Beauty - Hair Care - Fashion : More Black Women Going Natural

MsInterpret

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Apr 21, 2007
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Washington

PHOTO BY KIMBERLY P. MITCHELL
Kimberly P. Mitchell/Detroit Free Press Espy Thomas, 31, of Detroit, who with her sister, Jennifer, 29, hosts periodic natural hair meet-ups that attract hundreds of women.
Pregnancy motivated Gwen Jimmere to stop using chemicals to straighten her thick, curly hair.
"I was pregnant and I knew anything I put on my body goes to the baby," says Jimmere, 29, of Canton, Mich.
She had tried wearing her hair without a chemical straightener a decade earlier. But the fervor for the afros of the '60s and '70s was long over, and there was little information or encouragement on how to pull off a natural style.
Most black women, like Jimmere, were perming, hot-pressing or flat-ironing their kinky, curly hair. Straight hair - better still, long straight hair - was the way to fit in, the way to be pretty and conform to the standard of American beauty.
Fast-forward to 2011 when Jimmere chose to set her own standard by rocking her hair in all its natural glory. This go-round, she found an abundance of support — meet-ups of women wearing natural hair styles, books on natural hair care, celebrities talking about their stylish, natural 'dos.
But perhaps the biggest signifier of the current natural hair movement is found online. A community of women created a virtual pulpit for natural hair that includes social forums, video instructions, tutorials, product websites and personal testimonies.
It's not that black women aren't straightening their hair — most still do. But a growing number of women of all ages are finding beauty, acceptance, liberation and business opportunities in wearing natural hairstyles like braids, locks, twists, knots, afros and various creations in-between.
"Women are sharing information on Twitter, YouT ube, LinkedIn, Facebook, everywhere. It's endless," says Espy Thomas, 31, of Detroit, who with her sister Jennifer, 29, hosts periodic natural hair meet-ups that attract hundreds of women.
"More and more black women are opting to wear their natural hair and discontinue use of relaxers," says a 2011 Mintel report showing that from 2006 to 2011, the sales of relaxer kits dropped 17 percent to $38 million. The trend is "expected to continue," the report states.
Mintel is a global market research company. A consumer study it conducted showed that the percentage of black women who said they wore their hair natural jumped from 26 percent in 2010 to 36 percent in 2011.
"The shift from relaxed to natural is becoming so common that it has spurred growth of a whole new sub-segment of products for women who are 'transitioning,' with products that minimize breakage as hair transitions from chemically straightened to curly or kinky," the report states.
It's also a booming business, says Sue Silva, marketing director for the Sofn'free, a hair care line. "Everybody in the business is starting to manufacturer a curly line," she says. And not just for African-American women.
"Our target is 70 percent African American and 30 percent other. A lot of other women - Jewish, Latina and red heads who tend to have coarse, wiry, coiled textured hair — are interested in these products. Caucasian women have curly hair, too."
She noted that Target, one of the nation's largest retailers, now has a section devoted to natural hair products in most of its stores. And several of those products are produced by companies owned by black women, including Miss Jessie's and Taliah Waajid.
READ MORE http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2012/jun/17/more-black-women-choose-to-go-natural/
 

MimiBelle

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Dec 13, 2010
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Texas...for now.
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RN-BSN
I was shocked to go into Walgreens and Sally's and see natural hair care products on the shelves.

Up until a year ago, you had to shop online for quality products.
I'm not natural. I was natural but I'm back on the creamy crack...*laugh*

I didn't even want to relax. I just can't handle my hair in it's natural state. Part of the reason, I think, is because I didn't grow with my hair. I never did the big chop. I was a long-term transitioner who hid my hair in sewins and lacefronts.
I can't braid or anything.
So...when I took my weave out. I was BSL-length with all this damned hair and not a clue what to do with it or how to style it properly. I don't live in a city with natural hair care salons.
I wore braids outs. It's the only style that I could do.
I mean, it took me weeks to figure out how to detangle: IN the shower.
Before then, I was slathering conditioner all over it and detangling it for 3 hours, easy.

Also, I'm not a TWA kind of girl but my texture was disappointing in that it won't 'fro properly, anyway.
I guess it's a nice texture but I wanted one of those big -*** 1970's type 'fros.
Unfortunately, my hair grows down...not 'out'.
I dunno....
It was upsetting. My husband/then boyfriend and I had issues all the time...surrounding my head.
I was extra sensitive but he never once told me that I looked pretty UNLESS my hair was blown out and flat-ironed.
YEAH, I NOTICED!
He'd say thoughtless things, too. Like, "Oh, I thought you were getting ready" and looking at my hair.
Really? Well - how 'bout you can go by yourself and I'll take me and my crazy hair back to my house!
...and that's exactly what I did.
Then...I'd have to braid it before going to sleep which took forever. I mean how unsexy is it to be going to bed with a bunch of plaits in your hair, looking like a millennium slave...?
About as unsexy as going to sleep with a rag on your head...*laugh*
...and no - I do not really wrap my relaxed hair. I let it flow and just sleep on a satin pillow. Bump in the mornings and DC often (due to the heat).

