Natural African hair has always been fascinating. The beautiful hairstyles of locks, braids and cornrows we see everywhere today are amazing. Just when you thought, you have seen it all you get another dazzling piece of creative hair art coming. The styling possibilities are endless and make you wonder about the roots. It makes you wonder about history and authentic hairstyling.
At the 15th anniversary of Going-Natural.com, I would like to give homage to the natural hair stylists and salons who rooted the natural hair movement. To those who kept Black follicles alive, healthy and stylish, long before natural hair became the movement it is today. Read More “Going Natural celebrates its 15th anniversary with Hair Show”
Sisterlocks is quickly becoming a lifestyle choice by many black women. Their beauty, ease, and convenience are what most women find appealing. For one, you can still style these small locs the same as you would your loose natural hair. Also, the upkeep of sisterlocks is very low maintenance. If you’re considering getting sisterlocks, I’m sure the main questions you may have is “How much do they cost and can I afford them?”
If you haven’t already done so, get yourself educated on the sisterlocks brand and process. You can do this by visiting the official sisterlocks website http://www.sisterlocks.com/ Once you’ve read all of the pertinent information on the website, you can start searching for a certified consultant or qualified trainee in your area. Some, if not most, consultants charge a consultation fee, so be sure to ask before you schedule your appointment.
Price Factors & Hair Length Requirement
It is important to remember that the cost of sisterlocks varies from city to city and state to state. What your friends or family members may have been quoted for their sisterlocks installation may not be the same for you. Below are some important factors to keep in mind that will impact your sisterlocks price quote:
- The length of your hair
- Your hair density (your hair thickness/thinness & how much hair you have)
- The time/labor needed to install your sisterlocks.
You are required to have at least one inch of hair in order to have sisterlocks installed. The base price for sisterlocks in some areas is $500 and $100 for each additional inch of hair you have. For myself, I was measured at having seven and a half inches of hair (in it’s natural, unstretched state) at my consultation. I was quoted $750, and my $30 dollar consultation fee was applied, so my final price came to $720. Remember: the installation of your sisterlocks is the only time you will pay such a high fee. This fee is your investment.
Maintenance & Fee Comparisons
Your consultant will decide during your first follow up appointment after your installation how often you should come back for retightening’s or reties. Depending on how your hair reacts to sisterlocks being installed and your hair type, your reties can be anywhere between every 4-6 weeks. There is a separate fee for reties, and your consultant will discuss his or her fee with you during your consultation. Some consultants charge a base price for reties while others charge by the hour.
You can also think of it this way – your retightening fee is comparable to you paying your beautician $80 (give or take) every 3-6 weeks for a relaxer touch-up and style/cut, plus tip. The only difference is with sisterlocks, you pay a one-time investment fee (the installation) for a lifetime of hair freedom. During your retightening, there is maintenance involved which includes keeping the sisterlocks grid intact and correcting any issues you may have such as bunching, slippage, breakage or loc reattachment. All of this is time-consuming and is factored into the retightening fee. As your locs mature, you and your consultant will come to a mutual agreement as to how often you need to come in for your reties.
If you were like me and got your hair braided regularly while a loose natural (either at the shop or by someone you know), you know how expensive that can be. Depending on the style and length of braids I wanted, I spent $150 – $200+ (including tip) on braids that I would try to keep at least 3 months. Unfortunately, I would have to take my braids down after 2 or 2 ½ months because of new growth or because the braids themselves were starting to frizz up. When I couldn’t afford to go to the shop regularly, I would have my sister-in-law install crochet braids or box braids for a cheaper fee. All in all, I was spending upwards of $600+ a year on temporary hairstyles that took 8-10 hours to install each time. That is not the case with sisterlocks. Sisterlocks is a permanent style that is taken down if and when you decide you no longer want them.
Can I Afford Sisterlocks?
Do the math and crunch the numbers. Most people get sticker shock at the installation price. Yes, it’s expensive, but it’s also a lifetime and lifestyle investment. You are investing in your hair freedom, and it’s a one time fee. You’ll (hopefully) never have to pay this fee again. When I knew without a shadow of a doubt that I wanted sisterlocks, I right away talked to my husband and we worked it into our budget. So yes, save your coins. Start a budget that includes installation and your monthly reties. Think back to all the years you were getting relaxers and how often you had to go back for touch-ups, color, or a cut and style. Be sure to include the tip you added. Think about how often you went to the shop or to someone’s house to get braids and how much money was spent on something that only lasts a few months. Trust me, investing in sisterlocks is well worth the money spent.
