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How Your Products Can Make or Break Your Braided Styles This Summer

Braided styles are a summer favorite, offering a perfect mix of style and practicality. Whether you’re rocking box braids, cornrows, or locs, the right products can make all the difference. Maintaining braids goes beyond aesthetics—it’s about preserving the health of your hair and scalp. The products you choose can significantly impact the longevity and look of your braids. 

This guide will explain how different products can impact your braided styles, helping you make informed choices for a fabulous and hassle-free summer braid experience. Let’s dive into the best practices for maintaining beautiful braids while keeping your hair and scalp in top condition.

Locs

How Your Products Can Make or Break Your Braided Styles This Summer
Image Source: @thechicnatural / Instagram

Locs are a long-lasting protective style often considered permanent. Initially, they require high maintenance, including regular retwisting, moisturizing, and diligent care. Successful loc care hinges on patience, proper moisturization, and consistent upkeep.

Products to Use

How Your Products Can Make or Break Your Braided Styles This Summer
  • Hydrating Mist: Locs can easily become dry, so using a hydrating mist daily will keep them moisturized. Look for mists containing natural ingredients like aloe vera and rose water, which hydrate without causing buildup. The Locsanity Daily Moisturizing Refreshing Spray for Locs is a great option, as it provides essential moisture and refreshes your locs with natural ingredients.
  • Light Oils (e.g., jojoba, argan): The health of your locs starts with your scalp. Your locs are unlikely to thrive if your scalp isn’t in good condition. Moisturization involves adding and retaining water molecules in the hair and scalp. Natural oils and butter help preserve this moisture by minimizing water evaporation from the hair shaft and scalp. Regularly massage oil into the scalp will help soothe it and prevent significant moisture loss. Apply sparingly to avoid buildup, focusing on the scalp.
  • Residue-Free Shampoo:  Keeping your locs and scalp clean without leaving behind residue is important. Shampoos not specifically formulated for locs can leave buildup, leading to mildew and other issues. Opt for a gentle, residue-free shampoo with soothing ingredients like argan oil or peppermint to maintain scalp health. The Rastta Locs Shampoo Bar is an excellent choice, as it deep cleanses with a pH level that nourishes hair and provides a gentle cleanse to lift product debris without stripping locs. To avoid trapping the product, lather the shampoo bar in your hands and apply the lather to your hair rather than rubbing the bar directly on your locs.

Products to Avoid

  • Wax (including beeswax): Wax is detrimental to locs because it is very hard to wash away, especially from within the locs. Over time, the wax builds up, making the locs unnaturally heavy, leading to breakage and thinning as the hair grows longer. Wax also prevents moisture from penetrating the hair shaft, causing dryness.
  • Heavy Creams and Butter: These products are often too heavy and thick, leading to buildup and making locs feel greasy and weighed down. They can also slow down the loc’ing process.
  • Gel with Alcohol: Gels containing alcohol can dry out the hair and scalp, causing flaking and potential breakage. They also make the hair unnaturally stiff, leading to breakage over time.

Box Braids

How Your Products Can Make or Break Your Braided Styles This Summer
Image Source: @salemmitchell / Instagram

Box braids are one of the most popular protective styles for natural hair. They eliminate the need for daily combing or styling and protect hair from extreme weather conditions. However, improper maintenance can lead to dryness, excessive shedding, and hair breakage. Caring for your box braids correctly is essential to keeping hair healthy and strong.

Products to Use

How Your Products Can Make or Break Your Braided Styles This Summer
  • Braiding Mousse/Foam: An alcohol-free mousse or foam is ideal because it’s lightweight, keeps hair in place, and extends the life of your protective style. You’ll also want to opt for a water-based formula to reduce buildup, like Aunt Jackie’s Ready, Set, Hold! Braid Setting Foam
  • Scalp Spray:  When fighting the flakes, use a good scalp spray like Design Essentials Scalp & Skin Care Detoxifying Tonic with Eucalyptus & Lemon. Infused with eucalyptus and lemon, this tonic reduces the effects of fungus and dandruff and cleanses to remove dirt particles without needing water or shampoo. The natural purification from eucalyptus and lemon soothes and stimulates, creating a healthy environment for healthy hair growth.
  • Light Hair Oil: To keep your braids shiny without weighing them down, use a light oil like almond or grapeseed oil a few times weekly. These oils are excellent for adding shine and preventing dryness throughout the duration of your style.

Products to Avoid

  • Heavy Thick Conditioners: While conditioning is essential, it can cause buildup at the roots and along the braids, leaving them cloggy and more prone to attracting dust and dirt.
  • Sticky Styling Products: Sticky Products, like grease and petroleum jelly, can attract dirt, making your hair look dirty quickly. 
  • Avoid Heavy Oils: Heavy oils can clog hair follicles, causing damage and counteracting their intended benefits.

Cornrows

Reel Source: @braidedbynicks  / Instagram

Cornrows are a fantastic, low-maintenance protective style that guards against moisture loss and breakage, making them ideal for any hair texture. Whether you opt for simple straight-back cornrows, intricate patterns, or styles like cornrow lemonade braids and beaded looks, proper care is essential for maintaining their longevity and health benefits. While cornrows protect against daily stressors, they can have drawbacks if not cared for properly. 

Products to Use

How Your Products Can Make or Break Your Braided Styles This Summer
  • Satin bonnet: As the weeks pass, your cornrows will naturally loosen due to regrowth. However, this doesn’t mean you must give up the hairstyle. The best way to maintain cornrows is by minimizing unnecessary friction, especially while you sleep. Friction occurs when your hair rubs against your pillow, causing your braids to fray and loosen faster. To prevent this, wear a silk scarf or a satin sleep cap, like the Donna Black Satin Sleep Cap, to protect your cornrows and keep them looking neat for longer.
  • Edge Control: A good edge control gel is essential for achieving a polished look with cornrows. It helps blend braiding hair with natural hair, part hair neatly, and smooth edges. One common issue with edge control gels is flaking, which can ruin the appearance of the style. However, The Doux Swag Goo Gel stands out as it doesn’t flake and avoids becoming so hard that it damages or dries out hair. 
  • Cleansers: To extend the life of a protective style, it’s important to keep your hair hydrated to prevent dryness. Regular washes are essential for maintaining a clean scalp and moisturized hair. Start with a clarifying shampoo like Design Essentials Almond & Avocado Clarifying Shampoo. Unlike some creamy shampoos that can leave a residue if not rinsed properly, this shampoo has a clear, thinner consistency and a clarifying formula that effectively breaks down scalp buildup.

Products to Avoid

  • Heavy Creams: These can lead to buildup, making your cornrows look greasy and feel heavy. Opt for lightweight creams that absorb quickly into the hair and scalp.
  • Non-Moisturizing Gels: Gels that lack moisturizing properties can cause flaking and dryness. Always choose gels that provide hydration to avoid these issues.

Conclusion

Maintaining braided styles like box braids, cornrows, and locs requires the right products to keep your hair healthy and your style long-lasting. Each braid type has unique needs, and using suitable products can prevent issues like dryness, buildup, and breakage.

By choosing the right products and tailoring your hair care routine, you can enjoy beautiful, healthy braids all summer. Keep your hair hydrated, clean, and protected, and your braids will look great while maintaining the overall health of your hair and scalp.

30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop

The bob haircut is a timeless trend experiencing a fresh revival, adapting beautifully across all hair textures. This season, we’re seeing the classic bob transform with exciting and innovative styles like the playful micro bob, the clean-cut blunt bob, and the retro-chic French bob. Each version offers something unique, bringing new life to this iconic cut by enhancing the natural beauty of coily, curly, wavy, straight hair.

The micro bob is daringly short, ending well above the jawline, perfect for those looking to make a bold and chic statement. The blunt bob features clean, sharp lines that create a sleek, uniform look, ideal for showcasing the precision of straight hair. Meanwhile, the French bob, often paired with a fringe, exudes whimsical vintage charm, typically cut at cheekbone length to evoke a laid-back yet sophisticated Parisian style.

With its resurgence, the bob is being embraced for its ability to showcase individual personality through precision styling and custom tailoring. The bob accentuates natural volume and textured hair, adding movement and flair that make each strand pop. Straight-haired individuals can enjoy the sleek, polished look of a blunt bob, which frames the face with striking simplicity.

The bob’s enduring popularity lies in its empowering versatility. It can be adapted to any style preference, from understated elegance to bold, statement-making chops. This makes the bob a haircut and a canvas for personal expression. As we explore various bob cuts, it’s clear why this style continues to dominate hair trends—it offers everyone a chance to reinvent their look with flair and sophistication.

1. Tousled Bob

30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
Image Source: Pinterest

This bob haircut features tousled curls with a playful, natural texture, framing the face with a charmingly carefree and youthful look.

2. Side-Parted Bob

30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
Image Source: Pinterest

This bob haircut features soft, luscious spirals gently cascading to one side, creating an elegant, side-parted silhouette.

3. Textured Bob

Reel Source: @charmise / Instagram

This textured bob with blonde highlights combines choppy layers, creating a lively, dimensional, edgy, and chic look.

4. Rounded Curly Bob

30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
Image Source: Pinterest

This bob haircut showcases beautifully defined, loose curls that add volume and a sense of playfulness, perfectly framing the face with a rounded silhouette.

5. Sleek Blunt Bob

30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
Image Source: Pinterest

This blunt bob features a sharp, even cut just below the chin, with sleek, straight strands that create a polished and sophisticated look. The strands accentuate the jawline and frame the face elegantly.

6. Bob with Bangs

30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
Image Source: Pinterest

This bob haircut features sculpted curls paired with playful, wispy bangs, creating a stylish, face-framing look that combines charm with a touch of Parisian flair.

7. Sleek Bob with Side-Swooped Bangs

30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
Image Source: @beyond.fierce / Instagram

This bob haircut elegantly combines straight, silky locks with dramatic side-swooped bangs, offering a polished and sophisticated look.

8. Layered Bob with Wispy Ends

30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
Image Source: @style.me.ageless / Instagram

This bob haircut features abundant layers that create volume and movement, coupled with delicate, wispy ends that soften the overall look.

9. Modern Angled Bob

30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
Image Source: @anarabyanalerida / Instagram

This chic bob features a smooth, sleek texture with a subtle angle, gently tapering from the back to the front. It provides a contemporary and refined look that elegantly frames the face.

10. Lush Textured Curly Bob

30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
Image Source: Pinterest

This bob haircut boasts lush, textured curls that flow freely, creating a beautifully messy and voluminous look that frames the face with a natural, expressive style.

11. Voluminous Curled Bob

    Reel Source: @voiceofhair / Instagram

    This short bob cut features rich, voluminous curls achieved with either pin curls or a large curling iron barrel. It offers a glamorous, textured look that beautifully enhances the hair’s natural highlights and depth.

    12. Modern Tousled Layered Bob

      Reel Source: @kisasackadin / Instagram

      This bob haircut features a short, layered style with a tousled finish that gives it a modern and relaxed look. The subtle, uneven layers add texture and volume, while the light feathering around the face creates a soft, flattering frame.

      13. Retro-Inspired Curly Bob with Side Part

      30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
      Image Source: Pinterest

      With its triangular silhouette, deep side part, and prominent fringe, this bob adds texture and springy coils and frames the face with a dynamic, retro flair.

      14. Classic Hollywood Wave Bob

        Reel Source: @pin_up_curl / Instagram

        This vintage bob features soft curls from rollers, enhanced with a side part and delicate finger waves, creating a timeless, old Hollywood glamour look.

        15. Tapered Coily Bob

        30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
        Image Source: @cultivatedtresses / Instagram

        This tapered bob on coily hair showcases well-defined coils that frame the face with sophistication and texture. 

        16. Chic Blunt Bob with Full Bangs

        30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
        Image Source: @kisasackadin / Instagram

        This sleek, classic blunt bob cut features a straight, even length with full, eyebrow-grazing bangs that frame the face for a contemporary and polished look.

        17. Playful Curly Bob

        30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
        Image Source: Pinterest

        This bob haircut features lively, defined curls that create a playful look. It perfectly frames the face with natural texture and bounce.

        18. Short Angled Wavy Bob

        30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
        Image Source: Pinterest

        This bob haircut features a sharp, angled cut with soft, tousled waves.

        19. Shaggy Curly Bob

        30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
        Image Source: Pinterest

        This shaggy bob haircut features a natural, voluminous shape with well-defined, springy curls that create a textured and playful look, adding depth and movement to the hair.

        20. Sassy Wavy Bob with Highlights

        30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
        Image Source: Pinterest

        This bob haircut features bouncy, voluminous waves enhanced with blonde highlights, creating a vibrant and dynamic look that adds depth and dimension to the hair.

        21. Rounded Voluminous Wavy Bob

        30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
        Image Source: Pinterest

        This voluminous bob showcases tousled waves enhanced with blonde highlights, creating a textured and dynamic look full of depth and movement.

        22. Curly Pixie Bob

        30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
        Image Source: Pinterest

        This short pixie bob haircut features wavy curls, blending the elegance of a bob with the playful charm of a pixie cut.

        23. Edgy Asymmetrical Curly Bob

        30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
        Image Source: @meagangood / Instagram

        This asymmetrical bob haircut on Megan Good features defined, bouncy curls that create a striking, voluminous look. One side is longer than the other for a modern and edgy twist.

        24. Vintage Glam Curly Bob

        30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
        Image Source: @sohpiaroe / Instagram / Photo: @jess_farran

        This vintage-inspired bob features tight, defined curls with a classic silhouette, complemented by short bangs that add a touch of retro glamour and sophistication.

        25. Minimalist Curly Bob

        30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
        Image Source: Pinterest

        This minimalist bob features soft, defined curls that hug the nape of the neck, creating a clean and elegant silhouette with a natural, understated charm.

        26. French Curly Bob

        30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
        Image Source: Pinterest

        This French curly bob features soft, natural curls that fall just above the shoulders. Paired with a wispy fringe, it creates a chic, effortlessly stylish look that embodies Parisian elegance.

        27. Micro Bob

        30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
        Image Source: Pinterest

        This micro bob features textured, wispy layers cut just above the jawline and complemented by soft, face-framing pieces that add a modern, edgy touch.

        28. Edgy Short Choppy Bob

        30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
        Image Source: Pinterest

        This short choppy bob, cut between ear length and just below the chin, features uneven layers that create a textured, edgy look with playful, tousled curls for added volume and movement.

        29. Chic Short Curly Bob

        30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
        Image Source: Pinterest

        This short curly bob features tight curls that create a voluminous, rounded shape. Its softly tapered silhouette beautifully frames the face.

        30. Short-Stacked Bob with Highlights

        30 Bob Cuts to Inspire Your Big Chop
        Image Source: Pinterest

        This short, stacked bob features tight curls with subtle blonde highlights, creating a voluminous and dynamic look. The tapered shape is complemented by longer tendrils at the front, enhancing the natural texture and adding depth and dimension.

        Conclusion

        The bob haircut continues to reign supreme as a versatile and timeless style that adapts beautifully to all hair textures and preferences. From sleek and sophisticated blunt cuts to playful curly variations, a bob suits every personality and look.

        Whether you’re drawn to the edgy charm of a short choppy bob, the elegant silhouette of a tapered coily bob, or the retro glamour of a vintage-inspired bob, these styles offer endless possibilities for personal expression. Embrace the bob haircut’s resurgence this season and find the perfect cut highlighting your unique beauty and flair.

                              Styles 4 Kidz Brings Hair Care With Heart to Blended Families

                              In recognition of Mental Health Awareness Month, Naturally Curly’s “Key Moment” series is spotlighting innovative non-profits like Styles 4 Kidz. Under the visionary leadership of Tamekia, Styles 4 Kidz has become a cornerstone in creating nurturing online environments that support the unique needs of foster, biracial, and transracial adoptive families. 

                              Through education and advocacy, the organization not only addresses the practical aspects of haircare education but also bolsters the mental wellness of these communities. Our recent conversation with Tamekia offers an in-depth look at how Styles 4 Kidz is making significant strides in fostering inclusivity and understanding, shaping a brighter future for families wrestling with the complexities of multiracial identity.

                              The Genesis of Styles 4 Kidz

                              The seeds of Styles 4 Kidz were sown in 2010 when its founder, Tamekia, encountered a pivotal moment while leading a hair braiding class on a mission trip in Poland. “One of my students, who had always dreamed of having beautiful braids, inspired me,” Tamekia recalls. The phrase “Kids and hair” resonated deeply, setting the course for her future endeavors.

                              Upon returning to the United States, fate intervened through Mary, a transracial adoptive mother struggling with her daughters’ hair care needs. Tamekia’s expertise met and exceeded Mary’s expectations, leading to word-of-mouth recommendations highlighting a significant community support gap. This interaction sparked Tamekia’s realization of the broader needs of similar families.

                              “This issue made me realize the growing need for a safe, supportive space where families like Mary’s could learn proper hair care without judgment. I was motivated to focus on haircare education for the foster, biracial, and transracial adoptive community because of the lack of resources and education available to teach parents how to navigate the day-to-day details of caring for their kid’s textured hair and create a place and space where multiracial and adoptive families, as well as kids in foster care, can embrace their natural, ethnic hair with confidence!” Tamekia explains.

                              Driven by this vision, Tamekia dedicated herself to fostering a community where education in hair care is intertwined with empowerment and acceptance, crafting a haven where every family feels supported, and every child can celebrate their natural beauty.

