As we celebrate Thanksgiving this week, let’s take a moment to acknowledge the beauty contributions of the First Nations people. As I explored the web to learn about what Native American women used to secure their beauty throughout their lives, I was interested and astounded by the many remedies, which were ‘natural’ products. Aloe Vera, which I have used to soothe my skin after experiencing a terrible sunburn, is but one example. After spreading this gel-like solution from a plant, which looks like a cactus, but in fact is a member of the Lily family, my skin was instantly relieved from the irritation. You can grow this plant in your home as long as you don’t expose it to frost.
What are some of the other ‘natural’ beauty remedies used by Native Americans? The list is extensive.
Bearberry for itchy scalp, Juniper for shiny hair, Blue Corn to purify skin, Fireweek to protect skin from the cold.
In the past HairBlues has focused mainly on hair loss and hair care suggestions. However, in the future this blog will focus on various types of beauty issues; nails, hair color processes that promote articles about beauty, and what others define as beauty.
♦ Are tattoos taboo, or beautiful? To whom? What is “body art”?
♦ What is the false hair and human hair industry doing for and to women? Which women primarily? What is ethical human hair?
♦ Is it important that you have a particular hair salon and hair beauty specialist attend to your hair?
♦ Does it make a difference if you pay $100 or $50 to have your hair done? What do hair specialist do, that you can not get done by doing it yourself?
♦ Can women get a good haircut at a barbershop?
♦ Are some beauty salons community hotspots where discussions of various topics, and seeing friends take place?
♦ Do nail gels ruin your nails? What do some people say about ultra violet nail drying machines?
HairBlues looks forward to the coming conversations, and exchanges. We hope that you will join in. The calendar format will change to a monthly update rather, than a post every other week. We welcome your continued interest and ask that you make sure to continue to follow us, as well as hearing your ideas of topics you would like to view and learn about.
Many women prefer the convenience of chemically relaxed hair. What can we do when those chemicals cause other types of scalp problems? How do we avoid suffering from hair loss caused by chemicals in the future? Here’s good piece of advice that I found searching the Internet.
It’s best to consult with a professional to determine what your particular needs are when it comes to relaxers. And no, you cannot apply a lye relaxer over hair that’s been processed with a no-lye relaxer (and vice versa)! However, you can apply a different relaxer to new growth if your current straightener isn’t giving you the results you want. It’s not recommended to constantly switch relaxer types or brands. Once you find the relaxer that works for you, it’s best to stick with it until or unless it stops. via Lye and No-Lye Hair Relaxers.
It turns out that many hair care blogs have articles commenting on just this topic. I searched for some of the key points highlighted, which may help to reduce any problems that you are having due to chemically induced dry scalp with your relaxed hair. Read on and don’t forget to click the link at the end for a more detailed discussion about these topics.
♦ After your hair has been chemically straightened, wait 48 hours before you wash your hair. The chemicals need time to set.
♦ Once a week for the first month, apply a deep conditioning mask and cover your head with a shower cap to lock in heat.
♦ When you sleep, use a satin pillow case, this will help protect your hair by preventing it from tangling.
♦ When it comes to styling your hair, avoid using high heat blow dryers or curling irons. If you must use them then reduce the heat.
♦ Try to avoid using hair spray or gel as they can dry out your hair.
♣ Daily application of a moisturizing cream also helps. Avoid products that contain petroleum and silicones as these are often too heavy for relaxed hair. Instead, look for products that use oils like aloe vera, jojoba, olive oil and other natural oils. These are much lighter than the petroleums and silicones, and they moisturize your hair without weighing it down. via How to Take Care of Relaxed Hair | eHow.com.
HairBlues Recommendation: Check out the Just Natural website to find products for relaxed hair that will help you to moisturize your hair and scalp with organic natural products. Click the link below.
Sometimes at HairBlues I like to take a “time-out” to focus on a particular topic: today’s pause is to consider (again) “what is considered Beauty”? In other posts I have discussed “Bald” as a beauty statement, and “how to deal with making your hair loss beautiful”. We’ve focused on weaves and wigs as beauty statements. In this post the focus is on African-American (Kinky Hair), and where we are as women who wear this hairstyle as a fashion and beauty statement.
Everywhere I go these days I see beautiful natural (kinky) hairstyles worn by both young and mature black women. As a baby boomer, I am only a little jealous that many of those styles had not been thought of when I first strutted my Afro hairstyle :). But, after more than 40 years since black women freed themselves from the stigma of having “bad” hair, and James Brown (the Godfather of soul) made it clear that being Black was something to be proud of (which included natural, unprocessed or straightened hair worn by black women) this discussion is still going on – that is to say – black hair not traditionally combed is not necessarily considered a thing of beauty on black women.
What a wonderful thing that black women have progressed even further to feeling comfortable with “wash & wearing” their hair without combing it out. I remember when I first did that over 30 years ago how mortified my Mom (rest her soul) was that I was going outside without “picking” my hair out.