Then he'd see me fighting with it and say things like, "Mira, if you wanna get your hair done...just tell me...."
I didn't speak to him for the rest of the day.
So, I ended up saying 'screw it' and relaxing my hair to take the bulk of it. *sigh*

Honestly, everyone rails about black women and not being natural...but what sort of SUPPORT do some of us get when we do try? You frequent these hair sites, I'm sure. You've seen it.
Plenty of black women only rec'v support from their online hair communities.
....and yeah - the non-blacks loved my hair more than the black folks that I encountered or any in my own family. Forever asking to put their hands in it.
"Why don't more black women wear their hair like yours.", they'd say to me.

How am I supposed to answer a question like that? The reasons are varied and personal.

ANYWHO

*****************

I still use natural hair care products and oils because they're better for the hair.
I used to swear by Elucence but it has been dethroned. *laugh*

My personal new fav?
moisterconditioner_l.jpg



Good slip and my hair felt very moisturized. (I'm a 3c/4a...but my hair's filled with all kinds of weirdness. I swear, the top has no texture.)
The line is ORS, so it's no shock that they'd put out a 'natural care' line that killed the competition (at least in convenience stores). CURLS UNLEASHED is the best on the market.

I'm relaxed but I do flatiron with the curl defining creme. It's ok. Doesn't add much. It doesn't feel like a moisturizer, though I suppose it could be a good 'sealant'.
Still - it can't touch 'Straight Pearl':
9_2.jpg

http://www.blendedbeauty.com/
 

Chevron Dove

Well-Known Member
REGISTERED MEMBER
May 7, 2009
6,288
2,928
I was shocked to go into Walgreens and Sally's and see natural hair care products on the shelves.

Up until a year ago, you had to shop online for quality products.
I'm not natural. I was natural but I'm back on the creamy crack...*laugh*

I didn't even want to relax. I just can't handle my hair in it's natural state. Part of the reason, I think, is because I didn't grow with my hair. I never did the big chop. I was a long-term transitioner who hid my hair in sewins and lacefronts.
I can't braid or anything.
So...when I took my weave out. I was BSL-length with all this damned hair and not a clue what to do with it or how to style it properly. I don't live in a city with natural hair care salons.
I wore braids outs. It's the only style that I could do.
I mean, it took me weeks to figure out how to detangle: IN the shower.
Before then, I was slathering conditioner all over it and detangling it for 3 hours, easy.

Also, I'm not a TWA kind of girl but my texture was disappointing in that it won't 'fro properly, anyway.
I guess it's a nice texture but I wanted one of those big -*** 1970's type 'fros.
Unfortunately, my hair grows down...not 'out'.
I dunno....
It was upsetting. My husband/then boyfriend and I had issues all the time...surrounding my head.
I was extra sensitive but he never once told me that I looked pretty UNLESS my hair was blown out and flat-ironed.
YEAH, I NOTICED!
He'd say thoughtless things, too. Like, "Oh, I thought you were getting ready" and looking at my hair.
Really? Well - how 'bout you can go by yourself and I'll take me and my crazy hair back to my house!
...and that's exactly what I did.
Then...I'd have to braid it before going to sleep which took forever. I mean how unsexy is it to be going to bed with a bunch of plaits in your hair, looking like a millennium slave...?
About as unsexy as going to sleep with a rag on your head...*laugh*
...and no - I do not really wrap my relaxed hair. I let it flow and just sleep on a satin pillow. Bump in the mornings and DC often (due to the heat).

Then he'd see me fighting with it and say things like, "Mira, if you wanna get your hair done...just tell me...."
I didn't speak to him for the rest of the day.
So, I ended up saying 'screw it' and relaxing my hair to take the bulk of it. *sigh*

Honestly, everyone rails about black women and not being natural...but what sort of SUPPORT do some of us get when we do try? You frequent these hair sites, I'm sure. You've seen it.
Plenty of black women only rec'v support from their online hair communities.
....and yeah - the non-blacks loved my hair more than the black folks that I encountered or any in my own family. Forever asking to put their hands in it.
"Why don't more black women wear their hair like yours.", they'd say to me.