                              Creating a Welcoming and Safe Space

                              Image Source: @styles4kidz

                              At Styles 4 Kidz, the approach to creating a welcoming and safe environment is unique and essential for children and families navigating diverse identities.

                              “We create a safe and welcoming space by remaining neutral in our opinions and judgments of how families navigate the complexities of their kid’s day-to-day care,” Tamekia details.

                              This approach acknowledges that each child’s needs are distinct, and respecting each family’s diverse boundaries and cultures is paramount—especially in a context that diverges from traditional hair care practices in the Black community.

                              The organization educates parents about their children’s specific hair care needs and imbues them with a deeper understanding of the cultural significance behind these practices.

                              “This motivates them to want to keep their children in an environment with people who look like them and where they can connect with their culture,” Tamekia adds.

                              Through this empowerment and education, Styles 4 Kidz nurtures a supportive learning environment beyond hair care, fostering a sense of community and identity among its families.

                              Adapting to Meet Diverse Family Needs

                              A person and person standing next to a child

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                              Photo credit: Styles 4 Kidz

                              The organization has adapted its educational resources to be accessible and relevant to the diverse needs of foster families, biracial families, and transracial adoptive families. Recognizing the shifting dynamics of modern education, the organization made a significant pivot during the COVID-19 pandemic.

                              “COVID inspired us to take all our training and resources and put them online,” Tamekia shares. This transition was not just about moving content to a digital format but tailoring it to address the specific challenges these families face, particularly in understanding and caring for their children’s textured hair.

                              The organization listens closely to families’ feedback, adapting its resources to better suit their needs. “We teach the parents from the perspective of their lenses, colored with a bit of Black culture—online over Zoom across every state,” explains Tamekia. This approach has expanded their reach within the United States and allowed them to connect with families internationally, in countries like Canada, the UK, and South Africa.

                              By enhancing its website with additional resources and tools, Styles 4 Kidz ensures that learning about hair care is accessible to parents everywhere, easing the journey for those new to the nuances of textured hair. This commitment to accessibility and relevance is crucial in empowering parents to care for their children’s hair confidently, fostering a sense of competence and pride across diverse family structures.

                              Tailoring Solutions to Overcome Haircare Challenges

                              Image Source: @styles4kidznfp

                              Building on this foundation of respect and empowerment, Styles 4 Kidz has also tailored its educational resources to meet the specific requirements of its diverse clientele. Understanding that each family’s haircare needs are unique—from recognizing different hair types to selecting the appropriate products and mastering their use—Styles 4 Kidz is committed to providing targeted support.

                              Recognizing that accessibility to specialized haircare education can often be a barrier, Styles 4 Kidz has innovated to bridge this gap. “We launched an online training platform specifically designed to meet parents’ needs—explained simply—in a way that increases their knowledge and confidence in their ability to learn and grow in their ability to manage their kids’ hair,” Tamekia explains.

                              This platform is not just a repository of information but a dynamic educational tool that adapts to the evolving landscape of family needs. It ensures that parents have the support and knowledge to care for their children’s hair with assurance and expertise.

                              Enhancing Well-Being Through Haircare Education

                              Styles 4 Kidz Brings Hair Care With Heart to Blended Families
                              Image Source: @styles4kidznfp

                              The focused educational initiatives at Styles 4 Kidz have a profound effect on the mental health and self-esteem of the children they reach, particularly those in foster care and adoption scenarios. Understanding and managing hair can significantly influence a child’s self-perception and overall mental wellness.

                              “The role proper haircare plays in a child’s mental health and self-esteem is huge!” Tamekia exclaims. She explains the deep connection between appearance and self-esteem: “How we look impacts how we feel, and if we are not confident in our appearance, it affects how we feel about ourselves and how we project who we are into the world.” Tamekia highlights that the ability to choose and maintain hairstyles is not merely a matter of aesthetics but a crucial form of self-expression that can affirm a child’s identity.

                              In the context of foster care and adoption, where children often face numerous challenges and traumas, being denied the opportunity to express themselves through their hair can exacerbate feelings of alienation and distress. “When we are not allowed to choose hairstyles that boost how we feel about ourselves—especially in these contexts—mental health suffers,” Tamekia notes, underscoring the potentially severe consequences, including suicidal thoughts and behaviors aimed at self-harm.

                              By providing education that respects and enhances their ability to make informed choices about hair care, Styles 4 Kidz equips children and their families with the necessary skills and contributes significantly to building their confidence and fostering a healthier self-image.

                              Community Engagement and Transformative Impact

                              Styles 4 Kidz Brings Hair Care With Heart to Blended Families
                              Image Source: @styles4kidznp

                              Styles 4 Kidz’s impact extends beyond individual haircare education. Through transformative stories and robust online engagement, the organization’s educational content resonates deeply within the community. The positive reception of its content online is a testament to the organization’s vital role in the lives of many families.

                              “There is so much support for Styles 4 Kidz from many supporters,” Tamekia acknowledges, noting that the response hasn’t been universally positive. “However, in the Black community, there are some mixed responses about teaching White people about Black hair secrets and some mixed feelings about transracial adoption and foster care altogether. For me, it’s all about the kids. Our Black children are living in communities that are predominantly White and feel isolated and alone.

                              Teaching foster and adoptive parents the proper hair care is one way we can show up for the Black children growing up in communities where they lack racial mirrors and a connection to their own Black culture.”

                              Tamekia also shares a heartwarming account from a transracial adoptive mom, illustrating Rita, the mother of Nia, a twelve-year-old Ethiopian girl raised in a predominantly White community, expresses deep gratitude: “The stylists are true role models, not just for Nia, but for me. Nia has been a client since she was seven years old. Now twelve, she walks into the salon and tells Latisha exactly what style she wants, knowing she will be treated with respect and kindness. And she always walks out with her head held high and a big smile. Thank you for providing a community we are proud to be a part of!”

                              These narratives underscore the crucial support Styles 4 Kidz offers. It fosters skill, knowledge, confidence, and community connectivity, enabling children like Nia to embrace their identity and flourish.

                              A child with flowers in her hair and a group of people

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                              Photo credit: Styles 4 Kidz

                              Expanding Reach Through Digital Innovation

                              Building on these impactful stories, Styles 4 Kidz has leveraged the rise of digital platforms to extend its reach further and enhance its educational efforts. This strategic utilization of online platforms has enabled the organization to extend its educational outreach and foster community engagement far beyond traditional physical boundaries.

                              “Styles 4 Kidz developed an online platform that creates content specific to the audience served,” Tamekia details.

                              This digital approach allows parents to continuously refresh and expand their knowledge, whether building on lessons learned in previous workshops or engaging with the material for the first time from remote locations.

                              “This platform enables parents to learn all they can from afar by hearing these classes taught from a very elementary perspective where they can truly learn and grow,” she explains.

                              The online training is designed to meet the specific needs of each family, ensuring they receive the most relevant and effective education without the need to sift through less pertinent information on the internet. “We are pointing our parents to the online training, our community groups, and all our programs through social media posts to keep families engaged,” Tamekia adds, highlighting the proactive steps taken to maintain connectivity and support within their community. This digital engagement not only enhances accessibility but also builds a network of support crucial for the empowerment and success of the families Styles 4 Kidz serves.

                              Incorporating Cultural Sensitivity

                              A group of people standing together outside

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                              Photo credit: Styles 4 Kidz

                              This commitment to education is deeply intertwined with the need for cultural sensitivity, which Styles 4 Kidz prioritizes in all its workshops and training sessions. By ensuring that parents and caregivers can effectively support their child’s haircare needs, the organization fosters a deeper understanding and respect among diverse families.

                              Tamekia explains the organization’s method: “We observe the parents and caregivers and follow their lead. They are often apprehensive about how they and their children will be perceived, so we focus on breaking down cultural barriers through honest and transparent communication, free from judgment.” This strategy enhances learning and builds a supportive environment where empathy and curiosity flourish. “Everyone can thrive in an environment where learning from each other is encouraged, and lack of offense, no matter what is shared, is key.”

                              She also notes the importance of adaptability in their approach: “At times, there must be loving correction on both sides, but the perspective of shared learning empowers all involved to be present and available for the children, who are the true beneficiaries of our programs.” This balance of guidance and sensitivity makes Styles 4 Kidz’s approach both effective and transformative.

                              Charting the Future: Expansion and Outreach 

                              As Styles 4 Kidz looks to the future, the organization is set on broadening the scope of its impact to enhance mental health and well-being for children and families across more diverse communities. With plans to extend educational programs beyond their current locations, Styles 4 Kidz is poised for significant growth.

                              “Over the next few years, we plan to expand our educational programs into other states,” Tamekia explains. “We are actively training a network of passionate and committed trainers to conduct our workshops.” She invites those interested in contributing to their mission to reach out. “Stylists interested in volunteering or joining our work can contact us by filling out the interest form or emailing us at info@styles4kidz.org for an online interview. The next class is scheduled for 2025.”

                              Tamekia emphasizes the critical role of community support in their expansion efforts. “Your support is crucial in spreading the word about our mission, which brings the gift of mental health to parents and children in adoption and foster care,” she states.

                              Tamekia views every volunteer and staff member as a vital contributor to its mission, underscoring that its involvement can profoundly affect the lives of the families it serves. “We are an invaluable resource to parents and caregivers and a lifeline for kids who face daily challenges in feeling accepted for who they are. Your contribution can significantly impact their lives, helping them to feel valued and understood.”

                              Empowering the Next Generation

                              A group of girls standing on a sidewalk

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                              Photo credit: Styles 4 Kidz

                              In a society where the unique challenges of foster, biracial, and transracial adoptive families often go unnoticed, Styles 4 Kidz emerges as a pillar of hope and empowerment.

                              Guided by Tamekia’s visionary leadership, the organization has revolutionized haircare education and fostered a profound sense of community and belonging. With its blend of online and in-person resources, Styles 4 Kidz ensures that these families never face the complexities of haircare alone.

                              As the organization broadens its reach and continues refining its programs, its influence extends beyond mere haircare instruction. Styles 4 Kidz is instrumental in building confidence, strengthening mental health, and validating children’s identities, helping them feel appreciated and celebrated for their natural beauty. This endeavor is more than educational—it’s transformative, providing children and their families with the tools to thrive and embrace their appearance with pride and confidence.

                              This unwavering commitment to boosting self-esteem and promoting inclusivity enhances individual families’ lives and fosters a greater societal recognition of diversity. Looking ahead, the path of Styles 4 Kidz is not solely about hair—it embodies healing, acceptance, and the empowerment of future generations to challenge and redefine beauty norms.

                              With continued support from the community and planned expansions, Styles 4 Kidz is set to profoundly impact many more lives globally, ensuring that the beauty of diversity is acknowledged and celebrated.

                              Building Bridges, Not Barriers: The Transformative Journey of Mimi’s Braiding Bar

                              Mimi’s journey to becoming a cornerstone in the natural hair care industry began in an unexpected sanctuary—the basement of her parents’ home. Here, a youthful hobby evolved into a vibrant career deeply rooted in her cultural heritage. Like many women facing unique challenges, Mimi used hair braiding as an anchor during turbulent times and a bridge to a larger purpose. “I was the black sheep of my family, always in trouble,” Mimi recalls. Hair braiding wasn’t just a pastime; it became her way out, a path to something bigger.

                              From these humble beginnings, Mimi’s Braiding Bar has become more than a hair salon. Over the past decade, Mimi has leveraged her passion and skill to create a dynamic online community that echoes the inclusivity and safety of the physical space she first fashioned in her parents’ basement. 

                              Building Bridges, Not Barriers: The Transformative Journey of Mimi’s Braiding Bar

                              Today, Mimi’s Braiding Bar is recognized for its creativity and style and as a vital safe space that welcomes people of all ages, genders, and races. This transformation from a small basement setup to a prominent name in natural hair care illustrates Mimi’s profound impact on the industry and her community.

                              The Genesis of Mimi’s Braiding Bar

                              Reel Source: @mimisbraidingbar / Instagram

                              “Mimi’s Braiding Bar originated in the basement of my parent’s home over 10 years ago. I braided for fun for the most part,” Mimi shares. Her journey wasn’t without its hurdles, however. Labeled as a “troubled teen,” Mimi’s parents sent her to Ghana to connect with her roots, a trip that profoundly impacted her outlook. 

                              Returning, she decided to channel her energies into something positive—braiding. “I started doing hair more, and it became my passion. It also kept me out of trouble,” she explains. Recognizing the power of digital platforms, Mimi extended her reach online, creating an inclusive space that mirrored her shop’s respect and professionalism.

                              The Role of Protective Styles in Mental Health

                              Building Bridges, Not Barriers: The Transformative Journey of Mimi’s Braiding Bar
                              Image Source: @thelifeof.chi

                              Building on the strong foundation of her physical shop, Mimi has used her platform to emphasize the benefits of protective styles, which play a significant role in her clients’ mental well-being. 

                              Protective styles save time and allow you more energy and time to focus on self-care, new experiences, and promote hair growth, Mimi notes.

                              These styles do more than maintain hair health; they empower her clients to experiment with their looks safely. This ability to transform one’s appearance, even temporarily, enhances self-perception and boosts confidence, key aspects that contribute to an individual’s overall mental health.

                              Fostering Community Engagement Online

                              Extending the impact of her salon into the digital realm, Mimi actively fosters a vibrant online community. “I do this by sharing relatable stories, creating educational content, and most importantly, engaging with followers and tailoring my content to their concerns and needs,” Mimi states. 

                              This personalized approach makes her followers feel heard and valued and solidifies the Braiding Bar’s role as a community cornerstone. Through these online interactions, Mimi continues to build a supportive network that mirrors the nurturing environment of her physical shop.

                              Educational Impact and Empowerment

                              Reel Source: @mimisbraidingbar / Instagram

                              Leveraging her online platform, Mimi deepens her commitment to the community through education. She offers classes and seminars that empower her community with knowledge and skills. 

                              “I use my platform to educate clients on their options for hair care and styling,” she explains, emphasizing the significance of equipping individuals, especially young girls and women, with the tools to care for their hair independently. This educational initiative is a natural progression from her engagement efforts, ensuring that her community feels supported, well-informed, and self-sufficient.

                              Supporting Mental Health Initiatives

                              Turning our discussion towards mental health, particularly in observance of Mental Health Awareness Month, I asked Mimi how she tailors her activities to enhance the psychological well-being of her community. Mimi explained that her approach is thoughtful and innovative, reflecting her deep commitment to supporting her client’s mental health.

                              “In general, I have a place in the shop dedicated to clients who are just not themselves,” she describes. Her shop offers silent appointments and plays inspirational music from 8 AM to 12 PM to create a calming environment, effectively acknowledging and sensitively addressing her clients’ mental health needs. This adaptation showcases her dedication to fostering a supportive atmosphere transcending mere hair care.

                              Challenges and Rewards in Maintaining an Inclusive Space

                              Reel Source: @mimisbraidingbar / Instagram

                              Maintaining a safe online environment is challenging, but Mimi’s commitment to positivity and education helps her navigate these waters. “We try to keep our platform clean and free of bullying and harassment,” she asserts. This commitment has cultivated a community where kindness reigns supreme, uplifting every interaction within the space.

                              Community Response and Impactful Stories

                              Image Source: @mimisbraidingbar

                              Following our discussion on mental health initiatives, I explored Mimi’s difficulties and successes in maintaining an inclusive online and physical environment. Maintaining a safe and welcoming online space comes with challenges, but Mimi’s steadfast commitment to positivity and educational outreach has been pivotal. 

                              We try to keep our platform clean and free of bullying and harassment, she asserts.

                              This proactive approach has helped cultivate a community where kindness prevails, ensuring that every interaction within Mimi’s Braiding Bar uplifts and supports, thus reinforcing the integrity of the safe space she has created.

                              Vision for the Future

                              Building Bridges, Not Barriers: The Transformative Journey of Mimi’s Braiding Bar
                              Image Source: @timawhimaa

                              Building on her solid foundation, Mimi looks to the future with a vision centered on expanding her influence, particularly through mentoring troubled teens.

                              “I am now looking to mentor troubled teens. I wish I had someone I could talk to without being judged,” she reflects thoughtfully. Her plans include forging partnerships with local high schools to offer support and guidance, aiming to extend the nurturing environment of her shop to serve the broader needs of her community.

                              Mimi’s Braiding Bar is more than just a hair salon; it represents a movement—a testament to the transformative power of creating a safe, inclusive space in the beauty industry. Through her dedication, Mimi continues to weave a tapestry of empowerment, education, and emotional support, demonstrating that every strand of hair—and every individual—has a valuable story worth telling.

                              Conclusion

                              Building Bridges, Not Barriers: The Transformative Journey of Mimi’s Braiding Bar
                              Image Source: @mannequinskin

                              Mimi’s Braiding Bar is more than a hair salon; it’s a testament to the transformative power of turning personal challenges into empowering opportunities. From its modest beginnings in a basement to becoming a cornerstone in the natural hair care industry, Mimi’s establishment is where beauty and wellness intersect, where each braid woven tells a story of resilience, and every style crafted speaks of strength.

                              Through her dedication to inclusivity, mental health awareness, and community engagement, Mimi has created a space that transcends traditional beauty services. Her initiatives in education and creating a supportive online environment have fostered a community where individuals feel valued and empowered. Mimi’s future plans to mentor troubled teens and extend her supportive reach into local schools underscore her commitment to nurturing the next generation.

