep them protected to prevent losing them because your edges help to frame your face. 

When your protective style is too tight your edges will be damaged. I have had thinning edges from wearing protective wigs that were too tight for my head. Using Edge Naturale follicle enhancer was a great choice. It has helped me to grow not only my edges but also other problem areas.

How Do Edges Get Damaged?

So many factors can affect the healthiness of your edges. Hair loss can be caused by alopecia, which is a condition that results in your hair falling out in small patches. Tension from tight overprotective hairstyles can suffocate your follicles. Hormonal changes and chemical damage like perms can create hair breakage. Nutritional deficiencies can attack the immune system, which can lead to hair loss as well.

Visible hair loss can cause you to be stressed, have low self-esteem, and feel anxious. Trying to cover and hide your edges can cause more harm than good. It is best to look for a solution that is affordable and safe. 

What Makes Edge Naturale Trustworthy?

So many expensive hair product companies make products that don’t deliver. You can end up becoming a hair product junkie, spending way too much on products that are full of chemicals, and fail your expectations. Edge Naturale Follicle Enhancer is easy to use, isn’t costly, and has natural ingredients. Essential oils can keep your hairline moisturized. Edge Naturale contains Argan and Jojoba oils. Argan oil is full of antioxidants and vitamin E. It can help to soothe a dry and itchy scalp. Jojoba oil contains vitamin B, vitamin C, copper, and zinc. It strengthens your hair. Edge Naturale has a unique blend of cruelty-free, naturally sourced elements that promote hair growth.

Easy To Use

Edge Naturale can be easily added to your hair regimen. Simply:

  1. Cleanse your edges and your problem areas with a warm, damp cloth. 
  2. Apply a thin layer of the follicle enhancer to your hair.
  3. Gently massage it in.

And that’s it! In only 30 days you should see results.

My Personal Results

I tried Edge Naturale with a skeptical mindset. I am always trying and testing hair products to see what will work for my locs and some products have not given many results. They just left me with a buildup and a headache. While using Edge Naturale I immediately felt a soothing sensation. It smells great. I applied it every day and I could see a difference after about a month of usage. My edges have grown back and my problem areas, mainly around the middle of my head have grown back. And the new growth is thick and soft.

I would personally recommend Edge Naturale Follicle Enhancer to anyone who needs help with hair growth, especially around their edges. It’s an amazing follicle stimulant cream that delivers results. 

Do you like what you see? Then try out this edge reviving formula: https://edgenaturale.com/products/follicle-enhancer

7 Black-Owned Beauty Brands to Honor This Earth Day

Photo by Marlon Schmeiski on Pexels.com

By: Courtney Henry

From a global pandemic to wildfires, to running through all the names in last year’s hurricane season, our little blueberry in the solar system called Earth could definitely use some TLC these days.

To honor Earth Day 2021 we want you to incorporate sustainability in all parts of your life. Including the skin, hair, and beauty parts. These 7 Black-Owned beauty brands are All Natural and practice ethical sourcing of their clean ingredients so you can feel good about supporting small businesses and rocking your look too. 

Kayla Phillips is the founder of Foxie Cosmetics. A vegan and cruelty-free beauty line that is a little bit rock and roll and all conscious. What she stands for as an artist and activist are very present in her 100% organic bath, body, skin, and hairline that she makes fresh in Nashville, TN. A vegan since she was 14 and a chronic illness warrior, her bestselling bath bombs help you ease your achy muscles, joints, and pains while leaving your skin hydrated and soft.  

Shop Foxie Cosmetics Now

Juvia’s Place boldly goes where no mainstream makeup line has gone before; proudly honoring African roots by offering melanated women and men all the colors of the rainbow. Their entire product line from eyeshadow palettes to foundations in every hue is inspired by the motherland with product names like “The Nubian Royal” and “Deep Dark Kingdom.” All products are 100% cruelty-free and almost all, except one eyeshadow palette, are completely vegan. 

Shop Juvia’s Place Now

Most vegan nail polishes, while good for the earth, often have limited color options that come in …you guessed it…muted earth tones and nudes. Nash + Pino stands out from the crowd by offering an extensive shade list that is made without 10 of the most harmful chemicals. The gold glitter option called “bottle service” is a personal favorite.