Nowadays it warms my heart every time I see a young woman who has the freedom and courage to wear her “natural” hair. But, is there a price she is going to pay for doing that? Apparently, the answer is YES – for some black women. However, an article by Demetria L. Lucas, “Why Does My Natural Hair Get No Love”, published on The Root (http://www.theroot.com), suggests that oftentimes our conclusions about “not getting any love for natural hair” may need self-reflection, as well as self-reliance.
At Hairblues we agree: Beauty after all is not only in the eye of the beholder, but in the heart and mind of the “Beheld”.
For generations African-American girls have had their hair braided because it is a traditional belief that it would help their hair to grow.
Nowadays, there is talk about braids “causing” hair loss. At HairBlues we think it is important enough to investigate what some of the causes of hair loss and braids may be. Below are tips we found online that may help to ease this problem, which appears to happen more often these days. Don’t forget to click on the link provided at the end of the highlighted tips to get detailed information.
♦Beauty should not hurt! If your head hurts, it’s because your hair is braided too tightly, or you have too much extension hair added. In either situation, this doesn’t bode well for the future of your hairline. Some braiders may tell you to take an aspirin and the pain should be gone by morning, but any pain is an indicator that something is wrong.
♦ Use warm water to loosen them: Take a shower and let the water cascade over your hair. You may need to gently rub your scalp to loosen the braids a little. This is not the time to worry about how much money you just spent and how much time it took to style these braids, so don’t think about that! Concern yourself with loosening up this tight style and saving your hairline.
♦ Remove them: Yes, remove any braids that are causing little bumps to pop up on your scalp. This is not normal and can lead to hair loss down the road, especially if you make a habit of wearing tight braid styles.
♦ Do yourself a favor and see how your head feels when you’re still in the stylist’s chair. Does it hurt while she’s braiding? That’s the time to ask her to ease up on your hair.
♦ Do not return to tight braiders: Some braiders are notoriously hard on hair. Once should be enough to tell you that this is someone who doesn’t care about the health of your scalp. via What Can I Do about Tight Braids.
FYI –Traction Alopecia:By Del Sandeen
Definition: A condition where constant pulling and tension on an area of the hair results in thinning, breakage and/or hair loss. This is commonly seen in women and children who braid the hair too tightly particularly at the hairline or wear the same style over extended periods of time, not allowing the scalp and hair follicles to “rest.”via Traction Alopecia.
Ladies – are you blow drying your hair too much? Do you know how much is “too much”? Well neither do we. However, have you thought about air drying your hair occasionally, or not washing your hair so often? Below are some tips and great suggestions we found online about what you can do to avoid hair loss by damaging your hair when using a blow dryer. Don’t forget to click on the links provided to get further details.
♦ As far as blow dryer heat goes don’t use the high heat setting except in the beginning when hair is still very wet, once hair starts to feel mostly dry it’s time to turn down the heat.
♦ If you start to smell hairs burning it’s time to use the cold shot if you have one to cool it. Once hair is damaged from burning or any other way it is permanent.
♦ The only way to really get rid of damaged hair is to cut it off, which you will in time.
♦ If you curl your hair with hot rollers or curling irons you can go old school every now and then and use regular rollers and rags like they used to before all of these hairstyling tools were invented.
BEAUTY– how it gets defined is always intriguing . I once read a story about a person who had no teeth. The person sharing the story reported she had never seen such a beautiful human being. The beauty she said was in the happiness of his eyes and smile. It was in his demeanor. Everyone who was lucky enough to be in this person’s presence felt mesmerized by the beauty this person radiated. No teeth. And beautiful nevertheless.
How many of you were fortunate enough to see the young, and beautiful African-American woman Gabrielle (Gabby) Douglas perform in the Gymnastics competitions? How many of you saw her fly through the air with sheer strength, precision, and grace? Courage in its highest form. This young woman took her body to the level of winning a GOLD medal! She is the first African-American woman to win the All Around in the history of the Olympic games.
Well, if you were one of the many focusing on Gabby’s hairdo, I’m afraid you missed the show…and you missed history in the making.
AtHairBlues we were astounded by the conversation that evolved during Gabby’s Olympic performances. We considered that those who were discussing Gabby ‘s hairdo had possibly missed the show. That is the only way we could explain this mind-boggling occurrence!
True Beauty ♦ Excellence
The show Gabrielle Douglas gave the world was singular in its accomplishment. That’s how she earned the Gold Medal for the United States. She is the best in the world, folks, in her Olympic category the All-Around.
As the saying goes “let’s not get it twisted”. How many feats can you do (or anyone you know) flying through the air – and keep your hairdo in place at the same time?
We at HairBluesCongratulate Gabrielle Douglas – an Olympic Golden Beauty. Let’s focus on the importance of that accomplishment! Hairdos come, go, and change.
Olympic History is forever! Let’s be proud that an African-American woman has made history as an American unforgettable, and girls around the world have a beautiful new image to emulate!