                              Reflecting on the journey and looking to the future, Mimi states, “This isn’t just a business; it’s a movement. It’s about showing that from little things, big things grow.” Mimi’s Braiding Bar is a dynamic example of how dedication, community, and personal growth can intertwine to create something truly impactful.

                              18 Braiding Classes for Beginners to Enroll in ASAP

                              Braiding is more than just a hairstyle; it is a craft deeply rooted in history and culture, celebrated for its beauty, functionality, and significance across various societies. The rise of braid education reflects a broader cultural appreciation and desire to uphold these traditional hairstyling methods while infusing them with modern creativity. This renaissance has brought braiding to the forefront of hair fashion and opened opportunities for individuals to embrace and innovate within this artistic domain. 

                              18 Braiding Classes for Beginners to Enroll in ASAP
                              Image Source: @everything.enyi

                              The expansion of braid education, primarily through accessible online platforms and specialized workshops, has democratized the ability to learn and master braiding, ensuring that this valuable skill is preserved and passed down through generations. By enrolling in braiding classes, beginners are not just learning to style hair; they are keeping alive a rich heritage and participating in a vibrant, ongoing cultural dialogue. 

                              Below, we explore 18 diverse braiding courses offered by stylists, salons, and braiding specialists. We have chosen each course to highlight essential techniques, course details, and their ideal suitability for those beginning their braiding journey.

                              1. Braids by Kayba – Atlanta, GA

                              Reel Source: @braidsbykayba / Instagram

                              Kayba offers a variety of braiding courses tailored for different audiences and skill levels. Each course provides essential techniques, tools, and supportive learning environments, making them ideal for beginners. Here’s a concise overview:

                              Braid Camp Adult:

                              Cost and Length: $425 for a two-day, five-hour workshop.

                              Highlights: Geared towards teens, this workshop covers a variety of styles, including knotless, feed-in, and stitch braids, along with essential business skills. It comes with a braider’s kit, mannequin head, work binder, and more, providing a comprehensive package for those looking to dive deep into braiding.

                              18 Braiding Classes for Beginners to Enroll in ASAP
                              Image Source: @braidsbykayba

                              Adult Group Classes:

                              Cost and Length: $175 for a 2-hour session.

                              Highlights: These classes focus on basic braids, plaits, and cornrows and are perfect for adults beginning their braiding journey. Participants receive a braider’s kKit and mannequin head in a group setting, fostering a friendly learning atmosphere.

                              1:1 Class:

                              Cost and Length: $275 for a personalized two-hour session.

                              Highlights: This one-on-one class offers tailored instruction in braids, plaits, cornrows, and a comprehensive braider’s kit with a mannequin head. It’s ideal for those who wish to practice specific techniques or just style hair.

                              Virtual Class:

                              Cost and Length: $325 for a 2-hour session accessible anywhere.

                              Highlights: Offering foundational braiding techniques, this class includes a braider’s kit shipped to participants. It’s an excellent option for beginners who prefer the flexibility of learning from home with the benefit of hands-on experience.

                              2. The Braid Bar – Los Angeles, CA

                              Video Source: @braidbar / vimeo

                              The Braid Bar in Los Angeles, CA, is a place for everyone interested in braiding. They offer a variety of classes for beginners and advanced students, ensuring that everyone feels welcome and comfortable. Led by Twy, these courses provide a practical, hands-on learning environment equipped with all the necessary tools.

                              Braid Academy Orientation:

                              Cost and Length: $285 for a 2-hour one-on-one session, $195 for a group session, or $150 for a Zoom session.

                              Highlights: Ideal for beginners, this session introduces the basics of braiding, including hair preparation techniques like pre-stretching and sectioning. It also covers fundamental braiding skills such as parting and sectioning hair. Participants receive a braider’s kit with a mannequin head (for class use), a digital handbook, and other essential tools. This course provides a strong foundation in braiding, blending theoretical knowledge with practical skills.

                              3. Braid Fanatic Salon – Lake Worth Beach, FL

                              Reel Source: @braidfanaticsalon / Instagram

                              Braid Fanatic Salon in Lakeworth, FL, presents a masterclass designed for all skill levels, from beginners to advanced braiders or those simply looking to enhance their understanding of hair care for themselves or their children.

                              Masterclass (In-Person):

                              Cost and Length: $499 for 1 hour.

                              Highlights: This intensive session covers the art of knotless braiding, selecting quality products, perfecting parting techniques, and adding hair for left-handed individuals. It’s an excellent choice for quick, comprehensive learning tailored to new and experienced braiders.

                              18 Braiding Classes for Beginners to Enroll in ASAP
                              Image Source: @braid_fanatic11

                              Virtual Braiding Course:

                              Cost and Duration: $399; duration varies.

                              Highlights: This flexible online course is perfect for learning essential braiding techniques and hair care tips at your own pace from home.

                              Both courses at Braid Fanatic Salon provide foundational to advanced braiding insights, making them ideal for anyone looking to quickly grasp or refine their braiding skills through practical, hands-on instruction.

                              4. Mercedes / Aurora, Illinois

                              Reel Source: @mercedesstyles101 / TikTok

                              Mercedes, a master braider based in Aurora, IL, brings over 20 years of industry experience to her craft. She continuously educates herself and keeps up with the latest trends. In 2021, Mercedes further solidified her credentials by becoming a certified and licensed hair braider.

                              Group Class (In-Person):

                              Cost and Length: $350 for a 60-minute session.

                              Highlights: This group class is an excellent opportunity for enthusiasts to learn from a seasoned professional who teaches fundamental and advanced braiding techniques and incorporates the latest styles and trends into her instruction. Ideal for those looking to enhance their skills in a dynamic group setting, the session is designed to provide valuable insights and hands-on experience from a renowned braider. 

                              5. The Braid Fairy – Charleston, SC

                              Reel Source: @thebraidfairy / TikTok

                              Nakita Manigault-Jones has transitioned from teaching to pursuing her passion for helping individuals grow and maintain healthy hair. Her unique approach focuses on personalized development and care techniques.

                              One-on-One Braiding Class:

                              Cost and Length: $275 for a session scheduled upon booking.

                              Highlights: This personalized one-on-one class is ideal for aspiring braiders, professionals looking to refine their skills, or parents aiming to effectively manage their children’s hair. The class is tailored to each student’s needs and skill improvement areas, ensuring focused and practical learning. The class includes a kit featuring Nakita’s preferred braiding tools for beginners, providing a solid foundation for anyone starting their braiding journey.

                              6. Yadi Black Creations– Philadelphia, PA

                              Reel Source: @yadiblackcreations / TikTok

                              Yadi, a licensed cosmetologist with over 20 years of braiding experience, offers specialized training in knotless braiding through her “Knotless 1 on 1 with YadiBlack” course.

                              Knotless 1 on 1 with YadiBlack:

                              Cost and Length: $250 for a 3-hour session.

                              Highlights: This one-on-one training session is perfect for anyone looking to master the technique of knotless braiding, making it ideal for new and experienced braiders who want to refine their skills in this popular braiding style.

                              7. Houston Braids – Houston, TX

                              Reel Source: @houston_braids / Instagram

                              Donae Madison, a licensed professional braider and Certified Hair Loss Practitioner with over 17 years of experience, owns two hair braiding salons in Houston, TX—Braids by Nae and Queendom Hair Studio. Recently, she launched the Houston Braids Training Center, a new venture aimed at revolutionizing braiding education. This center combines a deep respect for the cultural significance of braiding with innovative teaching methods, offering a comprehensive learning experience for enthusiasts at all levels.

                              18 Braiding Classes for Beginners to Enroll in ASAP

                              Braid Boss Houston:

                              Cost and Length: $325 for a one-day intensive course.

                              Highlights: This course is designed for a dynamic learning experience where beginners to braiding can quickly become proficient. Techniques covered include cornrows, knotless braids, feed-in/stitch, and box braids. Note that the class is fast-paced, but small class sizes ensure personalized attention, making it possible for most beginners to master each technique within the day. Prior knowledge of under-hand plaiting is beneficial but optional. For those seeking more extensive training, a week-long course is also available. This setting is perfect for anyone eager to dive deep into braiding and emerge as a skilled ‘Braid Boss.’

                              8. Braids by Unique – Garland, Texas

                              Reel Source: @braidsbyunique_ / Instagram

                              Braids by Unique provides a range of classes designed to cater to various braiding needs and skill levels, from beginners to those looking to refine specific techniques. Each class offers a focused, hands-on approach to learning.

                              1-on-1 Cornrow Braiding Class:

                              Cost and Length: $150 for 2 hours.

                              Highlights: Ideal for those new to braiding. This class offers a perfect starting point for mastering the basics of cornrow braiding.

                              18 Braiding Classes for Beginners to Enroll in ASAP

                              One-on-One Braiding Class:

                              Cost and Length: $350 for 3 hours.

                              Highlights: This personalized session allows for an in-depth focus on stitch braiding, beginner cornrows, plaits, or knotless braids. 

                              $99 Braid Class:

                              Cost and Length: $99 for 2 hours.

                              Highlights: Open to everyone aged 7 and older, this class chooses between learning cornrows, stitch braids, and knotless braids. This class is conducted via Zoom or FaceTime and is excellent for those seeking an accessible introductory braiding experience.

                              9. Art Moon Studio – San Diego, CA

                              Image Source: @artmoonstudio / Instagram

                              Art Moon Studio offers a virtual braiding course designed for learners who prefer to study at their own pace. This course is focused on mastering various braiding styles through comprehensive online instruction.

                              18 Braiding Classes for Beginners to Enroll in ASAP
                              Image Source: @artmoonstudio / Instagram

                              Virtual Braiding Course:

                              Cost and Length: $429, including nine in-depth videos.

                              Highlights: This course is ideal for anyone looking to master braiding with detailed, self-guided video tutorials. Covering multiple types of braids, the course provides learners with step-by-step instructions to perfect their braiding skills. The virtual format allows for flexible learning, enabling students to revisit lessons as needed and progress according to their own schedules. This setup is perfect for beginners and experienced braiders looking to enhance their technique from the comfort of their homes.

                              10. She Braids It All – St. Paul, MN

                              Reel Source @shebraidsitall / Instagram

                              She Braids It All offers an extensive one-week braiding class for learners of all ages and skill levels, from complete beginners to experienced braiders seeking to broaden their repertoire. The class is taught by a professional braider with seven years of experience in the industry.

                              One-Week Braiding Class:

                              Cost and Length: $1400 for 2 hours daily over one week.

                              Highlights: This comprehensive course is structured to cover a wide range of braiding styles and techniques. Starting with the basics, the class gradually moves into more advanced styles, including knotless braids, box braids, and cornrows. Each day is dedicated to a different technique, ensuring thorough understanding and skill development. 

                              11. The Bossie Experience – Seattle, WA

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                              Reel Source: @harmonyjustice / Facebook

                              Harmony Justice, owner of The Bossi Experience, offers specialized braiding courses for kids and adults at her studio. These hands-on courses are tailored to the specific needs of each age group.

                              Bossi Kidz Braiding Course:

                              Cost and Length: $400 for 4 hours.

                              Highlights: This one-on-one braiding course is designed for children and teens eager to learn braiding. It’s a fantastic opportunity for young learners to gain confidence in their braiding skills in a supportive and engaging environment.

                              Bossi’s Beginner Course for Adults:

                              Cost and Length: $450 for 4 hours.

                              Highlights: Aimed at adults, this course covers essential braiding techniques, including basic scalp, knotless, and box braids. Participants will also learn clean parting and techniques tailored to their individual style. This course is perfect for beginners looking to develop a solid foundation in braiding and customize their skills to suit personal or professional needs.

                              12. Ms. GG Stylez– Broward, FL

                              Reel Source @msggstylez / Instagram

                              Ms. GG Stylez, a licensed hairstylist in Broward, FL, offers a comprehensive braiding class for beginners. This class is designed to teach the fundamentals of braiding to those with little to no experience or those aspiring to become professional braiders.

                              Braiding Classes for Beginners:

                              Cost and Length: $600. The duration is not specified but detailed, as it is hands-on and thorough.

                              Highlights: This class is perfect for beginners and covers various techniques and skills. Participants will learn how to do box braids and cornrows, with and without weave, and how to execute feed-in braids. Ms. GG Stylez will also teach her specific techniques for extending braids to desired lengths, creating precision parts, and selecting the right products. Additional lessons include the tucking method, proper hair preparation, determining the correct amount of hair to use, and important practices in sanitation and sterilizing. 

                              13. Keyana Roberts – Chandler, AZ

                              Reel Source: @queens_touch28 / Instagram

                              Keyana Glass offers comprehensive braiding classes for beginners, both in-person and virtually, catering to those looking to master basic braiding techniques.

                              1-1 Beginners Braiding Class (In-Person):

                              Cost and Length: $175 for 2 hours.

                              Highlights: This class is ideal for beginners and covers essential braiding skills, including braids/plaits and cornrows. Designed for individuals wanting to style their hair or quickly style their children’s hair, the class includes a braider’s kit with a mannequin head for practice. It’s a perfect introduction for those new to braiding, offering hands-on learning.

                              18 Braiding Classes for Beginners to Enroll in ASAP
                              Image Source: @blacksuccesslife_

                              Virtual 1-1 Beginners Braiding Class:

                              Cost and Length: $225 for 2 hours.

                              Highlights: Like the in-person class, this virtual option teaches braiding basics, including braids/plaits and cornrows. The class, tailored for convenience, includes a braider’s kit shipped to participants and is conducted over Google Meet. This format is suited for those who prefer to learn from home while still receiving personalized instruction and hands-on practice with provided materials.

                              14. Prestige Styles – Worcester, MA

                              Reel Source: @prestige_hairslays / Instagram

                              Prestige Styles offers a focused one-on-one braiding class designed to teach the foundational skills necessary for braiding. The class specifically targets those who are new to the craft or looking to improve their basic techniques.

                              One-on-One Braiding Class for Braids:

                              Cost and Length: $250 for 3 hours.

                              Highlights: This class introduces various braiding styles, including box braids and knotless braids, emphasizing learning how to properly part hair and add extensions (note: adding extensions is only covered if the participant already knows the basic braiding techniques). Participants will receive a braids starter kit and a comprehensive product list to assist them in their learning process. The course is intended to lay down the fundamental aspects of braiding. While it aims to equip students with essential skills, it also sets realistic expectations that mastering braiding may require further education beyond this initial class.

                              This class is perfect for anyone looking to start their journey in braiding with a thorough understanding of the basics, provided in a personalized and supportive learning environment.

                              15. Naturally TB – Lake Charles, LA

                              Reel Source: @naturally_tb / Instagram

                              Aironna, a licensed stylist, braider, and salon owner in Lake Charles, LA, has been active in the industry since 2013. She offers a comprehensive 2-Day Beginner Course on stitch braiding, perfect for newcomers or those seeking to refine their skills under expert guidance.

                              1 Stitch Braid Tour: 2-Day Beginner Course (In-Person):

                              Cost and Length: $500 for 4 hours across two days.

                              Highlights: Participants will learn the fundamental aspects of braiding, including hand placement, parting and molding hair, three different stitch braiding techniques, how to incorporate feed-in hair, and how to apply finishing touches to their styles. The class is designed to provide a solid foundation in stitch braiding, with hands-on training from a licensed professional in a supportive and educational setting. This beginner course is an excellent investment for those looking to start or advance their braiding skills, providing thorough training in specific techniques essential for creating polished and professional-looking braids.

                              16. Braided by Christy – Hattiesburg, MS

                              Reel Source: @braidedbychristy / Instagram

                              Braided by Christy offers a comprehensive array of braiding classes, both in-person and virtual, designed to cater to different braiding techniques and styles. These classes are structured as one-on-one sessions to ensure personalized instruction.

                              All in One Class:

                              Cost and Length: $850 for 6 hours.

                              Highlights: This extensive in-person class covers knotless, box, and stitch braids. Participants learn about product and tool usage, how to add in hair, proper techniques for cutting and dipping, and more. Ideal for those looking to master multiple braiding styles in a single session.

                              Knotless & Box Braid Class:

                              Cost and Length: $550 for 3 hours.

                              Highlights: Focused on two popular styles, this in-person class teaches the essentials of knotless and box braids, providing hands-on experience in these specific techniques.

                              Feed In/Stitch Class:

                              Cost and Length: $550 for 3 hours.

                              Highlights: This in-person session dives into feed-in and stitch braids, emphasizing detailed braiding techniques for those styles.

                              18 Braiding Classes for Beginners to Enroll in ASAP
                              Image Source: @janaea.laura

                              Soft Locs Class:

                              Cost and Length: $600 for 3 hours.

                              Highlights: Dedicated to the technique of soft locs, this class provides in-depth instruction on creating this increasingly popular style.

                              Virtual Stitch Braid Class:

                              Cost and Length: $250 for 3 hours.

                              Highlights: This virtual class focuses on completing a head of 5-6 stitch braids, covering everything from product choice to hand placement and final touches.

                              Virtual Knotless Class:

                              Cost and Length: $300 for 4 hours.

                              Highlights: Conducted online, this session covers the essentials of creating knotless braids, providing a detailed virtual learning experience.

                              Virtual Soft Loc Class:

                              Cost and Length: $300 for 3 hours.

                              Highlights: Also offered virtually, this class teaches the specifics of making soft locs, which is ideal for learners who prefer remote instruction.