For products to maintain locs check the Locs ‘s Stuff Store
Black people are the only human beings on planet earth who need to go to court to obtain the right to wear their god-given tresses natural. Locs, Afros, Cornrows, all perfectly natural styles for black hair as it grows out of follicles, are stigmatized to the point that they are declared unacceptable. Not only in the corporate world but even in schools as we have recently seen in a wrestling match. Read More “Celebrating New York City’s ban on hair discrimination to transborder – The Crown Act”
While there are many beautiful, intricate styles for locs and natural hair, adding a bold, beautiful scarf and some big, banging earrings to the mix can give you a simple yet bold look. Our featured style of the week comes from @mimicherisme (on Instagram) of Daytona Beach, Florida. She was kind enough to share her loc journey and where she found her beautiful head wrap and earrings:
“I colored and installed my own micro locs using the interlock method and have a total of 518 locs. My installation was in December, so my locs are still new and haven’t matured yet. They are three months old. I got my wrap and earrings from an African pop-up shop during Daytona Beach’s annual Bike Week.”
Like Mimi, you can change up your look and go for bolder, brighter colors for the spring and summer months, and it’s simpler than you think:
Where to find Beautiful Head Wraps
First, check out The colorful head wraps at WhatNaturalsLove.com where you’ll find beautiful African head wraps and accessories to purchase. Also, be sure to visit our Facebook Page facebook.com/goingnatural11 a natural hair page and minority-owned business that discusses all things natural and promotes small minority-owned businesses. It also keeps you updated on various marketplaces and goods and services offered that may be of interest to you. Finally, keep an eye out for what is happening in your own community. Search online for African popup shops coming to your area. Check out the vendors coming to your local festivals or special events and support your local small businesses.
Add some color
Are you ready to wash away the winter blues and rejuvenate your spirit with a splash of color for your locs this spring and summer? Go for it! If you don’t want permanent color, no worries. There are many temporary hair dyes (or hair paint) on the market (like hairpaintwax.com) that are easy to apply and will stay on your hair until you wash it out. More importantly, they are safe to use. Hair paints are a great way to test out as many colors as you want while you decide what color(s) is the right one for you without the permanent commitment.
Whatever you decide, remember that simple can be bold with just a splash of color. Check out other Head Wraps: Head wraps: Past, present, and future
The endless ways you can wear this dress. This dress made Going Natural history on facebook when the video went viral after the blog Please help me find this dress. Click to order The Moroccan Magic Dress. Read More “Moroccan Magic Dress, One Dress, Endless styles”
During the Miss Black Hair Nederland pageant, the idea is usually to pass across the message that the hair is the crown of a woman and it should be worn with pride. However, in this last concluded Miss Black Hair Netherlands election, something shocking took place Read More “Miss Black Hair Nederland, Shaving off her Natural Hair”
It’s been a while since I visited and blogged about the largest hair and beauty show I’ve ever been to but I wouldn’t want to miss this one for the world. Not only is the International Hair and Beauty Show New York over 100 years old, the beauty business has tremendously changed and I am happy to say, to my liking. According to StraightsTimes celebrity hairstylist Nick Arrojo predicted this year to be about embracing your natural texture! Read More “Natural Hair and Black Beauty businesses at IBS New York”
On November 3rd, I had the honor to moderate a panel at DBUFF, the Da Bounce Urban Film Festival in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. DBUFF, celebrating its 5th anniversary, featured 35 movies from Black directors. One weekend long an audience could enjoy a wide variety of films from Hollywood to independent productions covering themes from racism to Black literature and of course comedy.
I couldn’t wait to watch and moderate The Big Chop and Changing Women, two films by women from the Dutch Diaspora. Both films were inspiring in their own way, yet they were also quite different.
Changing Women is a short, sharing the journey of director Rachel Tokromo coming to self acceptance by doing the big chop ceremonially. As short as it is, it is deeply touching, inspiring and uplifting celebrating the freedom of self love. A beautiful poem lovingly yet powerfully carries the message we see on the screen ending with: I am splendor and glory if I candidly accept the love that I give. Natural or not, a highly recommended must see!
The Big Chop
The Big Chop is a film by an enthusiastic young journalist named Sherina Leerdam. Inspired by her own journey she follows three women to find out the reason behind their hair choice. Not only do these women have interesting stories to tell that are undoubtedly relatable and inspiring, the movie also revealed a topic we hardly talk about: Shame.
Remarkable is this woman in the film who chooses to solely wear weaves. To her weaves are an accessory like some women who love makeup or nails. Yet when her short natural is cornrowed just before crocheting in extensions, she adamantly says that she will not be on the street like “that”.
