FEATURES

I think I met Louisa at the perfect time.  Just a few months before I leave for London, England. I am looking forward to suggestions of stores so I can update and upgrade my closet! We crossed paths on Twitter a few days ago and exchanged pleasantries.  I checked out her blog and saw that we both have something in common; we are newly naturals! *yyyyay!*

Louisa is the creator of AfroBlush.  Her vision it was to create space devoted to and in celebration of African diaspora, fashion, hair, beauty, culture, art, design and music and things that excite her. Be sure to add Afroblush to your blogroll.  

NAME:  Louisa

LOCATION:  London, England

DESCRIPTION OF YOUR HAIR: Well I recently cut my hair, it was relaxed shoulder length, and brown; often in an instant weave. Now it is short (about an inch) natural and red well sort of a maroon colour

PRODUCTS YOU USE ON YOUR NATURAL HAIR: My most preferable products are from Organics Root Stimulator. I am a big fan of virgin olive oil ; cooking with it as well as for skin and hair, most of their products are olive oil based. Otherwise, I like Elvive shampoos and sometimes mix some olive oil in a spray bottle with some hair mayonnaise. I find its quite light and doesn't have the heavy greasy texture that can make your hair dirty and your forehead shinny LoL. 
DO YOU WEAR EXTENSIONS: When I had longer hair I was a big fan of instant weaves, I like that I could take it off and hang it up whilst I wrap my own hair or leave it out for some air. With full on weaves, your hair does not get a chance to come out and breath. I prefer synthetic to human hair simply because it is low maintenance and human hair had a way of getting tangled and out of shape quicker. 

HOW OFTEN DO YOU GET YOUR HAIR DONE? With my current short hair I give it a mini treatment every 2 or 3 days, I can afford to do it more often because its a lot less hair to manage. With longer hair, it was every week and a half to two weeks. 

PRODUCTS YOU USE ON YOUR HAIR EXTENSIONS:  None really, no heavy hair moisterisers, just a home made spritz bottle with olive oil, water and hair mayonnaise to give it some hydration and shine. 

Louisa speaks! THE IMPORTANCE OF PROPERLY GROOMED HAIR FOR WOMEN: I cannot stress the importance! hair is a big part of being a woman and feeling feminine. I love all the glamourous weaves and hair peices, but I also believe in neatness and keeping on top of your maintenance routine. I would rather see someone with a short simple hair cut, or a tied back pony tail, than to see someone with a long Brazillian weave that looks dirty and uncared for.
EXTRA! EXTRA! This is a link to a very important page of mine on my blog and I remind myself of these rules on a daily basis, 10 Rules for Natural Hair Care. Here is another link about my big chop and how and why it came about, Fortune favors the bald.
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Adiya in my opinion is a shear genius! She is the lovely lady behind the The Corner Shop blog. The Corner Shop showcases Nigerian Small and Medium-scale Enterprises (SMEs) that exhibit creativity. She belives SMEs are the bloodline of any economy and has narrowed this excellent vision to Nigerians who are creative, hardworking, and persistent, and they totally deserve to have their businesses survive them.

NAME:  Adiya

LOCATION:  Abuja, Nigeria

DESCRIPTION OF YOUR HAIR: My hair is texturized. I can't even remember when I first retouched (permed) it seems like forever. It barely reaches my shoulders and it's black with no streaks at all.

PRODUCTS YOU USE ON YOUR NATURAL HAIR: I'm not loyal to beauty and hair product brands actually but the milder the better. I keep telling myself to research components but I never get around to it. I use products with coconut or aloe vera. Lately, I prefer herbal relaxers.

DO YOUR WEAR HAIR ENTESIONS?  I usually wear extensions. There was a time where I wouldn't do anything shorter than 12". I am yet to try a 'Rihanna' bob. I braid with extensions most of the time. I like it because I can just roll out of bed and not worry about styling my hair (yeah, I'm lazy like that LOL!). I usually use Expressions or Sensationnel Premium 2 hair extensions and weaves. When I've got extensions on, I rarely use products unless the hair starts 'crying out' I'll oil my scalp.

HOW OFTEN DO YOU GET YOUR HAIR DONE? I don't go to the salon very often to get my hair. If I'm rockin' my natural hair, I wash and blow dry it out.  I don't like going under the hair dryer. Only a gun to my head would get me under there. I usually keep my braids for about 7-8 weeks (and never less than a month).  Talk about protective style! When I take my extensions out, I wear my natural hair for about a month before trying something new.