                              17. Sweeting’s Cosmetology & Braiding Institute – Nashville, TN

                              18 Braiding Classes for Beginners to Enroll in ASAP
                              Image Source: @sweetings_hairworld / Instagram

                              Sweeting’s Cosmetology Braiding Institute in Nashville, Tennessee, offers comprehensive training tailored to excel in the natural hair salon industry. With an emphasis on hands-on experience, the institute provides two distinct courses to enhance skills and certify new professionals.

                              Natural Hair Styling Course:

                              Cost: $3,000

                              Highlights: This extensive course is for those aiming to master natural hair styling comprehensively. It culminates in a Braider Certification, priced at an additional $300. Upon completing the course, students have the unique opportunity to work at the on-site Sweeting’s Natural Hair Salon in Nashville, Tennessee, which allows them to apply their newly acquired skills in a professional setting immediately.

                              Braiding Bootcamp:

                              Cost: $1,000

                              Highlights: Ideal for those seeking a quick and focused learning path, the Braiding Bootcamp covers essential braiding styles such as feed-in braids, butterfly/faux locs, box braids, and knotless braids. This course is perfect for students aiming to earn a certificate and quickly learn multiple popular braiding techniques.

                              Both programs at Sweeting’s Cosmetology Braiding Institute are structured to provide top-tier education and practical skills in the natural hair styling industry, ensuring graduates are well-prepared to excel in professional environments.

                              18. The Braiding Lab – Birmingham, AL

                              Image Source: @nay_thebraidologist / TikTok

                              The Braiding Lab, located in Birmingham, AL, and operated by Auset Williams and NayNay Boyd, presents an in-depth Starter Loc Masterclass specifically designed for those interested in learning the foundational skills necessary to start locs professionally.

                              Starter Loc Masterclass:

                              Cost and Length: $480 for 4 hours.

                              Highlights: This masterclass focuses on the essential techniques of starting locs, guided by the expertise of NayNay Boyd. Participants will gain hands-on experience in initiating locs properly, ensuring they are set up for success in this specialized hair styling area.

                              This class is ideal for individuals who specialize in loc services. It gives them a solid foundation and expert guidance to master the craft.

                              Conclusion: Celebrating the Craft and Culture of Braiding

                              In conclusion, braiding embodies a rich tapestry of styles, each carrying significant cultural and historical value. The courses highlighted here showcase various braiding techniques, from the meticulous art of locs to the precision of stitch braids and the versatility of feed-in and knotless braids.

                              These educational opportunities allow beginners and seasoned stylists to enhance their skills and push the boundaries of hair artistry. Enrolling in these courses actively engages individuals with the broader cultural narratives embedded in each braiding style. This vibrant legacy of braiding continues to thrive, fueled by a community dedicated to preserving and innovating this unique form of craftsmanship.

                              The Best Mommy + Me Products to Keep Handy

                              April is Black Maternal Health Month and International Black Women’s Month, a time when the spotlight shines on health and the nurturing aspects of motherhood, including hair care. This period is crucial for new mothers as they adjust to changes in their bodies and lifestyles, notably changes in hair health.

                              Hair Health for New Moms

                              Postpartum hair loss, commonly experienced by new mothers, involves significant shedding and changes in hair texture due to hormonal fluctuations after childbirth. This shedding is temporary and typically linked to falling estrogen levels, which can be alarming but is usually resolved within a year.

                              Image Source: @rie_undefined

                              Mothers must adapt their hair care routines during this adjustment phase to maintain aesthetics and promote scalp health. While new moms navigate the complexities of postpartum hair loss and adjust their hair care routines accordingly, it’s equally important to consider the distinct needs of their babies. Just as hormonal changes impact a mother’s hair health, a baby’s hair and skin also require special attention to ensure they remain healthy and irritation-free.

                              Considerations for Baby Hair Care

                              The Best Mommy + Me Products to Keep Handy
                              Image Source: @nyla_lelilani_

                              Baby hair and skin are far more sensitive than adults, requiring gentle care to avoid irritation. Their delicate skin loses moisture more rapidly and has lower lipid levels, and it benefits from mild and moisture-retentive hair care products.

                              Parents should choose baby shampoos and conditioners free of harsh chemicals and strong surfactants, such as sulfates and cationic surfactants, which can irritate a baby’s delicate skin and disrupt its skin barrier. Here’s how to select the right products and establish a gentle hair-washing routine:

                              • Product Selection: Opt for non-ionic surfactants that provide effective cleaning with low irritation risk.
                              • Hair Washing Routine: Washing a baby’s hair two to three times a week with shampoos rich in natural oils and emollients is sufficient to maintain hygiene and moisture without causing dryness or buildup.
                              • Natural Conditioning: We recommend using natural oils and butters for infants instead of traditional conditioners. These natural products gently moisturize, detangle, and protect baby hair by creating a fine, protective coating.

                              Integrating Baby and Mom Hair Care

                              The Best Mommy + Me Products to Keep Handy
                              Image Source: @whatsupchanel

                              For new moms, managing postpartum hair involves using sulfate-free shampoos to avoid stripping natural oils and choosing lightweight but hydrating conditioners. Embracing loose, protective hairstyles can also help manage new textures and minimize hair stress. This integrative approach ensures that both mom and baby benefit from products that nourish without overwhelming their delicate structures, thereby maintaining healthy, well-managed hair during this transformative time.

                              As we navigate the needs of both mom and baby, selecting products that effectively cater to both is essential and reassuring. This careful selection helps ensure that both mother and child receive the optimal benefits without compromising safety or efficacy. Given new moms’ unique challenges during the postpartum period, choosing the right products is key to restoring and maintaining healthy hair.

                              Top Mommy + Me Hair Care Products

                              The Best Mommy + Me Products to Keep Handy
                              Image Source: @comeseehairef

                              When selecting the best hair care products for moms and their little ones, you should consider several key factors that ensure safety, effectiveness, and overall satisfaction. We chose the products featured in this roundup based on their safe ingredients, efficacy, and strong brand reputation.

                              Each product is designed with delicate baby skin and hair in mind while also catering to mothers’ specific hair care needs. Selecting products that combat hair loss and promote overall hair health and recovery is essential when addressing postpartum hair care. These products use natural, nourishing ingredients to soothe the scalp, strengthen hair, and provide vital nutrients that restore growth.

                              Let’s explore some of the top picks that are ideal for family-friendly hair care routines:

                              1. PROUDLY Hair Care Collection 4-Piece Bundle

                              The Best Mommy + Me Products to Keep Handy

                              PROUDLY stands out due to its dedication to hydration and suitability for susceptible skin, making it perfect for babies. This collection is pediatrician—and dermatologist-approved, hypoallergenic, and free from harsh chemicals like sulfates, parabens, and synthetic fragrances.

                              The 4-piece bundle includes products that nurture developing waves, curls, and coils. It features gentle-for-baby ingredients that cleanse, nourish the scalp, soften, define hair patterns, and enhance manageability. This bundle helps revive natural curl patterns while removing dirt, impurities, and residue without the harsh elements of many adult hair care products.

                              2. PROUDLY Nourishing Hair & Body Oil

                              The Best Mommy + Me Products to Keep Handy

                              Natural oils are excellent hair moisturizing, detangling, and softening agents. They are mild, green, and sustainable, and their hydrophobic nature allows them to form a delicate, fine coating on scalp hair. Additionally, they moisturize the scalp surface and prevent water loss, enhancing the overall health of the hair and scalp. A blend of natural oils and butter is ideal for conditioning baby hair, as it provides gentle and effective care without the harsh chemicals in many traditional products.

                              This plant-based oil by Proudly exemplifies these benefits with its blend of premium oils, including jojoba, sunflower seed, and rosehip, all enriched with squalane and vitamin E. Its light and non-greasy formulation makes it perfect for both hair and body application, ensuring that a small amount goes a long way in providing moisture and nourishment. Suitable for babies and adults, this oil not only soothes and protects the skin but also reinforces the skin’s natural barrier, offering essential hydration and supporting overall skin and hair health.

                              3. FROBabies Hair Detangle Me Baby Leave-in Conditioner

                              The Best Mommy + Me Products to Keep Handy

                              FROBabies Hair’s Detangle Me Baby Leave-in Conditioner is tailored for babies 12 months and older. It’s a superb detangler that doubles as a nourishing leave-in conditioner. Made with honey, it strengthens hair strands and protects against breakage. This product simplifies combing, styling, and managing your child’s hair, making it an indispensable part of a daily hair care routine for kids with tender scalps and prone to tangles.

                              4. Cara B Natural Baby Shampoo & Body Wash

                              The Best Mommy + Me Products to Keep Handy

                              Cara B’s product offers an all-in-one solution, such as baby shampoo and body wash. Its tear-free formula provides a soothing bath experience with an extra-rich lather that leaves hair and skin silky and clean. This product is particularly beneficial for children with eczema, featuring ingredients like vitamin E and aloe to moisturize and soothe, complemented by a calming all-natural chamomile fragrance.

                              Infants’ hair is delicate, fine, and fragile, and it gains diameter and texture with age due to the maturation of follicle activity. This development underscores the importance of using gentle ingredients in baby shampoos. Non-ionic surfactants, such as decyl glucoside found in this shampoo, are the optimal choice because they provide superior cleaning abilities, are mild, and have a low irritation risk. This makes them suitable for the sensitive and evolving nature of baby hair and scalp.

                              5. Coconut Baby Oil for Hair & Skin

                              The Best Mommy + Me Products to Keep Handy

                              Coconut Baby Oil is an excellent organic moisturizer for hair and skin care. It’s particularly effective for treating cradle caps, soothing irritated skin, and promoting a healthy scalp. This chemical-free oil is designed for extra-sensitive skin and includes organic coconut oil that protects, softens, and moisturizes. It’s versatile enough to be used as a daily moisturizer for babies and adults, providing gentle and effective skincare.

                              These products meet the highest standards for baby safety and offer the quality and effectiveness that parents expect. They provide a practical and enjoyable way to care for both mother’s and baby’s hair and skin, making them ideal for shared routines and strengthening the bonding experience through personal care rituals.

                              6. Bask & Bloom Herbal Infused Hair & Scalp Oil

                              The Best Mommy + Me Products to Keep Handy

                              The Herbal Infused Hair & Scalp Oil from Bask & Bloom is an excellent choice for new moms experiencing postpartum hair thinning and scalp sensitivity. Infused with potent herbs like Nettle, Horsetail, Amla, and Burdock Root, this oil is rich in minerals such as silica and sulfur, which are known to reduce hair loss and stimulate hair growth. 

                              Additionally, it features a blend of scalp-friendly oils like Sacha Inchi, Moringa, and Sweet Almond Oil, which soothe and repair dry, irritated scalps. Its lightweight formula with Avocado, Jojoba, and Grapeseed Oil locks in moisture and adds a healthy sheen to the hair, addressing the dryness often seen in postpartum hair.

                              7. HAIRBURST Postpartum Vitamins 

                              The Best Mommy + Me Products to Keep Handy

                              HAIRBURST specifically formulates Postpartum Vitamins to combat post-pregnancy hair loss while ensuring safety for breastfeeding mothers. These vitamins feature a blend of Biotin, B Vitamins, and Folic Acid, which are crucial for hair growth and overall recovery during and after pregnancy. They support the physical aspects of hair growth and combat pregnancy fatigue, serving as a dual-action solution for new mothers.

                              8. Melanin Haircare Plumping Deep Conditioner

                              This deep conditioner enriches moms with postpartum brittle, dry, or damaged hair. It uses hyaluronic acid, known for its intense hydrating properties. It helps hair attract and maintain moisture, reducing frizz and softening brittle strands. Bamboo Extract and Biotin enhance the conditioner’s effectiveness by adding shine, improving elasticity, and strengthening hair, making it a powerhouse for enhancing hair health postpartum.

                              9. Mielle Rosemary Mint Strengthening Shampoo & Conditioner

                              The Best Mommy + Me Products to Keep Handy

                              Mielle’s Rosemary Mint line is ideal for mothers looking to restore the strength and vitality of their hair. The shampoo cleanses gently yet thoroughly, infused with nutrients like biotin and organic oils such as coconut and babassu seed oil. These ingredients provide intense moisture and promote an unrivaled slip, which helps prevent breakage during washing. The accompanying conditioner detangles and softens hair instantly, improving manageability while supporting longer, healthier hair growth.

                              10. Shea Moisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Leave-In Conditioner

                              The Best Mommy + Me Products to Keep Handy

                              This leave-in conditioner is superb for moms who need to control frizz and detangle postpartum curls without hassle. Formulated with Jamaican Black Castor Oil and fair-trade Shea Butter, it nourishes and moisturizes the hair, enhancing elasticity to resist breakage when detangling. 

                              Conclusion

                              As we conclude this comprehensive guide during Black Maternal Health Month and International Black Women’s Month, it’s clear that hair health and care during and after pregnancy are pivotal aspects of motherhood that require thoughtful consideration and action. Whether navigating the challenges of postpartum hair loss experienced by new mothers or ensuring the gentle care of a baby’s sensitive hair and skin, choosing the right hair care products cannot be overstated.

                              Integrating suitable, gentle, and effective products into daily routines ensures that both mother and baby enjoy optimal hair health. For mothers, particularly those managing unique and diverse natural hair textures, using sulfate-free shampoos and hydrating conditioners/masks and adopting protective hairstyles provide a strong foundation for maintaining healthy hair. For babies, selecting shampoos and conditioners free from harsh chemicals and using natural oils and butters for conditioning protects and nurtures their delicate hair and skin.

                              Ultimately, the products chosen for both mommy and baby play a critical role in not only addressing the specific needs of each but also in fostering a nurturing environment that supports their overall well-being. This approach helps maintain healthy, well-managed hair and strengthens the bonding experience through shared personal care rituals, enriching the journey through motherhood.

                              18 Coachella Hair Moments That Turned Heads

                              Coachella isn’t just a music festival; it’s a vibrant canvas where artistry and self-expression are encouraged and celebrated with enthusiasm—and nowhere is this more evident than in the spectacular array of hairstyles that unfold under the California sun. This cultural phenomenon has become a haven for hair enthusiasts, where the desert becomes a runway for the most daring dos, from the sleek Type 1s that shimmer in the sunlight to the voluptuous Type 4s that speak volumes of heritage and pride.

                              Image Source: @ashleeswest

                              As we explore 18 standout Coachella hair moments, we pay homage to the creativity and diversity of styles gracing the festival grounds. Braids aren’t just a style; they’re statements woven with stories. Sleek ponytails rise to the occasion with gravity-defying grace, and colors meld into the strands as if painted by the sunset. 

                              Join us as we explore the chronicles of Coachella’s hair history, where every coil, curve, and color is a melody in the symphony of style.

                              Type 1 Straight Hair

                              1. Gwen Stefani’s ‘90s Revival

                              18 Coachella Hair Moments That Turned Heads
                              Image Source: @gwenstefani / Instagram

                              Gwen Stefani’s Coachella look channeled her ’90s roots with a sleek, straight blonde ponytail that added a polished and nostalgic touch to her ensemble, perfectly embodying her iconic style with a modern twist.

                              2. Space Buns

                              18 Coachella Hair Moments That Turned Heads
                              Image Source: Photographed by Emily Malan / @refinery29.com

                              This Coachella attendee rocked playful space buns with her straight hair, adding a fun twist to her festival look.

                              3. Fiery Passion Braided Ponytail

                              18 Coachella Hair Moments That Turned Heads
                              Image Source: @chloejane / Instagram

                              An attendee made a statement with their bold red long braided hairstyle, featuring waist-length braids in a vibrant shade of red that added a striking and passionate touch to their Coachella look.

                              Type 2 Wavy Hair

                              4. Vanessa Hudgens’ Boho Waves

                              18 Coachella Hair Moments That Turned Heads
                              Image Source: @vanessahudgens / Instagram

                              Vanessa Hudgens embraced the boho look with loose, beachy waves, perfectly complementing her festival attire.

                              5. Pink Rodeo

                              18 Coachella Hair Moments That Turned Heads
                              Image Source: @niki / Instagram

                              Pairing the classic charm of a cowboy hat with pink hair, this look effortlessly merges Western style with a pop of bold color, creating a lively and eye-catching Coachella ensemble.

                              6. Boho Bead Waves

                              18 Coachella Hair Moments That Turned Heads
                              Image Source: @justinemarjan / Instagram

                              This hairstyle exudes a bohemian vibe with its soft pink waves gently cascading, intricately adorned with beads, charms, and chains that catch the light and add a playful, artistic flair to the look.

                              7. Whimsy Waves

                              18 Coachella Hair Moments That Turned Heads
                              Image Source: @shananananbanananaa / Instagram

                              This enchanting hairstyle features gentle waves with a dramatic splash of cobalt blue swept to the side in a cascade of color. 

                              8. Glam Waves

                              18 Coachella Hair Moments That Turned Heads
                              Image Source:@lucii_lba / Instagram

                              This hairstyle brings a touch of glamour to the Coachella scene. Its lush, flowing waves and face-framing tendrils are complemented by accent twists that add a playful yet sophisticated look.

                              Type 3 Curly Hair

                              9. Curly Peacock Palette

                              18 Coachella Hair Moments That Turned Heads
                              Image Source: @stayreddy / Instagram

                              A woman with shoulder-length curly hair captivated onlookers with her hair’s peacock-inspired palette, blending shades of blue and green highlights throughout her curls for a vibrant, mesmerizing effect.