As she explains herself, one can clearly see that she is very uncomfortable wearing her natural but at the same time you can’t escape the feeling that she is deeply ashamed of her hair.
This is the story of so many of us. With 73% of hair breakage in our community we may need to look deeper into these issues before telling women to just be happy and accept their natural strands for what they are.
Youtube, instagam and facebook are full of inspiring natural women which is great. All send the message to accept yourself for who you are but the part that is missing is how do you overcome these uneasy feelings, micro aggressions and how do you get there, to self acceptance?
My book Bad Hair Uprooted the Untold History of Black Follicles explains where our undefined feelings related to our hair stem from and may even help one overcome them but in general the steps to overcome issues like shame are often overlooked.
So it definitely deserves praise that Sherina used her coming to self acceptance to make this documentary of which she personally shares a bit of in the film. Also watching two of the featured women extensively share their journey throughout the film is interesting, joyful and relatable to watch.
The Facts and minuses
Although the stories are revealing and I did like the theme the film touched upon, the Big Chop movie can’t be called a documentary. This is because the facts are off. According to the film the relaxer lost popularity during the 60’s. The fact is that the relaxer came on the market after the 60’s and now looses ground because of this new natural hair movement that started with sites like Going-Natural.com and Nappturality.
As a natural hair advocate who knows we still have a long way to go it is painful to watch statements like these delivered as facts. There were a few more statements that should have been fact checked. Needless to say this raises serious questions. If we can’t get the story right, can we be mad when others like the white dominating media don’t?
What was also disappointing is the fact that the random people interviewed on the street all happened to be non-black people. This doesn’t only give the impression of the need for approval of “the white man”, it also implies that Black hair issues came out of nowhere and that it is just a Black people’s problem. By now anyone writing or documenting anything about natural hair should realize that Black people are the only people on planet earth who don’t have the human right to wear their god-given tresses natural.
When I asked the filmmaker about the why, she answered that she did go into a Black barbershop to interview men but felt the footage was weak, not good enough, to make the cut. Although this might be understandable from a practical point of working within a budget and time frame, my worry is that if we don’t put in the extra effort to go after our own stories, can we really blame others, like again the white dominating media, when they don’t?
There was enough that was good stuff in The Big Chop to hope Leerdam continues to make films. My only hope is that the debuting filmmaker but especially the journalist in her learned that it is important to state facts and go after a story to make sure that at least both sides are heard and represented especially when it comes to sensitive topics like Black hair.
All in all DBUFF is a great inspiring event that I highly recommend. I do hope to be back next year and I hope you all travel to Amsterdam to go see, support and enjoy what might be the only Black/Urban Film Festival overseas.
This is a perfect style for naturals, transitioners and even non-naturals. All you really need is a little patience and the right products so these tricks can help you to create these beatiful coils in your your hair.
What you need:
Make sure that your hair is at least damp. If your hair has completely dried use a spray bottle to moisturize while finger coiling your hair.
If you do this yourself, it is best to have your hair parted in sections then work each section. Just like in the video.
After: Finger Coiled with Going Natural Silky Shea Hair Butter.
Sectioning your hair before you start in 6 to 12 big parts will make this a lot easier. Work in sections by taking a part out then start taking real small pencil size sections.
For each little section, add a little Silky Shea Hair Butter to the needles of your comb or brush and brush it through the full length of your strands.
Once a section is tangle free roll it around your finger just like in the video and let it go. You will see a nice curl twirling. Repeat until all sections are done and your head is full of beautiful coils. Your hair will be very moisturized and that is good but to keep the style you have to make sure that your hair dries this way.
You don’t have to let it air dry. Wind may disturb the coils so you a hair drier bonnet. The great thing about using the Silky Shea Hair butter is not only that it smells so good. Even better is that the heat will allow all the nutritious ingredients to penetrate the strands and condition them while you get your style on.Just make sure the dryer is not too hot.
Once your hair is completely dry you can rock these as style or you can separate them to look fuller. Just make sure to take them out when the hair is completely dry and viola: you got coils! Coils work in every environment, work, a night out and even casual. Tie your hair up at night and you should be able to wear them for a week.
If you want to restore some off the coils after sleeping on them, use a little Silky shea and coil your hair arount your finger. Good luck and send us your style!
Besides family, love and health, happy hair is one more thing to be grateful for. Thanksgiving is the perfect time to show your gratitude with gifts that will only reciprocate love and make your hair flourish. Best of all, all of these gifts are shipped to your for free.
Easy Foam Rollers
Whether you rock your 4C natural hair or locs the one thing you need this season are these foam rollers to get your curls on!