Adiya Speaks! THE IMPORTANCE OF PROPERLY GROOMER HAIR FOR WOMEN:  I think properly groomed hair is important because hair can change your whole look. It is an expression of your personality (classy, trendy, crazy, colorful, loud, understated etc.) It can make you look completely different.  Healthy hair is easy to spot out, it just looks fantastic no matter what you're doing with it.

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Meet Precious!  A natural hair blogger who is enjoying every bit of her kinks! She's currently documenting her hair journey and sharing helpful tips on her blog Precious Curls.  
NAME:  Precious

LOCATION:  Boston, USA

HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN NATURAL?  I've been natural for about a year and a half now.  I removed my relaxed ends in September 2009.

WHY DID YOU TRANSITION?  I transitioned for many reasons. The first reason was because I was sick of the damage that relaxers were doing to my hair. I saw breakage everywhere - on my pillow, on my clothes, on my shoulders - everywhere. The second reason was because I was interested and mesmerized by the texture of natural hair. I definitely hated my natural hair when I was little, but as I got older, I became interested in it. I wondered how my hair would look natural again. I loved the look of a nice, thick, pony puff so I began my research on natural hair.  

INSPIRATION:  The first site I came across was Miss Teri Laflesh's site, Tightly Curly. Teri tells her story on how she transformed short, damaged permed hair into lovely, healthy, beautiful curls. I was sure that I too could transform my damaged permed hair into lovely natural hair. It was then that I decided to begin my transition.
BEFORE
DESCRIPTION OF YOUR HAIR:  My hair is 100% na-tu-ralle! My curl pattern ranges from finger-sized curls to teeny tiny little coils, and my hair is very thick and dense.

PRODUCTS YOU USE ON YOUR HAIR:  Right now, I'm in love with my shea butter mix. I moisturize with either plain old water or Califia Moisturizing Spray from Komaza Care and apply my shea butter mix on top. My hair remains so soft and moist for the whole day! I've recently fallen in love with black soap.  I am shampooing my hair with Original Black Soap Organic Shampoo from Eli's Body Shop. Check out my review here. I condition my hair weekly with Komaza Care's Califia Care Conditioner (this conditioner has been discontinued, I will soon be using their newest Moja Conditioner) As a light moisturizer before bed I recently began using the Eli's Body Shop's Shea Moisturizer.

Precious Speaks! THE IMPORTANCE OF PROPERLY GROOMED HAIR FOR WOMEN:  From my own personal experience and observation, I find that properly groomed hair - hair that is clearly being taken good care of - will exude its own natural beauty and this makes a very good impression on people. When people look at you and your hair positively, it makes you feel good inside! It is also important and can be a source of a woman's (or even a man's) self-esteem and pride. 
AFTER
I just absolutely love the texture of my hair! Thanks to proper and gentle maintenance, its beauty has truly shown. I can't imagine ever going back to the 'creamy crack' - this mass of curls and coils that God has given me is just too precious to oppress with those harsh chemicals.  My hair has completely reaped the benefits of being chemical and heat free.  I have found freedom in becoming natural! Always remember that it is easier to embrace and love your natural texture than to fight against it. Our hair is our ornament, we should appreciate what God has given us.

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I came across Dorcas' blog and loved it.  I was drawn to the neat, simple layout and her posts were short and sweet.  I also noticed her hair and unique sense of style and didn't think twice about contacting her.

NAME: Dorcas Ola

LOCATION:   Toronto, Canada

YOUR HAIR REGIMEN:  The main part of my hair regimen is avoiding using direct heat. I stay away from blow dryers, flat irons & curling irons. I opt for braid outs & bantu knot outs to achieve heat free texture. I wash weekly & include a deep conditioner as well as a hot oil treatment with a natural oil. Daily, I moisturize my hair with a hair moisturizer and seal in the moisture with a light natural oil like Extra Virgin Coconut Oil

DESCRIPTION OF YOUR NATURAL HAIR:  My hair in its natural state is a 4B curl pattern & extremely thick! I've been relaxed for about 9 years now & my hair is about bra strap length.
4b curl pattern
PRODUCTS YOU USE:  I avoid products with alcohol, petroleum & sulfates. I would say my go-to products are water based hair moisturizers (ex:  Curl Assurance Leave-in Conditioner) and natural oils (Jamaican Black Castor Oil, Extra Virgin Coconut Oil & Extra Virgin Olive Oil). When I do relax I use Mizani relaxer.
EXTENSIONS? IF SO, WHAT LENGTHS:  I've never had a weave or braids. But last summer I did get some clip in extensions. They're usually put in to the back to add some length. They're 16inches & not sure of the brand name. I don't use them very often. But I have been wanting to rock the 90s braids look √† la Moesha.  Products you use in your hair extensions, if anyJust heat protectant if they get curled to keep them looking decent.