                              10. Wavy Curly Sunset Spectrum

                              18 Coachella Hair Moments That Turned Heads
                              Image Source: @beautylaunchpad / Instagram

                              A woman with wavy curly hair past her shoulders turned heads at Coachella with a stunning gradient of colors: pink roots that transition seamlessly into shades of orange, yellow, green, blue, and finally purple at the ends, creating a vibrant, sunset-inspired look.

                              11. Festive Dual-Toned Buns

                              18 Coachella Hair Moments That Turned Heads
                              Image Source: @nicholerayartistry / Instagram

                              Check out this eye-catching Coachella hairstyle, featuring bouncy curls cascading down and two large buns intertwined with vibrant pink and green hues for a lively festival look.

                              12. Sunlit Bantu Tendrils

                              18 Coachella Hair Moments That Turned Heads
                              Image Source: @jaz.mcnew / Instagram

                              This look is playful and stylish. Soft medium brown highlights cascade through shoulder-length curls, complemented by two petite Bantu knots sitting charmingly at the front, framing the face with delicate tendrils to enhance the carefree vibe.

                              Type 4 Coily Hair

                              13. Natural Bloom Crown

                              18 Coachella Hair Moments That Turned Heads
                              Image Source: @naturalhairweekly/ @chocolatesparkle / Instagram

                              A radiant celebration of natural beauty, this hairstyle showcases the rich texture of type 4 coily hair, crowned with a halo of white flowers that provides a striking contrast against the deep, ebony coils.

                              14. Playful Petal Coils

                              18 Coachella Hair Moments That Turned Heads
                              Image Source: @neworleansnaturalhairexpo / Instagram

                              This hairstyle is a delightful expression of carefree elegance. It features luscious coily hair in its full glory, playfully accented with bright purple and yellow flowers that add a touch of whimsy to the voluminous, textured mane.

                              Mixed Hairstyles

                              15. Edgy Dreadlocks

                              18 Coachella Hair Moments That Turned Heads
                              Image Source: @jessicaxgolich / Instagram

                              This hairstyle is a bold and edgy statement. It features long, thick dreadlocks lifted high and paired with a bandana, creating an adventurous look as daring and free-spirited as the festival itself.

                              16. Festive Braid Waves

                              18 Coachella Hair Moments That Turned Heads
                              Image Source:  @leesiepinto / Instagram

                              Effortlessly chic, this hairstyle features long, slender braids that flow like a cascade, their sleek texture embodying the spirit of Coachella’s laid-back yet stylish vibe.

                              17. Festival Chic Twists

                              18 Coachella Hair Moments That Turned Heads
                              Image Source @hallebailey / Instagram

                              This captivating hairstyle by Halle Bailey features twists pulled to the side and back. It combines the elegance of neat, protective twists with the relaxed, free-flowing vibe of loose ends, making it a stylish and practical choice for the festival event.

                              18. Blue Infusion Knotless Braids

                              18 Coachella Hair Moments That Turned Heads
                              Image Source: @cityofindianwells / @laisribeiro / Instagram

                              This mesmerizing array of knotless braids falls effortlessly, each adorned with striking blue embellishments, creating a regal and modern expression of Coachella hair artistry.

                              Conclusion: Celebrating the Crowning Glories of Coachella

                              As the final chords of Coachella’s resounding lineup fade into the warm desert night, we carry more than just memories of the music and the art; we take inspiration from the festival’s tapestry of bold and inventive hairstyles. 

                              From sleek Type 1 locks catching the sunlight to Type 4 coils adorned with the valley’s flowers, Coachella’s hair moments are as much a part of the festival’s identity as the iconic palm trees that frame its horizon. It’s a place where hair isn’t just a style but a statement—a canvas for personal expression that defies norms and transcends boundaries. 

                              As we bid farewell to another year, the hairstyles of Coachella serve as a potent reminder that creativity knows no bounds and that beauty is a constantly evolving masterpiece that we each have the power to shape and redefine. 

                              Until the gates open again, let these 18 head-turning hair moments inspire us to dream a little bolder, dare a little bigger, and style with the full force of our individuality, using our hair as a tool for personal expression.

                              Top Black Natural Hair Salons Specializing in Natural Hair

                              Anyone in a salon chair knows it can be difficult to find Black natural hair stylists and salons. Effectively working with textured hair requires skill, dexterity, and a deep understanding of how to manipulate each texture best.

                              @itshif3licia

                              Do short layers intimidate you?? During my Texture Talks series I’ll be sharing some of my client consultations where we discuss hair history, desired results, current hair issues, and more! #nchairstylist #nccurlspecialist #charlottecurlspecialist #raleighhairstylist #raleighcurlyhairstylist #consultation #texturetalks #layeredhaircut #curlyhaircut

                              ♬ Cumbia Buena – Grupo La Cumbia
                              Image Source: @itshif3licia

                              The problem is that there are a disproportionately low number of professional stylists who understand how to work across all hair types—and, more specifically, the intricacies of Black hair—which means people with natural textures are often left out of the conversation. Most stylists outside of the Black community have little to no education about Black hair. 

                              The bigger issue is that many stylists are not taught to work with and appreciate curly hair, let alone coily, or kinky hair types. We’re often left to deal with the lack of education and salon service around natural hair, and on top of that, we might find ourselves in a situation where we’re left feeling demeaned and belittled at the hands of a stylist trying to put all textures into one box and method.

                              Image Source: @frizzandfrillzz

                              After being frustrated that hair school curriculums weren’t adequately training stylists on natural hair, Aisha Gatlin, who founded the Beautiful Luxe School of Cosmetology, said “Stylists are educated in pretty much one hair type because they don’t need to know more for their state exam—but when they get into the salon, it’s like they’re back in beauty school again.” Only 19 states require specific training for it.

                              The focus should not be on passing the state exam but on truly leaving with the knowledge to manage all hair types. Without the foundation of what constitutes healthy hair for a range of textures, stylists aren’t equipped with the full scope of knowledge they need to help their clients. More educators who are well-versed in all hair textures are needed. 

                              With all that being said, I’m sharing Black natural hair stylists and salons to follow and support in this article. To celebrate the work of the talented and underrepresented Black hair artists, you can start by supporting their work on social media.

                              The Daze Studio

                              Location: San Diego, CA

                              Top Black Natural Hair Salons Specializing in Natural Hair
                              Image Source: @thedazestudio

                              Daisy Henson, aka Curly Daze, owns The Daze Studio curly hair salon in San Diego, CA. Curly Daze is known for her beautifully shaped, transformative, curly cuts. She is also a hair educator for Cosmo Prof and was named Modern Salon’s Top 100 for 2020. 

                              Huetiful Hair Salon

                              Locations: Arlington, Dallas-Fort Worth, Austin, Chicago and Atlanta

                              Top Black Natural Hair Salons Specializing in Natural Hair
                              SOURCE: @HUETIFULSALON

                              Ken Burkeen, the creator of the Huetiful Hair Steamer, founded Huetiful. Ken’s mission is to introduce clients to “The 4 Healthy Hair Pillars” (cleansing, hydrating, conditioning, and strengthening).

                              They specialize particularly in helping women and men with hair transitions for chemically damaged hair.

                              Taji Salon

                              Location: Raleigh, NC

                              Top Black Natural Hair Salons Specializing in Natural Hair
                              Image Source: @TAJISALON

                              This salon specializes in natural hair styling and braiding. Taji has trained natural hair professionals who aim to help you reach your goals. While traveling and performing, Taji discovered that natural hair is an art form. Understanding the creative potential of our natural hair has always been a driving force for Taji.

                              Fifteen years ago, in the Triangle, when natural hair was not in vogue, Taji continued to pursue her dream of starting a natural hair movement in the area. She styles, cuts, and colors hair and holds workshops for those looking to learn more about their natural hair. 

                              Fabulocs Salon

                              Location: Capitol Heights, MD

                              Image Source: @fabulocsnaturalhair

                              Fabulocs is one of the most sought-after natural hair salons on the East Coast, specializing in kinky and coily textures. All their stylists are evaluated, tested, and trained to ensure their ability meets Fabulocs professional standards. Also, Fabulocs takes the time to ensure that their customers are educated about their natural hair too.

                              More Than Curly

                              Location: Aurora, CO

                              Top Black Natural Hair Salons Specializing in Natural Hair
                              Image Source: @MORETHANCURLY

                              More Than Curly is a natural and chemical-free salon that Melissa and Jason Vaz founded. They are stylists and strongly focus on teaching about curly hair. They also live by this creed: “We DO NOT perform Brazilian blowouts, Dominican, Keratin straightening treatments, or all-over relaxers.

                              Why? Most of our clients live in Colorado, a semi-arid environment, and costly services performed on natural hair will alter your curl pattern, dry out your hair, cause even more frizz, and require more product application to hydrate your hair.” They’ve been featured as an ELLE Magazine Top 100 Salon. 

                              Hair Rules

                              Location: Manhattan, NY with pop-ups in LA

                              Image Source: @heatherdollandtaman

                              The Texture Guru Anthony Dickey founded Hair Rules. He carried with him a dream of celebrating all textures and the knowledge of how to do it for decades. In 2003, Dickey shared his knowledge and wrote his first book, Hair Rules! The Ultimate Hair Care Guide for Women with Kinky, Curly, or Wavy Hair. This extensive guide of texture talk, tips, and tricks was the first step toward educating all textures on the beauty of their natural hair. He’s been educating curlies ever since! 

                              A Natural Affair

                              Top Black Natural Hair Salons Specializing in Natural Hair
                              SOURCE: @ANATURALAFFAIR1

                              Location: Jackson, TN

                              Takeisha Berry-Brooks of A Natural Affair is a pioneering hair care specialist, stylist, and beauty expert with more than 15 years of experience caring for clients with chemically processed and natural hair. Essence Magazine has recognized Takeisha as one of the’ 25 Most Beautiful and Inspiring Black Women in the World,’ and A Natural Affair Salon was named one of the Essence Top 30 Salons in the US.

                              Diaspora Salon

                              Location: Baltimore, MD

                              Top Black Natural Hair Salons Specializing in Natural Hair
                              Image Source: @DIASPORASALON

                              Diaspora Salon was founded by Yasmine Young, a Level 3 Master Deva Certified Stylist. Her mission for Diaspora Salon is to focus on “the preservation and continuance of various Diasporic cultures and heritages outside of Africa through hairdressing.” They specialize in 100% naturally curly and coily hair, curl discovery, advanced curly hair cuts, DevaCuts, advanced color services, holistic hair care, protective styling, and professional and consumer education.

                              LunaBella Makeup & Hair Salon

                              Location: Santa Barbara, CA

                              Top Black Natural Hair Salons Specializing in Natural Hair
                              Image Source: @curlfactor

                              LunaBella Makeup & Hair Salon in Santa Barbara, CA, was co-founded by Christin Brown, aka Curlfactor. She is a Level 3 Master Deva Certified Curl Specialist specializing in transformative Deva Cuts and Pintura color. She has styled the natural hair of Yara Shahidi and Tamera Mawrey, and she loves educating her clients on making their curls pop. 

                              Have you visited any of these salons? Let us know in the comments!

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              As the calendar turns and the promise of spring renews our spirits, the Sephora Savings Event emerges as the pinnacle of beauty enthusiasts’ excitement. This is not just a sale; it’s a curated journey through high-quality haircare, innovative tools, and groundbreaking skincare. Imagine a world where the best in beauty converges, offering treasures that revolutionize your routine and elevate your self-care to an art form.

                              Yet, the Sephora Savings Event is more than just a sale; it’s an exclusive gathering under the banner of beauty, where the only ticket required is seizing this chance to take advantage of remarkable discounts.
                              We have carefully curated a selection of 25 essential beauty picks. These are not just products; they are gateways to new realms of beauty.

                              From game-changing haircare that caters to every hair texture type to tools that redefine precision and skincare formulations that cater to your skin’s deepest needs—this is your opportunity to embrace the transformation that awaits.

                              1. Briogeo Scalp Revival Soothing Solutions Set

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              Kicking off our selection is a godsend for anyone grappling with an oily, itchy, or dry scalp: the Briogeo Scalp Revival Soothing Solutions Value Set. This meticulously curated collection alleviates discomfort and lays the foundation for healthy hair growth.

                              It does so by marrying the detoxifying capabilities of Binchotan charcoal with the soothing trio of tea tree, peppermint, and spearmint oils and the hair-fortifying powers of panthenol and biotin, ensuring it meets the needs of various hair types and textures.

                              2.  Bread Beauty Supply Hair-Foam

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              Next in our lineup is the Bread Beauty Supply Hair-Foam: a curling mousse that transcends typical styling solutions. Designed for wavy to coily hair of all textures, this mousse delivers a soft to medium hold, free from stickiness or crunchiness.

                              More than a styling product, it repairs keratin fibers and shields hair from humidity with TeraBond™ technology, probiotic ferment, and amino acids, transforming it into a holistic enhancer for hair health and style.

                              3.   PATTERN by Tracee Ellis Ross Curl Cocktail Hair Set

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              Traveling essential alert: the PATTERN by Tracee Ellis Ross Curl Cocktail Hair Set ensures your curls look their best, no matter where you are. This compact kit is tailored for wavy to coily hair and includes mini versions of the brand’s top products.

                              It’s perfect for enhancing ponytails, puffs, wash-and-go curls, or touch-ups on protective styles. It’s an indispensable ally for maintaining beautiful, vibrant curls on the move, even for color-treated hair.

                              4.  Sunday II Sunday Revive Me Daily Moisturizer

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              This product is perfect for those with medium to thick hair textures seeking effortless styling and care. It seamlessly combines the benefits of a leave-in conditioner with a texturizing spray. Ideal for wavy, curly, and coily hair, this innovative formula revives curls, fights frizz, hydrates, and brings calm to dry itchy scalps.

                              Key ingredients like Bio-Marine Active to reduce scalp irritation, Himalayan Mushroom Complex to reduce redness and flakiness, and argan oil for cuticle nourishment and shine are indispensable solutions for vibrant, healthy hair.

                              5. Melanin Haircare Signature Line Hair Travel Kit

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              This is a comprehensive solution for on-the-go styling. It features four travel-sized products, perfect for all hair types and textures. This kit addresses dryness, styling hold, and scalp build-up, all packaged in an exclusive waterproof-lined canvas bag for ultimate convenience and style.

                              6. Verb Ghost Dry Conditioner

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              The Verb Ghost Dry Conditioner is a must-have for anyone looking to keep their hair salon fresh. It offers a lightweight conditioning oil that extends blowouts, detangles, and boosts shine. Ideal for straight, wavy, and curly hair types that are fine to medium, it combats dryness and frizz with the help of nourishing moringa oil, refreshing hair and adding a silky-smooth finish.

                              7. Vegamour GRO Revitalizing Shampoo and Conditioner Set 

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              Continuing with our top picks, this shampoo and conditioner set stands out for its unique blend of vegan b-silk™ protein, designed to restore and protect hair and enhance its texture with an incredible shine and smoothness.

                              Suitable for all hair types, this color-safe duo tackles thinning, volumizing, and damage repair. It features microencapsulated phytoactives and Karmatin™ for visibly thicker hair and strengthened cuticles, while a rich mix of marula, baobab, and murumuru butter ensures hydration and protection against free radicals.

                              8. COLOR WOW Mini Dream Coat Supernatural Spray

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              As we delve further into our curated beauty selections, the COLOR WOW Mini Dream Coat Supernatural Spray emerges as a revolutionary solution for anyone battling frizz.

                              This transformative spray works wonders on straight, wavy, and curly hair, offering up to three to four shampoos’ worth of silky, glass-like smoothness and unmatched frizz control, thanks to its anti-humidity complex, chamomilla extract for color protection, and glycerin for added moisture and shine.

                              9. Ouai Treatment Mask

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              Next, the Ouai Treatment Mask is a must-have for deeply nourishing and rejuvenating fine or medium hair textures. Infused with shea butter, panthenol, and hydrolyzed keratin, this mask tackles dryness, frizz, and damage by hydrating, strengthening, and adding a luminous shine. It ensures your hair emerges healthier and more resilient against breakage.

                              10. Curlsmith Mini Bestsellers Hair Set for Curly Hair

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              For those with curly, coily, or wavy hair, the Curlsmith Mini Bestsellers Hair Set offers a perfect introduction to a range of haircare essentials designed to enhance and define natural curls. This trial kit includes four of Curlsmith’s most beloved products, packed with nourishing ingredients like Babassu Oil for moisture and shine, Flax Seed Extracts for improved elasticity, and Abyssinian Oil for protection against environmental stressors, making it an ideal choice for taming frizz, ensuring hold, and safeguarding against heat and UV damage.

                              11. dae Fairy Duster Volumizing Dry Shampoo Powder

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              The dae Fairy Duster Volumizing Dry Shampoo Powder is a game-changer for anyone looking to refresh their style and add volume without using aerosols. This talc-free, transparent powder is perfect for all hair types, absorbing excess oil and boosting the body with a warm citrus scent.

                              Key ingredients like Mojave yucca, prickly pear seed oil, and cactus flower extract work together to balance the scalp, nourish hair, and enhance manageability, making it essential for extending the life of your style between washes.

                              12.  Nécessaire The Hair Essentials – Trial + Travel Set

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              This travel set introduces a trio of scalp-nurturing products to address concerns like dryness, thinning, and scalp flakiness across all hair types. This set, featuring a blend of clinically effective ingredients including a Biomimetic Peptide Blend, Hyaluronic Acid, Niacinamide, and Panthenol, promises to hydrate, soothe, and restore hair to a visibly thicker, fuller, and healthier state, making it an essential travel companion for those seeking to maintain scalp health on the go.