They are super easy to use, heat resistant, super soft, flexible, don’t pull your strands, don’t dry out your hair and best of all, you get the most amazing curls!
One pack is usually 9.99 but now you can get them for only 6.99. Click to watch the video and be convinced.
Shower head filter
Not only your hair will be thankful but so will your skin. This amazing filter prevents buildup, dry hair and itchy scalp by filtering out chlorine and other elements that are harsh to your hair and skin. What makes this shower head exceptional is the four different types of nano ceramic balls to create a healthy experience, including Germanium, Far Infrared Ray and Tourmaline;
A great gift for yourself or a loved one. It ships for free! Get the Shower Head now.
There is no better towel on this planet to dry your hair faster than this over-sized 80 x 140 cm microfiber towel. This quick drying towel is perfect to dry Locs, 4C Hair, Afro and big voluminous Curls instantly without disrupting the natural curl pattern of ones hair.
To cut your hair drying time in half just wrap your head in the towel so the hair friendly microfibers can do their job absorbing the water from your strands while you just chill.
Made from medical silicone rubber this electric waterproof scalp massager is the tool everyone who cares about their hair needs. Whether you grow your locs, 4C or 3A curls, the vibrations of this scalp massager feels healing, relaxing and soothing at the same time. Beyond that it also gets rid of an itchy scalp in the most gentle way and stimulates blood circulation to promote hair growth. Get the Microfiber Towel at WhatNaturalsLove.
Electric Scalp Massager To Relieve Stress, Itches, Promote Blood Circulation And Hair Growth
And the best thing: if you suffer from an itchy scalp this is the perfect way to tackle that! It gets rid of the itches and stimulates blood circulation.Get the Electric Scalp Massager.
Oil Mister Sprayer For Afros, Braids, Locs, 4C Hair
Mister Sprayer to easily and evenly distribute oil on your strands. Whether you have an Afro, Braids, Locs, 4C Hair or big bouncy curls, this Mister Sprayer made from stainless steel, will help get your hair moisturized from root to tip.
No more endless rubbing and still skipping parts. Just fill this beautiful sprayer with any kind of liquid oil then start misting and spraying. Your hair will thank you too! Get the oil mist sprayer at WhatNaturalsLove.com.
Are you an aspiring model in need of professional photos or a hairstylist who needs photos of her outstanding hairdos? Then I got great news for you!
I am doing a photo shoot on Saturday October 19 at L’Atelier Raif in Brooklyn. All you need to be is photo shoot ready.
This means, you need to have your make up done and have your hair styled. Then you have a choice. You can wear your own clothes or you can also be immortalized in a shoot with designers clothes from L’atelier Raif.
This a pre-holiday deal. Here is what you get: 2 looks, 25 digital images and 1 large print. You can use the images for your social media to promote yourself. On instagram, facebook, snatchap, however you like.
Investment: $99 (Usual price $199)
To see my portfolio visit https://going-natural.com/photostudio/ and send a text.
Since it is inevitable for lively coils to intertwine, we need to know how to correctly untangle our hair strands. Detangling natural hair becomes an art that one needs to master for the sake of healthy strands. The art of detangling will allow you to untie knots without damaging or breaking hair strands. It will take some practice, and a little patience, but once you know how to do it, you’ll wonder what the fuss was all about.
Time and patience
Always take the time to untangle your hair. Don’t start doing it if you are in a hurry. Your kinks will only suffer from impatient and hasty pulling; the knots will get tighter and there is a likely chance that you’ll do damage to your hair. All this will only upset you and won’t contribute to your happiness or beauty. That’s reason enough to take your time.
Don’t try to comb your entire head at once unless you have some freshly cut naps of one inch or less. Forget about the commercials where you see women combing through their long, thick hair with one stroke; it just doesn’t work like that. Not for anyone. Always work in sections. If your hair is between two and four inches long, you can section and untangle at the same time. If your hair has passed four inches, it’s easier to create sections before you start to untangle.
Parting the hair
Here is an easy way to part your hair into sections. You need a rat-tail comb and either clips or scrunchies. If you are handy enough, you don’t need a comb. You can part with your fingers. If your hair is long enough you won’t need clips or scrunchies, you can twirl or twist each section and tuck it in its base to keep separated hair place. Remember, don’t comb or brush while sectioning, just use your fingers to separate the parts and strands from each other.
1. Put the tail of the comb in the middle of your front hairline and carefully start parting. The tail won’t go through at once. If it gets caught up in a couple of kinks, stop and separate the hair with your fingers before continuing to part. Carry on until your hair is divided in a left and a right part.