HOW OFTEN DO YOU GET YOUR HAIR DONE:  I wash & deep condition my hair weekly. I visit the hair dresser about every 3-4 months for a relaxer. But that is the extent of it. All other hair care I handle on my own.

Dorcas Speaks! THE IMPORTANCE OF PROPER GROOMED HAIR FOR WOMEN:  Hair is important for women because it can add instant glam. Its the final touch to complete a look. A great hairstyle can make or break a look.  The most important part of hair, at least for me is HEALTHY hair. No matter how you style damaged hair it won't look as fab as healthy hair.

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Crown Chronicles is pleased to feature Dynamix TV personality of the year 2010 and Producer for Silver Bird TV Nigeria, Yvonne Ekwere also known to many as Vixen. This style connoisseur, writer, entertainer, jeweller and ceo I-BLING accessories and Tees reveals her hair regimen.

NAME: Yvonne Ekwere

LOCATION:  Lagos, Nigeria

HAIR REGIMEN: I wash my hair at least once a week if I don't have hair extensions on. I re-touch with kiddie relaxer every 2 months. I steam once every month. I trim the roots every time I wash and when it comes to drying my hair, I NEVER go under the hair dryer, I hate it! I'd rather use a hand dryer and curling iron! LoL

WHAT LIES BENEATH? Describe under hair underneath the extensions:  Underneath my hair extension is texturized hair; styled into a Monica -type hair cut.

WHAT PRODUCTS DO YOU USE ON YOUR NATURAL HAIR:  I don't use too many products on my hair but I'm a fan of the Beautiful Beginnings hair relaxer as it gives my hair a soft and fine texture.  Organics Hair Mayonnaise is also a fave of mine.  Any hair cream/wax that's got coconut oil, shea butter or marijuana (yup! I said it) in it works for me!  Products I use vary depending on my hair style or directions my hair stylist gives

LENGTH OF YOUR EXTENSIONS:  Extensions are very important to me because of the glam nature of my job so to keep me noticeable I do different styles with different extensions and their length and colours but I'm a big fan of extensions between 16" - 34" inches!

HOW OFTEN DO YOU GET YOUR HAIR DONE?  Oooh! I get my hair done very often! I think the longest I've had a hairstyle on was a month and I had long early 90's inspired braids on

Yvonne Speaks! - WHAT IS YOUR VIEW ON THE IMPORTANCE OF PROPERLY GROOMED HAIR FOR WOMEN:  It is very important to keep ones hair groomed because as we all a women hair is her crowning glory and tells a lot about her personality. Without the perfect hair texture and style, the "perfect look" can't be achieved! So find a great hair stylist and listen and obey to instructions given! :-)


Thanks for sharing Yvonne!

Unlike most people who do the "big chop" and go natural, Chantal's hair was healthy, thick, average length and absolutely gorgeous before she loc'd up from hair.

Natural twists
NAME: Chantal

LOCATION:  Toronto, Canada

GLORY STORY - HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN NATURAL? 14 months

WHY YOU TRANSITIONED: I always wanted to go natural but was afraid that I would be unable to maintain it. I kept seeing more and more women with natural hair, especially locs and started researching it in late 2009. I felt a strong conviction to return to my roots and wear my hair as God had intended me to...natural. I finally took the plunge on February 2010 and loc’d my hair. It was the best decision I ever made.

HAIR PRODUCTS YOU USE: I use the Organic Root Simulator brand which is great for my locs. I use the Lock & Twist gel to twist my roots, the Shea Butter Moisturizing lotion to keep my locs soft, the Anti-Itch Scalp Oil to control itchiness, and Creamy Aloe Shampoo to wash and keep my locs fresh and clean.

BEFORE
I was a perm queen. Was straightening my hair since I was 9!
 
AFTER
 

 

NAME:: Miss Simon

LOCATION:   TorontoCanada

GLORY STORY: I've been wearing weaves consistently since I was 17.  The first time I got a weave, I was 14. I didn't know how to maintain it so I didnt do it again until I was 17

BREAK FROM THE WEAVE:  The last time I rocked my real hair was summer of 2009. I wanted to try something new and my hair was badly damaged so I got a hair cut. I had a Rihanna/Keri Hilson inspired hair do. Since then I've been wearing weaves only, mainly for convenience.