                              13. Amika Perk Up Talc-Free Dry Shampoo

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              Amika’s reputation for creating standout dry shampoos is well-earned, which is why the Perk Up Talc-Free Dry Shampoo is a must-include on our list. It is known for its ability to absorb oil and instantly refresh hair without leaving any white residue; this product is suitable for all hair types and textures. It restores your hair’s natural volume and ensures your color stays vibrant, making it an indispensable part of your hair care routine.

                              14. Morrocanoil Mini Frizz Shield Spray

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              Continuing with hair essentials, the Moroccanoil Mini Frizz Shield Spray is a timely addition as the days grow warmer and humidity rises. This mist keeps frizz, the eternal curly hair foe, in check, while HydroResist Technology and nourishing argan oil ensure a shiny, manageable mane protected from thermal damage.

                              15. Dyson Limited Edition Supersonic Hair Dryer 

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              Shifting our focus to hair tools, the Dyson Limited Edition Supersonic Hair Dryer offers a high-tech approach to haircare. With a suite of magnetic attachments tailored for all hair types and textures and intelligent heat control to protect hair from heat damage, it’s engineered for fast, controlled styling and a flawless finish.

                              16. Shark Beauty Shark® SpeedStyle™ RapidGloss™ Finisher and High-Velocity Hair Dryer 

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              For those with curly and coily hair, this Shark hair dryer stands out as a powerhouse in efficient and protective styling. It harnesses high-velocity airflow to rapidly transition hair from wet to dry with a silky, high-gloss finish, ensuring no heat damage and leaving curls enhanced and frizz-free.

                              17. Fable & Mane Scalp Massager Comb

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              As we continue exploring hair tools that nurture and style, the Fable & Mane Scalp Massager Comb stands out for its dual functionality. This eco-friendly comb gently detangles all hair types and offers a soothing scalp massage to promote strong, healthy hair growth and increased circulation.

                              18. Slip Silk Pillowcase

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              Every curly knows the transformative power of a good silk pillowcase, and the Slip Silk Pillowcase—Standard/Queen is the secret weapon for maintaining bouncy curls and radiant skin. Made of the highest-grade mulberry silk, it minimizes bedhead, prevents sleep creases, and ensures skin and hair retain natural moisture and products. Thus, it is a luxurious and essential element for the beauty-conscious sleeper.

                              19. Crown Affair Hair Towel

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              The towel is an innovative solution to reduce drying time while protecting your hair from the frizz and breakage of traditional terry towels. Its secret sauce is its custom waffle fabric and unique design, which cater to all hair types. This promotes smoother, healthier hair and transforms your post-shower routine into a damage-minimizing ritual.

                              20. Drybar Hair Clips

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              Drybar’s Hair Clips are the overlooked home styling essential. With their alligator jaw design, these clips securely section off wet and dry hair without slipping, ensuring a seamless styling experience without tugging or leaving any dents.

                              21. Brown Girl Jane Discovery Set

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              If you’re new to the world of Brown Girl Jane’s fine fragrances, their discovery set offers a perfect introduction. Sampling six of their bestsellers, including Bahia, Casablanca, Lamu, Dawn, Dusk, and Dare, provides a unique opportunity to explore and layer scents crafted with technology designed to evoke emotion and celebrate heritage and artistry.

                              22. OUI the People Featherweight Hydrating Body Gloss Oil with Squalane

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              Diving into our additional beauty highlights, the Oui the People Featherweight Hydrating Body Gloss Oil with Squalane offers a novel approach to skin hydration, merging the rich moisture of an oil with the quick absorbency of a serum.

                              This blend, enriched with squalane, rosehip seed oil, and organic avocado oil, promises softer, firmer skin, available in the refreshing orange blossom scent or fragrance-free, catering to every skin type’s needs and organic avocado oil, ensuring your skin remains soft, firm, and increasingly capable of retaining moisture with every application.

                              23. Topicals Faded Under Eye Brightening & Clearing Eye Masks

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              Continuing with our curated beauty finds, the Topicals Faded Under Eye Brightening & Clearing Eye Masks are a soothing solution for anyone looking to diminish dark circles and discoloration. These cooling hydrogel masks, suitable for all skin types, leverage caffeine, kojic acid, and arbutin to invigorate and even out the under-eye area while adhering to vegan, gluten-free, and cruelty-free standards.

                              24. Fenty Skin Cookies N Clean Detox Face Mask 

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              Just as curly hair benefits from a clarifying shampoo to rejuvenate and cleanse, our skin requires a deep detox, and the Fenty Skin Cookies N Clean Whipped Clay Pore Detox Face Mask with Salicylic Acid + Charcoal is the perfect solution.

                              This non-drying, whipped clay mask purifies pores. It combats oiliness thanks to its potent blend of clay, charcoal, and salicylic acid, ensuring your skin’s texture is visibly improved and shine-free throughout the day.

                              25. Drunk Elephant Call It A Night Glycolic Serum + Moisturizer Duo

                              Your Haircare Must-Haves During The Sephora Savings Event

                              For an evening skincare routine that mirrors the rejuvenating effects of a good night’s rest, the Drunk Elephant Call It A Night Glycolic Serum + Moisturizer duo is a standout. This essential set, offering a visibly refining glycolic serum to exfoliate dead skin paired with a deeply hydrating whipped cream moisturizer, is the perfect ‘nightcap’ for your skin, suitable for all types and addressing concerns like fine lines, dryness, and uneven texture with vegan and cruelty-free formulations.

                              Wrap-Up: Essential Beauty Picks: From Scalp Care to Skincare

                              In wrapping up our deep dive into the Sephora Savings Event, we’ve curated an exclusive collection of beauty essentials, weaving together the finest in curly hair care, styling tools, and groundbreaking skincare.

                              From Briogeo’s scalp-reviving formulas to Drunk Elephant’s nighttime indulgence, each selection is crafted to elevate your beauty routine comprehensively, addressing diverse hair and skin concerns. This assembled guide is your gateway to a season filled with beauty renewal, presenting a holistic view of indispensable products poised to transform your regimen.

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves

                              Mastering the art of diffusing can make all the difference in hair care. This comprehensive guide is your go-to for everything from understanding your hair’s basic needs to mastering diffusing techniques tailored for fine hair, curls, coils, and waves. Whether you’re aiming to enhance your natural texture or looking for ways to minimize frizz, the right approach to diffusing can elevate your hair game.

                              Type 1 (Straight)

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves
                              Image Source: @jadeswayves
                              • Characteristics: This hair type ranges from pin-straight (1A) to straight with a bit more body (1B) and slight bends (1C). It’s known for its glossy shine and smooth texture.
                              • Needs: While Type 1 hair can effortlessly achieve a sleek look, it may need help with volume and quickly become oily. Lightweight volumizing products and occasional clarifying treatments can combat these issues, ensuring the hair remains lively and fresh.

                              Type 2 (Wavy)

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves
                              Image Source: @wavycurlyasian
                              • Characteristics: Type 2 hair weaves between straight and curly, embodying loose, tousled waves (2A) to more defined S-shaped waves (2B) and ending with pronounced, almost curly waves (2C).
                              • Needs: Wavy hair is prone to frizz and may lack definition. Hydration is vital, but so is avoiding heavy products that can weigh down waves. Light mousses or gel-based products can enhance texture without sacrificing volume, helping to define and control frizz.

                              Type 3 (Curly)

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves
                              Image Source: @curly_barbie
                              • Characteristics: From loose, bouncy curls (3A) to tighter spirals (3B) and densely packed corkscrews (3C), Type 3 hair is full of volume and personality.
                              • Needs: Moisture is non-negotiable for curly hair, which tends to be drier and more prone to frizz than straighter types. Deep conditioning treatments, leave-in conditioners, and curl-defining creams help maintain curl shape and health, providing hydration and reducing frizz.

                              Type 4 (Coily)

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves
                              Image Source: UK.Curlsmith

                              Characteristics: Type 4 hair features tightly coiled curls in a zigzag pattern (4A), very tight, almost crinkly coils (4B), and tightly kinked hair with less visible curl definition (4C). This hair type exhibits the most shrinkage and is incredibly delicate.

                              • Needs: Coily hair demands significant moisture and protective styling to prevent breakage and maintain hair health. Rich conditioners, butter, and oils keep strands hydrated and flexible. Gentle handling and minimal manipulation are crucial to protect its fragile nature.

                              Recognizing your hair type’s unique characteristics and needs, you can adopt a hair care routine that addresses common concerns and enhances your hair’s natural texture.

                              The Art of Diffusing

                              What is Diffusing? A diffuser attachment disperses the airflow of a hairdryer, allowing for a gentle, even distribution of heat. This technique reduces frizz, enhances natural texture, and can be a gentler drying option for all hair types.

                              Why Diffuse? Beyond reducing frizz, diffusing can help shape and define waves, curls, and coils. It offers a more controlled drying process that respects your hair’s natural texture. It’s particularly beneficial for hair prone to dryness or damage, as it minimizes direct heat exposure.

                              Tailored Diffusing Techniques and Product Recommendations

                              Here, we delve into the specifics of Wavy (Type 2), Curly (Type 3), and Coily (Type 4) hair types, providing focused product recommendations and detailed application instructions to help you achieve optimal results.

                              For Wavy Hair (Type 2)

                              https://www.tiktok.com/@sophiemariegraf/video/7224901879992454443
                              Reel Source: @sophiemariegraf  / TikTok

                              Product Recommendations:

                              Bumble & Bumble Hairdresser’s Invisible Oil Heat/UV Protective Primer

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves

                              A lightweight primer that shields hair from heat and UV damage while minimizing frizz.

                              Herbal Essence Totally Twisted Cur-Boosting Mousse

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves

                              Helps boost and define without heaviness, enhancing the natural texture of wavy hair.

                              Kinky Curly Curling Custard

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves

                              Defines and holds waves without creating stiffness, ensuring waves are bouncy and full of life.

                              Ouidad Mongongo Oil

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves

                              Locks in moisture and adds shine.

                              Application & Diffusing Instructions:

                              1. Start with the plopping technique after applying your styling products. This involves wrapping your wet, product-coated hair in a cotton T-shirt or microfiber towel. Plopping helps set your waves’ pattern and removes excess moisture, reducing drying time and heat exposure.

                              2. For added root volume, insert duckbill clips at the roots. This creates lift and volume at the base of your waves, enhancing your hairstyle’s overall shape and body.

                              3. Begin diffusing with your head upright, then alternate tilting it to each side to ensure even drying and volume distribution. Avoid flipping your head upside down if volume is not your primary goal, as this can overly stretch your roots upward.

                              4. Focus the diffuser on the roots and mid-lengths rather than the ends, which are your hair’s oldest and most fragile parts. This approach helps prevent damage and breakage.

                              5. Opt for a higher heat setting for quicker drying, but avoid overdoing it. Balance quicker drying times with the health of your hair.

                              6. Finish with a cool shot from your dryer to seal the hair cuticle, enhance shine, and reduce frizz.

                              7. Apply oil as your finishing product to add moisture and shine. Dispense two pumps into your hands, rub them together, and then gently scrunch the oil into the ends of your waves to seal in moisture and add a glossy finish.

                              For Curly Hair (Type 3)

                              Reel Source: @ovegancurls / TikTok

                              Product Recommendations:

                              Curls Blueberry Bliss Reparative Leave-In Conditioner

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves

                              Infuses moisture and strength, essential for maintaining healthy curls.

                              Curls Blueberry Bliss Curl Control Jelly

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves

                              Keep curls frizz-free and defined throughout the day.

                              Olaplex No. 7 Bonding Oil

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves

                              Boosts shine, adds softness, and controls frizz.

                              Application & Diffusing Instructions:

                              1. Product Application: After showering, generously apply the leave-in conditioner to wet hair. Add a layer of curl-enhancing gel and scrunching to encourage curl formation.
                              2. Diffusing: Attach the diffuser, set it to a medium temperature, and gently cup sections of your curls, lifting them towards the scalp. This method reduces frizz and helps define your curls without excess manipulation.
                              3. Finishing: Continue diffusing until your curls are mostly dry, then switch to cool air to set your style. For extra shine, scrunch a small amount of lightweight oil into the ends of your curls.

                              For Coily Hair (Type 4)

                              Reel Source: @culturallycoiled / TikTok

                              Product Recommendations:

                              Pattern Beauty by Tracee Ellis Ross Leave-In Conditioner

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves

                              Deeply hydrates and detangles, preparing coily hair for styling.

                              EDEN BodyWorks Coconut Shea Curl Defining Crème

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves

                              This is for added definition and frizz control.

                              Camille Rose Curl Maker

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves

                              Enhances the natural pattern of coils with moisture and definition.

                              Application & Diffusing Instructions:

                              1. Product Application: On freshly washed and detangled hair, layer the leave-in conditioner followed by the styling cream and gel. Work the products through with your fingers to ensure even distribution.
                              2. Diffusing: Using a low heat setting, hover the diffuser around your head, starting at the roots. This gentle approach helps to dry your hair without disrupting the natural coil pattern or causing shrinkage.

                              Alternative Diffusing Method:

                              1. Stretch diffusing can be effective for those seeking to elongate their coils or reduce shrinkage. After applying your leave-in and styling products:
                              2. Gently stretch a section of your hair with one hand while aiming the diffuser at this stretched section with the other. This method applies direct heat to elongate the hair temporarily.
                              3. Rotate through all sections of your hair, ensuring each is evenly dried. This technique is beneficial for achieving a more extended look or for styles that require stretched hair as a foundation.
                              4. Finishing: Once your hair reaches about 80% dryness, use either diffusing method or let it air dry thoroughly. This approach helps to lock in moisture, ensuring your coils remain hydrated and defined.
                              5. To add volume and finalize your style, gently fluff the roots with your fingers or a hair pick. Doing this gently avoids frizz and maintains the definition of your coils.

                              By following these tailored recommendations and techniques, you can enhance your hair’s natural beauty and texture, whether it’s wavy, curly, or coily. Product application and diffusing techniques are key to achieving frizz-free, defined, and healthy-looking hair.

                              Choosing the Right Diffuser

                              Selecting the appropriate diffuser is critical in tailoring your hair care routine to match your hair’s specific needs. Each diffuser is designed with unique features that cater to different hair types, textures, and styling preferences. Understanding the nuances of each can help you achieve the best results, enhancing your natural texture while minimizing damage and frizz. Below is an expanded guide on choosing the suitable diffuser for your hair type:

                              Shark FlexStyle Curl-Defining Diffuser

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves

                              This is uniquely versatile and suitable for all hair types. Its retractable prongs adjust to accommodate your hair’s length and density, ensuring even airflow distribution. Ideal for Types 3 and 4, it enhances curl definition and volume without disturbing the natural curl pattern.

                              Pattern Blow Dryer by Tracee Ellis Ross

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves

                              This blow dryer is specially designed for those with curls and coils and comes with attachments tailored for textured hair. Its wide diffuser attachment distributes heat evenly, allowing for the gentle drying of large sections of hair at once. This reduces drying time and helps maintain the integrity of each curl, making it perfect for Types 3 and 4 hair.

                              Xtava Black Orchid Hair Diffuser

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves

                              With its vast bowl and advanced 360-degree airflow, the Xtava Black Orchid diffuser excels in handling thick, dense hair. It targets curls deeply, from the roots to the tips, promoting faster drying times while reducing frizz and enhancing curl definition. It’s particularly beneficial for those with Type 2C, Type 3, and Type 4 hair textures.

                              Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves

                              Renowned for its innovative design, the Dyson Supersonic offers precise control over heat and airflow, making it a versatile tool for all hair types. The diffuser attachment is engineered to simulate natural drying, reduce frizz, and help define curls and waves. Its gentle yet effective drying makes it suitable for Type 2 and Type 3 hair.

                              YS Park Ion Diffuser

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves

                              Ideal for finer hair textures (Types 1 and 2), this diffuser uses ionic technology to reduce static and smooth hair cuticles, enhancing shine and volume. Its unique design allows for targeted airflow that adds volume at the roots without over-drying the ends.

                              Hairizone Universal Hair Diffuser

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves

                              This adaptable diffuser fits a wide range of hair dryers, making it a versatile choice for any hair type. It’s particularly effective for Type 2 and Type 3 hair, providing even airflow that helps to define curls and waves without causing frizz.

                              DevaCurl DevaFuser

                              Diffusing 101 For Fine Hair, Curls, Coils, and Waves

                              The innovative hand-shaped design of the DevaFuser offers 360-degree airflow to surround curls from the roots to the ends for faster drying times. It’s especially suited for Type 2C through Type 4 hair, lifting and drying curls gently to enhance the natural curl pattern and volume.

                              Each diffuser offers something unique, from enhancing natural curls to adding volume and shine to straight hair. By selecting a diffuser that aligns with your hair type and styling goals, you can ensure that your hair looks its best and is treated with the care it deserves.

                              Conclusion

                              Diffusing is a transformative technique in hair care, especially for enhancing natural textures while mitigating frizz. You can unlock your hair’s full potential by understanding your hair type, selecting appropriate products, and utilizing the proper diffusing techniques. Remember, the essence of successful diffusing lies in gently handling your locks and patience during the drying process. Embrace your hair’s natural beauty and let it flourish.

                              The Inspiring Journey of Julissa Prado and Rizos Curls

                              Before Rizos Curls became a beacon for the curly hair community, it was the dream of Julissa Prado, a visionary entrepreneur with a deep connection to her roots and an unwavering commitment to empowering those with natural curls. 