How am I supposed to answer a question like that? The reasons are varied and personal.

ANYWHO

*****************

I still use natural hair care products and oils because they're better for the hair.
I used to swear by Elucence but it has been dethroned. *laugh*

My personal new fav?
moisterconditioner_l.jpg



Good slip and my hair felt very moisturized. (I'm a 3c/4a...but my hair's filled with all kinds of weirdness. I swear, the top has no texture.)
The line is ORS, so it's no shock that they'd put out a 'natural care' line that killed the competition (at least in convenience stores). CURLS UNLEASHED is the best on the market.

I'm relaxed but I do flatiron with the curl defining creme. It's ok. Doesn't add much. It doesn't feel like a moisturizer, though I suppose it could be a good 'sealant'.
Still - it can't touch 'Straight Pearl':
9_2.jpg

http://www.blendedbeauty.com/

Wow! You wrote the truth!

I remember the non supportive comments, looks, and sneers form my own people too years back, but I've noticed lately there has been a lot of support. I've got a story to tell too, hopefully I will share it later. I'm going to look into the products you've listed. I love the Tea Tree Cream/oil.

I too was shocked today when I went to a Beauty Store and found natural hair caire products! They even had weave that was natural and I know they didn't have it years ago because I looked all over the store for it and asked the manager and was told they never considered even looking into whether it was manufactured.

I sure did appreciate your post.
 

Keita Kenyatta

Well-Known Member
REGISTERED MEMBER
Feb 7, 2004
5,631
3,350

PHOTO BY KIMBERLY P. MITCHELL
Kimberly P. Mitchell/Detroit Free Press Espy Thomas, 31, of Detroit, who with her sister, Jennifer, 29, hosts periodic natural hair meet-ups that attract hundreds of women.
Pregnancy motivated Gwen Jimmere to stop using chemicals to straighten her thick, curly hair.
"I was pregnant and I knew anything I put on my body goes to the baby," says Jimmere, 29, of Canton, Mich.
She had tried wearing her hair without a chemical straightener a decade earlier. But the fervor for the afros of the '60s and '70s was long over, and there was little information or encouragement on how to pull off a natural style.
Most black women, like Jimmere, were perming, hot-pressing or flat-ironing their kinky, curly hair. Straight hair - better still, long straight hair - was the way to fit in, the way to be pretty and conform to the standard of American beauty.
Fast-forward to 2011 when Jimmere chose to set her own standard by rocking her hair in all its natural glory. This go-round, she found an abundance of support — meet-ups of women wearing natural hair styles, books on natural hair care, celebrities talking about their stylish, natural 'dos.
But perhaps the biggest signifier of the current natural hair movement is found online. A community of women created a virtual pulpit for natural hair that includes social forums, video instructions, tutorials, product websites and personal testimonies.
It's not that black women aren't straightening their hair — most still do. But a growing number of women of all ages are finding beauty, acceptance, liberation and business opportunities in wearing natural hairstyles like braids, locks, twists, knots, afros and various creations in-between.
"Women are sharing information on Twitter, YouT ube, LinkedIn, Facebook, everywhere. It's endless," says Espy Thomas, 31, of Detroit, who with her sister Jennifer, 29, hosts periodic natural hair meet-ups that attract hundreds of women.
"More and more black women are opting to wear their natural hair and discontinue use of relaxers," says a 2011 Mintel report showing that from 2006 to 2011, the sales of relaxer kits dropped 17 percent to $38 million. The trend is "expected to continue," the report states.
Mintel is a global market research company. A consumer study it conducted showed that the percentage of black women who said they wore their hair natural jumped from 26 percent in 2010 to 36 percent in 2011.
"The shift from relaxed to natural is becoming so common that it has spurred growth of a whole new sub-segment of products for women who are 'transitioning,' with products that minimize breakage as hair transitions from chemically straightened to curly or kinky," the report states.
It's also a booming business, says Sue Silva, marketing director for the Sofn'free, a hair care line. "Everybody in the business is starting to manufacturer a curly line," she says. And not just for African-American women.
"Our target is 70 percent African American and 30 percent other. A lot of other women - Jewish, Latina and red heads who tend to have coarse, wiry, coiled textured hair — are interested in these products. Caucasian women have curly hair, too."
She noted that Target, one of the nation's largest retailers, now has a section devoted to natural hair products in most of its stores. And several of those products are produced by companies owned by black women, including Miss Jessie's and Taliah Waajid.
READ MORE http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2012/jun/17/more-black-women-choose-to-go-natural/


I'm curious to know if it's because the weave has replaced the relaxer kits in this issue?There must be research out there on this as well.
 

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