Shop Nash + Pino Now

Blade and Bloom is the Chicago-based apothecary you never knew you loved. Their aromatherapy fragrance oil collection is thoughtfully curated to give you the peace or exhilaration needed depending on the moment. Perfectly sized for long-distance or everyday travel, they’re made with all-natural essential oils that are vegan with no chemical fillers or organic ingredients inside. 

Shop blade +bloom Now

Introducing your daily dose of greens…for your face. Made with organic matcha and green tea the ‘Daily Greens Moisturizing Cream’ is chock full of vitamins A, D, and E that melt into your skin and help reduce the appearance of fine lines and dull complexion for a vibrant luminous glow.  With no water used in the formulation, this Oakland-Made hydrating cream is all buttery yum yum for maximum facial moisture. 

Shop The Healing Place Apothecary Now

J’Organic Solutions founder Johanne Joseph loves the kids! Her best-selling healthy hair kit for kids is all-natural and the perfect step-by-step process for mom and baby. The entire line is handmade with NO sulfates, parabens, dyes, or chemicals. Be sure to check out their latest Adult product: ‘The Detanglement Knot Sauce.’ It is a 5 in 1 Moisturizing Cream made with Organic Rice Water and ethically sourced Haitian Castor Oil. It’s all you need for your styling, detangling, curl-defining desires.

Shop J’Organic Solutions Now

The LIMEGREEN brand name serves as a tribute to Founder Talima Davis’ best friend who was diagnosed with liver cancer due to environmental conditions. Creating non-toxic, effective personal care products is something that is near and dear to their mission. Their Multi-Use Skincare is Natural, Vegan, and small batched with love straight out of Brooklyn. 

Shop LIMEGREEN Now

Moroccan Red Clay Benefits

Morroco is a beautiful African country situated in the Northern region. It is known for its vast natural resources and minerals. One popular component of Morocco that has garnered global sales is their red clay, otherwise known as “rhassoul clay”. It has a brownish-red color. It can only be found in the Atlas mountains of Morroco, and it contains numerous healing properties. Research shows that its unique mineral composition can be very beneficial for your hair and skin. 

Rhassoul Clay Benefits For Hair

Photo by Taryn Elliott on Pexels.com

Your skin on your scalp contains sebum secretion. When this secretion is imbalanced, it can cause flakiness and irritation on your scalp. Dead skin cells also need to be properly exfoliated. That is where rhassoul clay can come into action. It can clear out your dead skin cells, which in turn creates space for your natural hair to grow. It also balances out the sebum secretion so dandruff can be fought off. 

Rhassoul clay contains saponin contents. This content is commonly used in shampoos. It can also be singled out as a shampoo alternative. Plant materials also contain this natural cleansing agent. To create your own shampoo, just mix ghassoul clay with rose water until it becomes a paste. Add essential oils such as coconut oil and lavender oil. Continue to mix. Massage it into your wet hair and scalp, and then rinse it off. You will feel surprised as to how clean, soft, and healthy your hair feels. 

Moroccan red clay is more well known for its use as a hair clay mask. It is a natural conditioner that will leave your hair feeling soft and silky. A component of sand that is called silica is in this clay. Silica is an exfoliant, and it can give your hair sheen.

Curly hair can make detangling a challenge. But with minerals such as sulfite and magnesium, rhassoul clay can make your hair more manageable. You deserve natural remedies that are not full of damaging toxins.

Rhassoul Hair Mask Recipe

To make a rhassoul hair mask that is unique to your hair texture, you will need these ingredients:

  1. Rhassoul clay powder
  2. Water
  3. Honey
  4. Rosewater
  5. Essential oils

Steps you should take:

  1. How thick you want your hair mask to be is up to you. On average rhassoul clay needs 2 tbsp. of warm water for every 1 tbsp.of clay powder. For 1 clay mask, you will need about 1 to 2 tablespoons of clay.
  2. Mix the warm water in. Make sure to get any lumps out so that it develops into a paste. Using a wooden spoon and bowl is best.
  3. Divide your hair into sections. Apply the mask generously starting at the roots of your hair and working your way to the ends. Wearing gloves is important during this process. The rich texture makes it hard to get off of your skin. Make sure your scalp is well covered as well.
  4. Let the mask permeate your hair. Put a cap on and keep the mask for 20 to 40 minutes. If you have some clay mask over, you can transform it into a face mask.
  5. Now it’s time to rinse it out. When rinsing your hair out you should make sure you are in the shower. Its thick texture makes it hard to get out of your clothes. Take your time to wash it all out. Once you are done, you don’t need to shampoo or condition. The clay mask serves as a 2 in 1 shampoo and conditioner.