                              Born from a personal quest to embrace her natural hair texture, Prado’s journey with Rizos Curls transcends the creation of a beauty brand; it’s a story of community, culture, and the unyielding spirit of a woman who dared to dream big. 

                              In this series, we delve into the essence of Rizos Curls, exploring its growth, challenges, and the powerful bond it has forged with its audience. 

                              Foundational Vision and Inspiration

                              The Inspiring Journey of Julissa Prado and Rizos Curls
                              Image Source: @rizoscurls

                              At the heart of Rizos Curls lies Julissa Prado’s journey with her curls—a journey that began with a desire to love and understand her natural hair texture. Born and bred in Los Angeles’s vibrant cultural tapestry, Prado’s entrepreneurial spirit was ignited early on, inspired by her surroundings and a familial legacy of beauty and hustle.

                              Creating Rizos Curls wasn’t just about finding the right products; it was about creating something that didn’t exist and could celebrate the beauty of all curl types. Prado’s mission was clear: to empower curly-haired individuals by providing them with quality products that embrace and enhance their natural beauty.

                              Image Source: @rizoscurls

                              Her passion for hair, combined with the lack of products catering to her unique curly texture, set her on a path of innovation. Prado recalls, “My personal curl journey to learn how to love my natural texture inspired me to create Rizos Curls.”

                              This statement captures the essence of Rizos Curls’ mission: to empower individuals to embrace their natural beauty. Prado’s journey from mixing homemade concoctions to launching a brand that celebrates all curl types reflects a deep commitment to inclusion and quality, laying the groundwork for a community-centered beauty empire.

                              This vision came to fruition in 2017 when Prado launched Rizos Curls, a line that quickly garnered attention for its quality ingredients and inclusive approach to curly hair care. Today, Rizos Curls stands proud with over 15 SKUs, many of which are award-winning, and has established itself as a leader in the natural hair space.

                              From Challenges to Triumphs: Building the Brand

                              The Inspiring Journey of Julissa Prado and Rizos Curls

                              Transitioning from vision to reality wasn’t without its challenges. As a self-funded, women-owned, and Latinx-founded company, Rizos Curls grappled with the perennial startup challenge of limited marketing funds. Prado’s approach to overcoming these obstacles was rooted in creativity and resilience. “From the beginning, the biggest challenge was having additional cash for marketing activities. As a completely self-funded company, I lead my mindset with ‘makeup in creativity what you lack in marketing dollars.’ True creativity isn’t curating a campaign with large teams and budgets. It’s creating something out of nothing.”

                              Image Source: @rizoscurls

                              “Being scrappy, yet visionary,” she highlights, “reaping benefits through hard work and motivation” became her mantra. This philosophy steered the brand through its early days and paved the way for its growth. Prado’s determination to stay true to Rizos Curls’ mission and a strategic focus on community engagement and product diversification underscored a journey from humble beginnings to a celebrated brand with a significant presence in retail giants like ULTA Beauty and Target.

                              Prado’s resourcefulness and innovative approach enabled Rizos Curls to connect with its audience deeper, overcome obstacles, and achieve growth and success.

                              Cultivating Connection and Innovation

                              The Inspiring Journey of Julissa Prado and Rizos Curls
                              Image Source: @rizoscurls

                              As Rizos Curls grew, its active presence on social media platforms such as TikTok and Instagram enabled the brand to connect with a broad audience. By sharing valuable content and nurturing a welcoming space for those with curly hair, the brand solidified its identity and refined its product offerings based on community feedback.

                              @rizoscurlshair

                              Come with us to Prom Day 2024! Thank you so much to Assistance League of Los Angeles for letting us be a part of it ✨ #assistanceleague #alpromday #promday #giveback #prom#prom2024

                              ♬ original sound – Rizos Curls
                              Image Source: @rizoscurlshair

                              Prado’s approach to creating products centers around utilizing clean, premium ingredients, showcasing her dedication to enhancing the health and beauty of diverse curl types. ” Our philosophy for product development is to focus on being a clean hair care line,” she explains, highlighting the brand’s commitment to delivering natural, efficient solutions.

                              The dialog between Prado and the Rizos Curls community has been fundamental in developing products that resonate with and meet the needs of a diverse customer base. This collaborative approach to innovation has fueled the brand’s expansion and solidified its position as a leader in the clean beauty movement for curly hair.

                              Empowering Communities and Shaping Futures

                              The Inspiring Journey of Julissa Prado and Rizos Curls

                              Beyond the curls, Rizos Curls has become a platform for empowerment and positive impact, mainly through initiatives like the Lift As You Climb Scholarship program. Prado shares heartfelt stories of transformation and community support, illustrating the brand’s influence beyond haircare: “Many of our customers… for the first time feel beautiful with their curly hair.”

                              These stories underscore the brand’s role in transforming not just haircare routines but lives by fostering self-love and community solidarity. Prado’s vision extends to nurturing the next generation through education and empowerment, reflecting Rizos Curls’ commitment to making a lasting difference in its community’s lives.

                              Influence and Impact

                              The Inspiring Journey of Julissa Prado and Rizos Curls
                              Image Source: @rizoscurls

                              Rizos Curls has significantly impacted individuals and communities, transforming how people view and care for their natural curls. Prado shares touching stories of “undercover curlies” who, through Rizos Curls, have learned to embrace their natural beauty, highlighting the brand’s profound influence in the natural hair community.

                              “There have been so many stories that it’s so hard to pick just one! Many of our customers are what we call ‘undercover curlies,’ meaning they have naturally curly hair but have worn it straight their whole lives. They come to us and are finally ready to learn how to wear their natural hair.”

                              Visionary Advice for Aspiring Entrepreneurs

                              The Inspiring Journey of Julissa Prado and Rizos Curls
                              Reel Source: @rizoscurls / Instagram

                              Prado’s journey offers invaluable insights for aspiring entrepreneurs in the beauty and natural hair industry. Her foundational advice, “Make up in creativity what you lack in marketing dollars,” is not just a motto but a strategic approach that has guided her path to success. This philosophy emphasizes the significance of innovation, authenticity, and direct engagement with one’s community over the reliance on substantial marketing budgets.

                              Prado’s experience as a self-funded entrepreneur competing against industry giants showcases the importance of creativity in product development and business strategies. She encourages entrepreneurs, especially those from the Latinx community, to harness their unique perspectives and connections with their customer base.

                              By staying true to their vision and actively involving customers in the creative process, entrepreneurs can foster loyalty, inspire their audience, and carve out a distinctive market niche. Prado’s success with Rizos Curls—built on perseverance, inventive solutions, and a strong community connection—is a powerful example for others looking to make a lasting impact in the beauty industry.

                              Future Aspirations

                              The Inspiring Journey of Julissa Prado and Rizos Curls

                              Peering into the future, Julissa Prado envisions a dynamic expansion for Rizos Curls. She is charting a path of significant growth that not only broadens the product portfolio but also propels the brand into new global markets.

                              With a laser focus on celebrating and uplifting the natural hair community, Rizos Curls is set to introduce innovations to enhance hair and scalp health. Strategic partnerships with new retailers complement this initiative and a groundbreaking international campaign in Mexico designed to spotlight Afro-Mexican talent.

                              Prado’s vision for the future is clear: to continue celebrating and uplifting the natural hair community and ensure that Rizos Curls remains at the forefront of the industry.

                              Conclusion: Roots Laid, Future Unfolding

                              Image Source: @rizoscurls

                              Rizos Curls is a testament to the power of a vision rooted in personal experience, community engagement, and a commitment to clean, inclusive beauty. Julissa Prado’s journey from crafting homemade haircare solutions to leading a beauty empire exemplifies the transformative potential of passion, innovation, and a deep connection to one’s roots.

                              As Rizos Curls continues to grow and evolve, its foundational principles of embracing natural beauty, empowering communities, and fostering innovation will continue to inspire and shape the beauty industry’s future.

                              My Curly Hair Transformation: A Personal Journey Through Color

                              I’ve always believed that changing our hair color is one of the many ways we women express ourselves, showcasing our personality and current mood through the spectrum of colors we choose. My journey with my curly hair, filled with triumphs and setbacks, is a testament to this adventurous spirit. 

                              Starting with tentative blonde highlights, moving on to a boldly into the realm of reds, and eventually returning to my natural black, each phase of my hair color adventure has taught me invaluable lessons. It’s been a path of self-discovery, resilience, and developing a deeper connection with my curls. 

                              This narrative isn’t just about switching hues; it’s about embracing every aspect of our hair’s potential and the profound insights gained along the way. Along this colorful path, I’ve discovered hair products that have become essential allies, guiding me toward healthier, happier curls.

                              The Blonde Ambition

                              My Curly Hair Transformation: A Personal Journey Through Color

                              My curly hair journey began in 2016, motivated by the desire to heal my hair from the extensive damage caused by years of chemical treatments and heat styling. Determined to revive what was left of my hair, I embraced a healthier hair care regimen.

                              Just four months into this new journey, I couldn’t resist the temptation to add color to my hair. Aware of the potential risks coloring posed to my delicate curls, I sought a solution to minimize damage. This led me to discover Olaplex, a product known for preserving hair’s structural integrity during coloring. I made it a point to discuss using Olaplex with my stylist, emphasizing its importance in my hair treatment plan.

                              I committed to a rigorous routine to support my hair’s health further and ensure a positive outcome from the coloring process. This included weekly deep conditioning to moisturize and nourish my hair deeply and protein treatments designed to strengthen and repair any potential damage caused by coloring. Together, these steps formed a comprehensive strategy to achieve a successful hair transformation, balancing the desire for new hair color with the need to maintain healthy, resilient curls. By the following year, my efforts had paid off, and my hair’s health was fully restored, as seen in the photo below.

                              My Curly Hair Transformation: A Personal Journey Through Color

                              However, I hadn’t realized that my stylist planned to use a stronger bleach for this next step. This led to significant damage to my curls, making them brittle, prone to breakage, and excessively dry. Although the photo below captures the visible damage—noticeably stretched-out curls—it fails to convey the full extent of the dryness. My hair’s texture had deteriorated to the point where it felt like straw, devoid of moisture and elasticity, illustrating a cautionary tale about the potential risks of aggressive bleaching.

                              My Curly Hair Transformation: A Personal Journey Through Color

                              This challenging setback was undeniably devastating, yet it was a powerful catalyst for me to reevaluate and strengthen my approach to hair care. In response to the damage, I doubled my commitment to returning my hair to health. It was then time to upgrade my routine to include deep conditioning sessions twice weekly to replenish and hydrate my curls more intensely. I also maintained the regimen of regular protein treatments to rebuild and fortify my hair’s structure.

                              In my quest for solutions, I incorporated three essential products into my regimen with a fresh perspective. First, I began using Righteous Roots Oils as a pre-poo treatment. While this product wasn’t new to me, applying it before shampooing marked a novel and effective method in my routine. It provided my hair with essential nutrients and extra protection during washing.

                              Additionally, I discovered the Roux Porosity Control Corrector and Conditioner, which specifically targeted my hair’s extreme dryness by improving its ability to retain moisture. Lastly, I explored the traditional practice of rice water rinses, which are renowned for their hair-strengthening properties. Together, these steps were instrumental in reviving my curls (as seen in the photo below), demonstrating the importance of adaptability and targeted care in overcoming hair health obstacles.

                              This experience taught me the importance of clear communication with my hairstylist, highlighting how crucial it is to discuss and understand every product and technique used in my hair care process.

                              My Curly Hair Transformation: A Personal Journey Through Color

                              The Bold Move to Red

                              My Curly Hair Transformation: A Personal Journey Through Color

                              In 2019, the call for change whispered once more, guiding me toward the vibrant allure of red. The transition was smooth, with no initial damage to report. However, maintaining red hair proved to be its own labyrinth. Toner became my constant companion, though it was an inconsistent relationship. Despite my efforts, the red hues faded, never returning to their original luster.

                              Reel Source: @themestizamuse / Instagram

                              This chapter taught me the necessity of understanding the maintenance landscape before diving into a new color. Research became my beacon, guiding me through the complexities of red hair upkeep.

                              Return to Blonde and the Ultimate Price

                              Relocating to a new city led to a chance encounter at the gym with a woman whose blonde, curly hair was the vibrant shade I had been dreaming of. This serendipitous meeting reignited my desire for blonde highlights, prompting me to pursue that perfect shade again. Initially, I was thrilled with the results, but soon, I longed for a more consistent, all-over blonde look.

                              Motivated by the stunning blonde curls of a woman I met at the gym, I sought out her colorist to achieve a similar vibrant shade. The colorist proposed using distinct bleaching formulas to address my naturally black hair and the previously highlighted sections. The goal was to achieve a consistent, all-over blonde hue.

                              Unfortunately, this intricate plan resulted in significant and unforeseen negative consequences. A few months later, my hair began to fall out in large quantities, an alarming situation that proved resistant to my extensive care regimen. Despite my diligent use of protein treatments, deep conditioning, and K18 Leave-In Hair Treatment—a product I chose based on its clinical reputation for repairing bleach-damaged hair—it seemed my hair’s condition had deteriorated beyond the point of repair by these methods. This experience underscored that some damage might be too extensive for even the most highly recommended products to mitigate.

                              This unfortunate turn of events taught me a valuable lesson about the potential hazards of intensive chemical processing. It underscored the necessity of exercising caution and restraint in hair coloring endeavors. Additionally, I realized that I had overlooked my initial instincts about the colorist’s method for lightening my hair. Deep down, I sensed this approach might not suit my hair’s condition, so I proceeded. This served as a reminder of the importance of listening to one’s intuition, especially regarding decisions affecting our hair’s health. As it turned out, my hair was simply unprepared for such a drastic change.

                              Embracing Natural Black

                              My Curly Hair Transformation: A Personal Journey Through Color

                              Exhausted by the color carousel, I’ve returned to my roots—figuratively and literally. Transitioning to my natural black hair symbolizes a return to simplicity and health.

                              In the image, you can see the current state of my hair as I’m transitioning from blonde back to my natural black. The faded blonde ends are growing out, while my natural black color is reasserting itself from the roots. It’s a challenging process that doesn’t always look as graceful as I’d like, but I’m committed to avoiding the “big chop.” Instead, I’ve let the black curls grow longer and trim off the blonde ends when I’ve achieved a length that satisfies me. This phase of my hair journey may not be picture-perfect, but it reflects patience and my personal growth.

                              Now, on to the second aspect of my journey:

                              The transformation of my hair’s porosity from high to low has been an unexpected twist, prompting me to rethink my products. I’ve turned to a new lineup that includes Righteous Roots Leave-In Conditioner, Bounce Curl Leave-In Conditioner, and Jessicurl products, all of which have proven incredibly effective. These products have seamlessly integrated into my hair care routine, addressing the unique needs of my changing hair texture and porosity. It’s been like reconnecting with an old friend who has changed over time and relearning what they like and dislike. Adapting to these changes has not only improved the health of my curls but also deepened my understanding and appreciation for them as they evolve.

                              Product Recommendations Through the Journey

                              Throughout this journey, several products have stood out for their restorative and nurturing properties:

                              1. Olaplex No. 3: A beacon during my initial foray into blonde, safeguarding my hair’s integrity.

                              2. Righteous Roots Oils: A savior in the aftermath of over-bleaching, fostering recovery.

                              3. Roux Porosity Control Corrector and Conditioner: Key in managing my hair’s porosity post-damage.

                              4. Righteous Roots Leave-In ConditionerBounce Curl Leave-In Conditioner, and Jessicurl Products have become indispensable in my routine. Together, they create a powerhouse trio that deeply nourishes my natural curls. Each product serves a distinct purpose, addressing the specific needs and phases of my hair’s health journey. Together, they provide a well-rounded regimen that ensures my curls receive the holistic care and attention they deserve.

                              Lessons Learned

                              This journey has been more than just a series of color changes—it’s been a profound learning experience. My key takeaways have been the importance of gradual transitions, the necessity of ongoing communication with stylists, and the need for a tailored hair care regimen. Each color chapter has imparted wisdom, sometimes learned through hardship but always leading to growth.

                              Reflecting on this journey, it’s clear that the path to healthy, vibrant curls is both complex and rewarding. It requires patience, adaptability, and an unwavering commitment to understanding one’s hair. My story, punctuated by triumphs and tribulations, serves as a guide for those navigating the colorful world of curly hair. It reminds us that while the journey may be fraught with challenges, the destination—a head full of healthy, happy curls—is worth every step.

                              CURLDAZE Founder Robyn Atwater Talks Curls, Community, and Innovation

                              Step into the transformative journey of Robyn Atwater, the visionary behind CURLDAZE. With a background that might seem worlds apart from hair care, Robyn began her career as an Economist, delving into the intricate landscapes of national housing markets. Ingrained in her professional life, this pursuit of knowledge seamlessly transitioned into her journey.

                              It all started with an unexpected twist—Robyn began experiencing significant shedding and hair loss. What followed was a meticulous research journey into her condition and the world of hair care products. Discovering the need for a combination of solutions to address her concerns sparked a newfound passion for hair care.

                              In crafting her own hair growth oil, Robyn witnessed her hair revitalize, prompting her to share her journey on platforms like Instagram and YouTube. As she documented her experiences, a community began to form, with viewers seeking advice and sharing their struggles.