PRODUCTS YOU USE:  I don't really have a stable brand of products I use. I like to test new things.  I like to use Onyx/Black Diamond brand of weave. For the price range, the quality is surprisingly consistent and last longer than your average yaki weave


Meet Ms. Lee, the ever so fabulous hair stylist, fashion consultant & makeup artist 

NAME:  Shenae Lee

LOCATION:  Toronto, Canada

HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A STYLIST?  I’ve been a stylist for about 13 years

SPECIALTY: I specialize in weaves, including full heads and invisible parts. I also do ponytails, buns, braids, wigs, individual lashes, makeup; I’ll even re-do your wardrobe for the right price! LOL! Anything creative — I’m all over it.


WHAT DO YOU LIKE MOST ABOUT BEING A STYLIST? The ability to give people what they want. I like looking at a client, envisioning how they would look with a more flattering hairstyle, and then being able to create that look for them. It’s so rewarding at the end when girls send me a picture from the event they went to and they’re so thankful to me for helping them create their look. I kinda feel like a fairy godmother at times

HOW OFTEN DO YOU CHANGE YOUR HAIRSTYLES? It really does depend on a lot of things; my mood, the outfit I plan on wearing, how many times I plan to be at a party that month, whether I have a hot date with my boo ;-)

INSPIRATION:  A lot of my inspiration for my hair styles and just style overall comes from celebrities. On a regular basis I get comments from people telling me I resemble numerous gorgeous celebrities…so why not?? *side eye*

Look-alike? What do you think?

DIFFERENT LOOKS:  It’s not unusual for me to have a 22 inch white blonde weave like Lady Gaga one day. A 10 inch asymmetrical jet-black bob like my girl Nicki Minaj the next. 12 inches of Kool-Aid red tresses like my lil sis Rihanna or 18 inches of loose curls and layers like the beautiful Kim Kardashian a week later. So to answer that question, I’d just say probably a lot more often than I should or need to. . .


Want Shenae to hook you up? Send an email to crownchronicles[@]gmail.com
NAME: Ehi

LOCATION:  Toronto, Canada

GLORY STORY:  My story unlike most other natural sisters was not one borne out of compulsion or bad hair days. My epiphany happened during a time when I needed a new direction for my life and my life in its entirety needed an overhaul (body, soul, spirit).  When I went natural with my hair, so did my whole being and this was borne out of a need to embrace my whole self and live my life to its fullness.  It came with trashing artificial, eating more organic and plant based meals.  Living a more conscious life and just been in charge of my life.  Going Natural was a product of searching for my true authentic self and I’m a big believer that wearing one’s hair naturally has very little to do with the actual hair and speaks of a deeper sense of one’s self.  

HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN NATURAL?: 2 years  

Natural puff
MY JOURNEY:  Since I've been natural, I carry myself differently.  I think differently.  I have a renewed sense of confidence and esteem. I don’t feel as though I’m hiding under a mask of what I’m not. It’s the best aesthetic decision I ever made and I've never looked back!

MAINTENANCE:  Natural hair is so phenomenal; it doesn't ask for much, just keep it moisturized and your kinks will be pleased.

PRODUCTS I USE:  All natural Shea Butter to moisturize.  Any oil based shampoo should be used once a week.  Condition 3 times a week.

Twists
BOURGY BABE SUGGESTS:  If you’re thinking about going natural, just do it!  After all, your permed hair is always covered in weave anyways. It excites me that more ladies are finally catching on.  Going natural is not a trend, its here to stay!
December 23, 1867 – May 25, 1919
NAME:  Sarah Breedlove 
FIELD:  Businesswoman, hair care, entrepreneur and philanthropist
GLORY STORY:  Inspired by Annie Malone whom she worked for at the time, an African American businesswoman that manufactured and sold hair care products.  Madam C. J was suffering from hair loss and decided to develop products to cure her problem called Wonderful Hair Grower and later started the Walker System.  She opened a beauty salon and school as a facility to train agents, graduates received certificates and were called hair culturists.  Sarah later built a factory to produce large quantities of her products. She created jobs for over 3, 000 African-American men and women. C. J Walker expanded her business in the Caribbean and Central America. By 1917 she had trained 20, 000 agents.  

There is no royal flower-strewn path to success. And if there is, I have not found it for if I have accomplished anything in life it is because I have been willing to work hard 
Madam C. J Walker