Rhassoul Clay Benefits For Skin

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

Our skin can easily capture a lot of toxins and waste in the air. We live in a world where chemicals from manufacturing take a toll on our health. Human greed has placed capitalism over our livelihood. So keeping our skin detoxified is up to us.

Clays have detoxifying effects because they contain ions. Clogged pores can cause acne and breakouts. Morrocan red clay brings out the impurities and pollution from the pores in your skin. 

When our skin has excessive oil, it can create pimples and blackheads. Moroccan clay soaks up the extra oil, leaving your skin feeling clean and refreshed.

Eczema and psoriasis have inflammatory effects on your skin. This can negatively impact the appearance of your skin. It gives you a look of discoloration. This might give the impression to others that you don’t wash your skin well when in actuality you might be suffering from a skin disorder. Mix rhassoul clay with some coconut milk and apply it to the affected areas. Leave it on to dry, and then wash it off to get some soothing relief.

Loose pores contribute to loose skin. This can cause premature wrinkling. Moroccan clay has natural astringent properties that can tighten your pores leaving your skin healthier and vibrant. 

Rhassoul Skin Mask Recipe

A rhassoul skin mask is similar to a hair mask. The main difference is that less red clay is needed. It is simple to make and you can add your personal favorite essential oils to make it unique.

Ingredients:

  • One tablespoon of Rhassoul clay powder
  • Two tablespoons of warm water
  • Few drops of a esssential oil

Steps to take:

  1. You need 2 tbsp. of warm water for every 1 tbsp. of clay powder. Only one tablespoon of clay powder is needed for one face mask.
  2. Mix the warm water and clay thoroughly with a wooden spoon. Add in your favorite essential oils. Only a few drops will suffice.
  3. Apply the mask with your fingers and allow it to dry. It should stay on your face for about 10 minutes.
  4. Rinse it off well with warm water. 

Morrocan red clay contains aluminum and magnesium, so you should avoid using it if you have allergies to these minerals. You can purchase Moroccan red clay from most beauty and health food stores.

Rhassoul in Arabic means “to wash.” Their clay has been used by so many different cultures for thousands of years. If you are on this natural hair journey with limited funds, using this clay is a great way to go. It purifies, detoxifies, conditions, and smooths your hair and skin. You deserve to feel beautiful without overspending.

Any questions, comments, or concerns? Sound off below!

Sources:

https://www.healthline.com/health/rhassoul-clay-2#summary

https://www.lagzira.com/blogs/lagzira-london-blog/10-benefits-of-moroccan-clay-powder-ghassoul-for-skin-and-hair

Featurism: A Growing Epidemic

Featured Image Credit: Raviyah Singh

Every time I scroll down my social media feed, I notice a pattern of which type of advertisements are shown to me. I usually search for other freelance writers of color so I can learn and grow from them. I guess Facebook and Instagram examines my data input. Their ads cater to my likes and dislikes. Chocolate models often pop up marketing various hair/beauty products. And although I love me some chocolate, I am often disappointed to see that the variety displayed lacks Afrocentric features.

ethniccolors
Image Credit: Raviyahsingh.weebly.com

What Is Featurism?

Featurism is “a prejudice towards individuals with certain features and a preference towards those with features that correlate with a set beauty standard.” Although colorism and featurism are closely linked, they need to be put in separate categories. If you watch fashion runways, you will quickly notice that although dark-skinned models are featured, the ones that are used more possess European features.

blackvs.white
Image Credit: Youtube

African models that are not biracial usually have bigger noses, and bigger lips. Those who have tighter coils, larger noses, and larger hips, are most likely to be excluded from mainstream fashion projects.

Self-hatred within the Black/African community is very real. And at times it can start with our facial features.

Back in the day when exclusive commercials in the United States where geared towards people of color, they would exaggerate our features. This has led to many older brands being pulled off the shelf. For example, Aunt Jemima’s pancake syrup. Quaker decided to remove the image and title after being flooded with customer’s complaints of its racist past.

auntjemima
Image Credit: Lovebscott.com

And featurism does not just end with black people. In Asia, going under the knife to have a double-eyelid surgery is popular. Many Asians do this so they can appear to have bigger eyes. Larger eyes conform more to Eurocentric features.

asian woman with tattoos
Photo by Ike louie Natividad on Pexels.com

Why Is Featurism So Problematic?