                              The flood of viewer questions and comments opened Robyn’s eyes to the unmet needs within the hair care industry. Determined to make a difference, she committed to fulfilling those needs. Extensive research led her to source the best ingredients, specifically tailored to nourish and strengthen natural curly hair, resulting in the birth of CURLDAZE.

                              Robyn’s journey, shaped by her commitment to addressing the concerns of her audience, has elevated CURLDAZE to a brand that goes beyond hair care—it’s a symbol of empowerment, strength, and beauty within the natural hair care community. Today, we sit down with Robyn to unravel the story of CURLDAZE and understand how this brand continues to play a vital role in transforming the narrative of natural hair care.

                              Brand Story and Ideation

                              CURLDAZE Founder Robyn Atwater Talks Curls, Community, and Innovation

                              What motivated CurlDaze to specifically focus on catering to individuals with curly hair, and how does the brand contribute to celebrating and embracing natural curls?

                              CURLDAZE specifically focused on curly hair because millions of other people (me included) have curly hair! In the questions and concerns people send me, I found that people struggle with styling and caring for curly hair. Hair thickness and curl pattern can make styling even more frustrating for people.

                              It’s so much easier to let someone else style your hair at a cost, pull it back in a bun or ponytail, get it braided, straighten it, or put on a wig. These are common options, but your natural hair care sometimes gets neglected. Hair begins to thin, break, and lose its natural luster because it lacks moisture. CURLDAZE products moisturize and protect the hair to prevent such damage.

                              In addition, natural hair always needs to be promoted as a sign of beauty, and CURLDAZE has given so many people that confidence. One day, I was in a group setting, celebrating something. I can’t remember what right now, but my mom introduced me to this lady who was “rocking her natural curls.”

                              My mom and I commented on how nice her hair looked. She told us about a product she was using and said, “All my life, all I ever wanted to do was wash my hair and go. Now I can, and I am so happy!” We asked what she was using, and she said, “CURLDAZE”.

                              Product Evolution

                              CURLDAZE Founder Robyn Atwater Talks Curls, Community, and Innovation

                              Can you describe the evolution of CurlDaze’s key products and highlight the unique qualities that set them apart in the market? 

                              During my days as an influencer, people would write in saying things like: “What’s causing my hair to break?”, “What can I use to soften my hair and make it shiny?” “I’m using this product that’s drying out my hair. Can you recommend something I can use to dry it?”

                              I researched what ingredients in some hair care products might cause this damage to the hair and decided not to use them in the products CURLDAZE would produce. Our products are sulfate, paraben, and silicone-free and infused with the amazing Kukui Oil, which has Vitamin A, C, and E to help promote healthier, shinier hair and repair and renew dry, damaged curls.

                              Innovative Ideation

                              CURLDAZE Founder Robyn Atwater Talks Curls, Community, and Innovation

                              How does CurlDaze approach the ideation process for developing new products? Are there specific considerations given to addressing diverse curl patterns and textures? 

                              As a researcher, I learned to pay attention to data because it provides a clear picture. Feedback from customers drives the development of new products. We emphasize that whatever the curl pattern or texture, the health of the hair will enhance its beauty. CURLDAZE listens to the people.

                              Community Connection

                              Image Source: @curldazehaircare

                              CurlDaze has gained prominence within the natural hair community. How does the brand actively engage with its audience, and how does community feedback shape product development? 

                              As mentioned in previous responses, listening and responding to our customers is crucial to our success. In addition to our marketing efforts via email campaigns and other marketing strategies, we donate samples of our products to community events.

                              We have issued scholarships to deserving students during college events. We donated time and money to a non-profit organization that allows anyone needing food to obtain it for free or at a very minimum price. The message is: “We CARE.” The CURLDAZE mission is to help people everywhere embrace and love their hair; one curl at a time!

                              Empowering through Education

                              CURLDAZE Founder Robyn Atwater Talks Curls, Community, and Innovation

                              Beyond products, how does CurlDaze contribute to educating its audience about curly hair care? Are there specific initiatives or resources to empower individuals to embrace their natural curls? 

                              I’ve sat on various panels with other leaders in the hair care industry, and we discussed the current status and future of the natural hair care industry. After the discussions, the audiences posed their questions and concerns, and hopefully, the knowledge we shared helped educate, enlighten, and expand the knowledge base of our communities. The goal is to expand our activity in this area of enlightenment.

                              Position in the Market

                              CURLDAZE Founder Robyn Atwater Talks Curls, Community, and Innovation
                              Image Source: @curldazehaircare

                              With many products in the natural hair care market, what sets CurlDaze apart, and how does the brand maintain its uniqueness while adapting to industry trends? 

                              People fuel trends. Products that purport their ability to fulfill the needs stemming from the trend pop up. As a result, poor quality products are produced, leaving people disappointed and dissatisfied, lacking hope and waiting for the next trend. CURLDAZE stays steady with quality products that promote healthy hair and sustained confidence.

                              Partnerships and Collaborations

                              Image Source: @curldazehaircare

                              CurlDaze has collaborated with influencers and other brands. Could you share how these collaborations contribute to the brand’s identity and connection with the natural hair community? 

                              Influencers and collaborations give our customers positive models that share how to nourish and design their hair in fashionable ways. Our partnerships show natural hair in all its glory. Our influencers show how beautiful natural hair is and that beauty, for our customers, strengthens confidence, pride, and assurance that their beautiful natural hair is wanted, desirable, and glorified.

                              Looking Ahead

                              Image Source: @curldaze

                              As the natural hair care landscape evolves, where do you see CurlDaze heading in the future? Are there upcoming products or initiatives that our audience can look forward to? 

                              As you have probably noticed, I’m saying “we” more than saying “I” so much. Our CURLDAZE Team is growing, and more talented people are being added to our team. They bring tremendous talent and expertise to the business and help us to educate, reach, and serve our customers better. We see CURLDAZE becoming a staple in the hair care industry, a name/brand you can trust and depend on for quality products. 

                              We just launched our new “GroDaze” line of products, which boost shine, strengthen, and repair. They are paraben, sulfate, and silicone-free and contain no drying alcohol.

                              To wrap up, what message or advice would CurlDaze like to impart to individuals on their curly hair journey, and how does the brand envision continuing to be a positive force within the natural hair community?

                              There may be one or two things, as humans, that we don’t like about ourselves, and hair should not be one of them. Our hair is our “glory.” Whatever grows out is what we have! We have the option to change it at will, but don’t dislike it and don’t neglect it. It is part of you; each of us is important, valuable, and beautiful. So, nourish your hair. Keep it healthy and walk like a peacock into any room, event, or celebration with pride, confidence, and “CURLS FOR DAZE”!

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              If you follow the Curly Girl Method for caring for your hair, you don’t have to spend a fortune or take a trip to the hair salon for Curly Girl Method-approved products. Products can be very costly when it comes to taking care of your curls. Fortunately, you can get some great products at your local drugstore or big box store without spending much money.

                              Let’s take a look at 20 products you can buy for under $10.

                              1. Cantu Protective Styles Braiding & Twisting Gel, $9.49

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              This long-lasting, non-greasy formula is here to help keep your braids, cornrows, locs, and weaves slicked down and in place.

                              2. TRESemme Flawless Curls Mousse, $7.99

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              Say goodbye to dry and frizzy curls with this moisturizing mousse. If you’re looking for a professional quality mousse that will still give you flexibility in style, then look no further.

                              3. Cake The Curl Friend Defining Curl Cream, $9.69

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              There’s nothing like a really good curl cream that helps with natural definition. Cake brings a silky formula that will leave your curls glossy, defined, and frizz-free.

                              4. Afro Unicorn Magical Tresses Sparkle Bright Edges & More, $7.99

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              If you’re looking for a product that will make your tiny tots smile, this is it. Afro Unicorn creates a formula to help with ponytails, braids, twists, locks, and flyaways.

                              5. Taliah Waajid Curly Curl Cream $9.29

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              It contains a non-greasy formula that makes up an herbal hair cream to eliminate frizz and revitalize curls. Your hair will love feeling conditioned and nourished with additional shine and moisture.

                              6. Cantu Shea Butter Moisturizing Curl Activator Cream, $7.49

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              This is one of my favorite curl-defining creams. It’s made with 100% Pure Shea Butter and formulated without harsh ingredients. It defines, moisturizes, and restores curls, leaving them smooth and frizz-free.

                              7. Shine ‘n’ Jam Setting Mousse $7.99

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              Shine ‘n’ Jam has partnered with hair guru, Stasha Harris, owner of Magic Fingers Studio to bring an alcohol-free formula that will eliminate any flyaways and extend the life of your current style.

                              8. Maui Moisture Heal & Hydrate + Shea Butter Shampoo $9.99

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              Creamy shea butter is whipped into this hydrating conditioner blend and coconut and macadamia oils to help deeply quench, nourish, and soften your strands to restore your hair to healthy.

                              9. Creme of Nature Pure Honey Shrinkage Defense Curl Activator $8.29

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              Made with a blend of pure honey, this activator helps to define and elongate curls and coils.

                              10. Curl Power Nourishing Curl Cream, $9.99

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              Bring on a nourishing curl cream that won’t compromise our style or definition.

                              11. Aunt Jackie’s Oh So Strong Biotin & Honey Shine Boosting Moisturizer, $8.99

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              If your braids need a refresh, you’re going to love this blend of rosemary and mint. You can easily moisturize, freshen, and revive your dry hair and scalp with just a few spritzes.

                              12. Kiss Foam Mousse, $9.59

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              The lightweight formula is the perfect finishing touch for all protective hairstyles to set and seal your braids. This can reduce frizzing, present flyaways, lock in moisture, and dries quickly.

                              13. Breath of Fresh Hair by Urban Hydration Shampoo, $8.29

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              For type 4 coilies, this is a gentle, sulfate-free shampoo that is infused with natural plant oils and extracts.

                              14. Moisture Boost Conditioner Infused with Argan Oil, $6.99

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              This product is one that any textures can use. It’s an all-time favorite of mine, and a little goes a long way. This conditioner penetrates the hair to provide exactly what’s needed every time. It also contains enriched proteins to repair hair, moisturize, and build the body.

                              15. Jamaican Black Castor Oil Head To Toe Oil, $10.00

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              We love a product that doubles for our hair and body. This can be used to revitalize healthy hair and skin and can be used as a hot oil treatment add shine, moisture, and strength to any style.

                              16. Not Your Mother’s Curl Talk Frizz Control Sculpting Gel, $8.99

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              This gel helps to define curls and elongate curls. It leaves the hair soft and frizz-free.

                              17. As I Am, Coconut CoWash Cleansing Conditioner, $9.29

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              This co-wash takes cleansing to new heights by gently removing residue from hair and scalp. The no-suds moisturizing cleanser helps to retain and add moisture to curls and coils.

                              18. Mielle Pomegranate & Honey Curl Defining Mousse, $9.99

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              This product is a top seller at Walgreens. Surprised? Mielle always delivers a super-rich formula that gives top-notch results.

                              19. African Pride “Feel It Formula”, $7.99

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              This ‘Feel It Formula’ brings back the glory of wash day at an affordable price. The super-ingredients like peppermint oil, rosemary oi, and sage oil work to strengthen hair and promote growth.

                              20. SheaMoisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil & Flaxseed Strong Hold Styling Gel $9.99

                              Top 20 CG Approved Drugstore Products Under $10

                              Here is an alcohol-free serum that is nutrient-dense. Natural ingredients like flaxseed and shea butter help to achieve any curl and coily hairstyles.

                              Don’t forget to vote for your favorite brands in our 2024 Best of the Best Voting Poll!

                              Revolutionizing Scalp Health: The Act + Acre Journey to Empowerment and Clean Beauty

                              One-star shines exceptionally bright in the vast expanse of the clean beauty universe, illuminating the path toward innovation, sustainability, and empowerment. This luminary is Act + Acre, a brainchild of Helen Reavey, whose journey from the quaint streets of Armagh, Northern Ireland, to the global beauty stage has redefined the essence of haircare. Embedded in this narrative, as part of our original series “Laying the Roots,” is a tale of ambition, expertise, and a steadfast commitment to treating scalp health as the foundation of hair wellness.

                              Humble Beginnings to Vision Aspirations

                              Revolutionizing Scalp Health: The Act + Acre Journey to Empowerment and Clean Beauty

                              The journey of Act + Acre began in the seemingly ordinary setting of a corner store in Armagh, where a young Helen Reavey’s admiration for her father’s entrepreneurial spirit planted the seeds of ambition in her heart. This admiration evolved into a dream, a vision that would challenge the beauty industry’s status quo.

                              Helen’s struggles with scalp health and her wealth of experience as a fashion and celebrity hairstylist revealed a significant oversight in the market: a scarcity of authentic scalp-nurturing haircare solutions. This revelation led to Act + Acre, a brand that prioritizes scalp health as the foundation of hair wellness and challenges conventional beauty norms.

                              Reflecting on the formation of Act + Acre and the impact of her gender on her leadership and company ethos, Helen shared, “Leading Act+Acre has truly been a transformative journey that has taught me invaluable lessons about adaptability, trust in myself, balancing priorities, the importance of continuous learning, and so much more. As a founder, each day I’m met with new challenges, new ideas, and new opportunities, and it’s been incredibly rewarding to go on this journey of self-discovery and personal growth while developing and building the brand. I’m also so lucky to have the support of my incredible team, which is mostly all-female! Our team at Act+Acre is our biggest accomplishment.”

                              This reflection not only highlights Helen’s journey and the challenges she’s navigated as a woman in leadership but also accentuates the brand’s dedication to fostering innovation, empowerment, and a deep-seated commitment to the principles of clean beauty and scalp health. Act + Acre stands as a testament to what can be achieved when ambition is fueled by a passion for change and a dedication to nurturing a community that shares these values.

                              Cultivating Growth Fueled by Innovation and Community Engagement

                              Revolutionizing Scalp Health: The Act + Acre Journey to Empowerment and Clean Beauty

                              Following the foundational narrative of Act + Acre, the brand’s ascent from an inspired startup to a cornerstone of the clean beauty industry speaks volumes of Helen Reavey’s visionary leadership and the undeniable strength of the community. A landmark in this journey was the introduction of the Stem Cell Scalp Serum, a product that spotlighted Act + Acre and endeared it to a broad audience, marking a significant leap in the brand’s journey.

                              The expansion of Act + Acre into Sephora, alongside the successful launch of the Stem Cell Scalp Serum, clearly indicates Helen’s strategic foresight and the innovative ethos at the heart of the brand. These achievements highlight the importance of a cohesive community carefully cultivated through openness, education, and a shared commitment to better scalp and hair health.

                              This sense of community is deeply integrated into the fabric of Act + Acre, driven by Helen’s dedication to creating exemplary products and educating and empowering consumers. Act + Acre has fostered a supportive and engaged community through transparent communication and initiatives to demystify scalp care. This approach reinforces the brand’s ethos and solidifies its position as a beacon of empowerment and innovation in the clean beauty.

                              Sustaining Beauty: The Convergence of Science and Integrity

                              Image Source: @actandacre

                              In the natural progression from Act + Acre’s community-centric growth, the brand’s commitment to sustainability and scientific rigor becomes increasingly evident. Central to its innovative product range is the patented Cold Processed Method.

                              This groundbreaking approach retains the potency of natural ingredients and significantly reduces the production’s environmental footprint. This technique underscores Act + Acre’s dedication to merging innovation with eco-consciousness, redefining industry standards for ethical haircare.

                              The dialogue between Act + Acre and its vibrant community is crucial in its product line’s continual enhancement and diversification. By listening to and actively engaging with consumer feedback, the brand ensures that each new offering is a testament to scientific ingenuity and a direct response to its users’ real-world needs and desires.

                              This harmonious balance between sustainability, scientific integrity, and consumer-centric innovation positions Act + Acre as a pioneering force in clean beauty, steadfast in its mission to foster both individual and environmental well-being.

                              Empowering Natural Beauty and Beyond

                              Revolutionizing Scalp Health: The Act + Acre Journey to Empowerment and Clean Beauty
                              Image Source: @actandacre

                              Building on this foundation of conscientious innovation, Act + Acre moves to meet and celebrate each customer’s needs. The brand’s latest expansions into products designed for natural hair textures epitomize this commitment.

                              Helen Reavey’s deep understanding of the symbiotic relationship between scalp health and hair texture has led to specialized formulations prioritizing the unique requirements of wavy, curly, and coily hair types. This specialized focus marks a shift towards a more inclusive approach to haircare, where natural beauty’s diversity is acknowledged and actively supported.

                              During our dialogue, Helen Reavey expanded on this, revealing the thoughtful process behind Act + Acre’s product development, “We recognize that each person has a unique relationship with their hair, which is why we strive to create products that our community can trust.

                              Our brand ethos is centered around helping individuals embrace their natural hair by starting with the right foundation – a healthy scalp. With the launch of our new curl and wave system, we’ve introduced a line that caters to various curl patterns, ensuring that each product is as versatile and inclusive as the individuals who use them.”

                              She continued, emphasizing the brand’s innovative approach, “What sets us apart is our focus on the scalp’s health, which is often overlooked despite its critical role in hair texture and overall health. We’ve formulated our products to address this with hydrating ingredients supporting the scalp’s microbiome, promoting healthier, more vibrant curls from the very root.”

                              This dedication to scalp health and natural beauty is a testament to Act + Acre’s broader vision. This vision not only anticipates the future needs of the haircare industry but also shapes it through pioneering initiatives and community-focused actions.

                              Educating for a Healthier Tomorrow