2 Gather one part and secure it with a scrunchie or separate it with clips from the other part.
3 Take the other loose part and divide it into 2 parts. Start with the rat-tail in the middle of your head and carefully pull in a straight line to the top of your ear. Again stop if the tail doesn’t go through at once and separate the hair with your hands.
4 Gather one part and secure with a scrunchie and then also secure the other part.
5 Now divide the first section into two parts the same way. Start in the middle of your head and continue to the top of the ear.
6 Now your hair is divided in four distinct sections. Part each of these sections again, into two,three or four parts until you have manageable palm-sized sections. You should be able to keep the part in one hand while brushing or untangling with the other. A head usually makes 10 to 12 sections but it depends on the length and thickness of the strands. If the hair is less dense, four to eight sections may also do.
Before you start to detangle with any tool, make sure your hair is completely moisturized with a conditioner or a detangler. You can use a spray bottle but you can also do this while you are in the shower. Once you are experienced in detangling, the hair doesn’t have to be completely wet, but your naps must always be flexible and supple to prevent breakage. I highly recommend the No More Knots. It comes in a spray bottle so not only does it help with moisturizng and untangling, it’s also easy to use. Use it together with the Silky Shea Butter and you have a perfect combination.
Keep a section of hair in one hand and let your hand rest on the scalp. This prevents hair from pulling. Start combing or brushing at the ends with your other hand and work your way to the scalp. Make gentle plucking movements and don’t try to pull through a snarl. Just stop, take the knot out by carefully separating strands with your hands and continue brushing or combing.
Untangle dry ends
If the ends of your hair feel a little dry, dip your comb or brush in the Silky Shea Hair Butter and start detangling the ends. Within no time, the brush should glide through and your ends will feel moisturized. If you have healthy ends they will curl up like in the picture below.
Now take a look at how it’s professionally done by Adenike from the Wooven Wool. Model is Lurie Daniel Favors from Afro State of Mind, Memories from a Nappy Headed Black Girl.
Going Natural Lecture in Amsterdam, the Netherlands at Vereniging Ons Suriname
Sorry about the sound. What I want to show you is the difference between Sisterlocks and Braidlocs. In this case Yvonne has her locs for 9 years, 3 times as long as mine, her locs are clearly thinner but mine are also curled.
At a glance it is nearly impossible to tell the difference between Braidlocs and Sisterlocks. Even a closer look won’t necessarily tell you the difference because once natural hair is matured and loced, the matted hair strands look the same.
Needless to say, my Braidlocs are mistaken for Sisterlocks all the time. So, to help you understand the difference if you ever have to make a choice, I like to explain difference between Braidlocs and Sisterlocks.
There are five key differences between Braidlocs and Sisterlocks: the installation, the grid, the start technique, the maintenance technique and the price.
- The installation
Sisterlocks are trademarked and can only be installed by a certified Sisterlocks consultant or trainee. So if really want Sisterlocks make sure your loctition is certified. You can check that on the Sisterlocks Website. There are more than a few people out there who claim to do these but are not certified.
Braidlocs are simply started with braids so they can be installed by anyone who knows how to braid. You can braid your hair yourself or go to a salon to have your hair braided.
- The Grid
Since locs the grid determines the look of the future locs, the grid is very important. Sisterlocks have a meticulous grid that takes your texture and density of your hair into account to create locs that are uniform in size and shape.
When you start Braidlocs you can also start with a grid that is perfect for you it just won’t be as meticulous as that of a trained Sisterlocks consultant.
- The Start Technique
Unlike most braiding techniques a consultant will start at the end of your strands and work her way up with a tool to create a Sisterlock in your hair. The technique is comparable to crocheting and it will allow your strands to stay together as one loc from the very start.
Braidlocs simply start with braiding the hair as usual. There is no tool needed nor a special technique. Braids also keep your strands together very well.
- The Maintenance technique
A rotation is really the way locs are maintained. It is basically attaching the new hair growth to the rest of the loc. A Sisterlocks rotation depends on the texture of one’s hair as well as the density.
Although Braidlocs can be maintained with a Sisterlocks rotation they are usually maintained by interlocking which is also a kind of a rotation.
- The price
As they often take more than one day to install, Sisterlocks are pricey. You really pay for the expertise and time of the consultant. So the longer the hair, the thinner your locs, the more hours it takes and the more you will pay.
Since Braidlocs are not trademarked you can maintain your locs yourself, have them interlocked or go to a Sisterlocks consultant.
For products for locs, Braidlocs, Sisterlocks and Dreadlocks, check out the Locs & Stuff store.