When you receive a lot of praise and likes online, but not in real life, you start to wonder: Is my version of black really beautiful?

It is estimated that 40 percent of black businesses will have no choice but to shut down during this coronavirus pandemic. As a black freelance blogger, this means that this pandemic will either make me or break me. A beauty blogger’s salary can range anywhere from $100 a month to $100,000 a month. But when I see Facebook or Instagram ads of the successful bloggers who claim to be millionaires, they are 9 times out of 10 women of European descent. Are talented Africans who look more African worth less?

whitebloggers

We need to promote self-love even in a world of hate. While others might find this time as an opportunity to riot, steal, and kill, we need to reinforce confidence in our black Queens. That means stop showing favoritism. Don’t tell your daughter that she is more prettier than your other daughter because her nose is more thinner and her curls are looser. And don’t tell your girlfriend that you broke up with her because her butt was not big enough. Stop with the hate. Promote love.

Personally, I find beauty in all shades and all races. Microaggressions coincide with racism. When you hate your own kind, your own kind, in the long run, gets paid less. So the next time you see someone who looks nothing like what you normally see on the T.V, complement them. We can all stop this self-hatred once we see that all-natural, unalterable features are made to be treated equal.

africanmodels
Image Credit: Pinterest

Sources: http://www.therotundaonline.com/opinion/we-need-to-recognize-featurism-and-its-effects/article_1c841d3c-4313-11ea-a12f-fb4b83810632.html

https://deardarkskinnedgirl.com/2020/05/04/what-is-featurism/

Colorism Is Not the Only Thing That's Problematic, So Is Featurism…

Support Liberian Face Masks

Since the coronavirus has hit Africa, there have been 47,131 cases, 1,845 deaths, and 15,796 recoveries. Liberia, a small west African country, has had its fair share of casualties. So far they have 166 confirmed cases and 18 deaths as of today, May 5, 2020. These statistics are based upon the cases that are reported. So many underserved communities in Liberia lack healthcare centers that can properly test residents.

liberianfacemask
Image Credit: dw.com

Before the coronavirus pandemic, the Ebola epidemic claimed the lives of 4,810 Liberians. Thomas Nagbe is the director of infectious diseases and epidemiology department at Liberia’s public health institute. He admits that “not all counties are adequately prepared because of inadequate resources”. He also told Aljazeera News that only 1 ventilator exists in the country. Just one. A severe symptom of this virus is shortness of breath. More ventilators are needed for people to survive.

For lives to be saved, prevention is key. So many are setting up their sewing machines and creating face masks. The face masks are not only fashionable, they are saving lives.

The Bombchel Factory

An issue that remains within the fashion industry is staying above water. Many creatives, including those who sew, have to consistently market themselves to make a profit. It is a never-ending hustle. At the Bombchel factory, women are being trained to create clothes. With the pandemic growing, face masks are being made at a fast pace. Located in the heart of Monrovia, Bombchel is working hard to create face masks for their local community and the world. They teach women how to sew, and they also hold literacy classes. Skirts that are not being sold are being transformed into bright-faced masks. Their employee team is comprised of female Ebola survivors, rape survivors, and the deaf. They are a team of survivors that are doing all they can to save lives during this pandemic. The beautiful face masks are being made out of bold African prints.

shopbombchel
Image credit: Bombchel Factory

Since April 24, 2020, the Liberian government has mandated that everyone seen outside must wear a face mask. Cloth face masks must be washed regularly. Also, social distancing must be practiced. Wash your hands as much as possible. Keep a hand sanitizer by your side. And use disinfectant wipes on every surface that you can.

Support Liberians by buying face masks from the Bombchel factory. For every face mask purchased, one will be donated to someone who cannot quarantine at home.

bombchelfactory
Image Credit: Bombchel Factory

To learn more, visit: https://www.shopbombchel.com/collections/all/products/cloth-masks

Sources:

https://www.africanews.com/2020/03/26/coronavirus-young-liberians-make-african-print-masks-for-protection-no-comment/

https://allafrica.com/stories/202004290448.html

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2020/04/liberia-braces-coronavirus-defunct-health-system-200403134851258.html

https://www.dw.com/en/turning-face-masks-into-a-fashion-statement-in-africa/g-53291542