Friday, January 22, 2010

New Year, New You

10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1...HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

With the ushering in of 2010 we not only get a fresh start to a new year, but a new decade as well. This opens the door of opportunity for a new attitude, thought process, view on life, etc. To get there requires us to leave behind all that held us back in 2009.

So many times we get bogged down by what should have or could have been. Oftentimes we're so fixated on our shortcomings that we can't see our triumphs. This should be a time for self reflection and re-direction. If things didn't work out in 2009, fix them in 2010. If you had a negative attitude in 2009, strive to be more positive in 2010. If life was full of doom and gloom, focus on those things that are full of hope. Believe that this year will be different and put the actions needed to make it so in play. It's not about a resolution...but a life change. Keep in mind our thoughts dictate our actions and our actions dictate our lives.

Like the changing of the seasons, a new year allows you to metamorphose into something more beautiful and spectacular than before. Remember it's a brand new day and new beginning for you. Take advantage of this chance to grow a better you!

Friday, January 8, 2010

What's Up With Your Hair

Braids, dreads, weaves, wigs, extensions, ponytails, twists, naturals, afros, press & curls, relaxers, doobies, jheri curls and finger waves...some chic and not so chic hairstyles black women have worn to express and define their style throughout the years.

The Science:

The kinky texture of our hair served as protection from extremely hot temperatures in Africa. Basically the texture and thickness of our hair is what kept the sun's UV rays, from scorching our heads and prevented overheating of the body and brain. Based on this discovery I immediately thought natural is probably better. However, natural isn't always convenient or manageable.

Usher in relaxers...

In the early 19th century a man by the name of Garrett Augustus Morgan discovered that it was possible to change the structure of the hair shaft; via the chemical sodium hydroxide. During the relaxing process the cream based chemical is applied to the hair at the root. After being left on for several minutes the hair begins to straighten. For those of us with unruly thick hair this is a Godsend, however it also causes irreparable damage to your hair. Additionally, it may cause damage to the scalp and hair loss if left on too long.

Myth 1: We wear fake hair to look like other races

In all honesty weave and wigs aren't worn because we're trying to be someone other than ourselves. Weave and wigs are worn out of convenience or the need for change. Oftentimes they're worn to take the daily stress off of our own hair. Furthermore, they offer versatility without having to alter your own mane. For instance if you want to test out a new haircut it's much better to do with a weave or wig.

Myth 2: Our hair doesn't grow long

Sometimes people see a black woman with long hair and immediately think weave...not so! The growth rate of hair is on a case by case basis. There are those black women whose hair grows like weeds and others that don't. A lot of what we put in our hair contributes to its overall health and ultimately its growth. If your hair is healthy and well taken care of it will grow.

Hair clearly serves a physiological purpose but is often seen more as an accessory of sorts. Understanding how black hair works is the best west way to appreciate its uniqueness. With that being said there's also the need to recognize that what works for some may not work for others.